In the summer when the chickens came home to roost economically the government let it be known that as soon as they came back from holidays it was going to be action and that the slide would be averted by drastic action. So in response they had a cabinet meeting on a Sunday morning and then announced that they would bring forward Budget ’09.
As a precursor the government has sent out warning signals that things will be tough and that nothing will be spared. As part of the whole drive to shock the nation, as if the citizens weren’t aware of the scale of the economic collapse anyway, the government let it be known that the Taoiseach Brian Cowen was going to make a state of the nation address in September.
September came and went and no state of the nation address. True Brian Cowen was on the Late Late Show and got a soft interview from Pat Kenny and seemed to be protected on stage by a praetorian guard of Olympic boxing medalists. But in so far as leveling with the nation and accepting his role and that of his FF/PD government in creating this fiasco not a dickie bird! More curiously the Green Party seem to behave as if they’re members of the Northern Executive and that they can pick and chose the issues they like to support in government. Cabinet collective responsibility seems to have vanished.
Perhaps the cabinet didn’t want to have their broadcast compared to a previous ministerial broadcast by then Taoiseach CJ Haughey where at least he knew what he was talking about when he lectured the people that “we’re all living beyond our means”.
Anyhow, the nearest we got to a state of the nation broadcast was on Wednesday night. Oliver Callan who doubles as Nob Nation on Radio 1 was in Wexford on Wednesday night. View a piece of video of both him and Joe Duffy in the Wicked Swan and you’ll know what I mean. Warning he may have used a rude word or two!