EU officials speculate that Ireland may be next to exit the union

Eight years ago, five primary European Union countries made up the bulk of the financially challenged continent.  Beginning with Ireland and ending with Spain, these PIIGS nations as they would be labeled helped start the European banking crisis, and today continue to wallow in unemployment, recession, and austerity.

But with the gates being blown open last month with the UK’s Brexit vote, many economists have been speculating as to which country would be next to leave.  And while Italy, Greece, and France weigh heavy on this balance scale, it is a different nation that may be the next economy to pack up and bail from the EU.

Ireland’s Minister of Social Protection Leo Varadkar says that a number of his colleagues approached him at a recent EU meeting in Slovakia who did not realize “we’re staying in Europe,” in what may be a harbinger of things to come for the Island nation.

Citing a series of “unusual questions,” Varadkar says there is not a big diplomatic effort needed to reassure other countries that Ireland remains committed to staying in the European Union.

“Some of them were asking me ‘is Ireland going to leave the European Union as well?’ So I had to make it very clear that our place is in Europe, our home is in Europe,” said Varadkar.

There exists strong support for the dissenting opinion among the Irish people and her leaders, however. Two weeks ago, Irish MEP Brian Hayes warned that any attempt by bureaucrats in Brussels to force a higher corporate tax rate against the will of the Irish voters would be met with an immediate decision by the country to leave the European Union. - Sputnik News

A week ago, Ireland stunned the global economic community by reporting a growth rate of 26% for 2015, and much of this had to do with their lowering corporate tax rates and welcoming in several new companies who used the lower rates to implement tax inversions.  And a move out of the Eurozone would open even more doors for foreign investment.

Ireland is a fickle step-child of Britain, but more often than not stands with her former master in financial and economic decisions.  And if Britain shows that it can succeed better without the bureaucratic restrictions of both the European Commission and the Euro currency, chances are very likely that Ireland will choose a similar exit strategy because more and more the union is quickly deteriorating to an environment of every man for themselves.

Kenneth Schortgen Jr is a writer for,, and To the Death Media, and hosts the popular web blog, The Daily Economist. Ken can also be heard Wednesday afternoons giving an weekly economic report on the Angel Clark radio show.