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Saturday, 14 July 2012

Its been a while since I posted, more down to laziness and not playing much poker than anything else but I intend to get back posting very soon as I've a good bit of poker planned. I also want to write a little about the lads in Vegas and some of the topics I covered a little in the Star poker supplement. 

My brother put up a post on Facebook today, I was going to write a post on the subject my self and didn't know he was writing one but after reading his one I thought I'd just stick it up here as he pretty much summed up my thoughts on the issue. The only thing I don't think he manages to get across in his post is how much hatred there is for that idiot Joe Brolly after he made a fool of him self telling the country how the people of Kildare were feeling on a Sunday morning heading to Croke Park.

Anyway for those of you who don't know my brother he transferred from his home club Milltown to the largest club in our Parish Allenwood a number of years ago to play senior football. My own family is what you would call a Gaa family (I myself share something in common with the Gaa field in Milltown as we were both named after my Grandfather Christy) and this transfer did not go down well with all however he went ahead with it and after a year out of football it went through.

Below are his thoughts on the matter....... 

"So folks its been a while since I’ve opined here on facebook and given the positive feedback I had the last time, I thought I’d have another go. The issue this time has to be the Seanie Johnston affair, saga, debacle, whatever you want to call it. As usual I have a lot to say but I have remained uncharacteristically tight lipped on the matter thus far. However, I feel I must speak up as I have been on the receiving end of quite a bit of slagging over this. I suppose it was to be expected as I am a Kildare man but crucially I too went against the “ethos” of the GAA, upped sticks and left my home club to swim with the bigger fish. Joe Brolly’s nonsense assessment of the issue on the Sunday Game 2 weeks ago was the second last straw “kildare people were hanging their heads in shame on the way into Croke Park”, “they’ve made fools of themselves” and ‘they’ve embarrassed the association”, but the fact that so many people agree with him and seem to ignore the appalling behavior of the GAA hierarchy on the issue is what I wish to address. 

So what exactly happened? Well I don’t exactly know. What I do know is the same as what everybody else knows. In order to make himself eligible to play inter-county football for Kildare, Seanie Johnston left his home club Cavan Gaels and transferred to St. Kevins (how Briar and JD missed out on getting him for Allenwood is still a sore point with me, surely if they had of mentioned how we absolutely shredded Kevins in the championship last year courtesy of a stunning goal from a certain serial facebook blogger he would have joined us, but I suppose Allenwood has a tradition of reserving their transfers for only the very best players). Anyhow, in the process he committed the worst sin possible in GAA, he pissed off the nation’s great assembly of gobshites and troglodytes, commonly known as GAA Central Council.

Seanie Johnston.

It’s well known in GAA circles that several clubs around the country send the 2 biggest idiots on the committee in to the County Board as their County Board delegates. It keeps them from interfering in club affairs and it lets them think they have an important job. A very active member of the Sarsfields club shared this information with me when I told him about the behaviour at my own transfer hearing. He also believed that most County Boards were dominated by people from the less successful clubs as the members from successful clubs were too busy looking after their own affairs. They had what he called a ‘junior mentality’. So what happens if each county board follows suit and sends their two biggest idiots into central council? I think everybody knows some old dinosaur in their own club, who is against everything, well imagine a room full of them. 

What did Seanie Johnston do that was so terrible? He wasn’t happy with Cavan and he was dropped from the panel don’t forget so what were his choices? Stay and not play inter-county football or leave and play inter-county football. He chose the latter and followed it through. He didn’t punch or kick anybody he didn’t even make a dirty tackle but somehow he still became GAA enemy No. 1. People have gone completely unpunished for assaulting and hospitalising others on the field but a lad who just wants to play football for another team is a far greater threat to the ethos of the GAA and requires far greater attention. 

The GAA was founded to promote Gaelic games and to encourage people to play gaelic games. That’s what Seanie Johnston is doing, he is playing as much gaelic football as he can. He is doing exactly what the GAA was founded for. What has Central Council’s response been, oh yes, they tried to ‘stop’ him from playing football? You can sugar coat it all you like and talk about parish rules and home clubs but ultimately they tried to stop him from playing football as they try to stop anybody from playing football for the club or county of their choice, if that choice differs from theirs. Not only that but they also almost stopped approximately 9 of the London team from playing inter-county football this year too when they introduced a rule to ‘stop’ people from playing for a new county. They didn’t give a damn about the London team when they introduced this silly rule in what was nothing short of a knee jerk reaction to one player not towing the party line. So who is really going against the ethos of the GAA and who the hell decides what the ethos of the Association is anyway? I don’t think Seanie Johnston or anybody else involved has anything to be ashamed of by circumventing this rule and lining out for Coill Dubh hurlers to make himself available for Kildare this year. Thomas Jefferson said “ridicule is our only weapon against unintelligible propositions”. The ridiculousness of this situation was created by the GAA hierarchy, Johnston and Co just beat them at their own game. Only a pity they couldn’t beat Meath as well to really put it all to bed.
If players were allowed transfer to the club of their choice it would ruin the GAA wouldn’t it? Players would go wherever they wanted, small clubs wouldn’t survive and we’d all turn protestant and start playing hockey. 

Scaremongering has preceded every major change in GAA policy from the foreign games ban and the opening of Croke Park to the formation of the GPA and its official recognition, how games continue to survive is a mystery. The fact is that most people want to play for their home club and that’s why they do it, not because of the ethos of the GAA or whatever Central Council tell us the ethos is. Most people that don’t want to play for their home club either go through the rigmarole of trying to get a transfer which usually involves not playing football for at least one year or they give up playing altogether. The process as it stands certainly does not promote the games or encourage people to play the games. Is it better to have more playing with the wrong clubs or less playing with the right clubs? It should also be noted that the ethos of the GAA is conveniently shelved when players transfer from strong clubs to weaker ones, maybe that strengthens the “junior mentality” theory of my informant from Sarsfields. 

I don’t really expect to win too many converts to my arguments here, people are naturally afraid of change and usually believe whatever they’re thought to believe. Added to that, when it comes to transfers, people see the little club as the victim rather than the mighty GAA but I think most reasonable people would have to agree that any shame, disgrace or embarrassment associated with this issue does not rest solely on the shoulders of Seanie Johnston or those in Kildare who were “complicit” as Joe Brolly put it. The system was flawed, they made it nonsensical and because he was able to trump them with a helmet and hurley, he’s the bad guy. 
“Democracy will prevail when men believe the vote of Judas as good as that of Jesus”. Thomas Carlyle"

Timmy Dowling 14/07/12

Timmy tried to transfer to Allenwood in 2004 and ended up not playing football for the full year, he was 24 years old. The following year he played in the Kildare Senior county final in Newbridge losing by 1 point to Moorefield. The year after that he was called up to the Kildare county panel where her remained for 3 years although never played a Championship match for Kildare. Most people would agree if he did not transfer he would never have gotten his chance with the county.


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