With a new year about to begin, it's time to consider renewal.
Time has a way of erasing a multitude of sins. The days go by and memories fade, and then one day you find yourself miles from where you started. It's like being reborn, as if the past never happened.
The New Year is around the corner. A time of new beginnings and renewals is at hand.
Or, if you're Dessie Ellis, a time to remember those things once forgotten is at hand.
The former volunteer in the Irish Republican Army has been reminded that the British authorities once linked him to fifty killings during The Troubles.
He left his past behind and came to fashion himself as an elected representative from Dublin North-West, a dedicated member of Sinn Fein who once served a sentence for possession of explosive material.
The area he represents is clearly not troubled by the part of his past that clung to Mr. Ellis, or they never would have voted for him. In many parts of Ireland, being an anti-Treaty advocate is a positive thing, even if that Treaty was signed back in 1921.
The partition of Ireland has not yet been relegated to the forgotten past, not will it be any time soon.
When asked, Mr. Ellis declined to comment on recently released reports that painted him as a cold-blooded killer. As would any dedicated nationalist, he scoffs at anything the Brits claim as fact.
A new year, a new beginning.
The accusations will be flung at Mr. Ellis during debates in the Dail, used as a weapon to silence him when he stirs up trouble for Fine Gael. Those opposed to all things Sinn Fein (their socialist policies are hopelessly mired in the past, as if the Soviet Union never fell apart under the weight of it) will cry out against such as Mr. Ellis sitting in the Dail, but those who see Mr. Ellis as a hero, a man of action even if that action was morally wrong, will be quick to vote for him again when next given a chance.
The debates will continue, the latest revelation will fade into the past from whence it came, and the economy will flounder and shudder through another year of austerity and budget cuts, higher taxes and stagnant unemployment.
Some things just won't be changing in the New Year.