The Heelers Diaries

the fantasy world of ireland's greatest living poet

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Location: Kilcullen (Phone 087 7790766), County Kildare, Ireland

Saturday, September 19, 2009

the monica leech laugh in

Little Boy: I hate Granny's guts.
Frustrated Father: Shut up and keep chewing.

moviola

Coffee with Crissie, also known as the Spanish Onion, in the Cafe Insomnia near Trinity College.
She is full of the joys.
"Hey James," she gushes. "I've just been to see The Inglorious Basterds. It was amazing. There's something I want to ask you. Will you come see it with me?"
My handsome preraphaelite features attain a marblish hue.
"I will go to The Inglorious Basterds with you," I answer in measured tones. "I will go even though I am sure it is a worthless piece of subprime violence porno designed explicitly to debauch the unwary. I will go even though I know Quentin Tarentino has absolutely nothing to say. I will go even though my assessment of Tarentino has always been that his films are without merit and that they have played a significant role in the derangements we currently see manifesting in people's behaviour across our culture and the world. I will go even though I see his films as being wholly permeated by a dire and worthless negation of human values and discernment. I will go with you to the Tarantino film. Just as long as you come to a prayer group meeting with me."
There was a pulse in the universe.
It was as though the whole cafe fell silent.
Quoth the Onion: "A prayer meeting? No way."
"Then I'm not going to see Tarentino," shot back me.
"But it's completely different situation," said Crissie.
"How is it different?" wondered I.
She sighed.
"I've heard all that religion stuff before," she began. "All through school. Priests and nuns. Blah, blah, blah."
"Mmm," I nodded. "And I've seen all Tarentino's violence fetishes before. All his onanistic stimulations tailored towards people who have no critical faculties. His crass self indulgent masturbatory juvenalia masquerading as creativity. I've seen it for what it is. But I'll go to another one. Just for you. Just as long as you come to a prayer meeting with me."
"But this is a new film," she erupted. "It will be interesting. The prayer meeting will be just the same old thing. This film takes a lot of different viewpoints. It gives different perspectives. It's really intelligently done. It's really creative. There's so much in there."
"Ah yes," murmurs the noble Heelers. " And I assure you this prayer meeting will have lots of different things in there too. Lots of different perspectives. And maybe even the real presence of the creator of the universe who gave you life and loves you and wants you to be free. Oh you'll see it all at the prayer meeting. There's one guy who bursts into foreign languages and he doesn't speak a word of any language except English. Never studied another language. But he'll be blathering away. Then there's other people who think speaking in tongues is rubbish and they'll be praying quietly. There's more there who will be singing. Someone will share his experience of God and talk about things that happened in his life. There'll be a guy who was fourth in command of the Irish army. There'll be a few more who have never had a job in their lives. There'll be someone who was mired in depressive illness for years. The doctors had her on medication. She was going to kill herself. And she walked free of it through the power of the holy spirit. Oh you'll see lots of different things. All of em true things by the way. Things which empower you. None of em designed to steal your life while creating the illusion you've actually had a valid human experience. Which is what Tarentino's turgid fervourless violations are designed to do. Those useless repetitively conformist celebrations of violence and torture represented in dozens of unoriginal wearisome graphically new ways. Bright and tacky, but still the same old trash. Psychotic killers violating and torturing people. And Tarentino thinks it's fun. He is a clown playing with forces he does not understand. He perceives the nature of truth as little as a spoon perceives the taste of food.But I'll go to The Inglorious Basterds. And I'll stay to the end. And I won't breathe a word of complaint till the crap fest is over. Just as long as you come with me to the prayer group."
"How long is the prayer meeting?" said Crissie.
"Shorter than a Tarrantino film," sez I.
"How long?"
"An hour and a half tops."
"No way," said Crissie again.
This time I knew she meant it.

Friday, September 18, 2009

expostulation and reply

Coffee with the Mammy in the Cafe Des Beaux Parvenus at Newbridge Silverware.
The midafternoon cacophony affirms life all around us.
The mother of all the Healys is leafing through a newspaper.
Her favourite son for his part is busy leering at the passing talent.
"Did you see the list of people caught for tax evasion?" wondereth the Mammy.
"I don't read the papers," sez I snootily.
The matriarch favours me with a glance of cool asperity.
"You should," sez she.
"Why, what happened?" mouths I disinterestedly.
"A woman who owned a lap dancing club was forced to pay back taxes of a million Euro," said the Mammy.
"I'd say she's a proper little Madam," quoth I sparklingly.
We quaffed our coffees.
"There's another scandal in motor racing," said Lil presently.
"What's it about?" asks me.
"A rich Italian called Flavio Briatore is accused of ordering one of his racing drivers to crash on purpose to let another guy win," explained the aged parent expertly.
"How rich is he?" sez me.
"He owns a British soccer team," sez she.
"They'll let him off so," sez me cynically.
"There's to be a hearing with the head of Formula One racing next week," sez the Mammy.
I looked up sharply.
"The head of Formula One?" sez me.
"Yes," quoth she.
"Max Mosely?" expostulateth me.
"The very one," replieth the mother.
I shook my head.
"That's going to be some hearing," I murmured. "You gotta savour the irony Mother. Poor ould Flavio will be appearing before a guy who was recently caught in an orgy with prostitutes dressed as Nazis, re-enacting Nazi rituals and generally pushing out the boundaries of perversion according to the Nazi hand book. How will Flavio keep a straight face when Von Moselystein asks him for an explanation? And how on earth could Mosely find anyone guilty of anything anyway after what he himself has done? Good grief. It'll be high farce. Or at least High Command farce. Arf arf."
This passionate discourse on moguls inhumanity to moguls was not as entertaining for my listener as you might expect.
The Mammy shrugged and changed the subject.
"What were you praying about last night?" she enquired keenly.
"How do you know I was praying?" sez me.
"I heard you," averreth she.
"Ah Ma," sez me.
The aged P spread her arms wide in affrighted innocence.
"It wasn't my fault," she said. "Your voice carries. It sounded like you were really hamming it up."
"I was praying the rosary," I told her.
"Ah," sez she.
"Sorry if it disturbed you," sez me.
"No, no, it didn't disturb us, it was funny," quoth she.
"Didn't disturb us?" sez me.
"I was in the kitchen with Nessa Dunlea," quoth she.
"And you were both listening to me praying?" sez I aghast.
"We weren't listening but you were audible," chuckleth she.
The noble Heelers looked momentarily nol prossed.
"Anyway," sez the Mammy, "what were you praying about?"
"Guess!"
"World peace?"
"Pshaw Mama."
"Personal healing?"
"Ah who needs that!"
"What then?"
"I think you know."
"The Russki?"
"There you go, that's exactly what I was praying about."
"You can't pray for those sort of things."
"Hey, what's the point of being on speaking terms with the creator of the universe if I don't ask him for what I really want?"
"But he doesn't answer those sort of prayers."
"What do you mean Mother?"
"We used to pray for things like that all the time, let him ask me out, oh please please God, let him be the one, and God never answered. There's no point in praying that way."
"Think about this Mother. If he had answered those prayers the way you wanted them answered all those years ago, you wouldn't be sitting here with me today. I would never have been your son. So really after all these years he's finally letting you know with this conversation that your prayers were answered in a way better than you ever could have hoped. By not going out with those guys you asked God to get for you, you ended up having me as a son. So you won all round. I think you should fall on your knees and thank God right this moment."
The Mammy's eyes narrowed.
"The point is," she persisted, "he doesn't answer those prayers."
Ireland's greatest living poet half turned from her, looked up at the ceiling and addressed the Deity briefly.
"You hear that God?" sez me. "Sounds like a sort of a challenge."
A couple of vaguely alluring waitresses drifted by and my attention returned to earthly matters.
"Aroogah," I murmured appreciatively, and then in a breathless whisper "whoargh."
"Son," said the Mammy, "I really wish you wouldn't do that."
A thought struck her.
"You wrote about me on your blog again," she pronounced severely.
"I confess I did."
"And you changed what I said the night you looked in to the bedroom to check on me. I only said I was dead but you added another comment. I never told you to go away. You just ran out of the room because you got a fright when I said I was dead."
"I needed to jazz it up."
"You jazzed it down."
"I think the readers will appreciate what I wrote."
"It was funnier the way it really happened."
"I don't think it was."
"Son you're not doing justice to my best work."
"That's showbiz Ma."
We finished our coffees and exited stage left to the carpark.
Outside the cafe the soft grey tones of September had given way to a sudden burst of sunlight.
The air had the unmistakeable tang of Autumn.
It was one of those moments.
I stilled my spirit in the evening tide and looked around.
It was everywhere.
The grace and power and light of royal truth.
In every single person and every single thing on earth.
God made the world.
And God made no mistakes.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

what hath God wrought


heelers theory of probability

Is this what it boils down?
Were all Einstein's wrestlings with the nature of existence, his convoluted equations, his obtuse rationcinations, were they all merely an attempt to impress some Russian babe he met in the Costa Cafe on Dawson Street?
Probably.

three strings hath my hamster

Night time at the Chateau de Healy.
The noble Heelers removes his jumper and shirt, preparatory to heading bedwards.
He stands for a moment, an undeniably magnificent specimen of humanity.
A small piece of detritus falls from his belly button.
He picks it up.
Close examination reveals that it is a half chewed fragment of something white.
Possibly at one time a member of the apple family.
Heelers screams: "Hammmmmy!"
From her cage MC Hamster begins to sing.
She sings:

"I could be a sheepdog
If I had a taily
I could chase cats around the garden all day
No I don't think I'd like that
And I could leave pieces of apple in your belly button and bits of carrot in your armpits
Now that would be crazy
And you could tell your friends in England you'd like that
And I know how Robert Browning must have felt
Because I'm feeling the same way about you
Wondering what you're doing
Is everything okay
Do you still disapprove of Southpark to occupy your mind
Am I being too unkind
Will the chief still bust your ass
If you don't take down the meths lab on Malavista
Oh and by the way
How's your broken heart today
Is that mended too
Mines not
I love you
I really do."

It's impossible to stay angry with the hamster for long when she sings like that.

let us speak of brigadiers

Me and my feminist cousin Pauline barely tolerating each other in the Cafe Costa on Dawson Street.
Evening traffic sighing in the street.
Last sunlight playing on the pavement.
"Why do you think Amnesty International didn't send the Brigadier?" wondered Pauline.
We had been talking about an Amnesty International investigation into Israeli actions during one of the recent wars in the Middle East.
Amnesty had asked an army officer of our acquaintance called Colonel Trunners to go to Lebanon and look for evidence of Israeli war crimes.
Pauline was wondering why they hadn't picked a more senior army officer, again an acquaintance of ours, known to scholars of my work as Brigadier Berrigan.
I weighed her question.
Pauline wouldn't sit still if I tried to slip in my usual gentle pro Israeli propaganda.
Best to stick to the subject.
"Amnesty International regard Colonel Trunners as a safe pair of hands," I told her. "They knew he'd give them the result they wanted. They knew they could send him to Lebanon and that sure as eggs are eggs he'd accuse Israel of war crimes. Brigadier Berrigan is not regarded by Amnesty International as such a safe pair of hands. He's got too much integrity for them to risk asking him. Of course the goodish Brigadier would never endorse my analysis of the permanant Arab war against Israel. And I'd never endorse his. But Amnesty International simply couldn't depend on him to uphold their own crassly partisan view of the conflict. They just couldn't trust him. The Brigadier would be walking around Lebanon and he'd be liable to say exactly what he thought without fear or favour. He'd be liable to ask where the peasants of South Lebanon got their hands on high calibre military hardware with Iranian markings on it. From Amnesty's point of view the Brigadier himself would be a loose cannon. Great Scott. The Brigadier would be liable to accuse the Arabs of war crimes. We couldn't have that, now could we. Amnesty International couldn't risk getting the wrong result. Best to stick with Trunners. He's a sneaky little Irish Times reading anti Israeli shit. He'd be only too happy to accuse the Israelis of war crimes until the cows come home regardless of the facts. Brigadier Berrigan on the other hand might just aspire to telling the truth. The truth as he saw it, mind. Whatever that truth was. Amnesty International couldn't take that chance. The Brigadier might start talking about the acts of war carried out by Hezbollah from Lebanon. He might dwell on the deaths of Israeli soldiers in the cowardly Hezbollah sneak attacks. He might discuss the Hezbollah practice of torturing and murdering Israeli captives prior to prisoner exchanges so that the Israelis only ever receive dead bodies. He might mention the Ayatollah's dicatorship in Iran whose proxy army Hezbollah is. And he might even end up accusing the Islamists themselves of engaging in unprovoked aggression, terrorism, and heavens to Murgatroyd honest to God old fashioned war crimes. No. Amnesty International could never take a chance on that happening. They were always going to send the Colonel rather than our old friend the Brigadier."

the monica leech laugh in

there once was a monica leech
whose strength far exceeded her reach
she said: there's nought sinister
bout my affairs with the minister
thanks to independent newspapers life is a beach

today they said

Tim Marshall, Sky News: "The man who threw his shoes at President Bush is a hero across the Arab world."

James Healy: "This cowardly Islamist shoe thrower is not a hero across the Arab world. He is not even a hero across the Muslim world. He is in fact almost universally despised by the millions of Arabs and Muslims who wish to live as partners with other nations and at the same time to live free. He is not a hero to the vast majority of Iraqis who regard the Americans as the only hope for their country. He is not a hero to the Kurds who recognise that the Americans are the only ones to ever offer them dignity, protection and justice. He is not a hero to the Iranian people whose governing Ayatollahs recently slaughtered them in the streets in order to steal back an election from them. He is not a hero to anyone worth mentioning at all. Because many many Arabs and Muslims now know precisely what he is. He is a hireling of the bigoted Iranian Ayatollah dictatorship's Al Qaeda alliance who was paid to throw his shoes at President Bush but who had previously sat through twenty years of Saddam Hussein's murderocracy without ever once throwing a shoe in anger or indeed committing any other deed we might mistake for an act of courage or defiance on a dark night. Only Sky News could call this vile creeping toe rag a hero. Only Sky News could propagate such a blatent lie about such a craven coward. It is interesting to note that Sky News is owned by Rupert Murdoch the proprietor of the supposedly pro American Fox News. Whichever way the War On Terror pans out, apparently Rupert expects to have backed the winning side. The wheel is rigged but it's the only game in town, eh Rupert? Yeah. Sky News is now dancing to the tune of its sponsor Qatar Airways, the airline of the country which gave the world the Nazi channel Al Jazeera. How much are they paying you Rupert? I mean, what's the going rate for treachery these days? Hoo boy. Sky is really moving in illustrious circles. Sky U Akbar. Long live Sky News. Victory to the shoe throwers of Skybollah. Bring on the dark Islamic night.

in the lair of the beast

John Fry looked up from a printout as a minion entered his office.
"What does it mean?" he asked.
The minion trembled.
"Our Research And Development boys have been conducting extensive tests," said the minion. "But unfortunately we still have no idea what a clype is."
Fry's naturally baleful look deepened a notch from profoundly baleful to extremely baleful.
A wave of drunken courage swept the minion.
What did he have to lose?
Lately he, and a lot of other minions at the Johnston Press, had become less inclined to look up to the great baleful men who led them.
"The one thing we know sir," ventured the minion, "is that it's nothing good."
Fry's roar sent him scurrying back into the hall.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

in the wee small hours of the morning

The Chateau de Healy is in darkness.
The young squire is about to go to bed.
He launches his final patrol of the night.
Outside the night is deep and dark and mothy and warm.
His footsteps fill the ancient hall.
He checks that all the doors and windows are locked.
He pauses to ensure the appliances are switched off.
He goes to the Mammy's room to see that she's okay.
Opening her door he listens intently.
There is no sound.
He listens yet more intently.
Nothing.
Not even a breath.
The noble Heelers feels a creeping panic.
He enters the darkened room and stands at the bedside.
Still nothing.
He leans over the bed.
A voice rings out.
"I'm dead," crows the Mammy. "Would you for God's sake leave me alone!"

a miktam of james

and the numbers we give years
are flung like chaff from the plough
and i am allowed to see
hence and thence and now
people past or passing or to be
come streaming from the fields
i believe

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

septembering at the chateau


The Admiral drops by.

sonia et lumiere

i saw worlds in her eyes
how common and absurd this is
an ordinary surprise
shaking through centuries
down narrow city streets
drifting over marshes
soft like a thief
or wind through the rushes
new for every heart that it touches

from battlefields afar

Last week British special forces launched a raid in Afghanistan to rescue New York Times journalist Stephen Farrell.
The British fought with typical heroism.
They are still lions.
Albeit lions led by Millipedes.
They went in, wiped the floor with Al Qaeda and the Taliban, and rescued the idiot Farrell.
Farrell is a Paddy Whack.
I am ashamed to say he is Irish.
He has spent the War On Terror attempting to undermine the Allies.
I mean the good guys.
I mean the Americans and the British without whom the rest of the world will sink into dark Islamic night.
Interestingly enough, Farrell had previously been taken hostage by Islamic fascists in no less a country than Iraq.
That was back in 2004.
For some reason Al Qaeda released him that first time.
I wonder why.
Maybe they thought he was on their side.
An understandable mistake because the New York Times is on their side.
Anyhoo.
In Afghanistan last week the Brits taught Al Qaeda and the Taliban a few more lessons.
In the midst of the fire fight a British soldier was killed.
I salute this hero.
While the bullets were flying, the half witted Farrell, and his Afghan translater attempted to make a run for it from the Al Qaeda Taliban safe house where they'd been imprisoned.
The translator was cut down probably by the fleeing Muslims.
I would not wish such a death on anyone.
But I will not salute him.
He and Farrell had been warned by the Allies not to go into the area where they were kidnapped.
They had gone there anyway, seeking to discredit the Allies for an airstrike on the Al Qaeda Taliban army in that same location a few days earlier.
They had gone there hoping to sing the usual Quisling song about innocent civilians among the Al Qaeda Taliban dead.
That song is getting kind of old.
No, I won't be saluting Farrell's dead translator.
Or Farrell.
The useless bastard and his useless traitor newspaper are claiming at the moment that no rescue attempt should have been made because negotiations with the Muslim Nazis had been underway.
It's the price of them.
But the Brits went in anyway.
And they did the job.
In spite of having their hands tied behind their back with ridiculous rules of engagement which ensure that in every encounter with the enemy they'll lose a hero or two.
I don't like these rules of engagement.
I don't like our heroes being forced to take bullets from Islamist scum.
I think Prime Minister Gordon Brown should put a stop to these rules of engagement.
He should tell Afghanistan's newly re-elected President Karzai in no certain terms to start acting a bit more grateful when our heroes kick Islamist ass.
And he should tell Stephen Farrell and the all but defunct New York Times to go **** themselves.

the monica leech laugh in

there was once was an Irish Minister For No Jobs
who specialised in governmental snow jobs
he hired a young sexy
as PR execsy
And whatever you do don't mention blow jobs

moon zero two

Richard Branson was in his plush London office.
The phone rang.
He answered it.
"Hello."
"Hello Mr Branson, I'm calling to offer you some friendly advice."
"Who is this?"
"I'm calling from the Johnston Press."
"Who?"
"We are a newspaper group Sir. Large one. We own 300 newspapers in Britain and Ireland."
"Never heard of you," said Richard Branson.
"Oh," said the voice.
"What do you want?" said Richard Branson.
"I want to warn you," said the voice. "Someone called James Healy has written on the internet that you laid the foundations for your fortune by providing a network of abortion services to young people, students and others around Britain in the late 1960's. He claims you made your fortune by getting in on the ground floor of the abortion industry soon after abortion was legalised in Britain. He suggests you are nothing more than a glorified procurer of abortions. He derides the biographies about you which have never so much as mentioned abortion. He openly wonders how many Shakespeares you aborted and then he brazenly suggests that they were all Shakespeares. He goes on to assert that you have a death wish because of your guilt about the lives you've taken through abortion. He says this death wish explains all your adventures with hot air balloons and bunjee jumping and such. Mr Branson you really should consider suing him."
Richard Branson was silent for a moment.
He took a deep breath.
"You febrile Johnston Press c***s," he roared suddenly. "F*** off and do your own dirty work. And if you call this number again, I'll have you shot."
He slammed down the receiver.
Richard Branson is normally a softly spoken fellow but when roused can summon up a vehemence which is apt to startle the unwary.

Monday, September 14, 2009

alyona camera shy


She is more beautiful than your dreams.

name day

people like years in the city streets
throng in the rain it falls like centuries
the fall of man is never so complete
the fall of night never such a certainty
clocks are striking somewhere down the quays

as i am struck my 30th hour done
takes wing like a soul circles and is gone
alone amid the crowd i hear the rain
drum the outright tragedy of man
birth is death divided by a span

the monica leech laugh in

Old man Ganucci looked out the window over his garden.
The lawns and flower beds were running wild.
This year the aches and pains in his back had prevented him from tending his pride and joy.
Wearily he sat himself down at the kitchen table and began to write a letter to his son Vinnie.
Vinnie was in jail for whatever it is Italians go to jail for in New Jersey.
Mr Ganucci wrote.
"Caro bambino Vincenzo.
It is a source of great sadness to me that we are not together at this moment. Particularly since the garden which I love more than life itself, is becoming overgrown with weeds and I, an old man, am too weak to dig it. If only you were here. But alas.
Your loving Papa."
Mr Ganucci posted the letter that afternoon.
A few days later a reply came, postmarked with the distinctive logo of Attica penitentiary prison.
Mr Ganucci opened it.
The letter read.
"Papa.
Whatever the hell you do, don't dig up the garden. That's where I've hidden the bodies.
Baci e abracci.
Vincenzo."
Mr Ganucci sighed.
He had barely finished sighing when the sound of sirens and overhead helicopters filled the room.
He glanced out the window.
It was as if the entire New Jersey police department had descended on his garden, along with black suited FBI agents, and a substantial military detachment from Homeland Security.
Cops, agents and soldiers descended on the flower beds.
In moments the entire garden had been dug up.
An apologetic man in black presented himself at the door.
"We're sorry about this Mr Ganucci," said the man in black. "We will of course reimburse you fully for any damage to your garden. Our mistake."
As quickly as they'd arrived the security forces vanished.
Mr Ganucci began to make his tea.
He was whistling to himself.
The phone rang.
It was a long distance call from Attica prison.
"Pop," roared Vinnie down the line. "This was the best I could I do. I'm sorry I couldn't be there myself."

***************
Joke lifted from Jean M Balconi's quirky little website http://jmbalconi.stblogs.com/ which often contains reflections of particular interest to Catholics. Clearly the church is attracting an interesting clientele these days.

randoms

Lattes with Fortescue Smythe in the Cafe Des Beaux Parvenus at Newbridge Silverware.
I am waxing poetical about the works of CS Lewis.
"He never came all the way to Rome," I muse. "But his Christianity reads like it's down the line. I mean to a Catholic, it reads like it's the real deal. I was looking at something he's written about his schooldays. And he was talking about getting pushed around. And I liked him but I was sure this was going to end up as some corny evocation of turning the other cheek. But no. CS Lewis tells it like it is. And he doesn't pretend it was okay. Some of the children were prostituting other children. There were all the usual violations and intimidations and destructions of childhoods. And CS Lewis never acts like it was all somehow meant to be. He concludes with a sort of graveyard comment about the bullies: They enjoyed their salad days. Paechendaele did for most of them. I thought this was nearly the best thing I ever read. It was just the business. He'd really been there. He'd really seen it happen. I mean I know Jesus left us teachings about turning the other cheek. And I know if I want to follow the Lord I cannot dismiss his teaching. But I know his teaching was never meant as a justification for tyrants either. That's the thing. And CS Lewis knew it too. I gotta tell you Smitty. If I heard Conor Bowman had lost his arms and legs, I wouldn't exactly go into mourning."
Fortescue Smythe sat up.
"Actually," he drawled, "Bowman might lose his arms and legs. He's got an illness that might do that to him."
I stared.
It was a minute before the power of speech returned.
"So another of the grand high heteros of Newbridge College is falling apart at the seams," I mused. "First Trevor Rodriguez gets a nervous breakdown. Now Conor Bowman gets whatever he's got. Perhaps if they'd just managed to project more of their sexual fears about themselves onto other little boys, they might not have turned out to be such worthless uninspired decrepit heaps of rotting crap. It's terribly sad."
Fortescue Smythe yawned and left.
He's heard it all before.
When he'd gone I addressed the Deity briefly.
"Am I so destroyed?" I asked. "Am I really so monstrous as to wish their absolute destruction? Have I lost you so completely? Surely you won't leave me like this."

default setting

Tony O'Reilly's Independent Newspapers group has defaulted on a 200 million loan from its creditors.
The myth has collapsed.
All the nonsense talk about Independent Newspapers being read in every home in Ireland.
No one is buying or reading these crudd sheets.
No one ever has.
Not since about 1980.
All the claims about the popularity of the Independent Newspapers lifestyle journos, all the claims that their exaltation of hedonism was in fact something the public wanted, all the claims that the pornographying editorial board were some kind of geniuses, all are brought to nought.
Well not exactly nought.
Around 200 mill actually.
It's over.
Independent Newspapers can now be seen for what it truly is.
This is what Independent Newspapers is.
Independent Newspapers is the group that published Ian O'Doherty's malign dishonourable and cowardly lies claiming the Catholic church is a paedophile ring.
Independent Newspapers is the group that published John Cooney's malignly cretinous call for a boycott of Catholic church sacraments.
Independent Newspapers is the group that in partnership with British porn baron Richard Desmond, employs Ger Colleran the editor of the Daily Star who falsely, malignly and maliciously claimed on national television that children had been screaming for help in every Catholic church presbytery in Ireland.
These people are Independent Newspapers.
And their total net indebtedness is nearly two billion quid.
That's right.
Not just the 200 mill they've just defaulted on.
Nearly two billion.
They're finished.
Unless our craven kleptocratic Fianna Fail government decides to bail them out.
But ah.
That's another story.

*******
This week's episode of the Heelers Diaries was brought to you by the words malign, craven, cowards, liars and kleptocrats, and by the number two billion, and by the colours green, white and gold. The Heelers Diaries is a production of the Children's Television Workshop.

rock me corner shop

Sitting with Serafina watching an incomprehensible concert on the box featuring a group called Corner Shop.
The group appear to be people of a vaguely Hindu persuasion.
The Hindus are the most beautiful people on God's earth.
(Except for the Russians.)
(And the Arabs.)
(And certainly the Italians.)
(Oh and maybe the Chinese on a good day.)
But these Hindus appear to be strung out on drugs or something.
They're not looking their best.
Maybe they've just had too many late nights.
"I don't see the point of this," I murmur disconsolately.
"Just watch and be patient," says Serafina.
Then Corner Shop start to sing their famous hit.
And now I see the point.
They sing:

"We're dancing
Under the lights
Of the Financial Controller
Of a major bank.
He is the one who can give us all the money we want
To take over newspapers we know nothing about.
Brimful of parvenus on the 45
Brimful of parvenus on the 45
Yes it's brimful of parvenus on the 45
Everyone needs a billion dollar bank loan for a pillow.
Everyone needs a billion.
Everyone needs a billion dollar bank loan for a pillow.
Everyone needs a billion.
We're on the RPM. (Real P****less Munts.)
But it's perfectly acceptable
To call us d***less c**ts.
We're dancing
Through our periodic purges
Of some poor newspaper
We took over to satisfy our onanistic urges
John Fry.
He is the man.
Who can bring us alive.
From the end of the dawn
And into the night
Our new CEO
I wonder how long he'll last
Before he has to go
Better make this one fast
We are the ones to put the workforces down
We are the ones who are incomparable clowns
We exist only through
Bankers subventions
We are the wankers
Who don't wanna pay pensions
You admire us
Why don't you confess
What's not to admire
About the Johnston Press
Brimful of parvenus on the 45

Brimful of parvenus on the 45
Brimful of parvenus on the 45
Everyone needs a bank loan for a pillow
Everyone needs a bank loan.
Everyone needs a bank loan for a pillow
Everyone needs a bank loan
We are worthless scum.
You know the ones.
Our masturbatory abilities
Bastorial clowns
can't save our share price
it keeps going down
Ooops
We've gone bust again
Maybe it's because
Of the teenagers we've hired
Or maybe it's because
The wrong people are getting fired
Brimful of parvenus on the 45
Brimful of parvenus on the 45
Brimful of parvenus on the 45
We're gonna tap your phone..."

Sunday, September 13, 2009

bushy


today they said

President Barack Obama: "In pursuit of Al Qaeda and its allies we will never falter."

James Healy: " When you announced the closure of Guantanamo Bay prison, you faltered. When you accorded legal rights and privileges to Muslim Nazis, you faltered. When you attempted to discredit the destruction of Saddam Hussein's murder regime, you faltered. When you took your foot off the pedal in Iraq claiming that that country wasn't central to the War On Terror, you allowed Al Qaeda and Iran to regroup and redirect their resources into Afghanistan, and you faltered. When you attempted to criminalise the CIA as a means towards criminalising the Administration of President Bush, you gave hope to the Jihadis that America could be divided and conquered on the home front, and perhaps there you faltered most grievously of all. You've already faltered you great twit. You are a congenital falterer. You haven't stopped faltering since you took office."

heelers defies the swastika

It was the eve of the Johnston Press takeover of the Leinster Leader newspaper.
The mighty Heelers was breaking bread in a cafe with two other journalists.
One of the journalists was Paul O'Meara, familiar to students of my writings as the tame trade unionist.
I had never put much store in O'Meara's trade unionism. (Nor in his journalism for that matter.)
I thought he was working for the man.
But he was one of the few people who would be key to any fight back I might organise if the journalistic staff ever woke up to the threat to our lives and careers represented by the advent of the Johnston Press.
The other man sharing a coffee with us was Henry Bauress, a genial socialist idiot who strangely and uniquely managed to represent for me all that's good and all that's pisspoor in Irish journalism.
Decent and well motivated, yet utterly without insight, intellect or ability.
He was a gentleman in his way.
And not a bad fellow.
But the ultimate conformist too.
A conformist who thought he was a radical.
These were the only two I held in any regard at all at the Leinster Leader.
It's not saying much is it.
So on this fateful evening I was offering them the benefit of my advice.
The coffees were on the table.
I cut to the chase immediately.
"We should demand significant financial compensation for allowing the takeover to proceed," I told them. "We shouldn't ask. We should demand. A million quid each. That way it won't matter if the Brits try to fire us to make back the cost of their investment. We should make it clear that we'll close the newspaper if we're not properly compensated. We should make it clear before the takeover goes through."
Around us the Caspo cafe in Naas clattered with the hollow cacophonies of death.
"Under the law we have no right to demand any compensation," pronounced O'Meara clinically. "Other newspapers have been taken over. In some cases the journalists received nothing. In some cases they got figures around the five thousand mark. In one case they got twenty thousand each. But the fact is under the law we have no right to demand anything."
I looked at him coldly.
The way he'd spoken was almost as if he was reading from a crib sheet.
I wondered who'd written the script.
"I don't agree with your assessment of our rights under the law," I said. "In these circumstances the law is what we say it is. Any man has the right to protect his livelihood. The Irish people will always recognise that. There will be support for us above and beyond anything that is officially mandated in the statute books. Listen to me. You may be sure Ian Stewart will receive millions of pounds for his shares in the newspaper we've written for ten, twenty and thirty years. A pissant little Scots accoutant. That's all he was. And the little old ladies who own the Leinster Leader made him Managing Director. And then he gave himself and his friends shares in the company. And then they used the company to borrow money from idiot gangster banks to take over other newspapers in order to make this newspaper more enticing as a take over target for idiot gangster Brits who themselves have never done a day's work in their lives and whose takeovers are financed with borrowings from other idiot gangster banks. Remember. Stewart and his friends didn't borrow the money themselves. They borrowed the money using our company and our jobs as security. They gambled with our futures and with the newspaper at no risk to themselves. And now they're selling it. They're selling our newspaper. And they'll all get ten million each. You've got to think of it that way. No workforce on the planet earth has to surrender its right to protest in such circumstances. I'm telling you Stewart will get ten million quid for his shares in the newspaper we've built up over the last ten years. I'm not debating with you. I'm telling you. I'm saying we don't ask anyone's permission to express our reservations about the sale of the company we work for, to a British company who don't know us from Adam and who will end up firing all of us to try and claw back the money they're going to throw away on Stewart and his friends' shares. I say we fight this from day one. And we fight to win. There is no takeover without a million dollars each for the ten journalists. Stewart and the little old ladies can make up our cut from their own ill gotten gains if they want to. But either way we should make it clear, that the Leinster Leader will cease to exist if we are not properly consulted and compensated on this issue. Everyone involved should understand the journalists at the Leinster Leader are not going to gamble on the humanitarianism of a bunch of British scruff who clearly have more money they've borrowed from idiot banks than than they have sense. We should plan for war. We've got to get mean. Even the nice guys among us. We've got be prepared to strike and strike hard. Industrial espionage. Picket lines. Staged confrontations in the workplace. Asking our friends and family in the business community to withdraw their advertising. If Stewart tries to intimidate one of us, he should be instantly facing ten of us shouting in his face: Go home to Scotland you lowlife bastard. Whatever it takes. We've got to get as bad as they are. Otherwise we'll die poor."
O'Meara leaned forward.
His bald pate gleamed sweatily in the gloom.
"The law is not on our side James," he insisted firmly.
Henry Bauress yawned.
He had been silent all through my wake up call peroration.
Clearly it hadn't moved him.
With great deliberation he turned towards me and fixed me with a mocking stare.
His words when they came were laced with heavy sarcasm.
"This is all very well," pronounced Henry Bauress drily. "We could sit around here all evening talking about how many angels might fit on the head of a pin. It's not getting us anywhere."
The comment was a sneer at the Catholic church.
And at me.
Henry apparently considered me a Catholic for some reason.
I looked at him curiously.
His comment was so ill judged, so much an act of ingratitude for the favour I had been doing both these twits by sharing my sublime insights about the nature of the reality we were facing, his comment was such a boorish clownish cretinism, that for a moment I was quite incapable of further locution.
I wasn't shocked.
Or even offended.
Just sort of curious.
I felt no need to rebut what he'd just said.
The sneer is a very old one.
Atheists have been sneering it for hundreds of years.
Marxists absolutely love it.
It's based on an apocryphal assertion that Catholic prelates sat out some famine or plague or war debating how many angels could fit on the head of a pin.
Historians nowadays admit there's no real evidence such a debate ever took place among the leaders of the church.
The sneer is a lie.
I looked at Henry.
His assessment of what was going on here, his conclusion even in this eleventh hour, that James Healy needed to be cut down to size, that an upstart religionist was once more getting above himself, this conclusion was so far removed from the nature of the reality we faced, ie that a British sword of Damocles was about to throw a great many decent and a few not so decent people out of work, and that we were about to let it happen, Henry's conclusion and response to all my efforts to avert this disaster had been so crass so porcinely invidious, that now at last I understood the nature of futility, now at last I realised nothing would stem the avalanche, now at last I could no longer be bothered trying to motivate either of these cravens, Bauress or O'Meara, or anyone else, to defy the inevitable cataclysm which was engulfing our shared horizon.
They were ignorant.
And they were wilfully ingnorant.
There was nothing more I could do.
"Okay," I said.
The ghost of a smile touched my lips.
The little boy in me would have loved to debate Henry about the angels and the pin.
I stood up and walked to the door.
The die was cast.
No one at the Leinster Leader would now exercise their democratic right, nay their duty, to protect their jobs and their pension entitlements. I would not lead them.
Yeah.
I might have showed them the way.
But not now.
For whatever reason, they didn't want to know.
Bauress thought my selfless intellectual exertions on behalf of the soon to be oppressed workers had been mere vanity.
He distrusted me and the ancient religion more than he did the faceless mercantilists of the Johnston Press.
I had a feeling he'd repent at leisure.
And the question he'd suggested would be of most concern to the likes of a peasant like me: "How many angels would fit on the head of a pin?"
That was not the real question of the hour.
The real question was (and is): "How many pensions do any of you think the Johnston Press are going to pay to the journalistic staff at the Leinster Leader?"
I looked back into the half light of the cafe.
They were chatting quietly in the corner.
The realisation hit me.
I was isolated.
I had no allies.
The ghost of Walter Scott appeared beside me murmuring softly but insistently: "And ere the brig of turk was won, the headmost foeman rode alone."
Still I stared at the men I already considered former colleagues.
A wave of unworthy and unchristian contempt swept over me.
Mutt and Jeff.
Chicken Licken and Henny Penny.
Paul O'Mediocre and Henry Boneless.
I doubted the Johnston Press would have much use for either of them.
Not for long.
Their heads were almost touching above the coffee cups.
Hey Henry.
You thought I was a vile evil religionist ranting insanely about matters beyond me.
You were wrong.
At that moment I was the last law left in a world gone out of control.
And so I watched them.
The tame trade unionist and his affable radical acolyte galoot.
Earnestly waffling together in agreeable irrelevancy.
That was the last I ever saw of them.
They live now only in my memories.

the monica leech laugh in

Here's one for all you Spanish fans.
Question: Cuantos casas hay en Sprinfil?
Answer: Milhouse.
*****
The question means: "How many houses are there in Springfield?" It refers to the hometown of the Simpsons cartoon family.
The answer is a play on the Spanish for thousand "Mil," and the English for house, and on the name of Bart Simpson's best friend Milhouse. This is the first Spanish joke I've ever understood. For those of you gentle readers who have Spanish friends, let me give you a phrase that is going to prove vital in any discourse with a Spanish person... "Tus bromas me caen fatale." It means: "Your jokes kill me."

an open letter to sky news

Tell me.
Has Sky News traitorous defeatist and appeasement oriented coverage of the war against Muslim fascism been in any way affected by your sponsorship deal with Qatar Airways, the airline of the Arab Muslim country which broadcasts the Islamic Nazi channel Al Jazeera?
Best regards always.
James Healy