Thursday 5 December 2019

Austerity overload

• In response to K Nolan and his questioning of the "Nos to everything" (Letters, April 30), it is not a question of a reduction in the necessary austerity being imposed here. It is a question of who gets to impose it, and to what potentially far greater extent.

The previous Fianna Fail government gave away the lion's share of Irish fiscal sovereignty in 2010, admittedly under great external pressure from the European Central Bank, which already controlled monetary policy. This left us with a fraction of the control we used to have over our own financial affairs.

This treaty seeks to impose legal budget restrictions that would mean the country couldn't run a budget deficit without significant repercussive measures from Brussels.

In other words, it would take away the one minute bit of financial control that we still have in Ireland.

Is this sort of arrangement really favourable when we are already beginning to recover?

At present, the unelected-by-us troika are forcing the elected-by-us Government to sell state agencies for a pittance, impose taxes on every supposed "luxury" in the country, from water to septic tanks and home ownership, and to spend less and less money each year on "non-essential" services like hospitals and special needs assistants. This is with a majority stake in the Finance Department and still with some opposition in it.

Who knows what they might put a charge on with a monopoly on the country, which is what a Yes vote would give them?

Killian Foley-Walsh

Irish Independent

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