Bertie Loved the Construction ‘Buzz’

Former Minister, Mary O’Rourke and Minister Frances Fitzgerald at the launch of O’Rourke’s autobiography, ‘Just Mary’.

Bertie Ahern loved the construction ‘buzz’.  I remember one day, as I was coming out of the lift on the fifth floor of Leinster House with him, he drew me to a window and said, ‘Look at the number of building cranes there are out there,’ – there were perhaps 20 or so on the horizon – ‘Isn’t it wonderful?’ Yes of course it was – it meant full employment and, as the construction taxes kept coming in, much of the consequent spending was good social spending.  But the difficulty was that at a crucial point, no one shouted ‘stop’ on construction, and spending got out of control, and policies became increasingly wayward.

From Mary O’Rourke’s autobiography, ‘Just Mary’.

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