Playing fair on salaries
Today the Government unveils what is widely expected to be a shock-and-awe Budget. It does so at a time when many people are already battling severe hardship.
We are all too familiar with the black hole in the nation's finances, but the deficit which has not been spoken about in all the frenetic debate is the leadership deficit. So today is also Taoiseach Brian Cowen's final chance to show the people he and his Government are not irredeemably out of touch with the voters.
If the last thing he ever does in high office is address the massive salaries paid to himself, his cabinet, and to the heads of semi-state bodies, and top public servants, then he will have done a good day's work in a period that has been otherwise marked by dismal failures.