Looking ahead – Three Quotes to ponder.

It’s Saturday as I write this, listening to the RoI GE11 results come in, as well as the analysis we are already hearing predictions for the next election, will it be a revived FF, or FG going for a majority, Labour becoming the major party,or even SF making the it to the top table in some form.  In light of this speculation  may I be so bold to quote three statesmen, two Brit’s and a Yank to boot.

Firstly, Sir Winston Churchill (its hard to escape his quotes)

“This is not the end, nor the beginning of the end, but merely the end of the beginning”

A wartime context originally, I believe it could also be easily applied to the stage we have now reached in the political upheavals  in the Republic.  Some might think getting rid of the corrupt government of FF will be that corner finally turned, others  could think that a clean sheet now exist and things will gradually return to normal, while those on the left might think, let FG do the dirty work and then we can come to the rescue next time.  The reality might be very different because of the second quote-

Harold McMillan “events dear boy, events!”

Ireland has had a rather interesting few years shall we say, with few, if any, guessing the extent of the meltdown.  As I have said there is much more to come that is basically being ignored at present, that is at least until FG get a look at the books for starters.  However just as the Middle East unrest came out of the blue, other events might also destabilise things, both at home and abroad, the roller coaster is not finished yet.  Of course the events can fall into two groups, which bring me to my third quote, from the Yank.

Donald Rumsfeld “…there are Known Unknowns…but there are also Unknown Unknowns.”

We all know that the banking crisis is far from over, but there are pretty good estimates out there of the extent of the problem, its a know unknown so to speak, as is the public deficit, emigration problem etc.  in these cases there are a range of scenarios available, although many of these are ugly to say the least, ranging form serious to catastrophic.  Which finally leaves the unknown unknowns, but we don’t know about them to speculate, therefore any speculation as to future election is premature to say the least, so stick to the number crunching of this result, but if you want to avoid egg on your face dont speculate part next week!

  • Rory Carr

    Very nice, Drumlin’s Rock, but it does seem an awfully long-winded way of saying, “My crystal ball is occluded. The future is uncertain.”

  • Drumlins Rock

    Yup, but they are incline to whinge on here if you start a thread with less than three paragraphs lol

  • Cynic2

    I admire verbosity

  • qwerty12345

    Brevity is best: Adams tops poll

  • lover not a fighter

    I am going to be very interested to see what Sinn Féin strategy is going to be from here. It will be even more interesting if they can become the leader of the opposition (with the help of some independents)

  • The Word

    “what Sinn Féin strategy is going to be from here. ”

    They’ll take advice, I’m sure, from the usual sources. But here’s to Gerry Adams, Mister 10 per cent is back. It should be good craic.

  • Cynic2

    The Word

    Mr 9%!!! But fair enough at the moment they are up on FF

  • Zig70

    Don’t want to encourage the ‘we’re gonna pop out more sprogs than you brigade’ but just thinking that even though Gerry’s strategy of creating a focus north and south for a UI seems the obvious path, will this now mean that if Sinn Fein aren’t the largest party in the South, then for that party it will be political suicide to create a UI. I can’t be *rsed to do the math, but what size do SF need to be in the South to ensure they are the largest party on the Ireland and give Gerry the big seat in the Dail if that fated day arrived. I guess you’d have to assume that the MLA’s translate into TD’s and the nationalist vote in the north was just in the majority.
    Also liked the colour the green’s got on rte’s election banner, turquoise? I thought that would suit FF more and at least give the greens a shade of green.

  • Can I just say, without disrespect for Sinn Fein’s achievement in more than doubling its No. of TDs, that the number of posts and comments about Sinn Fein – as far as the Irish election is concerned – on slugger is disproportionately too great for that party’s importance to ROI politics.

    The most important aspect of this election is what they new Government will bring to Ireland. The amount of comments and posts by bloggers on that topic on Slugger has been disproportionately too small for its importance for ROI politics.

  • Harry Flashman

    Ah the Rumsfeld quote, remember when all the sneering chatterati laughed at him for that? How we all chuckled at another example of the idiocy surrounding the Bush presidency, funny how prescient it turned out to be, a lot like the Bush presidency itself oddly enough. In years to come the sheer spittle flecked, hysterical hatred that was hurled at Bush will be a mystery to people of a more rational age.

    Anyway to the point in question, “events dear boy, events” is the money quote here, Fianna Fail is not down and out. As I said in an earlier post, to paraphrase Conor Cruise O’Brien (another genius much despised by the chattering classes) until you see them buried at the crossroads at midnight with a stake through their heart do not believe in reports of the death of Fianna Fail.

    There is a political cycle, the British Labour Party, dead as a doornail in 1983, came to power in a landslide in 1997, the Tory party then licked its wounds and came back in 2010. The Canadian Tories returned also from annihilation to form a government again, as did the US Republican whom many breathless commentators dismissed as finished after Obama’s marginal victory in 2008.

    Fine Gael will stuff up, governments always do, Fianna Fail will be the majority party in an Irish coalition government on or around 2020. If we’re getting Churchillian we can perhaps say it is their Dunkirk moment, but remember how that turned out.

  • abucs

    I didn’t expect so many FF voters go over to FG.

    Also the Independent Newspaper looks a little stupid regarding the printing of predictions Gery Adams could possibly miss out altogether.

  • Henry94


    The problem with the Sunday Independent is that you can’t believe what they print as news. John Drennan has indeed made a fool of himself. But that’s a risk the organ-grinder was willing to take.