Updated: 13/11/17 : 06:15:37
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Leo kicks off the long, long schmooze

By Eugene McGloin
Political Editor

THE SCHMOOZE season is under way officially and it could last longer than Joseph Locke’s comebacks combined.

What season? What is schmooze? Who the blazes was Joseph Locke?

It seemed if you had formed a new political last Thursday you’d have got an honourable mention in dispatches by Friday from the Blueshirts in Ballyconnell.

The Greens and Uncle Tom Cobley, everybody except Gerry and the Shinners, are now to be courted as (potential) partners in government.

Poor Showing

The Blueshirts were buoyed too by the opinion poll conducted by Behaviour & Attitudes for The Sunday Times yesterday.

But 35% is a long, long way from what the same paper once considered ‘lows’ when Charles Haughey hit support percentages persistently in the low forties.

Wisely, then, Leo has begun cultivating and courting other political groupings, let’s  Schmooze for Ireland’s Sake!

Oh, and giving the ones already on board the government gravy train the impression he’s very, very happy with them — John, Shane, Finan.

Bald Truths

Politics usually does illusions well.....and nearly always gets away with it.

Not so at the weekend for Leo Varadkar; his remarks on homeless in Ireland led to Focus Ireland offering a few bald truths on social media.

The Facebook graphs late Saturday night by Focus Ireland said much, much more than words about the homeless.

                                             The Focus Graph on homelessness

Meanwhile, Fine Gael assured us there would no new British border imposed on us.

Loathed Brits

Of course  the last border here was a gift from the forerunner of Fine Gael in partnership with the (suddenly) loathed Brits!

Finally, on Saturday Fine Gael treated us to a time-warp treat, paternity leave.

Back in 1978 I helped negotiate and sign off on an employment agreement with provision for paternity leave expressly included.

Simple queries occur: Does Fine Gael propose PAID paternity leave, will entitlements be enshrined in statute.

Oh and in annual State funding packages to voluntary agencies will the Government meet the (additional) cost of staff REPLACEMENT during paternity leave, especially in frontline services.

Charmed Life

The answer needs to be ‘Yes’ in all three instances; otherwise we have a dog that doesn’t bark.

To avoid being accused of being sexist, the same three queries apply to maternity leave. 

In that sphere, the State has lived a charmed life of many delusions about its generosity, fairness, opportunity and equal access for women to get paid leave.