Sunday, March 29, 2009

A Thuggery of English forwards

Former England hooker Brian Moore now works as a commentator on rugby, and was working yesterday on the BBC match coverage of the EDF semi-finals.
As a player, he came across as arrogant, aggressive and generally unpleasant – he was everything you love to hate in an English forward.

So, during the commentary, his co-presenter (name unknown) mentioned that, before the match, Moore had bumped into his former England pack colleagues Wade Dooley and Paul Ackford. Not a trio to be messed with, he opined.

“What would be the collective noun for that group?” asked Moore.
“A thuggery”, came the immediate response.

In all fairness to Moore, he immediately acknowledged the quality of the wit and, for about 15-20 seconds, he could be heard chuckling in the background while his Wildean co-presenter continued with the match commentary.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Vegetables on Leinster Lawn

First Lady Michelle Obama plans to use part of the White House lawn to grow vegetables.

Could this be a direct result of the Taoiseach’s visit on St Patrick’s day?

Did Mr Cowen let it slip that Leinster lawn has, for the past decade, been dedicated exclusively to the accommodation of Irish vegetables?

Footnote: Published as a letter in the Irish Times, much to my surprise.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Shane Ross's IN&M & BOI dilemma

Shane Ross is on the horns of a dilemma

Picture the scene: Shane Ross in front of the wife’s full-length bedroom mirror, for the umpteenth time practising his impromptu and unrehearsed verbal assault planned for the Bank of Ireland board at the banks EGM at the end of this month.

His climactic finale is a call for the Governor, Richard Burrows, and the entire board to publicly offer an abject apology to shareholders as a preamble to tendering their collective resignations.

Then, on Morning Ireland, he hears the dreaded news:
Independent News & Media - O’Reilly out, O’Brien's people in.

What to do?
Denis O’Brien will, as a director, be sitting at that Bank of Ireland top table. Ross has already used his poison pen in the Sindo to besmirch the reputation of the new power behind the throne. Will he risk attacking O’Brien for his role in Bank of Ireland?

On the evidence to date, Ross will do a major rewrite of that Bank of Ireland address.

After all, Ross has self-serving history in this regard. He’s always brown-nosed Sir Anthony, regardless of his many business failure (e.g. Fitzwilton, WW, now IN&M in danger) or scandal (e.g. Rennicks payments featuring in tribunal).

Ross has never mentioned that IN&M share price has collapsed by over 95% since the peak about 2 years ago – almost as bad as a bank.

Never a critical word about the perennially loss-making London Independent, another expensive Sir Anthony vanity project.

For a man who’s always rabbiting on about the incestuous nature of Irish boardrooms, Ross has never commented critically on the IN&M boardroom, where for a long period Sir Anthony was both Chairman & Chief Executive, with a bloated board filled with O’Reilly family members and old and faithful retainers who were never likely to ask an awkward question.

So I’m betting that the valiant Senator will do a major rewrite of his speech, removing from it any implied criticism of the independent directors, which would include Denis O’Brien.
Any attack will be focused specifically on Governor Burrows and the Executive directors.

Frankly, I hope O’Brien fires Ross and gets someone who actually knows something business and economics to replace the populist tosser.

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Cromwell spells it out for Fianna Fail

Wouldn’t those FFers just get on your wick!

Minister Noel Dempsey’s Ard Fheis annoyance at supposed comparisons being made between Fianna Fail and the bankers is greatly exceeded by the annoyance of the bankers I know, who feel they’ve had enough abuse heaped on them without having to endure the odium of this new charge.

In making his historical references, Minister Dempsey bravely took the risk of being reminded of Cromwell’s famous injunction to parliament: “You have sat too long here for any good you have been doing. Depart, I say, and let us have done with you. In the name of God, go!”

Now that seems quite appropriate for this Government.