Friday, December 30, 2005

Top 6 Friday Irish People of 2005

6. People keep celebrating the likes of J.P. McManus and other tax exiles for what they do for Ireland yet still ridicule a man that has done far more the any of them and pays his taxes.That man is Michael O’Leary. He reckons the delights of Westmeath outweigh the advantages of tax exile. 5. Here at the dosing times we appreciate someone who stands up for his principles. While CK will probably disagree with me I think Michael McDowell deserves a place on his list. He stood up to the IRA and against many other groups. While his cafĂ© bars thing were brought down by Fianna Fail back benchers. He has stood firm on many issues and personally a politician standing up for his principles and not just for whatever is popular is a welcome change. 4. One journalist said that this guy did more damage to the government in 5 TV shows then the position had done in 7 years and It is true. Eddie Hobbs revitalised Fine Gael. With his accent, telling people what their parents had always told them and his use of figures he mobilised more people into questioning government more then they had in years. 3. Another of the few politicians I have immense respect for is Joe Higgins of the socialist party. While I disagree with much of his policies I admire his determination and conviction. He championing of the Gama Workers cause really should that the little guy still has the ability to get justice in this country. Also his line in the Dail during the Willie O’ Dea gun picture. About whether the Taniste had asked security to take his gun at the door. Priceless. 2. The Republics biggest news story of the year was The Rossport Five. Not only is this amazing because the media picked up a story about people who live in Rossport and not Malahide. But that these men did not back down. They went to prison on a matter of principle. They felt they were defending their friends and families. And they fought a massive corporation to protect them. With recent surveys hinting they may be right after all. People power shines on. 1. They came second in my world list so they are an obvious best in Ireland 2005. To live in an area ruled by the treat of violence and to stand up in an area where standing up is not acceptable is something truly amazing. The McCartney Sisters and Bridgeen Hagans showed true bravery. After the Murder of their brother Robert instead of staying quiet as would be expect they stood up to the terrorists. With a natural talent for PR they stood up for everyone without a voice. They did something that the British Government, Irish Government, SDLP and Kevin Myres could never do. They turned traditional IRA supporters against them and they touch Irish America tainting the image that Sinn Fein have worked so hard to build. This lead to a situation which forced the IRA to give up their weapons something that I don’t think would have happened without them. I cannot say enough about these ladies they are truly great. The story of their struggle for justice is inspiring. The fact that they were forced to leave their homes really makes their story a Shakespearian tragedy a story I hope one day is told so that it can inspire generations to stand up to injustice. They have changed Ireland for decades if not forever.

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