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Bradley Bytes – And on the eighth day they rose again!

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Bradley Bytes And on the eighth day they rose again!

Posters again dominated the local election campaign in the run-up to Friday’s polling day.

Initially, posters dominated the early part of the campaign, and the story revolved around whether or not the posters that were erected could be considered election posters.

Legally, candidates can only put up posters 30 days prior to polling day. But, as you know, politicians are a devious and sneaky shower. They see rules as being there to be broken: it’s the Irish way, exploiting the grey area. So what we had was councillors, and wannabe-councillors, organising public meetings, and putting up ‘election posters’ to advertise those meetings. Technically, by the letter of the law, they weren’t election posters . . . technically a tomato is a fruit but you’re not going to be putting it into a fresh fruit pavlova now are you?

Once the ‘are they, aren’t they’ election posters storm blew-over, attention turned to the poster campaign proper.

Who jumped the gun – and broke the law – by erecting posters early, before the 30-day period, preoccupied the chit-chat round water-coolers.

These candidates were usually newcomers to politics, and either dripping in desperation to get their names out there or giddy with excitement to get the ‘best’ position on lampposts.

On the night of the 30-day period, the city was abuzz with dodgy-looking poster boys (and girls), hanging round lampposts with fold-up ladders and cardboard posters under their arms.

That’s when the jostling for position started: the fight for the prime position for posters – outside schools and churches and at major, busy road junctions – can often be as intense as the fight for votes.

Posters were airbrushed . . . some candidates’ heads of hair looked fuller than in real life . . . some candidates miraculously found the cure for wrinkles . . . others’ baldness disappeared . . . and grey turned to dark brown or amber red . . . some candidates were smiling, candidates whose faces would crack normally if they were to smile . . . other vacuous yokes looked honest and sincere even though they’re subscribers to sleeveen and gombeen politics . . . others, ashamed of their party, tried to hide the logo, so not to be associated with a toxic brand.

Once the posters are all up, that’s when the fun started. And the dirty tricks. There’s nothing like posters to bring out the worst in politicians and their supporters.

The same wide-boys and corner boys who erect their own candidates’ posters are the prime suspects for the ones who are out doing devilment to rivals’ posters.

Posters were defaced . . . they were stolen . . . the poster ties were cut so that the posters would swing around in the wind – if you get clipped with a stray poster you’re not going to vote for the mug that’s on it now are you?

Posters were shunted down the lampposts to a level not as visible . . . posters were turned upside down . . . they were taken down and thrown into fields and along pathways . . . posters were set on fire . . . they were vandalised . . . and all in the interest of getting your vote.

All posters must be removed a week after polling day. If they’re not, then the candidates face fines.

The dirtiest of dirty posters’ tricksters are clever: They steal their rivals posters, hide them for the length of the election campaign and put them up again the day that all posters are supposed to be taken down. And so on the eighth day, posters miraculously appear again . . . and the poor candidates who have had their posters stolen during the campaign, are then stuck with a fine when they reappear unbeknownst to themselves!

For more Bradley Bites see this week’s Sentinel.

Connacht Tribune

Time can play tricks on you – as it keeps on ticking by

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Dave O'Connell
Dave O'Connell

A Different View with Dave O’Connell

It takes a bit of adjusting to accept that 1988 – when Ray Houghton, for example, put the ball in the back of the English net – is as far away from today as 1988 was from 1954 then, as the world was still only really getting back on its feet after the Second World War.

In other words, the exploits of Euro ’88 and a great day in Gelsenkirchen, still fresh in the minds of our fifty-plus generation, is as far into the distant past as the Roger Bannister’s first sub-four-minute mile is to the twentysomethings of today.

It was also the year that marked the end of McCarthyism in the US, when Senator Joe’s ‘communist’ witch-hunt – destroying the lives of so many high profile public figures who could be described as a little liberal at best – was finally pulled into dry dock.

In fairness, McCarthyism has always seemed like ancient history, and we’ve only ever seen Bannister’s achievement through grainy black and white footage – ignoring the fact that our parents had lived through it.

The juxtaposition of personal experience and third-party history rose its head in a different context recently when the latest – and much-pilloried – series of the Crown hit Netflix.

To describe the makers’ approach to history as loose would be an understatement; fact offers little more than a backdrop to the vivid minds of writers who have come up with nothing more than a Royal version of a soap opera.

They got away with that when they were dealing with the early years of Queen Elizabeth’s reign, but this time they were dealing with a history most of us lived through, most notably the death of Diana in 1997.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

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The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City and county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

 

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Connacht Tribune

Guard changes but tough calls wait for another day

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Changing of the guard...Leo Varadkar and Micheál Martin.

World of Politics with Harry McGee

Sic transit gloria mundi. I used to love using that expression when I was a student. For obvious reasons. A. It had the right degree of pretension for a show-off like myself. B. It actually means something.

It should be engraved on the headstone of every politician. Enoch Powell had another way of saying it; all political careers end in failure.

Anyway we have another changing of the guard on December 17, where Micheál Martin steps down as Taoiseach and Leo Varadkar steps in. It might equally be described as moving the deckchairs on the Titanic, if you are an opposition TD.

Unless my political judgement is completely off beam, I think it will be Martin’s last spin as Taoiseach – making him shortest-lived Fianna Fáil Taoiseach, although, in fairness, Albert Reynolds did not last all that much longer than he.

Strangely enough he will remain as Fianna Fáil leader. For how long? Indefinitely. Martin has managed to be a better survivor than many of his predecessors. When he was elected party leader in 2011, many predicted he and the party would be gone by the next election. They weren’t.

Then they said he would be the first Fianna Fáil leader never to be Taoiseach. Then they said he would be gone as Fianna Fáil leader around the time he stood down as Taoiseach. He isn’t and there is a strong chance now he will lead his party into the next general election.

Why? Because there is not a ready-made natural-born Fianna Fáil leader among its parliamentary corps. Not yet, anyway.

If he survives to 2025 he will be actually the second longest serving Fianna Fáil leader after Eamon de Valera, outlasting Bertie Ahern and Charlie Haughey and Sean Lemass.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App

Download the Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App to access to Galway’s best-selling newspaper.

Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

Or purchase the Digital Edition for PC, Mac or Laptop from Pagesuite  HERE.

Get the Connacht Tribune Live app
The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City and county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

 

 

 

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Connacht Tribune

Dream year for Maigh Cuilinn ends with club’s first ever Connacht title

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Maigh Cuilinn's Michéal O’Reilly on the attack against Oisin Kennedy of Tourlestrane during Sunday's Connacht Club Senior Football Final at Pearse Stadium. Photo: Joe O'Shaughnessy.

Inside Track with John McIntyre

Watching Maigh Cuilinn dismantling Westport a few weeks ago, you could never imagine the Galway champions failing to score from play in a half-hour’s football as they chased an historic first ever Connacht title.  Perhaps, the warning signs were there in Maigh Cuilinn’s subsequent struggles against Strokestown in the provincial semi-final when they required extra-time and a terrific individual display from Seán Kelly, together with the accuracy of Owen Gallagher, to eventually fend off the Roscommon men.

After that scare, we presumed Maigh Cuilinn would cut a dash in last Sunday’s Connacht final, especially that they were back on their favourite hunting ground at Pearse Stadium and the opposition was being provided by the Sligo champions Tourlestrane.

But every game is different and with Fergal O’Donnell’s team setting up defensively on a cold December day and having the advantage of the wind in the opening half, Maigh Cuilinn had to be content with a paltry tally of four points – all from Dessie Conneely’s frees – up to the interval.

Compared to their free-scoring outing against Westport, Maigh Cuilinn were having to dig deep and be patient against teams adopting a conservative approach. Their players aren’t robots either and it’s been a long season for the Galway title holders, especially their swathe of county players.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App

Download the Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App to access to Galway’s best-selling newspaper.

Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

Or purchase the Digital Edition for PC, Mac or Laptop from Pagesuite  HERE.

Get the Connacht Tribune Live app
The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City and county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

 

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