ColumnistsPaddy Murray

Paddy Murray: Finian's stupid plan for 'victim' smokers has me fuming

Bonkers: Finian McGrath
Bonkers: Finian McGrath

Finian McGrath needs to get himself a nicotine patch – and he needs to get a grip.

He campaigns on behalf of people who suffer from Cystic Fibrosis – a dreadful disease which ruins and ultimately takes lives.

Victims suffer lifelong breathing difficulties.

They have done nothing, not a thing, to cause themselves such agony, difficulty and disability.

The same Finian McGrath campaigns on behalf of smokers, a group of people he seems to think are victims.

Smokers, who blow their hideous fumes into your face as you walk in and out of buildings, who nab the best outdoor spots at every bar and restaurant and fill them with smoke which threatens the health of others; smokers who are now suffering from serious lung disease, whose lives are restricted and who are a drain on the health service. 

Smokers – like me – who did it to themselves. Twelve years after my last puff, I’m out of puff and living with progressive COPD. 

And Finian thinks it should be made easier for people to smoke? 

A junior health minister championing a cancer causing habit? 

What next, Frances Fitzgerald suggesting we leave our doors open so burglars don’t hurt themselves breaking into our homes?

He needs to get a grip.

And then there’s Richard Boyd Barrett. 

Richard, the well-heeled champion of the vulnerable, railed against a weight charge for green bins.

The charge, Rich – I hope you don’t mind if I just call you Rich – means people are not dumping their paper waste and therefore causing damage to the environment.

This is the same Rich who opposes water charges. These are water charges which, yes indeed, would result in people not wasting water and, instead, conserving the precious and expensive resource.

Rich’s objections have nothing to do with the environment! 

If he cared about the environment he’d cycle or walk to the Dáil instead of getting his car fixed at public expense.

It’s all to do with Rich’s great plan to abolish all taxes and replace them with, eh, well he hasn’t quite figured that one out yet. It’s not socialism, it’s populism.

Grip required there, too.

And what about Clare Daly? She thanked her very, very good pal Mick Wallace for his “contribution” in the Dáil.

Shame she couldn’t thank him for his contribution to the Revenue, who he stitched for more than €2m, or his contribution to the people he left high and dry by not paying his bills.

Still, he lobs in his expenses claim every month in the Dáil and thinks people, other than Clare, take him seriously.

Both badly in need of getting a grip.