“Lies, damned lies, and statistics” is a phrase commonly used to describe the persuasive power of numbers and in particular the use of statistics to bolster the spin of powerless government representatives; in their efforts to support even weaker arguments regarding local employment policies.
The CEO’s Tipperary Live Register series gives a monthly breakdown of the number of people claiming Job-seekers Benefit, Job-seekers Allowance and other Registrants as registered with the Department of Social Protection. Figures like those shown hereunder, are published from each local social welfare office in Tipperary. This same Live Register, for some unknown reason, however is not designed to measure true unemployment figures. It includes part-time workers (those who work up to three days a week), seasonal and casual workers entitled to Job-seekers Benefit. It also does not appear to include Registrant figures for those leaving the Unemployment Register to seek work overseas or Registrants leaving only to re register again at another Social Welfare office as part of their efforts to find employment in our major cities.
North Tipperary Unemployment – Both Sexes – All Ages = 6,271
Nenagh – Both Sexes – All Ages = 2,542, Roscrea – Both Sexes – All Ages = 1,193, Thurles – Both Sexes – All ages = 2,536.
South Tipperary Unemployment – Both Sexes – All Ages = 7,864
Cahir – Both Sexes – All Ages = 1,135, Carrick-On-Suir – Both Sexes – All Ages = 1,699, Cashel – Both Sexes – All Ages = 1,031, Clonmel – Both Sexes – All Ages = 2,478, Tipperary Town – Both Sexes – All Ages = 1,521.
Total Current Unemployed Persons in Co. Tipperary up to and including December 2014 = 14,135
For those of our readers who have been somewhat dubious as to the accuracy of unemployment figures posted here on Thurles.Info and our criticism of local newspapers and websites, who continuously insist on publishing TD’s inaccurate spin, please Click Here and browse the combinations and permutations for yourself.
In the words of award winning columnist Gene Kerrigan (Sunday Independent) “I’m not sure why the media co-operates in this charade – Why do for free, work for which ‘consultants’ are paid enormous amounts?” Journalistic comment in all its forms certainly hit a new low in 2014. Of course the use of the internet and the need to be “first with the news” to generate traffic, has led to a “copy / paste, check and update later” mentality within almost all media sectors.
Look at the recent ‘Press Releases’ posted out by elected North Tipperary TD’s, and published by local media and websites;
(1)“Fine Gael Tipperary TD, Noel Coonan, has congratulated the eight organisations across Tipperary which have been approved for National Lottery funding by the Fine Gael Minister for Children and Youth Affairs James Reilly under the 2014 funding programme.” All hail James Reilly.
(2)“Local TD and Minister for the Environment Alan Kelly has welcomed the announcement by his colleague Kevin Humphreys of an allocation of €483,561 for five Tipperary projects.” All hail Kevin Humphreys.
National Lottery Funding of course comes from the everyday grocery store gambling habits of the tax payer. Proceeds are then collected and distributed at the whim of vote catching elected public representative, who in turn want you to believe this funding is their money, to approve and distribute in omnipotent fashion. Of course for some reason such doled out aid further attests to the belief that these same elected public representatives are the great “sustainers’ of your local universe.”
“We know you all, and will awhile uphold (Until Next Elections) the unyoked humour of your idleness.”
Apologies to William Shakespeare – (Henry IV [part 1])
The above five senior politicians, Mr M. McGrath, Mr N. Coonan, Mr T. Hayes, Mr J. Deenan & Mr A. Kelly took a long self promotional weekend away from Dail Éireann on Friday April 25th 2014, to appear at the Horse & Jockey in Co Tipperary for the launch of the “Derrynaflan Trail Tourism Project,” but currently remain powerless to control National Museum policy, which could remove up to 300 people from our ever increasing Thurles & Tipperary Unemployment Registers.
Figures released recently, via the Irish Tourist Industry Confederation, indicate that overseas tourists spent just over €3.5 billion in Ireland this year and 7.3 million overseas visitors to Ireland in 2014 represented the highest number in the sector in the past six years. The Confederation also claim that tourism businesses employed in excess of 200,000 people, with 5,000 employees having been added in the past year, and the prospect for a further 8,000 jobs to be generated in our current starting year.
With Tipperary’s recent growing unemployment figures published by the CSO this month and the closure of several well known hotels in this county, it is quite obvious that Tipperary tourism businesses failed to contribute to aiding our counties unemployment during 2014; consequently we have failed as a county to attract and have lost control of our tourism industry due to our failure to demand our fair share of tourism funding.
Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht Ms Heather Humphreys has recently announced the provision of an extra €2m in Arts funding, to be expended on Museums in Dublin and in Castlebar, Co Mayo, (latter only six minutes normal drive time via the N84 from Derrywash, Islandeady, the renowned birth place of Taoiseach Enda Kenny). The purpose of this funding has little to do with supporting Arts or Culture, instead it was granted to support yet again the Dublin Tourism Sector.
The museum board oversees the running of the country’s four major museums in Kildare Street, Merrion Street and Collins Barracks in Dublin, as well as the Museum of Country Life in Castlebar. This museum board had warned; nay threatened the government that it needed an extra €650,000 in funds in 2015 if it was to maintain their 2014 levels of expenditure, in other words an operating budget of €12.008 million for 2015. It had an overtime bill of €417,000, mostly due to the high cost of providing night-time security in Kildare Street and Sunday opening on all 4 sites. At a meeting earlier this year the board had discussed the possibility of closing the museum sites on Sundays, which would have resulted in a saving of €200,000 in basic overtime pay. Note admission is free to all 4 museums.
So Ms Heather Humphreys in her funding and in truth gave two million Euros of National Arts and Culture funding to boost the Dublin tourism sector. This funding of course should have been expended from the coffers of the current Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport, Mr Paschal Donohoe, TD.
In France and Germany presently, at an estimated cost of €2 million to the Irish taxpayer, new tourism advertising has begun circulating, but only promoting Dublin as the ‘must visit’ city break destination in 2015. Same adverts supposedly have been appearing in cinemas during the month of December 2014, reaching up to four million French and 750,000 German cinema-goers for Dublin’s benefit. A four-page supplement about walking in Cork and Kerry will be circulated to 500,000 readers of Panorama, the magazine of Germany’s largest walking association.
Travel media visits including a crew from public TV broadcaster Saarländischer Rundfunk, will record a 30-minute programme on Dublin. City breaks in Dublin will be promoted on key travel and lifestyle websites. City breaks in Cork will be promoted with leading online travel agent Opodo and through e-marketing to 650,000 people. Great hotel offers are also being promoted through other top online travel agents, like VoyagePrivé.com (5 million subscribers) and ClubPrivéVacance.com (almost 700,000 subscribers), however the name County Tipperary will not receive a mention.
Over 2.3 million people living in and around Paris, we are informed, will seeing advertising in Direct Matin, A Nous Paris and Metro, in a campaign with Aer Lingus promoting flights from Paris to Cork and Dublin, again County Tipperary is notably absent with regard to any such marketing promotion.
Contempt for Tipperary by Politicians and National Museum Officials
Attempts to bring back the Derrynaflan Hoard to attract tourism to Thurles and Tipperary during May June and July 2015 (Latter to celebrate the 35th year of its discovery) has been met with silence by National Museum officials and all North Tipperary politicians including Minister Allen Kelly, latter who no longer answers his emails.
National Museum officials sight policy and security as being a stumbling block. It appears we can send army security personnel abroad to endangering their lives securing the Congo, Sierra Leone, Afghanistan, Bosnia, Syria, etc. etc. and place a security ISTAR Task Force (Intelligence, Surveillance, Target Acquisition, Reconnaissance) on ’Stand-By’ for a period of six months, as part of Nordic Battle Group 2015, latter a key component of the EU’s rapid response capability, but we can’t use our own defence forces to secure a couple of historical artefacts for a period of 3 months here in Thurles. Take into consideration also that up until recently we had 8 heavily armed soldiers and 2 policemen escorting cash-in-transit vans across this island for the sole benefit of banks, so why can we not use same to secure the Derrynaflan Hoard for 3 months in Thurles.
Perhaps it is time for our present 14,135 unemployed individuals to take to the streets to protest at this presents governments total failure to attract any worthwhile industry to Co Tipperary.
Time to summon Vincent Brown to Thurles – Oh no on second thoughts I forgot, Labour and Fine Gael TD are afraid to appear at his gigs.