Sunday 19 November 2017

Shane Coleman: Whining Coalition has made itself look spineless – it could learn a lot about authority from Haughey

IT'S time for the Coalition to develop a new narrative. Its old one has become not just tired, but panicky and desperate. The best governments ooze authority. Think back to Haughey and Ray MacSharry in 1987. Its narrative was simple but hugely reassuring for the general public: "There's a crisis. There's somebody in charge. We're going to do what has to be done."

Contrast that with Fine Gael and Labour. Simply saying you want to make Ireland "the best small country in the world in which to do business" doesn't cut the mustard. Far too often the Coalition has given the impression that it isn't calling the shots.

It might be true that it is cleaning up the mess left by the last crowd and that its hands are somewhat tied by the bailout deal. But saying it over and over again doesn't inspire confidence that it has the answers to our many problems. The Government just sounds weak and never more so than in the past few weeks.

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