independent

Thursday 17 April 2014

Time for unity, not petty squabbling

IT is time we toned down the strident and seemingly endless public squabbling about the roots of our economic problems. It is time the people of Ireland made a collective decision to stop beating our breasts and move forward together.

The tone of the national conversation about the banks and the budgetary deficit, in particular, has been shrill, repetitive and contradictory.

The Irish Independent challenges the value of such shambolic and hysterical debate. We have heard all the recriminations and all the theories about alternative strategies and we are not impressed.

Such is the depth of the country's problems that action is what is required, not anger. As the Finance Minister has observed, anger is not a policy.

Yet, day after day, on the airwaves, we hear celebrity economists offering contradictory opinions on government strategy.

We hear Brian Lenihan explain for the thousandth time that a default on senior debt would be catastrophic for the country, only to be asked: "Tell us again, minister, why can't we just let Anglo go?"

The minister has consistently invited rational debate but, particularly on TV and radio, the debate is frequently distorted by commentators and interviewers who look and sound authoritative, but whose grasp of the country's economic problems, not to mention its sovereign responsibilities, is deficient.

For two years now, it seems we have been agonising over the events and actions that got us to where we are.

Surely, by now, we understand what happened?



Irish Independent

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