Via the Daily Telegraph:
Mr Cowen’s ruling Fianna Fail party was crushed by Sinn Fein in a humilating by-election result that jeopardises [Ireland’s] deeply unpopular austerity budget for 2011 that increases taxes and cuts spending as a condition of a £72 billion bailout. Donegal south west, normally a Fianna Fail stronghold, voted for Sinn Fein in an election that became a demonstration of Irish anger over loss of sovereignty and the austerity measures demanded by EU officials. Pearse Doherty, the victorious newly elected Sinn Fein MP, vowed that his mission was to sink the “unfair and unjust” budget. He said: “The people are telling Brian Cowen to get out of office. It is not clear this budget will pass.”
And if the budget doesn’t pass…
For more background to the Irish mess try Kevin Myers’s recent piece in the London Spectator, a bitter denunciation of the behavior of Ireland’s political class with the added advantage of introducing its readers to this splendid word:
Flaithiúlacht, which means ruinous generosity, especially with someone else’s money.
Not such a bad word to remember over here either.