Thursday 8 December 2016

Ireland's political class has failed to keep its promises – giving Lucinda her big chance

Published 30/05/2014 | 02:30

If politicians want to do right by their country there are a few simple principles to follow.
If politicians want to do right by their country there are a few simple principles to follow.

IF politicians want to do right by their country there are a few simple principles to follow. One is to look after the money. Another is to look after the family. A third is to keep your promises. A fourth is to put your principles before your career and before your party, that is to say, follow your conscience, do what you believe is right.

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Taken as a whole, but with individual exceptions, Ireland's political class has failed to do all of these things. It did not look after the money. Instead it gave us the property bubble (and so did the German banks), it increased public spending enormously and it wasted lots of that money.

It has failed to look after the family in multiple ways. It thinks it is looking after the family via child benefit and the like, but in reality the philosophy behind tax individualisation reigns supreme. Instead of reducing the tax burden on families according to the number of dependents each one has, the family is regarded mainly as a group of largely disconnected individuals who are not dependent on each other and is taxed accordingly.

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