By Martin McMahon
Joanna Tuffy is one of the few politicians who actually ‘gets’ twitter. Joanna deserves credit for consistently engaging with other tweeters. That said, Joanna is currently relying on a TASC report to prove that inequality in Ireland is not THAT bad under Labour.
These are the screen grabs Joanna is using
THE DEVIL IS IN THE DETAIL
So where is the flaw in using the Gini coefficient in relation to Ireland’s income distribution?
The Gini index is only as accurate as the gross domestic product (GDP) and income data that a country produces. Many developing nations do not produce accurate or trusted economic data, so the index becomes more of an estimate. There is also a generally negative correlation between Gini coefficients and per-capita GDP, because poorer nations tend to have higher index figures.
Ireland’s GDP figures are notoriously suspect as is illustrated in the following blog from Financial Times Data –
When one puts the difference between our GDP figures versus GNP figures in context with the other countries Joanna uses in her example, it is blatantly obvious that something is amiss with our GDP figure.A Gini level of 29.9 is very slightly below the EU average, but if, as the data above shows, our GDP figure in real terms is closer to the EU average, then the true factual Gini level is far higher and places us firmly among the most unequal countries in the world.It is disingenuous to rely on the TASC report as a measure of Labour’s success regarding inequality in Ireland.
Source : http://www.dairydairydairy.com/the-view-from-here-blog/clutching-at-straws