The eagle has landed, the Messiah has returned, the cavalry has arrived – Brian Cowen made a speech that has, apparently, changed the universe.
Well, not really but he did get the media all excited. I suspect this is because many in the media predicted that Cowen was indeed the long awaited Messiah and now, apparently, he was delivering on their over rated predictions.
On Morning Ireland (5th report, 2nd item) Aine Lawlor and Harry Magee, political journalist with the Irish Times and the only media person present at the ‘historic’ event were overwhelmed with admiration for the Great Leader.
A ‘tsunami of extemporaneous prose’, he didn’t pull his punches, there was a pulse, a tempo and a passion that some said Cowen had lost, gushed Magee.
Lawlor, (In a reverential and hushed tone) “Almost – Yes, we can?”
Magee immediately agreed. “I think there are a couple of lines in there that Obama would not have thrown away lightly – some of his speech was almost poetic for an Irish politician.”
The media excitement continued on Today with Pat Kenny (Friday).
He’s a man, who, this time, eyeballed you all, said Pat (in an awed tone) to businessman Martin Murphy who was actually at the great event. (Will Cowen’s speech morph into a GPO type phenomenon where every mother and her son will claim to have been present?).
Yes, said Martin. He’s a man who’s on top of his job, a man who has his finger on the pulse, bringing people with him, it was all about leadership, he stepped up to the plate.
Gina Quin, CEO of Dublin Chamber of Commerce, was beside herself with excitement.
“He was absolutely dynamic on the night – People were saying two words – Barack Obama.”
(We remember that this is the same Gina who described Sean Fitzpatrick’s dodgy ‘loan transfers’ as ‘one small unfortunate incident.’).
Sadly, for the media and business world, ordinary Irish citizens did not agree. There was a massive response from the general public and with the exception of one or two callers the reaction to Cowen’s speech was negative and very, very angry. It was clear that Pat Kenny was genuinely puzzled at the level of anger being expressed by ordinary citizens.
One caller, a plumber, who had just lost his job.
“I’m paying €1,200 per month mortgage and €1,600 per year to a management fees company that I can’t even contact. I lost my job over a month ago and I’m still waiting for benefit. Brian Cowen’s call to arms means nothing to me.”
Other callers thought the speech was nauseating, vacuous and full of empty rhetoric. A speech made in front of and for the benefit of rich people who weren’t being asked to take any of the pain.
The Great Man granted an interview to Marian Finucane on Saturday. Here’s some of what he had to say.
Throughout the interview he maintained that the crisis was international. Marian never made any serious challenge to this dishonest stance.
He said people were wrong to say there was any connection between Fianna Fail and developers. Marion made no serious challenge to this dishonest claim.
Governance issues in relation to banks are now being investigated by ODCE., he said. This is a joke. It’s an absolute certainty that ODCE will never bring a single banker to account.
On remuneration for bankers – “we’ve set up a committee to look into it.”
On the spontaneity of his speech.
“I knew the Dublin Chamber of Commerce had arrangements to tape my speech.”
On getting angry when criticised in Dail Eireann.
“Listen, the Dail has its own little realty, thing’s are very serious. We all have to cop ourselves on to be honest.”