It is often said of Brian Cowen that he calls a spade a spade. This is certainly not true in relation to his speech at the Humbert Summer School. Here he called a spade a shovel. Black is white.
This is particularly true in relation to his charge of bias against the media.
He states the following: "Equally clear from this publicly available research is the softness of the coverage of Fine Gael in general and their leader in particular." This is the typical bogus FF persecution complex designed by the leadership to motivate the grassroots on the basis that" everyone is against us." Of course it is a great motivating ploy. The reality is certainly much different. FF received strong support from the Sunday Independent. The Late Late Show on the Friday night prior to the election featured two pro FF guests John Waters and Eoghan Harris and one anti FF guest namely Eamon Dunphy. Perhaps Brian would prefer that all three were pro FF. I have no doubt that this debate was the clincher.
He criticizes FG-Labour pre-election pacts. Again he ignores the reality . In 1973 FG and Labour had a pre election pact. They won the General Election. In the 1977 General Election Labour suffered much less than FG. The give away FF Manifesto-which wrecked the economy - saw to that. The Mullingar Accord did not result in large Labour seat losses. FG recovered most of the seats it had lost to Independents and PDs in 2002.
Labour lost several potential seats because of organisational difficulties. The Mullingar Accord did not stymy the election of new Labour TDs such as Joanna Tuffy and Sean Sherlock.
When Labour entered coalition with FF it alienated the strong anti- FF support that it received.
Labour's biggest blunder was to agree a Tax Amnesty with FF. This cost it dearly and has never been forgotten by some elements of the electorate.
He speaks about FG populism. Perhaps he should take a look at his own party. In the Mid West FF TDs and councillors have "allied" themselves with the local populace against their own Party.
There is another subliminal message in his speech also. FF is the architect of the Celtic Tiger and is not responsible for any economic difficulties that may arise. Economic cycles are responsible for these. Economic cycles -as far as Brian is concerned- are not responsible for the booms. The sole responsibility for these rests with FF.
A more populist candidate for the FF leadership may yet cost Brian the elusive prize.