Farmers will look back on 2012 with a shiver – but it wasn't all bad news
Another budget over and another year nearly gone and what have we to show for it? In years to come what will the historians make of 2012? Did anything significant happen? Are we making mistakes which will only be recognised retrospectively when it's too late to correct them?
Hopefully we haven't repeated the blunders such as the benchmarking of 2002 or the bank guarantee of 2008. At best we just muddled along, slowing down the rate of national debt increase.
Katie Taylor, Donegal's footballers, and Rory McIlroy will all look back on 2012 with a warm glow.
Irish farmers will more likely view 2012 with a shiver.
But it wasn't all bad. The first few months were quite promising. Beef and store cattle prices hit new heights. A warm, dry spring saw crops planted in ideal conditions and early grass growth was unprecedented.
"We'll pay for this later," was the common refrain from the naysayers and they were right. The debate continues as to whether 2012 was the worst summer or just one of the worst in recent memory.
Those who espouse the climate change theory will point to multiple global weather occurrences including October's Hurricane Sandy in the US to back their case.
Equally, Ireland continues to be buffeted by the economic storms. We saw little shift in unemployment, property prices, budget deficits.