Watching the spectacular the Irish Election this weekend, I was caught up in the hooray for the death of Fianna Fail crowd. Until I realised the good people of Ireland, my erstwhile home, had just swapped one pack of muppets for another. I think Gene Kerrigan put the difference between the two parties well:
the right-wing…come clothed in party names drawn from a semi-mystical Gaelic past
We know the only time “real” change happens (hint it isn’t when Obama gets elected) is when shit. goes. down. And yet when Irish people are swimming in the shit they vote in the Red Setters to replace the Wolfhounds. Or whatever their fucking names mean.
In Australia if people have the gall to vote in someone not part of the established parties, end times arguments are raised. Gibbot says we need to do something here, I wonder if he means like how Ireland got Ming. Let’s hope he and his fellow FIFTEEN independents will be merciless and not attracted and destroyed by power like the Greens were before them. Especially if, like I suggested some days back, the Labour Party in Ireland – now the second biggest – gets its act together and realises its long term viability now can only be derived from being a strong opposition rather than being part of a Government unlikely to be able to deliver the quick fixes required even if it runs a full term. That likely outcome would deliver for Labour a repeat of the two steps back of 1997.
Change will only occur in Irish politics if people stop being fooled by the cloaked nature of the Fine Gael and Fianna Fail party machines. The difference between them are ancient idealogies which no longer apply, especially now the long held furphy that Fianna Fail were somehow a Progressive, for the people Party has finally been shattered.
If Irish people in the subsequent elections don’t continue to punish Fianna Fail for their recent failures it is more likely they will be a large part of the next Government than not. I won’t believe Fianna Fail are dead until I see the body. Only then and a matched reduction in support for Fine Gael will I believe “real” change has occurred – and even then I’d still be suspicious.