Shouting match in the Dáil - Contrived idiocy

Advancing Dáil — or dare it be said, Seanad — reform is one of those noble, unquestionable objectives even if nobody really knows where that journey might end.

However, Wednesday’s schoolboy excitements in the chamber underline again that it is essential and urgent.

The house was suspended after a gobdaws’ shouting match between the Healy-Rae brothers and Fianna Fáil’s Marc MacSharry over speaking privileges.

The Healy-Raes, who have built unlikely political careers by hiding their political acumen under a well-fitting cloak of gombeenism, used our national parliament to ask questions about farm payments — especially Kerry farm payments.

Deputy MacSharry, hardly a snowflake, felt they were “again” hogging speaking time. A high-decibel bunfight ensured.

Meaningful Dáil business, if that’s what the Healy-Raes were at, was suspended.

One of the great weaknesses of our political system is the understandable reluctance of so many worthwhile people to participate. In the face of this contrived idiocy is it any wonder?

Surely the pantomime season is over.


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