No amount of houses, yachts or portraits would ever fill Callely’s desire to be noticed,
writes John Drennan
He may now be more famous than Brian Cowen, but the strangest thing about the summer phenomenon of 2010 is that we know so little about the secret soul of Senator Ivor Callely.
We know Callely is a one-man poster boy for the venal cupidity of a political system, but what was it within Ivor that led to his current desolate state where he is poised to experience the rare ignominy of being expelled from the eternally forgiving Fianna Fail family?
It was a little bubble world in which Callely once could dream of full cabinet ranking and, if the fortune-teller in his childhood was right, maybe even the Presidency.
Sean Haughey may have taken Haughey peer’s seat in Dublin North Central, but, as the old dears squawked approvingly about that “young Ivan (sic) Callely”, Ivor believed he was the constituency boss and the real spiritual heir to Haughey. The dreaded days when a braying posse of supporters would crowd into the Dail bar in a fug of cheap cologne and dear suits are gone, for Ivor is no longer a political thug in a pink shirt knocking at the doors of the Cabinet.
One of the unwritten rules of Irish politics is that if you remain within the sanctuary of the Dail club even if you get into trouble nothing too bad can happen to you. But, if you sin sufficiently to be cast adrift, then you are in a world of trouble.
It is no wonder, therefore, that Ivor is not looking so chipper these days, for even his own are praying that this grotesque drama can quickly be brought to conclusion.
When other black sheep have arrived back to the Dail bar after their travails, they have been greeted with a great throaty roar that could be heard in the corridors.
In contrast, Callely has no one to advocate for him, or to even smile when this political ghost returns to Leinster House.
Some would say that Ivor is where he is now because he is simply stupid.
It certainly takes a special sort of idiot to be sacked as a junior minister, but his tragic flaw is deeper.
It would be excessively cruel to claim Ivor does not have a soul, but he does suffer from the toxic combination of a monstrous ego and a complete lack of emotional intelligence.
The most intriguing feature of the life of Ivor Callely is that there is no record in the secret oral histories that all TDs and senators have about their colleagues of a single act of generosity or kindness.
Though he was a political Rain Man who was only interested in Ivor, Mr Callely had his political role models. Bertie, in one of his incarnations as a municipal socialist, spoke famously about how he never wanted islands or yachts or any of that stuff.
But, while Ivor wanted the lot, there was a critical difference between him and Haughey.
With Haughey the yachts and the rest were trappings, for what really drove the former Taoiseach was a complex series of desires incorporating genuine patriotism and, of course, his own personal aggrandisement.
Ivor, however, had no real reason for being in politics beyond the desire for personal glory.
In that respect, he really was, in political terms, a boy without a soul.
The problem with the monstrous ego which fuelled the career of Callely wasn’t just that no amount of statues, houses, yachts or portraits would ever fill his desire to be noticed. The consequent absence of emotional intelligence meant that when the inevitable great fall arrived he was without a single friend.
We should be careful not to turn Ivor into a mythological figure, for Ivor Callely is a greedy, self-centred fool. Rather like his suits, he was one of the more lurid examples of how Fianna Fail betrayed the principles of the Republic, and itself, out of greed.
Even in the good times, his self-obsession meant that even in this most clubbable of places Ivor was always alone.
But now, at this nadir, Fianna Fail’s new Guy Fawkes is most assuredly on his own. And though he is an unlovely creature it is still a cruel, if deserved, place in which he now finds himself.
– John Drennan
Well, what can I an ordinary Joe soap add to this excellent summation of the current mêlées that has befallen Mr.Ivor Callely?
The most obvious omission of course is if you were to ask any person on the street without mentioning Mr.Callely, s name you will most likely hear a different TD, s name or Senators Name !The reason is amply expressed in the above article
Most of the people’s servants are perceived by the general public to be “in it for themselves “they are totally out of touch with the ordinary people on the street
Hold up in their ivory tower that the Dail has become they constantly shuffle for camera time and the babble out of their collective mouths is in stark contrast to their body language. If you don’t believe me just turn off the babble and just look at the pictures
anyone with a bit of life experience will immediately see that these people are just going through the motions and it is also plain to see that they don’t really know what they are talking about.
the Dail membership becomes the soul purpose for these addicts of power, its perks and the association of such power the promises dispensed during the election campaign are long forgotten and the new mantra is all hail to the local Gombeeen whom we are all now destined to come crawling to if we lose our jobs or need to get a bed in the local hospital or have the local river cleaned up
Make no mistake Ivor Callely is a saint when it comes to the real sliveens in the Dail
the system is totally rotten !