This Week They Said

Sat, Jan 28, 2012, 00:00

What happened in our country was that people simply went mad borrowing. The extent of personal credit, personal wealth created on credit, was done between people and banks – a system that spawned greed to a point where it just went out of control completely with a spectacular crash.

– Taoiseach Enda Kenny at the World Economic Forum in Davos.

The Taoiseach is clearly taking one approach at home and another abroad. While he’s here, the priority is media management and preserving popularity. When he is abroad, the priority appears to be to avoid putting the blame where it belongs. For example, where was the Taoiseach’s harsh criticism of European banks which helped flood Ireland with credit for years? – Fianna Fáil TD Niall Collins.

He should be applauded, not in any way criticised. We need to say, “hands up we may have got it wrong” but the balance of that is that we are the only country in Europe that, after making difficult decisions to fix our economy, will meet our promises . . . Our Taoiseach is one of the few leaders who have come to Davos and actually been honest.

– Businessman Denis O’Brien.

While I have been happy to welcome the present Roman Catholic Archbishop of Dublin as a preacher here, I have to say that there has been no reciprocal invitation to the pro-cathedral. Contrary to what has been asserted elsewhere, I find ecumenism in Dublin to be years behind what I experienced in Kilkenny 25 years ago, where I preached in every church in that city. Ecumenism here seems to be equated to fellowship between the two archbishops: that should merely be the first step.

– The Very Revd Robert McCarthy in his final sermon as dean of St Patrick’s Cathedral.

We can either settle for a country where a shrinking number of people do really well, while a growing number of Americans barely get by. Or we can restore an economy where everyone gets a fair shot, everyone does their fair share, and everyone plays by the same set of rules. What’s at stake are not Democratic values or Republican values, but American values. We have to reclaim them.

– President Barack Obama in his State of the Union address.