Tuesday 21 August 2018

Mr Varadkar goes to Davos

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar
Taoiseach Leo Varadkar
Brendan O'Connor

Brendan O'Connor

Davos is where the global elite, tech giants and CEOs gather to have concerned conversations about inequality, and 'What will we do about this Trump fellow? He's giving the global elite a bad name', and 'Maybe we need to let some ladies on the board, because they're causing a bit of a scene.'

So obviously, this being a country where we like the global elite and tech giants, where we court them with our reasonable but totally legitimate tax rates, it was important that we should be there. So who to send? Obviously Paschal should go. He's the one who reads all the books, and knows stuff, and he's been working on his delivery as well, sounding more grown up. If the global elite get smart with him, he can always quote some stuff from all those books he reads. But he can't go on his own obviously. So who will we send with him? Hmmmm. I know! I know who to send to the gathering of financial masterminds and whizz-kids, who all managed to use the downturn to get even richer. Let's send the guy who bought a property at the top of the market just as the downturn was starting, and who took out a 40-year, 100pc mortgage. There's a guy with financial smarts who will be well able to mix it up with the global elite. And if anyone asks him about the mortgage, he can just stress the fact that he got a tracker, so, you know, actually he did quite well, and he expects to be out of negative equity any day now. There's no way the global elite will try to pull the wool over his eyes. Clearly a tough negotiator and a shrewd dealmaker.

Now, next question is who should we send in to the panel on tax avoidance? Hang on a minute, tax avoidance? We should definitely avoid that panel. But if we have to send someone make it Paschal. He's probably even read this Stiglitz fellow. And even if Stiglitz puts it up to him, Paschal will just smile and thank him very much for the question. As against Leo, who would probably say he can't answer the question until he knows what the question is, even if the question was obvious to everyone. We could be weeks waiting for an answer.

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