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Austerity: Never forget… December 5, 2012

Posted by WorldbyStorm in Economy, Irish Politics.

An excellent point made, in view of today’s events, in the Irish Times on Monday in a letter.

Sir, – What amuses me about the discussions about budget is that everyone seems to have forgotten the additional measures taken in 2010 and 2011. These hits are cumulative. The real figures appear to be €3 billion in 2010, €6 billion in 2011 (including the 2010 €3 billion) and now €9 billion in 2012 (including the €3 billion in 2010 and the €3 billion in 2011). A grand total of €18 billion in three years over and above all the pre-existing taxes. The Government must be delighted that the only figure we hear mentioned is this year’s €3 billion and not €18 billion. – Yours, etc,

This should be shouted from the rooftops.


1. Desmond O'Toole - December 5, 2012

Actually it’s meaningless. If taxes are to be calculated cumulatively then so should the public expenditure these taxes support. Cue haters and personal abuse … NOW!


2. WorldbyStorm - December 5, 2012

Actually it’s worse than the letter writer suggests. Budget 2010: €4bn Budget 2011: €6bn Budget 2012: €3.6 bn

Then there the emergency Budget in 2009 which I can’t find a figure for.

Thanks for pointing that up.

But thanks also for spectacularly missing the point which is that this state has already seen massive cuts in expenditures across five years and is set for at least two more years of same and potentially more .


CMK - December 5, 2012

Desmond’s baby – the Fiscal/Austerity Treaty – is due to arrive, just in time, in 2015 so that the austerity junkies in the Labour Party need have no fear. Eamon Gilmore was explaining yesterday that we’re 85% there with austerity and ‘tough’ budgets. In the meantime, the debt/GDP ratio has worsened beyond that even imagined in November 2010 and the markets, who are savvier than any member of the Labour Party, will know that the debt/GDP ratio is meaningless for Ireland and that debt/GNP is the true measure; THAT is pushing us into Greek territory. Labour’s friends in ‘THE MARKETS’ know this and when the state tries to exit the ‘bailout’ this time next year it’ll be put firmly in its place by the very same markets. Then it’ll be back for ‘bailout’ number two and a doubling down of austerity.

Interestingly, there was a profile of Attorney General, Maire Whelan, in the most recent ‘Phoenix’ and the point was made in that profile that far from the unions being the main source of funding for Labour it is actually the upper echelons of the Bar which provides very substantial financial support to that party. This may explain Labour’s seeming reluctance to really go after top earners and their seeming ease with attacking low to middle income earners. Senior Council having to hand over a couple of grand a year extra in tax might be very reluctant to contribute to a party which pushed through that policy. No doubt Desmond will have a different view.


PaddyM - December 5, 2012

Surprisingly enough, Seán Whelan (RTÉ economic correspondent) made the point about the cumulative cutbacks (€24 billion over the last 5 years) and the increasing difficulties involved in finding the cutbacks (as well as the effects on the citizenry) on the 9 o’clock news last night.


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