Mirror Mirror on the Wall, Who is the Sorriest of All?

brian cowen sorry for economic collapseNo one more sorry than I about what happened,’ says Cowen .

I have never met Brian Cowen.

The closest I came was twice, once when I saw him and some others in a hotel near the Dáil and the other time when a mutual acquaintance with whom he had been in school stood me up for a beer in favour of the then Deputy.  I am sure and am assured that he is a decent chap, and one who has as much empathy as any other. This can only be highlighted witnessing the shambles that society has entered into.  I believe him when he says that the actions, ultimately disastrous as they were and serially incredible as they seemed even at the time, were taken by him and his cabinet for the best of intentions. Alas, not just the road to Clara and political ignominy is paved with good intentions.

That said, it seems to me to degrade language for him, in his present circumstances of a 140k per annum pension, to say he is the sorriest of all.  A partial list of people whom one might think are more sorry than he for the economic collapse might include

  • the nearly 400,000 people who have emigrated since the start of 2009
  • the nearly 200,000 people who have not emigrated but who as of July 2013 were more than one year on the live register.
  • the residents of Priory Hall left in the lurch by state, court and society but who are being hounded for payment by the banks they saved
  • the residents of poxy pyrite mansions dotted round the country who have been left in the lurch by insurers, Homebond, the state and the legal system
  • the 77,000 people who saw their respite care grant cut.
  • economists in banks who ramped the system
  • economists in universities who could have, but didn’t, shout stop earlier or at all
  • the 50 or so FF TDs who lost their jobs in 2011
  • The 30 plus Labour TDs not in cabinet who now face the electoral whirlwind in 2014

One could go on.

This is not an Anti FF post. It is anti a style of political rhetoric which thinks a half-baked apology en grudge served on a bed of self-justification with a glass of crocodile tears is enough. Far better to respond to all media with ” I am retired from politics.  What we did we did for what we thought then were the right decisions. Of course I regret any pain and suffering my and others actions caused. Thank you”. Simple, dignified, and accurate. Engaging in competitive misery from a well paid retirement is none of the above.


This article also appears on Brian Lucey’s website here.

10 thoughts on “Mirror Mirror on the Wall, Who is the Sorriest of All?

  1. Hello all, I believe he is sorry to have been exposed as an incompetent.
    As finance minister, it was his hand on the tiller, he was supposed to know what was going on in the banking sector. Not just within this country, but with an eye on what others were doing so as to best guide the economy for Ireland. That was his job, that’s what he was handsomely paid to do. He didn’t do it. If he wasn’t able enough, why take the post?

    Perhaps a truer apology Might read;

    I’m sorry for taking the job, I was seriously out of my depth. There was shedloads of cash everywhere, I didn’t fully understand where it came from, and I didn’t really care. In retrospect I should have overseen and regulated our Banking sector. I should have employed able advisors to inform me of what was happening on the international scene. I regret this did not make this happen. For my incompetence and poor management, I offer my apologies to the people of Ireland and their descendants for the poorer quality of life some must lead because of my ignorance.

    The actions of people like this have destroyed lives, and in my opinion his apology is nowhere near enough. He makes a balls of a seriously important job, and then fucks off with a pension! He should be kept working, same as many others who will have to do so now. Find out what he’s good at, and make him work on to 70, make the fucker earn his pension.
    After all, that is what is expected of you and I.

  2. Nobody takes anything he says seriously. Cowen, Ahern and Lenihan are all tainted by the actions of their appalling government and they always will be.

  3. For that kind of a pension I’d wear a feckin’ placard round me neck announcing to all and sundry how “Sorry” I was for shafting them.Its always amazing how we reward failure in this country. The whole situation, as it stands, makes me feel “Sorry” I can’t emigrate.

  4. from 1984 to 2011 just 27 years, yet with a pension of 130,000 a year for the rest of his life.
    he was 51 when he retired so if he was to have funded this amount himself I would guess it would have cost more than he has ever earned.
    but not to worry the disabled an special need can fund it.
    If he really wants to show he is sorry hand back the pension and get a job.
    A job not funded by the public.

  5. I nearly killed Brian Cowen around 1999 in a hotel in Tullamore. I was working as a roadie for a band at the time not long after finishing school and wasn’t that strong. I was dropping down a set of lights on a stand beside the stage and they began to wobble forward into the crowd. I hadn’t the strength to stop them from crashing forward but one of the lads was passing, saw me struggling and caught it before it came down on the the back of Cowens head.

    Needless to say i got a good bollocking and pulling down the lights was a two man job for a few weeks til I built up the arms. I’m not sure where he was in the gov that time but the lads knew who was.

    The best of it was he never even noticed what happened, probably full of porter.

  6. I agree with nearly of the sentiments here, BUT look at the system that allowed this to happen, and, more importantly, the electorate that voted for these cowboys, and KEPT voting for them happily!

    Masochism? Stupidity?

    I think what happened is a consequence of how the majority of Irish people perceived poltiics – and probably still do!

    Maybe next time it could be better? Although we APPEAR to have a more competent government, I get no sense that the Irish electorate have matured; we still have the same misplaced sense of entitlement, and it’s “always someone else’s responsilility” attitude!

  7. Unfortunately for a lot of us there is no “Next Time”. The houses we bought at astronomical prices will see to it that we spend the rest of our days working to pay back the banks for the huge mortgages we got. When Fine Gael did their Knight in Shining Armour speel at the last election, I like many hoped that they would make some in-roads into the damage caused by the Fianna Fail government. Unfortunately they let us down too. while I don’t for one second put Brian Cowen in the same bracket as the current crop of politicians, they all have the same character traits.

  8. Brian was behind me in a queue at a petrol station recently–he avoided eye contact with all around him– he cut a rather sorry figure. He and Bertie are poster boys for the old toxic FF crony capitalist bog men who hero worshipped filth like CJ and his ilk. We should have had a referendum after the last election to give citizens a choice to ban FF from participation in Government for 10 years. To think that they have crawled back to within 2% of FG in the pools says much about us as a Nation. We need to hold up a mirror and take a long hard look at what and who we are as a people– I think My Big Fat Gypsy Wedding pretty much sums up our mores.

  9. Famous FF Quotes….

    “After Mature Recollection………”
    “The Debt is still there.”
    “A lot Done….More to Do.”

    Is anyone surprised at all? Really??!!

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.