Better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak and to remove all doubt

We all have it, but most of the time most of us try to curb it. I’m talking about the temptation to compare ourselves with others. In some cases – sport, for example – it makes sense, and there are teachers who think it’s a good idea to (publicly) rank the performance of pupils in her/his class. But most of the time it’s a childish desire to impress – remember Donald Trump telling us that his nuclear arsenal was bigger than that of ‘Little Rocketman’ Kim Jong-un?

And now Micheál Martin’s at it. On Saturday the Irish Times  reported him as saying Ireland (sic) has overtaken the UK when it comes to vaccine rollout. He said Ireland now had 72.4 per cent of adults fully vaccinated, while the UK had 72.1 per cent.” The vaccine rollout is continuing at great pace. Today we edged ahead of our nearest neighbours – a brilliant effort by everyone involved,” he said.

Is it any wonder that Fianna Fáil lie becalmed in the doldrums of public opinion? Tell you what, Micheál – this isn’t a game of monopoly, or even hurling. In fact it’s not a game at all, since it involves the good health of the citizens of the state or, for some, their death. So to talk about this as some sort of Olympic contest, where the ‘Ireland’ boat nudges marginally ahead of the UK boat, and we’re encouraged to do high-fives and yell at the moon – to talk and act like that shows you really don’t have a sense of decorum or even decency.

Is binn béal ina thost, Micheál – Silence is golden.

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