Looking at the Late Late doing one of those panels that were so much part of the dark days of 1980s it struck me that as a nation we are a drunk who blames a step he wasn’t expecting for the fall that smashed his face in. And our automatic response appears to be to call one of those numbers about if we’d had a fall or trip at work to get compensation of our situation. It’s because we were drunk on property that the step, whether you say that step was Lehman Bros., or Bear Stearns (we remembers them now!), banks existing on the overnight markets or the problems of sub-prime lending more generally. The plain fact is we were bound to hit something at some point, and we were simply weren’t prepared to deal with it. Because our government chose not to bother and the electorate rewarded them for not doing so. You get votes for opening facilities not for providing the funding to use them.
Ger Colleran alluded to it at one point but none of the others really picked up on it, we’re at a Weimar moment in Irish history. Either we find a way or a way will find us, it won’t be fascism as people know it but it will be more restrictive and brutish and nasty. That brutish, nasty, me first mentality is already out there. It was part of the 80s culture of getting ahead (that means leave others behind) and it’s lauded even now when it hides in plain view by proclaiming itself as being about straight talking but which it isn’t. It’s about shouting down others, while taking up one’s self.
And all the while the Irish body politic is stumbling around holding its bloodied face, and pointing and railing at the step for being there. And probably blaming the council for putting it there…right outside our own door…on our property.