The Irish ambassador to the United States criticized a New York Times columnist for using the term «leprechaun» when referring to Ireland.
On June 7, the newspaper published a column by Paul Krugman entitled «Yelen’s New Alliance Against Madness.»
«So let me tell you about Apple and leprosy,» Krugman wrote, referring to Ireland’s corporate tax system.
This is not the first time the term has been used by the economist, who previously coined the phrase «leprechaun economics» when describing the impact of multinational corporations on Ireland’s GDP.
In a letter to the New York Times, Irish Ambassador to the United States Daniel Mulhall said he was writing for the newspaper to express his disappointment.
Mr Mulhall wrote: «This is not the first time your columnist has used the word ‘leprechaun’ when referring to Ireland, and I consider it my duty to point out that this is an unacceptable slander.»
«I do not agree with Krugman’s disingenuous excuse that the ‘Irish have a good sense of humor’ for his attack on us,» the letter read, adding that «offensive references in a leading newspaper like yours are not funny.»
Mr Mulhall said Ireland was fully engaged in international discussions on corporate tax reform and had changed its tax law in line with new international standards agreed so far.
«More agreement in this area cannot be reached through insults and national stereotypes,» he wrote.
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