Climate Politics Stupidity

Danny Healy (Rae) and climate change denial

As I sat on top of the chicken house yesterday in the pouring rain with my neighbour Adolf O’Goonassa, we watched an old man who could hardly walk or talk staggering through the fields with a creel of fish.

‘Tis true what Danny Healy (Rae) says, he shouted against the downpour. Only the Man above is in charge of the weather.

Adolf reached into the póca of his weskit, withdrawing a pouch of tobacco and a small bottle of whiskey.

Do you know phwhat Bock? he muttered in the softest, most melodious Irish anyone ever heard.

Phwat? I replied.

‘Tis a bad sign that the ducks are in the nettles.

And so it was. A bad sign indeed, because even though a Kerry village pines for its missing idiot, our national parliament gains one more ignoramus. Kilgarvan’s loss is Ireland’s loss.

Danny Healy Rae Michael Healy Rae

On the other hand, you might say that Danny Healy’s (Rae) contribution to the climate change debate was a master-class in the power of buffoonery (if by contribution you mean bluster and if by debate you mean denial). You could almost hear them tuning up those banjos back in Kerry as Danny rounded on Eamon Ryan and told him that one year the sun didn’t shine in Ireland at all at all, and another year we were drowned out of it. And in 1740, three million of us died from famine at a time when there were only 2.5 million in the country and there were no combustible engines then either as Danny reminded us.

Twice, Danny pointed out that there were no combustible engines back in those days long ago.

Squeal like a pig? No. Eamon kept a straight face throughout Danny’s  lecture on a subject he plainly knew nothing about and in a way it was hard not to shed a nostalgic tear. There was a time when every bar in Ireland had some bombast ready to hold forth on any subject in return for a pint or a cigarette.

Of course Danny, no more than the rest of his political crew, isn’t that easily bought. It will take a lot more than the offer of a small whiskey to sway him, and that’s why, after displaying to the world the boundless unplumbed depths of his ignorance, he brought his rant around to local matters.

Danny made it plain that he sees no difference between weather and climate and besides, there’s nothing we can do about it down here on Planet Earth. God above, you see, controls the weather and when it rains, the best thing the government could do would be give maybe €200,000 to drain the river at Glenflesk, naturally enough using diggers supplied by Danny’s plant-hire firm which was specially set up by God to protect Kerry from his wrath.

It probably plays well enough around Kenmare and Kilgarvan, and what else would Danny care about? This, after all, is the same man who suggested that pub owners should be able to give their customers certificates allowing them to drive with excess alcohol in their blood, and just like the flooding and the diggers, this suggestion had nothing whatever to do with the fact that he owns a pub himself.

And still they elected him.

Let’s hope, when he arrives to save the poor drowned people of Glenflesk, his engines aren’t too combustible.

Climate Our lives

Stormy Weather

Hurricane Darwin is pounding us.

Take that, ya bastards!  I’ll soon find out who’s the fittest.

I wandered into town today and, taking careful heed of the weather warnings, I put the old Bockmobile in a multi-storey car park, even though I think they’re a bunch of thieves.  It was only for a half hour anyway, so I didn’t think it would cost much, but that was before a gigantic hurricane attacked us.

My business might have taken half an hour in total, in my imagined plan, followed by a relaxing read of the paper, maybe the crossword and a meeting with my henchmen to plan the assassination of a minor dictator in South America or Central Africa.  In other words, an average day.

Is that how it turned out?

Absolutely not.  Dictators remained unassassinated as slates flew from our roofs, and I huddled in a pub, slugging coffee and clocking up parking charges.

Damn!  I don’t mind savage weather, but I’m not all that fond of having my head cloven in two by a falling slate.  That’s not something any of us wants.  And so I cooled my heels in front of a burning fire, finishing Sudokus and trying to complete the new crossword that none of us can understand any more.

My main concern is simple enough: has the Bockschloss been demolished by this appalling onslaught?  But if I try to drive home, will I be killed by a flying roof? Will a tree suddenly topple and extinguish the life for me?  Man killed by falling oak.  Dismally crushed, as Tristram Shandy put it, in the first novel ever written.

I arrive home to find the Bockschloss more or less intact, though not entirely.  There is a certain amount of damage, for which I will have henchmen shot, but the Hound of Satan has taken charge and is directing operations.  Sadly, though, my hand-built gazebo is no more.

Oh well.  It affords more time for my research work with the Iona Institute Prayer Group.


Heatwave in Ireland

30 degrees, Celsius.  That’s 86°F in old money, and in case you’re wondering, the °F stands for °Fucking hot.

I ventured forth at lunchtime, thereby proving that it’s not only mad dogs and Englishmen who go out in the mid-day sun, and I have to tell you, it’s very hot indeed, as if you needed anyone telling you this.  Unless, of course, you happen to be one of the many Inuit followers of BTR.

Jesus Christ, I’m coated in a permanent film of sweat, which many people would normally find revolting except that I’m not alone.  In fact I’m like everyone else in the country, where we’re experiencing temperatures similar to Spain and parts of North Africa.  Because I expect to be out in the open all day tomorrow, with no hope of shelter, I’m seriously thinking of buying a djellaba and a keffiyeh, or at least knocking something together out of old sheets and tea-towels.

What do you think?  I don’t care how I look.

Failing that, I might go for the Fremen look.  Very cool.


My tomato plants and sunflowers are begging for mercy.   The dog is lying on his Satanic side looking up at me in dejection with his tongue hanging out on the floor.  I’m exhausted, Master.  Please bring me something slow-moving to kill.

The one major drawback of this weather is the number of people parading around half naked.  Hairy chests, beer bellies, bad tattoos and wife-beater t-shirts, and that’s only the women.  I don’t like it.  There must surely be a city by-law.  No Wal-Martism!  Down with it, I tell you!

The other thing I don’t like is all this drinking in public, a thing I remarked on to my friends as we sat outside our favourite pub the other day, enjoying our ice-cool beers. Look at those scobes at the corner, I told them , with their cans of cider.  Disgusting.  Drinking in public.  Pint?

I’ll have to get away soon.  Maybe to the islands or maybe to the highlands.  I’m not sure yet.  Maybe I’ll head for someplace sunny.  I haven’t been to our favourite little bolt-hole in Croatia for ages though I’ve been threatening for the last six months.  But it would probably make sense to wait until the Irish heatwave has passed, wouldn’t it?  After all, what kind of fool would you feel if you flew off in search of the sun this week?

The Hound of Satan isn’t enjoying this, which surprised me.  I thought he’d be used to much higher temperatures, given his origins but he hasn’t even got the energy to eviscerate a postman.  I don’t know what to do.  Maybe I should drag him down the road and kick him into the river.  Yesterday, I threw him a piece of raw meat and he looked at it like I’d offered him a bowl of organic salad.  One one level, this is not good, but on another, you know what I’m thinking, don’t you?  Yeah.  Fuck him.

I’m enjoying this roasting weather.  Long may it last.


Rainy Weather

It’s miserable out there.  Miserable, I tell you. I’m looking out at this rain hopping off the street and I’m asking myself what the hell I think I”m doing.  I’m coughing and sneezing.  My throat feels like a monkey sandpapered it and my head is throbbing.  This is a day to be home, tucked up on the sofa with a duvet, a hot whiskey and a good detective novel.

I want to run out and scream at the rain.  Stop fucking raining, d’ya hear?  Stop it!!

But of course, I now there’s no point screaming at rain.  Even I know that, but sometimes, the weather gets so miserable we become irrational, not to mention irascible, and run around shouting orders at the elements.

Stop, damn you!

It would be much better if I had a walking stick or something to shake at the sky in fury, and it would come in very handy for shouting at urchins as well.  Clear off. Get away.  Clear off!!

It would also come in quite handy in my declining years for helping me to stand up.   Even now, I make little involuntary grunting noises when I move, and they counterpoint with my involuntary cursing in a manner most people find deeply unnerving.

Aaargh. Fuck you!  Grunt. Bastard! Oof, my knee. Fuck off.

It’s called getting old.  You curse at non-existent enemies and groan at the pain of ancient injuries, which reminds me.  That wrist I broke all those years ago falling off a bike is hurting like a bastard right now due to the cold and damp.  The ankle I broke playing soccer is giving me hell.  The elbow I broke in an argument with a motorbike is saying, Bock, I’ve been talking to the other bodily joints.  Go home and give us all a rest.  Just go home, why don’t you?

I think that’s a sensible elbow.  I should listen to it.  Home.  Sofa.   Warm duvet.  Hot whiskey.  Good book.

Can you spot anything wrong with that picture?


Rain, Rain and More Rain

Jesus Christ, it’s pissing rain again.

Will this rain ever stop? I ask myself, and after a brief lacuna, comes the reply: Yes.  When it freezes.

I know I’ve said this before, but let me put it to you again.  What happened to evolution?  We Irish all hate wet weather, even though we’ve been on this island for thousands of years.  Why is this?  Wouldn’t you think we’d have adapted by now?  Are there Eskimos up there in the Arctic shivering and looking through holiday brochures? I hate this place.  Why can’t we live in Jamaica?

I don’t think so.  They just go on cutting holes in the ice, relaxing with a nice plate of seal blubber like Mammy used to make and running from Polar bears who, by the way, turned out to be Irish!  Who knew?  Even the bears couldn’t stand our miserable weather.

Fuck this rain, said the Irish brown bear.  Let’s migrate to somewhere absolutely freezing and mutate into very pretty but fearsome predators.

Are there lost tribes deep inside the Amazon jungle saying It’s very steamy in here.  Will we move to Arizona?

No.  It’s quick, gimme a poison dart.  I see a delicious monkey.

Is there some Alpaca farmer at the top of the Andes complaining?  I’m fucking frozen.  Maybe I should be farming sheep in Australia.

I think not.  Yet here we are, all us Irish muttering away as we peel off our threadbare Gore-Tex jackets left over from the good old days when we could afford jackets.  It’s either about to rain, it’s just stopped raining, it actually is raining or it looks like rain.  If it isn’t doing any of the these things, that’s a very bad sign.  Look out the window.  Is the road flooded?  No?  Well that can only mean one thing: it’s frozen.  Check immediately for burst pipes.

Christ will it ever stop?