Politics is a funny old business. You’re here today and gone tomorrow – as Philomena Begley used to sing. However, Enda Kenny lasted a long time, longer than I, or most people, expected. He had not a lot going for him –not much of charisma which is supposed to be necessary for a politician and certainly for a political leader. I think he had some of that old Mayo charm which helped him to get along. He used it to full effect –at home and in Europe. He was good with people, attended all Mayo matches in Croke Park and appeared at all important events for the last 20 years. I bumped into him one day about ten years ago when he was canvassing in Donegal town and I thought to myself ‘that fella will not go far.’ But begob and begorrah- I was wrong. He went the full distance and became Taoiseach of the 26 counties. Amazing what can happen when you’ve got chutzpah! Look at Mr Trump.
I remember when Enda made a fierce attack on the Irish church one year after the Cloyne report and he had ‘very many priests’ writing to tell him what a great fella he was for closing down the Irish embassy in the Vatican. I wrote to the Irish Times to say that I was not one of the priests who wrote to congratulate him. I did not like his politics and I do not like Fine Gale politics. I have not much time for Fianna Fail politics either. They are both opportunistic and focussed only on maintaining the status quo in the 26 counties – which favours the rich. They ignored the plight of nationalists in the six counties during the British reign of terror(1969-1994). They have made no attempt to offer a strategy for reunifying this country which would be in the best interests of all the people living on this small island. There is a lot of what is called ‘cute hoor politics’ in the south. It’s about who you know and about keeping the money people on board.
I have not much interest in who becomes leader of FG. It’s six of one and half a dozen of the other. It looks like we will be putting up with these politics for some years to come -until a party and leader representing the working class people, the republican people is elected to government. Only then will there be any possibility of real change in favour of the marginalised. Until that day comes the soup kitchens will continue to flourish in Dublin and elsewhere and the numbers of homeless will increase. Enda contributed little by way of justice and equality to the people of the 26 counties. He contributed little or nothing to the north. He will hardly be missed.