November 18, 2009

State should start printing money to rescue economy

Posted in Banks · 339 comments ·
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Did you know that our country’s housing wealth has shrunk at a rate of €142.8m per day since the peak of the boom in 2007? This is a catastrophic figure because housing wealth was one of the key drivers of spending, and domestic spending is what kept the dole queues so low in the boom years.

Without this housing “feel-good factor” we will continue to spend less. And the housing situation is getting more alarming. In January 2007, the total value of all our houses and apartments was €550.64bn and today that figure is €411.69bn. According to the latest report from daft.ie, rents are collapsing back to 1999 levels. Many people believed that, even in the worst case scenario, the housing market would bottom at 2003/4 levels. This now looks optimistic.

The more rents fall, the more house prices fall too and this is because the rents are a leading indicator of what is happening to real housing demand. There is such an overhang of houses in the system and such a lack of demand that house prices will continue to tumble.

The problem is that it is getting worse by the day. Not only is the housing market not stabilising, it is getting weaker. This fundamental weakness in our balance sheet is one of the main reasons that we have to be cautious about the positive spin we are hearing this week from some stockbrokers and the spectacularly useless forecasts from the Department of Finance.

Like almost every economic problem of the past two years, all roads lead to the banks. In a situation where house prices are falling, the banks will not lend because the banks’ balance sheets are mortgaged to the very houses and properties that are now falling in value. As this process leads to defaults, the bad debts of the banks will rise, reducing their capital base and causing money to leave the banks. With investors unwilling to plug the gap until the full extent of the bad loans becomes apparent, the forced nationalisation of one of the big banks is clearly a distinct possibility.

Yesterday, we heard that the serial delinquent Irish Life and Permanent — an outfit whose loan to deposit ratio reached a ludicrous 260pc — is now trying to gain deposits again. But if it gets its deposits up, then to get the loans to deposit ratio down it has to lend less. Here again is evidence that credit in the economy is drying up.

Shrinking housing wealth brings into focus what is happening around the country and explains why hundreds of thousands of us have stopped spending and borrowing. Why would you borrow when prices are falling by 6pc and the banks are charging 5.5pc at least in interest? This is a real interest rate of 11.5pc. What company or individual, when faced with falling incomes, will contemplate borrowing at these rates? More crucially, when faced with real rates of interest of this magnitude, banks will not lend to businesses because these levels of interest rates increase the risk of bankruptcy.

This is the monetary environment we are faced with. In economics this situation is called a liquidity trap. It describes a situation where the banks are unwilling to lend to risky businesses, so business gets starved of cash and people are unwilling to borrow because they are crippled by the servicing costs of debts they took out in the boom.

This credit crunch is felt most drastically in much higher unemployment than is necessary. Unemployment, for anyone who has experienced it in a family, is a most destructive force. The shock is not only financial, but the psychological and emotional cost as well as the stress associated with unemployment is enormous. If you want to see this, ask your local doctor; doctors are seeing people presenting to them who never visited a surgery before.

The only way out of this liquidity trap and the rise in unemployment — according to mainstream economics — is now to bypass the banks. If the banks are not lending the money which the European Central Bank is giving them, then bypass the existing ones. This means one of two things. Either the State sets up a new bank, deals with the creditors of the old banks and gives these creditors some equity in the new bank; only a new bank will start to lend again and this is how our system works.

Or, more radically, the State could follow the moves of every country that has found itself in this dilemma in the past — it could print its own money free of any constraints to get things moving again.

This idea of pumping new money into the system seems radical until you examine history and see that extraordinary times demand extraordinary responses. This is how the US, for example, got out of the Great Depression following the collapse of the economy and the banking system in 1931.

On April 18, 1932, within weeks of coming into power Franklin D Roosevelt, ignoring the advice of his economic advisers, took the US off the gold standard and allowed the Federal Reserve to print as much of these “new dollars” as was necessary to get the economy going. The effect was almost miraculous. The financial markets jumped 15pc on the announcement and in a matter of months the US economy rebounded, with industrial production rebounding.

We need the same sort of political courage now to do something radical because if we leave the economy to its own devices and continue to cut spending when the people are petrified and the present banking system is in tatters, the wealth of the country will just keep on shrinking.


  1. 1) are they allowed?

    2) Would the major players not simply respond with “grand, that’s the pinch removed, we’ll soak that cash up” resulting in stagflation.

  2. Yo Yo Jobs :
    ‘ T ‘ is for thank you ….so thank you mr. minister for my job back and being busy again .

    ‘ T ‘ is the first letter on all euro notes printed by DOF D4 and they are plentiful again …in Eire .So thank you mr minister I love working again its so different mr minister and my wife also says thank too .Thank you mr minister thank you very much thank you very very much …oh thank you mr minister all my kids have full breakfasts every morning now …oh mr minister thank you thank you thank you .

  3. In an earlier recorded time the real printers of our currency were the irish monks .They printed Gold and plenty of it .Then one day foreigners arrived known as Vikings and took all that Gold including some monks and nuns.Many of those Viking’s names were called’ Brian’.
    When in captivity these monks did not rebel instead decided to learn the Viking tongue and to print it with the christian messages of their holy ways .They noticed in this foreign tongue a strong guttaral sound at the begining and end of many words and so they decided ‘to coin it ‘ by creating a unique letter to indicate the beginning and end of the words when this sound was heard .These two letters were ‘ Þ’ and ‘ ð ‘ and their signifcance was a biblical one ( book : da wu yu code ) and these were used in the first printed bibles and by irish monks in the viking world including the german bible.The monks were instrumental in changing and recording the viking tongue forever .
    Today we find ourselves in a similar situation only this time we dont have long hair as they did but we do wear habits not the same as the monks .We mostly carry ‘pc’s ‘ instead of ‘wooden crosses’ that connect us to our new worlds and beyond’.We need to learn from these monks when during their captivity they ‘used their heads’ and ‘printed their ideas’ .
    This is The Word of David .
    Amen.

  4. There is perhaps a hybrid solution. Firstly with NAMA the tax payers have an asset class (discounted loan book) with at least 47 billion (give or take a few billion)

    Next the government has issued bonds in exchange for them at a discounted rate of 1%. In effect there is no lien on those assets as the State has guaranteed the value of the bonds issued and there is no recourse to the underlying assets.

    Finally NAMA is in effect the equivalent of the US Fannie Mae/Freddie Mac underwriter of the assets acquired.

    There is nothing to stop NAMA issuing secondary unsecured bonds obviously with a higher premium on the assets it would have on its books. This secondary issuance would be of significant amount to be used as the necessary cash for the establishment of a new bank.

    The cash received on the secondary bonds would have to legislated for to be allowed to inject into a “third force” bank which would be matched by an injection of equity from private investors. It would have a similar status to the other banks except that this would not have any of the debt overhang of the other banks.

    This new bank would have no association with the existing “zombie” institutions and would be freely able to lend into the economy.

    Using the Multiplier effect of such loaned money would increase the flow of money into the system by 20-30 billion over an 18 month period. Money that could easily be used to boost the economy, without the risk of pumping it back into a property hole.

    Perhaps I am wrong, but has this been even considered?

  5. G

    No need to create a State bank, we already practically have 3-4 of them, just finish the job and nationalise AIB, Bank of Ireland and along with Anglo (which should be wound up and consigned to the financial dustbin of history), take direct State control of the banks and manage the money coming from the ECB and elsewhere, you can’t expect Banksters to develop a conscience and ‘do the right thing’.

    They now represent a threat to the solvency and security of the State with their inaction and unwillingness to lend so we can get things moving again.

    End this monopoly of criminality and theft, nationalise and prosecute those responsible!

    • ouldbegrudger

      @G
      Hell, they already have health, social welfare, law&order etc. Now you want to give them control over money and banking…
      a sure recipe for tyrany and subjugation. What’s next? Full state control of the media?

  6. The point is that we cannot (or probably should not) do anything with the other bank and let them play out their long term game. Creditors have to be dealt with, even if it is through insolvency, so taking in and absorbing all the problems of the Semi-State Banks as they currently are right now would give rise to competition laws within the EU.

    Secondly why nationalise them to spend time and effort on trying to sort out the mess. They got themselves into the mess and the State have agreed to assist. The problems they have to solve themselves.

    A clean slate with a new Semi-State third force bank with a 49% ownership is a viable option with private investors making up the difference funded through secondary bonds issued by NAMA and injected into the new Bank is a way to overcome competition laws in the EU.

    The Government is not printing more money it is using the assets it now owns (or will own) to improve liquidity and free up the credit market in the country to get us out of the mess we are currently in.

    I am not saying it is perfect, but it is a longer term view than this week, month or too narrow focused as it has seemed for the last 12 months or so.

    • G

      I am far from an expert, which is probably a good thing.

      By nationalising you can clean out the banks of the corrupt, you get full access to the ‘working’ resources, full control of the balance sheet and you get money to market faster without reinventing the wheel.

      These banks will only get themselves out of the mess by taking more taxpayer stimulus money, which they are not using for the benefit of small businesses it would seem, instead they are holding on to ensure there own survival, maintain salaries and bonuses……..

      This should end now, send in the Guards, get a hold of the books and nationalise the lot, when the banks return to some good shape, let the State control any profits, the State by controlling these banks could immediately stop repossessions and the bullying of people that is going on wholesale.

      As for EU competition law, again not an expert but a deal can always be done!

      • jor200

        What makes you imagine that nationalistion would end corruption?
        The honesty of our politicians and civil servants with regard to pay expenses and pensions? Or the high ethical standards operating in Russia and Burma?

    • wills

      GeraldBrandon -
      The ‘banksters’ orchestrated their own meltdown.
      The ‘banksters’ deliberatelt threw all banking prudence too the wind too make a ‘killing’ in super dooper profits within the window of time the POnzi bubble had, SO, the lets do this, the banksters return the banking license to the gov due to breaking the license legalities, and the banks take their chances meeting their obligations and the state assumes constitiutional enshrined jurisdiction over monetary policy and does the banking itself.

      We are all grown up’s here and are not sick puppies too the banksterism now becoming cult.

  7. roc

    While I appreciate the monetary stimulus that is needed, David, let’s not allow a wall of money to cover up the underlying problems. – Such as corruption, rent-seeking, reducing people to mere cogs in the profit making machine, rampant gombeenism etc…

    As we’ve seen, the wall of money obscures these social and political factors that comprise the real world, and the essences of our productiveness etc, that underlie all of the financial engineering and monetary shenanigans…

    Now, that the receding of the wall of money has brought these social and political factors to the surface once again, let’s NOT miss the opportunity we now have to address them, before rushing to cover them up again. Cheers.

    • wills

      spot on roc. AGree. The debt slave monetary system legacy is over and ought to receive constant exposure on it’s rotten corrupting nature.

  8. Deco

    The state has already adopted a fudge method of printing money to solve the crisis….massive borrowing.

    Let’s face it we are a society that as Baron Kinsealy once commented “are living beyond our means”. (and he certainly was the best expert on that subject at the time).

    When the financial crisis hit, we changed from being an economy with unsustainable borrowing in the private sector, to an economy that propped up by unsustainable living in the public sector. Ireland continued to be addicted to money, just in a different form of the drug.

    It is the lifestyle that is the problem with Ireland. Dick Cheney once commented that the American way of life (and happy motoring around suburban shopping malls) was not up for compromise. And he was cheered on by the sofa intellectuals holding their remote controls.

    But if anything, perhaps we have an even more arrogant streak in us as a society. And it goes by the name Irish Pride. All sorts of rubbish are justified by nothing except arrogance.

    The popular belief that prices would go to 2003 levels is based on the assumption that the madness only started in 2003. But now with rents to 1999 level, then we should expect property prices to drop to the 1999 level. House prices do not care about previous prices and particular years. Actually it is all about supply and demand – but in the popular mindset, this fact has not been accepted. It’s consequences are tough, and are getting blanked out. (Still in denial phase about this).

    The next thing that you will hear is that “house prices have now gone on the underside, of the rebalancing”. And Comical Tom(Parlon) will pop up on the media to tell the masses that once again “it is a great time, even better now to buy a property”. Hurry up before all the houses in the ghost estates are gone.

    Forget re-inflation. Even if achieved, our industrial base is in dire trouble. We need to accept deflation, and everybody having to work much harder. And certain sectors like electricity, town councils and the state itself are going to have to cut down their costs. Either these drop or the minimum wage will have to drop. I know which option is preferable. Except our clown ministers with their imperial perspectives have no intention of driving an economy drive on such comfortable Disneyworld complexes as the ESB, RTE, the Central Bank of Ireland, IFRSA, the entire D2 complex, An Bord Gais, CIE, etc…. And we even have idiot Ministers like Gormless, Whine and Densey who want to look after these monstrosities at the expense of the national cost base.

    We need serious reform under the government’s noses. Impossible. We are a slow motion train wreck about to happen. With loads of infotainment (or enter-containment) episodes until it becomes inevitable – and a Taoiseach who has an opinion on the X-Factor, a seat in Paris and beer on tap afterwards to continue the delusion.

    • gadfly55

      Brilliant and incisive summation of the essentially cultural problem at the base of the crisis, a problem of the mentality of the dominant tribe who believe in nothing more than balancing the demands of business with the needs of its electorate, neither of whom can see past tomorrow, and depend on the state delivering whatever they want. This fraction of the sub-Arctic island now is effectively dysfunctional as an economy and as a society, the consequences being a continuous disintegration and decline into despair and dereliction, with a few outposts of gated and secure export facilities attempting to compete with Bangalore and Shanghai. Anyone with the wit to know this ship is going down should gather their resources, cut their losses, and move on. We have had our moment of maniacal arrogance and now we will either live within our meagre means, or be reduced to beggary and control by exteriour agencies. David has now lost the plot and is taking the piss. Read Buttonwood in the Economist , the award winning Philip Coggan who writes a weekly column if you want some sensible weekly commentary. The first point is that you cannot print your way out of a recession, one reason gold is now over $1170, because the creditors of the debased dollar and sterling are looking for some stability of value, and you can not print gold. The second major problem of course is dependency on hydrocarbons, all of which are imported into Ireland, except a bit of turf of course, and the effect on the real economy in the import/export systems upon which we depend. We are going to have to become alot more self-sufficient in every respect, which defies the dependency culture in which the Government delivers conditions, pay and benefits to business, the public sector, and the dependent population on an unsustainable and imbalanced scale of magnitude beyond any common sense by the other 6/7billion humans sharing this planet. There is nothing special about the Irish, no luck, no talent, no blessing, beyond having benefited momentarily from its connections to the USA and UK, but now their way of business and government has been shown as a catastrophic failure and the rest of the world regard this country as damaged and incompetent at best, and potentially disastrous, and will not invest their time or money in such a precarious economy.

      • wills

        Gadfly -
        D is not strictly saying ‘printing our own money’ will fix the the malaise gripping Ireland.

        His point is, there is a solution to the problem and it part of it is printing money under state jurisdiction.

        Deco right on the cultural neurosis but lets not the dysfunction paralysis those who are mentally balanced from diagnosing the facts and pointing fingers in the right directions and so on.

  9. Deco

    David – Permo is not in NAMA.This is possibly because the timeline for the incurrence of bad debts for Permo is different.

    In the US there is an institutional entity called the “Savings & Loan”. These are, as far as I am aware the US equivalent of our “building society”. They specialise in residential mortgages.

    Permo is a primarily reflection of the residential mortgage market. (As is the EBS). It does not get a sudden thumping like Anglo or BoI or AIB. It is more like a slow accumulation of problems. But in trying to say that all is well in Permo, the truth is being stretched a bit. There are institutional factors that might be compromising the truth. Which in Irish banking circles seems to be normal.

    The problem is that Permo is that the residential housing crash has still not materialised. And with property prices now heading to 1999 levels the exposure is massive. But more particularly the private sector wage income in absolute terms is declining. Either the state readjusts it’s weight on the private sector, or Permo will keep getting higher levels of debts and will end up in NAMA. A case of government dithering about a problem getting you into more trouble, than biting the bullet about the problem in the first place. The first thing Ireland needs is more competence in the cabinet. Immediately.

    • Deco

      We have bankers who are deluding themselves as to the reality, in order to preserve their power and influence.
      And we have the same problem in the state.

      The Irish concept of authority is flawed. And the Irish concept of management is now bankrupt. That is where we are at, because that is what we are going to learn.

      Therefore admit the problem and start fixing it.

      • wills

        Deco – too true.

        Big problem here though, this ‘cult of power lust’ is under the grip of omnipotent power and its sobering up and it makes these powers more unstable and unpredictable and grasping and we get NAMA and ECB collusion and nonsense politics and greens agreeing with pure naked capitalism and so on as they loose their grip on power they bring in more tyranny and it’s all bonkerdom infantilism.

      • The Eye

        no lets play the Emperors new clothes game for longer………

  10. There is no way out of this Black Hole.
    The Germans will never agree to “Weimar” the Euro.
    I have heard talk of them (along with one or two other strong nations) abandoning the Euroship totally though, and going back to Deutschmarks..
    Did anybody notice the obvious solution to the proposed hairshirt budget in Ireland has never even been mentioned once by anybody except by a radical, lefty, Irish Times, jogger journalist.?
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1zPT9IplkHE

    • wills

      Let the black hole disintegrate itself and reset the economic framework by returning monetary power too the jurisdiction of the state as enshrined in our constitution.

    • Deco

      No….but if they knew everything that happens in Dublin….they would readily kick Ireland out of the Euro to Weimar the Punt 2.0.

  11. Garry

    I’m going to do an MK1 and say sorry I havent read the comments… not because Im busy though…just couldnt be arsed :)

    Anyways only skimmed the article and I presume David means jack in the Euro and print like bejasus… Or else rob the Euro master plates from the ECB… Bring the workers party into power

    I’m all for paying the public servants in trinkets, so go for it….. but it probably would be best to do it before borrowing tens of billions of EUROS and giving them to the banks…

    Anyways I’ve an idea for how to bring much needed foreign currency into the country once were all swapping Lenny pennies…. Legalise cannabis… think about it we then have 50 million Brits, theres bound to be a few hundred thousand of them indulge… maybe a few hundred thousand germans, french etc…. sure their euros will go a long way then in Ireland…. they can buy up the excess housing stock.. NAMA can become one big hippy commune, sure the lads who dreamt it up were on something…

    we go back to the oul Celtic mysticism, think of Ireland as a chill out place for Euro slackers….. they can have their own windtunnel growing all the weed they need…. listen to Davy Spillane and Chrisy Moore… a kind of a low energy version of riverdance… with wolly jumpers and without the embroidery and nancy shirts… The sheep farmers are back in business

    There’ll be none of that anger like when Cat Stevens tried to get all arty at his concert.. The weed will keep them all relaxed…. There’ll be no one loaded up on cider shouting “Play Peace Train ya f***** b***** or I’ll f***** kill ya!!

    It’ll be great, Peace

    • wills

      This is the cult like state we already live in. The banks have created this pagan like existence. WAKE UP and see the trees for the forest.

    • Garry , they are now doing this is south America , but our conservative politicians , just can’t see the revenue here as they are all tanked up on Guinness

    • Garry,
      Holland is there ahead of us on that one.
      There is no doubt that Cannabis will have to be legalized throughout Europe-one day..meanwhile we could get in on the act and compete with the Dutch.
      Their tourist economy must benefit enormously-not only by their beautiful cities and canals-but by the legal sale and use of a drug which is certainly less harmful than alcohol or tobacco.
      Problem is Fianna Fail would give most of the licences to their cronies and keep the rest for their TD´s (like the liquor trade)
      And none of them would pay their taxes (as usual) so the state would gain bugger all.
      however if a new system of smoking parlours and retail shops owned by the state was set up (as in Norway,Sweden,Finland, Russia,etc where there is a state liquor sale monopoly) then Brian would get his 4 billion in tax revenue.!

  12. Herein Lies D CODE :

    ‘ T’ = the first letter on all Irish Printed Euro Notes ;

    ‘ Th’ = is the Viking guttural sound that the Irish Monks heard ;

    ‘ þ ‘ = is the holy scripture word devised by Irish Monks for the ‘Th ‘ above ;

    ‘Th ‘ = are also the same letters introduced by Irish Monks in Ampleforth to the guttural sound introduced into english language as used today .

    T = Th = þ

    where T is the cashflow .

    • ps200306

      Small correct John ALLEN:

      The letter þ (pronounced ‘thorn’) was around in Old English / Anglo-Saxon from mid-fifth century. It was shared with the Old Norse but was around before it.

      If you’re looking for ideas to generate cashflow, think of how the Scandinavians wrote the name of the letter:

      þorn

      :-)

  13. VincentH

    Yes David, what we need is that the shins are kicked out from under. Then and only then will there be something real. All that is happening at the moment is a stumbling teeter which is neither standing nor on the ground.

  14. wills

    David -

    DAmn good article.

    You are RIGHT.

    Return to the state jurisdiction over our monetary powers and governance and lets bring to book the banks for transgressing the legalities on the banking licenses and i say the time is NOW.

    The banks have us all living under an economic dictatorship in the form of a cultist like rule over our meeja, political life, business life and day to day life.
    Bringing us all into deeper and deeper tyranny with NAMA and then the TRIPLE LOCK and then what???

    We can print our own money and close the banks and be grown up’s and be independent and make decisions for ourselves and take responsibility.

    I mean this stuff is unreal. The people who will do anything possible to stop this solution are guess who, the very interests who do make their own money and have the rest of us enslaved to the debt money economic spikes and spirals system it s created for society.

    You cant make this stuff up!!!!!

  15. SLICKMICK

    Have any of you read Anthony Sweeney’s2 Banana Republic”?.His analysis is similar to David’s and predicts a fifties style meltdown.All thanks to the idiocy of joining the euro.At least MGQ is a happy woman this morning.How do you sit in the court of auditios, if you haven’t studied business?.Did Pat Neary have any academic qualifications?.A shambles!.

    • Deco

      What did Patrick Neary have as academic qualifications ?
      Sorry but how is that relevant. Didn’t he play golf with the bankers. Wasn’t he a safe pair of hands……
      As Ruairi commented “Ballygobackwards”.

      Now that you mention it, who in those 800 quangos is qualified academically to do their job. The entire spectrum is populated by nepotists and political appointees. Just look at the ex-Taoiseach’s ex-girlfriend on the board of….of all things….the national consumer agency…..She must be doing a great job….Irish people consume far more than they can afford. Worth her weight in Family Firm election manifestos :)))

  16. Philip

    This article must be one of the scariest DMcW creations yet. I think we can say ladies and gents that the country is well and truly stuffed except our eminences in the banking and PS sector have not copped it yet.

    You can forget about competence coming into the system any time soon if the latest little fracas on the AIB pay for the head man is anything to go by. Closed shop/ Group Think – they are all suffocating in each others bodily odors. The guys pay should be capped at 120K – not 500K!!! In fact, zero because, he should be on bonuses only.

    I wonder too about this liquidity injection/ freeing up of credit etc. when really a lot of our SMEs (which are supposed to benefit) are dependant on large companies to survive. Large companies such as …Banks, Government and SemiStates…and one or two Irish companies. Banks are not spending. And with the cuts – the Government and Semis will be in the same boat. Our economic fabric does not have mega national champions like Renault, Pergeot, Mercedes, Fiat etc. where a scrappage scheme can temporarily lift a whole country out of a recession.

    I say “temporarily” because, so far, a lot of the recession busting we have seen elsewhere has merely brought natural buying cycles forward without really doing anything fundamentally sustainable. I’d not be surprised to see France/ Germany etc starting to slide again into negative territory.

    I referred to this economic fabric above. In our case, it is mainly a service industry to larger buyers and is highly pyramidal and very susceptible to just a small number of disruptors such as a Dell leaving or Intel pulling up sticks etc. But there has been another effect underway as well in many of the procurement functions of these mega organisations. They now procure from global one stop shop entities which cut out the local company. From computer maintenance to toilet paper, from Software to paperclips you name it – it’s being fulfilled more and more by a global one stop shop where negotiations occur off shore – cutting out many of our SMEs and our local competitiveness has exacerbated the situation a tad. But having said that, a lot of countries have this problem. So fundamentally, I can see a lot of structural unsustainable issues which are now hitting all western economies by allowing the injustices of low prices/ poor labour laws comprise the economies whose protective laws have created an uncompetitve climate and allowed the slow rise in labour casualisation and insecurity.

    In conclusion…the problem we face cannot be solved by financial actions alone. This issue is more structural.

    Ireland’s problem is more magnified by our exposure and intellectual deficit in our leadships across all institutions. We overvalue the intellects who have money (a real sign of a gombeen mentality) over those who can make things happen by effort of leadership and vision.

    So, unless some serious intellectual/ leadership power is applied… Euro/ Dollar will collapse and trade barriers will be re-established in an effort to try and keep communities stable and safe – which is what nationhood is all about lads & ladies!

    • wills

      Philip -

      An excellent ‘paper’ on ‘lord of the flies’ economic cycle.

    • Ruairí

      Agreed Philip, scariest yet. But prescient and realistic and SEEKING a way out of this mess that will see some stability return, including opportunity for those who are blameless and inflation of debts for those who weren’t.
      David pulls no punches with regards to the thinking capacity of the Dept of Finance. This article is a call to action, a ‘balls-out’ call to action, as it were, ladies and gentlemen. A full-on proposition of serious magnitude and exponential possibilities for the nation and the economy.
      I am intrigued at how it would work, I can only assume david is advocating or presaging the fracturing of the EMU?

      Note to peers! “Originally referred to the governor on old steam engines that had two ball that rotated across one another that would control speed depending on how fast they spun. Balls out meant going full speed or power.”

  17. wills

    Posters -
    POWER ELITE DELUSIONS.

    RISK, MONOPOLY and CHESS.

    IF I CANT HAVE IT NOBODY CAN.

    PEOPLE ARE PLAY THINGS IS THE GAME.

  18. G

    More than 49 million Americans–or one in seven–struggled to find enough to eat last year, according to a report from the US Department of Agriculture released Monday. That’s the highest total since the federal government began keeping track of food insecurity.
    http://www.democracynow.org/2009/11/17/raj_patel_on_americans_growing_hunger

    The world as we know it is crumbling, power shift east, interesting times! I wonder when the Chinese start intervening in countries will they use ‘depleted uranium shells’, ‘smart bombs’, ‘bunker busters’, ‘daisy cutters’, ‘hell fire missiles’, ‘apache helicopters, ‘drones’, solider robots
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/technology/6700691.stm

    You really have to wonder about humans with the finanical meltdown, world conflict and environmental catastrophy this race is failing.

  19. We do have to get back to basics to find our new direction and our new journey .What we have learned in the world of education is no longer food for the soul or the mind .We need to create our own economics , our own scarce resources , our own values and our own respect to others .We must learn to Empower Ourselves first and last and then move on from there .Until that is done we are going nowhere .What went round comes round .What happened in the past repeats again.Either we learn in Captivity or by free choice .Time is passing.
    I honestly believe in the ‘way of the monks’. And herein lies our real destiny and new economics.To go forward we must take a step back into the future and print our own exchange mechanism to buy and sell .This can be parallel to our own Euro as we know it or deflate the irish Euro completely to 40% or someone will do it for us if we dont.
    Depending on others now for too much is no longer an option .We need to create our own time capsule to survive and learn ‘to experience the journey’ and not being obsessed with the speed from A to B .

  20. MK1

    Hi David,

    We dont have the tool available to us of printing money. Its not in our sole remit so forget about it.

    However, the ECB is effectively doing that to some extent with some quantitative easing and increasing its credit lines. But thats across all the euro-land area, so it doesnt give an ireland-only advantage which is what you are hoping for. Additionally, many other central banks have done likewise so its a case of who is “printing” the money the fastest.

    I did read some of the other comments and I think that both options should be selected, namely, we should Nationalise and radically reform our sick banks, AND we could create a new (no legacy) state-backed bank. For those that shout we already have An Post this is not a proper bank and doesnt operate as a bank, hands up anybody who got a mortgage from it or a business loan!

    In a perfect world, we would not have to set up a new bank because we could get the reform done quickly in our sick banks. In practice, the banks are reluctant to reform and some have the attitude of ‘over my dead body’. It may come to that.

    Banking reform is essential and so far its Ireland “nul points” (pwa). We have not even started at the tip of the iceberg. The politicos rant about changing the board etc. But banks have problems which are culturally endemic and deep rooted, all the way down to the front desk clerk. They need MAJOR REFORM. Dare I say it again David, that BOIL NEEDS LANCING!

    DavidMcW> the wealth of the country will just keep on shrinking.

    But this is not wrong nor a bad thing when asset classes of a certain nature get out of line with ‘fundamental long term values’. My theory is that asset prices are never correct at any point in time as they will be either overpriced or underpriced depending on the human interpretations, expectation and perceived supply and demand. Its not all supply and demand Deco.

    But like the tulips, if our property was way way way overvalued, it makes sense that it comes way way down in price (and in real term values). With deflation of real other costs and services, houses will have to come down by even more in nominal terms. All economists need to use real data rather than nominal data.

    Garry – I dont have the time to read all the responses, such is life.

    MK1

    • wills

      MK1 –

      We do have the tool available to us of printing money.

    • Ruairí

      MK1, well posted.

      p.s. Thankfully your Brian-Lenihanesque stance on not reading the required reading is not sytemically-challenging here! Hopefully El Leno IS doing all of his homework now and not cogging.
      Have to say I greatly enjoy your posts. When we are all on ECB dole, there will be time enough to read all the posts! There are some rich pickings.

    • Malcolm McClure

      MK1: I agree that we don’t have the tools to do this, and it even suggests that David is losing his marbles.
      He might as well suggest that we send Bertie to North Korea where he could smooch them to print a few billion bent Euro for us, then launder them in Monte Carlo. When he returned he’d convince us that he won it at the tables and wanted to make amends for his maladministration by paying off all our debts..
      Imaginationland: It just ain’t gonna happen.

  21. David , while I have agreed with you over the years on what was happening when the main stream media was still hyping up the ‘economy’ . Things are different now.
    Rents are only falling on vacant units , not on existing premises or houses as landlords are still putting the squeeze on.
    We Cannot Print Money , wake up David we are part of a European Currency .
    1900 copies of your latest book sold just shows really how much influence you now have on modern pop culture.
    And FARMLEIGH …..where is that Business Plan ?
    We are in a BaNAMA republic and a revolution is needed here to shift the political set who have no concept of what is happening when they have surrounded them selves with yes men and all their advisers .
    Ireland is a F$£Kin Joke a nation of over 4 million ( a big English City ) and we are been led by incompetence.
    Bring on The Budget and let the civil unrest begin .

    • wills

      BrenadanW

      We do have the tool available to us of printing money.

    • wills

      BrendanW -

      There are report s on ‘distribution’ low deliveries to keep the number sales down.

      I checked out a local book shop and the stock was all sold out. The owner only received a very very low amount, had ordered high amount and did not arrive.

      Go figure, surprise, particularly when you tell the truth and de program the dupes in easy book language and offer simple common sensical ideas that work.

      But, some people do not really really want this do they brendan.

      When it gets down to the real action and talk , there are those who are prepared to use violence on their neighbour to preserve they’re comfy womfy thumbsucking set up.

    • Colin_in_exile

      Brendan,

      “Rents are only falling on vacant units , not on existing premises or houses as landlords are still putting the squeeze on.”

      Surely such tennants can move from their current overpriced rental to a new 1999 level property priced rental? Time to give the landlords a good squeeze in the goolies. This alone is news to put a pep in my step.

      Poor auld Riggs must be worried. Any comment to make Riggs?

      Brendan, can you provide a link to the 1900 copies sold info you shared?

      • Heard it From Ray dArcy on todayfm this morning , or show after , so don’t have a web link unless I get you the pod cast of the show.
        Another factor showing David is been pushed out.
        Why is he not one of the ’5 Angry Men tour’ ?,

    • The Eye

      Huraaah…off with their heads,
      no pain no gain.

    • Ruairí

      We cannot print money? In that case, the USA should drop its extradition case against Sean Garland for ‘allegedly’ doing what you say can’t be done? ;-) I jest BrendanW. Should be said that all Sean was ‘allegedly’ accused of doing is what Bernanke the Magnificent is doing by the warehouse-load. 14 times the money supply in the last few years. Wowee wowsers…….

      Enough joking. This should be a great time for Dell Printer sales down in Bray. At least someone will get a bit of the aul Tiger.

    • wills

      G – Celente shoots from the hip!

      • G

        Yes indeed, a straight talker, we could use a few like him in this Republic………..but the system doesn’t encourage it, over crowded class rooms, a desire to keep the students quiet, pressure of the Leaving Cert with its rote learning, uber competition for jobs, questionable third level education (mostly highly theoretical and of dubious quality despite the prevalence of the word ‘world class’, normally emanating from President’s who award themselves handsomely), the wink and elbow language of delight, no moral leadership from any institution, no inspirational figure in politics, it is a dark time to be Irish…………

        You can criticise the Americans for a lot, but they do produce some amazing people with some innovative ideas, they have that revolutionary spirit at grass roots level and most of all they are prepared to speak up and act

        See: http://www.socialistreview.org.uk/article.php?articlenumber=11018

        Bankers Ball Protest
        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QBTmernxUd0

        An American posted this on a website recently:

        “All the media talk is about the crucial decision that Obama faces in Afghanistan. Whether to give in to the generals, and allow the war to expand.

        But while speculation regarding Obama’s decision about expanding the Afghanistan War, Obama has a multiplicity of other foreign policy decisions, and an array of domestic economic goals he wants to pursue in the U.S.

        Has any president, has any leader, ever had so many critical decisions to make at one time?

        Has any leader ever had such a problem in dealing with critical domestic issues that mean so much to him, and yet had such risks to his plans and hopes caused by a foreign war he would rather not have to speak about?

        Like Obama, Rev. Martin Luther King was confronted with a similar monumental decision about whether to speak-out against the imperialist war ‘abroad’, that was grinding up the working-class sons of both black and white Americans, or to continue focusing on his most heart-felt problem ‘at home’ of inequality and racism.

        For more than a year, Rev. King kept his focus on the racial battle at home, and would not be detoured by addressing the combination of multiple issues that would inevitably spring from taking-on the crimes of imperialist foreign war, domestic racism, and the ‘class-warfare’ that linked these crimes of Empire.

        Finally, on April 4th, 1967, and at the Riverside Church, Dr. King decided that it was “A Time to Break Silence” not only about Vietnam, but Beyond Vietnam, and to speak truth about the nature of Empire and the class-war that Empire always uses to maintain its unfair, unjust, and un-democratic control of power both ‘abroad’ and ‘at home’.

        Hopefully, Obama will reach the same monumental decision as Dr. King — and even more hopefully, average Americans of all colors will respond to a seminal ‘outing’ of Empire by recognizing their common humanity and their common ‘public interest’ in democracy (against the ‘private interest’ of Empire), and by treating this 21st century messenger and leader against Empire differently than Dr. King was treated.

        I hope that Obama is benefiting, in his time of decision, from taking the time to re-read King’s Riverside speech:

        http://www.americanrhetoric.com/speeches/mlkatimetobreaksilence.htm

        King noted, “The war in Vietnam is but a symptom of a far deeper malady within the American spirit”

        And today, hopefully, Obama will take note that, “The war in [fill in the blank____________] is but a symptom of a far deeper malady within the American spirit”

        King continued:

        “It is with such activity in mind that the words of the late John F. Kennedy come back to haunt us. Five years ago he said, “Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable.” Increasingly, by choice or by accident, this is the role our nation has taken, the role of those who make peaceful revolution impossible by refusing to give up the privileges and the pleasures that come from the immense profits of overseas investments. … When machines and computers, profit motives and property rights, are considered more important than people, the giant triplets of racism, extreme materialism, and militarism are incapable of being conquered.”

        Finally, King concludes with, “If we will make the right choice, we will be able to transform the jangling discords of our world into a beautiful symphony of brotherhood.”

        I hope that Obama recognizes that those “giant triplets of racism, extreme materialism, and militarism”, plus the arrogance of super-power (as Francis Fukuyama now recognizes) are really the shadow of EMPIRE — even if it is presented under the veil of sweet sounding speeches and through the facade of ‘Vichy’ democracy.

        I can only hope that Obama recognizes that what makes peaceful revolution impossible is EMPIRE — and that he soon shares this terrible truth with the American people, that the Empire is posing as us, the U.S.”

        • wills

          G -
          Very informing thesis on empire in our world to day.

          For me, empire is a construct of the ‘owners’ of the means of production and resources.

          The construct / empire is taken care of business.

          It’s business of to day is finance, finance pay’s the best in profits.

          Finance bonanza funded mercantilist class coupled with a technological revolution providing new undreamed of educational opportunities for the serf class and the net result is a ruling class push for deepening surveillance matrix too tightening up its power base control too counter the potential over turn on their wealth producing power centers such as a corrupt monetary money making machine.

        • All a LOAD of Cod Wallop , Obama is simply there because of big finance and buying of radio , tv and clever use of the internet .
          He is Not going to be the Man to make a new American system .
          They’ll give him a bad dose of swine flu and knock him off , if it even looks like he’s changing the system .
          Wake up G

          • G

            @ BrendanW, I am under no illustions, he is ‘Brand Obama’, I wrote a critique of his presidency for a local newspaper where I state the following:

            “It would seem that ‘Brand Obama’, that creation of the advertising industry during the 2008 presidential election, is slowly unravelling to reveal an inexperienced politician, beset by crises that seem destined to doom his presidency before it has begun.”

            I think there is a strong chance that he will be gone after term 1 (something Gore Vidal has stated), depends if the Republicans can find a suitable candidate. The indecision over Afghanistan, bailing out the banks, ham fisted effort at Health Care, may doom him.

            I posted the full comment from the American because I wanted to do the person justice but also I found the Martin Luther King section interesting, especially King’s speech on Vietnam, which I would encourage everyone to read.

            Obama is a centrist Democrat (a right winger if he was in Europe), who will tinkle with policy, but so far his Middle Eastern policy is in tatters, he failed to land the Olympics, and Afghanistan will brand him as a failed war president, the game is up and the ‘United States’ may in the next 20 years disintegrate as a nation state, a bit like Rome, disaster by a thousand cuts, external pressures from wars etc, internal disaster from the system of greed it has come to represent, house has to fall.

        • Colin_in_exile

          Agree with Brendan here. Roots to the problem USA faces now lie with the first real black American President, Bill Clinton.

          Obama is a nice guy, I’d sure like to have a beer with him in my garden, but I believe he doesn’t have America’s best interests at heart, and it won’t be long before he’s found out.

          Note, Israel went ahead with more settlements today, a clear two fingers to Obama and his peace process attempts.
          http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/middle_east/8366596.stm

          Israelis know Obama is siding with the Muslim world, his disgraceful Cairo speech being a wake up call to Israelis.
          http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/middle_east/8082676.stm

          And Fort Hood happens and this is what Americans have to tolerate
          http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/americas/8353248.stm

  22. Deco

    Printing money….the only available option for a society that cannot earn enough money from honest hard work…..to pay for all of it’s unrestrained excesses of consumption

    I see that there are 25000 Irish fans chasing French fans with money to get into a stadium and support and Irish team….that are already beaten. The French fans who will sell them their tickets are being labelled unpatriotic by the Irish media. I suppose labelling them as intelligent or good capitalists would be impossible. Anyway, Harney’s Atlas probably has Ireland located closer to Boston than Bordeaux :)))

    The Irish fans would be far more patriotic if they stayed at home and spent their money in our hotels (empty) or our pubs (who claim to be closing down). It would at least leave the French with less of a vomit mess to clean up. But I know that in saying all of this I have now taken a swipe at a whole herd of sacred cows.

    Ireland has lost the plot.

    We could all learn from the Kerry football fans who only go to Croke Park in the months of August and September.

    The bottom line is that the lemming mentality has survived. So basically intellectually we are still screwed. And that means in all other areas, nothing will be solved for a long time.

    • wills

      Deco -

      We can assume responsibility on a personal basis and see what happens.

      We can keep at it understanding the nature of the thumbsucking POnzi scammer beast.

      YES, WE, CAN !!!!!!!

    • Ruairí

      Deco,

      I agree with you on most things but I do not agree with your stance on demonstrated patriotism: -
      “The Irish fans would be far more patriotic if they stayed at home and spent their money in our hotels (empty) or our pubs (who claim to be closing down)”
      I disagree wholeheartedly with this guiding rule of thumb.
      The Irish fans would be FAR better off if they bought as much mobile goods as they could legally bring back (below duty limits) when in Paris and look after their families.
      I voted NO to Lisbon I and II for a number of reasons. The issues were complex. The fruits of a Yes vote will be all-apparent in 1, 2 and 3 years time when hopefully Declan Ganley will re-appear like the ghost of referendums past to call Ebeneezers Cowen and Kenny to account. where are the jobs, where is the recovery blatantly promised on their referendum posters (Were they referring to discreet ECB supports or turning the blind eye against competition rules until we got our sh1t together?)?
      Irish football fans and Irish patriots would be well advised to help the local mechanic who does a fair day’s work, to help the hotel who offers a good deal and great service, to help those who have a longterm reputation in their respective specialist sectors and to boycott those who gained tax reliefs in order to build hotels, knowing nothing and caring not a jot about the hospitality industry. Similarly with nursing homes and all other such tax shelter abominations.
      Irish fans should use their reduced sovereignty (from a legal not a moral perspective I might add; I’m still Irish, Europe is OVER THERE !!) to buy safely and more securely than the high street online across the EU. I just bought car-lamps from Latvia for half the price of the cheapest online guys in Ireland. I bought a car radiator from our brothers in the UK for 1/4 of what an Audi dealer would have charged me for my old car. I can now use my saved money to exponentially affect my life and those I choose to help, not line the pockets of landvirus-infected retailers here.
      I buy local wherever possible but when the voice of chambers of commerce and almost every ‘local’ organisation in Ireland was ‘bastardised’ in order to reduce my democratic sovereignty, then I will reduce my dealings with such companies and only help those who offer genuine value and seek a decent life for all.
      I do accept nuances of your argument though. we have farmers always bleating about buying Irish produce only, yet if you were to examine their spend, you would find foreign holidays, foreign produce etc etc. Patriotism is practically non-existent in Ireland, in a country majority-governed by a so-called republican party.
      The irish fans should marvel at the transport systems in Paris and perhaps take back at least pictures of same that they can give to their grandchildren and say, look France and the rest of the EU had what we have now over 50 years ago.
      Ballygobackwards…..

      Other than that, I agree with your pertinent and forceful posts!

      • wills

        Ruairi -

        I heard a ‘guarantee irish’ ad on the meeja other day, which is illegal now??!!

      • G

        Excellent, lived in Paris, miss it, especially the metro and integrated transport system, an impressive city that works and brings in the tourists and revenue, yes there are issues too, but the thrust of your comment is spot on, all the precedents exist in the world, and many have been viewed by our councillors on those lavish junkets….infrastructure such as broadband etc should have been hammered home…….there are no reasons for failure but plenty of excuses………

        BTW, Cork City had an excellent tram system in the 1920s but it was all ripped up by people with no vision……………….

        • Ruairí

          And Todd Andrews went on to master that skill-set (he modelled himself on the TAN work in Cork, loved ripping up infrastructural masterpieces). He was unusual in FF families in that they can trace professional comedians (him, David Andrews, Barry andrews, Dave McSavage) the whole way back to the state’s and FF’s foundation. Unlike Ardal O’Hanlon, Mary Coughlan, Brian Lenihan and Brian Cowen, who are pioneering where their parents never ventured. brave souls.
          Incidentally, Colin In Exile, I shall beat you to the punch when I concede that Todd was one of ‘those’ types of so-called republicans. Me-feiner thug. With no vision. For the people anyway.

          • Deco

            I am rolling over with laughter. I forgot that the Family Firm (as David describes them in his book) has two trades of prominence.
            i) Political control
            ii) Comedy acts.

            Actually really it is only one trade….comedy acts…

          • Deco

            Let’s not forget that when Todd was in power as a minister, Ford in Cork was a corporate employer. Todd was also an excellent fundraier along with Sean Lemass.
            I just wonder…..???

          • Colin_in_exile

            For people who do not know / remember Todd Andrews,
            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Todd_Andrews
            Plenty of humour there.

            How in God’s name did that gobshite continue to be elected by his constituents?…..Oh, I know now, he told everyone that he was a good Republican. Job done.

            Note: Ireland is in Europe, we’re a European island, off another European island, off Continental Europe. The same way Sri Lanka is in Asia, no one suggests they are not Asians. We are Europeans, but we are not Continental Europeans. Continental Europe should not be referred to as Europe, because how can you say you are going to Europe when you are already in it?

        • wills

          same thing happened in Dublin too G.

        • Dilly

          The last of Dublin’s tramlines were pulled up in 1988 “oh we wont be needing these, trams are for peasants”. Sure look at Bertie Ahern, slagging off pencil’s when they unveiled the electronic voting machines ffs !!.

      • Deco

        Ruairi – your advice to the average fan is relevant. They would do well to try to learn something.

        Unfortunately, due to the pervalent and persistent myths reseident in Irish societal thinking, as guided by the commercial establishment, as expressed in mandates for the Publican Party – no chance. The average Irish fan is over there to show the average French citizen how to get drunk on English beer(because Guinness is owned by a British multinational), vomit on French streets, urinate in French gardens, loudmouth at French women, and generally behave like a bunch of clowns. And that is without getting around to the behaviour of the national “leadership”. We can expect loads of politicians and the remnants of the speculator class show up in a superficial, euphoric and wholely ridiculous episode of ‘warp the green flag around’ BS.

        Yes, the Irish fans in Paris to show the French something. The message the French will get is that there are a lot of Irish people who behave like the worst elements of the English. Except the Irish have absolutely no remorse for such behaviour. The French will see that all sorts of idiocracry are the “doen way of doing things” in Ireland.

        • wills

          Deco – you are on a roll to – day and i’m running alongside you brother.

          • Deco

            Wills – thank you brother. Your comments hit the spot, and are encouragement to be also. With you also brother.

        • Colin_in_exile

          I’m really enjoying the comments.

          Does anyone have a comment to make on how 25,000 can travel to Paris midweek and return to a country whose economy is in the toilet? Are these fans employed? If so, please tell me what they’re employed at because I’d love to get my piece of the action. Money for hotels, booze, fags, taxis, flights, taxis, match tickets, whores…….. how can you keep up with them? They hardly saved their annual leave from work for November. And this isn’t the professional classes who support the rugby, this is the working class man’s sport. If the French think this is your typical Irish working class lifestyle, they’ll start thinking Ireland is the land of milk and honey.

          • wills

            Yep, i can. There is a class of people in ireland across the social spectrum top down in cahoots with each other who pilfer their income of the backs of the rest of the community through their sly rent seeking system.

            So, alot of the sc called ‘fans’ in paris are made up of these modern day rent seeker class.

          • These figures , like others are spun.
            A lot of ‘the Irish’ travelled from UK, and mainland Europe . But of course a lot from here are those who know how to play the system

        • Dilly

          I know two developers son’s who pal around together, and at the height of the boom they trashed a hotel room on a weekend away. All they did was pay for the damage, move hotel, and carry on with their session. It became just a big joke, and they boasted about it. I know that not everyone is like this, but, at the same time, there are far too many on this Island who are.

      • tony_murphy

        In a way I’m glad Ireland didn’t win. We all know Fianna Fail would have taken the credit, and they would have being believed by the many morons in the country.

        • G

          The lack of ‘bread and circus’ may focus the Irish mind on the need for change, the distraction of the world cup has bailed out many a regime, we need to focus and turn this country around, surrounding the Dail would be a good start, let us have no more distractions, let us look at these problems head on, the pay for bankers, the corruption at higher levels, and let us do something about it………

  23. Deco

    We will be sending our politicians back to Paris to beg for French support for the ECB bainling us out, after buying tickets from their fans at outrageuous prices, and vommitting on their streets. Loaded with contradictions and hypocrisy, there are Irish people in Paris looking down their noses at the French. In life we do not get everything that we ask for. But we should expect to get the results that our behaviour and thinking deserves. Few in Ireland seem to grasp that.

    • Ruairí

      “But we should expect to get the results that our behaviour and thinking deserves. Few in Ireland seem to grasp that”
      100% correct. I society does get what it deserves. We deserve (from a pragmatic cause and effect viewpoint) where we are today because we chose to re-vote in FF, we chose to protest in our hundreds against NAMA but thousands against more minor affairs. We choose to believe in LTEV, those of us who have high stakes and this throw of the dice means we had a successful innings or didn’t. You don’t get rich in ireland by hard work, you get rich by wheezes. If NAMA doesn’t work, we’ll have thousands upon thousands of shattered property speculators. We’ll also have a smaller generation though, of different-thinking people, who strike hard and strike a good lifetime value on their ‘HOME’.
      As a Man thinketh, so he becometh. Required reading for the cabinet. It would seem a classical education might have done most of them no harm. The jury’s out on citizen Lenihan and what effect his edumacashiion will have on his ‘right-thinking’ mind. I personally don’t believe he’s the Beowulf panacea you are all (mostly) juxtapositioning him to be……..

      • Deco

        { As a Man thinketh, so he becometh. }

        Exactly. I would merge this with the quotation from Albert Einstein.
        [ We cannot solve a problem with the same level of thinking that created it ].
        It seems to me that there is a persistent effort being created to maintain the current level of inadequate intellectual activity.(and behaviour also).

        Ireland is a controlled society from an intellectual point of view. Express the “wrong” ideas and you will get marginalised, discredited, etc… This is the price that has to be paid for messing with the processes and market rigging that feeds the gombeen’s margins and livelihoods.

        But now….we have the internet to open it all up. To get transparency. And to develop commentary. To analyze our society free from the dictum of “our corporate sponsors”.

        Sunlight is the best disinfectant :)

        • wills

          Deco – with you all the way on this.

          a forensic examination never before seen to an unheard of accuracy.

          Like Malcolms last article breakdown on DoF. Bravo malcolm.

  24. adamabyss

    subscribe.

  25. Deco

    The Big Question….Why do AIB feel it is desperately necessary to appoint an insider to run AIB ???

    http://www.independent.ie/opinion/analysis/lenihan-and-aib-have-really-played-a-blinder-on-this-one-1946418.html

    Answer – because they need a “safe pair of hands” to maintain the pretence.

  26. Deco

    David you said { We need the same sort of political courage now to do something radical… }

    We need a level of intelligence in the political establishment also, which is severely lacking. Should we be surprised when the largest party in the Dail is what you termed the Family Firm :)))

    Though I am disappointed in George Lee. He has gone strangely silent.

    • Ruairí

      Bizarrely silent Deco.

      I heard Mary O’Rourke on yesterday on George Hook or Matt Cooper where she was extoling the virtues of ‘spinning’ money, effectively keeping people occupied.
      I don’t know if she was a Dan Boyle-type ventriloquist’s puppet for her nephew, saying things with a perspective and detachment that he can’t have, or whether she was speaking from the heart.
      But I will say something about her here. She has a moral grounding, not always correct, I’m sure, but she has advanced years’ experience and a moral grounding. She, unlike so many other of our current politicians, and that includes George Lee, Richard Bruton and Brian Lenihan, is calling for people to be kept ‘working’. At something. to have SOME purpose.
      To go from believing you were a citizen of one of the richest nations to now not having ANY purpose, this will be a major destroying force in our communities.
      As David sagely bears witness: -
      “This credit crunch is felt most drastically in much higher unemployment than is necessary. Unemployment, for anyone who has experienced it in a family, is a most destructive force. The shock is not only financial, but the psychological and emotional cost as well as the stress associated with unemployment is enormous. If you want to see this, ask your local doctor; doctors are seeing people presenting to them who never visited a surgery before.”
      David is remaining very close to the heart and hopes of the Irish nation. If he keeps at this mullarkey, he could be Ché McWilliams in no time! David, I have a motorbike if you want to borrow it?

      • wills

        Merry merry mary spending so much time on the wires, mmmm, dunno,,,, smells like real irish mammy cut of soda bread by the turf fire roll out too sooth the serfs been pollaxed by up coming budget, deco thoughts on Merry merry mary’s meeja tonal mammy schtik please

        • wills

          if you feel so inclined of course, deco, at any time, just the whole ‘mammy by the fire schtik’ with this mind program stuff is just dreadful.

        • Deco

          Ah yes. Mary O’Rourke. The Minister for what exactly. The Minister for Family affairs – seeing as so much of her family is in the Dail.

          Or the Minister for slow trains. I remember being a train commuter a few years ago. She was Minister in charge of CIE. And there was some scandal that broke. She used it as a means of getting silencing a board member appointed by a FG adminstration. I bet the replacement was FF. Oh hold on didn’t Senator Shane Ross write an article in the Sunday Indo a few weeks ago about the head honchos in CIE. All with PhDs in Transport Economics, Automotive Engineering, Accounting, etc…. As usual in Irish semi-state sector. yeah right…watch the pigs fly by….

          Albert Reynolds was the only one in the Dail who knew exactly what to do with Mary O’Rourke. He sacked her in the midst of eating a corned beef sandwich. She responded in an annoyed manner. He just told she was no use. She got went into hysterics. He simply ignored her and proceeded to finish the sandwich. Phoenix Magazine proceeded to make persistent sneers at her.

          She went out of circulation for a while. And then Ahern decided that he wanted her in charge of something big. Ahern always found the most useless fools and gave them the most responsibility. It was the defining trait of all Ahern appointments. So O’Rourke was put in charge of the trains. Before you knew it the entire country was annoyed at the state of the transport system. A bus lane was built on the M50, but then it was decided not to use it. It would decrease the profits of the National Toll Road.

          • Deco says
            “Ah yes. Mary O’Rourke. The Minister for what exactly. The Minister for Family affairs — seeing as so much of her family is in the Dail.etc”
            Deco I have to say you have a wonderful understanding of how our political system works.
            “Oh Albert Reynolds-we have need of you this day”
            By the way that´s a gem:
            “Ahern always found the most useless fools and gave them the most responsibility. It was the defining trait of all Ahern appointments.”

  27. G

    Exerpts from interesting article -

    “Our greatest primary task is to put people to work.”
    Franklin D. Roosevelt, Inaugural Address, March 4, 1933

    “Unemployment (US) has reached a 26-year high of 10.2 percent, but the “real” rate of joblessness (underemployment) is now hovering at 17.5 percent. These are Depression-era numbers.

    So, while $11.4 trillion has been used to prop up the financial system, a paltry $250 billion has gone to creating jobs. No wonder unemployment has zoomed to 17.5 percent.

    Originally, Obama assured the public that the $787 billion stimulus package (aka–The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act) would create 3.5 million new jobs. But–even by the administration’s own calculations–less than 1 million jobs have been created so far.

    Put money back in the hands of the people who will spend it (workers) and build a stronger economy where everyone benefits.”
    http://www.counterpunch.org/

  28. Many of the contributions here have an air of unreality about them.

    The economy’s indigenous sector is insignificant compared with the mainly US-owned one.

    The relevant constituency on exiting the euro is Intel, Microsoft etc.

    They supported joining the euro system and the important ones are global companies.

    The world’s second reserve currency is not an inconsequential issue to them.

    As for Ireland’s only transnational company, CRH, which is 90% owned by non-Irish shareholders, is the likes of a company like that going to continue be resident in Ireland after a massive devaluation?

    There are no simple panaceas including devaluation.

    Double-digit mortgage rates and related turmoil could be another self-inflicted disaster like the Civil War.

    Why not try real reform within a growing single currency area?

    There has been no serious reform so far, post the crash.

    Ireland exiting the euro and the risk of setting the Irish economy on fire:
    http://www.finfacts.ie/irishfinancenews/article_1018459.shtml

    • Deco

      CRH – 90% by non-Irish shareholders. But if it was mismanaged or threatened with bankruptcy, the useless wasters running it would run to the Irish political establishmnet, press the “green flag” button, and get a bailout from every PAYE taxpayer.

      The entire bailout policy for private sector (rich) enterprises is corrupt. It is sold as some sort of ‘national emergency’. Nonsense. A national emergency is what happens when you have debt that is growing out of control, and Brian Lenihan telling you that NAMA is not part of the national debt.

    • liam

      MH, that’s a very interesting point of view you set out in your linked article, thank you.

  29. gadfly55

    Deco, yourself and Kynos on the daily Irish Times poll in the comment section at least give me some hope that there are a few persons with enough wit and perspective to make sense. Unfortunately, the cultural capture by the RTE timeserving tycoons, and most of the print media stooges who wouldn’t be able to upset an apple cart in an avalanche for fear of offending their paymaster, has left this country bereft of a language or critique capable of achieving a consensus for political reform and progression away from clientilist tribalism. Already, there is a proposal for Donegal to establish itself as an off-shore tax haven, and Kilkenny is devising its own currency. When people are scurrying to save their own skin, then the political servants of the master classes can proceed with their consolidation of power and dominance of all organs of control and opinion formation. Eventually, those crying alone in the wilderness retreat to more remote refuge, or lose their minds with delirium or intoxicants. Business as usual then resumes, the poor having lost more to the narrowing group of global elite. The best hope is that the group of 32000 millionaires will have reduced to a few thousand, whose position will become more precarious by the day. As Dickens wrote, “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.” Here’s the times getting much worse, and the calamitous re-adjustment of this nation to European standards of political economy and social cohesion. Unfortunately it won’t happen in my lifetime so I will be going to live on the continent very soon.

    • Deco

      It looks like we are seeing communities across the country coming to the conclusion that D2 is not up to the job. Authority in Ireland is failing. It is the source of too much incompetence, and the destination of an awful lot of nepotism.

  30. nando09

    I am, like many other people in this country, not an expert on the mechanics of economies. Would somebody please take the time to explain how this newly printed money would be distributed? Would it be through capitalisation of the banks? O would there just be a general give-away some bright sunny morning outside the government buildings? I would also like to thank anybody now who replies to this.

  31. @ nando09

    Maybe a type of SSIA without the need for savings!

    At some stage inflation and interest rates would rise.

    The current Bank of Iceland rate is 13% compared with the ECB’s 1%.

  32. Castles were built with walls not with fields or gardens .They acted as a protection not only from the weather but from their enemies .Some printed their own currencies with a head on it .
    Today we may be revisiting the old network of Provincial Economics into second division ‘carrot proof’ and a ‘Pale first division’ ‘carrot proof’.
    Nothing has changed in a long time.

  33. cozzy121

    David, I think now’s the time to start discussing what happens when we default on our national debt. What will happen, will the IMF have to deal with the ECB instead of the irish government. Will the government then be presented with instructions of what to do and have to meekly comply as they are no longer in charge of the country anymore?
    Is that not the true price for being in the euro?

    • Ruairí

      Yes, it would be a step in the right direction while we wait for megatrends to affect the EMU for good or bad.
      This Kilkenny ‘Cat’ currency is similar but predates de Cork initiative boyo! ‘De Payper’ must be thinking very locally themselves still !
      http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/ireland/2009/1114/1224258815778.html?via=mr

      • Deco

        The Kilkenny Cat currency could be interesting. Maybe we can use it to buy NAMA bonds. Oh, sorry forgot, nobody in Kilkenny would be that stupid as to buy NAMA bonds. Therefore the government does that for the people of Kilkenny and everywhere else.

        • Deco

          I forgot to add….the goverment is filled with people that have the required level os stupidity required to buy NAMA, and the required willingness to make up for the scepticism of the rest of us.

  34. ps200306

    Another cracker of an audience on Frontline the other night — including the 24-year old “businessman” with 700k in unserviceable mortgages. Twenty years ago the average twenty-four year old dreamed of owning his/her first CAR, not a property portfolio that was supposed to look after his/her pension!

    When are we going to “get” that under any conceivable scenario we are all going to be a lot poorer for a long time, because of the stupid things WE collectively did. Getting private debt under control means belt-tightening and an unfortunate but inevitable deflationary spiral for some time to come.

    Printing money is not going to work: it’s illegal (for good reason) to do it privately; we can’t do it nationally because we’ve handed over the reins to the ECB; and leaving the Euro would put us in a much bigger hole than Iceland is in currently. Sure, we could do it and inflate away our debt to the benefit of those who overspent, and of the public sector and the unemployed who could now be paid as much as they want in “Éires” (although they wouldn’t be able to buy much with them). I don’t think the multinationals would hang around long, even if we dropped the corporate tax rate to 0%, so finding private sector employment would be a challenge.

    It’s time to haul the banks into line, nationalise them if necessary, face down the public sector unions with non-negotiable wage cuts, cut welfare spending and the minimum wage, abolish quangos and look for vicious public expenditure savings in all areas. Reduce VAT and income taxes but lower the thresholds, tax child benefit, incentivise men or women willing to leave the workforce to look after children. Appoint independent overseers on bankers salaries, and public sector salaries (including TDs). Audit all public expenditure including expenses for all public employees (including TDs). Audit Dáil attendance, and reduce the number of TDs, Senators and Local Councillors. Make the entire raw database instantly available publicly and online for analysis by anyone who cares to download it over their multi-megabit nationally available broadband.

    … or admit that we’re never going to get our sh1t in order on our own and call in the IMF sooner rather than later.

    • wills

      ps200306 – IS THE “WE” an ironic quip – hopeso, cos if it ain’t i just want to re assure you the disgusting rabid greed destruction of our community has absolutely zero to do with me.

      • ps200306

        Nor with me, I can assure you Wills. But no, that “WE” is not intended to be ironic. I don’t think I would be exceptional in knowing a LOT of people who did at least one of: 1) lying about their income to get a mortgage bigger than they could afford, 2) using equity in their home to fund credit card debt that was spent frivolously 3) taking out multiple mortgages to speculate on property (and ignoring warnings that “your investment may go down as well as up”, 4) failing to realise the dangers of historically low interest rates. 5) failing to use the basic primary school arithmetic necessary to work out what an “affordable” mortgage is (regardless of what the bank says)

        I’m not saying everyone did it. But a helluva lot did. I don’t buy this crap about being suckered by banks and politicians. Anyone who can’t do basic sums, or who plunged in with feckless disregard for consequence is reaping what they sowed, and they’re taking those of us who refused to be suckered down with them.

        • wills

          thats a relief then.

          On the point relating to the idea that there are those who took out Bubble mortgages and got taken too the cleaners by banksters, property developer rip off merchants, builder rip off merchants and legal eagle rip off merchants and they were preyed upon is a fact.

          Whether you like it or not is a different matter. Welcome on board to the blog.

          • ps200306

            I’m not saying it’s not a fact. I’m just relaying my experience which, while anecdotal, is not out of the ordinary I would suspect.

            I know a lot of people who did the things I listed. I don’t know anyone who was ripped off or preyed upon. Unless you call paying a price that you should have known you couldn’t afford being “preyed upon”. I threw my hands in the air at Dublin property prices more than ten years ago and I can guarantee you I earn one helluva lot more than many of the poor preyed-upon people in those Frontline audiences. If DMcW is right, prices are resetting to 10 years ago and I’m STILL not interested.

            If there really are genuine rip-off merchants and financial predators out there then I hope (along with you, I’m sure) that they are prosecuted will the full force of law.

          • wills

            ‘paying a price that you should have known you could not afford’.

            There are those who are in the possession of sense of self that provides them with such judgement and i am one of them. THEN

            there are those who are not. And these are ‘susceptible to persuasion’ through a number of things like for example the stuff Deco brilliantly posts on, like for example those who are,

            Traumatised and living in fear.
            Brainwashed.
            Bullied.
            Insecure.

            And these are the people who are going to be taken too the cleaners by the sh!ts who conned them into thinking if they do not buy now they’ll never be able too in the future cos the prices will never go down and this is not a bubble. Do you remember that propaganda pumping out all over the place like vomit.

            Well there is a reason for this con drivel. It worked on some and not on others. It;s the some who were driven into it by fear who i speak of.

          • ps200306

            I take that point wills. I am sure there are many people in that category. However, remember that even many of the builders got sucked into a spiral of greed that saw them losing their previous gains when the bubble burst. They were not bullied or insecure, or in any way coerced. In between those who were coerced and those who weren’t there is a wide swathe of those who were swept along by a feel-good factor and a belief that the good times (which they couldn’t afford in the first place) would never end.

  35. George Lee said that the IMF cannot be called into a small regional country in a larger currency union.
    The Irish problem (and more besides) is Berlin´s
    Do you think the army would support a coup détat.?
    Or is their leadership stuffed with Fianna Fail crony generals and “insiders” too.?

  36. Jill Kerby

    Hope you don’t mind a little history lesson, but this idea that Roosevelt’s turning on the printing presses at the Fed was the beginning of the end of the Great Depression is a myth. The contrarian (Austrian) view that I share is that Roosevelt’s intervention – just like Hoover’s before him (who it is claimed did nothing to prevent the economic downturn after October 1929) – turned what would have been a very serious business cycle recession into the Great Depression.

    First, at the end of November 1929 Hoover twisted the arms of leading US industrialists and business leaders to maintain wages, hours worked etc – at the expense of profits – in order to NOT cause economic price deflation. Real wages rose because prices were plummeting, but soon enough, jobs collapsed as the cost of employment soared. (Sound familiar?) Nevertheless, this policy was kept in place and between 1929 and 1933 wage rates actually rose by 3% per annum while unemployment hit a peak of 24.9%.

    Hoover idiotically introduced the Smoot-Hawley Tarrif Act in 1930 which quickly turned and bit the Americans butts good and hard, but then he also restricted immigrants and approved mass deportation of foreign workers. Then the piece de resistance: contrary to the view that Hoover cruelly slashed spending and declined to ‘stimulate’ the US economy, he in fact he cranked up spending from 1930-33, increasing the US budget by a whopping 42% despite a massive fall in tax revenue. He cut spending by increased taxes by far more – not only did personal and corporate income taxes soar with surtaxes on the highest incomes rising from 25% to 63% in 1932 (Jack O’Connor would think all his Christmas’s had come true if that happened here) but WWI surcharges were introduced – sales taxes were placed on petrol, tires, cards, electricity bills, malt, toiletries, furs, jewellery; new stamp duties were introduced on bank cheques, bond transfers, telephone bills,, etc, etc. From 1929 Hoover also started pouring money into the newly created Federal Farm Board to prop up farm gate prices and to provide low cost loans to farmers (a total of $600 million by 1930). The Federal Buildings Programme got $400 million in 1930 and $175 million for the Shipping Board. In July 1930 a $915 million public works programme was approved by Congress and $1 billion was lent via the new Reconstruction Finance Corporation to bail out insolvent banks and railroads.

    Hoover lost to Roosevelt because none of these massive spending and stimulus packages worked – no surprise there since we can see the same is not working for Obama today. Roosevelt stepped up all of this another few notches – unemployment kept rising to that nearly 25% high and only fell below 20% in 1935 – it was 14.3% in 1937 because so many people were on Federal make work projects – and rose again to 19% the next year because FDR started to pull back on the stimulus. It was the armaments production from 1939 that started pulling the American economy out of Depression though unemployment remained at 14.6% at the end of 1940 only falling to 9.9% in 1941.

    Canada, which did not resort to the same kind of government intervention during the Depression hit a peak of 19.3% in 1933 but fell back to 9.1% by 1937 and averaged 10% until it dropped to 4.4% in 1941. Instead it took the pain sooner – though it’s close ties to the US economy kept it very depressed until the war effort kicked in from 1940.

    Roosevelt embarked on an overwhelming process of interfering in the US economy that we are still feeling the effect thereof: whether it was in setting up the National Recovery Administration which forbade companies from lowering wages and created massive industrial cartels in the US, especially in industries like energy, transport and finance or the massive interference in the farming sector, by controlling prices. (That resulted in starvation as farmers killed their livestock and churned up those fields that hadn’t disappeared in dust storms because they couldn’t sell their product at even cost price under Roosevelt’s New Deal.)

    Because the US dollar was tied to the price of gold (and amount of gold held on reserve) and there wasn’t sufficient tax coming in to pay for all this spending, Roosevelt decided to steal his own people’s money by confiscating the nation’s gold in April 1933. Gold, then priced at $20.67 per ounce, and after a lengthly bank holiday, the dollar was re-pegged to gold in 1934 at $35 an ounce, a more than 40% depreciation. Talk about printing money.

    Even this daylight robbery didn’t work and the spending and interference by the Roosevelt government continued ad nauseum and just prolonged the terrible effects of the original stock market collapse.

    Few people – even the so-called economic geniuses who espouse the Keynsian spendfest that Hoover and Roosevelt undertook (and Obama is doing now) – remember that a very dramatic recession happened in 1920-21 – the consequence of the serious overspending that took place during the first world war and the immediate post-war period. Then, the Treasury secretary Andrew Mellon kept his nerve: he cut government spending and did nothing. Unemployment soared and there was a brutal wave of bankruptcies… and then it started pulling out, effectively recovering by 1922. He should have done the same in ’29 but Hoover caved in to the banks and to political interests who preferred bailouts to facing up to their own excesses.

    John P Murphy’s, new Politically Incorrect Guide to The Great Depression and the New Deal is the source of the above, but anyone who’d like to read why we are on course for another Great Depression should also read Murray Rothbard’s brilliant essay, The American Depression on http://www.mises.org which he wrote in 1969, three years before Nixon went off the gold standard.

    The more government interferes to try and stop a financial correction – whether through massive bank bailouts or even minor ‘stimulus’ nonsense like car scrappage schemes (what drug is Peter Bacon on now??) – the worse the impact on the real economy.

    This mess has been caused by too much debt. It will be sorted out when it is paid off or written off. It will be painful but printing money is a guaranteed way to prolong the pain, not eliminate it.

    • wills

      The reason why USA economy ‘got stuck’ in the thirties can be also attributed too the american banks refusing to provide credit into the economy on home turf.

      Now, if one move s too europe in the 30′s and takes a look at germany and it’s boom we find the american banks provided quite a large chunk of the credit into the german economy. GO figure eh!!

    • Deco

      Jill Kerby – welcome on board. I have listened to you on the radio, and read your articles. Very good they are too. It is also good to get your perspective on the effectiveness of the previous and current US Federal policy frameworks.

      • ps200306

        I listened to you too … until you become a member of one of those packed audiences on “Frontline”. If I remember right, you suggested that couples with big mortgages in negative equity should post the keys through the letterbox and emigrate. Not especially socially responsible I thought.

        • You dont have to emigrate to post your big mortgage ,negative equity keys through the letter box
          .Some people would look upon this act as a civic duty, the quicker to hasten in real revolution.!

          • ps200306

            And some people would look upon it as theft from your fellow citizen who will be left carrying the can — another case, like the property speculating public who got us into this mess, of deluding yourself that money can be magically created or debt destroyed without consequence for others.

    • jor200

      Absolutely spot on! This is the first piece of real sense I have read on this blog and is the only effective way out of the current problem. Sadly there is no chance of any Irish politician of any party following the logic of what you say.

    • jor200

      Brilliant! Your analysis is the most sensible thing I have read on this topic. Sadly no Irish politican of any party would be prepared to even think any of this, let alone do it.

  37. wills

    Thats some arm twisting hoover was doing, are you sure it wasn/t the other way around!

  38. Tim

    Folks, I am remiss in that I concede that I have not read all the (so many) posts since this morning. (I will, I promise).

    However, I think that the experience that I had this evening does not require knowledge of your posts (though that is an unattested-assumption), rather, I expect, that it is sufficiently unusual that It may be “New” to you; so, here it is:

    I met a great friend of mine this evening and he is a friend that disagrees with me, most of the tim, yet we are still friends and value one-another. He is a private-sector employer who has made his money and continues to do so; He is the same age as my Father, but he can hadle a conflicting conversation without the emotional turmoil that my Father would infuse into it.

    I threw-it-out-there that his generation (Gross-generalisation, I know, but, bear with me) was sexually repressed and that has “shaped” his actions and his life.

    Having accepted that (this man who employs 13 people and treats them all very well) said: “So, Tim, why do you think that I have issues with the Church?”.

    Well, I was floored!

    But my answer was this: “Pat, The Church that you grew-up with repressed you; the “men-in-dresses” curtailed your development, as a person.

    “How did they do that?! said he…

    I have two things to tell you, Pat (says I):

    1) You are a child of the Earth (though he is 66 and this suprised him, somewhat – he hadn’t bee called that in a while!) and the “Men in Dresses” have taken advantage of you.

    (No! They didn’t do that! Says he….)

    I don’t mean: “in that way” (says I) – note, how we Irish love a “Story”?

    I said: “Pat, No. 2 is what the Church took advantage of……..

    that is: the inherent, transcendent, quest for the Divine that is in every human being.”

    The men-in-dresses, simply, turned it into a “Racket”.

    Well, this man, who usually argues with me, said: “I think you’re right, there; that’s very good”.

    I was terribly gratified by “helping” him, even if I am not correct.

    • Tim , are you Gay , or after hitting the bottle ?., ‘The Men in dresses’ have taken advantage of you …… A Dress is something our mother;s and sisters wear , The Men of The cloth wore garments .
      If your after finding out your dads mate might have been ‘abused’ , we also have Teachers, Coaches, Uncles, Nurses and in every walk of life taking advantage of others,
      I don’t see how this talk will help your fathers friend and his 13 employee’s

    • ps200306

      I seem to have developed a penchant for rocking the boat here today, so i might was well go one more.

      This “inherent, transcendent, quest for the Divine that is in every human being” malarky makes me wonder. If DMcW’s “Pope’s Children” are hitting 30, then I guess I am a “Pope’s Early Teen”, in other words I grew up in a more religiously traditional Ireland. I’m pretty gobsmacked by all this Dan-Brownesque New Agey “search for the Divine” stuff. As far as I can see (and this is my honest attempt to assess the situation) today’s “searchers” are more superstitious, gullible, and kow-towing to pseudo-religious fads than anything I saw in the seventies/eighties. I won’t even bother to itemise some of the wackiness I’ve come across, ‘cos the list would be as long as your arm.

      One thing I’m pretty sure about — I wonder would you agree — is that the current downturn in people’s fortunes will lead to more religiosity, and probably a certain conservatism too. An interesting video article I saw once showed how skirt lengths in women’s fashions changed over the course of the 20th century: higher in more affluent times, lower in less affluent ones.

      Whatever happens, the religionists will have to take their share of the pain too — there’s less money sloshing about to pay the tarot reader, the reiki healer, or the traindriver to Knock to watch the sun dance with Joe Coleman.

      • wills

        the monies slooshing and sloshing about all right, only problem is it s hidden away in secret bank accounts.

        • ps200306

          I don’t think the secret account-holders are the train-to-Knock types. I suppose there’s still rich people like Raymond Domenech to pay the astrologers, although after tonight I’m more inclined to think that one’s a case of a pact with the devil.

  39. David,

    What do you think of Peter Schiff’s views on Austrian economics? More to the point, what are your views on it?

    Printing more money is a great short term solution we don’t have the luxury of doing as we are in the Euro. What we need to do is cut our losses, get back the punt and devalue our currency. We have to become a cheap place for businesses once again.

    We need the punt to eventually be backed by gold and silver. Doing these things will be painful in the short-term, but we can always lend more money. Forget NAMA, its a disaster, we need a coup to get rid of our 3 party dictatorial puppets, subservient to the EU.

    We have the police on our side, now all we need is the army on our side for a peaceful revolution.

    We need a gold standard, but we can start with a silver standard currency. That will eliminate any ponzi schemes and allow for fair money. It will also encourage people to save and prevent devastating bubbles.

    What caused the great depression was the American federal reserve in the first place, you should know that. Think about it, where did all this cheap money come from in the first place? Don’t tell me it was Chinese citizen’s savings, not nearly enough. The cheap money was speculation.

    Lets face it, before things are going to get any better we are gonna need a depression to take place. No more bailouts or printing extra money, that’s theft to the middle classes.

    • wills

      Sean – i suspect D is getting at more on the concept of returning the monetary power of printing money to the people and using it too start fixing the economy alongside other solutions like, dropping NAMA and avoiding a triple lock, and, the like in other articles.

  40. JJ Tatten

    I will never eat another croissant as long as I live.

  41. Since we have a lot of American posts here , take a look at this clip , by an English man

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kFi1KlUh5PI&NR=1

  42. and Bill Cullen can fuck of with his Car deal for 250 of those French Cars.
    Our FAI was robbed of Millions ,and what about the kicking RTE have taken ?.
    Shocking and by Henry , of all French Men

    • Deco

      You don’t have to buy one of Bill Cullen’s cars. RTE taking a kicking….don’t worry pal…..Bill O’Herlihy, Grumpy, Giles, George Hamilton, Tony O’Donoghue, etc…plus a contingent of FAI cats will be going to South Africa anyway and it will be paid for by the rest of us. And I presume Martin Cullen will also be going. It would not be possible to hold the event without him being present. The rest of the muppets have to pay with their own hard earned savings. Well that is euphoria and irrationality for you. Press the pride button and just watch what happens. The Lemmins put on a green jersey with Eircom(a fiasco) written on it, and get moving en masse.

      By the way…Did you ever hear of the concept of “bread and circuses” ?

      Yes, the FAI “robbed” of millions is a terrible tragedy in a country where an entire generation has been screwed three or four times totally by a clique of cronies. But robbing people in Deckland is totally legal in Ireland, but the Farce Association of Ireland losing out on more jollies is a crime. But this is the Bertie Ahern moral code. Don’t worry about the reality – nonsense is much more reassuring. And hey, anayway….it is the stuff on TV that is real life now……

      • Deco , spot on I was been ironic and trying to throw in some irony . Of course RTE will have a team out there and regarding the FAI loosing money …..I am not a bit worried

  43. Tull McAdoo

    So we have a few “Austrian” flag wavers still left among us now that the bubble has burst, telling us it’s the Yanks fault for breaking the Gold Standard and all that good stuff. Well it makes a change from the local Gombeen’s telling us it was the Lehman Brothers even though I think the original Brothers died years ago.
    The “insiders” were all Austrian during the boom, telling us about their individual right to pursue their own personal profit, how private property rights were sacred, how we needed little or no Government interference much less any type of collective agreement on Regulation and so on to the point where the mere mention of externalities or statistics pointing to potential problems became synonymous with talking down the Economy and was best dealt with, on the end of a piece of blue rope.
    Now that the shit has hit the fan what do you know but all the cute hoor Austrians have decided to become Keynesian’s and its “where’s me stimulus” “ where’s me bailout”. It’s the Regulators fault for allowing this, he was’nt taking care of prudential lending yada yada. We need a new Roosevelt or Obama or a world war is something to stop us loosing money.
    So who are these “insiders” you speak of Tull. Well their to be found in the DOF, Central Bank, NTMA, NPRF, every Bank/ Building Society/Lending Institution and associated Money Vehicles in the whole bloody State. Their reach extends out to their buddies, clients, consultants, family, friends etc. Their modus operandi has never changed since the foundation of the State. “Insider dealing” about anything that will add to their wealth, be it Land rezoning, property loans, shares or any thing that will turn a bob as they don’t give a flying fcuk about who finds out what, about what, because they control all the key aspects of the Game and are relaxed in the knowledge that no matter how badly they fcuk up, there will be NO consequences, ranks will be closed, etc. with the only sanction being a lump sum + pension payoff should they attract to much attention and risk exposing their fellow Gamesters.
    So lets be very clear here in Ireland. We have NO School of Economics or Doctrine or Philosophy or anything associated with how best to run this Country. What we do have is a corrupt, gombeen, exploitive, banana excuse of a system that promotes inequality to the extent that the gap between the wealthy and the poor has grown every year since 1922.
    If there is anyone naive enough on this forum that thinks that by adopting some school of Economic thinking is all that we need to agree upon then God help us.
    What’s needed here is to Elect People we can trust. Who will clear out these Institutions for once and for all. As Malcolm has pointed out, and with which I agree, Name and shame, one at a time if that’s what it takes until confidence and trust is restored. As of today the Dail has lost the People, and if that trust is not restored then anarchy and stagnation and general civil unrest will come to dominate. As I have said before “ When the Falcon cannot here the Falconer” “when the centre cannot hold”….I shit ye not My friends, I have travelled the World, I have seen this stuff played out before and it aint pretty. Goodnight Ireland. Sleep well.

    • ps200306

      Again, let’s start by looking at the man in the mirror… at least those of us who were FF voters, i.e. the majority (in the sense meant under our PR-STV system). Actually, it’s not just FF voters — it’s the people who re-elected Michael Lowry et al. too, all of us with our fondness for cute-hoorism and who believe that a politician who can look after our interests MUST be one who can at least look after himself.

      Next time round will we be more scrupulous about our voting criteria, more inquiring of those putting themselves forward for our consideration? Past history suggests not. We’ll vote for the most plausible-sounding cute hoor gombeen as usual.

    • tony_murphy

      Thank you Tull. Excellent analysis.

      Politicians in Ireland have always being dreadful. Just think of the horrors of Industrial Schools, the Magdalen Laundries etc.

      There is a lot wrong with many Irish people. A people get the government they deserve. The majority of Irish people deserve the current government.

      I have being speaking to some people in serious negative equity, they still don’t want to know about what David is saying. They want what the government wants – that is for everything to go back to the way it was. They are incredibly thick. The actually think NAMA will save their ass, that is what we are dealing with.

  44. andrewlally

    Sorry, David, you were not clear in your article.
    Do you mean operate a dual currency, similar to the UK’s shortlived proposal to operate the euro on its territory alongside sterling, like what is happening in practice in some parts of Northern Ireland now?
    Or withdraw from EMU?
    Would it be easy to operate a dual currency?
    Would the Eurozone agree to this structural mechanism not just for us but other countries which also find themselves now or in the future in similar predicaments? It would be a kind of “overflow pipe” to operate alongside the main currency, a temporary exile of 5 to 10 year periods for countries to print their own money, devalue their cost bases, then rejoin the euro, retaining the longterm EMU link without harming goodwill or casting doubt about a country’s economic ambitions.

  45. Deco

    http://www.independent.ie/national-news/directors-who-oversaw-systems-nearcollapse-are-still-in-place-1947879.html

    We are still not seeing any form of accoutnability at the top on the banks. The same networks are still in charge. And these banks control the companies on the ISEQ. And the control the credit of the entire economy.

    A lot of power and influence in the hands of a few. A few who have a track record in irresponsible behaviour, recklessness, wastage, etcc…

    • Malcolm McClure

      Deco: The ‘why’ is usually about the close associates of the man. Colm Doherty according to AIB website is:
      Managing Director, AIB Capital Markets. Director of M&T Bank Corporation. Joined AIB International Financial Services in 1988, and became its Managing Director in 1991. Appointed Head of Investment Banking in 1994, and assumed his present position in 1999. Joined the Board in 2003. (Age 50)
      The son of a former Garda Commissioner, Doherty had previously worked with First National Bank of Chicago in Dublin. He began his banking career at ICC — something he has in common with Bank of Ireland’s Mike Soden.
      Doherty is also a director of AIB’s American 22.6% subsidiary, M&T Bank, a recipient of US Tarp funds, which he is being obliged to sell at the bottom of the market to raise capital.
      http://www.tribune.ie/business/news/article/2009/oct/25/cnbc-predicts-aibs-mt-is-in-for-a-rough-ride-ahead/
      Nama is of course modelled on Tarp. Is Doherty the great architect in the sky?

      • wills

        Malcolm – Scintillating.

      • paulmcd

        The CEOs of the largest banks in the United States – many multiples larger in market cap than AIB – which need the help of TARP are being paid only $500,000 per annum approximately 30% less than Colm Doherty.

        Citigroup, once the largest financial institution in the United States, has a CEO, Vikram Pandit, who is offering to work for a salary of $1 (one dollar) and no bonus until such time as the Bank is again profitable. This is despite the fact that Mr Pandit is an innocent party who was parachuted in to rescue the organisation.

      • Malcolm McClure

        Looking further into his background, there are signs that that Doherty could be as clean as they come in banking.
        His father was awarded the 2006 Irish Lifesaving foundation’s Ireland medal with citation: “The 2006 Ireland Medal was awarded to Garda Commissioner Eamonn Doherty Rtd. He is a native of Co. Donegal and joined An Garda Siochana (The Irish Police Service) and rose through the ranks to the position of Garda Commissioner in 1987. On retirement he served on a number of national and international task forces and panels.
        In addition to his many public duties Eamonn is a patron of The Irish Amateur Boxing Association. He was appointed chairperson of the Royal Life Saving Society (RLSS) Ireland Region (overseeing the activities of the RLSS Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland Branches) in the early 1980′s. He retained this role even following promotions and appointment Garda Commissioner until the RLSS was restructured in the early 1990′s. ”
        Let’s wait and see.
        He chairs the Irish Marine Gallantry and Meritorious Service Award body. In rescue he is best known for his chairing of the Doherty Commission which led to the transfer of the service from the Irish Air Corp to the Irish Coast Guard.

  46. Monk’s Minds :
    I have a feeling that some of those monks in Viking times were watching the soccer match last night.with france and exclaimed in their ancient gutturals their refrains of an ancient time and rewriting the following :

    ‘ T’ = the first letter on all Irish Printed Euro Notes
    ( Soccer Win for Ireland ) ;

    ‘ Th’ = is the Viking guttural sound that the Irish Monks heard
    ( Thierry Henry ) ;

    ‘ þ ‘ = is the holy scripture word devised by Irish Monks for the ‘Th ‘ above
    ( Fair Play ) ;

    ‘Th ‘ = are also the same letters introduced by Irish Monks in Ampleforth to the guttural sound introduced into english language as used today
    ( The Rules of The Game ) .

    T = Th = þ

    where T is the cashflow / Soccer Win .

    Soccer is like Economics and when a big country wins against a small country by cheating it is ejecting the smaller country from the League .The same can apply to Ireland in the Euro .

    • wills

      John – the commentary on the ‘hand of god II’ (i will not use frog, too loaded) fascinating.

      All one could hear over and over ‘ah sure we all do it”.

      “sure anyone would do the same thing”

      I would not cheat.

    • ps200306

      Not much new about that “news”. It’s a bit misleading and alarmist to say tankers are “refusing to unload”. That would be like saying Irish house owners in negative equity are refusing to sell their houses at current prices — while true, it does not imply anything illegal or even underhand. While there is a hope or expectation that prices will rise, the rational approach is to sit it out and wait for higher prices ( – probably a forlorn hope as far as Irish house prices are concerned). In the case of oil, speculators are betting heavily on the global recovery — if you check the spot price for oil every day you will see that it moves in lock step with the markets; when the markets are confident oil price goes up in expectation of increased demand, and vice versa. It is a classic bubble.

      Oil that is shipped by tanker leaves port without necessarily having a buyer. The deals are done in transit, and the purchaser has to take delivery within a limited timeframe. What some buyers are doing is renting the tankers (which would otherwise be idle due to reduced demand) so that the oil can be stored. On-land storage around the world is pretty much full up. There is a huge potential downside to the speculator — the tankers are typically rented at a dollar per barrel per month, and since the biggest tankers (VLCCs – Very Large Crude Carriers) can carry 2 million barrels … well you can do the sums. If market confidence fails ( – more a question of when rather than if, in my opinion, since in the absence of any other hiccup high oil prices themselves will trigger another recession eventually), a lot of speculators are going to be a lot poorer.

      Forget about the UK coast — the biggest concentration of oil in floating storage has been off the coast of tiny Malta all summer.

      Here’s a fun live map of world shipping where you can spot it for yourself.

  47. Amazing.!
    First the Property Bubble, in Ireland manipulated by a small group of developers who own(in partnership with NAMA) almost all the land availible for building near our capital city.
    Then the world wide Toxic Bond Bubble.
    Finally the creation of an Oil Bubble
    by manipulating the market supply.!

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