December 10, 2009

Minister and his mandarins forecast neither boom nor why trust them now?

Posted in Irish Economy · 144 comments ·

THIS Budget is unfortunately without any real merit, apart from the national recovery bond idea which is interesting and shows an ability to think logically about where we are at this stage.

But the net result of this Budget will be to make the economy contract more, to make people spend less and gradually to drive this Government further up the economic cul de sac which they have chosen.

Let’s begin with the panglossian world view of the Department of Finance, where the minister said the worst was over. He predicates this view on the ability of the great forecasters of the Department of Finance who have got everything wrong in terms of forecasting the economy since 2000. Why should anyone believe these guys now when they neither foresaw the boom nor the bust?

Yet we are supposed to believe them today when they say that the economy will recover next year and the year after. Can we do a little bit of basic economic forecasting to unravel this nonsense and then see whether the Government’s efforts yesterday will make things better or worse for growth and employment.

At its most basic, the way we calculate economic growth is by adding together four variables: consumption, investment, government spending and exports and then subtracting imports. According to the Government’s figures ( the economy will turn in the second half of next year.

This means that consumption, investment, exports or government expenditure will rise next summer. But where is the logic of this? We know that far from rising, government spending in the economy will fall by billions. So growth won’t come from there.

We also know that investment in the economy will not rise because investment is driven by the return on equity which is the return that an investment in Ireland will give an investor over and above what they can get elsewhere. For Ireland to achieve this state, the productivity of Irish workers has to rise dramatically (which won’t happen) or the price of Irish workers (our wages) has to fall dramatically, which again isn’t going to happen, to bring us in line with our competitors. So why would there be a surge in investment here next summer?

So, the other bit of the equation that could rise is consumption. The mandarins seem to think that when faced with pay cuts and the insecurity of unemployment, we the punters will go out and spend. But the opposite is more likely. We will continue to save and wait until the worst has passed before we spend.

The final piece of this particular spending jigsaw is credit. It takes credit in an economy to get people to spend to generate the growth rates which generate the tax revenue which allows the Government to get the budget deficit under control. But our banks are actively taking credit out of the economy because they are having to increase deposits and reduce lending to make sure that their capital ratios are sufficient. If they are not, the Government will have to come in and buy more of their stock, inject state capital and, in short, nationalise them.

The State doesn’t want to do that, so barring some dramatic change in international market sentiment towards the Irish banks the Government will either have to nationalise them or, if it doesn’t, the marginally private banks will retract credit from the system. In so doing, they will dampen spending, making rubbish of the minister’s claims that the economy will turn next summer.

Finally, exports from Ireland may rise. But as exports didn’t fall in the bust, this can hardly be the turnabout factor. Yes imports into Ireland will fall, but just to show the myopia and inconsistency of the Budget, the car scrappage scheme will increase imports of cars which will cause the import part of the growth figures to rise, reducing the overall growth figure!

So, where does this whole thing make sense? Will it cause a reduction in the central government balance? Will it, in other words, bring us closer to solvency?

The charitable interpretation is that it will bring us a bit closer but the €3bn in savings have already been cancelled out by the €4bn we injected into Anglo Irish Bank. And, obviously, some €6bn more will have to be injected to keep that basket case from folding. So, as long as the banks are still insolvent the prospect of NAMA 2, 3 and 4 is out there because of widespread defaults on mortgages, car loans, credit cards and the like.

Put simply, we are in a debt trap. This means that because prices are falling here by 5pc to 6pc; and interest rates, if you want a loan, are 5pc, the real rate of interest is more than 10pc. When the economy is contracting, this means that the debt dynamics are moving against us.

We need to reflate, either by inflation or growth, but neither is likely. So there is a real danger that the tax take falls further, expenditure rises even after the cuts and the so-called stabilisation of the finances fails badly.

The most important thing about economics is to join the dots. You need to know how everything is related in order to make a definitive statement about how the place runs and is likely to function in the future.

There is little point talking about one bit of the economy without making the links to the other bits.

Yesterday’s Budget was an exercise in this one-sided approach. The minister avoided talking about the elephant in the room, which is the broken banking system. Without making the connection between credit and the rest of the system, we only get a one eyed-view of what is going on.

Plato said that in “the land of the blind, the one eyed-man is king”. Maybe this is precisely what our ambitious minister is hoping for.

  1. Tim

    David, this is spot-on. The only caution I can offer is that it may be even worse than the “one-eyed” problem.

    I saw Cowen being interviewed last night on TV and he bounced in his chair as he said, “What we want is confidence, confidence, confidence!”.

    That may be the idiotically simple explanation for Lenihan’s assertion that “The worst is over”.

    These two gentlemen appear to be of the view that a simple confidence-trick will fix the economy that their slash-and-burn policy has sent deeper down the spiral.

    With €2 billion taken out of the economy last April, the defecit has grown from 6.4% to nearly 12.5% now. The €4 billion being removed now, they seem to believe, will reverse that trend.

    At best, the current helmsmen are confidence-tricksters; the more innocent explanation is that they are stupid; at worst, though, they may be crooked gangsters performing daylight robbery in an inverted Robin-Hoodism: taking money from the poor and giving it to the rich.

  2. tony_murphy

    Fianna Fail are beyond hopeless. They just keep digging

    Eddie Hobbs mentioned on Newstalk that if anyone was going to invest in the bond, they need to ensure returns are linked to inflation – cause he reckons inflation will go crazy from 2011

    Personally I wouldn’t put a cent into Ireland inc regardless of the promised return

  3. Brian Lenihan is the first recorded Slave Trader in recent Irish History and his Budget is a Pipers Dream .He is a Fudger and a ditherer and his procrastination is a dancing act .He is surrounded by dangerous people that we have not really found out and he is protecting their NAMA .

  4. Malcolm McClure

    David says: “At its most basic, the way we calculate economic growth is by adding together four variables: consumption, investment, government spending and exports and then subtracting imports.”
    This omits the key variable in present circumstances, which is the public sector borrowing requirement.
    Lenihan too, carefully avoided much discussion of this subject in his budget speech:
    “Some have argued we should continue to borrow and wait for the economy to grow again before tackling the budget deficit. There are three reasons why this is not a viable proposition.
    First, we know from the 1980s how large deficits, left unchecked, can lead to a dangerous spiral of mounting debt and ever increasing interest payments. Never again should we return to a position where all of our income taxes go to pay interest on the national debt.”
    However, earlier in the day Alistair Darling underlined the dangers of reducing that requiremsnt in his UK Budget speech:
    “Backed by legislation introduced today, the Government will ensure: public sector net borrowing, as a share of GDP, falls every year and is more than halved by 2013-14; and net debt, as a share of GDP, is falling in 2015-16. I believe this is a sensible timetable.
    To consolidate too soon, too quickly or too indiscriminately, as some have proposed, risks delaying the recovery and threatening a longer recession.
    When Japan tightened prematurely in the 1990s it pushed the economy back into recession, making debt and deficits much higher, not lower.

    This underlines the danger in putting on the brakes too suddenly as Lenihan seems to have done.

    • Tim

      Malcolm McClure, absolutely correct – the downward spiral will be accelerated by the budget.

      • wills

        Malcolm and tim -

        ..and an acceleration of a downward spiral in this situation is an intensification of the hoovering up of any real wealth left swilling around post POnzi bubble to be transferred upwards.

    • Deco

      I take everything that NewLabour in the UK say about economics with a pinch of salt. Two weeks ago Gordon Brown said that the Dubai fallout was contained. Then one week later it was revealed that the two biggest banks in Britain were the two of the most exposed loan providers.

      Alistair Darling seems much more honest than Phony Toney and Mr. Bean. But really only time will tell. It is easier balance the budget when you can print money to fill the gap. Only in te long term it a massive drop in real wages.

      • G

        Brown also repeated the mantra that we had seen an ‘end to boom and bust’ cycles, hmmmmmmmm

        Darling only talked of the good stuff, never mentioned the bad stuff a bit like our boy Lenihan, the Brits will borrow and spend, all before the election, then drastic cuts next budget, cynical short termism, to save their political hides, especially given the closing race with the Conservatives.

        Judging by yet more revelations regarding MPs expenses, its all just taxpayers money (and debt), you might as well light it up and smoke it!

        We can’t borrow it seems to stimulate our economy, no New Deal for Ireland, just cuts, taxes, masses of unemployed, and emigration, hmmm, sounds familiar.

        Boom, may or may not return in 2020, but by then Brian and co. will be long gone, and Bertie could be seeing out his days in the Aras, Mary Robinson will be champion of the seminar/hand wringing universe, Mary McAleese host of Ms. Platitiude of the Year Awards……..and the Church will be yet again shocked at accusations of child abuse………..

        Economics is not the only thing that goes in cycles.

        • Deco

          George Hook has promised that if Bertie Ahern goes for President that he will run against him. Hook says that he openly admits to have no qualification whatsoever that makes him suitable for President. It is just that he cannot stand the site of Ahern.

          It will be an anything but Ahern election. If Cowen losese the leadership for FF (bear in mind that there have already been rumblings of dicontent in the backbenches) then Ahern might not get it that handy.

          And besides there is also the ongoing saga at the Tribunals. Maybe the Tribunals might do us a massive favour.

          If Ahern becomes El Presidente, then we are officially a Banana Republic – as things stand we merely function like one.

          • G

            El Bert has the goods on people, and given his performance on the TV3 interview (his narcissism fully to the fore), he feels hard done by, a man more sinned against than sinning.

            Therefore, to his PR cunning plan, the Irish public should feel sorry for this fallen champion, this Drumcondra Don Quixote and restore him to the stature he deserves.

            Arise Sir Bert of the Backbenchers and take your place among the long list of obsequious state servers that is the House of Aras!

  5. gadfly55

    You don’t mention the amounts to go out of the country servicing the debt of all sectors, or the extent of personal indebtedness constraining further borrowing for consumption, conspicuous or otherwise. Any prudent family will batten down the hatches, and save every cent by any means, whether going across the border or purchasing online from the UK. Lenihan is looking good, and trying to show he is in charge, so once again the people can be satisfied that someone has taken charge and will deliver relief for their multifarious demands. Public service bashing will continue like a purge with more job losses, destabilising retirements at senior levels, and relentless erosion of pay to mid-nineties levels to discourage interest in a career in any public sector employment. The shift to a flexible work force, with levels of unemployment consistently above 10% for decades has begun, and the corporate tax rate “brand” of 12.5% will not provide sufficient long-term employment to sustain the economy, never mind provide growth. But the government has now passed the three tests for this year. Next year the chickens who have come home to roost transform into voracious pterodactyls.

    • G

      all the government has to do is threaten the pension status of a lot of the overpaid bluffers in the public service, the dead & expensive weight will move on in no time because they are only interested in their pay, one bluffer here on serious money is ‘considering his position’, he’ll be gone in 6 months, so I would recommend that course of action, leave the low paid alone and watch the dead weight leaving the ship as soon as they feel their finances threatened, all about self-service, no sense of public service (obviously there are exceptions, but to the rule from my perspective, deep in the beast)

      • gadfly55

        Lenihan has anticipated “a destabilising rate of retirement among older civil servants,” and “the pension entitlements of those retiring in 2010 will not be affected”, although if the older public servants were wiser, they would have retired in 2009 to maintain their lump sum at the current level, rather than losing 10000 from reduction in their pay scale from January 1. Personal financial responsibilities and accumulated wealth are more critical factors in early retirement than payscale and pension benefits. If persons in the higher echelons of the public service can see their work is futile in relation to the political masters, further motivation for early resignation can be anticipated. Lenihan makes no reference to this aspect of destabilisation of rate of retirement among senior publicservants.

  6. coldblow

    If only this budget were to turn things round but David is right, and also Macolm above.

    I have come to the conclusion that economics is more art (joining the dots) than science and all the models and data in the world will find it hard to convince me otherwise. The economics profession just didn’t see this coming so massively discount what they say. As for the media cheerleaders I have this image of earnest but unimaginative leaving cert students, ‘worthy but dull’, trotting out pieties and cliches to impress .. well ‘who?’ is an interesting question in its own right.

    Then there’s the Dept. of Finance, dug into their bunker in Merrion Street, waging their futile war of attrition. I quoted from Lee’s history earlier about far from being cold and detached their predecessors of the 30s and 40s were in the grip of feverish emotion. Ronan Fanning (who may have been Lee’s source for this for all I know) wrote recently of Finance’s decisive but veiled role in the McCarthy Report. He provides the gravelly-voiced, man of the people common sense front.

    The majority opinion is not always right although it isn’t necessarily wrong of course. There is some doubt at least about global warming for example (without getting involved there). But the example I have in mind is the opticians/ opthalmic community who have an excellent, but incomplete, understanding of their subject IMO. The big majority still refuse to entertain that myopia is caused by strain, a decision to withhold the imagination as it were, and can be cured or improved by relaxation, despite persuasive evidence to the contrary. (That’s the reason I referred in an earlier post to DMcW’s ‘vision’ The same with the present crowd: within the confines of their box it all makes perfect sense. The opinion writers cry out for ‘leadership’ but in this case, as in many others, doing nothing would be better.

    The dramatic fall off in spending here isn’t just to be accounted for by debt but the fact that Irish people are acutely suspicious of the establishment – they know how it works. Hence all the saving for the raining day – lá na coise tinne.

    Yes, it has been well named: the economics of Stalingrad.

    • sirganya

      I believe that the priciples of economic analysis are sound. Some areas with intricate cause ans effect can be difficult to project but honestly we all know that investments rise and fall and how old is the cliche don’t put all your eggs in one basket. Sources of information are important and as a subscriber to Harpers magazine almost 4 years ago I was able to advise a friend here in New York not to buy. He did and is now in slight negative equity. But not as bad as the friends from home who ignored my advice and now are in trouble, lifetime burden of debt etc. As a musician I obviously have no interest in making any money, ever.. But I could see what was going on. One of my friends countered my advice by telling me his mortgage broker said it would be ok. It was similar to speaking to a fundamentalist. Freud said that the Irish were impervious to psycho analysis. Many Irish take this as a complement but fail to acknowledge the reason which he claimed that the catholic church had done such a bang up job on the Irish psyche that nothing was getting through. An illustrative true story concerns a good friend, an economist who was drinking in Dublin with some mates also economists one of whom had been on the airwaves talking up a flotation his masters had been involved with. For a bit od gas the other lads decided to tell hime they had bought in due to his gilt edged advice. Allegedly he gripped them by the arms and begged them to tell him they had not invested their hard earned into the scam. Against propaganda and lies reason and analysis reach their limits. New York is nice but home is nicer but it has been taken from me by the diciples of Friedman and the removal of any element of community value in the model of the individual that the current theories of economics propound. I recommend the films of Adam Curtis for an enlightened look at the forces that turned the world we lived in in a cold in humane direction. But I believe the experiment has run its course and that society will change course for the better. Pity it was such an expensive lesson. I do believe ireland is a special case and needs some paradigm shifting and various apple carts overturned before all they hold are bannans.

      • jandal

        I understand where you’re coming from. I was going to move back to ireland next year (been away 8 years). In the 80′s I needed to go to England to work, came back in the 90′s, after 9 years of commuting 4 hours a day and still not able to afford a house we said we might as well so somewhere warm where we could end the commute and have a better quality of life. We did that and things have worked out well, even bought a house…but we both miss our family’s and the sense of connectedness to our own culture. Last year we tentatively started to make plans to move back, now we think we may be nuts to do so as there doesn’t appear to be much work going – we’re scared of taking one huge step backwards.

        Its obvious Ireland is in a mess, there have even be programmes on its collapse here – Ireland was once held up as a model of a country doing something right now its a model of ‘how not to do things’ – its portrayed here as a concrete ghost town of half built buildings where employment has stopped and gone into reverse.

        Hearing people talk about Ireland like a ‘loser’ country angers and saddens me, my instinct is to defend however I know that Ireland has no polictical leadership, no white knights in the wings – no hope that the country will be led into better times any year soon.

        I hear from by family how bad things are. My family that work in the public service have been particularly hard hit financially and now, in the budget, yet again the boot has gone in. The majority of public servants do not occupy the higher pay rates and the backlash that has been placed on them is unfair. My brother is a Garda, he has a wife (let go from her job) and two children. He bought a tiny two bedroomed apartment before he got married, they live on top of each other with no hope of being able to move out as the apartment is in serious negative equity and no one is interested buying it anyway. On the job he’s been attacked with knives, syringes – walks in all weather through parts of Dublin you would go – on his own (yes gardai in pairs are a thing of the past) with just his radio if he needs help. He earns his wages, as do other public servants, and is seriously struggling with the cuts made to his salary to date, now the budget brings more. Most people live pay check to pay check – when the unions suggested that public servants take two weeks unpaid leave instead of salary cuts people were up in arms that public servants would get two weeks extra “holidays” – how can people be so ignorant? – he was extremely stressed at the thought of two weeks without pay. How would most of us manage? Making all public servants the ‘whipping boys’ for all thats gone wrong in Ireland is just not fair.

        My point there are Irish people living outside of ireland that want to move back and feel they can’t because of the economic recession. Is Ireland really that bad?

        • sirganya

          I think it may be that bad. I’m sitting in JFK airport waiting to board on a smartphone with 4G data connection for $70 a month all in and I’m remebering that when I got to NY in 2002 people here didn’t know what texting was. Oh ye’ll all be doin it soon I’d roar from my bar stool in the local irish boozer, sure all of Ireland is doin it. We were way ahead in terms of cost and penetration but what happened. Eircom, owned by the taxpayer was sold to the taxpayer then the highly profitable arm was sold off and the directors made a packet. Again it was the plight of a friend who had sunk his inheritance against my advice that enraged me, one reason I had to leave… Doors are closing prepare for takeoff, smartphones have to be switched off.. Later skaters

          • jandal

            My first job out of school was with a county council. My first task was to be on registration at an upcoming conference. These two men walked in, signed the register and turned around and walked out. When I asked my more experienced colleague why they would do that she said “they just come to sign their name so that they can claim expenses”. The incident, the smashing of my innocence that people in these positions were honourable, and my ensuing disgust has shinged my memory. I despise FF for what they have done to Ireland and if that dipsh*t Bertie becomes President that will just become the icing on the cake. Ireland has so much and you appreciate its uniqness, especially in its people, when you are outside looking in.
            I hope you get back some day sirganya and that it works out.

        • Deco

          { Hearing people talk about Ireland like a ‘loser’ country angers and saddens me, }
          But let’s be honest about – the dominant intellectual constructs in Ireland, and ‘loser’ thinking constructs.
          And they have produced the Boom, the crash, the ANIB bailout, the INBS-EBS bailout, the Permo loan, bank regulation by dummies, the K Club model of corporate deal making, the 800 quangos and counting, the Bertie Bowl, the Iarnroid Eireann timetable, Rip Off Republic, the “drinks cabinet” model of government and NAMA. Oh yeah, and don’t forget the continual refrain from our betters to “celebrate” with “pride”.

          We make a big thing about are supposed to be big into software in this country. But everything is programmed for disaster.

          And we need to be honest about this nonsense about stupidity masquarading as intelligence.

          • gadfly55

            Who dares speak the truth at any level of power in this society? Furthermore, the mindset of those who are promoted to the highest positions, whether by election or appointment, expresses the consensus of their client group. There is no way out of this quagmire other than perdition, or purgation, and the new order will be generated from the same social conditioning and genetic disposition. The genie is out of the bottle everywhere and the chaos of Pandora will lay waste to the best laid plans of the wisest councils.

        • wills

          Jandel -

          Ireland is drenched in cronyism. So too is USA, europe and uk.

          In Ireland it is more tightly nit and concealed due too the irish knack for ‘gombeenism’ and the tribal nature of the structure of our society in Ireland.

          That said, one can carve a pathway out of this cringe worthy retarded way of living and get down and dirty and take this sh1t on eye too eye.

          So, are you up for it.

        • G

          @ jandal – its worst, you have all the information you need. I am reluctant to advise, however…………..

          Do not romanticise Ireland, it is truly dead and gone, if your life is good, and it sounds fine, then stick with it, you can always visit, now is not the time to relocate, I think you would do so at your peril.

          I will leave for the first available opportunity, no future here in an essentially ‘failed state’ – not mature enough to manage its finances, regulate con artists in business and the banks, no political leadership, inadequate public services and selling off its natural resources for a song, this is no Norway. Sharks on every corner, greedy landlords, deceivers smiling at you, looking for the shilling.

          Do not subject your wife/partner/kids to such a backward, shoddy environment!

          My first job was also in the county council, while in the toilet a guy came in and said ‘you are new, so I will give you one piece of advice, people around here would slit your throat faster than look at you’, that was lesson #1 in this fair isle of saints and scholars.

          Stay gone, enjoy the sunshine and count your blessings.

      • G

        I believe Joseph Stiglitz in his useful ‘Globalization and its Discontents’ referred to those individuals (estate agents) as ‘market fundamentalists’, believe the term sums it up perfectly.

        I have heard of the line attributed to Freud with regard to the Irish, but never saw proof that he ever said it.

        Some interesting comments nonetheless.

        • sirganya

          to be fair he said it was of no use to the irish. I’d like to clarify a few comments.

          although many distasteful things have happened in the irish financial world they happened everywere, bernie madoff etc. When there’s a lot of money at stake it attracts ruthless people. We’re not all like that.

          I have many great and unique friends who exhibit all the great qualities we’re famous for.

          I got side tracked by my own anecdotes. This website is full of good people. How do we move the levers of power towards this section of irish society. It always seemed to me that the underlying subtext of this site is a desire for an organised response. I refuse to give up on Ireland. It’s still great craic, can’t find that anywhere else. I’m willing to put my shoulder to the wheel and it’s not like we’re short of intellect here. Time to speak up?

  7. wills


    It’s a relief too see somebody in the meeja tackling head on the ‘inverted robin hoodism budget reality for what it actually is.

    You call it spot on using the term ‘panglossian’. I’d go further and call it ‘dr.strangelove magical thinking’.

    We / Irish society, what’s left of it post paedo cleric’s, porno property profiteering, bankster state takeover of tax revenues and power transfer too NWO masters at ECB, apart from all that, we are witnessing a meltdown in D4 / official ireland community contact in ‘reality’.

    To say the ‘budget’ is going to get the economy back on track next year is pure fantasy.

    To utter such dross part of a PR stunt too conjure up international confidence in our economy exemplifies a splitting off of a subsystem of power from the trunk of the tree.

    And the ruling powers are not even registering how far up the ‘cul de sac’ the self conceited policies are taking Ireland.

    Layers of self deluded lie’s piled on top of self deluded lie’s.

    No mention of the simple straight forward fact that the hole in the government books is in large measure from the cost of the bailout tab for all the banks in the past present and future.

    No mention nor sign of this reality in where the clawback of state expenditure was targeted. None.

    The budget is a beast of burden because of the banks banking business model. To overlook this in seeking out clawbacks is treasonous.

    We are facing a country under some type of financial dictatorship control. This is a criminal group robbing the tax revenues from the taxpayer.

    This must be called out for what it is.

    No implied consent.

    The country is been robbed by the banks.

    I implore you DAvid too blow the whistle and call this out for what it is.

    Banking tyranny control ruling Ireland.

  8. Alan42

    I run a business and I don’t think its that different to running a country ( I have no ambition to run a country )
    Anyway in business I must take in more than I spend . I must have good cashflow , get paid on time and I must have orders with a good margin .
    If I have a cashflow problem but I have orders well I have to tackle the cashflow problem . Cut costs , tighter credit , hound my clients for payment etc .
    If I have no cashflow and no orders then I am one step away from going out of business and I had better do something quick smart .
    If I have good cashflow but orders are down I have to get the sales suit on . etc etc .

    Anyway Ireland has a cashflow problem , ie banks , falling tax revenue , high costs ( wages , the President , Mary Coughlan etc ) But Ireland also has another problem as it has no orders (the unemployed ) .

    However Ireland is only trying to fix the cash flow problem . Its trying to balance the books in such a way that we can continue to do business with massive credit from the ECB .
    The main problem with its cash flow is the banks but they are ignoring that by putting it off balance sheet .

    So to conclude ( as I am now confusing myself ) the best that Ireland can hope for is that it can balance the books while depending on handouts from the ECB while hoping that something magical will happen with the banks and Anglo will just go away somehow .

    But what about the orders ? They are doing nothing in that area .
    Ireland is in very real danger of just limping along for the next 20 years with high unemployment and emigration . I can’t understand it . Nothing , zero , zilch . Car scrappage ? Em , we don’t make cars and who in their right minds buys a new car when you can one that six months old a lot cheaper than the 1500 discount that they are offering ?

    • wills

      ALan42 -

      ‘ireland has a cashflow problem’, Wrong.

      The ‘serfdom’ under debt peeonage have a cash flow problem.

      This would be the section who do not own their house, outright and bought into POnzi property bubble post 2000 and are not casino gambling for a living,. and if you do the stats we get..

      55 % own their own home outright.

      Approx of the 45 % who do not i reckon say half are casino gambling for a living so that leaves 23 % who are ‘hard for cash’.

      So, Ireland is NOT hard for cash, this is a piece of confidence trickster propoganda (not saying you are alan).

      The economy itself is in a slowdown.

      The slowdown is due too a crash on banking credit provision.

      The sum’s of cash on deposit in ireland are gigantic.

      Who know s the total in tax havens etc.

      The economy is by regular standards infrastructurally wise OK.

      • wills

        Also, the country is choc a bloc with info technology and gadgetry and inexpensive air travel and plentiful food supply with an ok social welfare net.

        The cashflow problem itself is an illusion.

        Howso wills?

        The cash flow slow down and emptying out from the real economy is NOT a direct consequence of the consumer holding cash and not spending as much and the banks holding credit and not providing lending as much, so, shrinkage in cash flow amounts and business turn over follows suit.

        IT IS A CONSEQUENCE OF THE distribution percentages of the share of the cash amongst the population.

        Too much cash is been held by too few people.

        There are piles and piles and piles and piles of cash sitting waiting off to the side which should be made available by the gov too balance the books over purloining the 45 % in cash flow difficulty.

        • Alan42

          Wills , so i work hard , provide employment , pay taxes , kickbacks to those in power and now you think I and people like me are going to give our money to FF ?
          I paid my fair share of tax . If I am made to pay more does that mean I get to drive on better roads than the rest of the Irish people ? My binman wears a gold suit or something ?
          Should I give it to FF to squander on a metro link to the airport or something ?
          Anybody who is smart has their money outside of Ireland .

          • wills


            Let me extrapolate above comments further. You are getting into the nitty gritty of it.

            The system is a dlce loaded in someone’s favour.

            The system can work efficiently and fairly for every one but it isn’t.

            So, we end up with debt peeonage class providing real labour too the owners of the system.

            Thus, the wealth flows in one direction.

            This is my point above.

            Of course there are those who benefit from the ‘wealth transfer’ in one direction and that’s life.

            But, it does not remove the fact the free market system has been rigged in the favour of a special interests over non – special interests.

            There are those who may not consider themselves special interests but do benefit from been at the right end of the money / credit flow at any given moment in space and time, ( which i have been too, a number of times) but, the central fact is, the economy is rigged.

          • wills

            economy ebb and flow has been damned up and irrigated.

        • wills

          A command and control system allocates all wealth, hidden behind the facade of a supposed dynamic democratic market system of substantial freedoms.

          • wills

            …which in of itself does operate dispersing wealth to whomever, but, behind which lies a command and control sub structure.

            Like the movie “the sting”. It’s all moving walls and con’s and fake realities directing events to sucker suckers.

    • StephenKenny

      I don’t think it’s cashflow Alan, it’s more like a situation where sales have fallen 30%, and there is no possibility of them recovering in the foreseeable future.
      There’s also the little problem of the huge loan that was taken out when sales first started to fall – just to tide things over until things ‘got back to normal’.

      What would you do?

      • G

        Stiglitz points out that countries should run a current reserve account for the rainy day, where was Ireland’s? Why was the kitty empty? Householders save, businesses try to put money aside when possible? It’s astounding mismanagement….

        • wills

          G -

          The kitty or public purse was emptied out by the mercenary economic rent class and hangers on buying in too the Ponzi property bubble speculative money making scam.

          The taxpayers funded public purse was looted.

          Take for example the 78 ,000 xtra hirings into the public service and then most of which snatched property holdings on the back of there positions, civil servant on cv gets you a property, fast.

    • coldblow

      I’m sure everyone agrees we have to balance the books, and get rid of inefficiencies, but I think the argument is about whether right now is the best time to do so (the former, that is). I suppose my POV is that it’s all more complicated than some would have you believe, not less.

      Just a couple of things straight off the top of my head:

      1 your ex. re competitors above – should the whole idea of limited liability be revised?
      2 social responsibilities of companies and their shareholders
      3 what about the fellow who gets laid off and has savings? He is presumably refused ‘jobseekers allowance’ while his shiftless mate saved nothing.

      I’m not arguing with anyone here, just trying to think things through.

    • Bamboo

      I think the reason why high earners are not sufficiently targeted is simply because they he high borrowings. If you’re on that much money let’s say 100k or more a year, surely what can you do with that money? You invest (in property) and borrow even more. Low income families have relatively low borrowings (well it is high in relation to their incomes) or no borrowings at all. So taking away the income drastically from a high earner family is basically multiplying the problem.

      Let’s say a family on 50k a year has a mortgage of 1000 a month and so in other words no excess income. (apart from maybe one or more holidays or an OK car) A family with twice that income 100k or more a month would most likely have no clue what to do with that excess income (apart from spending that money on foreign holidays/property and fancy foreign cars ). So they invest in something and borrow more according to their excess income. It is this excess income that is so seductive to borrow big time. In other words twice the income doesn’t mean twice the excess money. Instead it is a multiple of that. So I think it is this debt that the banks and government are worried about. Not the debts of the small earners. It is pittance and so who cares about that.

  9. Alan42

    You don’t have to have a degree in economics to know that the banks have massive personal debt on their books which is going to screw them .
    What kind of bank lends to business in a recession / depression ?
    Not only are Irish people credit junkies but a lot of irish businesses are as well .
    I always ran my business with little credit in that as far as possable I owned my plant and machinery and was not working to repay the banks but in the last 15 years banks were throwing credit at business .
    When I bought my first machine I got it second hand and filled it 24 /7 and then bought another one and so on .
    But Mr credit junkie businessman can get 7 machines on easy credit and arrive where I am in the market in a couple of months . So we are competing . But thing is he is driving down the price and if he fails he just walks away and everything is taken back by the banks .
    This kind of business is history as it will be a long time before banks give credit to credit junkie businessman again . My business in Ireland ( although I am not involved in running it these days , my brothers are ) is thriving . My brothers tell me that they have no problem with the banks as we have assets that are worth something and the banks will get their money back .
    As we return to a normal credit world where it is actually difficult to get a bank loan we are going to have high unemployment until this reality is faced up to .

  10. Tim

    Alan42, I agree with you on this; I run a business, too. I have two people who “operate for me” as “sub-contractors”; (that’s a funny-lttle-Irish way of avoiding the 12.5% employers’ PRSi – which should be scrapped, as it is a dis-incentive to employment).

    If I treated them the way that the public-sector workers have been treated by their employer, they would never work for me again. (and they would be right!).

    Why should anyone continue to work for “an employer” who screws them?

    I make sure that the sub-contractors who make money for me are happy. That is in my interest. If I were of the view that “profit-alone-is-king”, I would screw them for more work for less pay. That would annoy them and I would eventually lose them.

    QED, I think.

    • paddythepig


      As a matter of interest.

      If revenue in your business was to collapse say 30%, and had little or no chance of recovering, and your wage costs for yourself and your 2 associates was based on your prior revenue figure, what would you do?


      • wills

        Paddy -

        This budget is rather straight forward.

        The cut backs are to raise the funds that were used to pay off banking gambling debts.

        So, anyone in their right state of mind who works either in private or public sector if they see the cut backs in the right context and not as instructed too see them by vested interests, who benefited from the public purse, will see reductions in their monies as tantamount too banking – gov thievery.

      • paddythepig


        Still awaiting your answer?

        Am also interested what you would do if your customers came to you and told you they could get the same service you provide, for 1/5th of the price in China or India? And that they would move their business unless you matched their costs.


      • Deco


        I also have a question in relation to the 30% drop in revenue.
        Did Tim pay wasters like Johhny Cash to swan around racecourses in helicopters, or use limosines to get from one part of an airport to another ? Did you employ Johnny Cash to rush 400 Million Euro at a second sports stadium in order to provide for Bertie’s mates ? Did Tim employ people who would build tunnels the wrong height, luas lines with 10000 faults and counting, swimming pools with hundreds of leaks, or IT systems that never got completed ? Did Tim tell us that Anglo Irish Bank would not get any tax payers money, before it got 4 billion ? Did Tim miss the minor details in a report telling us about ‘Permo-gate’ ? Did Tim tell us that the Irish banks were in a solvent situation like Patrick SNeary ?

        The 30% drop in revenue came as a result of wholescale incompetence. There is a direct comparison. Except Johnny Cash and all the clowns will get their pensions. There is something inherently wrong with rewarding incompetence and punishing those who do the right thing. Yet this is exactly what we have in this country.

        Given the choice between providing for people and providing for failed institutions in both the public and private sector, we should be choosing to allocate and provide for people. And we should be choosing to allow failed public and private institutions/organizations to live with the consequences of their incompetence.

        We are dithering concerning this choice. Why have bank staff not been asked to take a pay cut ? Many of them took bonuses for throwing all sorts of stupid advice ? I wonder is Dan McLaughlin still producing those rubbish recommendations ? Or Austin Hughes ? Since the banks got bailed out by the taxpayers they have got strangely silent. Like as if they would prefer if we should forget.

        Yes, sure let’s have capitalism. That means the consequences of stupidity, failure, hubris, and meglamaniac are to be taken by those that create the mess. No more of the upper class neo-Marxist nonsense of taxpayer bailouts for reckless rich people.
        Capitalist consequences for capitalist failure – not socialism for the rich like what we see in the ANIB debacle and with NAMA.

      • Tim

        paddythepig, in some areas that is exactly what has happened, and we all accept the drop equally; That one word, “equally”, is the key.

        If you were expecting me to say that I would simply pass-on the 30% cut to the two lads, in order to protect my own selfish interests, the I am sorry to disappoint you.

        • paddythepig

          Tim, I had no expectations whatsoever about your answer, so am not disappointed at all.

          At least you admit you would all take a salary cut. Should governance of the country be run differently to the governance of your business?


          • Tim

            paddythepig, if governance of the country had been run like the governance of my business, it would have been run prudently, frugally and fairly; it would not have run over a cliff. It would not have had the “top” people playing the peacock and swanning around, flashing the cash, while the employees suffer although delivering their productivity through their agreed work every day.

  11. David summed it all up tonight on the panel when he quipped ” The next train to Dublin is a Bus”,
    Fianna Fail have lined the pockets of their mates.
    The “Opposition” are positioning themselves for a new coalition.
    The Bishops won’t resign.
    All out strikes by February.
    And We’re going counting Frogs
    Diddley Diddley times are here again.
    Christ, Ireland is up a dogs arse.

    • ian

      Overheard this last week.

      “Misery riding on Poverty’s back”

      Just seems very apt after the budget.

    • Deco

      When I heard that story I was reminded of several Iarnroid Eireann experiences. Like people packed into the mail carriage on the Maynooth to Connolly line. Like announcements that could not be heard on certain carriages because the intercom was faulty. Like one occassion when the train just stopped and waited 45 minutes. And then we were told that the engine was banjaxed. Like when I heard DART announcements one December ‘the 08:15 to Bray is cancelled because of an unscheduled lack of a driver’ (the driver had a hangover). And I heard the same annoucement every second morning.

  12. adamabyss


  13. Tim

    wills, agreed, all!

    Just answer me this: why ddi the entire Labour Party (when they could have brought-down the currrent govetnment,) abstain from the vote on Carbon taxes?

    • wills

      Ok tim, because the labour party are part of the con that is the ‘left – right’ paradigm sold too the masses as political theatre, to preserve the black op’s mind trick over the populace, the ‘illusion’ that choice is on offer when, as we all know now to our misery, it is a crock of poo poo. We have no real choice.

    • Deco

      Maybe it was because they thought that the television coverage was about to end ?

      Maybe they don’t want to be in government ?

  14. The population will feel further betrayed as an understanding of the emptiness and deception at the heart of Government promises of recovery slowly dawns on them. Expect massive societal change in the next few years as people and corporations come to terms with limits. Limits to self-realisation and personal freedom. Limits to individual and corporate resource use and control of assets. Limits to debt burden.
    It seems to me that the Lenighan government has finally painted itself into a corner and been forced to apply the logic of the ECB. Hence the trimming of the socio-economic ‘overhead’ that is the public service. To imagine the administration was given much choice is an illusion. Unfortunately following this logic does nothing more than stave off bankrupcy. In these post-FDI times a sustainable recovery will depend on the flowering of strong internationally-trading product and service enterprises. Investors need to accept that there are few sustainable quick bucks to be made in the new order that is beginning to emerge. The Irish need to refocus their energies on producing sausage rather than sizzle.
    Leave our administration and the circus of self-interested satellite orgs to their preoccupations, delusions and deceptions. Try and minimise its intrusion into your life. Focus instead on getting good – building businesses and careers that are ethical and internationally competitive.

  15. Tuaithe De Danann -
    A new order is now been recalled from the past to sit itself in the present and to denounce our peeonage of serfdom and the pillaging of our national wealth and dignity. This new Army of righteous restorers are surfacing from deep under the earth tunnels to once more save our past to bring us to the present and leads us to the future.The instigators of this national movement are our Lepracauns who are low on members due to recent emigration with their masters .Secret gatherings are now emerging and more will become frequent as they begin to discuss the parliament of a new sustainable democracy again and remove all the politico blockage and the banksta /gangsta rape endured by the small people like you and I.
    The national march carries with it the new chanting ‘ Tua Tuagh Tuaaaaaaaa ‘ . It’s sounds resonates along the pilgrimage path of re awaking like a high octave with a chorus and a background of the national elements joining in.The Drums hide our fear and raise our hopes and numb our pain as the movement begins.
    So let the music play .

  16. mcsean2163

    Time to raise coorporation tax, simple as…

  17. StephenKenny

    I’ve just been listening to some updates on the recent success of the financial services sector in the US political arenas.
    You can imagine the arguments that took place on Easter Island when someone suggested that building stone heads was not a sound basis for an island economy.

  18. Philip

    I have been looking at the interchange between Wills and Alan42. The two are 100% correct.

    Alan42 family runs a business ethically. Credit is obtained on the basis of assets available. The business decides what it can afford rather than what it can get from the bank. There is clear concern that debts need to be paid off and that assets perform well.

    Wills proposition is that we have different rules for different people in relation to credit and debt servicing. While the Alan42s of this world will perform, there is a group of Alan42 competitors who have failed and are being let off the hook. These are the ones with PULL wink wink. I witness this all the time with developers who seem to walk away from debts with impunity and where a legal class are making money off creditors trying to get paid. It is rigged – no doubt about it….We have guys millions in debt still driving around in their4 be 4s while we evict those a few months behind on their rent or repayments. Alan42 better be careful…if they are not part of the club, their contracts may dry up. These IN clubs are all too good at muscling you out as the market contracts.

    • tony_murphy

      Thanks Philip for letting us know of your experience

      Politicians and their supporters are all part of a mafia. Survival of the fittest.

      Quango land – jobs for the boys & girls who support. Protect those who support

    • liam

      “economy ebb and flow has been damned up and irrigated.”

      That’s a particularly nice analogy. Ireland does have something that more closely represents a consensus socialist command economy inside the castle walls, and almost complete anarchy moderated by debt obligations outside of those walls.

      How about this for a thought experiment: somewhere like Cork decides that its going to declare independence. They build their own castle. All they need is their own tax office, and they’re good to go.

      • coldblow


        On the Irish economy blog yesterday (I think) Brian Lucey referred to the sound of the portcullis going down separating the insiders and outsiders. Same analogy used by DMcW – it seems the “Economic Enquirers” (see Pope’s Children) agreed on certain principles when they were having their annual booze up!

        Also, speaking of the same website, and seeing as Blue Angel (posting above) was the first blogger here I remember referring to the Irish ‘economic rent infrastructure’, there was a call from one contributor (a Paul Hunt who has apparently looked into market distortions in the electricity and gas market) for economists to conduct a detailed analysis of other areas in this e.r.i.

        • Deco

          I would like to see Brian Lucey’s comments. Prof Lucey stood up to the NAMA scam and was there to be counted.

          An examination of the difference in the barriers to entry into electricity generation would also be worthwhile, comparing Denmark and Ireland. I suspect that the playing field is not as level here as in Denmark. It it was a open market, then maybe more money might have been invested in wind turbines, and less in monotonous empty retail complexes.

  19. MK1

    Hi David,

    Yes, agree that its hard to believe the forecasters, but hey, isnt economics at the best of times guessing the future as there are just too many variables? eg: how many people will up sticks and emigrate, thus saving on social welfare costs, etc. Its a guess.

    Last year we were guessing how much the government overspend would be in 2009. Its ending up at about 22 billion, with 55 billion in spending at 33 billion in revenue. My guess back in Oct 2008 was 16-18 billion. But I am in the same boat as everyone else, I cant predict the future.

    When Lenihan talks about the ‘worst is over’ I think in his mind he is referring to the stall in financial markets and the vista that Irish ‘blue-chip’ banks could be bust or at best zombies back in Sep 2008. That low point indeed is over as we have the banks on life support and things on the surface are working, the banks are making operational profits, etc, and if we keep them on life support long enough past 2015 they may be turned around. But it will come at a cost to us the taxpayer, for sure.

    Also, in terms of GDP contraction, -7.5 this year and -1.3 next year, or whatever it will be. So on that metric at least the rate of descent is better! So the worst is indeed over depending on how you are counting.

    In terms of people on average things are clearly worse though and will be worse next year, even the -1.3 figure implies that.

    You mention that credit is needed, but this is not so – we have had too much credit and this credit correction is needed. I agree that too much credit correction can be bad and could kill otherwise good businesses off, but it will cull many businesses that were air-businesses, only supported by credit in the first place. These need to be culled.

    The analogy of a heroin (= credit) junkie going through cold turkey is a good one. It is painful. Using methadone (more credit), the abuser can be weaned off it.

    Some of the figures make interesting reading. GDP in 2009 is 164 billion, although we really should be using GNP as it is more reflectice of what is happening in Ireland.

    GDP in 2009 is 164 billion euro.
    Gov spend is 55billion which is 33% of GDP
    Gov income is 33 billion which is 20% of GDP
    The gap was -22 billion which is 13% of GDP
    At year end the national debt will be 64% of GDP

    So, in terms of stimulus, we are borrowing 22billion to keep the government spending at 55 billion. Government projections show that this spending level will be maintained, with adjustments to what it is spent on as more goes on interest payments and less on capital formation. Debt will increase from 64% and is projected to taper off at 84% in 2012. Well, lets see. Greece’s debt is over 100% now so I would not be surprised if we approach that. I would hope not.

    So, we are far from balancing the books. People talk that this was a draconian budget, but its a bit like the sugar addict getting his ration of 10 bars of biscuits per day reduced to 8 bars. Yes, there are inequalities and unfairness. Many of those with te wealth are nor being chased as they should and the mass of the less well off are sharing a large burden.

    Unions state that as a country we do not spend much on government, and that is on one hand true, as its only 55 billion (33% of GDP). However, we take in a lot less tax, only 33 billion (20% of GDP), and you cant have one without thye other.

    Many of the comparable countries have much higher corporation taxes, but for us on the peripherary of Europe and with a small local market, we cant tax the MNC’s. So increasing corp tax from 12.5% to 13 or higher would have just sent the wrong signals.

    Income tax was not touched, which I find strange, as surely some tinkering with it could have at least brought in more taxes without too much pain.

    Next years stimulus (= borrowing) is projected at around 18 billion.

    We will still be living beyond are means. And the light at the end of the tunnel in 2014, is a deficit around -3%, still living beyond our means although at a much more manageable and a less “junkie” or basket case level.

    Enjoy Xmas ….



    After Capello, Trappatoni is the second highest remunerated international football coach on the planet.Shows how far Irish wages /costs are out of line with the real world.

  21. Deco

    Lenihan’s budget is a confidence trick. In fact everything that Brian Lenihan has tried since he became Minister for Finance has been a confidence trick. This is a man who has total faith in his officials. And the officials are all amateurs.

    The overriding aim of the budget was to get young people in the private sector go form a herd of lemmings again and get stuck into the property market. In fact everything from this government is about the property market. They still think that they can rebuild the euphoria. They are looking for something for nothing. The government, the union bosses, and the regime (the K-Club Clique) all want to have a recovery with no reform.

    But this is not uniquely an FF problem. It affects most authority forms in Ireland. There is a belief that PR stunts are more successful than really addressing the core issues. And this comes from this belief that in a small country like this, the media can always be relied upon to take advice from ‘our advertising sponsors’ (including the state and big banks).

    Basically there is a belief in Ireland that authority gives you imunity from ever having to be accountable in any way. Just engage in a PR campaign and the sheeple will come around to it. It is arrogance. And we need to to undermine this.

    We don’t actually need a strike to paralyze the country any further. No we actually need to build the intellectual basis for reform in the public arena as much as possible.

    The Irish Concept of Management has failed. And we need to say this repeatedly until it gets replaced with something much better !!!!

    • wills

      Exactly Deco, the budget is a beast of burden notification to the serfdom on who really is in charge.

      It’s a device / vehicle too once a year for ‘unofficial oligopoly control’ ruling over Ireland, make it’s announcement on who call s the shots, who rules.

      The money class rule all supreme.

      The paymasters make policy.

      And policy made yesterday bears no relation too anything except an ape pounding its chest asserting its dominance over the socio economic system they hijacked a long time ago.

    • gadfly55

      The government has no mandate to govern and a general election is required in June, otherwise the public service will effectively grind the country to a halt. Only mass political action on the streets in which the government loses authority over its own public service will create the political necessity to end this government as soon as possible.

  22. MK1

    Hi Deco,

    I dont know if what Lenihan has done is a confidence trick per se, as there would be only a minority of people that would at this stage support him fully in all his and the government’s actions.

    Deco > there is a belief in Ireland that authority gives you imunity from ever having to be accountable in any way. we actually need to build the intellectual basis for reform in the public arena

    I agree that authority by and large is authoritarian in nature to dictatorial levels. I’m not sure of the social reasoning for this, but perhaps studies have been done that show its a remnant from being a colony, sub-servants to a landlord system, plus more recently the strict religious-led schools.

    I have often been on company managenent teams where consensus was reached by the CEO vote of 1 over-riding all other inputs and voices. You are aware of the concept of ‘building your own kingdom’.

    On the corollary, I have watched with relish when a ‘hitler-type’ manager had his kingdom shatterred from above and was shafted. The shafters get shafted. Shafting is a common phrase in Irish business and organisational structures. And thats what FF have done to Ireland, they have shafted us. They care less about the consequences.

    Yes, we need to shift the debate to public sector reform and there was very little reform mentioned in the budget. But you speak of intelligence – I’m afraid there is a severe lack of that.

    I am not confident ….


    • wills

      Mk1 -

      I think i know what the ‘social reasoning’ is ; greed

    • Deco

      How can we shaft them ?

      Like you, I am not confident. I expected a systemic collapse and that this would wake people up. Instead we got a series of PR stunts and makeshift solutions all built on the assumption that “the fundamentals are sound”. The dust then got swept under a different spot in the carpet. And there were a series of ‘confidence building measures’.

      The biggest succes of the people who caused the mess was that the population did not upgrade the collective analysis. Instead we had repeated dumbing down like in the days of Ditherer.

      Which is why we must continue analyzing what happens. And we must make sure that the money flows to those who compete fairly, who are open and transparent, and who tell the truth. I hope that more people educate themselves to who really controls Ireland.

      • paulmcd

        I believe that one way to “shaft” them is to bring about the necessary changes in union leadership so that we will have trade-union general secretaries who will accept the principle of significant pay cuts for those earning 6-figure incomes – including the general secretaries themselves – and will resolutely push PAY CAPS for the top civil servants and especially the politicians; and Peter McLoone if you are reading this that means a 50,000 euro cut for you.

        The Gogarty incident reported on Friday’s RTE news was trivial compared with the FALSE INFORMATION delivered to viewers concerning the Taoiseach’s salary as compared with his counterparts in 6 European nations. For those of you who wish to know more please click the following hyperlink:

        The pre-budget figure for Brian Cowen on which Lenihan based his “20% cut” in the web page should have been €285,583 (285 583 Euros = 417 436.671 U.S. dollars) meaning that every Irish citizen is contributing the equivalent of 10 US cents towards Cowen’s salary. This is a 10 times multiple of the one cent contribution US citizens make towards Obama, and 2 times the contribution UK citizens make towards Gordon Brown.

        Please reflect on this quote relating to the situation in Singapore. (It ties up with my view that in Ireland the performance of those in banking, politics and public administration is inversely proportional to the sums they are paid):

        “Is there a high correlation between well paid jobs and low corruption?
        I tend to think corruption (in many forms) only get bigger and more complex with those who are paid most, and it is directly linked with the moral integrity rather than with the pay package.” FROM DISCUSSION ON SINGAPORE

        • paulmcd

          Footnote to above: The Taoiseach’s salary is to be reduced by 57,117 euros giving a new salary of 228,466 euros. Based on current exchange rates this will be 11,000 euros more than Gordon Brown’s Salary.

          Also, the salary for the Prime Minister of Europe’s richest nation, Norway, is 110,000 euros. The Taoiseach is to be paid in excess of 100% more than the PM of Norway.

  23. Philip

    The BIG problem I see with this budget is the level uncertainty it has created. If Lenihan had say halved social welfare, fired 50% of the PS, hiked taxes by 30% and then said….OK…That’s it. Investors may have had some basis of putting a peg in the ground and calculating a return. The problem is that the current Budget does not allow anyone with money to calculate that return. Lenihan is still stuck in notional estimation land like the notional values of property in NAMA and so on.

    We know there will be more cuts next year .We do not know where. We should be showing a lower wage bill courtesy of the PS cut. But with the ar$e falling out of turnover, there’ll be less business. Not only will we be low wage, but low capability – not really a Poland then.

    Fundamentally pi$$ing me off is IBEC yammering on about a minimum wage. We really are a nation of shopkeepers and hoteliers when this crap gets any coverage. Do they seriously believe that a engineering or science grad will hang around this place if they are being devalued like this? This playing in minimums sends a message to all gombeens wanting to play the same game – cut cut cut to hell. Shure we are the only game in town.

    I do hope the gardai and the PS are reading this and learn to articulate their case positively and with correct emphasis. Lenihan have created a framework with a confused narrative that will set groups against one another for the wrong reasons. IBEC do not represent the true private sector and neither do Siptu etc represent the true PS.

    • wills

      Philip -

      ‘lenihan stuck in notional estimation land..’ is proof positive the public have been handed down a budget from un high above designed too preserve the vested interests ‘order’ going forward.

    • Deco

      Something hilarious about the IBEC analysis of the problem.

      The Irish concept of management has failed, and IBEC want to fix the minimum wage problem.

      The minimum wage will end up being reduced – because of rampant inflation in the UK, and because the internal markets will demand it before they will loan us any more money.

      But I don’t see IBEC (heavily subsidised by the banks and the semi-states) telling it’s own members to get rid of it’s failed management outfits !!!

      I don’t take IBEC seriously. An important step on the road to recovery will be kicking IBEC out of the government process of this country. They are a collection of heavily overpaid wasters.

      Hey IBEC, how about a national MAXIMUM wage?

  24. Original-Ed

    The storm clouds haven’t gone away – David’s solution through exiting the Euro may very well come true – the vultures are circling – today’s indo –

    • wills

      Original ed -

      Interesting link. One thing strikes me though. If the ‘powers at be’ running Ireland wanted too keep with the euro, all it would take, is an opening up of gov reach into the super rich class monies and flow of a % of their huge wealth into state coffers.

  25. wills

    Posters -

    Lets not forget these figures when dissecting the ‘budget’.

    Anglo Irish Bank taken from taxpayers 4.0 billion euro’s

    A.I.B / B o I taken from taxpayers 7.0 billion euro’s

    E.B.S taken from taxpayers .4 billion euro’s

    Nationwide taken from taxpayers 2.0 billion euro’s

    Anglo Irish Bank taken from taxpayers 6 billion euro’s

    A.I.B / B o I taken form the taxpayer 7.2 billion euro’s

    NAMA taken from taxpayers overdraft facility at ECB 55 billion euro’s.

    Now, what was BL saying the budget’s cut’s had to be done for ???????

  26. Hidden Treasures

    ( quoted from gazzette national de tuath 11th decembre, 2009 )

    Jews worldwide are nervous that ‘the invisible people ‘ of tuath de danann are marching to the Hill of Tara soon to retrieve the lost treasures of the Lost Arc buried deep under and undetected since Queen Tea of Babylon arrived with the Arc to save it from the forces ransacking her city then.A secret tuath parliament has been in session for the last few days assessing the outcome of the government ‘budget de guerre” and are satisfied this document has failed in their expectations and are now arranging to sell to the highest bidder in The Forbidden City the lost treasures to defray the Irish national debt.Many tuath people are sad that this decision was made by the Ri Ard .Jews are sending a letter of complaint to the T-shock demanding that they cannot be sold without they owning it first and insisting that it was stolen first before it was buried under the Hill of Tara .
    The Ard Ri is expected to morph back to humanoid some day soon after having been living in the lost Atlantis since it disappeared many thousand years ago and to transpose himself and the Arc in an instant to China where money is very plentiful. The Ard Ri is ignoring the T-shock’s pronouncement of his infallibility and expects to cast his spell of extinction on the FF party to rid it of the lands forever,
    Strange happenings have been noticed on Dun Aengus today where they expect to make the launch of the Ard Ri to China in an instant .This technology is of another world and way ahead of the Earthly forces of the world.
    Arabs in Dubai are trying to assess recent arrivals there to determine if any Lepracauns came so they can a meeting with the Ard Ri before the Chinese do.The Ruler of Abu Dhabi and Saudi are proposing to make a joint bid for the Treasures.

    From : Alygth of Tir Tairngire

  27. Tim

    Oh, Dear! 5 attempts to log-in here, again. Anyway folks, as an educator, I feel a certain vicarious or collective responsibility for the ignorance of Mr Gogarty TD as to acceptable decorum and acceptable parliamentary language.

    In reparation, I offer this instructive link:

    • Deco

      Ah yes, Gogarty – I seen that on TV3 News – where it was story number 1. But RTE News is accountable to the government Minister – that being Whine. I wonder will it be story number 1 on the evening news.

      Deputy Stagg is a mild mannered man. I am sure he had very pertinent points to make.

      Gogarty dropped the pretenscious superficial side and revealed his true nature. Trying to keep up the PR stunt.

      It appears that Emmett Stagg was taking a line of argument that was assumming that Gogarty was a pretenscious hypocrite. But Deputy Stagg is a very mild mannered man.

      And then Gogarty lost control of his act – the veneer. Well, now lots of voters will have see what he is really made of. I think that we can expect a whole lot of grovelling in the next few weeks as Gogarty tries to rebuild the veneer.

      • Deco

        It made the number 1 story on RTE News. Well, I suppose they had no choice.

        Any chance that Gogarty might resign and we could get an additional by-election ?

        • adamabyss

          I went to school with him in Lucan and am distantly related. He was half a lunatic back then too. Came back to repeat his Leaving at around 19 or 20 after floating about for a couple of years doing nothing and was notorious for being weird and eccentric. Good luck to him.

    • adamabyss

      After the first time you log in Tim, presh Refresh or Reload. That should sort it for you, in my experience.

      • Tim

        Adam, thanks….. we must meet, before you fly away…..

      • Tim

        Ok….. I am going to “Bite-the-bullet” here and say that the “Gogerty-thing” was something more than it appeared to be: bear-in-mind that Emmet Stagg was caught in The Park a number of years ago with a 15 yr old Rent-boy (and never prosecuted).

        Was Gogerty right, to say what he said?

        Yes. (I think).

        Why did he say what he said?

        Now, that’s a different matter.

        • adamabyss

          Just seen Gogarty’s performance for the first time. I reckon he’s trying to do a Bertie by being populist and appealing to the common man. He’s afraid of losing his seat, as he clearly states, so if he gets some extra publicity by swearing and making the point that he didn’t screw the country, but others did, well maybe he’ll get back in by the skin of his teeth next time. People on doorsteps will be staying ‘sure they should all be told to f**k off, thanks Paul’. It was a tactical move, probably planned in advance.

          • liam

            It was an emotional move, not planned at all, I suspect. How the art of debate as evaporated. Regardless of your politics, Stagg deserved a better repost than this.

        • liam

          Tim, in all fairness, what Staggs sexual preferences may or may not be, and regardless of their legality, have no baring whatsoever on what one would regard as acceptable behaviour by an elected representative whilst in the Dail. ‘Fuck’ is not a term usually associated with a rational debate.

          • tony_murphy

            I am not at all surprised by behaviour like this from an Irish politicians They are not civilised people.

          • tony_murphy

            Just to clarify, I was referring to Mr Gogarty’s usage of foul language.

          • Tim

            Liam, a person’s sexual preference/orientation is of no interest to me; I was pointing towards a broader notion of “standards-in-public-office”, I guess.

            In Irish public office, the standards are very low. They can break the law, break the rules, behave in a terribly uncouth manner “and no knave brought to book”.

  28. [...] article from David McWilliams.   While he makes some valid points he does not offer any alternatives to the [...]

  29. Tim

    Why did the Entire Labour Partry “abstain” from the vote on “Carbon-Taxes”?

    (One vote forces a General-Election).

  30. wills

    Posters -

    Question : Now that all bank debts and property debts passed too taxpayers and budget nailing it all down, one is pondering the following.

    With Iceland and then Dubai de – faulting on its obligations and Greece on the brink of following suit will Ireland be next?

    • wills

      Is the Irish Government sneakily standing in line waiting too declare a de – fault?

      The next stage in the elites ‘passing of the buck’ scam circumventing the system correctifying itself according too market making functionality, the ruling elites and vested interests are sitting tight while passing all the private debts onto the governments balance sheet / taxpayers and awaiting for the governments inevitable declaring of a sovereign de fault readying themselves for the next move on the back of such an event.

      • Deco

        Wills, for us in Ireland there are three external slow moving problems emerging.
        1) The UK has every intention of printing money until the British banks are solvent again. Brown is more concerned about the superficial than the real legacy. If £1UK to €0.90 is tough, wait until it hits £1.20UK to €1.
        2) The US will have to print dollars to keep intself afloat – and this will mean a falling dollar. Which is deflationary for everybody exporting to the US. It also means that these mega-stimulus plans will run out of impact. US interest rates will be forced up.
        3) Our continued membership of the PIGS will be of more relevance than our membership of the EU. Basically the PIGS are too fat, and need to go on slim fast. As you can see we are in serious trouble. If you read down you will see that two PIGS in particular are in serious delusion and borrowing hand over fist.

        I expect some sort of fiscal crisis in the PIGS next year. Note Monsiuer Trichets address to the issue of ECB policy (do a search for the phrase “Monsieur Trichet” on the website above.
        { “There is only one Euro, one rate of interest, and one exchange rate”. }
        To which we can add the unmentioned assumption to each of the PIGS governments “get your own house in order”.

  31. New Glue -
    The ECB is presently formulating a new stronger super glue that will not fail to become a Monetary Adhesive that will ensure that the Twins of France and Germany are forever entwined .And that rest are ‘gogartised’ away from the center of activity to meditate on their future directions without they casting a virus all over the existing dysfuntional monetary family as it is at present.Expect this new Market Launch to be anounced at a cinema near you SOON.

  32. Gogarty displays a parliamentary ‘blue moment’ to add to the passing season .

  33. Tim

    Folks, we must dig-up some info on this here: from Nouriel Roubini, via twitter at 21:21 tonight,

    “if you want protection against inflation risk stock up on Spam that you can at least eat rather than Gold that has no intrinsic value or use”

    I have been stock-piling a bunker, but am surprised to see an economist of his stature recommending same.

    What has he just learned?

    Let’s keep at it!

  34. wills

    Maybe this link here may shed a little light.

    According too the WSJ Golden sacks much more closely intertwined with AIG and heavily heavily further involved with the mortgage insurance fraud in USA than they cared to tell the truth on back in 2008.

  35. wills

    Tim, here is an article roubini scribed for FT in November. It analysis the carry trade on dollar and subsequent the ‘mother of all asset bubbles’ which he predicts is going too burst and with it us all take a fall.
    So, perhaps he see’s this asset bubble about to pop.

    • wills

      regarding what he see’s signaling the pop, well, thats anyone’s guess, but perhaps it is as he says in article, the dollar suddenly reversing and appreciating. If one looks at gold, it’s retreating all week and back down too 1100 dollar from 1200 two weeks ago thus indicating a significant rally in dollar.

      So, if dollar keeps rallying then roubini gets the global asset bubble pop and hence run on spam.

      • Tim

        wills, thanks for links.

        It looks as though the “games” are nearing the end; all the gambling that caused the recession and credit-crunch seem to have driven the marketeers into this “shorting” malarky and now into the “carry-trade”.

        Looks like, when the music stops next time, there are no new “instruments” yet dreamed-up to keep playing the game.

        Looks like he has concluded that, then, the only important thing will be survival, when all the artificial financial games are over.

        gquinn informed us over a year ago about this “shorting” and Phillip has been right all-along about getting back to community and growing your own food and returning to nature.

        For Roubini to make that remark is quite something. Long shelf-life canned-goods becoming a better investment than Gold, in his estimation – Wow!

        Keep stocking-up your bunker.

        Let’s keep at it.

        • wills

          tim, agreed, also, if its the case this carry trade is the final roll of the financial instrument dice, the other side of it will be sovereign debt de – default perhaps and crash of fiat money system perhaps so canned food and ocala blue water system and items for bartering on hand and multiplicity of skills and so on is in the offing.

  36. AndrewGMooney

    A blunt bludgeon of a budget, but if the only tool you have is a hammer, then everything looks like a nail and you just bang away. Until you realise you should have thought it through , used screws and rawlplugs, now the shelf won’t stay on the wall. So you grab at the tube of grab adhesive and just sit back and hope the yoke doesn’t collapse when you put your Idiot’s Guide To Economics textbook on it.

    No, Lenihan is not exactly the sharpest tool in the box. If fact he appears to have no grasp of linking macroeconomic ‘helicopter’ overview to join up the dots of a geo-political strategy for the requisite ‘national vision’ thing. Oh, I forget. That’s Cowen’s job. No problemo there. *rollseyes*

    Colm McCarthy’s ‘an bord snip’ has been airbrushed out of view until next year….but I forget, in this ‘deflation lite’ scenario, everyone’s ‘over the worst of it’. Debt deflation is as easily managed as an asset boom. Price Stability will be restored within due course. So long as the US/UK QE perversions carry on working.

    Let’s see the reaction of the ‘official’ Irish press:

    Kevin Myers: ‘Greatest crime is that the inhabitants of black economy are subjects of such adoring fiction’…Kev doesn’t focus his splenetic ire on the banksters or the Pythonesque expenses of public officials. Oh no, let’s not talk about the Budget, let’s talk about the survivalist black economy. That black pit of cash-in-hand that is the ‘permanent probably unemployable without massive public spending eductation and training’. Investment measures which ain’t gonna happen under his bizarre wet-dream fantasy ‘capitalism’ of hard-working drones who play by the rules of the hive.

    Ian O’Doherty sez: ‘Why should we give these lazy, work-shy scum free money?’ Of course, he’s not talking about politicians or bankers either. Or crap journalists who don’t ‘get it’ that they’re just bloggers on the payroll and not half as ‘incisive’ and ‘challenging’ as they probably think when they’re ruminating up this rubbish on the bog. I’ll pay Google to exclude any future articles from these clowns alongside any by Murdoch’s minions of Mordor.

    Back-bone free, but how brave of ye both: Attack the untermensch to distract anger from the strong and ruthless who are busy felching each other when they’re not riding the taxpayer.

    Now that’s what I call crusading journalism. Is this what Vernonica Guerin died for…..?

    ‘Bankers quake over ‘super tax” sez Fionna Walsh in the Irish Times. British bankers being spanked on the arse by Deputy Headmaster Darling that is, not Irish ones being called in Deputy Headmaster Lenihan’s office for six of the best.

    Still, in a ‘break with the past’: Anglo, the ‘state-owned bank’ of the ‘bank owned state’, is chasing former boss as a ‘scapegoat’ distraction to BanaNAMA.

    Why does The Irish Times has a ‘London Briefing’ prominent in its’ business section but no ‘Berlin Briefing’, or ‘Boston Briefing’? Does Mary Harney read the Irish Times? She needs to talk to them about authentic Irish business ‘spirituality’. LOL!

    Vincent Browne is entirely correct in his analysis. This budget represents class warfare against the public sector and those dependent on the public sector to distract the gaze from the smoking Chernobyl of NAMA. It also represents class warfare against the SME sector. Unless they’re alcohol retailers.

    As Aer Fungus moves it’s base to Britain, and advertises shopping and drinking binges on the Irish Times, clearly the Newry ‘challenge’ is gaining legs.
    But Brian’s innovative ‘lateral thinking’ on excise duty and VAT equalisation this time around will banjax those consumer traitors…… You couldn’t make this up without a shed loada drugs.

    Brian is relying on stimulus elsewhere to rescue Ireland whilst he swings the wrecking ball? I guess that’s the edict from Angela as Germany awaits Chinese payments for BMW’s and precision engineering equipment. Until the Communist managed Capitalist credit orgy there blows up. Which it will. Soon.

    This ‘we’ that Lenihan is singing about like he was Captain Sensisble performing ‘Happy Talk’ is strictly FF ‘insider’ Ireland. It is a ‘country’ fully willing and able to sell it’s soul to become a ‘vassal state’. DMcW’s has been littering his articles with clues. Let me spell it out because, hey, Roy Keane can’t stare me out- I’m just an ‘English c**t’ and this is my reverse Saipan Exocet to the heart of Dublin tonight:

    NB: The collapse of East Germany is the template for absorbing negligent regions into the C21st Franco-Prussian Empire of ERM/Greater Germania. Battle plans aare being finalised by Trichet. Negligent regions such as Greece. Spain and Ireland will be ‘re-constituted’ as fringe tributary income streams in perpetuity.

    Of coure, this is just paranoid nonsense, and I’m just another official MI6 ‘spook’. Oh well, the ‘plastic paddy’ disguise was good whilst it lasted.

    ‘WHEN THE facts change, I change my mind. What do you do, sir?”

    David is right. This is an ‘i wash my hands of it’ Budget, feeding the deflationary vortex which is already crucifying private demand. You don’t solve a Private Sector Leverage Crisis / Business Cycle Investment Strike by dragging the Public Sector down the plughole as well. To supposedly ‘share the pain’. You won’t ‘share the pain’, you’ll just compound it.

    This isn’t the C19th. You can’t just have a ‘panic’ and let the great unwashed take it on the chin whilst you hide gold bars under the bed. People have the Interweb now, thanks to that dratted fiat money/FDR New Deal/Great Society public education nonsense all you flat-earth Austrian Economic Taleban fundamentalists get so wound up about. No wonder Goldman Sachs ‘staff’ want to get tooled up.

    As Michael Hudson states, debts that cannot be paid, won’t be. A politician with balls and brains would just say: “Forget this nonsense of the ‘principal’ debt, let’s talk cents on the euro, paid as interest/reparations for the Great Economic War of 2008/9 or however many more years it drags on/escalates/implodes. Payable out as a percentage of renewed growth in GDP.”

    Iceland, a country the size of Coventry stands up to the bullies of the IMF. But Ireland is going to be put on the rack by the ECB? I see Argentina is about to return to the fold….. It’s gonna be a bit of a problem if there’s half the Eurozone doing the ol’ Argy-bargy on debt default. Not that I’m suggesting anyone threatens to blow up the Euro. That would be…irresponsible.

    Ship of Fools , Fintan O’Toole. White/Black/Grey Swans. Donald ‘hawkeye’ Rumsfelt. “unknown knowns”, “understood to be the case and yet remained unreal”. “this worked as a kind of collective psychosis”.

    Can a Budget be Psychotic?

    Even the genius of Chris Morris couldn’t make this up. To close, here is ‘The Day Today’, Ireland’s Budget with Peter O’Hanrahanrahan:

    • Tim

      AndrewGMoone, that post took time. Thank you.

      It should be required reading.

      It seems that everybody here believes the meeja-spin that the Public-sector and the private-sector are separate.

      Of course, they are not.

      But how do we reverse this? Convince them of that?

      Everything is “inter-linked”.

    • AndrewGMooney

      Typo: EMU not ERM, although the ‘vassal states’ extend to the pinnion pegs of Latvia and the like.

      I forgot the other ‘elephant in the room’ besides the delusional ECB. That sickly elephant would be those legally tax-compliant but ethically dubious Yank FDI corporates and The Corporation Tax ‘undiscussable debate’, a stymied topic the suppression of which is way past it’s sell by date.

      Having harvested vast sums of money from basing multiple corporations in a few office blocks in Dublin, and given that O’bama ain’t gonna put up with that ‘Cayman Ireland In The Rain’ to-bo to the max nonsense for much longer:

      Wouldn’t it be a gesture of gratitude for all you CEO/CFO’s working Lenihan’s glove puppet to just face up, fess up and ‘do the right thing’?

      Accepting a temporary rise in Corporation Tax to effect some meaningful emergency ‘dig-out’ to Ireland will help get your vanishing credibility (and accounting schenanigans) together so you’re ready to face the wrath of Geithner. Or Volker, more like.

      Yes, Google. Intel. I’m talking to you. Let’s not mention that unfortunate German bank which nearly imploded the Irish State on its’ own….

      Don’t give me any of that bollix about ‘international competition for talent’. You can all just pack up and feck off to Dubai in a race to the bottom if that’s your business ethics ‘bottom line’. Good luck with that one. At least you’ll have some sunshine. And partially-desalinated ‘cooler breaks’. Sounds fab.

      If basing your quills and ledgers in Dublin is ‘mission critical dependent’ on the current Corporation Tax rate, then, like Dell, the day will come when some other country competes successfully in the race to the bottom such as to lure you away.

      Actually, South Africa is ideally placed, time-zone-wise. Nice climate. Safe ‘enclaves’ away from all the ‘unproductive cities’. Estates with wine groves. English speaking. Well quasi-English.

      I love the genius idea of a ‘distractionary civil war’ between public/private sheeple factions of a supposedly unified Sovereign Irish State; whilst a possible viper’s nest of corporate leeches goes unchallenged. In thrall to the Church, the Banks and the Benevolent Corporate Raiders, I mean Rescuers from across the seas.

      The relationship between Capital, Citizen and Country can either be Symbiotic or Parasitic. I think it’s time for the Host Nation to face the question of whether their erstwhile ‘FDI Corporate Saviours’ are in it for The Long-Term, in which case a temporary ‘dig-out’ uptick on Corporation Tax is a reputational necessity.

      Call it ‘Ireland Aid’, get Bob Geldof to have a purposeful rant, and Bono to have a sing-a-thon whilst he repatriates the U2 Corporation for taxation purposes.

      Inquiring minds are wondering whether the FDI Corporates are the Emperor’s New Clothes. Whether there’s an Incubus / Succubus scenario to be unpacked, teased out, dissected. No wonder Lenihan’s munching garlic…..but what vampires is he actually in danger from?

      Oh, and don’t any smart alec come back with ‘econometrics’ gobbledygook to me. In case you haven’t noticed: Economics Is Toast. You need to find a new ‘career’. Try Astrology. Or ask Nicholas Nassim Taleb for pointers on The Next Big Thing in risk modelling to robustify The Matrix against more episodes of mayhem.

      Finally (!) I was challenged to return to this blog and ‘Tell-it-like-it-T-IS!’ by a young Irish lad. He says: ‘you haven’t got the balls, have you given up?’. I says: ‘As if. My balls: Your chin. Don’t diss me…..’

      I guess DMcW’s will have to ban me again now on orders from the Internal Security Apparatus. Oh well! It’s been fun.

      • Tim

        Ok, ok, ….. I’m sorry I lefy-out the “Y”……….

        (wont happen again, Sir!).

      • tony_murphy

        It is strange that the EU “puts up” with Irelands low corporation tax and that most of the GDP comes from American corporations.

        From what I can gather, the main reason Ireland is in the EURO is because these corporations wanted us to be in the EURO.

        The American empire doesn’t have any troops here, well except those transiting through Shannon, but it does provide most employment.

        The Irish media is very biased towards the American message, the other side does not really get heard

        We are not just answerable to the EU, but we are answerable to the US as well.

        Personally, I think in the interests of future generations, we should try to stand on our own feet and aim to remove dependence on the US and EU as soon as possible

    • wills

      andrew -

      Original and thought provoking angle on the POnzi Rep.

      On the ‘black economy’ myers point. The ruling powers created a black economy, the blackest of which remains bailing out banks in the back rooms.

      Also, the ruling elites facilitate a zero out on icome tax below 18,000 euro cos it keeps the masses less rebellious and just about sweetened on minimal comfort and so averse on revolt.

      On the ireland brit link all one has to do is investigate ANIB links too AIG in the city of london and one will discover the vested interests who control and rule Ireland behind the fake left right political paradigm.

  37. wills

    Poster :

    This Bowz Gogarty voted for NAMA.

    This ‘father jack’ epo is an attempt to gouge himself out of personal guilt over selling Ireland ‘out’ to a criminal banking syndicate casino gambling outfit.

  38. Deco

    What is about the Irish banks/finance institutions, self regulation, the same old faces and regulation ?

    Who should be put in charge of the investors watchdog “The Irish Association of Investment Managers” IAIM ?

    We need a “safe pair of hands” ! Yes, when looking for somebody to do this important job – the phrase “SAFE PAIR OF HANDS” is going around inside the heads of those who nominate.

    So there you go. Senator Ross is telling us that one of the financial engineers behind the loan to make Anglo Irish Bank look solvent (and thereby fool the ANIB shareholders) is now in charge of monitoring the ISEQ companies on behalf of investors.

    Once again – ‘you really could not make it up’.

    Time for another scoundrel for resign.

    • Tim

      Deco, “Prosecution, not resignation” for scoundrels.

      I wonder who is holding the Gardaí back at the moment. Surely, they abhor these elitist-wasters as much as anybody, by now, with all the cuts they have taken since October 2008.

      Why have there been no arrests?

      Even the Minister for transport (for whom, personally, I have no time whatsoever) has declared publicly, on several occasions, that the banksters should be arrested for economic treason.

      So, who is holding the Gardaí on this tight leash?

      Even with the cover-up Bishops, proven in the Murphy report to be “Accessories-after-the-fact”, have not been handcuffed.

      Is it the Commissioner? The Minister for Justice? An Taoiseach?

      Who is preventing the Gardaí from arresting the “white-collar” (collars of all types) criminals in Ireland?

      My wife told me the other day that an old man was arrested for not having a dog-license; three Gardaí arrived at his home; he was sent to Mountjoy prison, where, thankfully, a short time later, the warden released him on the grounds of stupidity of the imprisonment.

      Now, we see that you can be incarcerated for not having a dog-license, but you will not be arrested for economic treason, nor for covering-up for child-molestation.

      As Proinsíos de Rossa once said in Dáil Éireann, “What kind of a count …. count…. country are we living in?”

      • wills

        i saw some old chisler on a bicycle in a well lite up suburb fined for not wearing one of those ott yellow anaoraky yoke me bobs plastic crappy things, last week, by 2 gardai on mountain bikes, i kid you not, the poor man looked white and the lady garda wrote him out a ticket as i stood there agog and dismayed (momentarily), as she was fallen over her mountain bike outside a supermarket shopping center.

        Shane Ross on finucane to day, i missed it.

        • Josey

          this is making my blood boil. Why didn’t you say anything to the Gardaí??? Silence is deemed as agreement in LAW!!!

          FFS Lads, when we see crap like this we have to speak up!!!

          • wills

            josey -

            Best to box clever.

            The gardai would lap it up throwing characters like me into the cells for a few hours and charging me with interference of their duty.

            I’ve learnt from past.

            Martin Sheen may argue differently but the gardai in Ireland attract a certain mindset into its ranks and i know through common sense better too fight the long game and keep out of sight from the droogees on the loose in the system at the moment.

            josey, do not despair, all of these guy;s from top too bottom are been meeting their obsolesence fate and time is fossilizing the lot of them into oblivion i can assure you of that.

            Its merely s waiting game at this stage and bearing witness to their crimes and immoral behaviour.

          • Josey

            Yes Wills, I know but they can’t arrest you for asking a questions, as we are their paymasters after all.

            But aren’t we heading into this NWO…? We have to resist at every corner. If everyone stands up they’ll back down cos we are the overwhelming silent majority.

          • wills

            josey -

            These droogees loo laa s are so wound up cos they all know their cozy thumbsucking universe is crashing down all around them and just take stock and keep informed and watch stanley kubrick movies where the apocalypto end times for these big babies is outlined.

      • Alan42

        Tim , do you snigger at people in wheelchairs as well ?

        • Tim

          Alan42, What? Why would I do that? “as well” as whom?

          I have not “sniggered” at anyone.

          How do you dream-up these ad hominem attacks?

    • tony_murphy

      Isn’t it true that pension fund investment managers are required to spend a percentage of the fund on Irish stocks?

      I don’t have a pension. I withdrew from these scams years ago. I’d rather reach retirement with no money than hand it over to the biggest wasters on the planet

      • Josey

        T_M by the time my generation retire in 20 odd years there will be no pension funds left so it’s a waste of time. Anyone’s present pennsion fund contributions go to pay the present pensioners pension. Thats the way it works, one step out of phase. The young pay for the old and so on. That’s why italy and France are having a pensions crisis because they’re population is aging and the young aren’t having children.

    • Josey


      I’m starting to think we need a military Coup…5yrs of a benevolent, centre right military Junta, get people working, scrap all the banks, build an inter city road and rail and broadband network, nationalise the country’s gas and oil reserves and close off the fishing waters.

      Maybe a mix between Norway and Venezuela.

      But who can we trust with such a job?
      Unless God himself comes down from Heaven…

  39. Some day the NAMA debacle will be a blockbuster movie with a cast of bankers, politicians, and of course -developers.!
    Of course the saga is only beginning:

  40. tony_murphy

    There is one person who really scares Fianna Fail, that’s Brendan Ogle, I heard him on radio yesterday and one thing is for certain, the ESB workers will not be taking a pay cut

  41. sean79

    Lets look at the variables, David
    Consumption – so low in 2009 as it was such an uncertain year for people. As people are regaining more certainty (however low), I believe that people will spend more in 2010

    Exports – Ireland doesn’t operate in a bubble of its own. The country is connected to the rest of the world in terms of trade. As the international economy picks up, you have to expect that our exports will too.
    Investment – Ireland is still a rich country. People with money are presumably going to want to invest when the right opportunity will come along. Again as the international economy picks up, there will be more investment opportunity’s in Ireland.
    Sure, government spending is dropping. That’s not such a bad thing as the economy returns to growth. Isn’t this Keynesian economic theory?

    Things are not that bad, imo.

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