Time for us to develop a healthy lack of deference towards the judiciary
Published 12/11/2015 | 02:30
Deference is unhealthy. Too often it allows the powerful a free pass. The decline of deference in Ireland over recent decades has been a very positive development, ensuring greater scrutiny of more wielders of power and influence.
The abject, if not grovelling, apology issued by a civil servant to the judiciary earlier this week highlighted a significant source of power in the State that is still treated with deference.
Although it is not the place of bureaucrats to criticise judges to lawmakers (the Department of Justice official suggested to an Oireachtas committee that judges didn't take burglaries seriously) the principle that the judiciary should be scrutinised, and criticised when someone believes that is warranted, should be upheld.