Wednesday 21 February 2018

O'Leary fosters victim myth in ode to Heaney

The commentator works the term 'Stalinist' hard, writes John-Paul McCarthy

OLIVIA O'Leary paid elaborate tribute to Seamus Heaney in last Saturday's Irish Times, depicting him as a kind of private father-confessor for the type of reporter who saw little or no moral difference between the Provisional IRA and the British government.

Gleefully invoking Heaney's ambivalence about the H-Block Blanketmen, she offered belated rhetorical solidarity with those "decent, peaceful nationalist voters" who elected H-Block candidates pledged to destroy the Republic that paid her wages.

There's an old joke amongst philosophers that says liberalism is best defined as the inability to take one's own side in an argument.

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