Eoghan Harris: Hubris haunts all heads of state at some time or other
Published 03/04/2011 | 05:00
AS we have a new Government and a new Opposition, we are still looking for character clues. But three recent issues -- the banks, Moriarty and Libya -- show us the shape of things to come. Already four of my predictions are coming true.
First, Fine Gael's failure to govern as a minority (Fianna Fail would not dare pull the plug for at least four years), Labour's lazy decision to dine out on the spoils of office and Fianna Fail's failure to find a voice -- all this has left the Dail dangerously unbalanced and opened up a major opportunity for Sinn Fein.
Second, the Government's huge majority has not given it the courage to make hard choices. The biggest choice is whether to freeze pay and pensions in the fatter parts of the public sector until there is parity with the private sector, or place further tax burdens on the back of the private sector -- which will stifle the growth which can alone get us out of this grim hole.