Ireland Callingby John Spain
- "Greed is good", especially in Ireland it seems with pillars of society on the take
- Vintage pamphlets offer a glimpse at the rules of 50s-era Irish Catholicism
- A leap of faith by Ireland, the exit from the IMF/EU bailout
- A temporary detour from ecomic issues to Irish soccer madness
- Give Britain a break after decades of Irish emigration to the UK
A week is a long time in politics, as Tip O'Neill once said. I wonder what that wise old head would have thought of the shenanigans in Irish politics over the past week.
More than likely he would have been appalled and saddened in equal measure, which is how all of us here have felt.
Talk about fiddling while Rome burns! Fianna Fail are worse than the ancient Romans ever were.
On paper this country is almost bankrupt. We face an enormous challenge to avoid that paper bankruptcy becoming a tangible reality. We don't have any time to lose in the battle to retain our economic independence.
And what have the senior members of the government here been doing for the past week? Squabbling over whether Taoiseach (Prime Minister) Brian Cowen should remain as Fianna Fail leader, that's what.
So here we are in the economic basket case they call Ireland, the old horrible year well and truly over and a new annuls horribly just beginning.
The reality is that the year that stretches ahead of us is going to be even more grim than the one behind us.
As the brief Christmas cheer recedes and the feel-good factor of the holiday evaporates, we are left to contemplate the sorry mess we are in.