Cowen and Lenihan’s Radical Postmodernism Confuses Markets

Dublin – Shares in Irish financial markets plummeted again yesterday as it became obvious that both the Taoiseach and the Minister for Finance are radical postmodernists who deny that there is any inherent meaning behind words and numbers.

Lenihan and Cowen's revelation of their radical postmodernism terrified markets, nation.

Lenihan and Cowen's revelation of their radical postmodernism terrified markets, nation.

The two Brians, Cowen and Lenihan, gave a joint press conference which threw the nation and global financial markets into a state of confusion, as they continued their radical postmodern assault on the structures of transnational capitalism and the nation-state.

Journalists were utterly bewildered by the pair’s classic postmodernist strategy of abandoning logic and reason as ‘oppressive Eurocentric discourses.’ Vincent Browne asked Cowen if he accepted he was to blame for “screwing up the country,” only to be puzzled by Cowen’s reply.

I don’t accept that at all. I don’t accept your contention or the premise to your question that I’m the bogeyman you’re looking for,” said Cowen with an air of lofty superiority.

Confused, Browne pointed out that a premise lies behind an assumption and that he was, in fact, simply stating directly that Cowen was “a liability” to the nation.

Poststructuralist philosopher Jacques Derrida said he thought Cowen and Lenihan were irresponsible arseholes.

Poststructuralist philosopher Jacques Derrida said he thought Cowen and Lenihan were irresponsible arseholes.

“Ah, but don’t you see that you’re concluding in the implication something you assumed in the premise?” asked Cowen, suddenly pulling on a French beret and smoking a cigarette from a long filter. “It’s not your fault,” he added condescendingly, patting Browne’s hand consolingly before letting it linger for just a moment. “The flaw lies within the Aristotelian system of logic you are attempting to use.”

Browne wasn’t the only one to be caught out by the duo’s shock revelation of their radical postmodernism. Earlier in the day, Richard Crowley had the following exchange on This Week with Brian Lenihan:

Richard Crowley: Our strategy failed. Could you not admit that now?

Brian Lenihan: Yes it did in the sense that the banks were too big a problem for the country. I accept that.

Richard Crowley: And the steps you took were not enough to prevent it.

Brian Lenihan: The steps could not, given the limited resources a small state has. Yes, I accept all that. But nobody has suggested they were the wrong steps.

 Here, Crowley paused for a moment in utter confusion. “But, surely,” he said, frowning, “if they were the right steps they wouldn’t have failed? Surely a good strategy takes into account the strengths and weaknesses of those who have to carry it out?”

Lenihan chuckled, and suddenly adopted the pose of a famed French philosopher who knows that everything is relative. “But I was surrounded by figures, Richard,” he said, clenching a pipe between his teeth. “And we all know that figures are abstract human constructs. Who is to say that 2+2=4, or that €70 billion represents anything real? They are just shared illusions that I choose to question.”

Radical postmodernist Jean Baudrillard thinks the Irish should simply be kicked out of the EU.

Radical postmodernist Jean Baudrillard thinks the Irish should simply be kicked out of the EU.

“How much money are we borrowing from the EU?” asked Crowley bluntly.

It won’t be a three-figure sum,” replied Lenihan smugly.

“Well, of course not, if the country only needed a few hundred quid then I could loan it myself,” snapped Crowley in frustration. “It’s a lot more like 11 figures, isn’t it? It’s about €90,000,000,000, isn’t it?”

“Numbers are all meaningless abstractions,” said Lenihan, wrapping a fashionable scarf around his shoulders and drifting out of the studio to a waiting posse of French philosophy groupies.

Vincent Browne made one last desperate attempt to pierce the veil of fashionable poststructuralist thought that shielded the two Brians. “Do you accept any responsibility for what has been done to this country?” he asked Cowen.

Cowen smiled with the resignation of a superior being pestered by human mosquitoes. “The idea of ‘responsibility’ is just a social construct created by language and an enslaved Western mind. And who is ‘I’ in this sentence? Surely you are not still asserting that ‘I’ is ‘me,’ the rational Enlightenment subject?”

“So you don’t accept any of the blame for the nation’s bankruptcy?” asked Browne, clenching his fists.

“Very well, if you insist,” said Cowen resignedly, with the air of Gulliver trying not to step on the pygmies. “‘I’ have always taken full ‘responsibility’ for ‘my’ actions.”

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