Tuesday, 17th July 2018
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With the reopening of Stepaside Garda Station in Dublin there have been many accusations of the whole thing being a huge exercise in stroke politics. Of course it has been vehemently denied by everyone involved but it hasn't stopped the accusations from going away. It seems that anytime something out of the ordinary happens in Irish politics that stroke politics is somehow in play.

It isn't hard to see why the Irish electorate has become so cynical about the way in which politics is done here in this country. Every constituency has a number of national politicians who are working away on behalf of the people who elect them so they would be stupid to ignore their own backyard. They would ignore it at their peril and you only have to judge the election literature of any T.D. or senator to see how much they view getting things for their electorate as a primary element in their job.

It is often said that Irish politicians spend too much time on working for their electorate and not enough time working on a national or international level for their country but that would be to ignore just how small of a country we are and how many politicians that we have working for us. However their is an element of 'politics gone wrong' when it comes to the whole aspect of 'stroke politics', a sort of twisted, cynical view of getting something that you really shouldn't have gotten in the first place. Hence the view that, despite what so many people have said, there are so many others who have classed this as stroke politics, a location getting something using undue influence from a politician in a position of power.

The fact that the politician in question is an independent and important to the Government of the day makes it even more questionable. Every politician works for their own constituency but maybe some have greater influence that others and can get things that others can't. It seems a matter of good luck if you are in a constituency where you have such a politician and it need not just having an independent that the Government relies on but also having a Minister or Minister of State.

There are so many permutations by which a constituency can benefit from it's political masters other than by playing the stroke politics game. Anyway, if you were to strip back all of the ways by which a constituency got something it shouldn't really have got then there are plenty of counties that would be left bereft. It is commonly seen and accepted that if you have a politician who is important to the Government, by whatever means, then their constituency is going to get a bigger slice of the pie which might not be natural justice but is unfortunately understandable to all.


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