Last week I had the great fortune to be approached by the reputable boys from TheScumGentry.com, a high brow online enterprise consisting of poets, musicians and essayists. They wanted me to attend a trade union march in Dublin and write up my interpretation of the day’s events. For me, this was a very welcome development. Aside from a widely acclaimed article published in “Irelands Own” magazine in 1996, my writing career had of late slipped into something of a slumber and my work as a lobbyist had died along with Charles Haughey. Did this new offer mark the beginning of a new era for Garret O’Gorman? Had the scandalous allegations made against me in the past been forgotten?
The young lads intended for me to publish my piece by Sunday evening. Unfortunate circumstances have meant that this deadline was not met. When I travelled to Dublin to attend the March, my first stop was my usual place of rest – the Shelbourne hotel. Unfortunately, she was all booked up. An unexpected setback but there is plenty of other premium hotels in Dublin. I moved onto my next favourite. Again, all booked out. After trying several of Dublin’s finest hotels and some of the not-so-fine ones, it dawned on me what was happening. The fat-cat union bosses, descending on the city like a plague of lazy locusts, had taken all of the best rooms in the city. With the beginning of the march fast approaching and not a hotel room in sight, things looked grim.
It being inconceivable that a gentleman so esteemed as myself could sleep rough, I realised that I had to accept the least bad option – the dreaded youth hostel. I checked into a dingy dive called Isaacs. This explains my tardiness in completing this great piece. A true writer (one who has been proclaimed as an enigmatic genius, no less) could not work in these environs. I was surrounded by the travelling youth of Europe. You know the type - all dreadlocks and trendy glasses. Each one of them playing nomad with mother and father’s hard earned money and forever bemoaning the system, man. When I returned to pen down my thoughts, I was of course unable to do so. Hence my failure to meet the deadline.
But I digress. Although blameless for my circumstances, a true Irishman makes no excuses. He can only valiantly bear the burden of his misfortune. The march - that is what I must tell of. I arrived at the gathering point on Cook Street exactly at the designated time, as is my habit. Upon looking around, and observing the wretches that had gathered, I began to feel ill. What greeted me was the worst of Irish society. Holding back the bilious reaction that was ascending from my gut, I noted an assortment of trade unionists, scroungers, dole scum, single mothers and worst of all – crusties. In short, the worst of Irish society had gathered for this march.
At two pm, the March got under way. Not knowing where else to look, I kept my eyes firmly fixed on the ground and inhaled only through my mouth. Some of these people were teachers and nurses. Some were even Gardaí for heaven’s sake! People who - whilst not directly associating with - I would certainly recognise as having a place in the hierarchy of a well-ordered society. But when they congregate under a union banner and demand more than they are deserving of, their transformation approaches deformity.
The unions (along with the workless) must surely take most of the blame for the unfortunate situation the Irish nation finds itself in. When the going was good, they drank the milk of the Celtic Tiger and grew fat and lazy. When the difficulties arrived they refused to adapt to new circumstances. They became parasites on society – much like a diseased bluebottle suckling at the teat of a lactating pig or cow. For hundreds of years, Ireland got along quite fine without unions. Sure, we had the occasional disagreements with our benefactors from across the Irish Sea but for the most part people in this country were happy. When Communism be-spoiled the cultured and enlightened empire of Tsarist Russia, scoundrels the world over got uppity and greedy and joined unions – leading to moral decay in many countries, including our own. And here I was marching with these creatures!
A job is a job and I am a man, but upon having these thoughts I considered abandoning this march. Nonetheless, I continued the hideous trek. Soon the complete lack of discipline these animals posses manifested itself. Some of the more crusty elements of the crowd deliberately departed from the pre-approved route and in an outrageous provocation intruded into one of Dublin prime places of tranquillity, St Stephens Green. These belligerent and unruly crusties should consider themselves lucky that the on-duty Gardaí failed in their duties. Perhaps the presence of traitor Gardaí marching in line with unions forced a hesitation. Surely in less peculiar circumstances, batons would have been produced. Law breakers everywhere must face the full wrath of the State. This situation was no different. Nonetheless, the day will come when the destined gatekeepers of Ireland’s heritage will take up the mantle and provide security, responsibility and, most importantly, retribution.
We reached the end of the march. Here the unions had organised some guest speakers. First up were the sob stories. One speaker had some ridiculous tale about not being able to buy a house and only working a three day week. Was this woman living on cloud cuckoo? She should consider herself lucky having employment at all. Someone else spoke of how there was no hope of finding a job in the “current economic climate”. This particular woman was either too lazy to look or does not have the right attitude. There is a job out there for everyone. All that is required is discipline, stoicism and perseverance – all traditional Irish values. If this woman, and those of her ilk, spent less time moaning at protest marches and more time updating their CV’s this nation would be all the more glorious.
Just as I began to tire of all the left-wing propaganda nonsense a welcome respite was provided. The eminent German Professor Gunther Grun had graciously accepted an invitation to speak. He provided a much needed dose of reality to proceedings. Unfortunately, the nature of the crowd soon revealed itself. Despite the applause that his appearance elicited, it was not long before they began to laugh maniacally at every sensible thing he said. His short appearance was ruined.
After the speakers, some music. The first, a certain Miss Ellaneous, must be complimented for her allusions to Ireland’s glorious Celtic and druidic heritage. Regrettably however,her message was that of urban rebellion. Using the Negro medium of rap, she argued that the poor could dream of a better world. Only, I mused, if they pulled themselves up by their bootstraps and contributed something worthwhile to society. The only dreams this crowd of losers will have are those that occur when they sleep, which by the looks of them is all too often. The less said of the next performer, Jinx Lennon, the better. One word will do: degenerate. Finally, there was a performance by Mundy. Once again, the protestors revealed themselves to be a debauched bunch. The loony left element in the crowd began to mock the man. For the protestors to turn on such a talented artist reveals the moral vacuum that these people inhabit. In the face of such lunacy, it has to be said that Mundy performed heroically.
And that was it. With the last chord Mundy struck the march was over. I had spent the best part of three hours in the company of the basest elements of our nation. All that was left to do was hail a taxi and head straight for the Shelbourne hotel where a few gin and tonics would ease my continuing nausea and where I could hide out until it was time to face the damned youth hostel. Garret O’Gorman is back doing what he does best – composing insightful opinion pieces for the Irish and international media. Today I grace the Scum Gentry with my presence. But soon the Irish Times and Pat Kenny will be grovelling before me, seeking forgiveness. Watch this space.