I WAS very disappointed to read Ross O'Carroll-Kelly in The Irish Times on Saturday. It's not that Ross hasn't been in flying form of late. It's just that I was hoping to confirm that the author had pulled a fine satiric stunt and persuaded Madam to move the column to the front page on Friday.The idea of Michael McDowell addressing a private audience at the Kildare Street and University Club about "true republicanism" just had to have been dreamt up by Ross's father and his sidekick Hennessy. It has all the hilarious absurdity of their myopic south Dublin self-regard.
But alas, no. There was Ross on his usual Saturday pedestal. Michael really was thrilling the private diners with flirtatious intimations of his own patriotic duty to save the Republic
Michael wouldn't recognise a republic if he shared a cell in Thornton Hall with it for 10 years.
And isnt Thornton hall Prison the place to look for PD/FF Republicanism. At €200k an acre of farmland for a prison that wont be open until about 2014 but still costs 125k a year. €3o million for a site worked €6 million. Shop around as Mary Harney used tell us.
Usefully o'Toole then examines what the essence of a Republic should be and tries to examine recent events against its benchmark.