The Game has Changed
Deaglán de Bréadún
First they imposed extra taxes; now it’s cutting welfare. But will it work? The international reaction has so far been favourable. That sector of opinion likes tough, right-of-centre economic measures.
We are at the mercy of events on the international market. Another shock to the system could floor us – as well as everybody else. There is only so much a country can do by itself.
The theory is that reducing public setor wages will eventually bring down labour costs in the private sector which in turn will help to attract investment. Time will tell.
There has been a rather muted response generally. Will righteous anger take hold of public sector workers in the New Year or is there a general demoralisation process taking place?
It would have been better in terms or national solidarity to have had a deal with the unions but the whole thing was handled rather badly and turned into a public relations disaster. The game has changed: there is a new reality and one wonders if there are people who still don’t realise that.