What would the midlands and a county like Laois be like if it had a Sean Quinn?
Long before the boom the Cavan man was creating employment in his native county and neighbouring counties such as Fermanagh.
A huge number of jobs were created which turned a region around from being a economic blackspot to being a part of the country where people could rear a family.
Sean Quinn could have taken his money and relocated to a flashy office in Dublin. Instead he stayed local. The entrepreneur set up an insurance company and located the headquarters in his own area.
It should be no surprise to anybody that yesterday’s march by thousands of people in Ballyconnell, Co Cavan in support of ‘their man’ against ‘that crowd up in Dublin’.
The peaceful protest,was much a show of loyalty to a man who they believe has done more good than bad down the years.
Last week a judge described as “mesmerisingly complex” a scheme devised Mr Quinn and members of his family to put assets beyond the reach of the former Anglo Irish Bank. Mr Justice Peter Kelly said the scheme was devised “to feather their own nests” and was the largest and most devious seen by the Commercial Court.
The judge, who has presided over the Commercial Court for eight years, also said he had to deal with more cases involving “national and international fraud, sharp practice, chicanery and dishonesty”. However, he had never seen anything like the conduct in this case.
We are all taxpayers bailing out bankrupt banks and we also sympathise with people who are getting a raw deal.
Regardless of past good deeds, perhaps it is time to abandon what now looks like blind loyalty and see the bigger picture.