Taoiseach (Prime Minister) Brian Cowen's speech at the Dublin Chamber of Commerce banquet last week is being hailed as a masterful one, the first time, Irish pundits are saying, that Cowen has ever measured up to the job since he took office. But that's not so. Cowen's speech at the Wall Street 50 event hosted by Irish America magazine and Financial Dynamics last July was a similar tour de force which brought the crowd to its feet. Like in Dublin Cowen spoke without notes and from the heart. He wowed the crowd with a simple yet passionate speech about what the global Irish meant to Ireland and his own experience as an immigrant in New York. It seems Cowen is much better in an off the cuff situation rather than being managed by press aides. The fact that his two most effective speeches since becoming prime minister have come when he threw the script away and went with his heart speaks volumes. With Cowen due back out here for St. Patrick's Day, let's hope he leaves the script doctors behind and delivers his remarks as he likes. President Obama would surely approve.
The Irish pub that became home base for 9/11 ground zero rescuers