THE FISCAL Stability Treaty presents us with a stark choice: vote ‘yes’ for long-term austerity, economic stagnation, unemployment and emigration, or vote ‘no’ for a programme of economic stimulus with hope for the future, Mr Thomas Pringle T.D. told a public meeting organised by the Peoples Movement in Sligo this week.
The Donegal deputy said “The Treaty specifically subordinates the Irish state to the economic programme laid down by the core euro states. It outlaws deficit financing, even when such is appropriate in either a Keynesian or a socialist model.
“If it had applied in the Thirties and Fifties, the Great Depression would have been permanent, and Seán Lemass’s Second Programme for Economic Expansion would never have happened.” he said.
The Vice-President of the Dublin Council of Trade Unions, Mr Mick O’Reilly, who also addressed the meeting said “The proposed new Treaty is in reality an austerity treaty – it is an undemocratic attempt to institutionalise austerity across Europe. Its ‘Fiscal Compact’ would deny the right of member state governments to run a ‘structural’ budget deficit of more than 0.5%. This would remove the democratic right of national parliaments to decide national budgets, with that power shifting to the unelected European Commission and European Court of Justice. This would be a fundamental transfer of power away from elected governments.”
Cllr Declan Bree, who presided at the meeting said “The imposition in the treaty of a permanent right wing economic ideology; the limitations on social investment; the subservient position of our Oireachtas; and the prioritisation of the needs of the banking sector are clearly unacceptable and must be rejected. It will tie the hands not only of this government but of all governments into the foreseeable future as regards economic policy.”