My latest contribution to David McWilliams’ Blog…‘I’d like to take issue with the point of view expressed by The Eye
"I don’t agree with David blaming the Gov for our problems, if we are as a people so stupid that we dont know how to vote, we deserve whatever is coming to us ."
This logic generalises the problem and points the finger in every direction. It highlights the extent to which everyone was involved in some way in a culture that turned out to be seriously flawed. It has the benefit of calling on everyone to take responsibility for their decisions and actions.
However, it tends to ignore the reality of power, and the uneven distribution of influence over the organs of state. Our democracy is not a free market. Successive Fianna Fail leaders, Haughey, Reynolds, Ahern and Cowen have used the levers of state to foster a particular system designed to reward their friends.
There has, of course, been a trickle-down effect. The property-less people have experienced some improvement in their standard of living. But the ruling class have experienced fantastic wealth creation. Just look at how the property pages of the newspapers have been used to sustain an atmosphere of collective wanting…
So it’s not fair, or helpful, to blame everyone equally. So many people were manipulated into believing they lived in a system that could enrich them, and enable them to hand on wealth to their children.
When the Taoiseach was prepared to label those who warned of excessive risk-taking as people who should go commit suicide, how can you blame citizens for thinking such a view was respectable and deserving of respect?
In order to help build up some sort of constituency for change, some alliance of fair-minded people prepared to do their best to improve things, I suggest it’s best to hold the unholy alliance of FF government, property developers and bankers responsible for causing Ireland’s crisis.
From such a stance, it should be possible to gather support from, and offer leadership to, people who are understandably confused, angry, betrayed and a lot poorer than they used to think they were.
Maybe I haven’t ;put the case as well as it could be put, but I hope you understand what I’m driving at, and are willing to support this point of view.’