Ross talked the talk as a TD but can't walk the walk as a minister
Having haplessly become the target for this summer's silly season, Shane Ross is now falling victim to the very treatment that he heaped on his political peers when he was a journalist. Believing that a government made up of schoolteachers, former solicitors and sons and daughters of political dynasties was a failed model, Ross ditched his pen and microphone to storm the political system and free it from cronyism and secrecy.
Now, Ross is learning the hard (and very public) way that practising realpolitik is far more difficult than simply being a political polemicist.
Several of the stances he has taken recently oscillate between nimbyism and populism and have left Ross looking like an urbane Healy-Rae. When it comes to political shrewdness, however, that may be a bit unfair on the Healy-Raes - as Ross has shown little of their political cunning.