Irish Prime Minister to work one shift a week as a doctor

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“in keeping with the protocol to advise people who could be infected over the phone rather than in person”

Damn this virus is spreading over the phone now? :weary:

Sorry. Gotta take ‘em where you can get ‘em sometimes.


Out testing regime is really poor. Obviously we have have a shortage of the reagent and are down the queue for that but it wasn’t managed well. Also the roll out of contact tracing has been botched and we are well behind where we should be. And provision of PPE has been very poor. And the management of nursing homes has been pretty close to a disaster.

And he’s still a neoliberal drone without any empathy with the poors.

One good thing is that some of the ordinary ideological deprivation of the public health system has been reversed. Also I haven’t heard anyone saying we should keep all the ventilators coming off the factories here for ourselves. We’re ordering like everyone else. And we did shut schools and colleges early enough and encourage all other businesses to do it. We didn’t have a law to force everyone to shut down but most did in advance of it.


Where will he be employed?

Apparently the enforcement of the public shutdowns and stay at home order is effectively nil as well. I was speaking to a cousin in Dublin yesterday, she tells me her folks gave up on going for walks and bike rides for exercise after they went to the main drag in Rathcoole and found about 200 people going for an “isolated” walk through the area, all in close proximity to each other.

The read on Leo’s handling of this is a hell of a lot less “avoided an unmitigated outbreak” over there too.


I would imagine that being the leader of Ireland would be more than a full-time job. Why is he dabbling in tele-medicine? He should choose one or the other.

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We’ve been lucky.

The virus was slow to arrive here and we were relatively early with social distancing.

And broadly speaking, people have been voluntarily behaving sensibly.

And the government response wasn’t the complete clusterfuck that we’ve come to expect.

But I think mostly, we’ve been lucky.


He lost a general election at the beginning of February so at the moment he’s only leader by name.

Also, if you take a cynical view, his party above all the Irish parties, have an unhealthy obsession with optics and spin. So this may simply be a PR stunt.

On the face of it it’s terrific that Ireland has a young, openly gay, ethnic minority prime minister who is a qualified medical doctor. But dig a little deeper and his politics are further to the right than you might expect. And his party were openly fascist back in the '30s.


Doesn’t sound like a doctor I would want to have.

I wouldn’t know (though Rathcoole is very close to huge built up areas despite having some remote parts) but I don’t think there is either the force or the will to curfew people. It’s not like we have an army or a paramilitary police force which does this kind of thing. It really depends on an agreement in society to do it. If you are expecting a crackdown to do the job society isn’t really working.

It’s being observed within 2k of my house and that extends from Terenure (posh) to Tallaght (not so) and Crumlin (da mean streetz if you believe certain famous thugs) to Rathfarnham (verging on rural).

Anyway, he only looks good compared to the absolute crazies that are out there. It’s a low bar. He may be a typical right winger but there are always crackpots, racists, fascists, lunatic populists out there to make him look like a great statesman in comparison. He’s not. His party isn’t. But there is such a really low bar out there in the world that people seem to overlook his obvious flaws when a comparison with one of them happens.



I think mostly you’ve been a small country without a lot of population density. You’ve got 3ish million people less than New York City spread over 100 times the land mass. 2ish million less if you include NI.

That gives you a lot more runway, so I don’t know that we’ll know if and how hard the ball was dropped for a bit.

I think it’s more that international press tend to not bother to cover what’s happening in Ireland. So his international image is based entirely on young, gay, educated, minority etc. Which all seems very positive and posh. And the diplomatic image they put out, he seems to be quite good at that.

In the US he’s assumed to be a well liked progressive because that’s the image, and news coverage of Ireland doesn’t delve any deeper. I doubt most of the papers covering the guy could even identify his party.


Which is fair enough: small country, big world.

Anyway last couple of elections I’ve been suggesting that Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael join together. but here’s the clever bit: then they, as majority owners of the old name, sue Sinn Féin for the old name back.

It’s the only one with real international brand recognition.


Honestly they could use a name change anyway. Done quite well distancing themselves from the baggage and shifting into a broad progressive party. Probably have better luck with that project if they stopped being that Sinn Féin entirely.

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Political parties and their names, eh…

  • Conservatives - Oh, they sound nice. Conserving forests, and whales and dolphins.
  • Neo Conservatives - Oh they sound nice. New ways to save the planet.
  • Neo Liberals - Oh they sound easy going. All new and liberal.
  • National Socialists - Oh they sound friendly. A whole nation of social people.
  • Labour - Nah, that sounds like hard work.

Why don’t they just say it like it is?


How about internationalist socialists?


Oh, they sound nice. Exotic and friendly.


Better lock him up then.

A little too friendly. They’re so friendly that they get liquidated by the Tankies before everyone else.

At least Tankies (Extreme Marxist-Leninists) sound threatening.



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