Murphy: Broaden tax base to create a decent society

Speaking during RTE's Prime Time budget debate, lecturer in Irish Politics and Society Mary Murphy said that the strategy of recent budgets to match expenditure to the taxes available was an ill-conceived approach. Instead, Murphy said, a debate is needed about the kind of society we want, and the tax system we need to get it.


Budget 2014: Don't Just Read the Label, Look inside the Tin

So, Fine Gael has caved in to Labour. There will now be only €2.5 billion in fiscal adjustments (read: austerity), not €3.1 billion.  A victory for the junior partner or a necessary concession given the general austerity fatigue; regardless the reason, less cuts and taxes.  But how can we be sure?  Given what has happened over the last two budgets, I would urge caution. By Michael Taft (First published on Notes on the Front).

Stop digging on issue of raised bogs

A lost family photograph of ours evokes a particular memory for me. I was about four years of age standing next to my grandfather who was standing next to his donkey which had baskets on either side full of turf. It looked for all the world like a John Hinde postcard depicting an over romanticised view of Ireland, which if it ever existed certainly doesn’t exist now. My grandfather would have cut turf by hand. Cutting just enough as was needed at a rate that allowed the bog to replenish. That Ireland is certainly is gone. By Dan Boyle.

Ireland 'pimped out like prostitutes' to 'war criminal' Obama

Video: Addressing Taoiseach Enda Kenny on Wednesday, Clare Daly TD was harshly critical of Ireland’s “unprecedented slobbering” over the Obama family during their visit to Ireland during the G8 summit. Ms Daly described Barack Obama as a “war criminal” and said Ireland was “pimped out like prostitutes” during their visit. Michelle Obama and her daughters met Bono’s family for a high-profile lunch in Finnegans pub in Dalkey on Tuesday. (Photo courtesy of Mary Mitchell O'Connor TD)

Ethics in banking a question of regulation

Last week former Taoiseach and President of IFSC Ireland, John Bruton, said that the banking industry needed "to focus on ethics rather than regulation". As someone who strongly supports the idea of ethical codes and a more central role for ethics in business, I found this remark and the casual way it was accepted unhelpful on many levels. Ethics are not an alternative to regulation; rather regulation is needed to support ethical behaviour.

It's Capitalism Stupid

"It's Capitalism Stupid" is the tag line for a festival organised by the Colletivo Prezzemolo -researchers and workers at the European Institute University (EUI) - in Florence, Italy which is running from 3 - 12 May, 2013. The festival is deliberately scheduled to take place at the same time and in contradistinction to the annual "State of the Union" conference at the EUI which brings together "leading academics, policy makers" and other members of the establishment to discuss matters EU from the insider perspective.

Opportunity to create a People's paper

FC Barcelona is one of the most successful football clubs in the world and, although like most of the big football clubs around the world. Unlike almost all of the major Premiership clubs elsewhere in Europe, FC Barcelona is not owned by an oligarch or even by a cabal of oligarchs, is owned by its 175,000 members who each pay an annual membership fee of around €200. It is a not-for-profit organisation; nobody gets paid dividends, although the players are among the richest in the world. BY Vincent Browne.

Unions must represent people bearing brunt of austerity

The exchequer deficit in Ireland was €1.6 billion at the beginning of 2008. The exchequer deficit at the start of 2013 was €15 billion. Over the corresponding five years from 2008-2012 inclusive, the total 'savings' by way of public sector pay cutbacks, public spending cutbacks and tax increases amounts to €24.4 billion. By Dr. Tom O'Connor of Cork Institute of Technology