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Pig at the Trough

15/01/12

Alasdair McDonnellThere are over 110,000 people unemployed in the six counties. Over 80,000 children are living in poverty. As harrowing as these figures may be, spare a thought for that oft maligned group also on the verge of sinking into penury – our politicians.

One man has been brave enough to champion their cause: blundering SDLP leader Alasdair McDonnell MP, MLA. According to Alasdair:

“We need to be very careful that our assemblies don’t turn into millionaire clubs again. Politics is not a job for life, people should be encouraged to come in and go out. It is important that ordinary people should be able to leave their job or trade to spend a period as representatives, and also be able to go back to their previous life without landing in poverty.”

The child poverty and unemployment figures are shocking, though sadly not surprising. We live in a time of global economic collapse, with working people around the world staring into the financial abyss. In the midst of this catastrophe this career politician, who’s been around for longer than anyone cares to remember, can think of nothing else than squeezing that extra pound out of the taxpayer to line his own pocket.

McDonnell warns against ‘millionaire clubs’. A brief look at his own financial interests would indicate that he’d be quite comfortable there. As well as his wage as an MP and an MLA (£65,766), with expenses averaging well over £150,000, McDonnell also has

  • A farm in county Antrim, from which rental income is received.
  • A house in Belfast, from which rental income is received.
  • The Ormeau Health Centre and adjacent property, from which rental income is received.
  • Arrow Travel, Belfast.
  • A holiday home in Glenarriffe, county Antrim.
  • He is a director of Medevol, a medical trials company.
  • He is waged as a part time GP.

McDonnell’s constituents would not be surprised at his callous disregard in the face of their hardship. He is, after all, the same man who blamed the people of the Lower Ormeau Road for bringing upon themselves the massacre in Sean Graham’s bookmakers, which left five dead and a community traumatised, for refusing to lie down and accept the British state in Ireland, doing his best to absolve the unionist death squad and their handlers of any responsibility for the attack.

One of the weapons used in the attack was later handed back to the death squad responsible by the RUC. Has McDonnell raised this with his paymasters in London? Has he ever called for an inquiry into the matter? No. He remains content to blame the victims.

McDonnell embodies some of the worst aspects of Irish political culture: the vulgar money grubbing of the gombeen man coupled with the lickspittle mentality and moral cowardice of the shoneen. A truly disgusting individual.

 

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