On the 90th anniversary of the first Dail it may be a time to reflect and value the benefits of having a free and open society. It may also be a time to take a look at who are these people that we are always complaining about and blaming for all our misfortunes.
In a free democratic society such as ours, the Government is just a reflection of us. We who exercised our voting rights all had an input into who represents us and if we are having a problem with their actions, it may be time to exercise this right again and put in place new people, who will reflect where we as a nation want to go now.
A common argument in the past two elections is “we were bought”. On reflection of this it may be more honest to say, “we choose to be bought”. Who in their right mind was going to put in power a Government that was going to stop or control the party we were having? The party is now very much over and we have to bear the pain of the hangover.
We are now also blaming the loose lending policies of the banks. Throughout the most of banking history the complaint was how difficult it is to get money from banks and if we could only get the money what a return we would make. Well we got the money with very few questions asked and we blew it on overpriced property and on consumer goods. Sadly, this is probably the last time for a few generations that such easy credit will be available. Why? Because the vast majority do not know how to use credit so the people most likely to get it in the future are the people that can.
So the moral of the above few paragraphs is simple. TAKE RESPONSIBILITY for your own actions. We were more than happy to take credit for all our Celtic Tiger Successes. It is now time to decide if we want a free and open society where anyone with the desire to succeed can, or go back to a society of being told what to do and be provide for by a crony corrupt over-sized government.
So if we chose the free open society where do we go from here? Some of the complaints we now have about this government are very real. While the majority of people are big enough to say they made poor decisions and are willing to take the pain, it is out of order that the sales people of the scheme i.e. the Government and the bank get off with Golden Parachutes. We must also not accept Local Authorities buying housing from their developer friends for 2007 prices. These are just some of the reflection that we may not like about ourselves.
We must accept quickly that we had a property bubble that is now deflating but not yet burst. Commercial property and housing must correct quickly like the stock market, which is now free to rise if we can show that we are a nation worth investing in. We need to lay down a marker than the New Ireland is not a place that accepts and reward corrupt salespeople and unethical business managers. We must value that we are a hard working productive society and take our learning from the tiger years and produce real economic growth. If we continue to deny reality we will quickly have a brain and body drain to Australia, Canada and the rest of the world.
Individually we need to take responsibility for all the decision we made. We as a nation have milked the last out of the “being oppressed for 800 years” story. Our government is just a reflection of the people it represents. If you don’t like their action, first look at yourself and then at the people around you. We hired them and we can fire them so forget the “we were fooled” rhetoric. Identify the direction you want to go or look for and support a leader with that vision. The majority of us are led by a few. Hopefully there is a visionary out there than can bring together a team to bring our nation to the next growth phase.
Vincent O Connell