Public Expenditure Minister Brendan Howlin made some positive comments this week on the need to revive confidence in the economy and to get people spending again. Get more people spending increases the flow of monies, thus creating the stimulus required to generate new employment.
In this respect, the Wexford TD’s public utterances demonstrate real leadership, and who knows, comments of a similar strong nature by the Taoiseach in recent weeks might have steered the Seanad Referendum in a different direction.
Minister Howlin’s comments, ahead of a Budget which may not have as much penury as was previously speculated, were timely: if the public are spending more money, then the Government in turn would not have to implement as many deep cuts.
Higher spending would, in all likelihood, improve the standard of living while also improving the tax take, which in turn provide much-needed support for the public finances and would lessen the depth of coalition (or Troika)-sanctioned cuts.