Monday, May 25, 2009

How do you map Declan Ganley’s political DNA?

The double helix of DNA defines our characteristics, and links us back to a common ancestor. For all its faults there is much that is honourable in the Irish political DNA. Ireland was the only one of the new republics founded after 1919 that was still a democracy in 1939. The DNA of all the major Irish political parties can be found in the GPO in 1916 and a commitment to an egalitarian and democratic form of organisation of society.

One would be at a loss to map Ganley in this process, but it is not impossible.

What are Ganley’s characteristics?

Swaggering arrogance

An ever so ‘umble beginning

Non descript Thames valley accent

Contempt for the politics of the mere paddies – they are all a cartel evidently

Great Wealth

We can map this to a phenomenon in Irish modern history.

It is the auxiliary division of the Royal Irish Constabulary, who arrived in Ireland from late 1920 onwards to put manners on the mere Irish. The egregious behaviour has often obscured an analysis of who these people were.

They were ex British army officers who had been through the First War, and in most cases had risen from the ranks ( ever so ‘umble beginnings)

They were paid five pounds a day all found – an unheard of sum ( Great wealth)

Some would have served beyond 1918 into the Russian intervention ( one had helped to found the Lithuanian army) The murky east European links remain interesting !

So the Ganley type has a long if not an honourable pedigree in Irish political culture

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