PILLARS OF SOCIETY : MICHAEL O' LEARY .......
From 'Phoenix' magazine , April 1986 .
Having fallen in love with ministerial office , Michaeel O' Leary entered a new age , developing a passion for the Labour Leader's job : alas , his ardour was to remain unrequited . It was his arch rival , Frank Cluskey , bearded like the bard , who won the horny hand of the Parliamentary Labour Party .
An alternative career now began to develop with our hero appearing , if not as a Justice , certainly before quite a few of them , in his advocate's role - " Full of wise saws and modern instances?" Well , hardly . However , after four years of sulking in the shadows , Micko finally received the call to arms following Frank Cluskey's election defeat in June 1981 . Jealous of honour , quick in quarrel , the new Labour 'General' eagerly sought the bubble reputation in the cannon's mouth . But the bubble was soon to burst .
Fifteen months later he discovered far too many hostile cannons trained upon him at the 1982 Labour Conference : his reputation in shreds , his policy shot to pieces , the embittered lost Labour Leader abandoned his troops , if not entitrely his 'cause' - and so to his sixth and latest age as ' a lean and slippered pantaloon...' , dwelling uneasily on the Fine Gael backbenches . A strange history indeed.......
PASSPORTS , PLEASE....... !
The latest passports for investment revelations involve a controversial £10,000 donation to Fianna Fail by US investor Gerry Lindzon .
There are grounds for suspicion that much of the money that changed hands in other deals was never intended for investment in the business but rather a 'facility fee' which accrued to the company for allowing its name to be used .
By Daire O' Brien .
First published in 'MAGILL' magazine , March 1999 .
When it was put to Brian O' Carroll that the political connections of C&D Foods could have helped in that company's application , he said that he could understand how such a " ...conclusion.." was drawn . According to the Dublin consultant previously quoted , some "...political contact was a requirement . The deal would need a sponsor (effectively a serving government Minister) to make representations on the company's behalf and explain why it would provide employment or protect jobs etc .. "
After the Masri affair broke , the rules for the issuing of passports seemed to tighten considerably . One London firm , which provides service in offshore company formation and foreign citizenship , describes what it terms '...the Rolls Royce..' of Irish citizenship in its promotional literature.
However, further enquiries by this reporter into the feasibility of receiving an Irish passport for investment were not received enthusiastically - we were told that "... Ireland is now very hard.." , but that Brazilian citizenship was still very much a runner ....... !
EMPIRES OF DUST .......
Britain's leaders talk about remodelling the world and its historians draw attention to the 'good side of the old empire' . But what about the reality ?
From 'MAGILL' magazine , March 2003 .
By Edel Brosnan .
Britain is learning to love its multicultural present but , like a Marxist turned management consultant , the nation that once ruled half the world is embarrassed about its past . Pride in the empire gave way to a vague sense of guilt - the " sorry we shot your grandad , stole your land and enslaved your people' syndrome .
To the delight of 'Daily Telegraph' readers everywhere , that might be about to change : historian Niall Ferguson - flag-waver-in-chief for the good old days- recently unleashed a hefty tome entitled ' Empire : How Britain Made The Modern World ' ('1169.....' Comment - we presume the word 'Suffer' is missing from the end of that title....) . It is being marketed as a shock-the-liberals special , and even had its own TV series on Channel 4 . Guess what ? Subject nations prospered under the kind rule of British masters ; the imperial adventure was a 'Force for Good' !
Come again...? Niall Ferguson is an entertaining figure , enthusiastic as a puppy-dog and just as photogenic , but this is just silly.......