Economy

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Education for Emigration: 2015

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A letter accompanied a recent dole payment. It advertised a ‘networking and interview day for Irish Teachers DIRECTLY with UK schools’ (emphasis in original). The exclamation mark in the letter’s heading – ‘Teaching Opportunities in the UK!’ - illustrates neatly how readily, even enthusiastically the Irish state is prepared to export Ireland’s young people in order to preserve the status quo.

Sindo front page belies ESRI report: Austerity for Most, Good Life for Some

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The Denis O'Brien media published a remarkably badly considered Sunday Independent magazine cover story trying to convince us the good times were back. The reality as demonstrated by a recent ESRI report is that while Budget 2015 did indeed make those on high incomes richer it made most people poorer and hit the poorest 10% hardest of all.

The years of crisis have been used to impose a shock doctrine of neo-liberal restructuring of society in Ireland. Our health services have not just been destroyed but it's become all too common to see people trying to fundraise for needed surgery through online fundits. People are sleeping on the streets in freezing conditions right beside buildings which have remained empty for years after being bought up by property speculators. Tens of thousands of young people have been forced to emigrate, tens of thousands more forced onto Jobsbridge - a scheme that provides a massive subsidy to employers at our expense.

Trickle Up Effect Makes One in Fifty Filthy Rich

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The Irish Independent and Irish Times on Thursday, reported on a new study showing that more than one in fifty people living in Dublin are millionaires (in US dollars, and not counting the value of primary residence). Both articles quote an analyst for WealthInsight as saying, "For Dublin itself, an abundance of millionaires could help the city claw back its financial prowess from 2008's collapse."

Presumably the much lauded trickle-down effect is supposed to come into play and make life better for all of us. But with the "Consistent poverty rate" in Ireland standing at 7.7% in the CSO's most recent Survey on Income and Living Conditions (SILC), or one in every thirteen people, we can see how many people are trying to live off the same trickle. The "At risk of poverty rate" is much higher, roughly one in six, which means potentially many more could be trying to sip from that trickle. With "favourable tax" given as a criterion for attracting millionaires, Dublin's high density of millionaires (13th highest in the world, 9th highest in Europe) is clearly no accident.

The Cost of a Crisis – Who pays?

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We’ve recently been informed about the fact that Dublin has 30,000 millionaires living in it, but what do the figures tell us about how the rest of us have coped with this crisis? The National Economic and Social Council actually produced a report on this very subject entitled ‘The Social Dimensions of the Crisis: The Evidence and Its implications.’

The government is continuously telling us that we’ve turned a corner. Recently we were subjected to the new leader of the Labour party desperately trying to spin the line that her party is one that cares; essentially launching the re-election campaign alongside Enda when they did a re-boot of this coalition.

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