A Late Late Show special dedicated entirely to the subject of the present state of the Irish economy.

Opening the show, presenter Gay Byrne presents a somewhat pessimistic picture of the Irish economy at present.

I am prepared to be devil's advocate and say to you all I stand here representing the many people going into 1986 who are utterly depressed and pessimistic about the economic situation in our country at the moment.

Gay Byrne states that he represents all the people who believe that there is no economic future for an Ireland that is.

Bunched, banjaxed and spifflicated.

 A similar Late Late Show was done in 1985 and Gay Byrne's assessment is that the economic situation is now worse than ever.

Senator Michael D Higgins (Labour) is slightly more optimistic but points to the problems of unemployment, education and social inequality. He says that,

What we have to do this evening is to try to understand the extent of the economic problems that we have.

Michael D Higgins says the first problem that needs to be tackled is the rise in unemployment. He also points to high levels of taxation, access to education, social inequality and emigration as areas need to be addressed if we want to create wealth and the economy is to grow.

People are paying enormously high taxes to reproduce a deeply unequal society.

Other contributors on the show included Senator Brendan Ryan (Independent), Tom Murphy Director General of the Irish Federation of the Self-Employed, Bertie Ahern TD (Fianna Fáil), Des Peelo Accountant, Richard Bruton TD (Fine Gael) and Paul Sweeney Trade Union Economist.

This episode of The Late Late Show was broadcast on 3 January 1986. The presenter is Gay Byrne.