Above: Another banger from the comic don Redmonk. Slayer of the gombeen.
Who is Conor Skehane? Could he be the overseer of an intelligent housing ecosystem where all and varied needs are humanely met, communities supported and at least shelter provided to all?
Why of course not, because this is the Ireland of 2018 and he is Conor Skehane. In 2013, Conor was appointed to lead the government’s Housing Agency for a multi-year term. In 2014, commenting on the high price of houses he declared “I will never buy a piece of property again. I rent.” The situation and objectives seemed pretty obvious so, good start! How and ever. Dublin rents are now 60% higher than five years ago. Next to no social, public or affordable housing has been built, the numbers of those who are homeless have exploded to almost 10,000 people. The words “clusterfuck” and “crisis” do no justice to the situation.
In late 2017 just before the scheduled end of his catastrophic term Skehan in a monumental effort of surrealist arse-covering summoned his great insight once more, soared free from the deadweight of reality, humanity and facts and pithily declared that homeless levels were in fact “normal”. A “normal” 176% increase in homelessness! Later he stigmatised one half of service-users and simultaneously pitted them against the other half by blaming the homeless for “gaming the system” to get social housing.
No small wonder they nationalised that brain and put it to work for the public good!
Illustration by Redmonk