10 2 mins 10 yrs

Whilst I can be critical of the Irish Government I am also able to recognise when it tries to do the right thing and in this area, it is at least trying;

The Irish government has announced plans to reform the public service by cutting staff numbers, culling the number of state agencies and axing a controversial decentralisation programme. The Taoiseach Enda Kenny said the plans were the beginning of “radical changes” across government. Currently around 297,000 people are employed in Ireland’s public sector. That figure will be reduced by 23,500 by 2015.

This cut, around 10%, is a start although not enough. However contrast the strength of the Southern Irish government on this with the utter weakness of the Northern Ireland Assembly. The latter seeks to protect every unaffordable public sector job. The reason for this difference in approach is easy enough to understand. The Irish Republic had to go into economic meltdown before it took a long hard look at its finances. Northern Ireland is in gradual economic meltdown and the political class here think they can manage that decline.

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  1. While at Stormont they preserve NI Water as a state monopoly and avoid charging users according to what they use, a truly stalinist approach.

  2. The Irish Republic has less economic sovereignty than the north. This plan is not an Irish plan it is a German plan for Ireland. If the objective was to bring revenue and expenditure into line it would be one thing but this austerity is about forcing the people of Ireland to pay the gambling losses of the German banks. It is the worst and most unfair economic policy visited on us since the famine. But it’s our own fault again for putting up with it.

  3. “pay the gambling losses of the German banks”

    How much of the bailout is for German and how much for Irish banks, do you know, Henry?

  4. the 10% goal of personnel cuts has been a talking point of several of the republican candidates… lets see if they actually follow through when they take office.

    When you consider that over 60% of the U.S. new hires in the last 3 years have been government jobs, I’ll believe it when I see it.

  5. Buying government bonds is now ” gambling ” is it?

    Only in crazy world.

    Unless you want to take the position that all investment is the same of gambling. Which is untrue.

    An Irish government bond, before the unfathomable government decision to guarantee all bank debts, would have been a fairly prudent thing to buy.

    Only now, in the more grave environment, could a decision to buy an Irish bond be seen as gambling.

    Words matter.

  6. It appears that the EU representatives of those who really govern the province of Ireland had oversight of the budget:


    – Taoiseach Enda Kenny has rejected reports that details of next month’s Budget, including a planned hike in the VAT rate, were shown to German officials yesterday.

    Mr Kenny met chancellor Angela Merkel in Berlin yesterday after which reports emerged that the Irish Government was planning raise the top rate of VAT by 2 per cent to 23 per cent.

    According to documents presented to a Bundestag budget committee, the measure would generate an additional €670 million for the Government.

    Opposition parties rounded on the Government today accusing it a “staggering breach of faith”, with suggestions that the German chancellor was now “pulling the strings”. –

  7. jeez – no wonder the Irish economy is still in freefall:


    – FORMER Tanaiste Mary Harney yesterday insisted she has earned her €130,000 a year pension – which she describes as “very decent” – after 34 years in politics.

    Her defence of her lavish pension followed Taoiseach Enda Kenny’s indication that the Government had no intention of cutting the eye-watering pensions being paid to former cabinet ministers.

    Mr Kenny’s stark admission came as the Government revealed plans to cut the numbers working in the public sector by 23,500, scrap 50 quangos and ditch 40 decentralisation projects.

    And the Irish Independent learned last night that 70,000 college students are facing a cut in their maintenance grants. –

    The political class across what may currently be described as the western world is totally corrupt, blinded by greed, and utterly incompetent. This applies to every ‘mainstream’ party and politician.

  8. Oops – just spotted ATW’s item on Ireland’s budget.

    Btw David, did you get anything from me in the post? If so, please use it asap.

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