Up in the Polls and Up in the Air
Deaglán de Bréadún
The latest Sunday Business Post poll as well as the last poll in The Irish Times show a modest revival in Fianna Fail’s standing with the public. Clearly they will be hoping to hang in for as long as possible and stave off the general election until they are in a position to win or at least emerge with only minimal damage.It’s a challenge for the Opposition parties to maintain their momentum. Not an easy task when Government has all the power and therefore holds most of the aces.
I have been reading Bertie Ahern’s account of the Reynolds-Spring government of 1992-94. The relationship between the two party leaders at that time was such that a break-up was more or less inevitable.
The interaction between Cowen and Gormley and between FF and the Greens seems rather better, on the surface. There was an interesting story by Eamon Keane in the Sunday Independent yesterday where he suggested Dan Boyle had threatened to resign over the banking inquiry. Dan is a Senator and not in Cabinet (although he could be) but if he quit it would have had a destabilising effect. (Yes, yes, I know the cynics will dismiss Dan as a Paper Tiger who talks the talk but doesn’t walk the walk: the same cynics should form their own party, it would be the biggest of the lot.)
Covering the interminable talks in the North must be beyond tedium for the journalists involved. There is such a thing as prolonging the dramatic tension for too long. If and when there is a deal, will anyone care or notice at that stage?
Aficionados of political film-making should check out Up in the Air and Precious. The former is something of a star vehicle for George Clooney but interesting in its way as a reflection of the unemployment surge in the US. Precious is a startling portrayal of the life of a group of people (you could hardly call them a family) in the Harlem ghetto in New York City. Quite searing at times. I’m looking forward to seeing Clint Eastwood’s Invictus, on Nelson Mandela. We had a good lively discussion on the Blog about Eastwood’s last movie, remember?