Gilmore – Impossible to be principled within a corrupt system

The only way to understand political events in Ireland is to be aware that the entire system is intrinsically corrupt. Once that understanding is in place everything falls into place, once that fact is understood and accepted, puzzlement disappears. The O’Donoghue scandal is a case in point.

O’Donoghue was doing what practically every politician has been doing for decades – working a system set up by politicians for the benefit of politicians and faithfully operated by loyal civil servants. The corrupt expenses system is part of the corrupt political system and the corrupt political system is part of a national corruption that has diseased every level of Irish society.

That’s why opposition politicians ignored the O’Donoghue scandal for so long; they’re part of the system. When the pressure became too much one of them, Eamon Gilmore, broke ranks in an attempt to distance himself and his party from the fallout and, at the same time, earn some brownie points.

Only the politically ignorant will be fooled by Gilmore’s stunt. If he genuinely had the interests of citizens at heart he would have acted to end the expenses scam years ago. Instead, he and his party colleagues work the system with the same gusto as most other political parties.

For so long as everyone operating the corrupt system plays by the rules there’s no problem. But if an honest politician appears on the scene (to date, this has never happened) or a crisis triggers a panic as happened in this case then things begin to fall apart.

This was clear on Today with Pat Kenny (Wed) when Conor Lenihan, in an attempt to hang Eamon Gilmore, effectively admitted that the system is rotten.

Lenihan put an end to Gilmore’s high sounding (fake) words by simply asking him why Pat Rabbitte, Labour’s representative on the Oireachtas Commission, never objected to O’Donoghue’s expenses or the appointment of a political advisor to the Ceann Comhairle.

Gilmore spluttered and waffled but was unable to provide an explanation.

When politicians, who happily and without scruples operate all their working lives within a corrupt system, suddenly become principled, their hypocrisy is inevitably going to be exposed by their former co-conspirators.

3 thoughts on “Gilmore – Impossible to be principled within a corrupt system”

  1. Heard Elaine Byrne – Irish Times columnist who is writing a big book (it ought to be!) about corruption in Irish politics from the 1800 to the present – say this morning on Morning Ireland that while the Irish electorate continue to reward corrupt behaviour and punish integrity (witness Michael Lowry and sympathy shown to John O’Donoghue in Kerry vox pop) then corruption will continue. Ireland – a hopeless case!

  2. An open letter to Pat Kenny:
    Dear Mr Kenny,
    In your day,you have interviewed: ” Bertie”, “Charlie”, “Seanie”,
    (Fitz) “Rody”, and “Liamie” (Lawlor) and every nasty class of dog
    with a pet name like a friendly poodle.
    Why do the biggest scoundrels in the nation all have “pet names”.?
    If fools in Brazil or Bogota wish to pay the Washington speakers
    Bureau huge sums, to listen to discredited Irish politicians lecturing
    them on how to create an “economic powerhouse” in Latin America then
    as the Danes say:”The last fool has not been born yet”.No problem.
    However I and many thousands of good citizens of this island (Ireland)
    strongly resent being unwillingly treated to similar showmanship-and
    having to pay for the dubious privilege.
    Your salary scales in RTE are very high.Some would say
    obscene.Particularly as we listners (or non listeners)- are fined or
    jailed, for refusing to finance your unnecessary public financed radio
    and TV stations
    Perhaps there is an unspoken agreement therefore; between your
    political paymasters and yourselves, to the effect that ordinary
    citizens who bankroll you both to such a degree that you continue to
    prosper happily when independent television stations are making
    cutbacks;- must suffer the indignity of listening to the formerly
    highest public representative in the country; waffling about his
    autobiography.I This man would be a social pariah were he living in
    Bombay or Beijing.
    He would not be getting free publicity on the national radio and TV
    station. He would be rightfully boycotted.
    If a lie must be called an “untruth” in “Dail-Eireann speak: fair enough.
    I put it to you mr Kenny, that a liar and a scoundrel; or an
    “untruther” and a scoundrel, has no place on your TV programme.
    No more than Ray Burke has; nor Liam Lawlor; nor C.J. Haughey, would
    have were they still offending us by their earthly presence;
    were either of them to be exhumed, and revivified, from the putrid
    soil which probably nourished flowers before their remains were placed
    Corruption in political life is not a “Game” as Ahern has often
    described his admittedly canny, successful career in buying enough
    votes to get re-elected three times in a row.
    The 5000 taxi drivers he bought in his Dublin constituency 25 years
    ago caused havoc with a shortage of public transport for years.
    His later reverse tack to save his own hide from Mata Hearney, has led
    to chaos and poverty today for many in the same industry
    The taxes he misused to” buy ” the last two elections with, has led
    to people actually dying while waiting for hospital treatment
    (remember Susie Long).
    I have no doubt that reflection rarely crosses his mind.
    The day of reckoning has arrived for his party, and not only is the
    kitty empty-but his Dept of Finance cronies are borrowing money to pay
    public sector wages while planning cutbacks in social welfare and new
    stealth taxes helpfully disguised as “Green” taxes by the now
    universally despised Gormley Gang.
    Further cutbacks in Health are almost inconceivable, so bad is the
    situation at present (It never really changed during his three terms
    in office.)
    That overpaid ass*ole Tubridy would interview Jack the Ripper to try
    and get back a few of the viewers who used to watch the late late
    show, and now turn off RTE every
    morning between 9 and 10 am. Your own programme Mr Kenny has always
    been entertaining while serious and probing, asking the right
    You would greatly enhance your already high status with those of us
    who listen to your broadcasts regularly were you to decline
    interviewing this obnoxious politician,Ahern,
    who believes he can still strut the stage like an ostrich, totally
    shameless and unrepentant.
    Yours etc, John McDermott.

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