Martina Devlin: Frozen out - How our children feel the real chill of recession
Lately, I've been studying TDs and senators in Leinster House, and I'm struck by one fact: not a pair of gloves, a woolly hat or an overcoat in sight. None of them sits in the chambers with their teeth chattering.
Nor should they. But compare this with a primary school a few miles away, in Dublin's Bluebell area, where the head teacher says pupils are now wearing their coats during lessons because the school can't afford to service its fitful boiler.
What does this tell us about the state of the nation, in advance of a savage Budget next week? Are we still meant to believe we're all in this together?