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How Fianna Fail sees itself.

Posted by Jason O on Apr 29, 2010 in Irish Politics |

A curiously honest statement.

A curiously honest statement.

I stumbled across this on Fianna Fail’s website, and I have to say that I’m fascinated by it, because it is a wonderfully accurate declaration of how FF see themselves, certainly far more honest than I think FF actually mean it to be. My comments are in italics.

“Fianna Fáil represents the mainstream of Irish life. FF gets 42% of the vote, which is a minority, which means that a majority of Irish people are not in the mainstream? It is the only party which on several occasions has commanded overall majorities in Dáil Éireann. This is the second line, and already they’re talking about winning stuff as opposed to why they want to win, which is, I suspect, the way most FF candidates think. Since its foundation Fianna Fáil has been the single most coherent Coherent? They’ve been against the Anglo-Irish Agreement, in favour of it, against extradition, in favour of it, against divorce, in favour of it, against the single european act, in favour of it, against partnership for peace, in favour of it, against cutbacks, in favour of them, against tax cuts, in favour of them, against contraception, in favour of it, against coalition, in favour of it, force in Irish politics, so much so indeed that alternative governments have been characterised by their opposition to Fianna Fáil as their only common bond. Electorally Fianna Fáil is second only to the Social Democrats in Sweden in its length of tenure in office. Again, the entire first paragraph pretty much about winning as opposed to why they want to win. It really is an end in itself.

Fianna Fáil adheres to the great democratic principle of government of the people, by the people and for the people. As opposed to what? Government by cats? Government by hippotamus? The party’s name incorporates the words ‘The Republican Party’ in its title. Republican here stands both for the unity of the island and a commitment to the historic principles of European republican philosophy, namely liberty from pesky regulators?, equality unless you’re gay, of course and fraternity, which is a posh word for “looking after me mates”.

Fianna Fáil has always had a ‘can do’ attitude. The Party has always been positive and never defeatist in its thinking. What does this even mean?  Fianna Fáil aims to unite all in a common identity of self-confident Irish men and women in a dynamic, vibrant, prosperous nation.”

Curiously, Fine Gael doesn’t have anything like this on their site. They do talk about what Fianna Fail stands for an awful lot. Which is nice.

5 Comments

Seamus
Apr 29, 2010 at 8:32 am

Your comment about the FG site reminds me of what someone once said to me about Leinster rugby supporters – “you can always tell who they are because they are the ones who give out about Munster all the time”


 
James Lawless
Apr 29, 2010 at 4:02 pm

Jason is it my imagination or has your attitude towards FF hardened / soured in recent times? I never took you for a supporter but perhaps a friendly neutral, certainly an objective observer. However in recent weeks / months I have noticed an increasing frequency / focus on the party, generally in an unfavourable light, and I just wonder does this signify a shift in attitude and if so was there a particular catalyst?


 
Jason O
Apr 30, 2010 at 5:00 am

James, I’m not aware of a conscious move towards getting stuck into FF. If anything, I have found myself getting more impressed with some in FF, particularly Lenihan and also Ahern’s tough line with the Guards. Maybe I’m just not saying it enough, though, so you raise a fair point. Put it another way: The party I agree with the most is probably FG, yet they are consistantly disappointing, and seem to go out of their way to give me reasons to give FF another chance, primarily be seeming to think that not being FF is enough of a reason to vote FG. At the moment, I could not rule out completely the idea of voting FF. But there are certainly things FF could do to make itself far more attractive to someone like me.


 
James Lawless
May 2, 2010 at 1:32 pm

Indeed. Some of your recent commentary on policy alignments has been incisive. I find it ironic but in some ways heartening, that whilst the party is at its lowest ebb poll wise, we at least now have some clearly identifiable articulable policies, economically anyhow. This remains largely thanks to our continuing star performer, Minister Brian Lenihan. We certainly can’t be described as populist at the moment which perversely pleases me.


 
Mr. T
May 7, 2010 at 12:34 am

Government by hippotamus? Rigt now I’d give that try, even if meant coalition with the Cats


 

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