Friday 17 November 2017

We know we have to pay – so stop giving half answers to our queries

John Downing
John Downing

Elections are about giving. The clawbacks, the snags, the problems are for later. The examples are too numerous to mention. Enda Kenny's own first election to the Dail, in a by-election in November 1975, was helped by timely payment of Ireland's first-ever EU farm grants. From the other side of the house, in April 2002, the Fianna Fail-Progressive Democrat government paid out big child benefit increases and arrears ahead of a general election on May 17, 2002.

Any experienced politician will tell you that nothing succeeds like a bit of old-fashioned bribery matched by judicious time management of the bad news.

So, should anyone be surprised to read in this newspaper again today that the Fine Gael-Labour Coalition is delaying details of the water charges that will hit us from next autumn onwards?

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