Agree with both maman poulet http://www.mamanpoulet.com/minister-burton/ and Olivia O’Leary http://www.rte.ie/podcasts/2011/pc/pod-v-4m53s080311drivetime-pid0-293496.mp3 that Joan Burton deserved a senior economic ministry.
Why was she sidelined? She is articulate, informed, frank, courageous, honest and consistent. She will, as Maman Poulet says, no doubt make a great minister for Social Protection. But she deserved, given her record in opposition, to be at the heart of the situation. And we, the women – and the people – of Ireland deserved it too.
Don’t just take my word for it. This is what our friend Michael Lewis, of Vanity Fair fame, had to say about her last year.
“And in an hour of chatting about this and that, she strikes me as straight, bright, and basically good news.”
Of course, he also said this: “But her role in the Irish drama is as clear as Morgan Kelly’s: she’s the shrill mother no one listened to. She speaks in exclamation points with a whiny voice that gets on the nerves of every Irishman—to the point where her voice is parodied on national radio.”
Dear God – could we care less about her voice? Bertie spoke in riddles, yet he got to be Taoiseach. Cowen spoke in jargon, yet he was still elevated to the highest position. If Burton was a man, would she have been offered an economic portfolio?
Just asking boys…..
Here’s the Michael Lewis article. Read it and weep.