Wednesday 13 December 2017

Old friends are best in times of trouble

Ireland should bring back the punt with the support of sterling or the dollar, writes Frederick Forsyth

THOSE with a strong enough stomach will have for two weeks been watching from afar the writhing death throes of the euro. For dying it indubitably is. But like all great monsters in its last agony, it can still inflict frightening wounds on those in the vicinity.

Is it really three years since a trusting and gullible world -- and forgive me but none was more trusting or gullible than the Irish -- first learned that the 'great and the good' were but greedy incompetents and had been for years? Apparently so. But looking back, it seems an age since we really believed that our politicians, economists and bankers knew what they were doing.

Now we all recognise, too late in our misery, that they had not a clue, save in the expertise of filling their trouser pockets while gambling away all our savings and our futures on insane bets that never came off. Now some of them, the bankers at least, still believe their careers, debts and bonuses should be rescued by yet more gelt from our taxpaying pockets. The impudence is simply breathtaking.

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