Wednesday 21 February 2018

The Yates anthology: Banking Inquiry is an omni-shambles

'The critical questions about relationships between Anglo Irish Bank contacts such as non-executive director Fintan Drury and Mr Cowen, remain unresolved'
'The critical questions about relationships between Anglo Irish Bank contacts such as non-executive director Fintan Drury and Mr Cowen, remain unresolved'
My tip for yellow jersey victory is for Chris Froome (odds 9/4) to recapture 2013 glory, having overcome his last year’s injury problems; his Sky team colleagues should have the strength to see him home
Ivan Yates

Ivan Yates

The banking inquiry is fast becoming an omni-shambles. This week's depressing displays did nothing to lift expectations. In any court forum or tribunal at least there's an opening gambit of accusation by lead prosecution counsel, setting out the book of evidence and charges. But in an inquiry we get an uncontested opening statement by former public servants and politicians, allowing them to self-proclaim their own absolution. We then endure a lamentable litany seeking to escape personal culpability.

The nadir came at lunchtime on Thursday, when RTÉ's most senior political correspondent described Brian Cowen's contribution as a "bravura performance - with aplomb".

I don't think the Leinster House/media bubble quite gets it. Lest anyone forgets: 330,000 lost their jobs; 40,000 businesses disappeared from the company register; 250,000 emigrated; property values on average halved; indigenous banks were insolvent; national debt leaped by a multiple of five - leaving an entire generation of taxpayers to repay €205 billion.

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