This is my response to an article on irishcentral.com: http://www.irishcentral.com/story/roots/the_american_in_ireland/elected-michael-d-higgins—irelands-most-anti-american-president-132787713.html
hmmm… Where to begin? Okay, I’ll start with, “Mr. Fay, why are you inIreland?” I ask this because you seem to not like the Irish very much or at least think we are amusing but not very bright people. Certainly not as bright as a “Yank” such as yourself. And who picked that handle, “Yank”, for you? Was it yourself or some editor? While it is sometimes used with affection, it is more often pejorative. Just so you know. Like calling someone a wanker, as a matter of fact. Just like that, actually. Look it up.
The Irish did not vote for Michael D. Higgins merely because he was a “rejection of the others”. If that were true, if we felt we had no real options, you would have seen a rash of spoiled ballots or a massive campaign for someone like Dustin. Now that was an election. It has been so many years now, I forget, but didn’t Dustin actually carry a couple of areas inDublin? Forty percent of the vote – on the first, not transfers – in a field so large, is a galloping victory. You seem to be relying on polls. Polls are paid for by special interest groups, candidates, etc. I read three polls last week with three different predicted winners. Had you been interested in the opinion of the people as a whole, you should have followed the bookmakers. As to the position being “mostly ceremonial, with no influence on policy” could we not say the same thing about, um…. let’s say… President Obama? He certainly seems to be having no influence. As to President-elect Higgins being “to the left of the Irish population”, why is it you suppose he has been around for so long? You seem to confuse the Irish people’s affection for the American people as an endorsement for what the Americans, or their politicians on their behalf, do. But Mr. Fay, the Irish like lots of people. Case in point, the English. We love the English people, it is the British Government we have had issues with at various times through the years. So do not mistake our feelings toward the American people as an endorsement of their government. In case you haven’t noticed, Mr. Fay, we Irish tend to proudly lean left.
Now on to the issue of Michael Graham. Who? Seriously. The man is a right wing nut job who is nothing more than a thug and a criminal. Yes, his arrest record would cause issues in him obtaining many real jobs. Even many of those on the right find him to be an embarrassment. I am confident that few Americans would find him being called a “wanker” to be an example of turning “the air blue”. Americans had no issue with Bono calling Chris Martin a wanker. As a matter of fact, it is not really considered “blue” and is not bleeped out and there is no need to write “w****r”. Put on your big boy pants Mr. Fay and do a more credible job of playing journalist or columnist or whatever it is you do. There is no fear that Michael D. Higgins will drive jobs away fromIreland. Perhaps you need to do some research (very important for a journalist). There was a piece done on 60 Minutes recently on the topic. I am sure you can find it online. There is no fear that Michael D. will “go blue” on some trade delegation as you feel he did on Michael Graham. But even if he did, it would not matter. As a matter of fact, the Irish people could have elected Fidel Castro or Daniel Ortega and it would not matter. It is a tax issue. And when/if that changes, all or many of those jobs will go back toAmericaso fast your head will spin. Now in many countries, American corporations have set up “headquarters” that are nothing more than fancy offices with a receptionist. ButIreland(poor ignorant people that you seem to feel we are) said sure, set up your headquarters here… just one thing – you must also bring X number of jobs. Many of the corporations inIrelandas tax exiles or that will come in the future as tax exiles mean little toIrelandin the long run. Perhaps you should read the article by Antoinette Kelly published today in your own IrishCentral.com about the government initiative tempting the Diaspora home. As she quotes John Bruton in the article, “Indigenous companies provide proportionally more than three times more benefit to the Irish economy than multinational companies.”
All in all, I think the Irish made an outstanding choice. One of the first American endorsements I saw of that choice came from the Occupy movement this morning praising the Irish people for picking Michael D. Perhaps when you return to AmericaMr. Fay, you will find that it too is starting to lean a bit to the left after the unfortunate tea party many have been attending.