Friday, November 19, 2010

More than a footnote

This will win me no plaudits, but with the airwaves saturated with wailing Irish politicians, and a quota of lurid accounts from diverse media sources, we are really none the wiser, as to what is really going on.

In a way, this is classic Irish politics: "if you think you know what is going on, you haven't been listening". But a good place to start is with Ambrose, who might be close to identifying the real agenda, or part of it.

The European Central Bank, he says, has issued a clear warning that it will press ahead with plans to raise interest rates and withdraw lending support for banks despite the eurozone debt crisis, even if this risks pushing Ireland, Portugal and Spain into deeper trouble.

This is a short, newsy piece, though, lacking the detailed discussion that we usually get from Ambrose, so it looks more like work in progress. That apart, there are too many "actors" with agendas, there is too much theatre and too little hard information to work out what is really going on. But, when history comes to be written, the story of this week will, I suspect, be more than a footnote.

One thing though, the photo is rather funny: a Dublin beggar holds out a cup to Ajai Chopra, left, Deputy Director of the European Department of the IMF as he makes his way to talks with the Irish government in Dublin. I wonder who put him up to it.