A Mini-Budget By Any Other Name …
Deaglán de Bréadún
Today Brian Cowen announced that, by the end of this month, there would be what everyone other than himself and his Government colleagues are calling a “mini-budget”. There is even less money in the State kitty than previously thought. Today’s Cabinet meeting discussed the issue at length and decided to bring in extra revenue-raising measures. The detail won’t be revealed until the day and, in fact, the date of the mini-budget itself has not even been decided.
What a terrible time! Tax receipts are down €1.8bn compared to this time last year. The answer is obviously to find tax somewhere else but this will reduce the level of spending and perhaps provoke an even worse crisis.
Meanwhile, I got the following missive from an Australian reader and former visitor to Ireland, who wishes to remain anonymous. It is worth reading in the light of the current state of Irish public opinion (1 Australian Dollar = €0.50 = US$0.63 = UK£0.45):-
We live in Australia, pay council rates $2000, water rates $2000, Land Tax on everything not our personal home, Capital Gains Tax if we sell anything that is not our personal home.
We pay car registration which includes roadmaking and that is every year $585. as well as all the home insurances. Our Tax scales start at $6000 and after that you pay 17% then 25% up to approx $35,000 and then possibly 35% until you get to approx.$80,000 and then $45,000.
We pay medicare levy on our tax on top of that and then go out and pay private health insurance $2500 for family per year. We do not provide pensions for those who have more capital than $880,000 and you have then to live on your own means or superannuation that you yourself have saved.
What on earth do the Irish want…when we visited a year ago we found whinging Irish everywhere…they pay so little for everything. The rich can be multi-millionaires and still get the Irish Pension.
No wonder your country is in a mess. Make the rich pull their weight. One man said his wife died but was happy to have her govt.pension as well as his own and he lived in a huge mansion … he was a man of considerable wealth owning so much public housing.
What is wrong with your government…it is always the rich who lead the march….let them share their wealth with the poor.
Signed…Concerned Visitor to Ireland