Investing in another, better future

The best way to increase our competitiveness, drive down unemployment and repair our public finances is through investment; the fiscal cul-de-sac of austerity will get us nowhere. By Michael Taft.

What if we bought a modern telecommunications system, bringing next generation broadband to every household and business in the country?

What if we purchased a state-of-the-art waste and water system to secure an increasingly scarce resource?

Time to start working on Plan B

A new Central Bank report suggests that the Government needs to abandon its current policies in favour of more effective ones if it wants to return to economic growth, writes Michael Taft

What to do with the windfall

Investing the €800 million saved through the interest rate cut on Ireland's bailout loan, and dispensing with spending cuts, would provide a real boost to the economy. But the Government may avoid such an approach for political rather than economic reasons. By Michael Taft.

Public spending cuts are a political choice

Recent cuts in spending and taxation increases have been blamed on the terms of the EU-IMF bailout. But is the Goverment simply using this as an excuse to deflect blame away from themselves asks Michael Taft

Even the IMF doesn't believe this

The Troika of the European Commission, European Central Bank, and International Monetary Fund have passed Ireland with flying colours in their latest quarterly review. But this does not mean the end of Ireland's financial woes, writes Michael Taft

What exactly are we supposed to spend?

While the Minister for Finance calls on us to spend more, his colleague Richard Bruton is trying to cut the wages of those who have the highest propensity to spend. The Government had better to to work on some joined-up thinking, writes Michael Taft.

Subsidising companies which cut jobs to create jobs?

It gets this weird - the Government is subsidising companies that are cutting their own workforce, all in the name of subsidising job creation.  Nonetheless, the Government will eventually claim that it is a success. It is the classic three-card trick – and we end up getting fleeced. By Michael Taft.

Cutting public sector jobs will not reduce the fiscal deficit

Cutting public sector employment by 23,500 will reduce the fiscal deficit by a paltry 0.3%. By Michael Taft.

There may be all sorts of reasons to cut public services, but reducing the fiscal deficit is not one of them. I repeat: we can cut the number of public sector employees – but it will have only a trivial effect on the fiscal deficit. It will, however, do considerable damage to the economy.