To ditch Ireland’s Wild West tag we must stop acting like cowboys

Caveat: It doesn’t matter if the State is a ‘tax haven’, only that it looks like one

Clint Eastwood in ‘The Outlaw Josey Wales’. Ireland still struggles with its financial “Wild West” tag. Photo by Silver Screen Collection/Getty Images

Clint Eastwood in ‘The Outlaw Josey Wales’. Ireland still struggles with its financial “Wild West” tag. Photo by Silver Screen Collection/Getty Images

Ireland has never really managed to shake off the financial “Wild West” tag the New York Times used during the last boom to decry this State’s light-touch approach to business regulation.

This week, tax politics reminded me of one the best films ever made about the Wild West, The Outlaw Josey Wales. In an infamous exchange, a sneering politician patronises a gunman with “an old saying: to the victor belongs the spoils”.

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