Country hungry for a fresh start ahead of coalition talks
TODAY, THE people have spoken and with the simple stroke of the humble pencil made clear their hope for the future of Ireland. There is a definite atmosphere of freshness and of a new start ahead with reports already of contact having been made between Fine Gael and Labour regarding coalition talks.
As expected Fianna Fáil was all but annihilated at the polls and while we place trust in the new breed the months ahead will tell of their abilities. It might have taken a while for the full volume of our anger to be acted upon due to never ending hold ups on Brian Cowen's part but now that our votes have been cast the country appears satisfied and hungry for a fresh start.
Let's be realistic, our wounds won't heal overnight and we are not naive enough to think that new Government equals the erosion of all the bad that came before but what we desperately want and need is simple stability.
The Celtic Tiger awoke something sickening amongst our people, a grubby greed which gobbled up our sense of humility and feasted on the ‘Keeping up with the Jones' tradition.
Now that we have all been brought back down to earth with a firm bang we have started looking at what is really important, family, health and being able to plan for the future.
In times past we cast our votes and drove off into the sunset content to let the politicians take over and do what they were very well paid to do. This time, it feels different. Yes we voted and made our feelings clear. Yes we decided to give Enda Kenny a chance to prove himself but never again will we sit back and let them get on with it.
The responsibility now lies with the electorate to demand that promises are fulfilled and if not to hold our politicians to account. We should be questioning them on issues that concern us and keeping informed during the lifespan of the next Government and not just at election time.
The wealth of our boom years was vastly squandered and should we be fortunate enough to make it back to a comfortable position it is imperative that good fortune never goes to our heads again. How long it will take for any improvement to show is anyone's guess but one thing is certain-it will take a very long time for people to forget the pain they are suffering at present and the damage that has been done.
A new Government in isolation won't right every wrong but by listening to what the people want and need it can be guided in the right direction. Now is a time that we, as we should make clear our opinions on the performance of the new cabinet which, if not up to our standards must be told such. If we take nothing else from this recession we will know how to stand up and be counted.
The responsibility lies with the people to demand that promises are fulfilled.