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The Irish Government are Officially Taking the Piss


After 19 months of uncertainty, wilful obstruction, and – finally – some brief reprieve over the last four weeks, the Irish government has once again U-turned on its decision to throw the hospitality sector a lifetime.

From midnight on Thursday, all pubs, nightclubs and restaurants in the Republic of Ireland will have to close at midnight. For the music industry that means one very obvious thing: those weeks of frantic planning, scheduling, booking, organising and liaising by bookers, venue owners, artists and DJs? It was more or less all for nothing.

There’s no two ways about it: the Irish government are officially taking the piss. If there was lingering doubt as to their grasp of common sense regarding the pandemic, not to speak of their complete ignorance of the country’s nightlife economy and how it feeds into the broader economic health of the ROI, it has now been banished.

To call it kneejerk would be to imply that there was some vague thinking behind it. But it’s patently obvious that the cabinet are completely oblivious to three things: the immense collective effort and diligence put in by the Irish nightlife industry since reopening last month, the catastrophic effects these myopic decisions have on the health of the sector, and the fact that COVID-19 doesn’t suddenly discriminate when clocks strike midnight.

It was negligible to begin with but now it’s clear there’s no rationale anymore. Enough.