Fianna Fail opposition spokesman on social welfare Willie O'Dea noted recently that large numbers of social welfare applications denied initially are granted on appeals after long delays of up to six months,which suggests the original denials were spurious and done for budget cost savings. If so,some enterprising barrister might have a case for a class action lawsuit for wrongful denials and compensation for the applicants left destitute.
If the public gets the impression that waiting periods for social welfare are six months,many people may be panicked into a massive jump in savings and consumer spending could be hit hard or even collapse with dire consequences for the economy.
Because the social safety net of social welfare and unemployment insurance is taken for granted,the government may forget a lesson of economic history-that social safety nets helped put an end to economic depressions.
America in 1929 had no social safety net and as soon as people scented an economic downturn in the stock market crash, they stopped spending,triggering the Great Depression. Within weeks,Henry Ford was forced to shut down the huge Detroit car plants where production was concentrated as car sales collapsed across the country.