The Government makes the case, overall, that the budget is fair; income tax has not been raised.
The effects of the budget will cost my wife and I — and thousands of others — the following:
* Medical insurance relief (at 20% tax over €2000), €480 approx.
* Medical prescriptions, (€144 per month) €1,728.
* Additional property tax in 2014, €382.
* Telephone (€9.50 per month), €114.
Also, from Jul 1, the Government sneakily imposed additional taxation, amounting to €1,000, approximately.
So, in 2014, I, an 82-year-old pensioner, and my wife, will face an additional deduction by the Government, amounting to €3,704, no matter what gloss Noonan puts on it. This is nothing other than being taxed.
The Dirt increase, to 41%, is designed to incentivise investment. This is laughable. One would need €500,000 to €1,000,000 for this purpose or a looney, very friendly bank manager. Pensioners have to hang on to their gratuities for the rainy day and for their burials (more so now!).
The mordant Minister for Finance, Michael Noonan, relentlessly follows us to the grave-diggers and the grave, terminating the bereavement grant. We will now be feeling more bereaved than ever.
Noonan also cynically refers to those holding ‘gold-plated’ medical insurance policies. Does this imply that An Taoiseach Enda Kenny and Minister Noonan rely on the public health system, despite their fine salaries and pensions? If I depended on the public health system, I would be long dead.
It is sad that, on the centenary of the 1913 Lockout, the so-called socialist party is in cahoots with a dedicated right-wing party. Howlin, the son of a trade union official, is pitiful in endeavouring to assert himself.
Noonan, echoing a pristine Fianna Fáil dictum, said we should cherish all our children. What about the old folk? Are ye right there Michael, are ye right?
Noonan’s budget speech, in many areas, is elusive, allusive, delusive and disingenuous.