Order of Business (Continued)

Tuesday, 11 June 2013

Seanad Éireann Debate

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(Speaker Continuing)

[Senator Michael Mullins: Information on Michael Mullins Zoom on Michael Mullins] There is a need for such a debate. I refer in particular to taxes that relate to the creation of employment. On the one hand, all of us have seen how small businesses are struggling in our towns and, on the other, a change in the VAT rate made a significant difference to tourism related activities. We must examine the impact of VAT rates on retailers. Over the weekend I met a number of business people who believe the 2% increase in the VAT rate had a severe impact on the spending power of customers in the retail sector.

  I again ask the Leader to arrange for the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation to update the House on the programme for job creation. In a positive development, Ireland has been rated as being in the top ten in the latest International Chamber of Commerce open market index, which ranks countries by their openness to trade. We are ranked eighth out of 75 countries and come fifth in Europe, behind Luxembourg, Belgium, Malta and the Netherlands. Given that the Taoiseach set a target of making us being the best small country in which to do business by 2016, we have a bit of work to do.

Senator Marc MacSharry: Information on Marc MacSharry Zoom on Marc MacSharry I note the Minister for Health is not available today. We need a debate on men's health in light of the report that men are more likely to die of cancer than women. This might be a surprise to many people.

  It brings me no pleasure to call for a debate on the conduct of the Taoiseach in recent weeks. My comments refer to all those who serve in this House, particularly those who served in the previous Senate, such as the Leader, who is the best Leader I have seen in my 11 years here, the Cathaoirleach, Senator Bradford, Senator Healy Eames, Senator Norris - the father of the House - and others who have been here for more than ten years. It is objectionable in the extreme to hear somebody who has as much to do with the lack of reform in this House through the generations as anybody else accuse the Seanad of doing nothing to stop the excesses of the Celtic tiger era. Even as a Fianna Fáil person, we in the north west, and Connaught in particular, were never so proud to have a Taoiseach from our part of the country. Since then, however, his contribution has effectively set Knock airport on the path to destruction. We see him clowning around Europe, acting like a clown it has to be said, and turning the Government and the office of Taoiseach into a circus ring.

Senator Marie-Louise O'Donnell: Information on Marie-Louise O'Donnell Zoom on Marie-Louise O'Donnell I object.

An Cathaoirleach: Information on Paddy Burke Zoom on Paddy Burke Have you a question for the Leader?

Senator Marc MacSharry: Information on Marc MacSharry Zoom on Marc MacSharry I asked for a debate on the Taoiseach-----

Senator Marie-Louise O'Donnell: Information on Marie-Louise O'Donnell Zoom on Marie-Louise O'Donnell I object to that kind of language in regard to the Taoiseach.

Senator Marc MacSharry: Information on Marc MacSharry Zoom on Marc MacSharry -----acting like a clown.

An Cathaoirleach: Information on Paddy Burke Zoom on Paddy Burke Have you a question for the Leader?

Senator Marie-Louise O'Donnell: Information on Marie-Louise O'Donnell Zoom on Marie-Louise O'Donnell He is not acting like a clown. How dare you?

An Cathaoirleach: Information on Paddy Burke Zoom on Paddy Burke Senator MacSharry, without interruption.

Senator Marc MacSharry: Information on Marc MacSharry Zoom on Marc MacSharry He is acting like a clown. When somebody looks like a clown, talks like a clown-----

Senator Marie-Louise O'Donnell: Information on Marie-Louise O'Donnell Zoom on Marie-Louise O'Donnell If the Senator has to use-----

Senator Marc MacSharry: Information on Marc MacSharry Zoom on Marc MacSharry -----performs like a clown and insists on turning the Government into a circus ring-----

(Interruptions).

Senator Catherine Noone: Information on Catherine Noone Zoom on Catherine Noone That is a bit rich coming from a member of Fianna Fáil.

Senator Marc MacSharry: Information on Marc MacSharry Zoom on Marc MacSharry It is a bit rich that the man who now leads the party, looking back at the manifestos of 2002 and 2007-----

An Cathaoirleach: Information on Paddy Burke Zoom on Paddy Burke Senator MacSharry.

Senator Marie-Louise O'Donnell: Information on Marie-Louise O'Donnell Zoom on Marie-Louise O'Donnell On a point of order-----

Senator Marc MacSharry: Information on Marc MacSharry Zoom on Marc MacSharry He nominated you as a Senator and when you are here as long as me, you will not make sense of the fact that Fine Gael demanded-----

An Cathaoirleach: Information on Paddy Burke Zoom on Paddy Burke Senator MacSharry.

Senator Marc MacSharry: Information on Marc MacSharry Zoom on Marc MacSharry -----in 2002 and 2007 and that is what drove this economy into the ground and the Government of that day.

An Cathaoirleach: Information on Paddy Burke Zoom on Paddy Burke Senator MacSharry, respect the Chair.

Senator Marc MacSharry: Information on Marc MacSharry Zoom on Marc MacSharry Yes.

An Cathaoirleach: Information on Paddy Burke Zoom on Paddy Burke I ask the Senator to resume his seat.

Senator Marc MacSharry: Information on Marc MacSharry Zoom on Marc MacSharry I am not quite finished. It is important-----

An Cathaoirleach: Information on Paddy Burke Zoom on Paddy Burke You are way over time.

Senator Marc MacSharry: Information on Marc MacSharry Zoom on Marc MacSharry I think it is important to state that, out of respect for this House, you are a close confidante of the Taoiseach that he would acknowledge the contribution that you made during your time here, and that of the Leader, or else, frankly, ye should bloody well resign because he is undermining the contribution you and the Leader have made over the years.


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