So should we offer a Cead Mile Failte to Donald Trump, or build a wall to keep him out – and make him pay for it?
Many people in the media here in Ireland have been observing the Trump phenomenon in the U.S. with a mixture of bemusement and disgust. ' How can Americans be so gullible?', the Irish commentariat ask.
The truth is, however, that an Irish version of Trump would probably do very well here.
If an Irish politician had the guts to offer the same kind of populist, simplistic solutions to the complex problems we face, the likelihood is that he or she would hoover up support just like Trump is doing.
Just as in the U.S., many people here are fed up with career politicians, with the established system and the way it is mired in political correctness and constrained by an inability to take decisive action on just about anything.
Last week's news that Trump is coming here at the end of the month caused consternation in some sections of the Irish media. The Donald will be making a flying visit to us, but the alarm in the media here is unlikely to be reflected in the reception he will get among ordinary people.
That will be particularly true around Doonbeg in Co. Clare where Trump has invested heavily in the golf course resort he owns there, giving jobs to many local people.
The usual collection of loony lefties are already making plans to demonstrate and disrupt his visit. If anything, their protests are likely to annoy people here rather than be supported by them – and they certainly won't bother Trump. He's used to it, as we have seen recently.
For him the visit will be a double win, an international publicity boost for the golf course and a popularity boost for himself among Irish American voters back in the U.S.
Given the official attitude to him, we are not going to see a repeat of the embarrassing welcome given to Trump in Shannon in 2014, complete with harpist, fiddler and an obsequious Minister for Finance Michael Noonan at the end of the red carpet up to his plane. Back then he was just a businessman, albeit one with billions to spread around.
These days he's also a politician, with views that are far too unbridled for our sensitive leaders. But how unacceptable is he really?
His objectionable comments relating to women, for example, can be put down to verbal ineptitude rather than chauvinism. The guy is barely articulate at times, is inexperienced at political speech-making, and regularly “misspeaks,” as Americans say. But that does not mean he hates women and he has done his best to apologize?
Similarly, his comments on banning Muslims from entering the U.S., something that is regularly trotted out in the media here without any qualification, does not mean he hates all Muslims. What he actually said is that he wanted to ban Muslims from entering the U.S. until vetting by immigration authorities was brought up to speed.
Given the terror caused in the U.S. by Islamic fundamentalists, and the ongoing threat from ISIS and others, one can argue that this is an understandable, if extreme, position. It might have been better to define the problem by a blacklist of geographical areas rather than by religion, but is that more acceptable or less racist?
It's the same with The Wall. His comments about Mexicans who enter the U.S. illegally were clearly unacceptable but, given the number of Hispanics he employs, he obviously does not have a problem with all Mexicans. And whoever pays for it, the idea of building a wall to secure the U.S. southern border is not racist or extreme.
In southern Europe right now, several countries are building walls to control flows of illegal migrants and many people in northern Europe support that, no matter what their leaders say in public.
Last week in the Dail, Taoiseach Enda Kenny called Trump's comments on immigration "racist and dangerous." That's easy for Kenny to say, and it's the kind of holier-than-thou guff that sounds good but means little.
The fact is we have done little in Ireland to face up to the reality of the migrant crisis in Europe, instead preferring to boast about how humanitarian we are. Kenny would be far better reconsidering the role of the Irish Navy ships in the Med and asking honestly how much of a pull factor it is for economic migrants trying to cross into Europe.
It's easy for us when we are "rescuing" all these unvetted people – the vast majority of them young men who are not from Syria – and landing them in Italy.
Judging by the comments on Irish media websites, many people here regard our navy as providing a ferry service for illegal immigrants into Europe, with predictable tragic results. There was another major tragedy in the Med a week ago when another overcrowded boat got into trouble before navy ships became aware of it.
The fact is that Trump is articulating the concerns of many ordinary people on issues like immigration and jobs, and he is doing it without being muzzled by political correctness. He may not be right about the simplistic solutions he puts forward, but many people find that refreshing.
Now that he has the Republican nomination in the bag, he is already toning down the language and walking back some of his positions into a more nuanced stance. Given his success in business, he's clearly not stupid, so we will see more of this in the weeks ahead as he tries to broaden his appeal.
All of the above are reasons Trump is seen as a threat by people of liberal views, both in the U.S. and Europe. But in Ireland the main threat he poses is economic, and on that score there is little difference between him and Hillary Clinton.
Both of them are promising to bring jobs back to America and to punish U.S. companies that avoid U.S. tax by holding their wealth overseas. And as we all know, Ireland is a prominent player in this game.
Corporation tax is just 12.5 percent in Ireland, compared with an effective rate in the U.S. of 39 percent (when you combine federal and state taxes). And of course some of the biggest U.S. companies here pay only a few percent in corporation tax rather than our 12.5 percent headline rate, when they use various legal methods of cutting their tax bill.
It's no wonder that so many of them set up here, which is great for us but not so good for jobs in the U.S. The U.S. itself is partly to blame for the situation because these companies can defer tax liability in the U.S. on foreign profits until they are repatriated into the U.S.
For many of the biggest companies this postponement continues indefinitely. The result is that hugely profitable U.S. multinationals pay almost no tax in Ireland and none in the U.S. either.
Clinton has said she is going to change this, but Trump has made it more of a priority in his campaign. The amount of money held overseas by these companies is known to be trillions of dollars, and they will lobby Congress to try to prevent any change in that.
Clearly if the money could be brought back to the U.S. and invested in jobs there it would make a huge difference to the American economy. But it could have a devastating fallout here in Ireland.
What Trump has said is that he would allow a one-time repatriation of corporate cash held overseas at a 10 percent tax rate, followed by an end to the deferral of taxes on corporate income earned abroad.
That would seriously reduce the attractiveness of Ireland – and some other countries – for U.S. multinationals. And that is a far bigger worry for us than anything else Trump is saying.