Friday 15 December 2017

More austerity is like putting an anorexic on a diet and expecting the body to strengthen

austerity cartoon
austerity cartoon
David McWilliams

David McWilliams

This week 100 years ago, a young Serb was practising his shot in a Bosnian forest. A month later, he would be successful in his murderous mission. John Redmond, the undisputed leader of Nationalist Ireland, had, after an epic parliamentary struggle, just forced through the Government of Ireland Act. Home Rule was here. It had massive public support.

Had anyone suggested that the Irish Parliamentary Party, the dominant force in Irish politics for the previous half century, would disappear over the next few years, that person would have been laughed at.

Had anyone gone on to suggest that the Russian, Austro/Hungarian and Ottoman Empires would also disappear, they'd have been committed. Indeed, had someone suggested that soon Britain would fight Germany and win, but soon after the war victorious Britain would have lost more of its pre-war landmass than defeated Germany, there would have been howls of laughter.

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