Sunday, June 21, 2009

Frances, can you put the list of sponsors into 2 columns, please in bullet point and the list of winners into double columns also

Ballymore Eustace
Community Development Association Ltd

The recent raffle to fund Tidy Town’s projects was a great success and a cheque for €2000 was handed over to Mr. Eric Firth of the Tidy Town’s committee at our recent meeting. We must thank most sincerely the following who very generously sponsored or supplied our prizes:

Mr. Willie Doyle, Newbridge Cutlery who donated €500
Mr. Tom O’Keefe – Naas Insurance
Punchestown Racecourse
Bill Delaney
Mary Deegan
Kildare Betting
The Thatch
Ballymore Inn
Poulaphouca Hotel
Kieran Langan
Rose B. O’Donoghue
Ardenode Hotel
Gallery & Gifts
Gerry Blake
Fogarty’s Quik Pick
Elizabeth’s Hair Salon
Pat Murphy Pub
Ollie Deegan
Mick Murphy’s Pub
Kay Nolan

We would also like to thank all the ticket sellers for their Trojan work – well done! And all those who supported our raffle by buying tickets – “Go raibh mile maith agat!”

The Winners are as follows:

Bill Delaney
Tony Lehart
Henry Murphy
Pat & Mary Browne
Edwina Deegan
Ethna Miley
Ailish Massey
Aoife Ablett
Gus Kavanagh
A.Doyle, Poulaphouca
Michael Gill
Brendan Nolan
Mary Chalkey
Niamh Lawless
Mary Murphy
Ally Conroy
Paul Murphy
Finola Dunworth
Paddy Hudson
Breda Hudson
Ben Noone

We also hosted a Children’s Party and Fancy Dress in the Resource Centre. This was a great success and enjoyed by all (young and not so young!) No child went home without a prize! Sincere thanks to Elizabeth of Elizabeth’s Hair Salon for her kind sponsorship of the Fancy Dress and to last year’s Punchestown Festival Committee for their donation towards the party.

Winners of the Fancy Dress were: Kate Gilroy, Eabha Gilroy and Des Horan – see photo attached

- Ballymore Eustace Community Development Association Ltd

Across the bottom of page with two small boxed adverts for Car Boot & Vincent de Paul
Enable Ireland take to the streets of New York!
Marathon to raise monies where it is needed most…
The world’s greatest marathon, the ING New York Marathon is an amazing journey through the streets of New York taking in the 5 boroughs of New York. From Staten Island to Central Park, over 40,000 participants and 2 million spectators will urge you on from the sidelines - crossing the finish line is an incredible and thrilling experience. This year’s marathon takes place on Sunday 1st November. Places are filling up fast for the Enable Ireland tour offered in conjunction with Sports Travel International. If you have ever thought about participating in a Marathon, this is definitely one to seriously consider. As part of the Enable Ireland New York Marathon Tour 09 you receive guaranteed race entry, flights, accommodation, transfers, insurance, transfer to the start line and celebration dinner. Flights are available from Dublin or Shannon on Friday 30th October returning on Wednesday 4th November. For more details and to book your place call Willie Callaghan at 045 846108 or email

Car Boot Sale
At Cross & Passion College, Kilcullen on Sunday, 7th June
Gates open for set-up at 9am, sale through to 3pm.
One car space €10:: One van space €15.

Vincent de Paul Shop appeal for all good quality clothes, bric-brac, books etc
Open: 9.30am till 3.30pm Monday to Friday with new opening time on Saturday from 10am till 12pm. Wishing all our friends and customers a great Summer!

on passing by- again

I am really beginning to wonder if this Government and the HSE are so fatally flawed that they are unable to get anything at all done properly. The recent report into the tragedy in Monageer, in which a young man appears to have killed his wife and children, and then taken his own life, is in my opinion a travesty of what a report of this type should be. The word whitewash springs immediately to mind. In what has become symptomatic of this administration it seems that no one is to blame, no one could have known what was about to happen, so therefore no one can be held accountable.
How can a report of this type ever hope to accomplish anything when the team responsible for its creation start off by telling us that they had “endeavoured not to attribute fault to or comment adversely on any individual”. What is the point of a report into a tragedy like this if the team start with the premise that no one is going to be found guilty of not doing their job properly. From what I can see the only people found in any way culpable are the Gardai, and yet only the Gardai seem to have taken any interest over the weekend in question. Despite the fact that the Gardai attempted to get the HSE involved during the weekend the professionals in the HSE couldn’t be bothered to get involved until the Monday, by which time the family were dead. Given this I find it deeply unfair to hold the Gardai involved up for criticism.
How are we meant to learn anything to prevent future tragedies when no one is to blame for anything? If this was indeed true then why waste money even setting up an enquiry and waiting for a report. When you read that none of the so called professionals is even named the whole thing just seems farcical. Why is this blanket of anonymity extended to the very people whose role and actions are under scrutiny? The report even goes as far as to apologise for the fact that some people might be able to work out the identities of some of the people involved, How are we to implement the recommendations of the report when loads of them have been blanked out?
If the report found that HSE staff or others were not doing the job they were paid to do, even if this was not entirely of their own making, then we deserve and need to know. If the authors of the report felt that some things would have to change in the future, then again we deserve and need to know. It really is hard not to treat the whole exercise as a whitewash behind which the HSE can hide. The Taoiseach has said that the findings were blacked out on legal advice and that there was nothing the Government could do about it and yet in the past this problem has been overcome by using Privilege to read the report out in the Dail. I don’t believe the Government, or its legal advisors, could have been unaware of this so why wasn’t this facility availed of? Did they really think that no one was going to complain or have they just gotten to the stage where they really don’t give a fiddlers?
More proof of the incompetence of the HSE, as if any more was needed, surfaced last week. Head man, Brendan Drumm, admitted that he was partly responsible for a major blunder after negotiating a new contract for hospital consultants. Up to this if a patient with private health insurance was admitted to hospital by a consultant the hospital was able to charge the patients insurance for all their costs. It now emerges that if the patient is admitted by a consultant who has taken the new contract to work full time for the public service the hospital will be unable to charge the insurance company as the patient is deemed to be a public patient being admitted by a public consultant. Professor Drumm took some responsibility as, in his own words, he was as central to the negotiations on the new contract as anybody else. He admitted that the HSE is now looking at a potential loss of fifty million euro because of the loophole. What is curious, and not a little troubling, is that the Irish Hospital Consultants Association has publicly stated that they foresaw this loophole during contract talks over a year ago and had brought it to the attention of the HSE team. Professor Drumm denies this and says they foresaw a different problem but will not tell us what the other problem was. If I am reading this correctly then Professor Drumm is calling the consultants association liars, which does not sound terribly professional. If this is indeed his position he should tell us what the other problem was and let us make up our own minds. Bad and all as this is it actually got worse. The Minister for Health, Mary Harney, has insisted that this is neither a loophole or a blunder. It is , she says, actually deliberate Government policy. This I find strange for a number of reasons. Is she calling Professor Drumm a liar? Is she seriously trying to tell us that in these financially straitened times it is Government policy to cause the HSE a loss of fifty million euro? The Minister has qualified her comments and says that she wants to remove any financial incentive for a public hospital to treat a private patient. She is of the opinion that people with private health insurance were for too long given preferential treatment and the taxpayer should no longer be funding this. Is it not obvious to the Minister that the days when people on private insurance took precedence are long gone? The current third world system is incapable of treating patients whether they have insurance or not. Has it slipped the Ministers tiny mind that most people with private insurance are taxpayers? As the person with oversight for one of the largest insurers, VHI, I am sure she is well aware of just how much the private insurers are propping up the HSE. Does she want us all to give up our insurance and become public patients? Given the current level of service this would cause an unmitigated disaster and the Minister is well aware of this. From what I can read into the whole sorry situation the Ministers officials have once again partaken of a glorious cock up and rather than put her hand up and admit to the blunder she is deliberately putting her own spin on the whole mess in the hope that it will all go away. In a war of words between Mary Harney on one side, and Professor Drumm and the consultants on the other, I know who I believe.

I was absolutely delighted to hear that Minister Hanafin was absolutely delighted to find that job losses in the private sector are now running at only a hundred a day. Perhaps if the public services matched the private sector pain we would all get out of the mess a bit quicker.
All for now. Mike Edmonds. May 09.

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