If you didn’t laugh , you’d cry salt tears.
More than anything it is the self aggrandising lack of humility.The barely contained smirk… the very belief in this erzatz- serious all-together ..backs to the wall…No Surrender, re -creation of the Origin Myth…In the end , it is the puffed -up pomposity of our rapidly fattening politicians and stony-eyed ….shark -eyed , puppet masters pulling their backcoat strings that makes me want to stifle a huge bellylaugh.
The unionist “Family” have gathered again around a table as if the past one hundred years had never existed , to re-sign their declaration that “Time Would Stand Still Forever” because their collective sinews and coursing blood would have no other result.They really could do no other…God help us!! These residents from Sleepy Hollow have arisen to the glare of the Twenty First Century like some mouldering collection of Rip Van Winkles, bleary-eyed, cobwebbed, astounded and perplexed at their place in this sparkling new century.
I watched the televisual coverage as a film-dissolve was made between the grainy , murky black and white of the early Twentieth Century to the glossy digital NOW.No one split their wrists with a rusty razor and dipped their crow quill nibs into their own blood to sign their compliance ,but the new- fangled , “biro” propelling pens fairly scribbled anyway. The same old, same old. Unionism was in the process of circling its wagons once again . Backs were against the wall because they weren’t allowed to walk along a road or fly lots of flags, or make huge bonfires .Adjusting to the 21st century was obviously not an easy thing.
That same old dour pomposity and dead -eyed threat that somehow they were going to re-make the world in their strange old-fashioned image was on display once more . They had gradually become aware that they were unable to negotiate in any effectual way, so they decided to give it up and play about with street politics again. It’s that time of year when everyone is at a loose end and government is suspended for a few months,anyway.They appear to be on safer ground when real politics are not an issue..

Unfortunately no amount of talking to themselves rather than talking to the rest of the world will change the bare facts that this is not now 1912 and these old men have brought themselves to this point in Ireland’s history by an act of self-manipulation. A sort of political masturbatory onanism.
Behind all this pumped -up pomposity , is of course , a collection of ageing men with their wee fat pot bellies, hairy arses and a world -prize collection of knobbly knees. These are not alpha males or Nobel prize-winning political auteurs. This sorry collection is the best representation of a whole swathe of our society that we can produce .It really doesn’t look too good.
Somehow , we are being asked to believe that all those life -affirming comedic and comedy moments of the entire 20th century, that have in great part, shaped the conscience and outlook of the 21st century ,have never happened . They want us to believe that Chapin’s little tramp never swung his cane .Laurel and Hardy never pushed that piano up the hill. The Marx Brothers never turned “Society” upside down. Abbott and Costello , Martin and Lewis never existed . Sergeant Bilko never inducted that chimpanzee into the army! Monty Python and Spike Milligan never stuck a pitchfork into the huge balloon that was the Establishment and made us very aware that all this pomposity was so much hot.stinking, squeaky air held in a wobbling , squishy sac. “Mad” magazine and “Private Eye” never appeared on the news stands of the nation.
It really is time to bring back “Spitting Images” and give them all a good kick up the comedy backside . These foolish politicians are beginning to believe their own myths again. They should all be made to watch a boxset of Monty Python’s Flying Circus and get themselves an unreality check.

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