Sunday, 22nd July 2018
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Michael Garland,

bizBoost Chair,

Waterford Business Group

Hi ho, hi ho it’s off to....

North Korea!!!!

Much of the news last week, focused on the announcement that three Irish TDs would be paying a visit to the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK). North Korea to you and me. Yes, that madcap

totalitarian dictatorship, run by their supreme leader Kim Jong-un, will be visited by Ireland’s "Three Stooges" - Messers Ross, McGrath and Waterford’s very own Minister Halligan, will fly out, at their own expense, to the capital Pyongyang, we assume, to stop, in their own words, "The inevitable move towards war with the good old USA".

This amazing story began last week. Just like many people, I immediately checked my phone, when I first read this, to see if it was the 1st of April. I also checked that this was not a Waterford Whispers news story. Lastly, I even went online to look up The Daily Mail, that font of knowledge for ALL spoof news stories. Low and behold the oracles told me, that this was actually true!

This was not fake news, but a real and current, national news story. A letter has been penned and sent by Minister Halligan, requesting that this parliamentary Troika be allowed permission to visit DPRK. We can also assume that they have requested a meeting with Kim Jong-un, otherwise that whole junket, would of course be a waste of time. After all, you don’t ask the monkey to play you a tune on the organ – do you?

The justification for this visit is that "Larry, Moe and Curly" are, "a group of three prominent politicians in a country highly-respected around the world for its neutrality." That’s a fair enough statement, but the word neutrality, can be very loosely defined these days, depending on which side of the fence you sit!

I would also be pretty sure, that Kim Jong-un’s school lessons, did not have so much as a sentence about Ireland’s standing as a world powerhouse, when covering global history. One could even hazard a guess that Kim could not point to Ireland on a world map. Much the same as many people wouldn’t have a clue where the DPRK sits, between the Yellow Sea and the Sea of Japan.

The thought that this Troika could do any good on the world stage just beggars belief. Does it not show contempt, for the very people of Ireland who voted these three into power? For "Huey, Louie and Dewey" to think that they represent some kind of World Peace Brokers, is delusional beyond anyone’s imagination.

Donald the Trump, is hell bent on giving Kim the bloodiest of noses. He has even taken his golf bats with him, to help relieve the monotony of his marathon tour of Asia. He’ll be visiting Japan, China, Vietnam, Philippines and South Korea. Do our three, secretly living, in their own wee world, see themselves on a par with other world leaders, never mind other politicians? It would appear that they do, which is worrying for us, their electorate.

Whilst our "Three Amigos" are plotting and scheming to save "Who?" from the El Guapo character, we are left wondering why they are so willing to apparently disregard their own people.

There are far too many pressing problems in Ireland and Waterford to list in this wee column. Currently there are 8,000 homeless people, with 3,000 of these being children. NO Cath Lab in Waterford City, to service the 500,000 people across the South East. University status for WIT appears further away than ever. REAL regional development is nonexistent. A skills shortage, in key industrial areas, that has been endemic for years. I could go on and on.

We have far too many current issues that these "City Slickers" need to tackle right here, right now. To think that they believe they are doing us a favour by going East, has all the makings of a slapstick film. I can see comedy writers bashing out scripts as we speak, on their Apple Macs.

Even if in some parallel universe, they succeed in getting an audience with Kim, they will NEVER get to see the "maniac" Donald. They quite happily burned that bridge last year!

Maybe they’ll meet the "Stay Puft Marshmallow Man" next?

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