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 Mary Robinson For President ! Again ?

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PostSubject: Mary Robinson For President ! Again ?   Fri Dec 05, 2008 2:06 am

Listened to a radio interview today with someone writing a book about Mary Robinson.

She has apparently said that she made a mistake quitting after one term.

Would she, and should she go again, I wonder, and would we have her back?

Personally, I think she would be a vast improvement on the present incumbent.
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PostSubject: Re: Mary Robinson For President ! Again ?   Fri Dec 05, 2008 4:31 am

I would not vote for her.

The incumbent should have been ousted or elected, she has no mandate for this term.

Can we get the legislation on that changed btw.
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PostSubject: Re: Mary Robinson For President ! Again ?   Fri Dec 05, 2008 4:36 am

EvotingMachine0197 wrote:
I would not vote for her.

The incumbent should have been ousted or elected, she has no mandate for this term.

Can we get the legislation on that changed btw.

Is that both of them you wouldnt vote for EVM ?

Michael D wuz robbed.
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PostSubject: Re: Mary Robinson For President ! Again ?   Fri Dec 05, 2008 12:51 pm

cactus flower wrote:
Personally, I think she would be a vast improvement on the present incumbent.
What is wrong with Mary McAleese?
The president's job is to do nothing and give the odd vague speech. She seems to be good at these things.
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PostSubject: Re: Mary Robinson For President ! Again ?   Fri Dec 05, 2008 12:52 pm

cactus flower wrote:
Michael D wuz robbed.
He was. I blame Pat Rabbitte.
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PostSubject: Re: Mary Robinson For President ! Again ?   Fri Dec 05, 2008 1:12 pm

I would like to see Michael D or Colm Toibin in there. It's time to bring the Arts into the Aras. Bertie can wait another 7-14 years.
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PostSubject: Re: Mary Robinson For President ! Again ?   Fri Dec 05, 2008 1:49 pm

eoinmn wrote:
cactus flower wrote:
Michael D wuz robbed.
He was. I blame Pat Rabbitte.

I do too. I blame Pat Rabitte for a lot, but that was truly disgraceful.
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PostSubject: Re: Mary Robinson For President ! Again ?   Fri Dec 05, 2008 1:58 pm

She would be better than the puppet incumbant I suppose but why not give it to someone else. lets ban people from second terms. Also 7 years is way way too long.
Ideally, lets abolish the presidency, or at least the way it is in its present form.
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PostSubject: Re: Mary Robinson For President ! Again ?   Fri Dec 05, 2008 2:00 pm

Ah no, I don't think we should abolish the presidency. It is important that we have an international representative who is not political, in my opinion.

President, whilst weak, does of course also have some exercisable powers. Mary Robinson's refusal to dissolve the Dáil at the request of Albert Reynolds being an example.
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PostSubject: Re: Mary Robinson For President ! Again ?   Fri Dec 05, 2008 2:41 pm

johnfás wrote:
Ah no, I don't think we should abolish the presidency. It is important that we have an international representative who is not political, in my opinion.

President, whilst weak, does of course also have some exercisable powers. Mary Robinson's refusal to dissolve the Dáil at the request of Albert Reynolds being an example.

Well considering myself a republican, in the true sense, I dont feel we need a salaried representative, but you have a point about someone being apolitical which actually is probably the only good reason for a monarch (and thats something which I am opposed to on a deep down level).

Your right about 1994 though. Overall, as I have mentioned in other threads, I am of the opinion, that are present system of parliamentary democracy is so flawed, that it requires a complete overhaul, and not just a comsmetic change such as abolishing the presidency. To be sure, I would oppose the abolition of that office it only served to make the office of Taoiseach yet more important.
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PostSubject: Re: Mary Robinson For President ! Again ?   Fri Dec 05, 2008 2:46 pm

Would she want to come back? Isn't she busy with her elder group now?
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PostSubject: Re: Mary Robinson For President ! Again ?   Fri Dec 05, 2008 5:09 pm

johnfás wrote:
Ah no, I don't think we should abolish the presidency. It is important that we have an international representative who is not political, in my opinion.

President, whilst weak, does of course also have some exercisable powers. Mary Robinson's refusal to dissolve the Dáil at the request of Albert Reynolds being an example.

I agree. 9/11 illuatrated that need perfectly. Ahern fumbled and dithered in his usual incoherant way, Harney was even worse. She talked about a "holiday" of the succeeding Friday when everyone, EXCEPT THOSE WORKING FOR AMERICAN MULTINATIONALS BASED IN IRELAND, had a freebie. Crass.

At least McAleese spoke for the nation in even measured tones conveying our sadness for the affected families etc. in logical coherant English without embarrassing us as a nation.
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PostSubject: Re: Mary Robinson For President ! Again ?   Fri Dec 05, 2008 7:11 pm

Slim Buddha wrote:


I agree. 9/11 illuatrated that need perfectly. Ahern fumbled and dithered in his usual incoherant way, Harney was even worse. She talked about a "holiday" of the succeeding Friday when everyone, EXCEPT THOSE WORKING FOR AMERICAN MULTINATIONALS BASED IN IRELAND, had a freebie. Crass.

It wasn't a "holiday", it was a national day of mourning which is something quite different and what the American multinationals did reflects on them, not on the politicians of our country.
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PostSubject: Re: Mary Robinson For President ! Again ?   Fri Dec 05, 2008 7:13 pm

I think that was precisely Slim Buddha's point, Ard. That Mary Harney called in a "holiday" and it was left to the President, in her wisdom, to pick up the pieces and provide proper reflective representation for the people of Ireland.
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PostSubject: Re: Mary Robinson For President ! Again ?   Fri Dec 05, 2008 7:38 pm

johnfás wrote:
I think that was precisely Slim Buddha's point, Ard. That Mary Harney called in a "holiday" and it was left to the President, in her wisdom, to pick up the pieces and provide proper reflective representation for the people of Ireland.

Hmm, I accept that johnfás. On Robinson's second term, I wouldn't see a reason why she cannot run again. Constitutionally she still has another term to her credit and if she can get 20 TDanna to back her(Labour, conveniently, fits the bill exactly) and the great and sovereign Irish people choose her as their constitutional guardian, more power to her!
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PostSubject: Re: Mary Robinson For President ! Again ?   Fri Dec 05, 2008 8:29 pm

Ard-Taoiseach wrote:
johnfás wrote:
I think that was precisely Slim Buddha's point, Ard. That Mary Harney called in a "holiday" and it was left to the President, in her wisdom, to pick up the pieces and provide proper reflective representation for the people of Ireland.

Hmm, I accept that johnfás. On Robinson's second term, I wouldn't see a reason why she cannot run again. Constitutionally she still has another term to her credit and if she can get 20 TDanna to back her(Labour, conveniently, fits the bill exactly) and the great and sovereign Irish people choose her as their constitutional guardian, more power to her!

People were quite upset with her for leaving, I think. For all the tweediness she was a good President and the Aras as day in day out full of different community groups and the normally-excluded. She was an incredibly hard worker and travelled the country length and breadth with her patient husband meeting people. I think that any comparison of her level of activity with Mary McAleese would be embarrassing to the latter.

I have met both of them, Robinson in her official capacity and McAleese over a cracking good dinner. Robinson I think, whatever about her personal awkwardness, is in a different league.


Last edited by cactus flower on Fri Dec 05, 2008 11:22 pm; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: Mary Robinson For President ! Again ?   Fri Dec 05, 2008 8:52 pm

I've met them in the precisely opposite capacity to you cactus! If I ever had you here for dinner you might even be drinking out of a glass which an incumbent president drank from Shocked

There was disquiet at her leaving the office a little bit early. However, I think it depends on who you talk to and there are also huge swathes of people who see her as perhaps the greatest holder of the position in Irish history.
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PostSubject: Re: Mary Robinson For President ! Again ?   Fri Dec 05, 2008 10:34 pm

Bored of women Presidents now, they're always 'building bridges', 'reaching out', and generally being 'inclusive'. It's all so unutterably dull. Having said that, if the alternative is Ahern then I'll support anyone. All hail President Seoige...
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PostSubject: Re: Mary Robinson For President ! Again ?   Fri Dec 05, 2008 10:57 pm

A couple of things re earlier posts.

Re the question - could the ability of a president to be re-elected unopposed be removed through legislation, the answer is no. It would require a constitutional amendment and that has no chance of being proposed or happening.

re the suggestion that Robinson would need to be nominated by four local authorities or 20 oireachtas member, no she wouldn't. As a one-term president she could nominate herself. That provision is there to avoid politicising a one-term president seeking a second term.

Re the suggestion that the presidency should be abolished, that frankly is a non-starter. Heads of state have very specific functions, a lot of which you do not see in the papers because the media cannot be bothered covering them. But they are important functions. If you abolished the presidency you would have to give them to the taoiseach and that would (a) give the office a status I think would be ill-advised and make it harder to keep him answerable. You'd find taoisigh announcing "sorry guys. I cannot do leaders questions in the Dáil. I've got presidency stuff to do. Executive presidents are notorious for dodging being answerable. Bush managed to dodge answering questions for months whereas prime ministers have to be answerable weekly.

As to Robinson versus McAleese, I know both women. Robinson is very nervous and awkward. McAleese is over the top. But I'd prefer Robinson any day, from experiencing both women. McAleese is great until the moment you cross her. Then she will screw you over. She takes offence at minor snubs and when that temper erupts you run and hide. She is either choking you with hugs if you likes you, or just chokes you.

She has also been a very poor president. Most of her speeches are empty clichés - hyperactive 'musha how are ya' performances that are more often than not embarrassing when she lets her huggy feely mood escape. Diplomats found Robinson at top class performer on state visits. They are frequently mortified with McAleese and her endless empty chatter. She comes out with one good soundbite followed by 15 minutes of cringe-inducing over the top hyperbole. She also regularly talks herself into trouble, whereas Robinson could do subtlety and nuance. Robisnon, for all her coldness (which is based on being actually very shy) I have always found genuine. McAleese I find superficial, OTT and all too often gives me the creeps. You get the urge to say to McAleese sometimes 'for the love of God, woman, will you shut up?' You never know whether she will be impressive or sound like she is going to sing kumbaya with a guitar! She can be like those annoying nuns who went all folk musicy after Vatican II and start getting all clappy happy at all the wrong moments. She can be really really annoying and state guests dread meeting her in case she is in one of her huggy feely moods and wants to start kissing and hugging everyone that gets near (bar those she has fallen out with who will experience the famous McAleese coldness and be blanked).


Last edited by Papal Knight on Fri Dec 05, 2008 11:09 pm; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: Mary Robinson For President ! Again ?   Fri Dec 05, 2008 11:01 pm

Not that I'm a fan of either, but could your attitude be influenced, in even a teeny-tiny way, by the fact that one was a FF nominee President and one was not?...
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PostSubject: Re: Mary Robinson For President ! Again ?   Fri Dec 05, 2008 11:11 pm

toxic avenger wrote:
Not that I'm a fan of either, but could your attitude be influenced, in even a teeny-tiny way, by the fact that one was a FF nominee President and one was not?...

No. I thought Paddy Hillery was much underrated and admired him. I dislike Mary Mac from experience, not because she is former FF. I have plenty of close FF friends. Party allegiance does not come into it.
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PostSubject: Re: Mary Robinson For President ! Again ?   Fri Dec 05, 2008 11:43 pm

I thought Mary Robinson had enough by 1997, but I certainly wouldn't have a problem with her being back in the Áras.

Failing Mary I returning, what about David Norris? Any sign of a bandwagon for him? 2011 isn't that far off. Other honourable mentions should go to John Hume, David Andrews, Alan Dukes, Garret and Michael D.

No need for me to mention Bertie, but I will Smile as it looks increasingly likely to me at any rate that he would fancy a run.
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PostSubject: Re: Mary Robinson For President ! Again ?   Fri Dec 05, 2008 11:49 pm

Hume is too ill, no?

Not many people know that John Hume is one of the heroes of the credit union movement in Ireland. He founded Derry Credit Union and was President of the Irish League of Credit Unions for a while.
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PostSubject: Re: Mary Robinson For President ! Again ?   Fri Dec 05, 2008 11:51 pm

Ronald Binge wrote:
I thought Mary Robinson had enough by 1997, but I certainly wouldn't have a problem with her being back in the Áras.

Failing Mary I returning, what about David Norris? Any sign of a bandwagon for him? 2011 isn't that far off. Other honourable mentions should go to John Hume, David Andrews, Alan Dukes, Garret and Michael D.

No need for me to mention Bertie, but I will Smile as it looks increasingly likely to me at any rate that he would fancy a run.

Certainly not Norris, he's not nearly as wildly popular as he no doubt thinks he is (outside D4 broadcasting circles anyway), and I doubt Hume would want it now for other reasons. It'd be nice to have a President not scared to speak out on behalf of the Irish people, now that nearly all of our elected representatives have abdicated that responsibility, but I'm sure it'll be the same old lily-livered party hackery...
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PostSubject: Re: Mary Robinson For President ! Again ?   Fri Dec 05, 2008 11:57 pm

Bertie it is then. Neutral
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