Also on the News is Enda Kenny attempted to defuse a row with Irish Trade Unions over Party Line comments over 'vested' interests on the Fine Gael website in regards to Trade Unions. David Begg, general secetary of the Congress of Irish Trade Unions is meeting with Enda to settle the Row. The Congress had asked the Line be removed over fears that a Fine Gael Government would enter prolonged confrontation with the Organisation over trade unions despite good relations in the Past.
Now with those headlines said, Recent Election polls, as reliable as they ever are heh, have shown and increase of 5 percent support for Fine Gael and a drop of 4% for Labour, with the Independents gaining as well. In all Likelihood previous predictions of a Fine Gael Majority Government with a coallition of Independents is still quite possible and Labour's chances for power is dwindling rapidly, thank God.
Now its only fair that as Enda Kenny is very likely to become An Taoiseach i should do a breif review of the Fine Gael policies and what they could potentially mean for Ireland's future. Now it goes without saying that as bad as the 'Conservative' Irish Party is to any good and Sound Catholic Irish man, nevermind a Monarchist, they are nowhere near the dirty revolutionaries that Labour is, but it still remains to be seen if they will be the lazy Traitors Fine Fail turned out to be.
The Fine Gael Policy for Reform is delightfully Called 'The Five Point plan to get Ireland working', what else is new? The Five points focus on five major Areas of concern the Party seeks to focus on, Jobs, Budget, Health, Public Sector and Politics. Yeah, a wide range huh? There is no way any government, no matter how competent could hope to fix all these issues in one or two terms, but this depends on how long the Gaels stay in Power for int he South. Lets have a breif overview of each section based on a skim reading of the PDFs they have supplied for public viewing.
- JOBS: The usual hub-bub with regards to acknowledging the effects of the recession on Jobs, reducing costs, red tape regulations blah blah ''down with the beurocracy!'' Bull we expect. The meat of the issue is to support investment and support 'competitive taxes' as well as supporting Irish Businness to escape Bankruptcy and a Cabinet Office pertaining to Jobs. They do however support a shift to Export-driven-Growth which could have knock on effects to issues I have raised previously with Ireland's econemy. As well as a 'New Asia Strategy. Another promising er...promise is to encourage working age Irishmen and women to get off benefits and other such debilitating nonsense. http://finegael2011.com/pdf/WorkingforOurFuture.pdf
- BUDGET: Call me a cynic, but this is the one area I do not expect any potential government to do well with in the next half a dozen terms, let alone a single term. Their policies are wide ranging and rather intelligible to a certain extent in a wide range of Taxation issues, including water charges. They've also dedicated and entire document outlining how they intend to reform Irish Banking to restore international trust in our competency. Yeah I laughed too. But give them Credit for trying. http://www.finegael2011.com/pdf/LessWasteLowerTaxesStrongerGrowth.pdf http://www.finegael2011.com/pdf/Credit_Where_Credit_is_Due.pdf
- HEALTHCARE: Short and to the point, Fine Gael believes the current Healthcare system in the South is broken, and propose the Fine Gael FairCare Universal system eliminating the current public-private two tier system in the South. To this I honestly tell Fine Gael to wise the bollucs up if you'll excuse my language. The current system costs 20 Billion a year, but compare that to the Bloated monster of the NHS right across the water, or the State-crushing French Healthcare system. You want us to emulate these systems? I am not without compassion and I recognise the horrid flaws in the current Healthcare system, but total Nationalisation is not the answer, especially since it will most definitely be a more expensive failure then our current system. I'd link their Policy PDF but they do not have one on their website.
- PUBLIC SECTOR: Fine Gael offers to create Smaller, better Government by cutting back room waste, destroying Quangos and shrinking the Public sector to make it more efficient (compare this policy attitude to the Healthcare suggestions if you will). Promising to reduce red tape, and increase accountability of managers and other 'middle men' as well as securing front line public services such as teachers, Gardai, as well as streamlining services etc, etc. Most of this I have no qualms with. The also hark back to budget reform and other such, but it really is a wait and see situation to how successful their policies will be. Assuming the 'like minded' independents they'll invite into Government with them agree. http://www.finegael2011.com/pdf/ReinventingGovernment.pdf
- POLITICS: And this is where I flush with Embarassment. Previously I had lamblasted Labour party for 'promising' to abolish the Seanad Eireann, however it seems that Fine Gael is not entirely against this Idea either. However, Fine Gael has promised to make the issue a referendum decision, rather then a policy decision. Not the Best but at least this allows room for the more moderate minded reformists take stage in the public sphere instead of the revolutionaries. Other promises include reducing the number of politicans by 35%, (they did promise smaller government afterall), as well as Constitution Day, which the Government will put forward various suggestions for reform of the Presidency, the Dail, Ombudsmen, and the Judiciary, all of which will be put to Referendum. However I strongly disagree with the abolition of the Second House, it is not effective for Ireland that The Dail should Rule alone and other small countries with only a single house governing well are few and far between. We do not need to take the risk of following their example by abolishing a potential check on the power of Government. http://www.finegael2011.com/pdf/NewPolitics.pdf
And there we have it. Fine Gael is most certainly not the Best possible choice for Ireland's future and I have breifly outlined some of the reasons why. Unfortuneately Ireland really does not have any other choice in the matter, the next Government must be Fine Gael with Independents, we cannot afford to allow the Socialists into power. Whatever Damage Fine Gael does to Ireland it will not be as bad Labour or Sinn Fein.
Or God help us, Fine Fail.