• Twitter
  • Facebook
News-Sentinel.com Your Town. Your Voice.
Opening Arguments

Go, Irish

Ireland is thriving. Guess why:

The relatively new emphasis on entrepreneurs in Ireland is the culmination of nearly four decades of government policies that have lifted the economy from centuries of poverty to modern prosperity.

The change began when Ireland entered the European Union in 1973. In subsequent years, the government rewrote its tax policies to attract foreign investment by American corporations, made all education free through the university level and changed tax rates and used direct equity investment to encourage Irish people to set up their own businesses.

“The change came in the 1990s,” said James Murphy, founder and managing director of Lifes2Good, a marketer of drugstore products for muscle aches, hair loss and other maladies. “Taxes and interest rates came down, and all of a sudden we believed in ourselves.”

For the slow among you, "taxes came down" means taxes were cut. Did you get that, Ms. Clinton, Mr. Obama, Mr. Edwards, Mr. Huckabee, Mr. McCain? No, of course not.


Bob G.
Fri, 01/18/2008 - 11:29am

Well, there's that...along with the cessation of fighting between the Protestants and the Catholics.



Fri, 01/18/2008 - 12:04pm

Ahem. "...made all education free through the university level..."

So who paid for it, then? I think it's a huge leap to pretend that Ireland is some sort of taxpayer's utopia.

What prosperity and education have done for Ireland -- and this gets far too little attention -- is pretty much wipe out the religious warfare that was until recently the Irish way of life.

Fri, 01/18/2008 - 1:16pm

Like Alex pointed out, this is a remarkably disingenuous post. Ireland as a heaven for tax cutters? Since when? If anything, the lessons the Irish provide are that progressive taxation policies that don't squeeze out the working and middle classes in favor of top income brackets have resulted in a country with commendable stability and rising incomes all around. Irish taxes aren't high compared to Scandinavia, but that hardly means that Ireland represents an anti-tax dream state. This seems more to validate the policies of people like McCain and Clinton (though not Huckabee), not repudiate them.

Leo Morris
Fri, 01/18/2008 - 1:29pm

Disingenuous? "The tax on corporate profits, though, is 12.5 percent, which is an incentive to own a business. And government helps out."

Sat, 01/19/2008 - 12:10am

Obviously, the most valuable thing that a government can do is capitulate to business interests, money being the the most important factor in human activities. All this in a country which has banned smoking in all public places. The age of miracles really isn't over yet, apparently.

Sun, 01/20/2008 - 11:43pm

Actually, I am curious about paying for education through university level. Would adults returning to college be able to attend for free if they had been liad off and needed to learn new skills sets?
Thanks for all answers!