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Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Plus ça Change, Plus c'est la Même Chose

When the story first appeared in the Sunday Independent — officially Ireland's worst newspaper — two thoughts popped into everyone's head:
  1. What a dick.
  2. The timing means this can't be anything but a leak orchestrated by Fianna Fáil.

I fully expected the following days to be filled with great abuse heaped upon Deputy Sheehan by all quarters, while Sheehan's blueshirt colleagues hurl wild-eyed accusations of dirty trickery at Fianna Fáil. Apologies and resignations would follow from one party, sanctimonious denial and regret that such accusations were made from the other.

And so it came to pass.

Except it didn't.

Sure, Sheehan's gone. This was inevitable. But so far there hasn't been a peep of conspiracy from the Fine Gael backbenches. Could they finally have grown up? Have they weaned themselves from a knee-jerk blaming of the government for everything from unemployment levels to the extinction of the dinosaurs?

Or maybe Kenny's put the word out to everyone to shut the fuck up.

With a general election doubtless looming, the clever thing to do would be just hope it dies as a story. Given that the resignation came in more or less immediately, this seems to be the cunning plan, and it has every possibility of working. Fianna Fáil's only hope for making anything of this is if they turf out Biffo for his turpitudinous bingery, and that looks increasingly unlikely.

One question remains: why now? The answer is obvious; when faced with a problem like this, Enda's first instinct was to cover it up and hope for the best. It would've worked, too, if it hadn't been for those pesky kids at the Sindo and their anonymous benefactor.

The man who will probably be Taoiseach before the end of the year seems to have decided very quickly on a course of action upon hearing that one of his TDs was attempting to drive home pissed as a fart. That one of his TDs made would could be considered an earnest threat to a member of An Garda Síochána. He decides to adopt the Fianna Fáil strategy.

He waits for the story to break, and until he has no choice. He was quite content to leave the Guard concerned for her career; so concerned, in fact, that she had to mention it to higher-ups.

Imagine if Enda really meant all that bullshit he'd been spouting over the last few years. He'd have sat that prick Sheehan down the next morning, and made him write a letter of apology to the Guard in question. He'd then have fired him. Then, when Biffo makes an arse of himself two months later, the only thing that would've changed would be that Fine Gael would have a modicum of moral high ground.

If nothing else, it shows that Fine Gael are indeed headed towards being the largest party in the state for the first time. They're acting as if they already are.

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