June 7, 2009

Moral of the Mayan meltdown

Posted in International Economy · 524 comments ·
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A wonderful aspect about having generation upon generation of an Irish diaspora is that the Irish have been almost everywhere. When Jovani – my guide in the jungle by the ancient Mayan city of Copan – heard I was Irish, his face lit up, and he asked me whether I had heard of John Gallagher.

When I said no, he was visibly disappointed. ‘‘But John Gallagher discovered us,” he said.

In 1834, an Irish adventurer and soldier called John Gallagher was fighting as a mercenary for the Honduran independence movement. In the early part of the 19th century, Latin America was full of Irish adventurers; many fought in the Latin American wars for independence and most of them stayed on (if you are interested in this fascinating part of our history, visit www.irlandeses.

org).Gallagher was one such privateer, fighting in Central America. He was posted with a raggle-taggle regiment to the far north-west of this beautiful country. When he heard the locals talking about the lost city in the jungle, he decided to find out what they were talking about, probably in the hope of finding the buried treasure of the ancient civilisation, the Mayans.

Instead of gold, Gallagher discovered, deep in the rainforest, the most striking city-state of the Mayans. It was almost totally preserved and was the capital of the southern part of the vast, pre-Columbian Maya empire. Gallagher was spellbound by what he saw – the huge pyramids, the enormous acropolis and no less than 28 palaces – all hidden away in the jungle. In 1835, he began telling the world about his vast discovery.

The story of the lost cities in the jungle, which had sustained the Spaniard conquistadors for centuries, grabbed the public imagination.

Gallagher, hardly heard of in his own country, became a hero in Central America, and he is the only non-Mayan to be buried in the city-state and the first to be buried there since the day when the people rose up, burned their own kings and evacuated the great Mayan cities, leaving them to the jungle.

The collapse of the Mayan civilisation has fascinated scholars for years. Why did this vast empire disappear? When you are here, looking at the distinctly Mongol faces of the kings and their ornate statues adorned with hieroglyphics, the question is begged: what happened?

This society was the most advanced in the world 1,100 years ago. The Mayans processed knowledge of mathematics and astronomy far surpassing anything in Europe’s Dark Ages at the time. Their farming methods could sustain much larger urban populations than we could, despite the fact that they did not locate their cities beside freshwater. Their systems of canals and storage allowed them to feed huge populations relying on rainwater alone.

For example, Copan in Honduras had an urban population of 27,000 in the 7th century, when most major European centres hadn’t even been founded. Whatever cities we had contained populations that were fractions of the size of the Mayan metropolises.

Their alphabet was phonetic, and their system of trade linked an empire that stretched more than 1,000 miles over what is now Honduras, Mexico and Guatemala.

This empire lasted for more than 1,000 years and thrived, peerlessly, for 500 years. Then it disappeared.

The last that was seen of the Maya kings and temples was a huge pyre, upon which the peasants burned the noblemen because they believed that the noblemen and priests could no longer hold any sway over the gods. How could they, when children were starving?

The Mayans simply ran out of resources. They cut down all the trees to transport rocks from the quarries to make their ornate temples.

Competing nobility, with each chief trying to show he was the biggest, got involved in what could only be described as an ‘‘arms race’’ to build the most splendid palace. This involved huge amounts of labour, which were taken from the farms and massively reduced the amount of farmers available to keep their agriculture going.

They also cut down huge amounts of wood, causing massive soil erosion and flooding. The mad dash to build the most ornate palace used up enormous quantities of materials. To support this madness, the cities needed to produce enormous amounts of food and water, and they needed to pay for it.

This was the ancient equivalent of people consuming far more than they could afford and getting into a monumental ‘‘keeping up with the Joneses’’ battle, which would ultimately bankrupt them. Interestingly, the Mayan currency was devalued during all this.

They had created an intricate financial system based on the valuable feathers of the wonderfully colourful macaw. The hieroglyphics tell of this system being abandoned during the decline.

So the Mayan society collapsed because there were simply too many people abusing their world’s precious resources, unable to see that in their headlong dash for more luxuries and frivolous spending, they were ensuring the depletion of their resources and sowing their own destruction.

At the time, I am sure, the high priests, atop the sacrificial pyramids, were cheerleading the drive for ever-bigger palaces and penning sycophantic odes to the great men who were building these monuments.

The same thing happened here in our building boom. We used all the resources of the country to build useless monuments fuelled by the vanity of our oligarchs. We imported labour to build houses we didn’t need, and deployed other people’s money to finance these schemes, which we could never sell and now cannot pay back.

We too had our ‘‘arse-kissing’’ high priests in the media, the vested interests network and, of course, our political class, who led the cheer, despite the fact that our country’s resources were being wasted.

As a result of all the hype, the Mayan building continued until the very last brick possible was laid by starving builders, driven by deluded noblemen who were paying everyone in IOUs rather than hard currency. Realising the game was up, the people revolted.

One of the last hieroglyphics shows the noblemen and the high priests waving skulls, surrounded by peasants with torches. This scene was supposed to depict what happens when the peasants finally understand the emperor has no clothes.

Apparently, waving the skulls of previous victims was the traditional way in which the noblemen kept power, warning the unruly peasants that if they came any closer, ‘‘you end up like the last malcontent, with your skull hanging on a thread’’. In the end, the peasants saw through this bluff, and slaughtered the kings and their propagandising high priests. The Mayan empire crumbled.

And the moral of the story is . . .


  1. adamabyss

    Subscribe.

  2. adamabyss

    I recommend reading the book ‘Collapse’ by Jared Diamond for further illustrations of man abusing his own environment, leading to his eventual downfall and death (in various nations).

  3. adamabyss

    I don’t know what the moral is but I would love to see Bertie’s skull being used as a football around the streets of Dublin. Fitz’s skull can be replacement ball as well as those of a whole set of other crooks, liars and scam artists.

  4. wills

    …………….. the world is a cosmic drunk tank!

  5. The moral is ?…..well we have to grow up too and get rid of our fat useless councilors and TD’s as our temples too now are empty and these useless political class have no ideas on what to do , yet in my town we throw out two F.F. only to bring in yet another family ticket .
    Ireland’s older generation need a reality cheque that the money gained from selling their houses was fraudulent and our youth have to learn that they do make a difference and vote out this want to be lords .

  6. Amazing – I recognise the old photo in the newpaper taken almost 5,653 years ago about 3,645 bc . I knew I lost it somewhere .I remember clearly that day that moment when I, with some of my friends from Combat School , left to travel to Atlantis .Our parents were seeing us off and wishing us the spirit of a good journey and gave us our astronomy calculators.Eventually we all settled on Dun Aengus , our new space ship.

  7. adamabyss

    How on earth can the BNP win a seat in this day and age? What does it say about the ignorant masses? Sorry to go slightly off topic.

  8. Tim

    “And the moral of the story is . . .” if you use violence to attempt change, you could lose your entire civilisation, because continuity is required and experience.

    It is no longer about “bashin’ the alpha male over the head with a bone – a more intellectual reaction is required (much though it might appeal to do the “cave-man-thing” to alot of these guys!).

    So, let’s do what John Allen says and “Go Slow”. Move with stealth; pick targets and be the sniper, not the scattergun. One-by-one, we will succeed.

    Like wills says: Peel the onion.

  9. Tim

    Deco, a certain synergy is emerging, I think.

  10. Tim

    The truth means responsibility.

    That’s why they are so afraid of it.

    • Deco

      Exactly. The Irish concept of Management has failed. It has become obsolete. The position olders in the state system have no intention of admitting. Neither have the D4 Bankers, or the small pool of directors running the companies on the ISEQ.

      That is it. The Irish Concept of Management has failed. We should try and learn from the Israelis, or the Chinese in Singapore/Taiwan/etc…And we need to formulate a new concept of management for Ireland to get us out of this mess.

      It is not impossible. In fact it is already achieved in the realms of sport. It is just that it rarely occurs anywhere else in Irish life. So it is within us as a people to do this. The problem is that there are massive institutional factors preserving mediocrity.

      If we look at rugby or hurling we will see that the management approaches in Declan Kidney, or Brian Cody is actually a form of excellence that is completely missing in the running of the country. Just look at the precision and the excellence that these people can achieve. Or look at the genius of the late Vincent O’Brien. These people are geniuses at management. Their like are pushed into the sectors of the economy that cannot be controlled by networks of cronies. Declan Kidney succeeded for years in the more meritocratic Munster rugby, not the class ridden equivalent in Leinster. In fact he showed the way it was to be done, and that actually was doing a favour to Leinster.
      Cody succeeded in Kilkenny in an extremely meritocratic environment where the locals would be demanding his head at the slightest hint of underperformance, and where they would be able to get it also.

      Maybe Cowen might sack all them underperforming ministers and put the Cody or Kidney in charge of running the ‘Department of Enterprise and Employment’. Seriously. At the moment it is run by the female equivalent of Steve ‘Show pride and get behind the green jersey’ Staunton. It is no wonder we are losing.

      I also think that the what has been hapening in the Dail between the Government and the Opposition are the equivalent of Dubs V. Royals yesterday in Croke Park. Both sides seem to be capable of producing nothing more than mediocrity. The joke being, that performance was so dire, that it was a game that both sides deserved to lose.

  11. jim

    The Mayan’s built monuments to Myth’s.Now I can see how in the absence of chronometers etc.it’s important to build something and align it with the Sun and so onn, to tell the time of year for Agricultural reasons…I mean the ancients of Ireland (probably the Allens from Limerick) built Newgrange for this purpose.I can see some bloke being sent around there for a few early mornings,and when the Sun hits Him straight in the puss,He’s out the door saying” thanks bit a jaysus,thats the Winter solstice for this year,I can have a lie onn in the Morning”……But as we know life is never that simple,some gobshite has to turn it into a whole “cult of the leader” to impress the neighbours with His unique wisdom,and thats how it all kicks off.So when you see all these Phallic symbols all over the World ,you can be sure some fu.ker was there already with some sort of auld ponzi scheme that finally collapsed….Maybe Tim is right and ZANU-FF have a “unique wisdom” on how to run a Country, Maybe Linehan is right and FF failures at the polls are down to the tough decisions they are making,putting Country before Party Electoral sucess……NNNNNAAAAAAAA sorry boys them auld Ponzi dogs yere trying to flog to the People of Ireland just wont hunt.

    • Tim

      jim, ah……… go ahead and tell us your solution? I love your posts but cannot be bothered arguing against them; 1) Because you are right; but, 2) Because you are not QUITE right.

      So, go ahead, jim…… tell us your solution………?

      • wills

        tim – let me jump in there on behalf of jim, the solution is very simple. FF step down, call an election, FG elected into power with GL at the epicenter and go to work undoing the bonkers banking bailing out decisions made by the FF economic rent seeking traitors who have the disgusting neck as hard as a jockey’s bollix to hail themselves as the gov who can fix this unforgivable treasonous abuse of gov office.

        • wills

          and just to clarify, i’m referring to the rot and incest members of FF who held power not the loyal members who hold true too value the interests of all in the community working away for a change to the old rotten stinking miasma tommy mutton headed bog of allen rot.

          • wills

            legitmate FF’rs like your good self tim need too overthrow these gangsters running the FF shop and drop kick their corrupted way’s over the cliff’s of moher.

  12. jim

    It seems that Gormless has mis-calculated, with the Green Party strategy of waiting until Zanu-FF has lost both bi-elections,and then Zanu-FF becomes more dependant on Green support in Government.Now after the collapse of the “new PD’s with green wellies” in the weekends local Elections,its a case of “hanging together or hanging seperately”…Well I told Gormless to pull plug months ago,while He still had a Wellie to stand onn,but NO,it was back to the good old days for Johnnie boy in the Mansion House,with free fags and whiskey for the boys.Just to bring Gormless up to speed on where were at….Dept.of Enviornment has NO money to spend on anything,ok dumbo.Also when you loose all your seats, as a Party, there is NO Party.As for desperate Dan below in Munster its back to counting squirrells in the Pheonix Park for Him,Economic spokesman my left one…..Tilting at winmills Johnie boy ala “Man of le Mansion House”.

  13. Tim

    jim, so I gather that you do not like ff of the greens…… ok; I get it.

    Now, jim, do you like FG or LAB or both together?

    Do you like SF?

    Do you like the Independents?

    Who would you want to run this country, jim? (and why?).

  14. mishco

    The moral of the story is ….

    you can only drag an analogy so far. I don’t think the Mayans were linked up very much with other groups – their isolation also contributed to their downfall perhaps.

    So they couldn’t confer with other groups facing the same difficulties. They didn’t have an EU or G20 in those days.

    It could be argued that we’re in an even worse situation now because most nations are in a similar predicament all at once, and the global institutions are not up to it.

    But I would argue: a) we (as members of the human race) are more aware than the Mayans were of our finite resources; b) we’re more aware of possible solutions c) we’re more capable of changing those in power for more effectual ones.

    Whether we as members of the Irish tribe ascribe to any of these three propositions is another matter.
    The Mayan analogy certainly applies quite well to we-know-who (the baddies and those who want to string ‘em up).

    Still, a few clear thinkers can analyse the problems (as they do on this site, for example), offer positive solutions – and then they could even get voted in to help bring about the solutions.

    If only people like David would stand for election…..
    Cut off Goliath’s head metaphorically, analogically.
    Ah, dream on! Maybe next time.

  15. Memories – I believe that these people did travel to Atlantis that was then a greater Island that the land of Ireland and UK are a part of now .They brought their own language and culture then at the height of their power that was a superior form than anywhere else .They had left then to go to Atlantis at an earlier time not to flee rather to discover and explore new lands etc.
    Evidence proves that the pagan ( druid) ritual gods of BAAL and MOLACH can be traced from early Aztecs of South America to the Kingdom of Atlantis to the Phoenicians and found it’s way into old Hebrew ”cahna-bal or priest of Baal”
    They left Atlantis after a Great Change and the original circle of Dun Aengus is now a monument made in partnership with man and nature.

  16. Deco

    David McW – a serious article and a serious warning to everybody in Ireland. We need to thinkg and act as individuals in a more responsible manner. There is a strong parallel to David’s article on the island of Reunion in the Indian Ocean.

    I read a letter in today’s Indo. And it hits the spot concerning the underperformance in the Irish state sector. I hope you can look at it. Like the Mayans we have unaccountable, badly informed authority entities. And the beneficiaries (nobles, high priests) are completely clueless to the plight of the ordinary people (peasants). In fact their entire worldview is determined by their need to cover up their own flaws, and intellectual dysfunction.

    http://www.independent.ie/opinion/letters/rte-and-hse-can-learn-from-fiat-1765331.html

    This problem is rampant in D2 (the civil service offices are all headquartered in D2). And if Cowen wants to rescue the economy, then he needs to get his own subordinates (at all levels) to cut out all the nonsense, political games of intrigue, and pretence of actually being necessary to the ordinary people. A lot of these quangos are completely un-necessary. Marian Harkin (I think it was) claimed that in Ireland, the EU regulations are enforced with far more rigour than anywhere else in Europe. This was because the Irish state institutions seem to be in the business of bossing around the citizenry and making sure that there was a climate in which the civil service could justify their existence. Our civil service is bloated, ineffective, and wrapped up in realms of nonsense. And this is Ditherer’s legacy – as he said himself “long may it continue”.

    The quangos need to be rationalized, flattened, and in some cases sent packing/eliminated. And the hierarchies need to be drastically reduced as much as possible so as to make these organizations more responsive to public needs. We should try and learn from countries like Singapore where people take pride in a public sector that is highly competent and free of the sort of nonsense that gives us the HSE management hierarchy. It is utterly absurd that we have 1 in every 6 people in the HSE holding some sort of ‘management title’. In addition there is rampant absenteeism, and rampant nepotism.

    We can face into this crisis by being responsible, by being honest, and by adapting. Or we can use the template proposed now by Gilmore and his buddies, more daft promises, more unsustainable practices etc..That template gave us the 1980s. So we should learn from our history. Though it is by no means gauranteed.

    Let’s hope George Lee stands up and manages to infleunce the Dail into a better way.

  17. Garry

    I voted Joe Higgins for the Euros…. Never thought I would say that, but when the alternatives are FF or continunity FF….

    Anyways, listening to the results I think this old youtube clip could be redone….

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cNDRt-Ze-yU

    A bunker outside Tullamore…. Election results coming in…. Mein Biffo….

    • Deco

      I hope you don’t mind me asking but “what exactly will Joe Higgins do for Dublin or Ireland, when he is in Europe ?”
      We know that we will spend less money on living expenses than “Cabernet Sauvignon” De Rossa. And Higgins will attack all sorts of corporate interests that Gay Mitchel would be falling all over himself to entertain. But what will he do for the people who voted for him except register a protest vote ? Higgins in the Dail, is very tough on the cronyism that predominates in Irish business. But what does he know about Europe ? In fact what do any of the re-lected Dublin MEPs know about Europe apart from the gravy train ?

      I actually have a theory that this will throw Eibhlin Byrne, into the ranks of the disaffected elements within FF, alongside Joe Behan and John McGuinness. Byrne has already fallen out with Michael Martin. This increases the ranks of the disaffected. The Greens and his own ministers will know stick with Cowen through the next twelve months. The disaffected within FF are the only headache for Cowen, and the only possibility of any serious policy change by the government, or any serious accountability for the handling of the ANIB affair.

      We are only seeing progress in baby steps. Slow but eventual.

      • Garry

        Im self-employed and pro Lisbon but voted for him, Higgins is an old fashioned socialist. I dont agree with his policies but it was either him or McDonald; she hardly bothered turning up in Europe, has her eye on building a local empire in Dublin. SF (continunity FF) are chips off the old block, see Martin Ferris’s attempts to start a family dynasty in Kerry.

        Higgins might liven it up a bit out there.

        In my locals, Damian O’Farrell (Independent) topped the poll with the son of Ivor the fiver Callely not getting in despite spending a lot.

        Too bad they are being elected when the cupboard is bare but dozens of FF’ers turfed out and lots of fledgling family dynastics set back……. not a bad day at all…Time for the honest elements within FF to seize control assuming there are any left.

        • Deco

          Garry,
          I am sure that are decent elements in all political parties. Unfortunately the dirt seems to float to the top….

          SF are a shower of crooks, and should be exposed as such. Incidentally SF were not the only ones treating politics as a ‘family trade’ in an almost aristocratic manner – just look at all the candidates who were sons, relatives of previous politicians – in all parties.

          The fact that it has come unstuck on relatives to Micheal Martin etc, is goog news. It makes them realise how vulnerable they are, and will end the arrogance. Ronan Callely is all image and no substance.

          I am hearing that the problem for FF is “communication”. Eh, no, it is incompetent ministers. Simple as that.

          • wills

            Deco – there is a culture of sleaze and corruption and compromise and winks and nods operating throughout FF party and wheeling and dealing and oiling the right contacts. Now, of course there are good FF’rs like tim and yourself Deco who hold true to principle and virtue and common sense, but, FF in the final analysis irrespective of any other parties are guilty of bad Gov. This cannot be said of anyone else cos’ FF are in power. Thus turfing FF out on it’s ear and replacing one of the other parties is now an emergency of necessity. FF is become mentally imbalanced and tyrannical in it’s denial to it’s failures to – day and it’s refusal to listen to a critical view point. Smugness of invincibilty is the hiding place of mediocrity on the run and we are seeing it in spades in UK with Labour. This harking back to the past and finger pointing at other parties is brainless. Politics is all about the present and your only as good as your last performance and FF have become a mafia type operation, I’m looking at this from a neutral p o v, i’m not party affiliated, FF are toxic, and in order to replenish and salvage their future they really do need to run for the hills and cleanse the rot and the longer they stay in power now the more damage they are inflicting on the party and the country.

          • Deco

            Wills…I am not an FF’er – in fact I do not think I gave them number 1 in years. Before Ahern I would have been more open to them. But once CJ’s apprentice moved in, my conscience pushed them back.

          • Deco

            But I am a pragmatist enough to know that if FF improve their level of competence then FG,ILP, SF, etc.. will all have to go two steps higher to keep ahead of them. A backbench rebellion in FF would push that forward. And then George Lee in the Dail will raise FG again. A virtuous circle is of more importance than anything else. Then when we have at least two outfits capable of running the country properly, we will get a better state performance.

            And that is the objective -improving the competence level in the Irish political establishment in baby-steps. At the moment it is far toolow, across the board. The objective is to give the people better results from democracy through raising the bar.

  18. HeavyEnlightenedOne

    One documentary suggested that they had water (rivers nearby, but re-routed, naturally) and that there was a lack of credibility in leaders when they failed to manage volcanos with their pagan rituals.

    A moral if that is what it is, is that evolution has little impact in 1000 years with regard to intelligence. We have great ability, but little coherence and focus – and these factors are ever dwindling too.

    There is a reason why we need groups of people to assemble simple enough thoughts and products, which were done by individuals less than a hundred years ago. There is also a reason why intellectual property is the new gold. Creativity is almost lost.

    Lack of creativity is also a sort of explanation, as to why the economists of the world, sing of the same hymn sheet, or oppose it (its a simple 50-50 as to who is going to be right). This applies outside economics as well and includes the innovation of anything.

    (Explain – three years ago, I set out to compete in the wave energy conversion field and began with research of current models. Awe-struck… when it became obvious that all models globally, are based on a 1978 document – and don’t even attempt to shift from that logic even with professors in many mathematics, engineering and modelling disciplines).
    So talk is progressive, but progress is limited.

    Look too, at the fiasco of the weekend – multiple muppets delighted to get some political power- to do what?
    Or what do they think that they are able to do much better? Apart from a good weeks wages for being involved in a collective chaos machine, with a similar promise if in opposition? The “fortunate” newbies don’t seem to comprehend the scale of the job- not that the old sods could comprehend it either.

    So, can we expect any short-term advances or high speed evolution?

    It seems not.

    • Dilly

      Despite all our new gadgets and i-things, technological advancements has slowed since the early 1900′s. Maybe the universal remote is to blame, it made us lazy, or was it the calculator. As for political change, anything is better than the last shower of brown envelope touting muppets, even though many of the new faces haven’t a bogs what they are doing, I just hope they will give it an honest go.

  19. Malcolm McClure

    And the moral of the story is . . . that the Mayan calendar predicts the end of the world on 21st December 2012.

    So don’t worry chaps–it’s all taken care of. Jesus will return in the London Olympic Stadium just after Bolt wins the 100m in 7.5 secs., watched by the entire world’s population.

  20. MK1

    Hi David,

    The moral of the Mayan meltdown is that nothing is permanent, no ‘regime’ is, neither political nor economic, and that people have the power to change things once enough of them are desperate enough AND aware enough.

    The question for Ireland is whether the FF regime has been wounded for the long-term as these recent elections have exposed or will this be a hiccup in its history which will cause it to reform.

    But there is no sign of reform yet, no mea culpa. FF people are still plying the mantra that they got badly beaten due to unpopular decisions that they had to make. To a man (and woman) they are still sticking their heads in the sand with this line and not recognising the facts nor listening to the people. The facts are the people are not punishing them due to the tough decisions made due to an international-only crisis, but because of the decisions they made to exasperate the crisis before it happened and deepen our resulting recession. FF are still hoping that an election in 2012 will be better than if one was held now. They are desperate and holding on with their fingertips to power.

    For the Green’s, the situation at grass roots level is now desperate. The plain light of day will show that only 3 Green councillors in the whole country remain! This is a kicking and is akin to a near killing of the Greens as a party, as there are bigger parties.

    This will create a clear schism between the Green TD’s (Ministers) and the members. They can do two things, stay in with FF and hope that they wont be wiped out, or they can re-affirm their principles, drop out of government and start building their base again. The Green’s have to realise that if you sleep with the devil and allow your principles to be abused for the sake of power, that you run the risk of your support leaving you in droves. This is what has happened. They too may hope to stay in Government longer. But they need to be careful. It may be the last time they are TD’s. It could be better for them to reform, realise the error of their ways and get back to basics. An interesting time for the Green’s at grass roots level …..

    Tim, as an FFer who has been trying to change things from within, what do you intend to do now?

    MK1

    • Tim

      MK1, I intend to carry on now, with the gathering momentum of change within the party being driven upwards from the bottom; the middle layer at Council level is now joining the groundswell. More TDs are now also joining in behind the scenes.

      I expect this to culminate in a collapse After Halloween, when the final push will be easier after the pensions are secured and the Parliamentary party will be weary. They will accept the pension-consolation-prize and toddle-off.

      Ff will be effective in opposition then and that will be the time to really reform the party. Communication will be key here: the current top echelon has not been listening to the members for a very long time. That is the main reason for the “disconnect” that critics refer to. Our first job is to end this; it has already begun.

      • wills

        Tim – FF council member on liveline (o’doherty) and one could tell through her gritted teeth annoyance at FF head office how gunning for change she was,

  21. wills

    Shout out too FF >>>>>>>>>>>

    Enough with the “we are taking a hit cos of the painful decisions we made too fix the economy”.

    The measures taken by FF to ‘fix the economy’ were in fact measures taken to preserve the status quo’s economic rent fleecing system.

  22. liam

    David, OK, I’ll have a go.

    The moral of the story is… collapse is inevitable once you go down the path of madness and irresponsible leadership that falls in love with its own propaganda. The Irish people went collectively bonkers, the government was power-hungry enough to feed on and encourage this avarice.

    Nothing could save the Mayans and nothing will save Ireland. The destruction of FF at the very least is inevitable, their asses will be handed to them by the same fools who voted for them repeatedly (but its worth remembering that FF are guilty only of giving people exactly what they wanted).

    Its been suggested here that we can avoid the blood letting of the Mayans but that fails to recognise that that was merely the final chapter of the collapse. We’re past the inflection point already, the damage is done. Ireland passed that point some considerable time ago in my view. Ireland is facing as one possible outcome a long haul of budget slashing and economic depression, how long do we think social harmony will remain under such conditions? If this scenario comes to pass, expect somewhere on the spectrum between a massive increase in violent and armed criminality, and organised open revolution.

    An alternative is that we get an informed, dynamic and optimistic leadership that maximises the countries advantages and more than all of that provides some hope. I’m hoping for the latter, but I doubt it can happen unless we stop praying to the high priests of FF/FG. That 88 year old war dog don’t hunt for sure.

    FF has already played its destructive part and is a spent force, at least for the time being. Why would/should FG be any better? There are plenty for whom the old party loyalties are absolute. Nothing will convince them that unquestioning loyalty and support for one or other of the two main political parties is part of the problem, not part of the solution. I tend to disagree. I and probably many others argue the following: There is no substantial social, political, ideological or philosophical difference between FG and FF, and they are at the head of a political system, of their creation, which guarantees their hegemony.

    @Tim, you asked for a solution in a post above, a good and proper question to ask. I can’t really answer that but there is one thing we can do to move things forward, and as an insider it is people like you who are uniquely placed to effect this change, so how about this: End the civil war.

    • Dilly

      “We’re past the inflection point already, the damage is done. Ireland passed that point some considerable time ago in my view.”

      We are well past that point, a friend of mine went to collect his dole money last week. The office located in Co Kildare had run out of cash, and they were turning people away.

      • Philip

        S&P have marked us down from AA+ to AA….Assessment is that the banks will costs us more than we expected. Wills assessment is spot on…we are keeping the zombies alive at all costs…does not matter if you are at risk of cervical cancer, or some old guy looking to keep warm this winter.

    • Deco

      Liam,
      What was the difference between the Irish Labour Party, Fianna Fail or Fine Gael in the last general election ? The positions were often interchangeable.

      I can remember Joan Burton calling on Cowen to cut stamp duty as it was deflating property values in the leafy suburbs. Richard Bruton did not know how to move. McDowell went AWOL on the issue. Cowen was diverting the stamp duty tax into the NDP Capital program, and did not want to stop that as it was part of the FF build plan.

      Also if you are a member of the ILP, it would be good that you state this. HuffnPolly already did. Tim is in FF, and he is very frank about the matter. For the sake of transparency. And if I were a ILP fan, I would be very wary of the devious SF. Just look at the North and how they have outmuscled the SDLP.

      Garrett Fitzgerald, on newstalk has just commented “no party, not one of them grasped the economy, in the lead up to the last general election”. There is a lot of truth in it. That is where we are at, in this country. We have a human resource problem in the Dail. George Lee will alleviate it, but he will not solve it.

      There is a theory that the English Civil War is still in progress. The Parlaimentarian Shires in the South and East of England, are the same regions that vote continually Conservative. And the Cavalier Shires of the North and West are far more likely to return Labour or Lib Dem MPs to Westminister. Strange theory-but it seems to match. Same applies with regard to the CDU doing well in the regions that sided with the Austrians in the Thirty years war that ended in 1618. These faultlines tend to survive a long time. Though they can move around a bit.

      • liam

        Deco, not a member of any Irish or any other political party. This is not a covert plug for the ILP or anyone else. I am simply stating what I see:

        The two major political parties (and many of the minor ones, SF included) of Ireland were formed out of the various factions of the civil war, and have been fighting the same war ever since. You are right, their positions are often interchangeable, they all really on the same polling data and focus groups and consumer surveys. They have completely lost any sense of purpose beyond scoring points off the other guy and staying in power. Labour’s cut and run politics is even more appalling, they are the Italy of Irish politics, if that makes any sense, and their latest resurgence is old fashioned opportunism. The only parties worth talking about are FF and FG, as they are the only ones likely to form a government. I contend that their politics are in fact so interchangeable that there is no meaningful difference between them, but nobody seems to have noticed that the idea of being a supporter of FF or FG is absurd: FG will get elected the next time around because the are not FF. What a way to sell yourself: “vote for me, because I’m not the other guy!”

        Garret Fitzgerald is right, nobody had a handle on the economics, which makes FG at least as guilty of everything one could accuse FF of. It serves only to underline that Ireland is de-facto ruled by a duopoly. The sooner those especially at the grass roots level in both parties realise they are being had with this partisan nonsense, which is proping up a broken system, the better. Am with you on George Lee, and I hope he figures out what his real mission is before he ends up spouting party-political gobbledegook.

        Re english civil war: could be something to it, though its probably confined to the Lib/Con seats. The again, the town where Oliver Cromwell was born returned John Major…

        • Deco

          Liam.
          I like to think that in our community here that we are working along a certain objective – intellectual improvement in the discussion concerning our economy, and communities. And for this reason, the quality is better, if we are as objective as possible. This means we must be free to ridicule and critique all political elements. The objective is to ensure that the intellectual conditions exist for the Irish people to get the most out of the political system. The idea being that the people are the masters of the demcratic process. This is always being compromised by the vested interests and the mediocrity that prevails in both the media and the political establishment. (Today on one newspaper the banner Page 1 headline was “Trap to ask Stephen Ireland to joi team”. Hilarious in the context of what has just happened. Pure subprime fantasy feeding-the message being “never mind the state of the country-just concentrate on the path of the ball full of air around the field”). Ah yeah, Bread and Circuses.

          I think that the civil war did create a faultline. But it it has moved around a bit in the general population. I remember hearing the story of Sean Boylan’s father, who was a general of the Free State army in 1921. WT Cosgrave asked him to be Commander in Chief of the Irish Army.Bylan knew that it was to fight other Irish men. So he declined, and offerred to be a go-between. But passions were so high that this was impossible. If only he had suceeded in talking sense into people at the time, Irish history would have been very difficult. Collins would never have been shot, there would have been no amnosity, etc…

          But really the key element in today’s political establishment is pure opportunism. I like George Lee because he does not seem to be an opportunist. But I am certain that the point will come when others in FG will become jealous of him. Beside all the sweet talk Olivia Mitchel is none too keen,I bet. Lee has already lost some of his independence. I tend to admire certain politicians for the qualities they bring. I admire Marian Harkin because she is a ‘go-fer’ for her people. That is why they vote for her, even though the organized parties outnumber her 4 to 1 with their spend. I admire Joe Behan because he followed his conscience on ANIB against the rest of FF. I admire Brendan Howlin for the time he stood his ground on the Morris Tribunal, and followed his conscience – and the entire contents of the Dail stood aside and left him isolated, though Jim Higgins MEP did support him.

          We let Tim away with being an FF supporter, because he is thinks freely, and is not subordinate to the party leadership. In effect this makes him an internal reformer. We are chasing the intellectual change. Institutional change is extremely difficult – even on a day when the government of the country is in a state of absolute shellshock. One measured, honest, accurate, prescient thougth at a time – that is progress.

          I have become wary of what is happening on the left. There is an alignment in process, and I think that it will result in a soup of negativity, nonsense and soup of absurdity. Gilmore is just like Ahern, going around pressing people’s buttons and trying to connect to our national flaw, our pride. “I am outraged, you deserve better”. Well, no I disagree, Mr.Gilmore. We actually deserve our comeuppance for the way we behaved the last ten years, and we should face up to it. And we should face it, take the lessons on the chin, reform our state institutional framework and be the better of all of that. This upcoming right-left realignment will take the intelligence out of political debate and result in fractions rabble rousing. It is, auction politics at a time of no money. Gilmore is actually behaving a bit like Ahern – irresponsibly, in the the chase for power.

          And the Civil War divide in England is very intriguing. The Lib Dems are strongest in SW England. In the Civil War, the West Country was divided in itself. It was very painful there because brothers took different sides, and stayed in communication with each other throughout. And the local armed forces also divided. The English Navy (mostly based in Devon and Cornwall) sided with Parlaiment. The Navy was always more egalitarean, more industrious, and more meritocratic than the Army in England. Decision making in the navy tended to be more autonomous. The Navy had a value system that was more in line with Parlaimentarians, and their sense of the individual seeking his path to God. Plus there might have been strong religious fervour in Plymouth and the Cornish ports. The Army, like elsewhere in regional England, generally sided with the King. The army was much more hierachicaland much more centralised. Everybody knew that they had totake orders, and never sterr off in their own direction. They were also more inclined to trust tradition and the order of things as they stood.

          Even in the Second World War there was a rivalry between these two British institutions, about who could do the best job and be relied upon in every crisis. Much more results oriented than the behaviour in the Dail. Unfotrunately the Dail has been compromised by opportunism and PR nonsense….

          • Deco

            Actually I think the newspaper headline as an attempt to ressusitate a Saipan Saga version 2. This has gone on for months. They should be informed that Stephen Ireland is not Roy Keane, and the subject does not grip the Irish people like Keane’s response to institutional and authority failure like occurred last week.

          • Tim

            Deco, “We let Tim away with being an FF supporter,……”

            Jeez, Deco, I don’t think I have eevr been let away with it!

            I think that, though largely politely (with a few exceptions), I have been challenged for my affiliation often.

            I am not happy with the EU vote. Diversity is lost: Mary Lou gone and Ganley gone; Ryan gone. Diversity is gone. This is not good.

            No matter. Let’s keep at it.

  23. wills

    Is the debt capacity of POnzi Rep’s government going into a meltdown……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..?

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB124445823288593817.html?mod=googlenews_wsj

  24. News@1 – the remaining decendants of the mayan tribes in Erin Go Broke are recanting with their ancestors the odes of their valuable colourful macaw feathers and preparing to decimate their remaining life support currency they now hold .Tribal leaders are making their ways to Dun Aengus to gather on the cliff edge facing their original homelands in south america and praying that their spirits will guide them safely .Recent pipe smoking sessions among the tribal leaders believe that the cousins of the macaw namely the local colourful PUFFIN will be the source of the new valuable feathered currency and is reputed to fly featherweight in long journeys .This will reduce its A loading capacity.

  25. You dont have to go as far as the Mayans to witness a culture wobble. Long ago we worshipped the same things. Earth, stars, geometry and the Sun.
    The Christian invasion used clever vote management to change perceptions and led to Patrick the Taffy wiping out our Celtic knowledge base.
    The sole beacon of truth and knowledge in these extended dark ages is, curiously, a Limerick accountant.
    George Lee should take heart and direction from this.
    But we do have something in common with the Mayans. They were short argumentative little feckers all full of their own importance. Until the onset of the Spanish musket.
    End of story then.

    • Tim

      Furrylugs, we had that kind of faction-system with chieftans here before the Cromwellian invitation. Where should we be now?

      George Lee will have to be in power to be as effective as he says he wants to. I do not see that happening before October. We need him now.

      Welcome back.

  26. coldblow

    This book review about the role of financial derivatives in yesterday’s Observer is quite interesting.
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/books/2009/jun/07/fools-gold-gillian-tett

    What caught my eye most was: “… In most societies elites try to maintain power not simply by garnering wealth but by ideological domination too — deciding what is talked about and what is not. The ‘social silence’ around the explosion of derivatives, and around the wealth and influence of the banking cadre, helped to construct and reinforce a new power structure and encouraged bankers to regard their activities…” etc. I like that phrase: social silence.

    Now this article I found really interesting:
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2009/jun/07/nick-cohen-gordon-brown-crisis/print

    It deals with Britain but I think it applies here too. I’m thinking back to the three economists on last week’s Vincent Brown programme. One of them was talking about the prospects of success of the Anglo bailout, which might succeed in the short term; as for the longer term, however… How many times have we heard that phrase, “as for the longer term, however, it remains to be seen whether this will be enough etc?” It’s the unthinkable but nobody really seems to think it can be avoided, and yet it isn’t being faced. The psychology is fascinating. Now maybe contingency plans are in place and we aren’t being told so as to avoid scaring the children but somehow I can’t see it.

    By a coincidence what Cohen describes happened in the July 1944 plot to assassinate Hitler. I have nearly finished a biography of Claus von Stauffenburg who not only primed and planted the bomb, despite having been maimed in North Africa, but also, though relatively junior in rank, flew back to Berlin to direct the military coup, pleading, haranguing and cajoling his colleagues with a phone in either hand. The cunning part of the plot was to hijack the plan which had actually been drawn up to restore order in the event of a coup. The Wehrmacht weren’t stupid and had seen the writing on the wall for a long time and the German armies were now in a hopeless situation waging war on two fronts. But when it transpired that Hitler hadn’t been killed as had earlier been claimed the top brass, most of whom had earlier been sounded out and had promised varying degrees of support, or at least had not opposed, used it as an excuse to back out, even though Germany was clearly finished and (I think) themselves too. And it might possibly have worked: the SS leaders in Paris had been arrested and Goebbels’ ministry in Berlin surrounded at gunpoint.

    I’m drifting a little off the point but this bit’s good so I’ll give it here: “Remer informed Goebbels that he had received orders to surround the Govt. buildlings (Regierungsviertel) because there had been a putsch against Hitler who was already dead. Goebbels replied that he had just been speaking to the ‘Fuhrer’ on the phone and arranged to have Remer, who was still a bit suspicious, connected through to the Wolfsschanze. Alfons Schultz, who was then a telephonist in the Fuhrerhauptquartier, put through the call. “We got a sudden call from the Propaganda Ministry. Goebbels was looking to be put through to Hitler. Thereupon we rang the Fuhrerbunker: Mein Fuhrer, the Reichsminister Dr. Goebbels wishes to speak to you. Can I connect him? — Put him through. Our curiosity of course overcame us and we listened in as Goebbels briefly put him in the picture and then said: I have here Major Remer, he has orders for my arrest. I have convinced him that you are alive. Can I bring Major Remer to the phone? Hitler agreed and asked: Remer, do you recognize my voice? Jawohl, mein Fuhrer. I am giving you the order now to lift the blockade on the Regierungsviertel and to break any resistance by force of arms. Everyone who is not for me is to be liquidated immediately. Do you understand? Jawohl, mein Fuhrer!”"

    Now of course I’m not in any way comparing our situation with that (doh!) but it’s interesting how hard it is ‘to bring about real change’.

    • wills

      coldblow – great links. As an aside,. i worked in shadow banking in Hamburg in ’94, with derivatives hounding investors across Germany to but into bets on currencies using a yellow pages business directory listing company directorship info, and in ’94 to a up n coming wet behind the ears irish lad it was blindingly obvious it was a casino racket and the german and english wide boy’s running it knew full well the nature of the beast.

      • wills

        on the silence point, .. let me share this with you,. the entrance into this derivatives venture i worked with was down a side alley through a backdoor up a winding stairwell up 5 flights of stairs behind a discreet door, downtown hamburg, off from the lake area, and mediavel church. ? was it’s going concern name and it was a venture funded by a main street bank.

    • Tim

      coldblow, I watched the film on DVD last night; riveting.

  27. Original-Ed

    David, excellent parallel with what is happening or has happened here – a case of the ruling elite getting carried away with themselves. A classic case where the concept of scarce resources and the management thereof (economics), is cast to one side as an illusion of plenty is created to bolster the regime’s grip on power and the exploitation of the masses. With no surprise, it always ends in disaster and it proves that there are a few basic facts that must be observer to ensure continuity a) 1+1=2, b) resources are scarce, c) good management is about controlling the use of resources for the best possible outcome. Bertie and Co. ignored all three and now the shit has hit the fan.
    On a more positive note – the BBC’s two part documentary “How the Celts saved Britain” is very interesting.
    In only fifty years the Irish went from no stone buildings to building monasteries – some achievement for its time.
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b00kps7h

    • Malcolm McClure

      Original-Ed: Perhaps another lesson can be drawn from the BBC series about the South Pacific. A recent episode showed the strange and exotic life forms that developed on isolated islands where there were no predators. Lacking natural enemies, they were at the mercy of foreign species like rats and cats when they were introduced to the islands.

      The Irish in their natural habitat are a guileless and trusting people, whose traditional defense has been to retreat through holes in the hedge to their bogs and marshes when confronted by aggressors from foreign lands. There has never been a semi-coherent Irish army since the defeat at Kinsale. Of course, the Irish have been great warriors when fighting for other countries, like Britain, Austria, Sweden, America and the Bolivar countries of S. America but after the revolution preferred neutrality and a tiny Defense Force to a standing army prepared to repel invaders.
      Thus we were intellectually unprepared to defend ourselves when the modern army of Bankers, trained by Canary Wharf and Wall Street in the latest nefarious financial techniques, arrived on our shores. It was a purely Darwinian conflict and the Banker rats quickly overran the exotics inhabiting Leinster House.
      Like Easter Islanders we were too busy building elaborate statues like Molly Malone, the Spire and competing with each other in the construction of ever more elaborate villas to realize what was happening.
      What happened to the Maya also happened to the Easter Islanders. As remaining resources dwindled in the wake of previous excess, they turned on each other and became cannibals. It hasn’t happened here yet but I think this may be the real lesson that David is trying to convey.

      • Tim

        Malcolm, that series on BBC is, indeed, excellent. I like your analogy here with Easter Island. But I am also very interested in your Canary Wharf reference: In the Irish psyche, this seems to be a focal point. The IRA bombed it with semtex and the Irishe developers tried to buy as much of it as they could. Both parties were secretly applauded.

        Is it all reactive? (reactive to the post-colonial-popular-consciousness), or can we become pro-active for a change? Must our actions, and thus our future “history” be always written as a link-back to oppression which does not admit of personal responsibility, always blaming “the other”?

        • Malcolm McClure

          Tim: An Irish friend working at Canary Wharf late last year told me that the place was then heavily populated with expat Irish. This is another example of the adventurous Irish performing on top of their game in foreign places. Except now the real earth-movers are attracted to financial markets rather than military exploits. Instead of being rewarded with medals and by getting streets named for them, they now earn enormous bonuses for success in the financial battles that have replaced cavalry charges. Their victims are still the regular foot-soldiers who lose an arm and a leg of their savings instead of their arms and legs.

          I hadn’t intended to blame the Vikings or the Brits in comments above; they walked in through an open door. Rather I blame the individualism and lack of organizational skills that prevented Ireland from ever functioning as a single nation, except from Cromwell to the Act of Union, and a brief period of native governance under Brian Boru.

          The Irish character does not lack a sense of personal responsibility but suffers from a surfeit thereof. Therefore we tend to bide by our own counsel rather than listen to the advice of leaders who might have a better notion of what is best for the wider community.

    • G

      It only took them 1200 years to acknowledge the Celtic contribution :-)

  28. Philip

    The moral of the story is that slaves revolt and usually the end result is a mess.

    You know, there is really no mystery to what is happening. If a killer meteor was to hit the place in a year, it would be guaranteed that no one would be told about arrnagements to build a spaceship of deep bunker to survive the blast. Only the ones in the know would be aware of it and would get 1st choice of refusal – long long before the plebs.

    This is the end of the financial system as we know it. It’s being zombified to maintain the status quo even if it means killing off all real wealth creation to maintain pretense. We are cannibalising good businesses to minimise the crystallised losses in dud paper wealth. We are all afraid to contemplate the unthinkable – giving 2 fingers to all the financial systems that exist today. By a pull out of the Euro, bankrupting the banks etc. all we are doing is accelerating the inevitable and removing the voice from these high priests of nonsense in double quick time. Sure, Ireland will collapse/ be bankrupt in the financial world’s eyes….but who cares? – that financial world is dying off. Ireland works as long as educated and skilled people are there. It can create any old financial system it needs to faciliate exchange of goods and services. In any event, the other countries are heading down the same route. We need to realise that the zombie action cannot turn into productive action becasue it is killing any wealth creation as soon as it happens. It’s the equivalent of a systemic weedkiller – the more the plant tries to grow, the more it kills itself.

    Ireland could take a lead by calling the zombie game…before we become slaves and history tells us that you do not want to go there…

    • adamabyss

      That’s exactly what I meant about throwing the box away, never mind thinking outside it Philip. And you are right – who cares what the financial world in all their ‘wisdom’ thinks. Look at the mess they’ve got us into (partly). Get rid of all the dead work, starting with the bottomless pit that is Anglo and build again from scratch.

  29. Garry

    I think the moral of the story is if youre a peasant dont revolt too early :)

  30. AndrewGMooney

    From: Agent John Gallagher.
    To: Addressees Only [All top-level operatives].
    Coded with highest level encryption. Not to be forwarded.

    With reference to the David McWilliam’s article, ‘Moral of The Mayan Meltdown’ I would make the following security and intelligence observations.

    Q: ‘And the moral of the story is?…’

    A: 20:12 20/12 2012: Peak Oil. Peak Capital/Credit, etc.

    As we approach the climeractic, it is becoming increasingly impossible to keep the reality of these crises from the infotainment consciousness of the masses. We are running out of time to
    manage the approaching flotilla of economic, ecological and political Black Swanz:

    http://www.instituteforhumancontinuity.org/#/home

    Fortunately, few overtly fantasise in this way at to what our long range telescopic scenarios foretell. Whilst it is worrying, we can expect this ‘expose’ of our operation to be dismissed as another Hollyweird disaster movie of no further import. For now.

    The article by DMcW’s is more disturbing, as he also seems to be joining up the dots in the jigsaw puzzle we strive to keep in pieces. He is known to be a ‘volatile intellectual compound’ and has access to media channels which we do not currently control.

    When these massed Black Swanz converge into their positions and can no longer be held from public understanding: The desperate masses will rise in tumults and revolts. But we must ignore the surface chaos and attend to the underlying work at hand. We must prepare the Ark.

    From Stonehenge or Newgrange: Will Quetzalcoatl emerge at the end of the Long Count to inaugurate the New Paradigm? Will the Great Leader be a healer or a a tyrant? Will this Great Leader joins us, or raise Armies of Igonorance to overwhelm our efforts to save (some of) Humanity? We do not know at this stage. All we have is the cryptic clue as prophesied: 20:12 20/12 2012

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mesoamerican_Long_Count_calendar#2012_and_the_Long_Count

    I classify DMcW’s as on a similar threat level as the Monbiot, whose dangerous thoughts we must montior on a daily basis. As the following blog entry highlights,he has covered similar ground to this article. ‘This Is What Denial Does’:

    http://www.monbiot.com/archives/2008/10/14/this-is-what-denial-does/

    However, these two dangers are mild compared to others in the massing ranks of malcontents who threaten our project. With nearly all our resources utilised in containing Micheal Hudson, Nicolas Nassim Taleb and Ann Pettifor: I do not think it is expeditious to mobilise resources to neutralise McWilliams at this stage. However, his seditious tendencies could spiral out of control at any stage, so he must be monitored 24/7/365. He may be a ‘sleeper’ but, hopefully,
    he can be returned to the safe warm sleep of Official Consensual Reality whilst we prepare our end game.

    As for AndrewGMooney. In time, a decision will taken as to whether he must be terminated with extreme prejudice. He has ‘awoken’, that much is clear. He has pieced the jigsaw puzzle together. He is busy channeling Adam Smith at the moment, but this diversion will not last long.

    Is he Quetzalcoatl? Is he friend or foe? We simply do not know.
    Our efforts, therefore, should revert to containing his unquantifiable menace, rather than us being distracted by currently minor threats such as David McWilliams.

    Over and out. Msg 2 be destroyed using multiple pass destructive iterations as per protocol.

    Agent John Gallagher. Birmingham. England.

    • Deco

      Yeah, Peak Oil is going to be a massive headache in years to come – and our infrastructure is structured for maximum inefficiency. Irish people need to stay out of each other’s way. And we don’t do high density residential settlement.

  31. Tim

    wills, “FF council member on liveline (o’doherty) and one could tell through her gritted teeth annoyance at FF head office how gunning for change she was,”

    Yes, wills. I listened to her. Her Father was the late Sean Dogherty, who famously made “that statement” on “Nighthawks” to Shay Healy about CJH. A man who sat at Sean Dogherty’s side at that time has been my Deputy Chairman for a few years. We were discussing her this evening. She is good. Change is coming.

    • G

      Tim, I am really sorry but I think you are seriously deluded if you think FF will change, the only change I want to see is for that band of brigands to disband!

  32. Tim

    Folks, for change, let’s start with the Judges. Top-down.

    The judges at the bottom are afraid of being overturned by the guys at the top, thus hampering their careers.

    Start at the top, with the “Seperation of Powers” rubbish that the govt carries on with about the appointment of Supreme Court judges; then do the High Court, etc….

    Then deal with the DPP – that office is accountable to nobody, it seems.

    This HAS to change!

    • Malcolm McClure

      Tim: I have been banging on for months about the apparent weakness of the Irish judiciary in consideration of the ‘separation of powers’ and their duty to protect the citizen’s rights as expressed in in the constitution.
      I totally agree with your suggestion to start at the top, perhaps by petitioning Adrian Hardiman, who has an independent spirit and no further need to look over his shoulder.

      • Tim

        Malcolm, Ok, let’s do that. You and I can do that. Let’s make it happen. I propose that we approach him with someone that he already knows, who is on my side………. what do you propose? Let’s work together?

        • Malcolm McClure

          Tim: Hardiman is as astute as they come, and as one of the founders of the PDs saw through the FF-FG axis years before any of us. Those efforts came to nothing, so he would be doubly wary of any political involvement, which anyway would be incompatible with his present position. He would be most unlikely to reply to any petition from us but might take on board, unacknowledged, some constructive suggestions about reforming the role of the judiciary, which I believe he is capable of doing.
          I need time to think about how to formulate such a constitutional petition. When I have done this I would welcome your input and your canvassing support from a few nominated serious-minded people.

  33. Malcolm McClure

    Tim: I watched Sean Doherty chair the Mini-CTC tribunal and got the impression that he was a bit of a dark horse. See:
    http://www.irishabroad.com/news/irishinamerica/news/legendarypoljune0805.asp
    It would be interesting to know John Waters’ opinion of his daughter.

  34. The educated peasants of today’s Ireland are so far distracted from reality by an array of toys provided for them by the ruling class and controlled by the media that they are way beyond ever seeing through the high priests & cheer leaders of today, They just voted in RTE’s x cheerleader turn politician. So I think the high priests can sleep soundly in their satin beds with gold trimmings.

  35. wills

    Deco – thks for correcting my under – look on personal party affiliation.
    Fully agree on the management obsolesence plaguing irish life and the speed of the gadget – knowledge economy and it leaving irish management back in the stone age. The transformation now imperative on management inertia is such a new type it also pulls on people too alter and expand as thinking feeling individuals and it cannot be waffled or spoofed up with a leprechaun pot of gold over the rainbow fast one. Thus irish business culture to re connect with global dynamism requires been irish to go through a radical overhaul to pluck out deep neurosis and psychological damage cultures of europe did in the 19th / 20 th centuries.

    I remember you posted ireland needs to go the couch and i think this really is the bottom line. Irelands hit the pareto optimum and will not budge until the country seriously looks inward and cleanses itself of spirtual caustic damage never properly addressed on any level.

  36. Tim

    Folks, George Lee saw first hand, tonight, what the political cut-and-thrust is. Tonight witH Vincent Brown. He is learning…….

  37. jim

    Had a quick scan of some of the candidates for the local elections and it came as no surprise,to find Son’s, Daughters,Cousin’s etc of sitting TD’s, exTD’S etc standing for Election.Row’s over selection of candidates accross the board,people leaving their Parties and standing as Independants to make way for someone’s offspring.Td’s married to Td’s…..I’ll say this it will come as no surprise to Me some night when I download the Dail report and Find the entire front bench of some Government made up entirely of fools with heavy set glasses,listening while their Taoiseach engages the Opposition with “duelling banjo’s”.In-breeding and nepotism on a grand scale.To answer Tim’s question from above,I’d be just happy to see them drawing from a larger gene pool for starters.Cowen’s brother Barry was elected onto Offaly C.C.but He’s also a Bookie and Auctioneer,while His Constituency Office Manager Dooley gets Elected also onto Offaly C.C. and Tullamore Town Council.How many salaries do they need??? Maybe we should contact the C.S.O. and tell them that their calculating the jobless figures incorrectly.Tell them the number of jobs that people are drawing salaries from way outnumber the people employed….Maybe they already factor in double jobbing by Zanu-FF members.;;-))…What say you Tim ,” is it too late to include this information in your 5 suggestion’s lists for creating employment, as Im sure Barry and Mrs.Dooley dont need 6 jobs between them in these times of high unemployment?????.P.S Take a leaf from their older Brother and only have 2 jobs,Publican and Undertaker,and I dont hear reports of Him grazing on the Fair Green in Clara.Model of Restraint I tell ya.:-))

  38. Deco

    Had a quick scan of the Indo.
    Coughlan is in the firing line. The effect of John McGuinness taking her on damaged her internally within FF. McGuinness bucked the trend in Kilkenny, getting votes from the opposition. And now there is pressure from within to get her away from the Enterprise Ministry. Good. That is a definite improvement. Coughlan herself is still in denial. But one thing is clear -the Indo is no longer telling us that people who want Coughlan demoted are sexist. No, actually, Coughlan’s wide array of critics have a grip of the underlying reality – that she is an underperformer.

    Some of the comments in the article are hilarious. This is page 1 of the most widely sold newspaper in Ireland.
    http://www.independent.ie/national-news/demotion-on-cards-for-coughlan-in-reshuffle-1766397.html

    If this article is to be beleived, then it is clear that other ministers want Coughlan demoted. So she will not be Tanaiste either. And it would seem that they are lining up to face down Cowen over this.

    O’Dea has admitted that FF are overly centralized. Another legacy of the Haughey era which is now seen as problematic, and will get rolled back. Good for Irish democracy. You can credit this to FG’s Mr. Soft and his soft running of FG selection. (Mind you some turkeys did get on the FG ticket as a result in local areas).

    The next EU commisioner will not be a government minister. Eoin Ryan will be hanging around with nothing to do, but having failed to get elected, he might be seen as a bot controversial. So Ryan will be recirclated into domestic politics, as a means of renewing the Dublin FF Southside vote, in the wake of George Lee’s success. So it will most likely go to Pat Cox.

    There is massive pressure to close the Lisbon Referendum before the Conservatives get into power in Britain and offer the British people a referendum. The British have scepticism of any continental one state schemes, and will want Magna Carta (the Common Law) to be retained as the basis of the legal system, and not appointees in Luxembourg. There is a rumour that MI5 know a lot more about what is really being worked on in Brussels than anybody else-and were relieved when the Irish voted no. Effectively the British want Lisbon to crash, but have to please the continentals. Don’t be surprised if there is a twist in the tale from the British concerning Lisbon. Brown is virtually finished. And it is possible that Labour MPs will not support a confidence motion in him, or defect to the Lib Dems, purely to save their own skins. Pressure from the British (including dissenters in the British Labour Party) on the Irish government to delay the Lisbon Referendum will need to be balanced with pressure from Barosso to force it through fast.

    Ireland, dependent of ECB loans, will oblige by having another quick, submerged, guilt-ridden, badly informed rerun of a Referendum. The problem is that Cowen has to do something to unsour the public mood before Lisbon II. If he does nothing, or if another funny Irish Bank starts to get into trouble, then Cowen will face another revolt. Therefore you will see another Lisbon Referendum, and it will be a conscious attempt to appeal to status obsession, guilt, fear and every base instinct to get people to follow instructions. There will be no debate about Lisbon this time. There was not supposed to be a debate the last time, and it somehow surfaced.

    Cowen’s strategists will also be looking to have Lisbon II before Ganley is goaded into changing his mind by his own supporters. Lisbon will afford FF the chance to show that the left are divided, and that Gilmore’s plans to lead an assortment of leftwingers is not likely to form an agreed mandate, let alone a stable government. The faultline between SF and ILP will be exposed in Lisbon and will be utilized by FF. And Cowen himself will also have to deal with the fact that many in FF will refuse to campaign for Lisbon on the basis of incompetent FF ministers. Front bench FF is no longer in control of FF for the first time since CJH made obedience the number 1 virtue. This was evident when the former FF Mayor of Clonmel, Michael O’Brien, castigated government policy on Questions and Answers two weeks ago. Basically the voices of dissent within FF are growing and threaten to undermine FF itself. This is an admission of the need to reverse the Haughey legacy within Irish politics. Once again, Phase 3 – Cleaning up after Haughey. It is the FF membership and not the Irish Times or the delusionally absurd Irish Labour Party who will accept responsibility for cleaning up after Haughey. And that will start now. If it is does not happen the next government will be FG plus independents. The death knell of FF is a FG government without the ILP to increase the absurdity level.

    So, the next step we will see is O’Dea, O’Rourke, Cullen, Coughlan, and other focus points for discontent being demoted. Bertie’s fools are on the way out. Replacement candidates for their seats will even be prepared for the next general election. It will be another “Albert Reynolds sacking people while eating sandwiches” episode.

    You ain’t seen nothing yet. As Conor Caseby was indicatin all along, ‘time to get the finger out, before the country goes down the toilet’. And it would seem that it is no longer just Caseby who is communicating the message. Soon it will be the only plan available for An Taoiseach. The ratings agencies, the IDA, the FF membership, the media will be setting the agenda.

  39. wills

    FF are finished. The electorate gave a vote of no confidence over the weekend. Why.? FF’s bonkers bailout for bankers.

    The game is now afoot. FF and the gangster element in charge of FF are now in a race against time to see in NAMA before the inevitable.

  40. wills

    Martin maseragh’s performance on VIncent Brownne last night exposed the blaguardness and niggard culture in charge at the helm of FF. FF are running scared of GL. GL is a real threat to the installing of NAMA to which the gangsters running FF are now so obviously obsessed with implementing which is so obviously a dead weight of monetary slavery the FF master is roping around the taxpayers neck to preserve the GANGSter feudal rule for another 30 years.

  41. wills

    Gangster FF are trying to pull off an invisible coup d’etat through NAMA and it must be stopped from the inside and outside.

  42. MK1

    Hi Tim,

    Tim> I intend to carry on now, with the gathering momentum of change within the party being driven upwards from the bottom; I expect this to culminate in a collapse After Halloween, when the final push will be easier after the pensions are secured and the Parliamentary party will be weary. Ff will be effective in opposition then and that will be the time to really reform the party.

    Okay, you are predicting that FF will reform as effectively a new party after this turmoil. That is a laudable goal. However, I for one would be a sceptic, but we will see. To effect the change, FF would need to get rid of every tainted TD that currently sits, so that would be all curremt Ministers and ex-Ministers. I just cant see that happening. New FF, we may be waiting for a while for that slogan, but best wishes with the project nevertheless.

    Anyone on here a member of the Green Party?

    MK1

  43. wills

    CHeck Anglo/NAMA link below out.

    DOnald ‘the duck’ o connor at committee chin wag.

    To quote him ….”overriding objective (by grabbing 7billion taxpayers euros) is to protect the irish taxpayer”.

    Can I just say, you are not looking after my protection as a taxpayer, you couldn’t give a flying fu@k about my protection as a taxpayer.

    Stop using me as a taxpayer as an excuse to racketeer cashflow from my pocket to bail your private corporate gangster gambling outfit.

    http://online.wsj.com/article/BT-CO-20090609-703931.html

    Put the money back in the exchequer and leave me to protect myself and go about your shadow gangster gambling business.

  44. wills

    A vivid analysis here on the A – Z of a PONZi Rep.

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/business/8086016.stm

  45. wills

    So, on NEWSTALK, Donald ‘duck’ o connor at todays Dail committee chin wag and has said, this morning, ANIB need more tax cash, their 7 billion euro projections are wrong. He also said it must be done, and also, 50 billion in market funding could be lost very soon, too..!!

    Impaired loans new total now is 10 billion, he also told the committee, and the figure he gave for possible more funding will be an extra further 3 Billion euro.

  46. wills

    eddie hobbes, NEWSTALK, “we now own a thug bank” (on ANIB)

  47. wills

    hobbes…………. “politicians been engaging a brave amount of bullshit on the banks”

  48. wills

    hobbes………”we must wind – up ANglo now in an orderly way”

    • Dilly

      This is why we saw less and less of Hobbes on RTE, he was saying things that our Monarchy did not want us to hear.

      • Tim

        He is allowed out every now and then, on the condition that he says: “The problem is the public sector pay and pensions bill”.

        He said this again today, while ignoring the potential 50 billion problem if anglo is wound up in Eddie’s “orderly fashion”; he suggested this would consist in offering the bond-holders 35c in the euro.

        Now, Eddie, that would be a €17.5 billion hit to the taxpayer, on top of what we have wasted on the banks so far.

        By the way, Eamonn Keane and Eamonn Dunphy, between them today exposed how the govt controls the radio and TV media: “Give us an easy ride, or we will not give you the interviews or press releases”. We all know that similar happens with newspapers, especially in terms of withdrawing massive govt advertisind funds if the paper does not play ball.

        You see, this is why our sheeple are so easily controlled; we are hoodwinked by those in power through muzzled journalism. We have posted on our inept media many times on this site; What is new today is that they admitted it. Perhaps the groundswell is expanding………

        Looking forward to the fallout from the FF Parliamentary party meeting this evening.

  49. mediator

    @Tim re FF reform

    Best of luck with that. As someone with some experience of FF they are not a grassroots party (although many FF members think that they are). The only power in FF is the parliamentary party which is tainted with corruption and nepotism. They view the cumann members with disdain and it is very rare for them to listen to their ordinary members and will generally not accept as a candidate for general election a genuine member who came from the grassroots.

    Cumann members are election fodder. The only reason I can think that ordinary cumann members participate is that they are political junkies who get a high from the day out at counts and the buzz at every election.

    As long as corrupt pariliamentary party can rely on these poor fools
    (I know of this as my family used to be such fools) then FF will continue as before.

    But as I said…Best of luck.

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