Sunday, April 19, 2009



3 to 4pm
4 to 5pm
5 to 6pm
6 to 7pm
7 to 8.30pm

With over 70 members attending each week at the Band Hall, and as the club moves forward, we ask please for your time:
No experience required
Sense of Humour Recommended!


Every Thursday from 8.30pm at the b
Band Hall.
No membership fee – Arrive and play
Beginners welcome
Enq. 0877557332

The Under 18s at the club will play friendly matches against Kilcullen, Naas & Ryston (Newbridge) in the coming weeks and as great progress has been shown by all on the team we can look forward to some very exciting matches!
Best of luck to all.

A new venture for the under 15s at the club with news of our first competitive match in the “Community Games” at Confey on Sunday 24th January 2009. With over 60 members of our club being “under 15” it was going to be hard to pick just 6 players and 4 subs to represent our club. To the very many members who did not get there we remind you: “keep trying, keep improving and keep enjoying the game!! Your chance will come in time”. To the team who made it to Confey “You done us very proud! You all played your very best and the games will be well remembered”!


The community games Badminton consists of 5 matches – Each match consists of “Best of three games to 21 points” (unlike previous years where one side must hold serve to score points, the rules were changed to “speed up” games and now each time the shuttle hits the floor – a point is awarded) All games played at Confey on January 24th were fast and hard fought for. With long rallies and great skill, it was enjoyable for all and many lessons were learned. The scores were close and in complete honesty all five matches could have gone either way. Many of the games went to 17 – 17 and thrilling tie breaks at 20 -20 *(side must win by 2 points). The players never gave up and played the very best they could give. Proud family members Noelle, Henry, Stephen, Lorraine, Vinnie, Emma, & Catherine were there to enjoy, and enjoy they did!!
Trish, Jarlath, Eabha and Katie (future badminton star too!) also supported our first competition.
Confey is a large hall with 4 full courts to play on, our opponents were friendly and fair in all matches. We all enjoyed it thank them and wish them ever success in the final.

Boys Doubles Patrick Langan 21 – 17 Confey
Harry Murphy 21 – 9 Confey Confey 1 Bme 0

Girls Doubles Amy Kelly 21 -13 Confey
Joanna Burke Hayes 21 – 17 Confey Confey 2 Bme 0

1st Mixed Lucy Field 24 -22 Bme
Ryan Wilson Black 21 -12 Bme Confey 2 Bme1

2nd Mixed Amy Kelly 23-21 Confey Confey 2 Bme2
Harry Murphy 21 -9 Bme
22-20 Bme

3rd Mixed Joanna Burke Hayes 21 – 19 Confey
Patrick Langan 21 -18 Confey Confey3 Bme2

The Six players and “patient” sub Enda Stewart Byrne received a bronze medal for coming third in our first community games. Well done to all for a great display of games and great team spirit.

on passing by- again

What exactly are the petrol companies at? To the best of my knowledge the price of a barrel of oil has been holding remarkably steady for the last number of weeks and yet petrol prices at the pumps are showing an almost daily rise. One garage I pass frequently was selling unleaded for 90.9 cents a litre three weeks ago and today they are charging 104.9 a litre. That’s a fifteen per cent rise in three weeks. According to the National Consumer Agency garage prices are not in any way controlled and the Governments strategy is to allow the open market to apply competition to keep prices down. If this is the case then it is hard not to believe that some sort of cartel arrangement is in place because there is almost no difference in prices between garages in certain areas. Allowing the market to set the price is all very well if real competition is taking place but this looks just like good old fashioned profiteering to me.

Another week of Government statistics to gladden the heart. Is there no end to the bad news? I thought it was bad enough when Brian Cowen admitted that he hadn’t even bothered to read the Lisbon Treaty but the revelation that Brian Lenihan could spend megabucks on a report on the banks from PricewaterhouseCoopers and then not read it is staggering. Not only did he not read it but his officials, who apparently did read it, could not be bothered to tell him about large sums going in and out of Anglo Irish before their annual audit. This was not in the reports remit but PWC thought it sufficiently important to put it in the report anyway. And then it is ignored? Why would anyone waste one and a half billion of taxpayers’ money on a bank that was obviously going down the tubes without seeking out the best advice and heeding it? It seems to me that senior officials in the Department of Finance feel that they can run the whole show without reference to their Minister or anyone else.
Then again there almost seems to be an incentive to run something badly. Our recent Financial Regulator, Pat Neary, presided over an unprecedented lending flurry by the banks. Profit, or perceived profit, came before all. Diligence, care and commonsense were all thrown out the window and yet Mr Neary sat on his hands and held his counsel. Things that the rest of us would think scandalous were all known to the regulator but he thought better of telling anyone about them, especially the Government. In another jurisdiction this would have led to him being shown the door but what happens here? Not only is he given a golden handshake of four hundred and twenty eight thousand euro, but he also gets a lump sum of two hundred thousand for agreeing to retire early. Just to really rub our noses in it he is also in line for a pension of one hundred and forty two thousand. Imagine a pension that’s almost four times the national average wage. If this is the reward for helping to screw up the economy is it any wonder these people seem to have no incentive to do the jobs they are appointed to do. And if you are waiting for anyone in Government to moan about this kind of payoff don’t hold your breath. Why upset the apple cart when you might be in line for the same kind of largesse. Despite the public wringing of hands they all seem to be in it for what they can get. Witness Labours Brendan Howlin doing the right thing. Despite his decades in the Dail he has now decided that he should resign his teacher’s job. He doesn’t feel he has done anything wrong by holding on to the job for over twenty years. He was entitled to it and he did not receive his teacher’s salary while striding the corridors of power. So why hold on to the job? Because there is a pension, which has been building up nicely for all the years he was missing from the classroom. This will add to the twenty thousand pension he already receives as a former Minister for the Environment. These together will be joined by his T.D.s pension when he eventually retires, at which point he will also receive a nice little lump sum. But lets not begrudge him the few shillings. He probably deserves it all for being part of a political system which has gotten us to where we are.

Another perk of politicians is the way they can reward good service or even friendship. Take a former Secretary General in the Department of Foreign Affairs, Dermot Gallagher. Mr Gallagher is a longstanding friend of Minister Dermot Ahern. Mr Ahern as you will remember served a number of years as Minister for Foreign Affairs.
Mr Gallagher recently retired, with the obligatory lump sum and a nice little pension of two and a half grand a week. However he has now been brought out of retirement and appointed as the new chairman of the Garda Ombudsmans Commission, at a salary reputed to be over one hundred and fifty thousand euro. And who appointed him. Surprise surprise none other than Minister Ahern. I am not saying Mr Gallagher won’t make a fine Chairman, or that he is unqualified for the job, but in my opinion the whole thing stinks to high heaven. What is more annoying is that Mr Ahern has brushed aside concerns of public disquiet by declaring that its his business who he appoints and no one else’s. Sound familiar?
This continuing saga of apparent cronyism is even harder to take when Ministers are telling us we face into an uncertain future and will all have to tighten our belts. They are the people who were on watch as the banks and certain developers were robbing the country blind to satisfy their greed for profit and ego and yet it is now the ordinary worker who is expected to pick up the tab.
I know the recent hike in pension contributions for public servants was seen by them as the thin end of the wedge, and I believe that some sort of ceiling should have been introduced to protect those on the lower salaries but they have to remember that for the most part they have a guaranteed job for life and a state ( i.e. taxpayer ) guaranteed index linked pension. These are not entitlements that most workers in the private sector enjoy. At the present time most private sector workers would settle for just holding on to their jobs and worry about the pension later. Notwithstanding that, the Minister for Finance could increase his coffers by taking a sharp knife to the salaries of the nine thousand plus public servants who, as well as the benefits, enjoy a salary of over one hundred thousand per annum. Even a ten percent cut would give him almost another billion to squander.

All for now. Mike Edmonds. Feb 09.

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