Saturday, 14 September 2013

Neanderthal Politics

In the essays presented to Father Brendan Purcell, there is an account of evidence to suggest that politics was already a feature of society at the time of Neanderthal Man. Interesting.

The Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources here in Ireland, Pat Rabbitte wishes to replace the television licence with a broadcasting charge, which everyone is liable to pay. When challenged that not everyone has a television and not all of these possess i-pads or i-phones, he said in characteristic arrogance that he doubted such cavemen existed in Ireland.

As a matter of fact, people who don't rely on television do exist in Ireland and given that they read and communicate more than your average TV addict, Mr Rabbitte was made look very silly in a series of letters on the topic in The Irish Times, a paper which is normally quite enthusiastic about the Labour Party. Wouldn't be the first time. That politicians break election promises is a given, but Mr Rabitte admitted that promises were made despite an awareness that they couldn't be kept.

But has the Minister ever read the Parable of the Cave in Plato's Republic? It is the chained cave dwellers that are compelled to watch the unreal images on the wall and they that laugh at those who see the real world and try to convince them otherwise. The correspondence reminds me of that and suggested one politician has yet to move beyond the Neanderthal stage.

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