Sicilian Notes has the 'Are you an Irish Conservative' quiz, which I am unashamedly using to distract away from all of the work due on Thursday. In a new and unfamiliar departure, here is a political quiz on an arts blog;
1. Are taxes too high?
I worked as an accountant for a while and used to deliver cash wages to staff – watching their faces drop when they realised how much they had after tax was never fun. I don't think income tax is too high but it should go further, cover other domestic charges such as water, refuse etc.
2. Should we worry about absolute poverty rather than relative poverty?
Yes. There is a huge difference in having no food for your family and not having a second holiday this year.
3. Do we need to scrap the state-run TV station?
No. RTE serves a purpose, and produces some of the best programmes in terms of Irish political and cultural debate, not everything is going to be good, but it is necessary.
4. Was it a mistake to rule out nuclear power?
No. Although there are no real alternatives yet the risks and expenses in nuclear power seemed too great.
5. Is the Irish military underfunded?
No. Unless we're planning to change our neutral status I can't see why the military should need more.
6. Is gay marriage a bridge too far?
No. (I have lots to say here, but that is for another day)
7. Has the partnership model become a problem?
8. Are fees the solution to underfunding in universities?
As a student, my answer is no. Realistically, I think I would still say no.
9. Does neutrality prevent Ireland from acting responsibly internationally?
10. Has the peace process failed to hold Sinn Fein to full democratic standards?
No, although I am sceptical of all things Sinn Fein.
11. Is religion and the Catholic Church in particular a force for good?
At its root all religion is a force for good, however the ideals and beliefs are lost after a few years. The Catholic Church is a prime example for this, at its core 'Treat everyone as you would like to be treated'. In reality, where is that visible, even in the clergy?
12. Do we criticize America too much?
Probably yes, but it is more fun to blame the US for all international problems than to try and solve them.
13. Are private health accounts with support for low earners the solution to the health system?
It is a start. But the problems in the health system are much deeper than just handing out private health insurance. (Is that a yes or a no?)
14. Would we be better off if the unions were less powerful?
Yes. But eventually there would be a need for them again and they may come back even more powerful, then what?
15. Is Michael O'Leary an example of a good businessman?
Have you ever flown Ryanair? He is a very good businessman, too bad about the airline though.
16. Should we be wary of supporting a more powerful EU?
17. Should we trust the actions only, and not the words, of the IRA and Sinn Fein?
In my earlier scepticism, yes.
18. Was the Aer Lingus partial privitization insufficient and overdue?
Overdue, I'm not sure if it was insufficient.
19. Do we need the death penalty for the worst crimes?
No. (That's as bad, if not worse, than the gay marriage question)
20. Should the overall tax take fall by a third or more?
By Richard's scoring I'm a floating voter, I'm not quite sure what that means exactley but it doesn't sound too savoury.