Today is voting day in the EU Treaty Referendum.  For the last month or so we have been deafened by conflicting voices telling us what they think we should do.  I am not going to rehash any of the debates (although most of them descended into shouting matches) but there is one thing that has irked me in a big way from the beginning of this campaign.  And oddly enough it was exactly the same thing that irked me the last time we voted (the General Election 2011) and that thing is ENDA KENNY.

I have nothing against the man personally.  I do think he is a good person with his heart in the right place.  But he is a weak leader – something I feared over a year ago when my vote, along with an avalanche of others, propelled him and his party into government with Labour.

After 4 years of brutal recession Ireland continues to struggle economically.  That sentence doesn’t however convey the very real suffering of many people in this country.  A fact that was brought into sharp focus this week with an excellent, if very depressing programme on RTE 1 called Life and Debt (you can watch it back on the RTE Player here).  This programme portrayed the very real and desperate nightmare many people are caught in right now.  The programme made me very angry, particularly as it was broadcast in a week when once again Ireland paid €2.25bn to bondholders.  According to tweeter @sebthegooner that equates to €500 for every man, woman and child in this country.  That would amount to €2,000 from this house alone.  We could buy our daughter the wardrobes she badly needs for her bedroom…. but for those who were featured on ‘Life and Debt’ this might buy a bit of peace of mind for a couple of weeks.

If we ever needed strong leadership we need it now, which brings me neatly back to our Enda.  Once again he refused to go into TV3 or any other studio to debate the issues around the EU Treaty.  Bear in mind we pay this man €200,000 a year to lead the country.  The arrogance is breathtaking.

But it is more serious that just giving a two fingers to his electorate, Enda Kenny’s refusal to debate live on air, his obvious fear of conflict or being seen to lose clearly makes him unsuitable for the high office he holds.  This is the man on whom we depend to negotiate our case in Europe.  I despair.  I really do.  The clip above from last nights Channel 4 News is enough to make one cry!

Here is the blog post I wrote over a year ago just prior to the General Election… the gladioli have come home to roost… or something!

Where’s my voting card…… It’s going to be NO.

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Writing and Talking.... on the radio, on the telly and in the papers. Debut book out in Spring 2022


  1. I'm feeling your pain B. Well said. Enda is a PR puppet. His main interest is getting his photo taken and published. His main goal is not to make any PR gaffs, so best thing to do is, hide. Hardly the stuff of a leader. And yes, there is no difference between this government and the last. There is no leadership and SF are filling the political vacuum, with a huge leap in support. I am sorry you feel betrayed by the people you voted for, you believed they would do something different. I did not. Leopards do not change their spots. The real frustration comes from the fact that there is no change. If the treaty is passed today, then the government you elect next time will have even less power. More central rule by even more faceless civil servants in Europe. Now you have made me angry too. I try not to think about politics too much, as it makes me so mad. You just have to get on with your own life at a micro level. Government is just another hindrance to success. Success being survival for many people. The people at the bottom of the great property scheme lose everything and have their lives ruined, whilst the irresponsible, greedy and foolish bond holders sail off into the sunset with each and every citizen in Ireland at a financial loss for countless years to come.

  2. Barbara I just hope for Ireland's sake and the sake of all it's generations present and future, that enough people care as much as you and feel as you do.

    Kenny may be a nice man, possibly a good local politician but he is a weak leader and surrounded by many like him.

    Arrogance from Kenny has meant this referendum goes ahead, when so many other European participants are holding back from decision on the treaty and even Merkel can't get support for it.

    Life and Debt showed the truth for many, sadly for some in the same predicament it's also been Life and Death.

    Irish politicians are collectively like the Emperor without clothes, pretending.I hope enough people now see it and register a No vote even if just to protest against the situation.

    Ireland if it's ever to recover deserves better.

  3. Barbara, You have described exactly how I feel. I so nearly voted No but in the end succumbed to the Yes. I feel in my bones that the vested interests want a Yes vote to keep the gravy train of inflated salaries and perks going for those in public office, banks, etc. The little people will continue to battle with real austerity which these individuals can not even begin to understand.

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