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Why is Ireland so backwards compared to other European countries?


antiestablishmentarian

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May 25, 2009
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Something that strikes anyone with an interest in Irish society and politics is the sheer backwardness of it compared to most other advanced capitalist countries: in terms of rampant corruption at every level of governance (from Stroke Fahy up to Bertie), the sheer incompetence of the political and business élite (our 'greatest' entrepreneurs are usually people like Denis O'Brien or Michael O'Leary who either made their money in alleged [URL="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Denis_O'Brien#Moriarty_Tribunal_investigates_mobile_phone_license"]dodgy[/URL] dealings or by absolutely slaughtering wages and conditions in a race to the bottom), the relative backwardness of society in many ways (blasphemy laws enshrined in the Bunreacht, Church and State still meshed together) and of course the underdeveloped political discourse (FF/FG being two cheeks of the same backside). Why is this? What is it about Ireland that makes it different to other countries? I have some ideas myself but I wanna see what others think before I divulge them.
 


McDave

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Jul 10, 2008
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1. While we have some great individuals, IMO the Irish have a strong complacent streak and a need to conform.
2. We're desperately poor at developing systems - we make too much up as we go along.
3. We're still too close to the parochial mindset.
4. We ridicule ideas too easily and have a tendency to play the man.
 

nonpartyboy

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Sheep mere sheep are the irish, anyone who goes against the grain is seen as a troublemaker and apple cart upsetter, the further you go down the country the worse it gets. Yet if the brits invaded in the morning they would all be out with their pitchforks, imho the best have always left, leaving us with the cowardly hat tipping wastes of space. Most irish are simply institutionalised in their little servile world.
 

breakingnews

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Loads of reasons:

Ireland is still quite rural compared to other European countries.

We only developed economically over the past 20 years.

Free education only came in the late 1960s (and even with free education, we've produced ill-educated people).
 

dresden8

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Loads of reasons:

Ireland is still quite rural compared to other European countries.

We only developed economically over the past 20 years.

Free education only came in the late 1960s (and even with free education, we've produced ill-educated people).
The French people who overthrew their rulers were poorly educated, but they had balls.
 

Clanrickard

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in terms of rampant corruption at every level of governance (from Stroke Fahy up to Bertie),
Total bull. Ireland isn't a particularly corrupt country. In fact it is relatively clean Corruption Perceptions Index - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

business élite (our 'greatest' entrepreneurs are usually people like Denis O'Brien or Michael O'Leary who either made their money in alleged [URL="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Denis_O'Brien#Moriarty_Tribunal_investigates_mobile_phone_license"]dodgy[/URL] dealings or by absolutely slaughtering wages and conditions in a race to the bottom),
Ryanair hostesses earn more than Aer Lingus FYI. Michael O'Leary is successful and respected. Can you show me countries where business like him are paragons of social virtue.

the relative backwardness of society in many ways (blasphemy laws enshrined in the Bunreacht, Church and State still meshed together)
In Sweden the head of state must be Protestant as is the case in Norway and Britain which also has a blasphemy law. Are they "backward" too?
 

Irelands Call

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Have a good look around next time you leave the country and you'll be glad to be back.

We are still one of the best places in the world.
 

Pabilito

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Invaded by Normans, Vikings, Brits etc, dominated and then:

- Parochialism promoted by the church
- Tribalism promoted by the GAA
- Cronyism promoted by political system
- Abuse promoted by church, unions etc

We should request the EU to cite us as a special needs basket case .
 

SideysGhost

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A rigid herd conformity based on fear of Authority - it's been drummed into us violently over centuries by the Brits, the Church and Fianna Fáil that the way to get by is to keep the head down, don't rock the boat, don't speak out of turn, don't be attracting the attention of Authority. And anyone who does gets ruthlessly suppressed by everyone else around them, desperate to prove that they are good little sheep and to appease the angry gods.

That, and our location geographically results in us crouched shivering behind the dark shadow of the wall of ignorance and barbarism that is Britain. No light of civilisation reaches past to brighten these shores - and if any ever did the sleveens would tout on it to their masters out of fear and a servile need to please their "betters".

Now slowly this was breaking down since the mid-1980s, but then FF went and banjaxed the economy - again! - and now all the people that were able to stand against the conformist herd pressure and who had a bit of get up and go have got up and left.

And so these impulses get reinforced every 20 or 30 years, as they've been reinforced over centuries.

I don't think there's anything genetically wrong even with our damaged gene pool because take Irish people out of Ireland into a civilised environment and after a few years of adjustment they usually thrive and do very well for themselves. It's societal conditioning and culture, nothing more.
 

sport02

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Have a good look around next time you leave the country and you'll be glad to be back.

We are still one of the best places in the world.

With our economy on its last feet.
With buisness struggling.
Such hgh unemployment.
A threat of the IMF coming in.
The state bankrupt because of the banks and FF.
Inemptitudes pretending to be politicans.
Laughing stock of the world.

Great place to live in.
 

asknoquestions

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I don't think it's much more corrupt than other European countries.

One difference is that some European countries have party lists instead of directly elected politicians. These politicians are usually highly qualified professionals, though some of them also come up through trades unions etc. They tend to be a bit elitist and probably more out of touch with ordinary people than Irish politicians are, but they are not always pandering to their hometown audience.
 

SideysGhost

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How could anyone possibly be more out of touch with ordinary people than Irish politicians? :shock:
 

Irelands Call

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With our economy on its last feet. World crisis
With buisness struggling. World crisis
Such hgh unemployment. World crisis and now stable
A threat of the IMF coming in. Not going to happen
The state bankrupt because of the banks and FF. World crisis so nothing to do with FF
Inemptitudes pretending to be politicans. And it is you who wish for them in a new government
Laughing stock of the world. Brian Cowen was named as one of the worlds best leaders

Great place to live in.
I think you need to be put straight on somethings
 

nonpartyboy

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No system is perfect
As in the forelock tugging system ?. You'd really have to wonder how simple can a quarter of a race of people be before they realised they'd been had.
 

Raketemensch

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Total bull. Ireland isn't a particularly corrupt country. In fact it is relatively clean Corruption Perceptions Index - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.



Ryanair hostesses earn more than Aer Lingus FYI. Michael O'Leary is successful and respected. Can you show me countries where business like him are paragons of social virtue.



In Sweden the head of state must be Protestant as is the case in Norway and Britain which also has a blasphemy law. Are they "backward" too?
from Wikipedia:
Criticism

The Corruption Perceptions Index has drawn increasing criticism in the decade since its launch, leading to calls for the index to be abandoned.[6][7][8] This criticism has been directed at the quality of the Index itself, and the lack of actionable insights created from a simple country ranking.[9][10] Because corruption is willfully hidden, it is impossible to measure directly; instead proxies for corruption are used. The CPI uses an eclectic mix of third-party surveys to sample public perceptions of corruption through a variety of questions, ranging from "Do you trust the government?" to "Is corruption a big problem in your country?"
You have cherry picked this index without discussing the methodology. It's just a few questionnaires, it doesn't tell us much about corruption, especially since it is hard to agree a definition.
Example, we now know that the financial regulator had massive pressure to take a hands-off approach during the Bertie era because that approach led to short term 'growth'. Is that corruption? It won't show up in this kind of survey but it has definitely contributed to the current mess.
Discuss!
 

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