Standard and Poors opine on the democratic decision of the people of the Irish state… hmmm March 31, 2009Posted by WorldbyStorm in Economics, Economy, Irish Politics.
Perhaps I’m being overly sensitive, but I can’t help but find something a bit inappropriate in the report, on the front page of the IT as one might expect, that:
Agency says Ireland may need ‘new faces in Government’
And it continues:
Frank Gill, speaking a day after the agency lowered Ireland’s credit rating, also said Ireland had a “very low” chance of defaulting on its debt during an interview with Newstalk radio this morning.
Mr Gill said a change of Government may be required in an effort to stabilise the debt to gross domestic product ratio. That ratio may rise to above 9.5 per cent, according to the Government, more than three times the European Union limit.
Yes. Well, unless I’m much mistaken I was under the impression that the EU was cogniscent of that fact and had accounted for us running a much greater than usual debt for a limited period of time.
But it’s the first comment which is, in a sense, breath-taking. Who precisely are Standard and Poors to be making intrusive comments about the democratic choices of the irish people? You may have noticed that contributors to the Cedar Lounge have been, and appear to be likely to continue to be – what’s the term… oh, yeah, harshly critical of the Government. But that Government remains the democratic choice of the Irish people as expressed through the last election, still not quite two years past. Now, it may be that an election is necessary. But I’d like to think that it would be as a result of circumstances intrinsic to the political processes in this state. Not noises off.
And the source of these statements is one I’d treat with a certain scepticism at the best of times.
But then, why the surprise?
Consider that the Irish Times last week argued that:
Ultimately, however, it is what the Government decides in the emergency budget on April 7th and how it balances tax rises and expenditure cuts that matter. Success or failure there will be measured both by the reaction of the public and, critically, by the judgment of the bond market.
If those are the criteria by which a sovereign democratic state is meant to operate where the bond markets appear to be elevated to a level equal to, if not (critically) greater than, the ‘public’ where exactly are we again?