Saturday 19 August 2017

Fine tale and Garret the Good

Niamh Sammon's three-part documentary series, Fine Gael: A Family at War (RTE1), began this week and right at the end of the engrossing first episode Garret FitzGerald mused that the party he had led for a decade was now "somewhat different". That's one way of putting it. Dead as a dodo would be another. Or, as narrator Miriam Kelly phrased it at the outset: "It's hard

Niamh Sammon's three-part documentary series, Fine Gael: A Family at War (RTE1), began this week and right at the end of the engrossing first episode Garret FitzGerald mused that the party he had led for a decade was now "somewhat different". That's one way of putting it. Dead as a dodo would be another. Or, as narrator Miriam Kelly phrased it at the outset: "It's hard to believe today that there was a time, just 20 years ago, when Fine Gael seemed an unstoppable political force."

Well, hardly unstoppable, but certainly in the early 1980s it looked as if the old political order, whereby Fianna Fail assumed it had a God-given right to rule the hearts and minds of an unquestioning electorate, was being undermined and that a revitalised Fine Gael might finally become the force it had always promised to be.

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