To be honest I haven’t bothered to study the upcoming EU Referendum in any detail. Unfortunately, I feel that it’s an issue that’s slightly beside the point, or points.
If we pass the referendum we’ll be able to keep borrowing and mis-spending money that will someday have to be paid back. This is a bad thing. If we don’t pass the referendum then we’ll potentially be forced into a spending hard stop at a bad time. This is also a bad thing. As long as Ireland remains within the Euro and the Euro remains a hard currency neither of these outcomes is desirable. If the govt had decided to take better control of spending and to put some morality behind the spending decisions then we’d potentially have some control over our fate. They haven’t and we don’t. Our future depends on the govt doing the right thing, not on either of the two possible outcomes of the referendum.
Meantime, it’s downright scary to watch the lies and evasions of the parties in their various positions pro and con. The government parties keep pushing the tired old line of jobs and stability. As if anyone believes that any more. FF is largely irrelevant. SF and the parties on the left keep saying that people should “vote against austerity”. But they don’t suggest where all the money is going to come from if we are to avoid austerity. They’re engaging in their usual bulls**t and are able to get away with it – even to benefit from it – because the government parties are being so disingenuous too.
Now, of course their main idea is that we can “vote against austerity”. This is nonsense. The idea that we can “vote against austerity”, at least as an individual nation, is as ludicrous an idea as “voting for better weather”. There are some things that democracy cannot affect. If you are poor, you cannot simply vote yourself rich. If you are ugly, you cannot simply vote yourself beautiful. You can try, but it won’t work.
Meantime, the govt is borrowing and planning to borrow huge sums of money and to spend it on excessive public sector pay and excessive welfare levels. The people who will receive this money will be happy but the economy that will have to pay it back is being suffocated.
Of course if we can achieve a wider European settlement then things can change, but that’s a discussion for a different day.