Wednesday 20 September 2017

The Yates anthology: Spin is no substitute for good governance

'Ministers berated banks, the top brass were summoned to Merrion Street (pictured) and the Central Bank governor was instructed to report and act' Photo: Getty
'Ministers berated banks, the top brass were summoned to Merrion Street (pictured) and the Central Bank governor was instructed to report and act' Photo: Getty
Ivan Yates

Ivan Yates

It's happened by stealth, beginning with each minister having a coterie of appointees. Then there was the State funding of political parties. This paved the way for the arrival of the dozens of apparatchiks to occupy Government Buildings, and Leinster House to manage their bosses' public relations. Spin doctors cost taxpayers many millions. They must justify their existence.

Serious issues are responded to as PR problems, rather than real-life concerns that need to be resolved, not deflected. The news cycle is managed and strategised in succession accordingly.

First, there is the acknowledgement "listening" phase.

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