We need a lion, not a lamb, to fight our cause
Instead of playing ball, we should take our cue from Greece and give Europe a reason to fear us, writes Brendan O'Connor
Just how stupid does Michael Noonan think we are? As he whimpered home with his tail between his legs last week from his latest Euro-battering on the sub-prime interest rates we are charged on our so-called bailout, he actually tried to make us believe that he had won. He created a wasteland and called it victory.
In the Dail on Tuesday, Noonan was talking tough on Europe, blustering that he would "not be waltzed around by any other member state". He went on to say that there is "no way [he] will negotiate with anyone in the French government to concede anything on the Irish corporation tax rate."
By the tone of Noonan's remarks you would imagine he had got one over on the French, that he had told them what was what and they had crumbled. But of course the reality is that all Noonan was saying, with so much bluster, was that he had lost, that we weren't getting any reduction in our punitive interest rate, that we will continue to pay a higher rate than Greece -- a complete basketcase that is doing nothing to play along with the programme. What Noonan was actually telling us was: the French won, I came away with nothing; I gave up.