Oliver Callan: St Patrick’s Day a party for phoney Ireland

Behind the shamrock blinkers and pleasant poetry, we’re just hypocrites

Taoiseach Enda Kenny in Washington on Thursday: elected a TD in 1975, he was in a better position than most to do something about the horrors that continued in his time. Photograph: Niall Carson/PA Wire

Taoiseach Enda Kenny in Washington on Thursday: elected a TD in 1975, he was in a better position than most to do something about the horrors that continued in his time. Photograph: Niall Carson/PA Wire

For a people renowned for nostalgia, we Irish sure know how to move on. We travelled from shame to pride within a week.

Having stopped to consider our darkest history for a few days, we decided we didn’t like the view and headed straight for green-lit buildings and shamrock. The U-turn was performed by well-tuned hands. Ministers abroad on extravagant trips which we’re constantly told are worth millions to the economy. We’ve been told a lot of things, and most of it turned out to be as fake as a March tan.

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