Joan Burton: Tax cuts are essential - but the highest earners will still have to pay fair share
This year, as we commemorate the Rising, the people will also elect the next government. To me, it is fitting that there should be a General Election in 2016, because the people voting to chart the future course of a sovereign state is precisely what the founders fought for.
Of course in 2010, we lost much of that sovereignty in a very real sense as the troika arrived in town after the Fianna Fáil-led government brought the country to the brink of ruin.
Five years on, the overall picture is very different. Labour in government, together with our coalition partner Fine Gael, have driven a strong economic recovery. That recovery is why this month all workers will take home more pay because of USC reductions; why child benefit will increase by €5 to help every family; and why older people will see the state pension rise by €3 a week.