Paul Healy’s Week

Friday

 

I only saw some of RTE’s very worthy version of the UK’s long established Comic Relief. It seems some skit involving Niall Horan, Ray D’Arcy and Dustin the Turkey has infuriated his fans in America (Horan’s fans, not D’Arcy’s). The unimpressed fans took to Twitter to vent their fury, presumably at the turkey. (I don’t know the details, and intend to keep it that way).

I can’t imagine how worked up the Americans would be if they saw Marty Morrissey, Des Cahill and all two Johnnies prancing about as Westlife…er…lookalikes.

For those of us who did see it, the horror will live on…

 

Saturday

 

I found Saturday less than inspiring, but still, best of luck to our new Government…

Maybe it was that vast Convention Centre (where TDs gathered) which totally drained what was undoubtedly an historic day of much of the atmosphere one normally associates with milestone such as this.

After our son agreed to switch the TV from ‘The Amazing World of Gumball’ (it’s a cartoon) we joined the Amazing World of Leo and Micheál. In studio, the ever-unflappable Bryan Dobson was trying to keep the analysis going with serious-faced guests, but it wasn’t easy, as nothing had really happened yet.

Then, a breakthrough, as back in the Convention Centre, the TDs were being asked to vote. At this point I must express the hope that the RTE camera man or woman receives a bonus payment, because it was some task to try and get each TD on camera as their name was called out.

Every time a name was called, there was a pause as the camera tried to find them in a venue which the commentators kept reminding us was absolutely ‘vast’.

Truth be told, the TDs looked lost in the er… ‘huge’ Convention Centre. One by one they stood and declared their support or non-support for the man who would be Taoiseach.

Eventually, Micheál Martin was declared to be our new Taoiseach, whereupon he permitted himself a deserved semi-smile of satisfaction. It had been a long journey.

Outgoing Taoiseach Leo Varadkar was gracious in his comments, helpfully declaring that the Civil War fallout is over, both on the outside and in the chamber, not that we were in the Dáil chamber.

Green Party leader Eamon Ryan was quite gushing in his praise of our new leader. It was miraculous, after various spats over the years, how Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael were suddenly such committed partners!

Anyways, we’ll certainly wish the new government well. The caretaker government did a good job in handling the extraordinary (and ongoing) Covid-19 crisis; we need this intriguing new Coalition partnership to provide inspired leadership in the months and years ahead.

 

Sunday

 

Shortest honeymoon since Hollywood great Mickey Rooney was in his prime…

The new Taoiseach unveiled his Cabinet on Saturday night…and all hell broke loose on the western front.

No senior minister for the West, or, for that matter, from Limerick to Donegal! It’s all over the radio stations and social media today. It seemed a careless omission on the part of Micheál. Most sympathy was reserved for FF deputy leader Dara Calleary, whose inclusion in Cabinet had been seen as a safe bet.

Sympathy for the likeable Dara aside, where does it leave the West? Not a good call!

Monday/Tuesday

 

Normally when a new government takes office, we get lovely hot weather for a week or so, but it’s been mostly cold and wet since Team FF/FG/Greens took over. Serves them right for ignoring the West!

And, speaking of politics, I’m delighted to see the launch of a new party, the Healy-Rae party. In his solemn speech on Saturday, Danny Healy-Rae – straight-faced, believe it or not – broke the news that he could not support the nomination of Micheál Martin for Taoiseach (presumably because the Cork man was not bearing gifts for Kerry).

I can reveal that Michael Healy-Rae is chairperson and secretary of the Healy-Rae party, while Danny Healy-Rae is treasurer and PRO. They are an independent party in every sense, but will consider going into Coalition with the Mattie McGrath party.