ETHICAL BEHAVIOUR in Irish politics is a long-standing deficiency. The Sunday paper's try to unpack 2375 pages of investigation into a local national politician but even the easy-reading criticism of Michael Lowry won't derail his local machine. That's because he runs an effective constituency service and local people want to know that they can pick up the phone, call their elected TD, and get a result. Lowry got a result for Esat Digifone when he was the Minister for Communications but that result appears to be entangled in donations, currency transfers and underwritten loans. A follow-up investigation may be in the works but at the end of the day, unless Ireland implements the UN Convention against corruption, nothing will change. On top of that, the Irish political system is skewed towards electing national politicians who work more like lobbyists instead of legislators. Changing that mindset will take generations. In the meantime, Lowry's behaviour has to be judged by community standards. His professional community, the Dail, hasn't even considered censuring him. Life goes on.
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Last Week: "Sunday news after the big win", March 20, 2011.
Last Month: "GE11 from an American point of view", February 27, 2011.
Last Year: "Move Along Qikly", March 21, 2010.
Five years ago I was visiting Amish country (March 27, 2006).