Thursday 8 December 2016

David McWilliams: Budget is yet another botched job from our impotent Government

Published 06/12/2012 | 17:00

JK Galbraith, the great American economist, said that the key job of a leader was to "understand the anxieties of the people, and do something to ease these anxieties". The Budget is an opportunity to set out the stall of any leadership, to articulate a coherent policy and to get on with those policies that might assuage the anxieties of the people.

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When judged from this standpoint, this Budget is an extraordinarily confused piece of financial gymnastics where the gymnast performs all sorts of tiny contortions, unconnected moves and ultimately lands unbalanced, pleading that the judges see some choreography after all the clumsy footwork.

If anything, it heightens the anxieties of the people because the people who have been hit most are mothers dependent on child benefit, homeowners already in huge negative equity and those who are paying PRSI which has been increased. In fact, one of the greatest myths from yesterday is that income tax has not been increased. What is PRSI, if not a tax?

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