jump to navigation

‘Posh schooled’ ‘cliques’ and the ‘ordinary member of the public’ leading this state… June 23, 2017

Posted by WorldbyStorm in Uncategorized.


Reading a headline in the IT that Leo Varadkar was right to defend Whelan court move I made a mental bet with myself that the author of the piece would have the initials SC. And so it was, Stephen Collins who writes what is effectively a defence of the status quo in relation to the Whelan appointment.

First he exculpates Varadkar from responsibility.

He managed to cope with the first assault on his position reasonably well, given that he was on a sticky wicket over the way the former attorney-general Máire Whelan was appointed to the judiciary on the last day of former taoiseach Enda Kenny’s tenure.

Then suggests that he was forced into what he did…

Varadkar was left to carry the can for what was essentially his predecessor’s final act. He was in a no-win position but made the decision to defend the appointment and try to move on to next business as quickly as possible.

And then argues there was no alternative.

In the circumstances it was the right option because any sign of a wobble or second thoughts would have made a bad situation worse. Look what happened to May when she panicked in the face of criticism and abandoned her election manifesto in the middle of the British general election campaign.

Er. Come again? It’s hardly like and like.

There’s more. Not least a defence of Whelan against the ‘arrogant’ ‘posh schooled’ ‘cliques’ of the Law Library which seems breathtakingly beside the point.

Interestingly Collins dismisses the idea that this is like the Whelehan appointment in 1994 arguing…

…there is a crucial political difference between the two cases. The Labour members of cabinet walked out when Whelehan’s nomination was proposed but Fianna Fáil went ahead regardless and the party lost power as a result.

First Collins throws in some diversionary stuff…

In the current case the Independent Ministers Shane Ross and Finian McGrath accepted the decision and because of that are as committed to it as their Fine Gael colleagues.

And then glides over the single most proximate point…

Given that the controversy wasn’t of his making, although he was a member of the cabinet which signed off on the appointment, Varadkar put up a stout defence in the Dáil over the past two days.

Meanwhile, on another aspect entirely, this is priceless…

Varadkar had an easier time dealing with Sinn Féin leader Gerry Adams, who attempted to embarrass him for expressing childlike excitement at going into 10 Downing Street on Monday. His observation that it reminded him of the scene in the film Love Actually, when fictional prime minister Hugh Grant waltzed down the stairs of the building was picked up in the international media.

While some of his colleagues cringed with embarrassment at Varadkar’s remark its gaucheness actually reflected one of the key reasons for his popularity to date. He responds to situations like an ordinary member of the public rather than a professional politician.

What popularity? The man has never been tested in a General Election as leader of a party. The polling evidence to date suggests no swing to FG. This is near enough entirely a media construct. And as for ‘posh schooled’ cliques…


1. GW - June 23, 2017

Our glorious leader – a little bit of Trumpian oafishness, lot’s of Tory certainty and TINAness.

Hey, what’s not to like? What could possibly go wrong?

So to descend to the ‘ordinary member of the public’ (how patronising is that phrase?) level – the trouble with SC and his tribe is that having your head so firmly lodged between someone’s buttocks obscures your vision.

Liked by 1 person

2. 6to5against - June 23, 2017

so, If I understand correctly, T May had such a disastrous election not because of the Tory manifesto and their policies, but because she did not defend that demonstrably unpopular manifesto when it was challenged?

It’s in keeping with his belief that parties following right wing ideology here will be rewarded for the ‘maturity’ in elections.

Liked by 1 person

ivorthorne - June 24, 2017

Collins would make a terrible stock trader. No doubt, he’d make a decision that cost billions, then double down in the certain belief that reversing a decision that he believed to be correct would be the real mistake.

Having said that, it was not just what was in the manifesto that harmed May, but the damage it caused to May’s “strong and stable” brand. Ultimately, the majority, more often than not, prefer Labour policies but the Cons are viewed as more competent on economic matters. May looked anything but competent during that campaign.


3. ringacoltig - June 24, 2017

Varadkar was not “left to carry the can for what was essentially his predecessor’s final act” and it was not just his membership of the cabinet which gave him collective responsibility for Whelan’s appointment. Varadkar became leader of Fine Gael on 2nd June 2017 but Whelan’s appointment wasn’t made until 13th June. While this was signed off by Enda Kenny on his last day as Taoiseach, it is unlikely Kenny would have made the appointment without getting the nod from his party leader – Leo Varadkar. Leo was in charge of Fine Gael from the date of his appointment thus he must take responsibility.


WorldbyStorm - June 24, 2017

That’s a very good point ringacoltig.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: