Clearly any contributor to a discussion such as this should be mindful that apart from the merits or other of Mr Lawlor, he was nonetheless somebodyÂ´s father, and somebodyÂ´s husband. So in opening this debate I request that at this time writers refrain from any comment derogative simply for the sake of it. That said, I put it to others that now it is most pertinent that his actions and business-political relationships, both suspected and proven be discussed.
As much as in his life, Mr Lawlors death is in some ways unbelievable. Given the parallels between the circumstances of his death, and those of the death of Diana Spencer in 1998, it is reasonable to say that it is likely that various conspiracy theories will start popping up. No doubt these will be fuelled by the repeated refusals by Mr Lawlor to positively assist the work of the planning tribunal; as to what he knew, who he may have been covering for, and ultimately how much was/ is at stake in terms of acres of lands rezoned in South County Dublin and such like. RIP Mr Lawlor, it is of regret that he could not have been more helpful to the tribunal and other investigations while he was still alive.
- Senior Member
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Having said that, there can be little doubt that he was consistently involved in dealings that could be described, at best, as less than clear- dealings that cast a long shadow over the planning system and may continue to do so for some time to come. If any good comes from it, it could be that in the long run the role of councillors and TDs in the planning system is scaled back, with the associated parish pump clientilism we all know exists. Not necessarily what he would have wanted, perhaps, but ultimately for the better.
Concerning the crash, he wouldn't be the first public figure (should rumours be true) to seek solace, from the loneliness of long nights and unfamiliar cities, in the arms of a local comely maiden. It has no bearing on his past as a politician, or on the points that could be debated on a forum such as this.
The great tragedy, apart from the loss for his family, is the effects it could well have on the future of the tribunal. After 8 years, the thought of not getting a result is difficult to entertain- and I don't just mean in relation to LL himself. It will be interesting to see how many of those under scrutiny use this as a screen behind which to hide in the future proceedings. I feel it is probably too much to hope that it clears blockages in the consciences of the same people, but I never give up hope.
- Old Master
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Yes the impact of his loss on Mahon may well be significant, both in terms of his own potential contributions, and others' ability to now hide behind his buried information.
If there is one positive thing to be said about the man and his dealings with the Tribunal, it is his most amiable dealings with the media during his time there. Never one to dash into a blackened car, he seemed to almost enjoy the attention strolling across the Lower Yard every morning and evening, often replying to questions asked - likewise on various programmes.
For all that can be said about Mr Lawlor, the sly CJ ducking and diving method just wasn't his style - not outside the tribunal stand at least
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