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Liam Cosgrave RIP

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  • 04-10-2017 10:27pm
    #1
    Registered Users Posts: 3,482 ✭✭✭


    Mr. Cosgrave was a pure gentleman of the old stock and gave politicians a honest decent name.


«1345

Comments

  • Registered Users Posts: 27,502 ✭✭✭✭blanch152


    His views on contraception and women's rights were outdated, even by his time.

    However, to his eternal credit, he stood strong against the IRA and its ilk during a time when this State was under threat from those terrorists. For that he will be remembered as a good Taoiseach.


  • Posts: 13,712 ✭✭✭✭ [Deleted User]


    What exactly does "old stock" mean?

    He was an average, or below-average-performing Taoiseach. He was Fine Gael's DeValera, except lacking DeValera's imagination (thankfully).

    I don't really think it's relevant whether he tipped his cap to ladies in that exaggerated/ affected way, if that's what you mean by 'gentleman of the old stock'.


  • Registered Users Posts: 3,482 ✭✭✭kk.man


    What exactly does "old stock" mean?

    He was an average, or below-average-performing Taoiseach. He was Fine Gael's DeValera, except lacking DeValera's imagination (thankfully).

    I don't really think it's relevant whether he tipped his cap to ladies in that exaggerated/ affected way, if that's what you mean by 'gentleman of the old stock'.
    Whatever you decide...Dont believe the man did any harm to you and sadly he has just past on. Have some respect, if that's possible.


  • Posts: 13,712 ✭✭✭✭ [Deleted User]


    kk.man wrote: »
    Whatever you decide...Dont believe the man did any harm to you and sadly he has just past on. Have some respect, if that's possible.
    Nor have I done any harm to him personally. I'm talking about his role in political life, which can be characterized as positive only in the sense that is was characterised by inertia and lack of imagination.

    we haven't had a similarly regressive Taoiseach in the history of the State, with the exception of DeValera; and even DeValera's reputation in this regard is mitigated by his constructive imagination in other areas (social policy, Fundamental Rights/ the Rule of Law in the 1937 Constitution, etc.)


  • Registered Users Posts: 27,502 ✭✭✭✭blanch152


    Nor have I done any harm to him personally. I'm talking about his role in political life, which can be characterized as positive only in the sense that is was characterised by inertia and lack of imagination.

    we haven't had a similarly regressive Taoiseach in the history of the State, with the exception of DeValera; and even DeValera's reputation in this regard is mitigated by his constructive imagination in other areas (social policy, Fundamental Rights/ the Rule of Law in the 1937 Constitution, etc.)

    Cosgrave was Taoiseach at a time when the economy was in crisis which he managed well but also at a time when the existence of the State was threatened by subversive IRA terrorists. Even during World War II, we didn't face the same threat. By being so resolute in the face of such a threat, Cosgrave performed his role admirably.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 3,482 ✭✭✭kk.man


    Nor have I done any harm to him personally. I'm talking about his role in political life, which can be characterized as positive only in the sense that is was characterised by inertia and lack of imagination.

    we haven't had a similarly regressive Taoiseach in the history of the State, with the exception of DeValera; and even DeValera's reputation in this regard is mitigated by his constructive imagination in other areas (social policy, Fundamental Rights/ the Rule of Law in the 1937 Constitution, etc.)

    The same social policy that led to the economic war with the UK which almost bankrupt the country and the 'commonly maidens' theory of policitial vision.


  • Posts: 13,712 ✭✭✭✭ [Deleted User]


    blanch152 wrote: »
    Cosgrave was Taoiseach at a time when the economy was in crisis which he managed well
    He managed well?

    Er, he most certainly didn't. Liam Cosgrave has the dubious distinction of being the first Taoiseach to lead a Government that was intent on deficit-spending.

    He was a Keynesian without having the purse of a Keynesian, nor apparently even knowledge of what Keynesianism entailed ... it made no sense for a small, open economy like Ireland, at that time.

    Can you please give details as to what you mean when you celebrate his policies, which were carried on, quite disastrously, by Lynch and FitzGerald after him?

    There have been plenty of lovely, quite well-deserved, positive things said about Liam Cosgrave today. And that is only right and proper.

    But you won't hear many people -- at least, those who know their economics/ economic history -- saying that Cosgrave's Government managed the economy well.
    kk.man wrote: »
    The same social policy that led to the economic war with the UK which...
    Social policy is not the same as economic policy. I would specifically reference the extremely self-confident construction of thousands of social houses by the De Valera Governments, who practically cleared the slums of Ireland. The same policy was (among the?) first in Europe in allowing, and encouraging, social-housing tenants to buy their own homes.

    By the way, DeValera had a disastrous influence on this country, in case anyone thinks I'm an apologist for his legacy. I just recognize that, for all his faults, he did have conviction, and deserves recognition for some of his social policies, as well as the institution of our 1937 constitution with it's remarkably liberal attitude towards individual freedom and fundamental human rights, at a time when the rest of Europe was declining into tyranny and totalitarianism.


  • Registered Users Posts: 13,662 ✭✭✭✭Danzy


    An inflexible control freak with a very poor economic vision for the country at a time of great crisis.


  • Registered Users Posts: 22,148 ✭✭✭✭Esel


    Was the Heavy Gang brought into being under his watch?

    Not your ornery onager



  • Registered Users Posts: 3,482 ✭✭✭kk.man


    The real disaster of the 1970s came from the FF manifesto of 1977 which plunged this country into economic hardship that resulted in a lost decade for the 1980s.
    Dev was an extremely closed minded politician with populist policies. There is Archbishop Mc Quaid influence in the 1937 constitution together with growing influence of church and state controls on our society. Unfortunately led the institutional crisis of which have been recently exposed.
    Cosgrave short time in power dealt with the explosion of the troubles and the oil crisis of which he proved a safe pair of hands. He had no Irish Press or school book texts to enhance his reputation.


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  • Closed Accounts Posts: 16,015 ✭✭✭✭James Brown


    Esel wrote: »
    Was the Heavy Gang brought into being under his watch?

    Looks like it was okay to pick people up off the street to beat and torture them if you 'knew' they did something, even if the available evidence was to the contrary.
    I suppose that's what the British forces were doing up in the North, so monkey see, monkey do.


  • Registered Users Posts: 68,235 ✭✭✭✭FrancieBrady


    Despite attempts to elevate his political contribution way above what it actually was, he was an average Taoiseach and politician.

    He was typical FG too - talk the high moral talk but stoop as low as the 'Heavy Gang' when it suited. That chapter in our history was a pretty despicable one and Irish people need to be constantly reminded of it. Especially those who routinely climb up onto the higher moral ground.

    I know nothing of him personally but he seems to have been an amicable enough man. Sympathy to his family on his loss.


  • Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 9,696 Mod ✭✭✭✭Manach


    May he RIP. The 70s were a time of economic chaos, political turmoil and various hot incidents during the Cold War. Mr. Cosgrave seemed to have steered a steady course as possible during his tenure in this environment as Ireland was buffeted by these trends. Criticism based on him not meeting the exalted standards on todays enlightened times, part and parcel of such times.


  • Registered Users Posts: 68,235 ✭✭✭✭FrancieBrady


    Manach wrote: »
    May he RIP. The 70s were a time of economic chaos, political turmoil and various hot incidents during the Cold War. Mr. Cosgrave seemed to have steered a steady course as possible during his tenure in this environment as Ireland was buffeted by these trends. Criticism based on him not meeting the exalted standards on todays enlightened times, part and parcel of such times.

    Off topic maybe. But I love this excusing of some. Others are vilified for their past behaviours/actions, some get the 'they were different times' dilution.
    Those responsible for unleashing the 'Heavy Gang' or turning a blind eye to what they did should have done jail imo.


  • Registered Users Posts: 14,768 ✭✭✭✭elperello


    RIP and condolences to family.

    The Heavy Gang era is a blot on the record of all responsible.
    It's never a good idea for politicians to give a sense of invincibility to security forces.
    Some of our current policing difficulties are rooted in that period.
    It would however be unfair to blame Liam Cosgrave and his colleagues entirely.
    Other politicians had many opportunities to put proper structures and checks and balances in place but they failed.


  • Moderators, Recreation & Hobbies Moderators Posts: 21,085 Mod ✭✭✭✭Brian?


    Manach wrote: »
    May he RIP. The 70s were a time of economic chaos, political turmoil and various hot incidents during the Cold War. Mr. Cosgrave seemed to have steered a steady course as possible during his tenure in this environment as Ireland was buffeted by these trends. Criticism based on him not meeting the exalted standards on todays enlightened times, part and parcel of such times.

    But he was a dinosaur for his own time. His own government introduced legislation to the Dáil legalising contraception for married couples, he voted against it. Just one point on which he should be vilified. He was a man of conviction alright, but there was nothing to admired about his convictions.

    they/them/theirs


    And so on, and so on …. - Slavoj Žižek




  • Registered Users Posts: 27,502 ✭✭✭✭blanch152


    Brian? wrote: »
    But he was a dinosaur for his own time. His own government introduced legislation to the Dáil legalising contraception for married couples, he voted against it. Just one point on which he should be vilified. He was a man of conviction alright, but there was nothing to admired about his convictions.

    He allowed a free vote on a matter of conscience, those against it don't like the outcome.


  • Moderators, Recreation & Hobbies Moderators Posts: 21,085 Mod ✭✭✭✭Brian?


    blanch152 wrote: »
    He allowed a free vote on a matter of conscience, those against it don't like the outcome.

    Yes?

    My point: even in his time he was regressive. He voted according to Catholic doctorine. I don’t find anything to admire about that.

    they/them/theirs


    And so on, and so on …. - Slavoj Žižek




  • Registered Users Posts: 27,502 ✭✭✭✭blanch152


    Brian? wrote: »
    Yes?

    My point: even in his time he was regressive. He voted according to Catholic doctorine. I don’t find anything to admire about that.


    Conservative rather than regressive.

    Not admiring it, I am just pointing out the fact that when you hear calls for a free vote these days, it is most usual from the liberal perspective. Ironic that Cosgrave gets criticised for a free vote from the same perspective. Seems like you can have a free vote so long as you vote the way we want you to.


  • Registered Users Posts: 3,482 ✭✭✭kk.man


    On the contraception issue which was entirely he own choice. He voted according to his moral compass just as many religious minded politicians might. What's more unusual about he was the leader of the country. Pity more leaders don't have as much courage.

    Btw I am not anti contraception or pro church when I make this argument. I think people who discribes it as regressive are not looking at it from a holistic view just a mere bashing exercise.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 27,502 ✭✭✭✭blanch152


    kk.man wrote: »
    On the contraception issue which was entirely he own choice. He voted according to his moral compass just as many religious minded politicians might. What's more unusual about he was the leader of the country. Pity more leaders don't have as much courage.

    Btw I am not anti contraception or pro church when I make this argument. I think people who discribes it as regressive are not looking at it from a holistic view just a mere bashing exercise.


    The danger with free votes on conscience issues is that they do not always reflect the wider societal views. The good thing is that politicians are actually being asked to stand up for their own actual beliefs and lead from the front.

    It leaves me with mixed views about them particularly as the ones most strident for free votes generally believe their cause will benefit most from one rather than that they are a good idea per se.


  • Moderators, Recreation & Hobbies Moderators Posts: 21,085 Mod ✭✭✭✭Brian?


    kk.man wrote: »
    On the contraception issue which was entirely he own choice. He voted according to his moral compass just as many religious minded politicians might. What's more unusual about he was the leader of the country. Pity more leaders don't have as much courage.

    Btw I am not anti contraception or pro church when I make this argument. I think people who discribes it as regressive are not looking at it from a holistic view just a mere bashing exercise.

    I’m not describing it as regressive. It was regressive. How can you describe it any other way?

    As for this moral compass argument, I don’t buy it. His moral compass was set by the Catholic Church, not by what was best for the people of Ireland. Why would you admire someone for sticking by their religious belief system when it brought harm to the people he was supposed to serve? I’m glad more politicians didn’t have this type of “courage”. It did nothing but hold us back.

    Voting to keep contraception illegal in the 1970s. The 1970s!

    they/them/theirs


    And so on, and so on …. - Slavoj Žižek




  • Moderators, Recreation & Hobbies Moderators Posts: 21,085 Mod ✭✭✭✭Brian?


    blanch152 wrote: »
    Conservative rather than regressive.

    Two sides of the same coin.

    Not admiring it, I am just pointing out the fact that when you hear calls for a free vote these days, it is most usual from the liberal perspective. Ironic that Cosgrave gets criticised for a free vote from the same perspective. Seems like you can have a free vote so long as you vote the way we want you to.

    I don’t care about free votes. I care about doing what’s right. Politicians should vote in the best interests of the people who elected them, not on the orders of a the Religious establishment.

    Say what you want about Edna, he actually upheld this principle very well. One of the few things I admired about him. He put aside his own religious beliefs when he came to social issues.

    they/them/theirs


    And so on, and so on …. - Slavoj Žižek




  • Registered Users Posts: 27,502 ✭✭✭✭blanch152


    Brian? wrote: »
    I’m not describing it as regressive. It was regressive. How can you describe it any other way?

    As for this moral compass argument, I don’t buy it. His moral compass was set by the Catholic Church, not by what was best for the people of Ireland. Why would you admire someone for sticking by their religious belief system when it brought harm to the people he was supposed to serve? I’m glad more politicians didn’t have this type of “courage”. It did nothing but hold us back.

    Voting to keep contraception illegal in the 1970s. The 1970s!

    Regressive is a pejorative term and implies it was a step backward and that contraception is an obvious good thing. However, that ignores the views of a number of religions that still hold sway over large numbers of people across the world.

    I disagree with the decision to allow a free vote, I would have voted the other way to him, but I respect his decision to vote in accordance with his conscience, but while I would describe his position as conservative, I would not describe it as regressive.


  • Moderators, Recreation & Hobbies Moderators Posts: 21,085 Mod ✭✭✭✭Brian?


    blanch152 wrote: »
    Regressive is a pejorative term and implies it was a step backward and that contraception is an obvious good thing. However, that ignores the views of a number of religions that still hold sway over large numbers of people across the world.

    I disagree with the decision to allow a free vote, I would have voted the other way to him, but I respect his decision to vote in accordance with his conscience, but while I would describe his position as conservative, I would not describe it as regressive.

    We can argue the wording all day, I don’t think either of us will budge on it. But I can’t respect someone for voting based on their conscience when it did harm to he people he was supposed to represent. I find nothing to admire or respect in it.

    they/them/theirs


    And so on, and so on …. - Slavoj Žižek




  • Registered Users Posts: 68,235 ✭✭✭✭FrancieBrady


    If you go against what your party want to do to modernise, that is 'regressive' all day long regardless of conscience.


  • Registered Users Posts: 3,482 ✭✭✭kk.man


    Brian? wrote: »
    Two sides of the same coin.



    I don’t care about free votes. I care about doing what’s right. Politicians should vote in the best interests of the people who elected them, not on the orders of a the Religious establishment.

    Say what you want about Edna, he actually upheld this principle very well. One of the few things I admired about him. He put aside his own religious beliefs when he came to social issues.

    Enda had to, Lucinda was chomping at the bit!


  • Registered Users Posts: 3,482 ✭✭✭kk.man


    Brian? wrote: »
    Two sides of the same coin.



    I don’t care about free votes. I care about doing what’s right. Politicians should vote in the best interests of the people who elected them, not on the orders of a the Religious establishment.

    Say what you want about Edna, he actually upheld this principle very well. One of the few things I admired about him. He put aside his own religious beliefs when he came to social issues.

    Where's the evidence he acted on the orders of a reglious establishment?

    Liam Cosgrave used the word 'conscience' there is a difference.


  • Moderators, Recreation & Hobbies Moderators Posts: 21,085 Mod ✭✭✭✭Brian?


    kk.man wrote: »
    Where's the evidence he acted on the orders of a reglious establishment?

    Liam Cosgrave used the word 'conscience' there is a difference.

    It was his conscience though, was it? It was religious indoctrination.

    To be fair to him, he wasn’t alone in that failing. He had a lot of company in fact. I just don’t see it as something to admire, the way some people do.

    they/them/theirs


    And so on, and so on …. - Slavoj Žižek




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  • Posts: 13,712 ✭✭✭✭ [Deleted User]


    Manach wrote: »
    Criticism based on him not meeting the exalted standards on todays enlightened times, part and parcel of such times.
    This has already been answered, but it deserves emphasis.

    It is inaccurate to imply that Cosgrave's outlook is merely incompatible with today's standards. He was remarkably pious -- indeed, fundamentalist -- by the standards of that time.

    Public opinion had galloped far ahead of Cosgrave by the time he finally retired. His political outlook seemed to have stopped maturing the 1950's, and by the time he retired in 1981, his outlook was totally out of sync with public opinion.


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