Friday 24 February 2017

Hey everyone, it's the Lisbon Treaty all over again -- only with added menace

We need public debate and to think for ourselves, not platitudes as we cede more power to Brussels, says Eilis O'Hanlon

LISTENING to Brian Lenihan reassure us last week that Ireland has suffered no loss of sovereignty as a result of our financial woes was a bit like hearing doctors tell a man who's just had his conkers chopped off that he's suffered no loss of virility.

Our version of Lorena Bobbit is Finnish-born bean counter Olli Rehn, EU commissioner for economic and monetary affairs, who spent part of the week holed up in Dublin telling politicians, bankers, journalists, business leaders, trade unionists, and anyone else who'd listen, exactly what the gauleiters in Europe expected the Irish to do in the Budget, whether we like it or not.

Rehn also laid out his own ambition that having Europe peep over the Irish Government's shoulder as it makes financial decisions should be a permanent order of the day, even once this particular crisis is under control. A state of affairs which, unless our capital has secretly been switched to Brussels or Helsinki, surely represents a loss of sovereignty in most people's eyes.

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