Sunset, Leinster House


The triclour above the Dail at half-mast this evening to mark the death of Junior Minister Shane McEntee from an apparent suicide.

Death Announced Of Minister Of State Shane McEntee (RTE)

Pic via Aodhan O Riordan

76 thoughts on “Sunset, Leinster House

    1. anvil

      I see the Irish Times has reported he took his own life whereas the Indo and Examiner on their online editions don’t.
      The correct decision I think.
      The public are entitled to the real truth about their elected representatives.
      Condolences to his family.

      1. Helen

        well – McEntee wasn’t a class act. Cutting child benefit was immoral. Let’s not forget the man he was, rather than weeping over some nostalgic image.

        1. tohelen

          How is cutting child benefit immoral?
          A universal payment with no means-testing sounds more immoral, Or paying unsecured bondholders sounds more immoral … Just a thought Helen …

          1. helen

            every heard of a third rate of taxation – you can get welfare back very easily from those who don’t need it that way.

        2. liam

          Yes, agree, Helen, we should judge others on their deeds and words. Using these criteria, and judging your actions, you are a silly, stupid, classless woman who has no right to judge the morality or class of others.
          Rest in peace, Shane, and condolences to your family.

          1. helen

            Sorry, I should really tip my hat to a man who cut child welfare and care respite. He was a deeply caring man.

      2. Jerra

        Why would Broadsheet post about this unless they were hoping for some incendiary comments?
        100 comments saying “condolences” isn’t very interesting, is it?

        1. helen

          Perhaps because, the vast majority of people in this country would not consider a man who put property before children and the disabled a good man. Not all of use are addicted to maudlin sentimentality. He cut child welfare and increased child poverty.

          1. Pedanto

            Everything you’ve said can be paraphrased as “I disagreed with him politically, and the immediate aftermath of his death is exactly the time to express this disagreement as coldly as I can.”

          2. Eliot Rosewater

            It’s a comments page on a website, it’s not like she’s knocking on the door of his family’s house and spitting in their faces.

            The man, in my opinion, had very very dubious political beliefs, and translated them into political actions that have had a devastating effect on the Irish people. A comments page on a website like this is just such a place to voice those opinions.

          3. Pedanto

            She’s being horrible and self-righteous. The guy’s widow doesn’t have to be in the room to make that tasteless.

            But it’s the internet. The widow is ALWAYS in the room.

          4. liam

            Helen, nobody is asking you to tip your hat to anyone. Maybe try not to be such a shitty, ignorant hypocrite, that’s all.

          5. Susan

            Can’t help wondering what your beef in this is, Helen. There is something very cold and hard-faced about your comments. Very personal and vindictive. It is quite possible to be unimpressed by a man or woman’s political stance and make that feeling clear in the fullness of time. I have quite vehement feelings about some particular individuals featured on this site, but even I wouldn’t go as far as you have with your comments on McEntee. Even if everything you say is true, you are the kind of person who is right all the time and in whose company everybody else moves their chairs so as not to be stuck sitting next to you.

        2. helen

          my beef, susan, is this – i see children going to school every day hungry. i see the conditions they have to study in – public schools that are falling about their ears. I see carers struggling to make end’s meet, and doing the best they can. and i see politicians punish good people and young children for being born. I see mcentee saying that 700 euor will get you a week in a hotel. people who don’t have twenty pounds in their wallets. i don’t care about popularity, i don’t care if people move away from me, though i do know, that most people hate the vicious cuts aimed at the poor. I do care that people like mcentee, rather than targeting the powerful, targeted the vulnerable. he waged a war against the poor and desperate. it’s fine if you are well off, but ten euro will sink children into poverty, and even in the celtic tiger days ireland had one of the worst child poverty rates in the western industrialised world.

          1. Susan

            Well you are consistent, Helen, I will give you that.. I do suspect that his actions affected the vulnerable because he himself was made vulnerable by other agency.

            My suspicion is that most politicians do not hold the kind of power you think they do, crass comments or otherwise. Power is concentrated in a very small number of hands here. The hands of people who wouldn’t dream of ending their lives if 10,000 people signed a petition.

    1. taipan

      One of his last acts was to ensure some level of support for homeowners whose houses were suffering from pyrite damage due to shoddy Celtic Tiger building standards.

      Most of those who benefited from this couldn’t vote for him, so the political pay-off for him was marginal.

      1. helen

        and yet he accepted many a campaign contribution from celtic tiger builders – his campaign contribution files online make interesting reading.

        1. SDaedalus

          Well, he’s gone now, Helen, so what’s the point in bringing it up at this stage other than the fact you can’t defame the dead? A death is a death, no matter what way you look at it. My condolences to his family.

          1. helen

            i agree – it’s very sad for the family. but, not for the nation – which does not really care one way or the other. the people didn’t honour him, don’t honour him, and won’t remember him. and there’s no defamation in what i said – he took campaign contributions from builders (it’s on public record) and he voted for child welfare cuts and for respite care cuts. Again, that’s on record.

          2. SDaedalus

            I don’t recall anyone describing his death as sad for the nation, or saying that the people would honour him; though I’d consider it a bit presumptuous to speak for the nation or the people myself.

            Anyone’s death is sad, and not just for their family, no matter what way you look at it. One life less. And if no one will remember him why bother commenting on this fact at all.. btw no one will remember most of us, so bloody what…

  1. KeithFahey’s Moustache

    It will be interesting to see how quickly Enda and co hold the election to fill his seat???

    Thouhgts are with his family and loved ones at this time.

    1. Cian

      Legally the writ must be issued within 6 months which means absolute max 7 months out. They won’t hold it for a while but its impossible to do what FF did and delay for an age (holding on to power as they knew they’d lose all 4).

    2. Paul

      Why do people always state the obvious by using the words “It will be interesting to see XYZ…”

      It won’t be interesting. There’ll be a by-election sometime during 2013. Big swinging mickey.

      1. Ahjayzis

        Don’t the parties where a TD dies tragically usually get a sympathy vote and pull through though?

        Awful sad anyway, thoughts with his family, far too young :o(

        1. Tickle

          This will probably be the first time people get to vent their rage against FG etc.

          I’m assuming, obviously.

          Imagine FF getting in. Or SF.


          Yes, I went there…. BOOM!

  2. agriolouloudo

    What is the matter with BS commenters? The cynicism and lack of sensitivity in this country makes me feel ashamed to be Irish.

    1. Mani

      Jesus wept. Out of all the things that shakes your patriotism, it’s online commenters? Go away and have talk to yourself.

  3. SD

    The people who leave snide corrosively cynical comments on hearing this tragic news should be utterly ashamed of themselves. This is a human tragedy and a family are grieving. Politicians are human beings and it is not ok to make lazy cruel comments. Vote, debate, engage. Leave the awful, painful smug and cruel comments out of it. A terrible loss for this family and his friends. RIP

      1. Eliot Rosewater

        I’d say the people who automatically post ‘RIP’ to someone they never knew, and by doing so, ignore his political contributions to society (whether you think they were good or bad) is a far better example of lazy commenting.

        The man had an effect – whether good or bad – on our society. We should never fall in to the trap of forgiving people their actions simply because they’re dead. Especially when the effect of those actions are still being felt, and other (living) politicians are standing by their decisions.

  4. martco

    to some of the posters to this trail…..
    lads step away for a minute and have a think about what you’re writing here…it seems likely from the available info that this man took is own life. So what sort of a state does a man or woman have to be in to get to that point?!? I tried to imagine that place yesterday…I’m thinking that there’s no way…surely no way that I’d allow myself get to a position where I had to ignore the moral human basics and to serve and carry out and defend the party position of some corrupted Reischmarschall….or as my 9 year old might put it LIES. These c*ts LIED. THEY LIED. And you can spin or dress those lies up in as many number of Orwellian ways you want but its still LIES. like I’ve lied a couple of times in my own life say to get out of some stupid social scenario or somesuch and I don’t like it and I feel like utter shit for a few days afterwards and curse my stupidity…and when I take that feeling and amplify it x10000000 times then I start to see how a human being who participated in a family life and a community of people, who probably loved and was loved by many could get f*ked up to the point where the only way out was a gun or an overdose or whatever it was in the end for him.

    SO lay off of him and his family (apart from just displaying some decency and decorum yourself) instead concentrate on what happened here and what is happening in that pyramid scheme of lies that he was part of and killed himself to get out of. There’s a likely reason. That a man, a fellow human being got himself into a SHITTY position, a position he knew was wrong (and by all reports it seems probably trying his ass off to counterbalance the SHIT doled out to him by his masters by other good deeds) but it just got to be too much to take….he wasn’t cut out for the business of lying and cheating on behalf of FF/FG/LAB/INSERT AS DESIRED…didn’t have the brass neck it seems. He was probably understandably unlike those megalomaniac psychopaths like Varadwankar and worse still those pair of utter fckn gimps Gilmore and Rabitte.

    Christmas is the prefect time for reflection. The system is corrupt (more than it ever was) It’s broken. It isn’t ours anymore. FIX THE SYSTEM.

    Happy Christmas

    1. helen

      he didn’t kill himself over the cuts – he had a long history of depression. despite having private health care, the doctors were not able to help him. His constituents did not kill him – either did the people who were made extremely anxious by the cuts he voted through. Hopefully the system will be fixed in 2013 – everyone yearns for that.

  5. Orieldude

    One of the main reasons we’ll never have real change in this country’s political system is that the best ideas the most vocal opponents of the status quo have seem to barely extend beyond chucking rocks at cops and buildings, ad hominem attacks on the establishment and punishing anyone who has the cheek to earn more than 50 grand a year.

  6. cousinjack

    Is the rate of suicide higher in Ireland than elsewhere?
    Are we obsessed about suicide?
    Residual catholic guilt?
    a society that is unwilling to confront its weaknesses?

  7. cousinjack

    Some FGers are saying that a contributary factor to this mans suicide was the ‘bullying’ he received from the public.
    Who becomes a politician if they can’t take grief from the public FFS?
    Perhaps if they are so sensitive they should not vote to cut respite care, etc?

  8. cousinjack

    Why in Ireland is it not legitmate to criticise the dead for their actions?
    Death is the fact of life, why should every death be framed as a tragic waste?
    Is the gauze of sentimentality the fatal weakness of the Irish?

    1. Pedanto

      Well, it is one of my favourite gauzes.

      Of course it’s legitimate to criticise the dead. People usually wait a day or two before doing it where his family might hear, that’s all.

      1. helen

        what, his family doesn’t know that he was very unpopular for his welfare cutting exploits? they’re not stupid.

  9. Holden MaGroin

    I don’t think anyone on here thinks that we should not appraise or hold politician’s accountable for their decisions.

    But good God people the man’s body is hardly cold.

    At the end of the day he was a man with a family. Have some respect and basic cop on before saying your piece.

      1. Pedanto

        Jerra, seriously. Do you really feel compromised by, say, giving it a week?

        Of all the things to debunk, a funeral eulogy feels the most mean-spirited. And inefficient too: most people aren’t going to engage with your points, they’re just going to think you’re being horrible. There’s a hundred other government politicians you can have a go at. Why pick the one whose family is in such distress?

        I do take your general point, and I love when people question the social conventions, but some of them became conventions for a good reason.

        1. helen

          yep – a week is too long – we have to deal with the hypocrisy of eulogies, rte saying he was the greatest man ever, etc. truth unvarnished is best, always best.

        1. Pedanto

          You say you’ll fax, Holden, but I’ve a few choice words about Otto Von Bismarck I’ve been biting back forever.

    1. helen

      every one has a family – not everyone votes to cut respite care or children’s allowance – and very few normal people would. i’m sure Shane’s family never had to deal with poverty – ten euro means a child on the poverty line (and there are tens of thousands of them) falling into actual poverty. He didn’t give families a week, why should we give him a week? It’d be dishonest.

  10. Dan O'Neill

    Aside from all the political stuff:

    Why is it that no-one in this country can get the flag correctly flown at half mast? Only ever seen it flown correctly once – over the DoD headqtrs down near Phoenix Park.

    1. helen

      well – the people who put up the flag are low paid workers – i’m guessing they couldn’t give a sh@t how mcentee was saluted.

        1. helen

          if they didn’t do the job – they wouldn’t get paid. doesn’t mean they should do the job well. pay badly, then don’t expect perfection. the same happened when they flew half mast for the Princess of Wales – they flew it wrong. who cares? both of the saluted were worthless pieces of @@@@

          1. Dan O'Neill

            Got any facts to back that up? Can’t imagine the stewards in Leinster House would be paid badly.

            Though you’re right – they get it wrong quite a lot.

            Also it doesn’t matter who its “saluting” (the flag salutes no-one but that’s a different matter) – it should be done correctly, it is a symbol of our state.

            You should definitely give this doc a read – worth knowing about the flag:,_Flag,_Anthem_Harp/National_Flag.html

          2. helen

            i actually know one of the people who drew up that document. they had a long argument about the etiquette of the dipping of the flag at the consecration of the eucharist (i kid you not). It was taken out of the rule-book (the older one’s had given given advice on it). that always stuck in my mind.

  11. SD

    Helen – you come across as a horrible, pompous fool- I’m glad that you aren’t as far as I know, in charge of making decisions for the public because your lack of empathy and twisting of facts to suit your trot like agenda is truly depressing. Your lack of any kind of sophisticated argument, just emotive populist tripe would make me wonder why anyone would become a politician who had to represent fools like you. Go away. The silent majority are better than the likes of you. I hope you never have to experience the lack of compassion- small minded ramblings that you have subjected this forum to. I pity you.

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