Friday 9 December 2016

Gene Kerrigan: Forget austerity, let's blame each other

The national fantasy about dole 'crackdowns' is only distracting us from the real problem, says Gene Kerrigan

Published 19/02/2012 | 05:00

IT'S a distasteful job, slouching along after Joan Burton, sweeping up her bullshit. But someone's got to do it. Comrade Burton is the Minister for Social Protection.

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This means her job is to shield us from the worst effects of a fickle world. One minute you're seemingly secure, planning the future; the next you're struck down by accident, illness or unemployment and you need a helping hand while you try to mend your life.

Hundreds of years of struggle led to the creation of a structure of Social Protection -- it's not something that just happened. There was a savage time when bad luck destroyed your life, and your family's lives. Today, when we work, or when we buy anything -- from a box of matches to a car -- we're putting aside a small amount, through tax, for the day we might need it.

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