Eamo and metamorphosis time at the S•••o…


Sometimes I have to pinch myself to realise I’m awake. One such case occurred yesterday, when the present Mrs Collins directed my attention to a six-minute video interview of Eamon Dunphy by Barry Egan  from the S***o. 

The amazing part, like a dog walking on its hind legs, was not that it was done well but that it was done at all. Not too long ago – say, before the last elections? – the S***o would have walked hot coals while sticking needles in its eyes before producing an interview that used “Gerry Adams”  and “ Taoiseach” in the same sentence.

“Eh?” you say. “Presumably it was a sentence which went something like ‘The Taoiseach yesterday said Gerry Adams was a man of violence and he could not look at him for more than two minutes without being sick to his stomach?’ ”  No, I’m afraid not. In the course of the interview the suggestion that Gerry Adams might one day be Taoiseach was put forward as a real possibility.

But the best part – the most realistic part – was when Dunphy confronted the Jean McConville question. I don’t think he actually dealt with whether or not Gerry Adams was implicated in her death; instead Dunphy noted that the McConville death occurred 42 years ago. Forty-two years before that, he pointed out, Michael Collins was around and was killing people  (and yes, Virginia, Eamon’s not too good at Maths – it’s more like 52 years). As was Sean Lemass. As was Ryan Tubridy’s grandfather. All men of violence. So we’d do well to keep in mind, Eamo said, that this state ( in the south) was founded on violence, whether we like it or not. And that it was a bit rich for people nowadays to get holier-than-thou with the likes of Gerry Adams. He also said that while there’d always be a small number who’d never accept Sinn Féin, the quality of TDs they were producing – younger people like  Mary Lou McDonald and  Pearse Doherty and Eoin O Broin (not yet a TD but certain to be elected in the next election)   – made other parties look frankly dopey. Eamon went on to make some withering comparisons between Gerry Adams and my good friend Enda Kenny, saying that Adams was a far more astute politician and Enda “hadn’t a clue”. Mind you, he suggested sending Michael O’Leary to Europe to deal with the Troika, which struck me at first as bizarre and then as maybe not a bad idea, since he might stay there.

But the interview was frank about how things have changed in the southern state. Dunphy himself said that he and the likes of my other good friend Eoghan Harris had been ardent revisionists at the time of the Troubles, but that Gerry Adams and Martin McGuinness had done what republicans of Collins and Lemass’s era had never done: they’d successfully removed the gun from Irish politics, had entered politics and had made enormous headway. But why am I telling   you all this? Dig the video up – it’s out there somewhere.  And get someone to stand by as Chief Nipper.

11 Responses to Eamo and metamorphosis time at the S•••o…

  1. madadh mór June 10, 2014 at 4:00 pm #

    Can’t find the bit about the hooded men, Jude. Am I going senile?

    • Jude Collins June 10, 2014 at 5:18 pm #

      It’s in ‘RTÉ changes tack’ , mm…

  2. Francis D June 10, 2014 at 4:15 pm #

    ……..? It would be cynical to think Dunphy was merely getting his photo taken before he is left behind by the Tide. A later picture of the SF ground swell will see the old photos taken out……..Where’s Wally? Ah, there he is, ‘I was here all along’ Croked Dunphy, ‘I had a dream’,-I’ll take that nip now Jude.

  3. Argenta June 10, 2014 at 4:41 pm #

    It would be optimistic to expect consistency in political matters from Dunphy.I seem to remember that around the times of the Hume/Adams talks,he and other commentators in the Sindo routinely vilified John Hume.One wonders why that papers show biz correspondent (Barry Egan) was tasked to interview Dunphy.I’m reminded of the great Groucho Marx quote ” These are my principles–if you don’t like them,I’ve got other ones”!

  4. Iolar June 10, 2014 at 5:04 pm #

    Correct me if I am wrong. Didn’t Gregor Samsa wake up to find himself metamorphosed into an insect like creature. His parents and sisters were repulsed by the horrible creature Gregor had become.

    • Francis D June 10, 2014 at 5:46 pm #

      Dunphy is metamorphing from a Slug into a golden fringed white butterfly sitting proudly on a green, green leaf for the centenary of 1916 to come. If there was a Revolution I would challenge anyone to deny the Starry Plough Tatoo he had on his neck was no mere transfer but he’d always been a Connollyite. So much cynicism for this darling of old Erin….a very beautiful man he is.

  5. RJC June 11, 2014 at 7:32 am #

    Slightly off topic, but this piece over on Mr Mallie’s site by Colm Dore is well worth a read


    • paddykool June 11, 2014 at 8:15 am #

      Excellent piece RJC …certainly worth a look.

    • paul June 12, 2014 at 12:23 am #


  6. Maggie May June 11, 2014 at 10:11 am #

    Yes Jude ‘the times they are a changing’. I remember sitting in the Guildhall in Derry while Eamon Dunphy and Vincent Browne lectured the audience on the ‘men of violence’, a phrase commonly used then by Church and State to denounce the IRA volunteers. Ner a word of condemnation for the British State whose soldiers were patrolling outside

    • paul June 11, 2014 at 3:32 pm #

      Dunphy is a windbag enamored with the sound of his own voice. His one sided condemnations of republicans while ignoring the excesses of the forces of the state were astounding