Saturday 3 December 2016

Real battle is for independence

Published 18/02/2011 | 05:00

ANYBODY who follows election campaigns will be forgiven for feeling a sense of deja vu as the political parties indulge in a spot of name calling and bicker about the effects of their various tax policies.

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This is politics as usual, here and in most democracies across the world. The snag is that we cannot afford the luxury of politics as usual while the debate about tax is obscuring just how crucial this campaign is to our future.

A quick glance across Europe serves as a chilling reminder of how limited our choices already are. In Athens, the International Monetary Fund and the European Union are busy telling the Greek government to sell everything from railways and airports in a stark reminder that failure to implement deep cuts will provoke our creditors to take real action. In London, where the economy is stumbling as Prime Minister David Cameron's deep cuts take effect, we can see an equally vivid reminder that there is no such thing as large and painless reductions in State spending. Taking billions out of an economy winds a country in the short-term.

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