I hear there is some confusion internationally about Bertie’s ‘spot of bother’. People who are not familiar with how things are done in this banana republic are puzzled about certain aspects of the latest shenanigans in Ireland.
For example, Bertie justified his taking of money from one group because he knew them very well and from another group because he hardly knew them at all. On the question of taking money while holding the position of Minister for Finance, Bertie claims that on those specific occasions he was not a minister but merely a private citizen.
The explanation for these apparently puzzling and contradictory claims is simple. All Irish politicians, on election to office, are issued with a magic (Leprechaun) wand. The power of this wand is so great that it can physically change how the (Irish) human mind works.
So, when Bertie got on the plane to Manchester he was Minister for Finance. But half way across the Irish Sea, he waved his wand and in a flash, that knowledge was instantly wiped from the minds of all on board. This magic also works on those Irish living in Manchester but not on pagan foreigners. This is why foreigners tend to express astonishment at the shenanigans of the Irish but the Irish themselves usually reply –
“Shure, he’s only a poor lad over to meet friends” or “What money? shure, we saw no money.”
It also explains why Bertie can then return to Ireland and deliver lectures on accountability and honesty in Irish public life. Neither he nor his friends have any memory whatsoever of a Minister for Finance visiting Manchester.
They remember being in Manchester, they remember Bertie taking the money, but when he stuffed the loot into his back pocket, he was a private citizen. It was only after he waved the magic wand on the plane back to Ireland that he again became Minister for Finance.
Incidentally, Irish citizens are very familiar with the magic (Leprechaun) wand phenomenon at tribunals of inquiry.
Sadly, in recent years, the power of the wand has waned, so to speak. Some of this loss of power can be attributed to the contamination of good Irish blood by interbreeding with ‘dem godless foreign wimin.’ Education also has a fierce damaging affect on Leprechaun power. In fact, the power of the wand seems, nowadays, to be confined mostly to Fianna Fail politicians and their wand minded followers.
Michael McDowell, however, is showing signs of having been hit over the head with the Leprechaun wand as he contemplates the possibility that he might go down in history as the shortest serving Tanaiste ever.