Healy-Rae: “…it should make decent Irish people – however innocent – cringe with refracted embarrassment.”

There’s a nicely understated piece of writing in the Irish Times this morning, by displaced northerner Donald Clark, who probably thinks about these things more than many of his neighbours.

Clark whimsically probes some of the possible reasons that may be making northerners of all stripes think twice about what we once un-self consciously called the Free State.

It starts and ends with the Healy-Raes’ use of Oireachtas resources (ie, not less than €2,600 of phone calls) to ‘help Michael, scion of the great cap dynasty, win some reality TV jamboree entitled Celebrities Go Wild. State representatives of the Bongo Bongo Islands rarely find themselves caught up in such pathetic scandals’.

And he concludes:

There are, in these times of economic meltdown, more important things to worry about than the smug noises being emitted by Rosemary and Edwin McCausland at their local golf club. But it’s hard not to care a little that so many Ulster Protestants will be eating such great helpings of I-Told-You-So pie. The antics of Healy-Rae’s supporters will only add relish to their dish.

But go and read it all

Mick is founding editor of Slugger. He has written papers on the impacts of the Internet on politics and the wider media and is a regular guest and speaking events across Ireland, the UK and Europe. Twitter: @MickFealty