Ireland’s economic collapse hit with bewildering speed and cut deep into many lives. At a time when we most needed leadership, our politicians let us down, telling us we were all to blame for the recession and that we just needed to suffer a little pain to make everything right again. It was a Big Lie. This book offers an alternative view to the official cover story of austerity. It’s about the great majority of us who weren’t gambling with our future. It’s about what’s being done to us, who is doing it and why. It’s also about who benefits from this and who gets it in the neck. And what we might do about that. Gene Kerrigan delves deep into the muddy waters of the boom and crash, the chaos in the banks, the intervention by the troika and the erosion of democracy. He looks at how the Dáil and the media became full of mindless free market cheerleaders, how the country became laden down with unregulated bankers, and how the government acquiesced in imposing a destructive programme of austerity on the Irish people. Meanwhile, the elites in our society wrap the green flag around themselves, calling for sacrifice and patriotism, while they hold on fiercely to every perk and privilege. It’s time to tell the truth.