A coalition of FG and FF?
A chara, – Mary Hanafin suggests that a Fianna Fáil/Fine Gael coalition government would not be in the interests of the country (“Hanafin addition hurts FF chances, says councillor”, October 1st).
The two parties have almost identical political philosophies, are populated in the main by senior members from the same narrow range of social and professional backgrounds and both are host to an unhealthy number of TDs for whom a profession in politics is something akin to their “family business”. There is absolutely no rational basis for the suggestion that were they to form a coalition government this would somehow be bad for the country, unless Ms Hanafin is also of the opinion that either party governing alone would be equally disastrous. If she is, she should say so.
FF and FG are indeed like two old-style competing family companies who have battled it out for generations, with no little animosity along the way, and now face changing market conditions that lead both to privately concede that a dreaded merger is inevitable. In that eventuality, there will be unavoidable duplication of roles, rationalisation, loss of personal power bases and, yes, even redundancies. That is the real barrier to a FG/FF coalition, not some noble concern for the greater good of the Irish people.
It would be, as Bertie himself might have said, the thin end of the slippery slope. – Is mise,