Tuesday 23 January 2018

We're not in Oz any more

Last weekend the sun was shining. The streets were filled with smiling faces. There was a carnival atmosphere in the air, and Ireland seemed like a nicer, more pleasant place in which to live. Was it all a dream? It certainly didn't take long for grim normality to reassert itself. Only a few days after Ireland said Yes to same sex marriage, Senator Averil Power, pictured, was saying No to Fianna Fail as she quit the party in a row over its lack of leadership in the referendum.

The Soldiers of Destiny, Averil insisted, are simply not fit for government right now - something most voters figured out at the last election, to be fair. That's why they kicked them out.

Not to be outdone, Fine Gael and Labour then started squabbling amongst themselves over abortion; Sinn Fein and the DUP had fisticuffs up North about welfare reform; and there was even a dispute over who should foot the bill for the clean up operation in Co Sligo after the historic visit of Prince Charles and Camilla. Are they really that messy? Who knew?

This must be how Dorothy felt in The Wizard Of Oz. For a brief while, she was in a rainbow-coloured Technicolour world, with happy munchkins dancing around, singing in celebration.

The next she was flung back unceremoniously into grey old Kansas during the Great Depression. And there's still an election to come in the next twelve months. Can't wait. Said no one ever.

Eilis O'Hanlon

Sunday Independent

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