Miriam Lord’s week: Search continues for ‘straw that broke the camel’s back’
Colm Keaveney put his decision to resign this week down to a number of difficulties he has with the party policy but said Ruairí Quinn’s lack of response to his letter was the final straw.
The mystery of the missing email continues in Marlborough Street as staff in Ruairí Quinn’s department continue the search for Colm Keaveney’s “straw that broke the camel’s back.”
Keaveney, who resigned from the Labour Party on Wednesday, said he finally made up his mind to walk after a letter he sent to the Minister for Education about cuts to special needs services had been completely ignored.
He wrote to him last Friday requesting an urgent meeting to discuss the situation, but heard nothing back.
The outspoken East Galway TD was expelled from the parliamentary party last year after he voted against the budget.
But as a card carrying member of Labour, he remained chairman of the party, much to the irritation of head office and many of his erstwhile Government colleagues.
Keaveney put his decision to resign this week down to a number of difficulties he has with the party policy but said Ruairí Quinn’s lack of response to his letter was the final straw.
“There is little or no point in being Chair of the Labour party and being ignored when engaging with Labour ministers as you’re trying to articulate something that affects ordinary decent people in society,” he explained on Wednesday.
On Monday, after Keaveney first complained about getting no reply from Quinn, a spokeswoman for the Minister told journalists that Keaveney’s urgent communication had not been received.
Yesterday, a week and a disgusted resignation later, it still hadn’t landed.
“He said he sent it to the Minister’s Oireachtas address, but those emails are automatically forwarded to the Department,” said the spokeswoman. “Everything comes through the secretariat, but nothing has been received here. We’ve been checking. It must be stuck in cyberspace or something.”
Maybe Colm hit the wrong button. Because they’re adamant in Marlborough Street: “It’s hard to ignore something that you haven’t seen.”
Music at the Áras comes to soothe the soul
It’s been a bad week for the blood pressure. So let’s not think for a while about those loathsome Anglo braggarts lying about pulling imaginary billions out of their mangy Celtic Tiger arses.
Let’s not think about them slinking away after leaving the country in turmoil. They’re busy reinventing themselves in sunny exile, getting back in the all-important game while conveniently going bankrupt in the luxury to which they still feel entitled.
Oh, a desperate week for the nerves.
We’ll have some music instead, courtesy of our Celtic President, who is doing his best to waft away the pong from the putrefying Tiger.
Michael D has invited the Dublin Welsh Male Voice Choir to sing at his summer party in the Áras on Tuesday. Their musical director, Geraint Waters, is originally from Cwmgwrach, a village in the upper Neath Valley, but has been resident in Ireland for more than 25 years.
The President has put in a special request for the choir to sing The Sunset Poem from the Dylan Thomas radio play Under Milk Wood. The song begins: “Every morning when I wake/ Dear Lord, a little prayer I make / O please do keep Thy lovely eye / On all poor creatures born to die.”
Guests at the Áras will also be treated to The Chorus of the Hebrew Slaves from Verdi’s Nabucco. We don’t know whether the lyrics will be updated for today’s Anglo Slaves, enduring to the last, having drunk from the cup of affliction and shed bitter tears of repentance.
Their American Trilogy medley is sure to be of comfort, with Battle Hymn of the Republic and All My Trials, Lord and that big Anglo favourite, Dixie, which the boys brazenly whistled while waving the financial system down the Swanee.