Somehow I would gather that people are blue in the face from the all publicity this film has got and its only out since last Friday (15th December). Went to see this Monday evening at the Omniplex at the Crescent shopping center and was not impressed by what I saw. I wasn’t too impressed by the previous episode “The Force Awakens”, so was not in a queue for this film in particular. Hey what the heck given all the publicity and hype and the “rave” reviews given to it by film critics, had to go see it. Well what I think is that the film has very much recycled the plot of the “Empire Strikes Back”. The beginning of the Last Jedi is a total lift of the rebels escape from the Ice planet Hoth in the “Empire Strikes Back”.
The last Jedi borrows a lot from previous films and its not at all original. The film is very “PC” lots of women, black and Asian actors to the point where they become noticeable and detracts from the film a lot especially the “Empire” or “First Order”. “Luke Skywalker” is back as a very grumpy Jedi Master who lives on a Island, promises to train “Rey” but doesn’t, the part doesn’t suit Mark Hamill “Luke Skywalker” very well. Snoke, Kylo Ren and General Hux don’t make it as baddies. The whole film looked like a terrible remake, with having no plot to tell basically. No need to make any more Star Wars films I think.
Here is the Irish Times on Star Wars The Last Jedi
Here is a excerpt from the “Bitter Pill” on what is wrong with Ireland’s Healthcare system. Verbatim
“The Two Tier System
No discussion of the Irish health system can take place without an examination of its foundations. It is built on the two -tier system of public and private healthcare. At the heart of this system is a blatant lie about choice, one that is propagated by the government and vested interests in a system that rewards private practice and penalises public patients . The two-tier system is the single greatest obstacle to improving the level of healthcare provided in the country. This is because it leaches off resources paid for by the taxpayer and gives little in return to the public, while providing incentives to neglect their public duties. As such it is a system that services no one other than those who profit from it, and it works fundamentally against the improvement of public health services. Yet as long as this system prevails, those who can afford to rightly feel they have little choice but to purchase private health insurance.
The Power of Consultants
The two-tier system, in turn must be understood in terms of the role of consultants and, more specifically the power they wield within the health service. Consultants are paid by the State to work a normal working day in their public capacity, but they retain complete discretion over when they choose to be in the hospital and when they chose to leave. Consultants who complain about having to work long hours often neglect to mention that many of those hours are spent looking after private patients to supplement their income. Considering that the Irish taxpayer is paying salaries of upward €140 K * to these men and women, there is a major question to be asked about accountability.
It is a well- established and universally accepted fact that accountability is a key factor in achieving the standards of best medical practice.’Measuring practice’ and comparing it ‘against existing standards’ are key components in the audit cycle , the gold-standard for evaluating and improving medical practise. Yet in the ‘Medical Consultants Report’ , published in March 2007 by the Comptroller and Auditor General, it was found that no record is kept of how many hours consultants devote to public service as compared to private work, and that the prioritising of private patients is leading to a neglect of public care”
*Book was published in 2007
Its that time of the year again Christmas !! Well all the radio stations are playing christmas songs all the time but I don’t feel that Christmassy somehow. Maybe it is just me but I lack any emotion or christmas spirit at this time of year. Everything encourages people to spend, spend, all for just one day. If I was in the buying market i would wait till the New year but i am not everyone, its all bit of a rush. The main feeling i get is the passage of time another year over and new one just starting. Its a feeling of getting older, no longer immortal like in those younger days, now all too aware of our mortal life. Christmas definitely is for the young ones expecting Santa and all that.
Just a note on something I watched during the week, Primetime Investigates Public Vs Private, the battle for care. It was not the usual run from Rte and looks like they put some effort into investigating and making their documentary. They focused on how the big waiting list in the public systems are made worst by the consultants “moonlighting” for the private sector as well, often at the expense of their public patients. Seemingly the consultants who are suppose to work 4 days- 37 to 39 hours, work as little as 13 hours in the public system and often too busy with their private practices to look after public patients despite being paid to do so. Public patients are often told to “go private” to beat the long ques that exist despite the taxpayer paying for the doctor’s salaries. the junior doctors, nurses and other staff plus the equipment and the premises as well. The first question patients are asked is do they have private health insurance which is paying on the double or maybe on the triple.
The public gets bad value for money, patients are often stressed by long waiting lists and the hospitals are ran badly by inept management, who pays people for a job they are not doing- no-one except the Irish health service the only ones who can do it. A book I read a few years ago “The bitter Pill” was written anonymously “Doctor X” by a foreign doctor on the Irish health service was scathing on how it was run and said one of the biggest problems was a private sector which was “leaching” off the public sector, which wouldn’t be profitable if it didn’t. Another comment was the sending of patients off for private scans when the cheapest thing to do, was to buy the bloody scanner. The writer had a long list of improvements at the back of his book which is well worth a read. In a few years things will come to a crunch in the Public Vs Private systems.
Successive Irish governments had done their best to run down the public health care system and foist an “American style healthcare” system onto the Irish public. The public healthcare system can’t be seen to work as then they would no need to go private. No big money for anyone especially the politicians who get big backhanders from healthcare companies.
A better run public system is badly needed and wanted by the Irish public but seemingly government’s with different Agenda’s are the main problem to the “fix”. Until this changes the mess will continue.
links of interest:
In the news of late is Rathkeale, not for good news apparently. Armed police are to be deployed to this small town in the run up/during and after Christmas period. Large numbers of “travellers” come to the town each Christmas and its become quite rowdy time for Rathkeale. Haven’t heard of a lot of trouble happening but the deployment of armed police at Christmas time is becoming a regular event.
These visitors constantly drive up and down the town in swoosh cars which are actually rented for the Christmas period. They are annoying and cause traffic jams, feral children are also a problem. Don’t see why they all come to Rathkeale as they are living their lives elsewhere. Some business in town do well from the influx of “Visitors” but they give a bad image of Rathkeale and many houses are boarded up for the rest of the year.
Rathkeale becomes half a Ghost town. The “Traveller” community is over represented in Rathkeale and more should be done to encourage people to live there and more business/employment attracted to the town.
On the news at nine o’ clock is the announcement that Gerry Adams is to step down as leader of Sinn fein. Gerry Adams has held the position since 1983 which is over thirty four years, quite a achievement in a modern political party.
Gerry Adams has led a chequered career in Sinn fein, he ended the “armed struggle” alongside Martin McGuinness who died earlier this year and signed up for the controversial Good friday agreement. He has built up a political organisation with seats at the Dáil, Westminster and Stormont assemblies. The party has become a lot more numerous than during the “armed struggle” as seen during their ard fheis in Dublin. However the movement he leads tends to take one step forward followed by two steps backward. He put in a highly suspicious performance during the 2007 Dáil elections. letting Micheal McDowell land some punches on him about Farc and the sum of twenty five million allegedly obtained from them despite knowing that some PD’s were “ansbachers”. Nobody asked him to explain his showing and he largely lost the election for Sinn fein. Some form of blackmail seemed to have been used. Adams led/leads a movement that is chock full of informers, touts and spies. One wonders what the future holds for Sinn fein and will they get their referendum on Irish unity in the years to come, everybody needs to play for team Ireland to win that one.
History will write on Gerry Adams and his legacy in the fullness of time.
Just taking note of Tuesday nights match between Ireland and Denmark (Ireland lost 5-1). Only saw the second half of the match but it was a very disappointing performance from the Republic’s soccer team, they seemed rudderless without a sense of direction and gave away easy goals to Denmark. They held in Copenhagen but why did they go to bits in Dublin ? It was a shocking performance to put on for a home crowd, who were expecting to be booking places for Russia next summer some hope of that now. It looked like the soccer squad hadn’t did their homework and it showed. They had a easy group to qualify from and made a mess of it and left it all to the very end to do. Don’t think one should expect a lot from this soccer squad in the future.
People with awful lot to hide.
OOH No we don’t !
Our esteemed Taoiseach Leo Varadklar has put his foot in it, by saying on an interview with BBC spotlight that more than 50%+1 wouldn’t be sufficient for there to be an United Ireland and consensus (general agreement according to Google) would be required, Now hold on a minute here when was “consensus” ever required when it came to the north… In the never never more like. Making up my mind on our present taoiseach but its clear he is a blue-shirt of the first order, he is half Indian which means he should know better to come out with this pseudo-unionism. Lord Kilclooney aka John Taylor of the “moderate” OUP thanked Leo Varadkar for his “realism”, no thank his blue-shirt.
The loyalists are full of threats of course but like all bullies don’t amount to much when they are stood up to. One thing they never was a unionist majority in Ireland, Donegal remains the most northern county in Ireland and Donegal, Cavan and Monaghan are part of ulster too but where excluded from “Northern Ireland” for the simple reason they would be too many Catholics.
Irish people as a whole were never consulted whether they wanted a border or not it was just forced on them. However one loyalist politician I do agree with is Nelson McCausland when he says that the taoiseach’s comments are “a recognition that the main political parties in the Irish Republic have no real interest in Irish unity“.
Fianna fail and fine gael have little interest in uniting Ireland or providing jobs for their people, they feel they have a god given right to scams and want nothing to rock the boat.
Here are some links of interest:
Thanks to Slugger O’ Toole here is the Leo Vardakar interview