Tuesday 28 February 2017

Don't rely on our leaders to cut through the fog

Both the Taoiseach and Justice Minister seem inordinately keen for us to forget the whole affair, writes Brendan O'Connor

Brendan O'Connor

Brendan O'Connor

Minister for Justice Alan Shatter
Minister for Justice Alan Shatter

YOU will hear a lot of people giving out about the "scandal of the week" syndrome that Ireland seems to suffer from at the moment. Nearly every week, something seems to bubble up and then bubble down again, or at least go away for a while.

People talk about this cycle as if it was a bad thing. But you could look at this another way, and decide that the flaring up of these scandals is a testament to increased transparency in this country. You could view it too as a symptom that the Government is doing what it should be doing, and dealing with the issues of the day, instead of everyone just obsessing about the economy. You could argue as well that the speed with which things bubble up now is better than the way they would have rumbled on back in the good old days.

The GSOC scandal has moved remarkably fast even by the standards of other recent bubble ups like Irish Water and CRC and the Garda whistleblowers. The story was revealed in the Sunday Times, and then, having stalled initially for a day, followed by some faffing by the Government for another day or two, by Wednesday we got some proper answers in a Dail Committee. It almost felt like openness and democracy. At times.

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