No kidding: Paddies will be fine if the Brits leave the EU
"Fair play with the 'plastic Paddy' shtick, Liam, but you're talking out of your hole." So shouted a heckler at the Kilkenomics Festival - his words directed at me.
Up on stage in the Marble City's bijoux Set Theatre, I was on a panel discussing the possible implications of 'Brexit' for Ireland, the sell-out event combining economics with riotous comedy. The show-cased 'experts' were dealing with a technical, highly emotive subject: just how will Ireland fare if its biggest trading partner votes to quit the European Union?
The atmosphere was gladiatorial - this was one theatre audience not waiting for the interval to get a drink. Facing the rhetorical firepower not just of a rowdy 300-plus crowd but our moderator, comedian Des Bishop, the glib, fence-sitting answers economists usually offer were brutally, often hilariously, exposed.