“There has been comment which has been neither helpful nor, in my view, appropriate, and I would like to move on from that and give the view that we have collectively as a Government have, yes, difficult times, but we have the capacity to deal with these issues and we would like to revert back to the international reputation we had and continue to have,” she told The Irish Times.
‘Reverting back’ is one of those phrases that sets my teeth on edge. However, it’s not as bad as when ‘revert’ is used in the place of ‘refer’, as in, ‘for any future issues relating to rottweillers running amok in the playground, please revert to Mrs O’Keefe’. But here, even if we can understand the meaning of revert back, it doesn’t make sense in this context. How can you revert back to something you continue to have?
However, ‘revert back’ is a favourite of American companies in Ireland, so we can’t discount the possibility that Mary Coughlan has gone native in her attempts to convince the Obama administration not to change the tax regime governing US corporations operating overseas.