A new week is upon us! This is my last full week in the US before I head back "home" to Dublin. I'm excited to see my spouse and my pet, though I will miss my Dad terribly. It's been fun having this time together. But alas and alack, I must return to "real life."
Real life entails worrying about how I can find a job or making some kind of income other than job seeker's assistance. I have been doing the old job search online (for jobs in Dublin) since arriving in Florida, but there's just nothing out there, which for someone like me is kind of amazing. I think the longest I've ever gone without working was one summer -- three months. And that was really only because I started back up teaching and school didn't begin until September! So this experience of being without work for seven months is...well, it's a lot of things: discouraging, stressful, challenging.
I'm still reading the Irish News though, to stay abreast of what's going on back there. And I have to say, it's pretty bleak. Here in the US we have words like "stimulus" and "plan" and "overhaul" in the headlines. New bills are being put forth, which gives the effect of action, new beginnings, you know, things happening. Reading the Irish news, you see "abuse victims," "tax," "protests," "crisis," and all manner of horrible things. And what is this "smart economy" anyways? I mean what is an "Innovation taskforce" supposed to be? Does that sound like a made up term or what? Is that really supposed to instill confidence in the Irish people? Yeah, everything's cool folks, Cowen's got his INNOVATION TASKFORCE working on it. Is Mr. T part of this team? I pity the fool who buys any of this BS.
And while I'm at it, I am sort of appalled at President McAleese's total blame of the abuse scandal on the abusers themselves. She says, “Those who switched off the light of love and hope in your lives, plunged our country into a terrible darkness.” Come on now. These victims could have gotten help for what happened to them decades ago if the State had cared. It's not like they didn't KNOW what was going on. Complacency of abuse is almost as much of a sin as the abuse itself, in my opinion. And it's only when backed into a complete corner does it seem like anyone will acknowledge this dark shadow on the country. But it isn't anything new. Seventy years. Seventy years! And what about the disadvantaged youth of Ireland today? Has it really come that far? According to a June 11, 2009 article in the Irish Times, "There are 6,000 children [in Ireland] at risk who do not have a social worker and 8,000 children have not even had a preliminary assessment." Know where they are ending up? Psych hospitals. Why doesn't Ireland make the fostering of its children a priority? According to this article, children are dying in State care and it isn't even being properly reported! As of June 12, "a total of 6,500 child protection cases [had] not been allocated a social worker." Do you realize how many kids that is? And in a country as small as this...it's truly heartbreaking. But it seems that heartbreak is the blood that pumps through Irish history.