Michael D Higgins is Very Direct With Us
Here’s my favourite piece of direct speaking by an Irish politician. When Michael D Higgins became a Government Minister in 1993, he had to defend government censorship of broadcasting, which he had always opposed. When he was asked on RTE to clarify his position, this is what he replied: >>>
Michael D’s Reply
Michael D’s reply consisted of 120 words of waffle, followed by the phrase
I’ll be very direct with you
followed by another 134 words of waffle. Here it is in full:
Well, first of all, you know, responsibility for broadcasting has not been transferred to me yet, the order making that transfer has not been made, it will be made in the next few days, that’s the reality, and the other point is, of course, that the order precedes me, and it’s on the table of the Dáil, and it would take a resolution of the Dáil and so on to change that situation, if one wanted to, because that’s another issue, and what I said in my statement, which I issued only two days ago I think, was that I had little enthusiasm for restrictions on broadcasting, and I also had a respect for the complexity of broadcasting issues, and I’ll be very direct with you,
I said, I say in it, that the question of changing that policy would require very careful consideration, and he proposes to begin the process of consideration without delay, I’m certainly going to evaluate the operation of Section 31, and what I have stated further than that, one of my reasons are, is that, in relation to broadcasting, is a piece of broadcasting legislation the way to set about this, and I can, bluntly, my views haven’t changed, that I think it sits uncomfortably in broadcasting legislation, but I’m perfectly open, and I’m not, days before the order is made even transferring broadcasting to me, going to prejudge anything, I am simply going to consider it, and I will consider it, and I’ll look to it in its fullest and deepest sense, yes.