Saturday, October 28, 2017

Irish Examiner is in irrational, full-on panic mode over Brexit

Sometimes I try to imagine what Ireland would be like if it was in Europe or even on planet Earth. It's a little mind game that the editors at the Irish Examiner should try someday. What am I talking about? Their editorial this morning on Brexit finishes with this:
What a terrible Pandora’s box has been opened and for what? Apart from climate change it is hard to think of a greater challenge faced by this island since the Great Famine of 1845. It is hard to be optimistic but we must remain determinedly so.
Huh? I don't deny that the post-Brexit economic environment will be very challenging, BUT there were other events between the Great Famine and Brexit that were bigger challenges than the UK's departure from the European Union.

First, WWI. Tens of thousand of Irishmen died in that war. Somewhere in the range of 30,000 - 40,000 seems to be accepted among historians these days. 30,000+ Irishmen dead in a war. I would imagine that was challenging.

Then there was the War of Independence, the Irish Civil War and all the work that went into rebuilding Ireland afterwards. I'd guess that was fairly challenging.

Then there was WWII. Again, thousands of Irishmen died in the conflict and for a while the future of Europe hung by a fingernail. I would bet those were challenging times and worrying, right? I mean, the Nazis could have won, which would have been an issue if Ireland was in Europe. If.

There were some significantly challenging times post-War too, some that were probably about as challenging as life post-Brexit will be. And there was that whole Cold War thing when life on Earth itself seemed to be at risk.

No, life post-Brexit will not be the greatest "challenge faced by this island since the Great Famine." Not even close.