11/29/2009 12:48 PM
Bertie Ahern was in Dubai last week for a meeting of the World Economic Forum.
So what, says you.
Well the same man who helped create the smoke and mirrors fiasco of the so-called Celtic Tiger pronounced Dubai "an extraordinary success," a mere FOUR days before Dubai announced it was on the brink of collapse with record €36bn ($54bn) debt.
Ahern's full quote - which will surely haunt him for the rest of his life courtesy of YouTube - is: "Dubai, more than anywhere, has strategic vision, planning of key objectives and making them a reality and becoming a central hub of this whole region.
"It has done that to extraordinary success. In these tough economic times Dubai is doing better than anyone else. My congratulations to them."
And don't just take my word for it. Click on the link to actually hear Ahern opine so optimistically about Dubai.
Of course, these rose-tinted glasses aren't a new accessory for "Anorak Man."
The former Irish Prime Minister assiduously refused to see that the "Celtic Tiger" was a Celtic Crapshoot.
As Taoiseach, or prime minister, Ahern presided over the fake boom in Ireland from 1997 to 2008 and before that he was the finance minister.
He, more than anyone else, bears a huge responsibility for the state Ireland is in.
Thousands of people are losing their jobs or watching their pay die from a thousand cuts, 40,000 are expected to emigrate over the next 12 months, and tens of thousands are marooned in houses they will never be able to pay for.
And it's all down to the same cocktail of lunatic economics which burst the Dubai balloon. Or, as the Mail on Sunday described Dubai, "a flamboyant economic model that is centered on foreign capital and giant cosntruction projects."
Just yesterday, the New York Times wrote off Ireland's economic prospects saying it "was struggling with the consequences of a devastating real estate collapse."
No wonder Ahern couldn't see where Dubai was going. He couldn't see where Ireland was going although the dogs in the street could have told him that there was something very wrong with the Irish economy when a so-so bungalow in a rough area of Dublin cost twice as much as a mansion in Scarsdale.
Of course, the real pity of it all is that the ordinary people of Ireland are paying for the flamboyant policies that have driven Ireland to its worst economic crisis ever.
They're under water in more ways than one thanks to Ahern and his cronies.