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  • irishtimes.com - Posted: September 29, 2009 @ 9:39 am

    Final days

    Harry McGee

    I have kept the title of this morning’s offering broad because it suits the two slightly disparate themes – though the outcome of both will be the same if the Government messes up on either.

    I have been out and about with canvassers over the past few days. The areas I have been in, on the most part, have been blue collar and commuter belts. What has been really noticable has been the cohort of don’t knows. Maybe it’s the so-called demographic I have been encountering but it seems much much higher then we recorded in our poll of 19per cent.Don’t knows have been converting two to one to the No camp. I’m not for a second suggesting the percentage of uncommitted is as high as last year.

    And I suspect more don’t knows won’t vote this year. But the referendum outcome just does not look as clearcut today as a month ago. An element of uncertainty has crept in.

    Final days too for Gordon Brown. He delivers his last leader’s speech to the Labour conference in Brighton, before the general election in 2010. For many, the second clause of the last sentence is superfluous. Brown is in trouble and from this vantage point his situation looks unrecoverable. All of his flaws have been exposed (even his eyesight and general health have become major issues).

    His passage is like that of a small boat in an Atlantic storm. You get over one roller only to be confronted with another enormous one. The battle is endless knowing the boat may have to be scuppered at any moment.

    Brian Cowen’s Coalition is in similar straits. Those around him talk constantly about his mastery of the brief. But that’s not evident at all. Cowen needs to be in form to perform strongly in public. Mostly he’s not as was evidenced by Richard Crowley’s mastery of him last Sunday. For a long time I thought he was pursuing a rope-a-dope strategy. But there’s no sign of a sudden spring to action.

    No sign of that happening any time soon.

    You wonder how many leader’s speeches he has left in him.

    • Mursheen Durkanski says:

      There might be one leader’s speech left in Brian Cowen – on Saturday evening, after Lisbon is sunk. The people have been abused and taken for granted by the political machine which operates as a remote elite. They operate to different rules to everyone else, with standards which would lead to the door in most jobs in the real world. Bankrupting your company, profligate expense-claiming, and failing to know company policy (plus nonsense like ‘Einstein’s Theory of Evolution’ – which would fail on a pass Junior Cert science paper) for starters. The Eurocrats and leaders will learn how costly John O’Donoghue’s junkets and Brian’s buddy Rody Molloy’s activities really were, a most expensive €1.5M which has disgusted the nation. Yeah, vote yes to Europe because we need it so badly – because us shower in charge are incapable, this pathetic admission which is what their campaign strategy really is, and an insult to the independence, proud history and the potential of the people of Ireland. The people are not eejits, despite the barrage of Yessery they have been subjected to, from big business and the likes of lobbyist Pat Cox and ‘civic leaders’ like Peter Sutherland of Goldman Sachs and BP fame and Olivia Buckley, working for a Yes group after she worked on behalf of the Referendum Commission and in the Fianna Fáil press office http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/northern_ireland/7447394.stm)

      Some of this would actually be comic if in a drama, and not actually happening. The people are not mugs – the ‘elite’ operate on the basis that they are. They’ll get their response on Friday, to their message of fear. They are the ones who should fear most because their day is long gone. A new politics is coming – the pain people will feel and are feeling already means that it’s dawning on everyone that running the country is too serious a business to leave to gobdaws and dynastic political in-breds. The door please, Mr Cowen, and off to Offaly with you.

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