Wednesday 17 January 2018

Report provides us with little more than wisdom of hindsight

A newspaper feature yesterday profiled the case of a Longford man weighed down by negative equity, who has to commute to Galway because he cannot afford to sell his house, and who also carries the burden of two overpriced apartments in Bulgaria.

If Peter Nyberg is right about anything in his report on the banking crash, he is right in saying that an awful lot of people were involved. Including, the report says, the media. It has been observed that there is nothing so fascinating -- and upsetting -- as the sight of one's neighbour getting rich. Naturally, there will be enormous media coverage of such events, some involving bubble blowing.

Newspapers did very well from property advertising during the boom. But some of the most blatant boosting was on television, where the attraction was not advertising, but audience. People were, and are, fascinated by property values. Some programmes of this kind are still on air, and their content is still often dubious.

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