Secret of good leadership is in the timing…

A sharp but not entirely complementary analysis of the leadership qualities of Gerry Adams from Malachi O’Doherty on Hearts and Minds last night. The programme contains a good analysis session with Noel Doran, Martina Purdy and David McKitterick.

  • Henry94

    Gerry Adams appears to be cursed with an inverse personality cult. His opponents think he is behind all events manipulating every thing and everyone. Even to offer an republican point of view here means you are sometimes accused of being part of a propaganda machine run by Sinn Fein.

    It’s amusing enough but I wonder if is a way of helping people avoid facing up to the realities of what led us to where we are. After all if it was just the work of an evil genius then there was nothing really wrong with British policy for the past 30 years and the Orange state before that.

    So best imply that Gerry Adams by not going with the stickies was responsible for everything.

    Of course the evil genius wins no matter what happens. A bank gets robbed and it is a plot to buy power in Ireland with stolen loot. The subsequent political fallout leads to decommissioning and the evil genius really only gave the lads enough rope to hang themselves.

    The beauty of conspiracy theory is that you can have your cake and eat it too.

    If you ask me Malachi O’Doherty needs to stop obsessing and think more.

  • spirit-level

    “Secret of good leadership is in the timing, espcially when to use the loo!
    I’m not a politician, but have experience of psychiatric nursing.Suppose Gerry Adams and Ian Paisley were my patients under section.After close monitoring I’d say that Gerry Adams is responding well to treatment.In the beginning when we left a potty in his room, he’d throw it out the window.Lately there has been some progress, and he no longer throws the potty out of the room.In fact his poo-poos are coming on , and we may change his classification to voluntary patient.Regrettably Ian Paisley’s condition continues to worsen, and he has to be straight-jacketed nightly for his own safety and protection. The only choice my staff are instructed to make is which buttock to use for the depixol injection. Its important to vary betwen the left and right, as it can be unsettling on the patient otherwise. We have quite a hoot in the staff-room, at the pun on “turning the other cheek.”

  • Shore Road Resident

    I wouldn’t agree that Gerry Adams was entirely responsible for started the Troubles There still isn’t much doubt that he played a huge role in causing the problems he’s so quick to take credit for fixing.

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  • Kenton, Las Cruces, New Mexico

    I have no idea what the hell you guys are talking about, but you sound so sophisticated…

    …unlike your chaps on the other side of the pond…


  • spirit-level

    It’s just a poker game in another form, just so happens to involve history, geography,The Churches, a kingdom, a republic and lots more.
    Best to go clubbing or something . Cheers!

  • Keith M

    I have to say that I liked Malachi O’Doherty’s piece, even if I didn’t agree with all of it. If Adams is the cunning leader that people try to make out, then he should know what his next step is. He should resign as leader of SF. If the party is to put its paramilitary background behind it, those that were leaders of the IRA need to take a less prominent role. SF is already the biggest nationalist party in Northern Ireland and that’s unlikely to change for the forseeable future.

    However if the party is to make serious progress in this country (say overtake Labour) then it needs a younger person that does not have blood on his/her hands and is preferably from the Republic.

    Adams can then concentrate on his nice little earner of writing books and maybe even the US lecture circuit. I mean if they pay good money for Albert Reynolds, then anyone can do it!

  • spirit-level

    Keith M
    100% agreed. Adams’ legacy is he got the IRA to disarm. Now stand aside. M Mcguiness too, he could leave with a note on his office door:
    ” Gone fishing”.
    The next leader may be an irishman from abroad returning, not someone from the republic. That’s poss too.

  • reggy

    So Paisley & Robinson should resign because of their links to ulster resistance.

    Ans Empey should resign because of the paramilitary connections to Vanguard.

  • Shore Road Resident


    Next question.

  • slug

    I think Adams and Paisley resigning will improve matters but it should not happen yet. Adams has been very good at keeping the republican movement united – we don’t want a split. If he handed over tomorrow to Mary Loo McDonald it might be good for the votes but it could cause a split in the movement and possibly the IRA would not feel as inspired by a new leader. Adams is needed to keep republicans confident as we go into the new era. Paisley serves a different role on the unionist side but it is similar in so far as he can quell fears – if he endorese a deal then the unionist people will not accuse him quickly of sell-out. (Sell out seems a bit unlikely these days, tho!).

  • slug

    If Adams were to resign tomorrow, the tradition of physical force republicanism would not know who to be led by; he is essential for the stability of things for the time being. As the republican movememt move forward and we all put the past behind us, Adams is reassurance for those on the republican side who fear change.

  • Tochais Síoraí

    Serious respect for spirit-level and his depixol.

    If you want post of the year, you gotta beat that.

  • spirit-level

    actually slug you’re right, not for the time being. Its essential he stays for the reasons you’ve given.
    Thanks Tochias
    Very kind of you..
    Laughter best medicine.

  • Headmelter


    Paisley has chosen to be nursed in seclusion for too long. I think there needs to be a full multi-governmental review of his care plan.
    His current medication has been completely inneffective and he has relapsed with severe florid symptoms. This needs treated aggressively, I would recommend a course of accuphase supplemented by some IM lorazepam. We called this the ‘twin track’ approach. This treatment aims to treat the psychosis while reducing agitation to various stressors in the immediate environment.

    Once his fragile mental state has been stabilised I feel he needs to be commenced on a titrating dose of clozapine aiming for maximum BNF limits. I feel this is justified given the length of time he has remained treatment resistant. It should also minimise any extra paramital side effects previously experienced such as walking out of talks and pacing up and down traditional routes, usually becoming more agitated when a request to do so has been refused even when there has been a perfectly good rationale provided.

    When the medication has been increased and a therapeutic level has been realised a desensitisation programme should be constructed, aiming to gradually introduce the idea of talking to and associating with the shinners, who are after all the main protaganists which exacerbate his psychosis.

    This could then be followed by a behaviour modification programme where he could gain just as many ‘concessions’ as the shinners for participating and taking responsibility for his own actions. This would probably not proceed without incident and it is quite likely he may suffer the occassional relapse. The severity of the relapses could be minimised by the governments maintaining solid guidelines, using the GFA as their template.

    G.A on the other hand should continue to improve and if the risk assessments are accurate and he has relinquished everything that could be used as weapons then the likelihood of any acts of self harm are dramatically reduced. This coupled with the fact he appears to be engaging well with both governments and attempting to improve his inter personal relationships with various other groups would certainly suggest he may well be successful at a tribunal following a period of trial ‘leave’.

  • brighid mcbride

    Why should Adams resign? He’s doing a bang-up job leading the RM into the political future. Why are you still grousing about it? Oh, right! You’re mad because Adams is leading the RM into the political future. Here’s the thing: Adams has been elected to represent a constituency. He should do his job and represent them, shouldn’t he? Why of course. It’s patently obvious that some posters here live in an alternate universe where THEY decide who West Belfast should elect. And, hasn’t that ALWAYS been your problem?

  • spirit-level

    I concur with your assessment sir. A most excellent care package
    brighid mcbribe
    do you think GAdams will move on policing and criminality?