I was sitting down tonight with a former secret policeman, savouring a quiet pint and enjoying his stories of beating confessions from suspects when he made an observation that, I have to confess, I’d overlooked.
This Vincent Browne thing, he remarked.
The way his show was axed.
Indeed, I interjected. I love the Vincent Browne show.
And it’s gone now, he completed for me.
‘Tis, I agreed. That’s the end of Vincent grilling politicians on the radio.
And re-enactments of Tribunals, he added. Why?
I don’t know, I replied, contritely. Tell me.
(Former secret policemen tend to have that effect on you).
Simple. He asked too many hard questions.
Which was the exact precise fuck-you moment when I realised that Irish democracy is well and truly screwed.
Do you remember the iconic incident when Vincent confronted our crooked-as-fuck Prime Minister at a press conference in the run-up to the last election, and asked him about his crooked-as-fuck contributions from big business? And wouldn’t be shut up by the arrogant-as-fuck PR guy, PJ Mara? Do you remember how he publicly reminded Mara that the crook Haughey had quelled such questions in the past but it wouldn’t happen a second time?
Now the penny drops!
In the same way. In the very same way that Bertie decided to rehabilitate the crook, Beverley Flynn, and suddenly – by magic – our national broadcasting company agreed to halve Beverley’s outstanding legal bills, it appears that the same broadcaster decided to get rid of the turbulent Browne who had the temerity to question Bertie’s honesty.
Magic or coincidence? You decide!
One way or the other, Irish democracy is now a thing of the past.
Goodnight and God bless. Hope y’all enjoy the chicken!