Miracle for Ming
White smoke brings temporary relief for pointless Flanagan
Speaking of ringing endorsements, John Halligan of the technical group was designated speaker at Leaders’ Questions yesterday. He wanted to talk about units leased at huge expense by the IDA that are unoccupied. Can they not be used to help people who need help to get business enterprises off the ground?
Unfortunately, John hadn’t switched off his mobile phone. Phones cause havoc with the Dáil’s sound system, but for some reason deputies continually forget to switch them off in the chamber.
Halligan’s attempts to speak were hindered by a buzzing interference.
“The deputy should switch off his phone,” said the Ceann Comhairle.
Earlier, his technical group colleague Shane Ross said on radio he thought Ming’s actions were “mad”. Lord Ross would never find himself in such a situation because he claims not to possess a mobile phone, even though the Dáil gives him a hefty allowance to equip himself with one.
John made a half-hearted effort to support his besieged colleague. “Leave Deputy Flanagan out of it,” he chuckled.
But that really wasn’t possible around Leinster House. Flanagan’s pathetic attempts to spread the blame for his self-inflicted troubles by bringing a Garda sergeant and county council official into his sorry saga served only to infuriate deputies more.
The Taoiseach decided to remain above the debacle. Instead, he stuck to goading Gerry Adams, who has done the usual Sinn Féin trick of cleverly inventing a new name for an unpopular Government measure.
Henceforth, when a Sinn Féin politician is speaking about the property tax it will be called “the family home tax.”
Enda, meanwhile, was positively giddy in advance of his trip to the US. He loves going to the States, where folk don’t cringe at his gleeful high fives and lap up his mum’n’apple pie optimism.
The Taoiseach has a two-day visit to the European Council to get out of the way first, but by the time his stint in the Dáil was done at lunchtime, Enda was free from domestic inconveniences for the foreseeable future.
Now, if only Ming could find himself a similar bolthole. But that might be a miracle too far.