During the Celtic Tiger we based our budgets on artificially inflated property and other tax receipts. We are making the same mistake now – basing our budgets on artificially high taxes and artificially low interest rates. The difference now is that we have €200 billion of borrowing which we have to pay interest on. Despite · the booming economy · the artificially high Corporation Tax returns · the artificially low interest rates Minister Donohue is budgeting for a budget deficit next year. We will increase our borrowing next year because we are planning to spend more than we raise in taxation. The country faces huge risks · When interest rates rise, the true cost of our €200 billion and growing national debt will hit home · When Brexit happens, our exporters could be very hard hit · Trump’s trading policy could hit our exporters and could even result in some of them returning to America This was a missed opportunity to cut expenditure – in particular on social welfare. We need a Minister for Finance who is not afraid to say “We can’t afford it.” The result of this Budget is that we will be in deep financial trouble in a few years and we will need to be bailed out again.