BY SEAN FLYNN
“The next two months for Ireland will be gruelling – and unforgettable” writes Keith Duggan in the Irish Times. The Republic of Ireland faces meltdown after October 31st if the UK leaves the EU on WTO terms. Ireland faces food and medicine shortages and 110,000 job losses if there’s a No Deal Brexit, Taoiseach Leo Varadkar warned on August 1st. Meanwhile the Irish Central Bank said a crash out on October 31st would cause an economic shock of “unprecedented nature”. The ICB has predicted No Deal would immediately relegate Ireland from being the Eurozone’s fastest growing economy to its slowest.
Actually, Keith Duggan was writing about the Irish rugby team. The men in green face England at Twickenham today and then march on to the World Cup, where they are dark horses but one of the better sides on show, with a canny manager in Joe Schmidt.
The Irish Independent is also playing ostrich about Brexit. Once fully behind Varadkar, the paper seems more focused on sideshow nonsense these days. Maybe it’s the August silly season. Maybe they too are playing ostrich as Armageddon approaches. The paper is focused not on how Brexit will affect Irish meat and dairy exports but on how Boris Johnson dared show up at the Elysee Palace and put his foot on a table. There is one line of desperation in the piece which lets slip the hope-against-hope position of Varadkarians here in Ireland – “in the meeting, Emmanuel Macron told the Prime Minister the EU will not tear up Theresa May’s Brexit deal”. Yeah right. Ireland will win by 50 points this afternoon.
There seems to be a huge disconnect between on the one hand the governments of May and Varadkar and their peoples, as compared to the Johnson Government, which is in line with Brexiteer demands. Is it that as a consequence we will see the demise of the plastic globalist leaders we have been so accustomed to seeing both sides of the Irish Channel?
While the Irish and English fans drink to their hearts’ content in the Scrum Bar at the Home of Rugby today and share rugby tales into the wee hours in some Twickenham curry house, the disconnect between politicians and peoples will seem ever so sad.
While Brexit is what the British voted for and we’ve taken the mick out of it for so long this side of the Irish Channel, perhaps it was what we needed to realise that in fact our political masters needed a good seeing-to. The Johnson mould – whatever he does with his feet – is the one that today wins over peoples. If Johnson delivers Brexit, slashes taxes and billions start pouring into the UK economy, we will know who was right.