Alan Shatter reads out ‘fake news’ poem on Claire Byrne show

Former minister for justice pens critique of Donald Trump era

Former Fine Gael minister for justice Alan Shatter surprised the audience of the RTÉ Claire Byrne Live television show on Monday night when he recited a poem.

His poem, Confusion, was a short take on the era of fake news and US president Donald Trump. He apologised to the audience before reading out the poem.

“The news is confused, nothing is quite right, alternative facts, newsreader contrite. Different versions of events portrayed, in the post truth age,” Mr Shatter read.

“Black is white, good is bad, the rain is dry, happy is sad. Newspeak triumphant, love is hate, words no longer matter, with this linguistic update,” he said.


“The world is flat, the moon is cheese, just lie back and enjoy the breeze. For very few care about what is said, remember that ultimately, we will all be dead.”

The former front-bench Fine Gael TD lost his Dublin-Rathdown seat in the 2016 general election, with his party running mate Josepha Madigan securing a seat.

Mr Shatter was beaten to the fourth seat in the constituency by Green Party deputy leader Catherine Martin.

The Guerin report on the official response to allegations from Garda whistleblower Sgt Maurice McCabe led to Mr Shatter’s resignation in May 2014, after he was told then taoiseach Enda Kenny would not be able to express confidence in him in the Dáil.

The report found Mr Shatter did not properly heed warnings of malpractice within An Garda Síochána.

However, a statutory inquiry later found that Mr Shatter had responded appropriately to the claims.

Jack Power

Jack Power

Jack Power is acting Europe Correspondent of The Irish Times