This one won’t be for the easily offended and is probably going to be personal and foolish on my part. I was up late last night, unable to sleep with the heat and my depraved mind had sad, bitter, angry short man thoughts while reading some posts on Boards.ie and some of the Irish news from the last couple of weeks. There’s quite a bit about Ireland that was getting to me before I made my move. Some of the bigger issues were corruption in public sector, overly generous social welfare and a big one for me due to unfortunately having a lot of dealings with the colleges in Galway, was the third level education system.
So yesterday I went into a place called Target which is a grocery store here. The guy at the till gave the usual pleasentries you’d expect here. “Hello sir, how are you today?” So anyway he asked me how my weekends had been going and I replied with a “good thanks, how about yours?”. He said seeming full of life, with a big smile on his face that he just finished his first year of college so he was really happy that he could party a bit this summer. He finished college and was relieved. Are you serious Bro!? How could that be? Now before anybody gets back at me with I worked all through college blah blah blah, I know a few who actually did this but I have known many more who did not or just worked the summer with their parents there to make up the difference. I can get that, some people are luckier than others and who am I to judge. Sure it’s a bitter pettiness on my part and I can accept that. This young guy was working away and relieved to be finished college because and I’m sure as some would not realize back in Ireland. When you go to college in a course with lots of hours of lectures (more than 19 hours a week!!), labs, Projects etc. and work full time or close to full time hours to support yourself the summer is actually more of a release because you only have to focus on one thing and might get 1 or 2 days off a week some weeks, whilst in college some people like myself did not get any days off.
So later that night I was on Boards and there was a whole bunch of posts in reply to a lady who posted saying she had just finished college for a second time and didn’t want to have to leave. A concept so ridiculous that there was a movie called Van Wilder a few years ago with that as the premise of the fuckin’ movie!! But in Ireland it’s more than possible because the system caters for a certain group of shitheads with a sense of entitlement that’s bigger than my gargantuan Mickey. The replies were a long the lines of why not do a masters or PhD, her reply to this was that she doesn’t think she can afford it if she doesn’t get some special grant. There was suggestions that not everybody should have to pursue work after college and pursuit of education is fulfilling and could be a life choice and everybody should be granted the means to do that with their life if they so choose. Are people that fucked in the head that they expect to be handed oppurtunities like that for the mere fact they were born under the Irish flag? A lot of people did take for granted these great benefits available to them, forgetting somebody had to pay for it, and now when they are decreased people piss and moan, seemingly still not realizing that the money has to come from somewhere. It always seemed to me cuts to benefits, were highlighted more than increases in the income tax rates. There were student protests and protests against all different cuts but not much for was said about the increase in income tax or the introduction of the Universal Social Charge…It’s just aggravating. What have you done with your life? How much have you contributed? Do you think what you’ve contributed is enough to warrant you being allowed to mooch off others who do wish to pursue a job after college?..I just don’t get it!
Then on top of all of this I heard somebody I know studying for a Psychology PhD is seeking out participants for a study. A study I know that has been carried out with all the self righteous ethics of a peadophile priest. I have no doubt that the system will fail and this person will succeed despite himself/herself. I helped with this study and feel terrible, I have always tried to be a good person, help people out when they are in need, be a good friend and I try to hold myself to a high standard, I’ve made significant sacrifices in the last few years for the betterment of others around me, in an effort to be selfless so others would profit more as I deemed they were in a position which meant they needed “it” more than me. That’s not me trying to be condescending, it’s just that I don’t have kids, a wife or a mortgage so I know I can make do with less. Against my better judgement, I helped try to get participants for this study and it has turned out I recruited the participants under completely false pretences and for that I feel awful. One of my best friends was one of these people I tried to recruit and luckily he had the good sense not to trust the person carrying out the study and didn’t participate, I wish I had that clarity of judgement. But I didn’t and now I have to live with knowing I helped to further corrupt a horribly broken system. To anybody who I approached and got to participate, I’m sorry.
So here I am casting stones again. Like a lot of people who are pissed off with Ireland. Right now I’ll still identify as being allowed to voice an opinion there without getting the outsider looking in type hatred for my views, like the Yank in the movie The Field, particularly because in my last 3 months I probably paid more in taxes than a lot of people there have in years and I paid a butt load over the last 5 years so my pocket is still feeling the time I spent working there. This part might sound crazy and it’s not something I told too many people, even those very close to me but I tried to do my little parts to make a difference. Making complaints against things I thought were corrupt and wrong and at the same time if I received good service from somebody I would talk to the manager and compliment that staff member. Of course that would never be enough, there’s nothing one person can do. As long as a large percentage of Irish people are willing to cheat, take shortcuts or even just sit back, I’m afraid history is doomed to repeat itself, there’s no point in getting more money into the country until the system is changed and people change their spending habits and attitude. I love you Ireland, I wish we could recapture the spirit of the early 90’s and have the wealth of the Celtic Tiger, only with no corruption and a general higher sense of morality.
P.S It’s not just anti-NUIG by the way, I just have had more exposure to the GMIT and NUIG. I’m hoping to get a guest blogger to contribute about his experience doing a masters, he’d like to hold off until he finishes though as not to make himself a target. I won’t be pushing him to do it either so he might change his mind and I wouldn’t blame him as my dealings with NUIG have made me believe the Universities in Ireland are a mafia type organization! Some people reading this will get that, others will not. Either way, I’m sticking to it. LOVE YA DADDY!
I just blogged my brains out,