The old Irish vice of petty begrudgery ripples along - always there to console the holier than thou in full flight. It was at its most shrill when the hoary chestnut of 'mercs, perks, and pay' for our politicos got its ritual outing.
Opposition TDs, happy to leave well enough alone when it comes to their own take-home package, were in paroxysms of self-righteousness. This time round, the lightening rod for collective umbrage was the rather unfortunately titled 'super junior' ministers. Pay wise, they are getting too generous a whack, it seems.
And a voluntary pay cut by the Taoiseach and the Cabinet wasn't enough. Some residual monies from times past had pushed things above a mythical high water mark. The begrudgers were in full voice. At times, it looked like a variant of sackcloth and ashes was required to bring over-indulged 'fat cats' to heel.
The hardy annual of ministerial cars and drivers got its outing too. Lofty high mindedness was ascending to new levels. It was as if a Government minister gaddying about in a clapped-out banger would be the ultimate prize for the taxpayer?
There was much huffing and puffing about Foreign Affairs Minister Simon Coveney. Yet it makes sense, on the grounds of security, for him to have a State car, plus a Garda driver, during regular cross-Border trips to Northern Ireland. It is more efficient, and possibly less costly, than other ad-hoc arrangements.
As the penny wise, pound foolish, populism hogged the headlines, we should not forget too much of our all too recent politics was tainted with corruption. A so-called brown-envelope culture led to the establishment of sundry tribunals and other probes. The ultimate lesson is that those in power need to be watched, and watched closely.
The system now has more checks and balances; rezoning land for house building is no longer a gravy train for the corrupt and dishonest. But we have to be on our guard. The story of those in high office sometimes feathering their own nest is as old as time itself. We have seen across the world a frailty in human nature, when offered bribes, backhanders and bungs.
Even the squeaky clean image of Canadian Premier Justin Trudeau took a battering these past few days. He is in a political storm over allegations family members benefited from the awarding of a government contract.
Meanwhile, there are 17 countries regarded as more honest than Ireland in the world.
Of course, paying our politicians well is no guarantee that some may still not try to enrich themselves, especially when around the centres of power. But all things being equal - if they are competitively remunerated, the temptation to stray from the straight and narrow should be less.
However, in return for making our politics a well-paid profession, we should expect squeaky clean standards from those holding public office. Anybody proven to be underhand should be brought to book, and their political career ended.
All the while, the Government battles its faltering start on many fronts. The key problem is no gelling together of the three parties. This was to be expected during the getting-to-know-you phase. In any case the jitters of recent days will have little consequence in the longer term. Real-time challenges will begin in the autumn.
But begrudgery of another kind could be undermining a unity of purpose under Micheál Martin's leadership. Leo Varadkar has been out of the picture too often as the new Taoiseach battled to hold the line. Is it that he begrudges the Fianna Fáil leader his time in the limelight while holding down his old job?
As far as the Greens are concerned, they look like a party adrift. The gap is growing between left of centre quasi-socialists, and social democrats, who have climate change as their passion. Is Catherine Martin so desirous of the crown still held by Eamon Ryan that she silently enjoys the discomfort piled upon him, as this divide grows?
Begrudging his success in fending off her challenge to his leadership is understandable. But she should be more strident on the question of party unity. The begrudger and the begrudged often pay dearly - as the corroding consequences of jealousy ritualistically claims its victims.