A cabinet that includes Cowen, de Valera, Hanafin, Lenihan and Andrews whose forefathers were the very embodiment of Fianna Fáil from its foundation.
Those founding fathers and many, many others throughout the country saw the new party as the institution to give the young state leadership of the highest integrity – a leadership based on their humble backgrounds of toil and humility. Leadership born of service, leadership without fanfare.
Those people saw Fianna Fáil and the very institutions of the state in the one eye-line. You could not bat for one while undermining the other.
In Laois-Offaly, Brian Cowen’s grandfather, Christy Cowen, and my grandfather, John Moloney, were at the very heart of the fledgling party, holding official positions from the beginning. Men of little education and poor means, could they conceive that power and arrogance would be the lot of their descendants who would sit and give security to one that smirked with disdain from the position of cabinet minister at the highest institutions of state.
If they could have foreseen for a moment that one day their party would show such disrespect for the institutions of the state and for the people of the nation, I believe they would have killed it at birth.
However, there is little doubt that those who control Fianna Fáil now will leave no stone turned until they have the party in the same condition as they have the country – bankrupt.