It was very encouraging and I intend to reflect upon when I have more energy. But it seemed to address the frustration I felt at the political process by people almost everywhere in the west. Some of Dr Blond's observations were scary - that there would be a Front National President in France within ten years for example. Then given the performance of Francois Hollande, I would hardly be surprised. Certainly the heavy handed way he used the riot police against those who demonstrated against same sex marriage has politicised a new generation in France. France is far from unique in the west.
The January-February Brandsma Review will feature an article by Monika Barget on the Alternativ für Deutschland, the new political initiative in Germany. The gathering in Dublin's Davenport Hotel suggested an appetite for a new group in Ireland. Nor was this confined to the crowd of good people who attended. A number of ex-members of the Fine Gael parliamentary party were there: Peter Mathews, Terence Flanagan and Senator Fidelma Healy-Eames. Senator Ronan Mullen was also there, with the Irish Times columnist John Waters. I was disappointed to miss John Waters, but I talked to Senators Mullen and Healy Eames and to former leader of the Christian Solidarity Party, Dr Gerard Casey.
So there is sign of hope in Ireland. Just watch this space.