Friday 2 December 2016

Elites must lose 'eat cake' attitude

Published 12/02/2012 | 05:00

Not many people know that Marie Antoinette's infamous "let them eat cake" solution was not as unfeeling as it appeared to be.

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Instead her position was actually informed by the curious scenario where, within the separate world of the French royal court, the price of bread was rising but the cost of cake was falling. The source of the trouble with Marie Antoinette, alas, was that peasants, however, eat bread, not cake.

There was certainly more than a touch of the Marie Antoinette surrounding the lectures by Nama boss Frank Daly and Patrick Coveney, chief executive of Greencore, and president at last week's Dublin Chamber of Commerce gala dinner. The event, covered in fawning terms by RTE, was also infused by more than a hint of the bleak denouement of Animal Farm, for right down to the attendees and the 'you never had it so good' sermonising, all that had changed from the time when Mr Cowen used such 'black tie' events to communicate with ordinary citizens, was the identity of the talkers.

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