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More inept governance

6.21.2005

Many of us got very irked at the debacle of the Health and Children committee report into the Travers Report. The divisions put on display that day were a condemnation of our present committee system which fails to encourage oversight and merely promotes divisive party political positions.
The report today from the PAC goes some way to renew my own confidence in the whole committee process and provides some welcome oxygen for dissent within the government ranks. It is nice to hear the PAC which has proven itself to be the best example of a cross-party committee providing oversight and collective argument and critique. We should be desiring more of this behavior from across our parliamentary body, a fear of speaking the truth to power is a crippling deficiency in any parliamentary democracy.
Fair play to the FF member of the committee, TD John Macguinness for getting on board and calling a farce a farce. The usual government prevarication in the face of overwhelming evidence of wrongdoing cannot be allowed to go on. I am a firm believer in the power of a good committee system to generate public interest and the ideal of good governance. The whole debacle of the Health committee made a joke of the notion that the Dail can adequately oversee government. Again the case is becoming stronger and stronger for a reform led government to tidy up the mess that years of laissez faire have done to our houses of oireachtas. Its a sad but not irrevocable situation.
Government in this country is basically an exercise in spin, damage control and ineptitude. Its time a genuine and honest government came into power. One who realises the need for reform of the dail and who can take control of the institutional malaise in this country. A root and branch evaluation of the way this country is run must be undertaken and the whole democratic system dragged into the 21st century in its outlook and responsibilities. We don't want more laissez faire we want some guarantees that society can benefit equaly and a fair society is not mutually exclusive with a wealthy one.
RR

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