The Irish government has come out swinging --not against the banks and the institutions that caused the IMF intervention but the least well off and poor in society.
Unemployment benefits will be slashed, old age pensions adjusted, social welfare programs cut by $4 billion all to fill the yawning deficit gap that has opened up.
They need to raise $20 billion over the next three years to satisfy the IMF folks.
The state pension age will be raised, the Value Added Tax which hits the poor disproportionately, will rise and a new property tax that will also fall unfairly on the less well off will go into effect.
The weakest in Irish society with the least resistance to offer are in effect being blamed for the excesses of the richest .
The government says its plan is to "incentivize work and eliminate unemployment traps”.
I cannot for the life of me see where this plan incentivizes work. Everyone in the country will be poorer, there is no jobs component to this package, no stimulus spending.
Everything is cut and tax. I don't see where the job growth will come from.
What it in effect has done is deflate the economy to an incredible rate. There will be layoffs in the public sector, which were probably inevitable, social welfare payments cuts and decreases in minimum wage.
There are huge increases in taxes across a number of categories, all of which will function to take money out of the economy, cut spending and create deflation.
There are also huge cuts in cultural programs and tourism spending, two of the key areas that the government has repeatedly
said will be growth engines.
It sure doesn't look like that now.
This will get very ugly over the next few months.