Articles tagged with: Economics

Irish Banking: Rediscovering Values for Rebuilding and Renewal

on Thursday, 02 June 2011. Posted in Issue 66 New Dáil: New Dawn?

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Irish Banking: Rediscovering Values for Rebuilding and Renewal

Ray Kinsella & Maurice Kinsella

April 2011

Introduction

This article explores the deconstruction of the Irish banking system. It discusses the ‘pressure points’ which are reshaping this system, and how these are likely to impact on the wider banking and financial community. This is an important issue in its own right because the constitutive purpose of banking is to support the wider economy, and especially job creation. But it is particularly timely to critique recent events and policies which in combination have served to subvert the development of modern Ireland.

That is hardly an overstatement. After all, the collapse of the Irish economy since 2007 has been on a scale that is unique among developed countries. Moreover, this collapse precipitated the intervention by the European Union (EU), in association with the International Monetary Fund (IMF), leading to a ‘bailout’ agreement that, in exchange for highly conditional financial support, effectively emasculates discretionary fiscal policy, as well as imposing very far-reaching cuts in living standards.

 

The Way Forward for Ireland: A Values Added Tax Policy?

on Thursday, 02 June 2011. Posted in Issue 66 New Dáil: New Dawn?

 

 

pdf iconThe Way Forward for Ireland: A Values Added Tax Policy?

Eugene Quinn

April, 2011

Introduction

The maintenance of a low tax regime was a key tenet of national policy during the years of Ireland’s economic boom. However, there were also demands from many quarters for improved public services and for greater protection for the most vulnerable. For a time, Ireland appeared to achieve the impossible – remaining a low tax economy while spending ever greater amounts on public services. It was a mirage.

International events in 2008 lit the fuse to a crisis that would ultimately overwhelm the State’s finances. But at the heart of our woes was not the international financial crisis but a home-grown problem. Ireland found itself facing a double-sided structural deficit problem, in which the crash in tax revenues was not being mitigated by equivalent reductions in public spending. In particular, the massive growth in unemployment represented a dual blow, with the consequent reduction in tax revenue occurring alongside a huge increase in the number of people dependent on the State for social welfare payments.

 

What Kind of Society? A Better Vision Needed

on Thursday, 02 June 2011. Posted in Issue 66 New Dáil: New Dawn?

 

April 2011

Introduction

The people have spoken in the General Election. They have voted in overwhelming numbers for change. They have done so because the philosophy and policies of the past have patently failed and they want no more of them. The new Government will go down the same tired routes at its peril.

The new Government, and all of us, must now ask, and answer, a number of fundamental questions. Do we want a society where economic growth takes precedence over all else? Do we want a society where market forces and the ability to pay dictate whether or not all of our people have equal access to food, accommodation, health care and education? Do we want a society where the distribution of income and wealth remains significantly skewed in favour of the well-off and the powerful? Do we want a society where considerable numbers of children and the elderly live in consistent poverty or at risk of poverty?

 

Working Notes Issue 66 Editorial

on Thursday, 02 June 2011. Posted in Issue 66 New Dáil: New Dawn?

 pdf iconWorking Notes Issue 66 Editorial

In a Statement issued prior to the General Election in February of this year, the Jesuit Centre for Faith and Justice noted that in public discussions in Ireland on how to address the economic crisis reference was frequently made, by politicians and commentators, to ‘the common good’, ‘solidarity’ and ‘sustainability’. The Statement said that while this was welcome, the reality was that the mere articulation of such values was in itself of little consequence, unless there was ‘a corresponding determination to take the decisions and measures necessary to give effect to these values’.

The Programme for Government of the new Fine Gael–Labour Party Government includes many references to values such as social solidarity and equality; indeed, at the outset, the Programme states that both parties in Government are ‘committed to forging a new Ireland that is built on fairness and equal citizenship’.

 

A New Economic Paradigm?

Written by Gerry O'Hanlon SJ on Thursday, 31 March 2011. Posted in Issue 63 A New Economic Paradigm?, 2010

A New Economic Paradigm?

Introduction

The virus of global recession, with its virulent manifestation in Ireland, has raised the question of what antidotes are possible. What lessons can we learn from the past, in order to plot a more secure way into the future? In particular, the question arises as to whether we need to consider a new, more socially responsible, economic model, and not just a reform of the old one, which arguably, despite its undoubted partial successes, has shown itself to be unsustainable.1

A New Economic Paradigm? In the Concrete

on Thursday, 31 March 2011. Posted in Issue 64 What Direction for Recovery?

Towards a New Model

A New Economic Paradigm? In the Concrete – Towards a New Model

A map of the world that does not include Utopia is not even worth glancing at ... (Oscar Wilde)

It is good to remember that utopia is nothing but the reality of tomorrow and that today’s reality is yesterday’s utopia. (Le Corbusier)

Politics left to managers and economics left to brokers add up to a recipe for social and environmental chaos. (Rowan Williams, Archbishop of Canterbury1)

The Great Transition – New Economics Foundation

In October 2009, the New Economics Foundation (NEF), an independent think-and-do tank based in Britain, published The Great Transition,2 its version of how things could ‘turn out right’ by 2050. The transition in question is to an economic model capable of responding to the situation of crisis that we find ourselves in and based on the values outlined in the first article in this series, published in the March 2010 issue of Working Notes.3 The model contains seven major steps, some aspects of which I will outline briefly.

 

Working Notes Issue 64 Editorial

on Thursday, 07 October 2010. Posted in Issue 64 What Direction for Recovery?

October 2010

Working Notes Issue 64 Editorial

Even as the global economy shows signs of recovery from the financial and economic shocks of the past two years, worrying questions remain. Just how robust is the recovery: is it possible we may yet face a ‘double dip’ recession? How long until economic growth translates into a fall in unemployment? How severe will be the social, as well as the economic, impact of governments having to deal with the public debt incurred in order to prevent a deeper recession?

Enough: Foundation for a Moral and Ecological Economics

on Wednesday, 06 October 2010. Posted in Issue 64 What Direction for Recovery?

Anne B. Ryan

October 2010

Waste

Enough: Foundation for a Moral and Ecological Economics

Introduction

How can we live in harmony with nature? How do we stop global warming, the associated climate change and the destruction of ecosystems?

How can we eliminate poverty, provide security and create sufficiency for all the people of the earth?

How do we restore an ethic of care for people and for the earth?

In short, how can we put human and planetary well-being at the centre of all our decision-making?

Co-operatives and the Economic and Environmental Crisis

on Thursday, 11 March 2010. Posted in Issue 63 A New Economic Paradigm?

Dermot McKenna SJ

March, 2010

Co-operatives and the Economic and Environmental Crisis

Nora Herlihy with President de Valera at the signing of the Credit Union Act, 1996
© Irish League of Credit Unions

Introduction

The current economic and financial crisis has had an enormous impact across the world. Here in Ireland, we have experienced the harsh consequences of a sharp reversal of economic growth. During 2009, there was estimated fall of over 7 per cent in GDP, and of more than 10 per cent in GNP. Both measures had already shown a drop of 3 per cent in 2008.

A crisis in the Irish public finances has seen our national debt rise dramatically to well over €20 billion; the ratio of General Government Debt to GDP, calculated to have been just over 25 per cent in 2007, soared over the past two years to reach an estimated 65 per cent by the end of 2009.1

Bad Business

on Thursday, 11 March 2010. Posted in Issue 63 A New Economic Paradigm?

Seamus Murphy SJ

March, 2010

Bad Business

Ethics essential in the ups and downs of economic life
© istock

Crisis

Much of the world is going through the biggest financial and economic crisis since the Great Depression of the 1920s and 1930s.  While the crisis is not as severe as that of the Great Depression, its effects are more widespread, owing to globalisation and the interconnectedness of national economies.  It is causing much suffering, as investments that were people’s savings for the future are wiped out, jobs in both the private and public sectors are lost, and public finances come under severe strain.

In this, a follow-up on an earlier Working Notes article which was written before the current financial and economic crisis,1 I explore some of the ethical issues that arise.

Working Notes Issue 63 Editorial

on Thursday, 11 March 2010. Posted in Issue 63 A New Economic Paradigm?

Issue 63 Editorial

Even as the global economy shows signs of recovery from the financial and economic shocks of the past two years, worrying questions remain. Just how robust is the recovery: is it possible we may yet face a ‘double dip’ recession? How long until economic growth translates into a fall in unemployment? How severe will be the social, as well as the economic, impact of governments having to deal with the public debt incurred in order to prevent a deeper recession?

Justice in Recession: Statement on the Current Economic Situation

on Wednesday, 29 October 2008. Posted in Issue 59 In Recession who will be left Stranded?

Justice in Recession: Statement on the Current Economic Situation

November 2008

Introduction

 

It is no exaggeration to say that people in Ireland are in a state of shock at the suddenness and severity of the downturn in the country’s economic situation. In so far as we thought about ‘Ireland after the Celtic Tiger’, most people assumed it would be a time where growth would be slower, but more sustainable, where there would be ‘a soft landing’ for house prices, and where the gains of the boom years would be consolidated. We did not envisage an economic recession, a deep and widespread crisis in the financial system, a sharp rise in unemployment, and considerable anxiety about the future.

 

Working Notes Issue 59 Editorial

on Wednesday, 29 October 2008. Posted in Issue 59 In Recession who will be left Stranded?

November 2008

pdf Editorial

‘The past is a foreign country: they do things differently there’, L.P. Hartley famously wrote. Right now in Ireland, however, it is the present that feels like a foreign country. This is a place where we must adjust our assumptions and expectations and learn, or relearn, the skills to enable us deal with an economic situation that is the reverse of the favourable one to which we had become so acclimatised.

 

Doing Business and Doing Good: The Role of Business Ethics

on Tuesday, 18 April 2006. Posted in Issue 52 Mental Illness in Irish Prisons: A Solitary Experience?, 2006

Seamus Murphy, SJ

April 2006

 

Down the ages, some currents of thought have seen business as incapable of being honourable, and barely able to be honest, since honest business will always be at a disadvantage in competition with dishonest business.  On this view, neither business, banking, investment, profit-making, nor entrepreneurial initiative promote the good of individuals or society.  Business ethics is doomed to be at best ineffectual, at worst a sham.

Connecting Debt and Trade

on Tuesday, 07 December 2004. Posted in Issue 49 The Garda Síochána Bill 2004 (Somone will be watching you!), 2004

November 2004

Connecting Debt and Trade from a Development Perspective
Peter Henriot SJ*


How Do We Define ‘Development\'?


Before examining the connections between debt and trade, it is worthwhile to reflect on what we mean when we talk about a ‘development perspective\'. It is now widely accepted that economic models that are not people-centred have led us to the current global crisis of deepening poverty, degradation of rights, destruction of the environment and increased danger of conflict and terrorism.

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In February 2016, the Jesuit Secretariat for Social Justice and Ecology and for Higher Education in Rome published a Special Report on Justice in the Global Economy. The Report was compiled by an international group of Jesuits and lay colleagues in the fields of social science and economics, philosophy and theology. This issue of Working Notes is a response to the Report. Read full editorial

Working Notes is a journal published by the Jesuit Centre for Faith and Justice. The journal focuses on social, economic and theological analysis of Irish society in the areas of . It has been produced three times a year since 1987, and all of the articles are available in full on this site. Read More..