Yes, we are now in the Post Celtic Tiger (PCT) era. So what has changed? There are some good things like cheaper meals out and the promise that people will be nicer to each other. Time will tell. There are also many bad things, collapsing banks, rising unemployment, too many horror movies and the baffling popularity of Ryan Tubridy. What can ever save us? What about that gaggle of geese known as Irish politicians? Can we rely on our fearless leaders in this time of crisis?
But how do you pick one to ‘lead the way’? If this was a date I’d like to find out more about you before I asked you home. The way things are going it could be just as reasonable to suggest a lottery as a valid way if we judge the quality of the recent slew of radio and television ‘debate’ ( note I use the word reluctantly).
Listening to Irish political debate is like prodding a back of amphetaminized cats except the screetches and cries make less sense. We have FF, FG and Labour, Sinn Fein (God help us) and Libertas (whatever they are), Oh and the Greens. The Greens are doing more to aid the advance of global warming and indifference to our planet than the guys who do the hip-hop ads for Mickey D’s. Disaster. As an aside I don’t think there should be a Green Party in the first place – all government should be Green from the get-go.
Anyway, if you are looking for sensible, measured debate, go elsewhere. I was so confused after a debate with Libertas on the Pat Kenny show a few weeks ago, that I ended up concluding that they may be the saviours of modern Ireland because the sheer amount of mud that was slung in their direction by every other party meant that by default I was impressed by them. This is bad. They look like the poster boys and gals of the new children of the damned. Unfortunately, maybe a shiny-happy-neo-right-wing-agenda would fit in nicely with the new Ireland’s materialistic solipsism? The rise of fascism is often associated with the cycle of a comfortable society, that descends into chaos necessitating the need for a strong leader to rise out of the ashes. We may not be in the ashes just yet but the loud voices scrambling for attention out of the blocks, may make you think otherwise.
Eitherway, we certainly need to move past superficialities, and mere local interest. Hunger whether spiritual or material will focus the attention. Yes, we need debate but we must give each other room to breath, think, measure and interact – not shout each other down. Lest only the loudest voice be heard, and we march to the beat of the loudest drum.. or else.