O’Leary should steer our ship

Bray People - - News - SHEA­tomkins

COM­PE­TI­TION, by its very na­ture, is a mag­net for scur­rilous re­marks.

If you want to reach, and stay at num­ber one, then you must graft to en­sure that your ri­vals are kept firmly in their place. But it must be ex­e­cuted in a way that peo­ple are still go­ing to warm to you when you flash them that victory smile. Just ask Fer­gu­son, or Obama or even Ber­tie Ah­ern. And then you have Ryanair chief Michael O’Leary, him­self a mas­ter of com­pet­i­tive­ness.

Over the past few weeks he has been ev­ery­where, as his much pub­li­cised of­fer to take con­trol of Aer Lin­gus has been chewed up and spat out by most peo­ple with a func­tion­ing tongue.

You couldn’t call him a mag­nif­i­cent man of pres­ence but he does have that fac­tor that will make you want to hear more. Maybe his se­cret is that he tells the man on the street what he wants to hear.

In his re­cent ap­pear­ance on the Late Late Show he un­der­went a Kenny grilling and proved not just his ar­tic­u­late­ness but his in­tel­li­gence as well. He wasn’t there, at a time of re­ces­sion, to tell us all about how his mil­lions were made and sprin­kle salt in our wounds, he was there to tell us how he could help the na­tion out... and his own pocket.

O’Leary has the unique abil­ity to el­e­vate peo­ple, to put for­ward his plan for a route out of this ever-deep­en­ing quag­mire that the coun­try finds it­self sink­ing into. Ex­actly what we need when the coun­try is lack­ing real lead­er­ship.

How calm­ing would it be to turn on the news at six o’clock on any given evening and be re­as­sured by a ‘gen­eral’ who can tell us that there is a fin­ish­ing line in sight and that we will get there. In­stead we’re greeted by si­lence and left pon­der­ing over whether the Celtic Tiger re­ally ex­isted or if it was all built on hire pur­chase.

There are plenty who would talk down Michael O’Leary and his op­er­a­tions, ac­cus­ing him of be­ing a rogue.

But the rogue you know is far eas­ier to suf­fer than the one you’ll never be sure about.

PER­FECT PORK

GOOD on Cork butcher De­clan O’Flynn and his proac­tive re­sponse to the pork cri­sis by mish-mash­ing some beef, chicken and lamb to keep his sausage cus­tomers from chew­ing the leg of the kitchen ta­ble.

Ap­par­ently the new prod­ucts have proved so pop­u­lar that they are ex­pected to re­main a per­ma­nent fix­ture once all the pig­gies are al­lowed back on the mar­ket. But let’s face it, when it comes down to a good old fash­ioned plate of bangers and mash it’s pork that you want on your fork. Here’s hop­ing that the pig in­dus­try doesn’t suf­fer any fur­ther set­backs be­fore Christ­mas. For all in­volved.

LEO AND THE POGUE

THE leg­end of Shane McGowan con­tin­ues. Not only is he a mir­a­cle worker by con­sum­ing more al­co­hol in a life­time than six gen­er­a­tions of the Best fam­ily could only dream of but he’s now go­ing to be lighting up our screens this Christ­mas. Yes, Shane is ap­pear­ing in Fair City where he will per­form a duet with his old pal Leo Dowl­ing.

Let’s just pray that they get him ham­mered.

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