tomkins What will be the legacy of the PD’s Galway girl?
THE inside of a politician’s mind must be an unsettling place to dwell. Seemingly ever eager to subject themselves to public derision, you may question why anybody would voluntarily undergo a John Bowman mauling on a Monday night, or worse, to be mercilessly devoured by Miriam O’Callaghan (not as appealing as it might read!) on one of RTE’s political affairs programmes.
Inconceivable as it might be for the majority of us to ever consider plopping ourselves into the scalding cauldron of political warfare, there are many ambitionists out there who dream of one day being the next Minister for Health or such likes. Have a word with Mary Harney and they might soon think twice. But then, Minister Harney is quite a remarkable lady. Through all the flak that has been hurled her way, you have to admire the manner in which she has stuck to task.
When she stepped down from her role as Tanaiste to concentrate on her ministerial responsibilities, there were calls for her to clear out her desk once and for all. But she declined. Yet as time ticks on, it has become more obvious that the Health situation in Ireland is far more complicated and irrepairable than the underfire Galway girl can ever hope to fix.
So she should take a leaf from Micheal Martin’s book. When the former Minister for Health introduced the smoking ban in 2004, his place in the annals of history was cemented forever. Forget his subsequent bungling act that was the Lisbon Treaty; mention the name Micheal Martin to the Main Street masses and most all will pat their healthy chests, hoover up a large breath of fresh air and tell you what they think of the sheriff who shot down those nasty sticks of ash.
With the future of the Progressive Democrats to go under the hammer next month, Mary Harney can only but skim the horizon and resign it to turbulent waters ahead. Now is the time for her to make that decisive move, akin to her succesful war on smog when she was Minister for the Environment and legislated for the banning of bituminous coal in Dublin.
For any Irish politician it must be all worth
THE recent furore over a bunch of beech trees felled on Cromwell’s Lane in Drogheda is somewhat baffling.
Residents in the town are up in arms that a huge chunk of history has been destroyed on the land of Eugene O’Connell and that the 18 trees the leader of the New Model Army once rode past should have been protected by the Town Council. Now if only Mr Cromwell had shown such kind regard for the residents of Drogheda back in the 1640s instead of butchering thousands of men, women and children, we might have a little more interest in preserving memories of the old devil.
A PLEASURE to see film legends Al Pacino and Robert de Niro back sharing the limelight together. Two of the best actors the world has produced are long overdue their on-screen reunion since they briefly worked together on Heat back in 1995. Now hopefully they’ll get to fulfill their ambition that they’ll collaborate on more projects in the future. Another