ONLY THROUGH FREEDOM OF INFORMATION can Irish citizens have any hope of truly discovering why the origins of the country's debt. And that's why the work of Gavin Sheridan is so critically important.
In a four-page cover story, Sheridan shares a few insights about big stories his research helped expose in the Irish public interest. But as he also explains, the strategic interest of governments involves keeping information away from citizens. "If there's one thing that's clear from almost all of the scandals in Ireland's past, it's that secrecy meant a lack of access to information." And it's the secrecy behind Ireland's bank debt that confounds citizen who have a right to know more about the suffocating bank bailouts. To read Sheridan's account of the structural impediments facing people who wish to use the Freedom of Information Act, it will take decades to learn from the lessons of the past. That's because transparency isn't part of the remit of the National Asset Management Agency and it's also highly unlikely for citizens to inspect the working papers used by central bankers as they levied bail-out debts of more than EUR 8500 on every Irish citizen.
Gavin Sheridan -- "War of the Words" in the Sunday Business Post Magazine, February 24, 2013.