Before Greece, before Spain, before Germany, France, or even Britain there was Ireland. Just two years ago, the Heritage Foundation placed Ireland in the top ten of its "Index of Economic Freedom." That was two years after the "Celtic Tiger" that was the Irish economy had been effectively neutered. After a bubble-driven boom similar to ours, Ireland became the first Eurozone country to enter a recession in 2008 — its first in 25 years. What Heritage called "sharp economic adjustments" in 2010 turned out to be the first step down Ireland's road to ruin, and the beginning of "Disaster Capitalism's" catastrophic success in Europe (also known as "austerity").
Whether the American conservatives keep referring to to Ireland as a "success" because or in spite of the above, it Ireland may yet join the Eurozone's austerity backlash. Then we'll find out if the "Celtic Tiger" has been declawed as well as neutered, and just how catastrophic austerity's "success" has been for the Irish.
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