Irony of Coalition using Fianna Fáil's recipe for re-election
Yesterday, ruminations quickly concluded with the commentariate deciding that Budget 2016 is designed to please the crowds, not the critics. The epic €1.5bn production, which could have been titled 'How to win friends and influence people', was trailered more heavily in recent weeks than the new James Bond movie. It contained few surprises and was created with just one simple mission in mind. Re-election.
In political terms, the spending extravaganza is not surprising, as it is this Government's last budget before the next general election.
Here is where the plot begins to unravel, not because the tactic of pre-election bumper budgets is untested in politics but, because it is the absolute antithesis of the promise upon which Fine Gael and Labour were elected in the first place.