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July 29, 2015


Gregori Meakin

Similar to water, childcare is an issue that cannot be driven by the market based on affordability but instead be seen as a necessity that should remain in public ownership and funded through taxation. The Goverment's plan to have everyone pay for everything out of their own pockets with the carrot of low taxation has generated nothing but inequality in Ireland. In moving the models that other countries have requires that ALL people have the RIGHT to pay taxes that are affordable either because they can afford to or because the benifits come back around to assist in day-to-day supports like childcare, education, healthcare and water.FG/Lab, and previous Goverments have always pushed down taxes at the expence of services. This has to change as we come out of the recession so that those who suffered and paid the most benefit the most moving forward.


This is an excellent proposal Michael, and one that needs significant publicity. Too many people have allowed themselves to be convinced that problems with the water system stem from people not being charged regressively for ordinary (ie, non-industrial levels) usage of water, on a phoney 'polluter pays' principle, rather than a chronic lack of infrastructural investment.

sam nolan

This proposal for the establish of a NWA is an example of what the left has
been slow to develop,alternative ideas for
public enterprise investment.
We have conceded the field to the privite sector, especially
foreign multi nationals.

Michael Taft

Sam, Ciaran – as with most countries, water is paid for out of a mix of household/business charges and general taxation. Denmark is the exception with all of the water and waste system paid for by charges. I have not researched the levels of charges which would be in addition to taxation so Ciaran’s comments are helpful. There is a general argument that people should ‘pay for their services’. I won’t go through the arguments that we can pay for these through general taxation, hypothecated general taxation or servicecharges; all countries have a mix of two or three of them. However, with the effective personal taxation rate having risen by nearly 25 percent since the crisis (at a time of rising taxation and falling real wages), the introduction of another charge/tax/levy would be socially inequitable and economically inefficient – especially as overall personal taxation rates are close to the EU average. We need to get a boost in expenditure for public services and social protection and we should, like almost all other EU countries, seek to raise the social wage or employers’ PRSI. Irish employers, through corporate taxation and the social wage, make a minimal contribution to society compared to employers in other countries. Let’s start there and see what we need down the line.
Eamon – you are correct that wage equality is key to the Nordic model. You may be interested in this blog which I showed that if the wage structure in the private sector mirrored that of the public sector, there would be greater wage equality and all the benefits that flow from that. . This shows that public sector workers at the higher deciles actually suffer a loss compared to their private sector counterparts. While there are issues of wage inequality in the public sector – which the Haddington Road Agreement has attempted to redress by favouring the low-paid in the pay cuts reversal process – the inequality issue is primarily a private sector issues; not only in regards to wages, but labour rights and collective bargaining as well.


Let us not forget the most important part of the Eurostat findings and this is something even the government are avoiding answering and the media have it seems not got as yet That important fact been .They must remove government control and
its power to appoint board members and operations. in this round about way they are saying it must be privatised with no government department taking any part.. Privatisation is something they said was never on the cards.They have been caught in another monster spoof

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