The Vilification of The Reasonable

Cunning Hired Knaves

This is a version of a comment I left on an analysis by Irish Times political correspondent Harry McGee, titled ‘Imprisonment will galvanise support in anti-water charge groups’.


Harry McGee’s piece, typically for a political correspondent, purports to be the work of an impartial observer of a wider fray.

But the function of this piece, as with others of its kind, is to actively shape public perceptions along particular lines.

McGee wonders how the ‘public mood’ will be affected by the jailing of water protesters. He does so as if Ireland’s media apparatus -of which he and his paper are part- had no role in shaping the public mood, whether in general or, in this specific case, through its representation of the water charges protesters.

No doubt the pearl-clutching frenzy that followed Joan Burton’s minor inconvenience -farcical when considered in light of the brutal damage inflicted on Irish society by her…

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