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Time to get rid of 24/7 gardai protection of past Taoisigh


RahenyFG

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Jun 17, 2010
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9,206
As you know past Taoisigh receive 24/7 gardai protection at their homes and when they move around the country. Ask yourself...is this really appropriate? I mean 24/7 protection on this scale for former US presidents is. Leader of the most powerful nation in the world, population of 300 million and bound to upset many people with vested interests but the leader of a small island nation with a population of 4 million? I don't think so. I can understand some protection for the first few years after they leave office but who right now would threaten a past taoiseach like Albert Reynolds, 80, or Liam Cosgrave, 92. I propose we either get rid of it completely or do what the US did. They ended lifetime protection for presidents after Clinton but gave 10 years state paid protection with the protection afterwards to be incurred by the former president. 5 years paid state protection would even be enough in this country. With the big pensions former taoisigh are getting, not to mention the fancy jobs some find themselves in, John Burton Chairman of IFSC Ireland, or Bertie Ahern doing his talks around the world at high prices, I think our former taoisigh can fund their own protection and not at the expense of the taxpayer.
 
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Analyzer

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Feb 14, 2011
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46,201
Get rid of it. It is nonsensical.

I do not want to be paying for a garda who might prevent somebody trying to punch B.Ahern.

If a mortgage holder in the commuter belt feels the need to thump a dithering taoiseach from Drumcondra, then there should be nothing interfering with his "right" to do so
:p
 

Analyzer

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46,201

Expose the lot of them

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20,944
As you know past Taoisign receive 24/7 gardai protection at their homes and when they move around the country. Ask yourself...is this really appropriate? I mean 24/7 protection on this scale for former US presidents is. Leader of the most powerful nation in the world, population of 300 million and bound to upset many people with vested interests but the leader of a small island nation with a population of 4 million? I don't think so. I can understand some protection for the first few years after they leave office but who right now would threaten a past taoiseach like Albert Reynolds, 80, or Liam Cosgrave, 92. I propose we either get rid of it completely or do what the US did. They ended lifetime protection for presidents after Clinton but gave 10 years state paid protection with the protection afterwards to be incurred by the former president. 5 years paid state protection would even be enough in this country. With the big pensions former taoisigh are getting, not to mention the fancy jobs some find themselves in, John Burton Chairman of IFSC Ireland, or Bertie Ahern doing his talks around the world at high prices, I think our former taoisigh can fund their own protection and not at the expense of the taxpayer.
I stand to be corrected here but I understand that Liam Cosgrave has waived the 24/7 protection. On the other hand Jack Lynch's house in Rathgar had 24/7 "protection" long after Jack vacated the house, I think the protection continued while the house remained in the ownership of the Lynchs. It was a nice little earner for the Gardai.

I completely agree that it is nonsense for a bankrupt state to pay for protection for ex-taoisigh, any who feel that theyare need of protection (Bertie?, Cowan?) can pay for it themselves out of their inflated and undeserved pensions.
 

mary_queen_of_the_gael

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Jul 14, 2012
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3,189
There is plenty of protection in Portlaoise for those needing protection. Until several former very high profile politicians are incarcerated under heavy security, this country is as dire as when the Quare Fella bumped into Napper Tandy in that Parisian bistro.
 

RahenyFG

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Jun 17, 2010
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9,206
I stand to be corrected here but I understand that Liam Cosgrave has waived the 24/7 protection.
Maybe it was waived since March but the article I posted was in March of this year and talks about Cosgrave's gardai protection.
 
D

Dylan2010

it makes no sense. either they have a random chance of being robbed like anyone so they should take their chances, or if some terrorist group want to make a point, would a couple of doughnut eating guards stop 5 or 6 armed men.
 

potholedogger

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Oct 17, 2012
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1,238
What protection can an unarmed Garda provide against an armed attacker?

Could an unarmed 7.5 stone female Garda protect a former Taoiseach?
 

RichardCameron

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Mar 27, 2012
Messages
367
I would imagine now is very much not the time to get rid of 24 hour Garda protection of Ahern and Cowen, although it might be cheaper to confine them in order to deliver it.
 
D

Dylan2010

I would imagine now is very much not the time to get rid of 24 hour Garda protection of Ahern and Cowen, although it might be cheaper to confine them in order to deliver it.
seems reasonable just describe it as a 6X6 "panic room" where they will be totally safe.
 

leroy42

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Jan 11, 2007
Messages
692
I have never understood the need for this protection lark. It is a never ending cycle. We put protection on a ex-taoiseach etc, and that just gives someone a target. So then we need more protection to protect them against a bigger threat. So then the threat gets bigger because apparently the 'prize' is so worthwhile. We we increase protection further.

If we just treated these people as normal, then what good would any person have from an attack. The US president is the most extreme example. By putting so much effort in protection (Air Force 1, the Beast) it is really saying that if anybody is ever successful at getting the president they have effectively got at the US as a whole. But democracy has a great thing that dictatorships haven't. Our leaders should not be seen as soon irreplaceable God, just the next person to fill the role.

We are a tiny backwater nobodyville on the western seaboard of Europe. If a Taoiseach is robbed etc, is that a blow to our country? If an Ex-Taoiseach believes he needs protection then maybe he was a bit of a sh1t and should have thought about that before. Garda have a direct dial number for all emergencies, let them use that like everyone else
 

potholedogger

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Oct 17, 2012
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The garda may fling the half eaten doughnut at the attacker. He/she may also use the cold coffee for the same purpose.
An unarmed Garda protecting a high profile target against an armed attacked is a waste of money. The attacker would simply shoot the Garda before stooting the Primary target if indeed te threat was real.

Whether the threat is real or not an unarmed Garda is a complete waste of money.

Why not give personal protection weapons to former politicians?
 

Expose the lot of them

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Maybe it was waived since March but the article I posted was in March of this year and talks about Cosgrave's gardai protection.
Then I am incorrect as I understood that he had not had this protection for years, it is a while since I passed his house and I cannot recall seeing a Garda presence. On the other hand, Jack Lynch's house had a "hut" at the garden gate where the Garda on duty "lived", passing the time during the summer playing with the cat and chatting to passersby and in the winter huddled over a heater but willing to engage in conversation with passersby.
 
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