Paul Sweeney:The penny is dropping with a crash on the failure of the Government’s deflationary policies – everywhere but in Ireland. Today’s Financial Times main editorial on Ireland sounds like some of the TASC bloggers. It urges the government to cut the ground from the banks' bondholders and to cease its obsession with cutting public spending - “a course that anyway might further harm a growth path that looks set to lag the government’s own projections”.
This comment is in stark contrast, for example to Morning Ireland on RTE which yesterday gave a free ride to a representative of Davy stockbrokers, who was allowed to deliver a real TINA speech - there is no alternative to even more cuts, without any hard questioning or alternative views. Morning Ireland did not point out that Davys is a primary dealer of government debt. Such companies makes millions from buying and selling Irish Government debt. They make a two-way market on Irish bonds and are also market makers in Irish bonds.
This morning, Morning Ireland gave Goodbodys a free ride, but the contribution was less partisan. Goodbodys is not a primary dealer of government debt.
Given the lopsided media debate, it is as well the Financial Times is selling well in Ireland. The Guardian also carried a similar piece on Ireland today, as pointed out by Sinéad Pentony here.
Paul Sweeney is former Chief Economist of the Irish Congress of Trade Unions. He is a member of the Economic Committee of the ETUC and chair of TASC’s Economists’ Network. He was a President of the Statistical and Social Enquiry Society of Ireland, a member of the National Competitiveness Council of Ireland, the National Statistics Board, the ESB, TUAC, (advisor to OECD) and several other bodies. He has written three books on the Irish economy and two on public enterprise, including The Celtic Tiger; Ireland’s Economic Miracle Explained and Selling Out: Privatisation in Ireland, chapters in other books and many articles on economics.