Happy birthday Bono – and remember Behan was right about the begrudgers

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If I knew Bono I’d wish him a happy 60th birthday today.

Who would have thought it?

Bono, Stevie Wonder and me all in our sixties at the same time. Well, until Wednesday when Stevie turns 70.

The whingers are, of course, out in force telling us how much they despise Bono, how they hate every word he says, his sunglasses, his music and even, this week, his charitable donations. Isn’t it amazing how many of our compatriots, rather than admiring success and wishing to emulate the successful, choose rather to despise and begrudge them?

I made a few enquiries about the €10million U2 spent on PPE for the frontline health workers. And I’m told that Bono not only arranged the money, but made the calls to properly source the equipment.

And the only reason this particularly piece of philanthropy was public was his (vain) hope that other people with a few bob to spare might follow suit.

Anyway, I hope he has a great day.

I like U2. I’ve seen them often. And I’m very proud that one of the biggest, if not the biggest, bands in the world is Irish.

(And having seen Inhaler in Whelan’s, I think we might have a second Hewson up there in the not too distant future.)

Yes, their accountants suggested they move part of their business to the Netherlands – in the same way accountants advised dozens of foreign companies to set up here.

But Bono, Larry, Edge and Adam live here. They pay income tax here. Lots of it. Millions.

They have helped young musicians here.

And…

…look. I’m not going to try and prove their sainthoods.

Let’s just say that four Irish guys worked hard, made it and are still proud of their home, proud enough to live here and not skive off to a tax haven.

So happy birthday Bono.

I’d sing it for you only, well, my music career didn’t last very long.

I was chucked out of pop group when I was 13.

Musical differences.

The difference was, the other lads could actually play their instruments.

I hope Bono has a great day. I never met the man.

But when it comes to the begrudgers, I hope he thinks of Brendan Behan.

Who got them spot on.

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