Dead Weight

The voting machines just won’t go away.

The useless machines are stored by local councils under contracts which commit them to pay millions for up to a quarter century.

So far, the electronic paperweights have cost €54 million, and the clock up another €200000 a year.

The thing is, according to EU law as enshrined in the Sale of Goods and Supply of Services Act, anything sold in Ireland must be of ‘merchantable quality’, ‘fit for the purpose’, and ‘as described’.

In short, the bloody things should work.

Bertie never believed in the merits of '<a href=
Bertie never believed in the merits of 'silly ould pencils'.

The Act only applies to consumers, but it beggars belief that the government can’t get rid of some very expensive crapware.

Surely there are a couple of hungry lawyers in Dublin who would be willing to sue the suppliers to oblivion for selling such a crock.

Even using them as door stops would ensure we got some value for money.

The voting machines fiasco is a symbol of everything that is wrong with government in Ireland.

The plan to move to evoting was badly thought out, expensive, and pursued with bull headed stubbornness even after experts warned of the risks.

Is it any wonder that Brian Cowen now as unpopular as Dubya?

By Gerard Cunningham

Gerard Cunningham occupies his time working as a journalist, writer, sub-editor, blogger and podcaster, yet still finds himself underemployed.