Saturday 10 December 2016

James Downey: Fianna Fail must learn to put country before party

Published 16/10/2010 | 05:00

DAVID McCullagh's biography of John A Costello was launched by Liam Cosgrave in the Mansion House on Wednesday evening before a large and enthusiastic audience. Cosgrave, still spry at the age of 90, gave them value for their money.

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He spoke for more than half an hour, and apologised gracefully for the length of the speech. It occurred to me that in Costello's time, to say nothing of earlier times, no politician or retired politician would have thought anything of speaking for half an hour. It occurred to me, too, that Fine Gael Taoisigh, including himself and Costello, tend to look better, more competent and more patriotic, in retrospect than in office.

His command of the facts and the chronology was perfect, and he placed the book's subject neatly in the historical context.

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