Saturday 3 December 2016

Kevin Myers: More subsidised companies likely to fail as fangs of reality bite

Published 17/06/2011 | 05:00

As we clear up the ruins of the Celtic Tiger, is it remotely possible we'll begin to conduct some post-mortems into how we got so many things wrong? We need to realise this now, while the corpse stiffens before our eyes, and learn our lessons: otherwise, given the chance again, our politicians will inevitably go down the same route, performing the same mistakes and killing another generation of golden opportunities.

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Look at the wretched picture of Galway Airport, now pleading to be rescued from imminent bankruptcy by the State -- the very organisation that helped place it on the precipice in the first place. Galway Airport is the love child of the sentimentalised politics of independence and the rip-roaring tearaway Playboy of the Western World that was the Celtic Tiger.

It is hard to diagnose any real commercial logic in our airport policy -- this is because there was none. Airports were plonked by different govern-ments wherever they might win votes, regardless of actual need. Thus a relatively small area on the western seaboard, with a low population, got three "commercial" airports: Knock, Galway and Sligo.

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