Sunday, October 12, 2008


Summer time, absolutely Heaven for burglars; families gone away on holidays, tell-tale sign of unoccupied houses an open invitation to enter and pillage. A recent spate of incidents in the Mullaboden-Wellfield area prompted concerned residents to meet and tackle the potential danger of further intrusions. We met primarily to discuss a recent robbery and ‘suspicious’ characters spotted outside another residence but, on realisation that we are now within the umbrella of Naas Garda Station, we decided to consult with the Gardai in Naas, by introducing ourselves and establishing a relationship between the community and the Gardai of Naas.

I know it might seem obvious and there may be other groups who have covered this before but perhaps the following tips could raise awareness of the danger to local readers and make Ballymore Eustace a less attractive place for intruders to invade.

Be Aware! If you see something suspicious, a strange car other suspicious activity out of the ordinary, then please, take the car registration and contact the Gardai in Naas
When contacting the Gardai, ask for the Garda’s name to whom you are speaking and give your own name and address
Use your own judgement when making a complaint to the Gardai – don’t cry wolf………
Analyze your own security needs; check your property is secure – that all locks are secure and that there are no faulty doors or windows latches easy to force. If you have an alarm, make sure it is serviced and in proper working order.
Did you know there is a FREE Security Service offered by Naas Garda Station, a member of the force will come out and assess your property, assess the weaknesses and strengths
Consider installing a monitored alarm if you don’t already have one; don’t skimp here – it is your property you are protecting and well worth the money
If in doubt, don’t delay – if you are unsure as to whether you should call the Garda, it is literally, ‘better to be safe than sorry’…..
Garda Conor Sheehan is the current staff member designated to liaise with the community during this introductory period
Superintendant Pat Mangan is the appropriate party in charge of Naas Garda Station dealing with the area
The advantages of Naas Garda Station now protecting the Ballymore Eustace area are obvious – more personnel, considerable number of marked and unmarked vehicles including monitoring equipment and specialised vans etc

Contact Naas Garda Station at 045 884300, 24 hour service

We are hoping to access a detailed ordinance survey map with all landmarks and townslands listed in the Ballymore area, make at least 3 copies, laminate it and present it to Naas Garda Station so that they are familiar with the names and layout of the area.

I also believe that the community should consider erecting small but visible road signs – not directional signs, but listing the townsland name – and strategically place them at each end of various roads so that visiting Gardai would be able to identify the locality easily, both when on routine patrol or when answering a distress call.

The only way to combat burglaries is to make life more difficult for potential intruders; ‘easy in, easier out’ is the house burglars motto but, by increasing your own home security and slowing down a forced entry/ quick escape with proper serviced alarms, security lighting and generally increasing awareness in the neighbourhood, you are deterring intruders from the area. A heightened degree of communication too will make the area a less attractive patch to plunder.

So please, all residents of Ballymore – be aware, be alert and be vigilant; its your home, your property and your belongings that’s at stake. The sleepier we are, the more we can be compromised.

- Concerned Neighbours of Ballymore Eustace

The Editors would like to note that Blessington Garda Station has previously enjoyed very good communications with the community here in Ballymore Eustace and that we are very grateful to Gardai there for their support in the past. We applaud the attitude of residents in Mullaboden area and trust that Readers will take the points on board and make note of the telephone number of Naas Garda Station for future reference

on passing by- again

Well I hope you are all well satisfied with yourselves now. It’s not as if you were not given enough warnings. Tireless and meaningful efforts by Junior Minister Dick Roche and others of that ilk and all you could do was ignore them. Vote No to Lisbon and the sky will fall in. You have no one to blame except yourselves.
So what are we going to do now?.
Well that nice Mr Sarkozy is of the opinion that we have absolutely no alternative but another referendum. As the Lisbon Treaty is supposedly to enable a more democratic European Union isn’t it peculiar that the democratic wishes of the Irish electorate are now seemingly to be ignored. Apparently the No vote was the wrong kind of democratic response and we are going to have to do it again so that we can see the error of our ways and respond with the correct kind of democracy. Knowing how bloody minded the electorate can be when they think they are being forced into something I can see an even larger turnout in another referendum and an even larger No vote. More of the wrong kind of democracy.
And yet there has been hardly a mention of Lisbon for the last few weeks. The Government and the other supporting parties express themselves a bit shocked by our response and unable to understand how we could ignore all their advice. Maybe if they had bothered to explain the whole thing properly we could have had a different result. Instead of setting the agenda they spent the last few weeks of the campaign reacting to the No camp. Instead of explaining why some of the No camps assertions were dubious or even untrue they blustered about misinformation and engaged in character assassination and expected the ordinary Joe Soap not to notice. As the saying goes “ if you’re explaining, you’re losing”.
The Yes camp’s posters were basically a dry run for next years elections, with large photographs of your local T.D. telling you to accept that they knew best so you should vote Yes, and that appeared to be the full extent of the information they were willing to impart.
I suppose their reticence to discuss it may be because they are still too shell shocked to talk much about it but it is probable that Lisbon is beginning to pale in comparison to everything else that seems to be heading for the fan. Despite all the years of plenty it now appears that the cupboard is bare. In fact we may end up being lucky just to hang on to the cupboard itself.
And why is this all happening now?.
One reason has to be the almost limitless spending over the last decade which was based on nothing but political expediency. Whenever a problem arose the Government refused to stand up to vested interests and just threw money at them. Hundreds of millions wasted on Health Service and Garda computers. Millions and millions given to consultants to solve problems, some of which were originally caused by the same consultants. Government Ministers with large teams of highly paid advisors so that there will always be someone lower down to blame for something.
A health service, which despite billions of euro being spent on it, is still unable to provide enough front line staff to deal safely and adequately with patients, and which seems to spend a huge amount of its time and resources lurching from one crisis to another without ever learning any lessons.
A supposed benchmarking process for public servants, the deliberations of which the government refuses to make public and which awarded average increases of almost nine per cent, this increase in addition to the increases they were receiving under the national wage agreements. And don’t forget that the cost of eleven hundred million euro was not a one off cost but a base cost added onto the public pay bill ad infinitum

Mr Cowen’s solution to current financial woes is to announce cutbacks, or rather, a realignment of resources. The HSE announces five hundred million of cutbacks. Decentralisation is to be slowed down until finances permit a resumption of the full plan. The recent pay rises for T.D.s, Ministers and top public servants is to be postponed.
I am sorry but this all looks a little to late and a lot like window dressing. There seems to be a total lack of joined up thinking, despite all the advisors. Postponing the rises is basically a publicity stunt because the amounts that will be saved are ultimately miniscule. Slowing down decentralisation is a sham if the OPW are to be allowed to go ahead with one hundred and fifty million euro worth of contracts because the contracts are already signed, rather than renegotiating them. The message is not getting to other departments if the Department of Agriculture intends to spend two hundred and eighty thousand euro to update its website because they need “ a redevelopment of the Departments website and intranet including the implementation of a content management solution”.
I find it peculiar in the extreme that when the Celtic Tiger was in full roar we were constantly told that all of our good fortune was the result of the sagacity and wisdom of our Government, even though we could all see the huge amount of waste that was being ignored. Now that things are on the downward slope it is all the fault of other people and nothing to do with the very same politicians. Our current perilous state is because of global events yet when the same global events were aiding us there was no mention of them. If ever a saying was appropriate surely its “ success has a hundred fathers but failure is an orphan”.

While the price of oil and gas continue their inexorable rise I am at a loss to understand the rise in the price of coal. Apparently coal has risen by almost one hundred per cent in the last two years and yet I can see no real reason for this other than profiteering. I can accept that input costs for coal producers have risen but their labour costs have remained almost static . Is it a case of the producers deciding to get on the band wagon and make hay while the sun shines?. This kind of rise can only act to force more people to use environmentally friendly ways of heating their homes and this is no bad thing. It must also be the reason that in its infinite wisdom the Department of the Environment has decided to reduce further the grants available for solar heating appliances. Bloody Typical!

All for now. Mike Edmonds.

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