Charlie Haugheys enigmatic reservations

CHARLES HAUGHEY is rivalled only by Jack Lynch in evasiveness and managing to give the impression of saying one thing while actually saying another. Note how he has never actually said he supports Jack Lynch as leader of Fianna Fail or that he supports the Lynch line on the North as stated in the Tralee speech of September '69 or the US speech of November '70.


In the budget debate on February 14, Haughey began his speech with highly equivocal references to Ruairi Quinn's "only valid argument that can be made against the budget, that, is that it is overrreliant on private enterprise". The remark prompted political commentators to note that he was distancing himself from the Governnment's somewhat suspect economic strategy.

But in the next few paraagraphs, Haughey went on to refute that which he had just previously characterised as valid - "if we are to set two groups of executives against each other, my money . . . would have to be on the private enterpreneur as distinct from the executive of a nationalised industry",

On balance, Charlie is as much tied to the economic strategy as the rest of them, in spite of all his private misgivings about the course of Government policy.