Thursday 8 December 2016

Despite its Trump tactics, SF is likely to be the big loser after Budget 2017

Ciarán Conlon

Published 20/10/2016 | 02:30

'Donald Trump has played on voters' fears, insecurities and disaffections with government generally to run one of the most toxic, dishonest and dangerous political campaigns in history to bring himself and his moronic nonsense to the brink of the US presidency' Photo: REUTERS / Jonathan Ernst
'Donald Trump has played on voters' fears, insecurities and disaffections with government generally to run one of the most toxic, dishonest and dangerous political campaigns in history to bring himself and his moronic nonsense to the brink of the US presidency' Photo: REUTERS / Jonathan Ernst

I found myself thinking about 'The Lego Movie' as the entrails of the Budget were being pored over this week. It's ok, as father to eight and 10-year-old boys I'm now allowed to watch these movies openly. But more particularly it was the insanely catchy song from the movie - 'Everything is Awesome'. I'm humming the damn thing as I type.

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Now this thought process wasn't a response to Government or Fianna Fáil deputies selling the upside of the Budget too aggressively off a well-managed Budget communications plan - they know the public won't tolerate pre-2008 levels of hubris - but more a response to the unsurprising reaction of Sinn Féin. It occurred to me that if Sinn Féin decided to reboot 'The Lego Movie' franchise, it would give it a moody, DC Comics vibe and the title song would re-emerge as 'Everything is Awful'.

Now, everyone knows there is still huge amounts of work to be done to rebuild our communities and the many lives shattered by the crash but a Budget was just announced where €1.3bn had been put back in to the economy. Tax cutting as a share of the total was 23pc - even lower than the 25pc committed to in February - and the gains were capped at earnings of €70k.

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