Tuesday 17 January 2017

Praise of Ahern's failed politics

Published 03/01/2011 | 05:00

Reading Bertie Ahern's departure speech along with Brian Cowen's tribute, I am disappointed but not surprised to see both politicians yet again revert to their dream histories, rather than confront the realities of their disastrous administrations.

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In his curiously distant tribute -- cordial rather than enthusiastic -- Mr Cowen describes Mr Ahern as the "consummate politician of his generation". If you take Tammany Hall as your model, yes, Bertie was a great politician.

By his own admission, he appointed his cronies to state boards simply because they were friends of his -- the result was economic basket cases like the Dublin Docklands Development Authority, FAS and the Central Bank.

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