Thursday 24 August 2017

Appleby and the public service must be held accountable

There are many lessons to be learnt from the FitzPatrick trial, but public service accountability must come first, writes Sarah Carey

Paul Appleby. Photo: Damien Eagers
Paul Appleby. Photo: Damien Eagers
Sarah Carey

Sarah Carey

The centre must hold! That's what they say and that's what I preach when the threat of mere anarchy is let loose upon the world. And sure enough, despite all that has been thrown at us, there have been sufficient numbers of Irish voters with a French sense of responsibility to maintain - just about - mainstream political parties.

The disasters of Trump and Brexit have proved that populists who win have been exposed as the charlatans many of us knew them to be, and that anarchism is no solution to anything. But after a week like last week, I wonder, almost in amazement, how the middle ground has been maintained.

The incredulity that Sean FitzPatrick was guilty of nothing was only one of several talking points in the news. The discovery of incompetence in the Office of the Director of Corporate Enforcement, just as negotiations on public sector pay opened, inflicted a severe blow on the idea that the establishment is capable of delivering, not merely economic recovery, but the promise that the insanity of the bust could not be repeated.

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