What a long strange trip it's been, to quote Jerry Garcia.
It's a good deal, not a great deal. Eamon Dunphy would be proud.
Twenty five years ago we sat down in the Glencree Centre for Reconciliation to draft our core principles. Regardless of whether we're in government or not, they'll still be there as a reference point. I'm not a fan of unrealistic expectations and I'd be the first to admit that we could not deliver our entire manifesto by being in Government. However, on climate change, on housing, on planning and on local government reform I believe we can deliver.
The question for me is this: Would Ireland be a better place in five years time with ourselves in Government than if we stay out? At this stage I believe we can deliver changes that would be visible both locally, and on the international stage. It wouldn't be a marriage made in heaven, but few are these days. And besides, sometimes opposites attract, and maybe a marriage of pragmatism and idealism could last the test of time.
I don't believe that we're 'an opportunistic party seeking to appropriate the Fianna Fáil mandate to impose its faddish obsessions on the country.' as John Waters suggested in a newspaper article a few days ago. I believe we're here for the long haul, and that environmental issues are one of the few genuinely new ideas that have emerged on the political horizon in recent years. Perhaps, after 25 years our times has come.