Last week, the Fine Gael Government, defying its own traditions, took two decisions that threw small and medium enterprises to the wolves.
First, it continued the lockdown that is choking private sector firms.
Second, it distracted from its lethal decision to dump vulnerable patients in private nursing homes by attacking their profits.
Behind these decisions lies a dysfunctional culture of public sectorism and, in RTE, a barely concealed contempt for the private sector's profit motive.
That cultural snobbery surfaced twice last Tuesday: on RTE's Morning Ireland, and in Fine Gael TD Fergus O'Dowd's combative submission on nursing homes to the Oireachtas Committee on Covid-19.
Let me start with a reality check. The private sector creates all our wealth.
The private sector has 1.5 million workers. Most of them, 65pc, are employed by small or medium enterprises. Like private nursing homes.
This SME sector pays the wages and pensions of 450,000 public sector workers (half retirees) although mostly pension-less itself. The SMEs are the donkeys of the Irish economy, deprived of the superior conditions of the public sector they carry on their breaking backs.
Yes, many in the public sector do a good job. Most of them are nice, educated people. But it's easy to be nice when you can't be fired.
But I have never met a public sector employee who can empathise with the private sector, or connect their own good fortune with the lack of it in others.
We are all products of our material circumstances. Not being a hypocrite, I freely admit that when I worked in RTE, I shared the general view we were a cut above independent film makers.
But a move to the private sector and the collapse of communism cured me of the delusion that a minority have a right to ride on the back of the private sector donkey without showing at least some respect.
Furthermore, the public sector is no protector of freedom. If RTE had the last word, my voice would never be heard. My freedom of speech comes courtesy of a private sector company.
I believe our public sector culture caused the greatest economic error of our era - the long lockdown which has dealt a deadly blow to roughly a third of Irish SMEs - who employ over a million workers.
It also led to the lethal neglect of our private nursing homes and well over half of all Covid-19 deaths.
In proof of all the above assertions, let me take you back to last Tuesday, when Tadhg Daly, who represents Nursing Homes Ireland, was due to appear at the Oireachtas Committee dealing with Covid-19.
A few hours before, Audrey Carville gave Daly a public sector baptism of fire on Morning Ireland.
Carville tore into Daly about the profits of private nursing homes, "owned by multi-million euro investment funds which make millions of euro in turnover".
But this was flak, not fact. Daly reminded her that 65pc of the private nursing homes are family owned and classified as SMEs.
Carville's raw response revealed RTE's cosy public sector culture. "But they're for profit, they're for profit!" she cried.
Let me give Carville two reality checks. First, we are not North Korea but a free enterprise economy. Second, private sector profits help pay public sector salaries.
But Carville's sniffing at the base profit motive was only a prelude to Fergus O'Dowd's similar follow-up at the Oireachtas Committee on Covid-19.
O'Dowd set out to robustly play down the submission of Tadhg Daly, of Nursing Homes Ireland, based on letters between the Department of Health and Nursing Homes Ireland.
Daly's work was made more difficult because the Department of Health only got around to releasing the letters an hour-and-a-half before the hearing.
Furthermore, Fergus O'Dowd seemed to have clairvoyant powers about the correspondence.
Bristling visibly, he took the same adversarial approach to Daly as Audrey Carville had done.
He even echoed her problem with profit, stressing that NHI had "very wealthy business men and business women" as directors.
But Daly had a better case. The State had sent vulnerable elderly people out of State care homes into private nursing homes without PPE - at the same time sucking staff out of them with higher wages.
Furthermore, the State could not pretend what happened in private nursing homes was not its concern.
Rather than take on the burden, the State outsources 80pc of the care of the elderly to private nursing homes under the Fair Deal scheme.
By doing so they save taxpayers a packet. State nursing homes cost an average €1,615 per week. Private nursing homes are nearly half that at €915.
But to the credit of private nursing homes, although starved of staff and PPE, some four out of five residents recovered from Covid-19.
Later last Tuesday, under pressure from Miriam O'Callaghan about a HIQA list of 200 nursing homes at risk sent to his department, Simon Harris asked her to remember that NHI represented the "owners" of private nursing homes.
The sight of Fine Gael politicians putting clouds over SME "owners" is a regression to De Valera's statist protectionism.
As a result, a triad of public sector figures are deciding on how long a lockdown should last for, a private sector for which they clearly lack any cultural sympathy.
First, a group of Fine Gael politicians, all of them permanent and pensionable, who haven't followed New Zealand's Jacinda Ardern example and taken a pay cut.
Second, Nphet, a 32-member group of handsomely paid public service medical experts and officials, but no private sector representative.
Finally, RTE, the State broadcaster, cheerleads the Government's policy in continuing a lockdown which is choking our fragile private sector.
These three pillars of State power have created a corporate State culture that cossets the minority public sector while marginalising the majority private sector.
Can we see any chink of light where a pensionless private sector carries a cosy public sector - which perversely seems intent on killing the battered goose that lays its golden eggs?
Thankfully, yes. Micheal Martin, of Fianna Fail, and Alan Kelly, of Labour, have been looking out for the small firms that employ a million workers.
Robert Troy (FF) has been campaigning for greater restart grants and insurance cover for small businesses with their backs to the wall.
Jim O'Callaghan joined him last week in calling on Leo Varadkar to stop listening exclusively to the most conservative medical voices, and get our country back to work.
The Oireachtas Covid-19 Committee has a crucial role to play in challenging conventional wisdoms of the Continue Cocooners.
So far, ably chaired by Michael McNamara, a calm figure who discourages grandstanding from members, it has subtly widened the public discourse and done the State some service.