Enda Kenny: he did it his way

Sic transit gloria Enda – With the sun setting in the West, we bid farewell to the Mayo primary school teacher who was fortunate enough to have a father who was a TD. End slipped into his late father’s seat in the 1970s and has occupied it comfortably since.

As I discovered when I interviewed him three years ago, he was charming in an old-fashioned way. Bertie Ahern has been described as the Teflon Taoiseach; Enda would give him a run for his money. To take one example: the water protest, which saw tens of thousands taking to the streets, somehow managed to hit other targets than the man in the Taoiseach’s chair. Likewise the long-standing scandal of homeless families, particularly in Dublin. And while a traditional Catholic from Mayo, he presented himself as a defender against Church scandals, castigating the powers and actions of Catholic clergy. If he’d managed to be around when Mayo finally won an All-Ireland Football Final, he’d probably have been canonised in Castlebar before the end of the year.

And the north? Enda was very aware of the border. That is, he used the actions of the IRA in the north to deflect any question – economic, social services, health – put to him by Gerry Adams.

When a new Taoiseach takes over from an old one, people look for continuity. Using that criterion, Fine Gael supporters should relax, if one of the two front runners – Leo Varadkar and Simon Coveney – succeeds Enda. Coveney made a point of being food for hungry cameras when he attended the funeral of Martin McGuinness. Leo Varadkar, in contrast, made one of his first television appearances when, from RTÉ’s Late Late Show’s studio audience, he accused Gerry Adams of putting at risk peace in the north.

Has Enda shown a burning concern about his fellow countrymen and women north of the border? Pass. Apart from the two set-pieces mentioned, has Simon or Leo shown a deep concern to move things forward north of the border? Pass.

As far as Irish people north of Dundalk and Bridgend are concerned, it’ll be heaped plates of plus ca change etc all round.

8 Responses to Enda Kenny: he did it his way

  1. billy May 18, 2017 at 9:14 am #

    enda was very aware of the border………….
    yes he was aware that thresa may was right with her.there will be no return to the borders of the past..it is now being played down by the media that the custom checks will be imposed by dublin under orders from germany on the southern side of the border.maybe he couldnt hack dividing ireland twice.

  2. Cal May 18, 2017 at 9:15 am #

    Please not Leo.

  3. PremierMan15 May 18, 2017 at 11:26 am #

    Don’t worry Cal-I have it on good authority that Varadkar isn’t well-liked with older,conservative farmers-FG’s core voter outside of greater Dublin area.He is a little too in love with himself for many folks liking.Coveney is a solid pair of hands and won’t rock the status quo…he has been vocal on the south’s being legally obliged to introduce water charges which will have been noticed by most informed types and he is my favourite to be our puppet leader under the aegis of the EU.

  4. billy May 18, 2017 at 12:01 pm #

    leos support of bringing more migrants and refugees into an already overcrowded housing crisis isnt going down well in towns and villages already overrun.suppose it doesnt matter who gets the post as germany dictates what happens and doesnt happen.

    • Mark May 18, 2017 at 2:29 pm #

      Billy, once again I find myself agreeing withyou. There is a crisis, in Dublin city centre, dozens of Irish women and men in damp sleeping bags, no home, no hope, at the same time the Clintonesque FF-FG-ILP-SF ,type push for cultures at odds with the indigenous, which our forefathers fought and died for, including our language, yet they now subvert to lesser.
      There is a substantial breakdown, and that is the why in myself, my Son voting Brexit.

  5. Mark May 18, 2017 at 12:09 pm #

    One could say ‘don’t let the door hit yer ass on your way out’ but, I am concerned in that, the divil ye know is always better than the divil ye don’t.
    Varadkar is a jumped up, one time medic, representing Dublin north, Coveney, like Enda, an inheritor of his late father’s seat, a graduate of Agriculture, when minister for Agriculture, stated Ireland’s two most exported vegetables were spuds and mushrooms.
    Hopefully the Willie O Dea idea of reviewing the support for minority government will gain traction and we can go to the polls again by Nov.
    We’ll leave it there so.

  6. Scott Rutherford May 18, 2017 at 1:26 pm #

    Fair play to Enda Kenny, he came into government at one of the darkest periods and successfully steered Ireland through stormy seas adding 220,000 jobs from the time he took office till the time he left.

    Did he make all the right decisions and create Shangra La? Of course not no politician/political party can ever create a utopian society and no one should be fooled by the ones that promise they will.

    He was dealt a bad hand and he played it as well he could. Well played Enda.

    • Mark May 18, 2017 at 2:23 pm #

      He lrd a political party which wanted the previous government to further deregulate, he was substantially more to blame for the economic crisis than McCrevey and Ahern, facts remain facts, an opposition leader is supposed to oppose, not push for greater.