December 23, 2009

Banking chief will face deep opposition to reform

Posted in Banks · 107 comments ·
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The easy-credit drug was pushed from the top, right down to the poor debt junkies at the bottom

Could Patrick Honohan be our Noel Browne? Could Honohan’s inquiry into the fiasco of the banking mess be the 21st century equivalent of Browne’s Mother and Child scheme?

Noel Browne was opposed not just by the bishops. The bishops driven by theology would obviously be against him. But it went deeper. Browne was also opposed by the doctors who were driven by self-interest. The doctors didn’t want their incomes being determined by some quasi-socialist state scheme overseen by the government any more than the bishops wanted their hold over the family to be weakened by the State. In the 1950s, the power base of the local doctor and the local priest or bishop dominated rural Irish life. Had Browne succeeded in breaking this, he would have destroyed the central pillars of Irish society.

Browne was driven by a desire to eradicate TB. Our incidence of TB was three times higher than Britain’s. This didn’t matter to the people who ran the place. To them, Browne’s crime was that he threatened the real power nexus in Ireland — the Church and the local supportive bourgeoisie who sat up the front at Mass. Thus this uppity medic had to be stopped.

In the case of the new Central Bank governor Patrick Honohan, he is equally threatening the power base of the country. He will be opposed by some senior politicians who are opposed to upsetting the status quo — particularly when they are implicated in the affair. They were the primary cheerleaders of the boom because the more credit the banks gave out, the more tax revenue the politicians got to dole out to pet projects. Why would the senior political class have anything to gain from an inquiry, which will conclude that they are guilty?

But it goes much deeper than that. Honohan will also be violently opposed by certain senior people in the Central Bank and the Financial Regulator who now work in the same building as him. He is their boss but he is clean, whereas many of them are part of the problem. Could it be that some of the top brass in the Central Bank and the Financial Regulator, all from the same stable in Dame Street, might want to thwart the new boss in his drive for openness?

But if Honohan gets his way (which he should) lots more issues will be raised. And these are deep issues and go to the root of who runs the country. This is why Honohan is dangerous. Take for example the cosy relationship between the big auditors of the banks and the banks themselves. The auditors signed off on the balance sheets of the banks — without question — when it was clear that the banks were behaving delinquently.

Remember that the Irish banks went from having a loan to deposit ratio of 100pc in the early noughties — which was normal — to a loan to deposit ration of 160pc in 2007 — which was terrifying. Yet the auditors said nothing. Might Honohan’s probing lead to a civil case against one of the large auditors? What would happen then?

And what about the boards of these banks? What did they do to check the madness of the executives and protect the depositors? Well, they did nothing.

Today most of the bank boards remain in place despite the carnage. I remember a conversation with two board members of one of our largest banks a few years ago where I was told that I was a “dangerous voice”. These same people are still drawing salaries, having failed monumentally.

In the case of Anglo Irish alone, the scandals raise enormous questions — not just about this bank, but about the ethics of senior sections of Irish business. How could a “whip round” of the golden circle in summer 2008 — which was a totally illegal share-support scheme — be seen as normal? How could the “bed and breakfasting” arrangements of bank executives using other banks to hide their personal loans be regarded by other executives as kosher? And what about end of year massaging of deposits?

Could the inquiry examine in depth the financial journalists who were refusing to ask hard questions, and were coming out with nonsense about new paradigms and the uniqueness of Irish banking culture based on claptrap called “relationship banking”?

If Honohan’s inquiry goes deep, many bizarre practices will be exposed. So the new governor will not just have to contend with the immediate executives of the banks but he will unravel a deeply corrupted system. We will see how, at the bottom, mortgage brokers were on the boards of estate agents where one outfit was hyping prices and the other outfit financing the loans to pay these silly valuations. The brokers, working on commission, had the incentive to lend as much money as possible out. But where did they get the cash? From the big banks of course who were using the mortgage brokers as salesmen on steroids.

In my book ‘Follow the Money’, I compare the entire financial scam in Ireland to a drugs cartel where the easy-credit drug was pushed from the top and right down to the poor debt junkies at the bottom. The entire system was corrupted throughout. Although distasteful, the comparison is valid.

And this is what Honohan threatens with his inquiry. He threatens the entire system. He says he doesn’t want glib comments but rather a forensic and quick inquiry to get to the root of the problem. But like Browne, he is taking on the power in Ireland and that is why he will be opposed, stymied, and attacked at every juncture.

The spinning is starting already. For example; yesterday I was listening to RTE radio and the presenter asked a guest whether he believed that now, with the world looking at Ireland, was a good time for us to be hanging out our dirty linen regarding the banks! Here we go again; let’s not protect our own citizens because, using the perverted logic of our vested interests, protecting our citizens from a rapacious elite looks bad! What planet are these people living on?

In a sense, you can regard Honohan’s very public urging for an open enquiry as a “cry for help” from a new governor who realises that the truth will never be found by going back to the usual suspects.

He sits atop a corrupted and discredited institution, surrounded by people who have no interest in him succeeding. He realises he has to go outside, and in so doing he is rocking the boat — not just the banking boat and political boat, but the entire edifice that has governed the country for years.

The more you look at both men, Honohan and Browne, the more the similarities are striking. Browne’s objective was eradicating the disease of TB but to do this he has to overturn the system, the real power nexus. Honohan’s objective is getting to the bottom of the banking mess, but in so doing, he will need to shine a light on all areas of Irish business and politics.

In this effort, he needs all of our support.


  1. Well said (again), David! They have no shame.

    Wouldn’t you and Michael Hudson be a powerful twosome for Gov. Patrick Honohan to bring together to help sort out the banks’ excesses?

  2. Salvation :
    I want to agree with everything you have said above and I hope it is true and if it is we are very lucky .Trust is a hard experience to share now in these times and time will tell us if this new appointment is a fair and professional appointment that will be objective and pragmatic and serve the country well.It is Ideal to be wishful now and easy because it is Christmas but in a few weeks the new year will have moved on in a new direction .What that direction is will be interesting to follow and how it will impact will even be more interesting .
    Personalities or lack of them will no doubt be the ‘compass navigator measurement instrument ‘ that will send out the signals to everyone how the performance is working.
    Maybe this bearded appointment might be the Beard we all waited for.

  3. G

    Honohan is more Samson than Noel Browne, because if he keeps pushing he will bring the temple down, the ‘pillars’ of our society – ‘the professionals’ ‘journalists’, ‘politicians’ and all the other carpetbaggers with their hands in the till.

    Prime Times Investigates also raises yet more serious questions. ‘Nobody broke the law’ is the standard refrain, but surely there must now be legislation on conflict of interests for those in the public domain i.e. politicians getting preferential loans from financial institutions – surely this practice should be made illegal especially in light of the property and economic collapse – people on both sides of the deal, in the legislature and setting policy and also involved in directly related ‘business’ activities.

    I am glad Honohan has called for an enquiry, a shot at Cowen who immediately through cold war on the idea because he knows where it will lead.

    They’re probably looking for Honohan’s dirty linen to see if they can silence him. I wish him well, he does come across as a man of integrity.

    @ John Allen – Prof. Honohan is more Gandalf the Grey than Mr. Fox :-) – the man has balls and I respect him for his moves so far.

  4. G – Sometimes it is worth knowing to see with an extra sense and astrology makes that possible .Maybe he is a Scorpio and if that could be confirmed or his true sign for that matter if it is another we all can share a deeper insight into what might happen and who might he really be .

    • G

      I take your point John Allen, there is something to it, the Aztecs knew it and so does my friend Kevin. October ’49 is all I can find online, maybe others can shed the necessary light.

      Honohan has been thrown into the ring by the current crisis, an interesting man, maybe others (women too :-) will emerge into the light, I hope 2010 brings the kind of change to Ireland that young people like myself crave, we are tired of the old structures that restrict, we want a breakout.

      • Malcolm McClure

        G: I agree, this is one of DMcW’s best columns of the year and is very timely. I heard Honohan speak at Glenties Macgill Summer School where he said: “At a time of crisis the character and priorities of prudential banking policy move through three phases: containment, resolution and
        prevention”:
        http://www.tcd.ie/Economics/staff/phonohan/Glenties.pdf
        Speaking about prevention he said: “If bank insiders and shareholders are seen as getting off too lightly, this will surely worsen recklessness next time around–moral hazard as it is known.”
        I wish both him and David every success in their efforts to restore normality to the Irish banking sector in 2010.

  5. G – the date is important too as is the month .If we all knew the signs of all our new leaders now it would increase our transparency and our sense of presence .It’s now too serious to ignore.
    October can tell you that he is either a Libra or a Scorpio both are so different as chawk and cheese .Personally I would think he is a Scorpio and if he is – let no man thread his path and he takes no prisoners ….and thats just the beginning . If he is a Libra ….well lets say he would be like ‘ Ivan Yates with his own Documentary Programme.

    • G

      Indeed………my father is a scorpion, honest, fair but tough as nails, hates injustice and naturally seeks justice for those ill treated & for underdog, can come across as cold, but heart of a lion without the social niceties.

      As for Ivan Yates, well not a fan (putting that the nicest way I can given the week that’s in it)!!!!!!

  6. wills

    David.

    All eyes are most definitely on this guy in a beard. BL posted ‘em there which is also very very telling and worth keeping in mind.

    No better way to control people than through disease and weakening of body weakens the mind.

    David this article in my p.o.v frames the ‘reality and its incumbent drama s afoot’ at play in our country to day demanding citizenry action.

    This ‘contagion’ lives on the back of ‘implied consent’.

    They perpetrate their scamming on the back of a twisted truth. They view the outside world through the lens of a delinquent child above moral inspection, internally, free to do whatever they decide is their child like allowance to do so in a world they perceive as ‘unfair’.

    In their distant childhood past they opted out of the ‘growing up’ process. Opted out cos growing up offered nothing but ‘all work and no play’.

    So, an excellent means through which o understand this moral bankruptcy enveloping us is ‘dennis the menace’. They see themselves and their skullduggery as merely just ‘given over too high jinks’ and they perceive anyone going with the growing up process as ‘class licks’ and ‘class swots’ and eejits giving over childhood freedoms for future all work and no play.

    Know thy enemy.

  7. Dilly

    Excellent article !. I was livid when I read an article on the RTE website, which blamed Honohan for causing bank shares to plunge.

    • G

      RTE seem to be doing a lot of damage. Highlighting the so called public servants who were heading to Newry, Mary Wilson repeated such drivel on her ‘Drivetime’ show, soft interveiws (see Hanafin on Frontline with Kenny the Great) and then the Honohan comment (timing is interesting don’t you think).

      Vincent Browne called it viciously right wing, a ‘public disservice broadcaster’. Interesting that the government over the years attacked RTE as a nest of left wingers………few left wingers on 400k/850k. Strange setup in that place, the sport and ciruses, with light infotainment is quite sickening, few programmes of substance, their underreporting of Copenhagen and world affairs generally is astonishingly bad, instead morbid preoccupation with road crashes and medical negligence.

      Joe Duffy was talking of his political aspirations, God help us, that’s not change we can believe in, doubt he’ll give up the salary, just makes for a headline for the article – more media collusion?.

      Gaybo called for imprisonment of bankers, Prime Time showed a clip of Gaybo greeting Fingleton on the Late Late a few years back, interesting that they included that clip, a little nailing possibly?

      To be honest, shareholders and people investing their ‘life savings’ in financial institutions shouldn’t be complaining, they played the game, and losing it all is a real possibility in that system, the banks have committed worse crimes, but self-interest rules it seems, even when it comes to ‘justice’, which you rarely get in a court of law or ‘palace of criminality’ as a friend once memorably said and he is a Leo!

      • wills

        G -

        Spot on. My social circles also say nearly word for word the rte neews room coverage of car crashes and medical stuff weird.

  8. SLICKMICK

    Honahan has as much relevance as a customs officer standing on the Louth border.Why does the central bank employ 800 people?.What do they do all day?.Why has nobody taken a swing @ Seanie?.The timidness of Irish people is beyond belief!.A bunch of wusses who desrve to be the new Paraguay.Why bother anymore?.Honahan was more dangerouis while in academia.Why he thinks NAMA will work is beyond me.He is in a minority of about 3.

  9. Hi David,
    Again an excellent article
    But from my flu ridden bed, this article has not made me feel any better!
    While I would be in agreement with most of what you say I am wondering why you even bother anymore? I am not as optimistic as you even seem to want to be!
    Too many vested interests are threatened, and the powerful and the great will strike down this honest man, I am willing to take a bet on it!
    This is Just the latest r example of the golden Circle’s influence and again (if we needed it) proof of political corruption in this country
    What will be the next revelation to come from your pen?
    Chances are it will make me feel even sicker!
    We the people must take action, ringing up the various radio stations talk shows or even writing comment on this blog, just won’t cut it for me any more!
    How long will it take for the rest of Ireland to wake up and revolt against this corrupt system? That robs from the poor and gives to the chosen few
    We have put up with these leaches for long enough,
    “Open revolt”
    It is the only way the ordinary people will be able to bring all these criminals to justice!

  10. Patrick Honohan certainly is in a position to shake the system, but if he chooses to do so he will be biting ‘the hand that feeds’. I will be surprised if we see anything more than tinkering with regulations, lengthy reports (mostly unreadable) and fudging the real factors that motivated the financial oligarchs to make the killing they made.

    What puzzles is why so many people accept the law of the jungle when it comes to economic and social policy — in every other aspect of our social being the laws of science are applied to solving and understanding problems — why not economy?

    Economic development in Ireland, or in any other country, shouldn’t be dictated by the need for some ‘insiders’ or fast buck merchants making a profit. This old accepted way of looking at things has resulted in curtailment of production on a grand scale and has left millions of humans in devastation. With this anarchy of economic planning, the role of ‘economists’, Mr. Honohan included, seems to be that of, firstly, trying to understand the anarchy of what has taken place, and secondly, guessing as to what might happen in the future.

    In the bigger picture, the work produced by the virtual army of such economic ‘experts’ provides a great portion of the necessary screening to prevent the majority from understanding what is happening. Most analysts get paid big bucks for doing this import work for the ruling ‘bourgeoisie’, they get their rewards is various sizes and colors of envelopes.

  11. roc

    David said: “…Take for example the cosy relationship between the big auditors of the banks and the banks themselves. The auditors signed off on the balance sheets of the banks – without question – when it was clear that the banks were behaving delinquently… Yet the auditors said nothing. Might Honohan’s probing lead to a civil case against one of the large auditors? What would happen then?…”

    ——————————————-

    Now we’re getting somewhere. I’ve been on about this for a long while. These big consultancy and accountancy firms provided the justification and the authority for what went on. Forget the developers. They were not the masterminds. The real axis of corruption is these companies together with ‘the government’ and the banks.

    These companies provided the ‘science’ to facilitate the corruption and theft that went on. As Mikhail Bakunin wrote well over a hundred years ago, “…And in this day and age what is it that constitutes the principle underlying the power of the State? Why, it is science. Yes, science – Science of government, science of administration and financial science; the science of fleecing the flocks of the people without their bleating too loudly and, when they start to bleat, the science of urging silence, patience and obedience upon them; the science of deceiving and dividing the masses of the people and keeping them allays in a salutary ignorance lest they ever become able, by helping one another and pooling their efforts, to conjure up a power capable of overturning States…”

    • You have hit the nail on the head! The question is one of who holds state power … the current ruling class do indeed use ‘science’ to fool the people, part of the answer must be to use real science to expose them.

      Let’s discuss the principals on which our economic system should be based, and from that, the principals on which a political programme should be based in order to change things.

  12. Anybody out there interested in exploring the direct action rout?
    Then please contact me at bewilderedcitizens@gmail.com

  13. AndrewGMooney

    David shape-shifts, morphs back into seditionist mode. And good fun it is to follow the agent-provateur economic hit-man with a silencer on his weapon as he ‘will-o-the-wisps’ his way hither and yon…!

    Nollaig de Brún had a belly full of the Mullah Taliban De Valera’s ‘let’s go back to a mediaeval theocracy’ nonsense. Having been rescued and saved by exile to alien Saxon reaches of Eastbourne and Windsor, he returned to Dublin to fight the real fight for Ireland’s soul. Whilst Ireland was going backwards, he was watching The Future unfold as the ‘decadent Keynsianism’ of Post WW2 Britain launched its’ NHS, contested and despised by the ruling clique of ‘hippocratic hypocrites’ who wanted to carry on with their alien cries of “baksheesh! baksheesh!” -fleecing the working poor every time they walked in the door with a cough, a sneeze or a cold-sore.

    Aside: I wonder where Mary Harney’s going for Xmas? And I wonder if O’bama will get his ‘radical’ health care bill wrapped for Xmas, or will Big Insurance and Big Pharma grin-fcuk him. Again.

    Noel Browne watched developments in Eastbourne and Windsor. Watched whilst, with Debt as % of GDP over 240%: The Brits told the ‘vigilante Bond Markets’ to F.O.A.D: Fc-uk off and die! Here’s the only economic fact about Irelands’ neighbour that anyone needs to know:

    http://www.ukpublicspending.co.uk/downchart_ukgs.php?year=1900_2010&view=1&expand=&units=p&fy=2009&chart=G0-total&bar=0&stack=1&size=l&color=c&title=UK%20National%20Debt%20As%20Percent%20Of%20GDP

    Britain re-launched its’ Civilizational Project in celebration for vanquishing The Nazis with GDP debt ratio of 240%. The Brits ‘had a dream’. Still do. Just ask Alastair Darling (LOL!).

    How Noel Browne must have gazed in despair as the sheer waste and dogmatic fundamentalist psychoses, as the foundationalist Tragedy of the Irish Republic unfolded. Whilst ‘across the water’ the world-historic but now dysfunctional NHS was launched. Did Browne know the truth about The Industrial Schools and Magdalene Laundries? He must have felt very alone as he fought for the real dignity of Irish history. And how would he regard the HSE today as heir to his Mother And Child scheme?

    From Health to Banking. ‘Going Forward To A Healthy Banking System’ (sic):

    Honohan has now the chance to grasp the sword and relaunch the Irish Civilizational Project by wresting it from the brood of vipers that was/is/always will be the nonsensical FF/FG clusterfuck. And he can begin by having a chat with others in his role at the Central Banker’s Christmas Party this year. I suggest he has a chat with Stephen Haldane, the ‘official’ in charge of financial stability at the Bank of England whilst he grabs those Ferrrero Rocher and canapes. Here’s what Stephen has to says about the NAMA ‘doom loop’:

    ‘In an interview with the BBC World Service, Mr Haldane insisted that tougher regulation was needed because bankers have failed to learn the lesson of the credit crunch that brought the economy to its knees. Bankers needed to be stopped from re-entering a ‘doom loop’ where they continue to take ever-greater risks, he said. ‘It’s a loop we’ve been round repeatedly over the last 200 years which is every time we have one of these events, the public sector has ridden to the rescue, it has written the cheque.‘That has rather fortified the financial sector to double their bets for next time, which means when next time comes the cheque needs to be that much bigger.’

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1237100/Banker-exodus-bonuses-price-worth-paying-says-Bank-chief.html

    Meanwhile the venerable Paul Volcker summarizes The Greenspan Era that spawed credulous ‘leaders’ like Reagan, Thatcher, Bush, Blair, Bertie, Cowen and Brown, O’bama, by saying that the most useful financial innovation of the last 30 years has been……the cash-point machine.
    All worship[ped] at this idol with feet of hidden clay (Ayn Rand). All to greater or lesser degrees thought they’d been given a ‘bag of gold by the crafty merchant in Jack and The Beanstalk. But they’d been given a bag of beans. They sold their productive cows for a cash-cow fantasy of debt disguised as asset boom wealth. Now it’s time for a dose of reality. Just google to the NYTime’s ‘Greenspan’s Mea Culpa’:

    “I have found a flaw. I don’t know how significant or permanent it is. But I have been very distressed by that fact.” Mr. Waxman pressed the former Fed chair to clarify his words. “In other words, you found that your view of the world, your ideology, was not right, it was not working,” Mr. Waxman said. “Absolutely, precisely,” Mr. Greenspan replied. “You know, that’s precisely the reason I was shocked, because I have been going for 40 years or more with very considerable evidence that it was working exceptionally well.”

    So it’s banjaxed. It goes in the bin. It’s time for something new. And it’s time for a Banking Model that allows the Civilizational Nation State project that is Ireland, Britain, America or Germany to re-assert itself againts the orks, trolls, goblins and leprechauns of international finance. Sadly, with the euro-denomiated own-goal gaol called ‘NAMA’, it appears that the Irish Titanic may alread have set sail. Hope: Still time for people like Honohan to face down the cabal? Hopefully, Honohan, like Haldane and Mervyn King, is a skilled surgeon who can make the incisions to remove the diseased parts of the banking body politic. Sadly, due to the debt equation of B+B= NAMA: I personally suspect it’s too late. Just to annoy you all at Xmas, I’ll end with another bizarre outburst:

    I assure you, if there’s a ‘Minsky Moment’, True Brits won’t bat an eyelid, they’ll just get on with it. But there’ll be no surrender to balanced budget fanaticism. Not now. Not then. Not ever. It’s a trans-histroical, trans-generational debt-as-equity-cultural re-awakening thing. They didn’t fight Hitler to be bitch-slapped about by losers like Obama, Nicholas & Angela. The Yanks shanked The Brits with The Marshall Plan, the Lehmans’ grin-fcuk was part payback. Want more Geithner? Obama? Want a ‘twin towers’ Wall St / City of London death spiral? Are you sure you want to take on Alastair…again?

    Eric txts to Alastair: “Don’t Be Evil!”
    Darling replies: “Schmidt, get on your knees, purty lips. You’re now my new prison bitch”. Whilst wearing his ‘Just Detention International’ tee shirt. Congrats, Google. Meretricious & A Happy New Year! You’re about to be grin-fcuked. No lube.

    Does Honohan know where ‘The Unexploded Bombs’ he refers to are hidden in the I.F.S.C? I do. So does Alistair. And if forced: He’ll blow the whole place up. Then NYC. As I say, he’s a full-on Leonard Cohen man like myself. “First we take Manhattan, then we take….Dublin” Rather die a Citizen than live as a debt-peonage Slave, Britons never, never, never…etc

    (Radio announcer’s voice)
    “Was die Attentäter betrifft, die in Berlin den Anschlag auf die Deutsch-Arabische Gesellschaft verübt haben, ist die Polizei einen Schritt weiter gekommen. Die jetzt nach dem Anschlag…”

    Regards
    ‘Prince’ Alastair Sun Tzu Mooney aka:
    Mad Plastic Paddy From Brum

    • brum mayo

      A little bit angry maybe to those who have no need of conversion to see your opinion,still,some good points made,Do you have any idea where the money for the marshall plan came from considering the US was nigh bust by 1928/29 and elected Roosevelt to bring prosperity in 1932,spent a few dollars during ww2,was the main sponsor of the world bank at the time, was it QE or was it QE.
      If it was`nt then my learned friends might suggest fraud!!!

  14. Ho ho ho , and merry Christmas David, can’t knock you here and your comparisons.
    My hope for the next decade is with time we will turn this Country around , now we have the Elite fighting amongst them selves , they have to be nervous now.
    Just look at RTE this bunch of over paid commentators and they bring out this Prime Time show and show the disloyalty of us going over the Boarder to shop !.
    You and the other ‘celebrity Angry Men ( O Toole, Cooper, Ross and Browne ) have to take the stance and challenge your Media paymasters to continue showing what a rotten, corrupt dishonest, hypocritical, drunk, spineless nation we have developed into.
    I have read your book and did like The Drug Dealer comparison , but it’s only valid to a degree , I know a few of these Men here and in Holland and they are more clued in than Any Banker I have every dealt with, the big difference with the professions , when a consignment of ‘Drugs’ goes missing ( which effects the balance sheet ) , the Drug Dealer does not commission an report which is not acted on , no they deal with it take the loss and Punish those who had not delivered.
    We need a Few Hard Men to run this country for sure …

  15. AndrewGMooney

    Dear Professor Honihan.

    You recently said:

    ‘I don’t want to close without mentioning consumer protection. The worst aspects of this, such as out-of-control loan originators pushing unaffordable sub-prime mortgages, seem not to have been as widespread an issue in Ireland as it was in the UK or of course in the US’.

    http://www.tcd.ie/Economics/staff/phonohan/Glenties.pdf

    I think you’re missing The Big Issue, Professor Honihan. Allow me to explain it succinctly:

    The whole Irish residential property market was sub-prime. Not only did the Irish banking scammers originate and distribute 10 x income to value loans en masse, they did so against the backdrop of a massive building boom / stock oversupply situation. Ghost villages, etc. As did Spain, Florida, Nevada and the Neverland nonsense that was The Inland Empire in California.

    Key point: Britian has a house price boom but not a house-building boom.

    Hence the madness of ‘An Englishman’s Home Is His/Her Castle’ is getting up off the ropes. Prices are recovering under the central bank witchcraft that is Quantative Easing in a dodgy currency. The embittered Euro hordes trapped in the Channel Tunnel aren’t just looking for trinkets and baubles for the Xmas tree, they’re looking for dirt-cheap flats in Holland Park, Brixton, Islington and Notting Hill. And Irish nurses are looking for flats in Leytonstone to resume works at Whipps Cross Hospital. Thanks Ms Harney. Well done! Unlike Irish people, these Euro Refusenik-Refugees can cross reference land sale prices at the UK Land Registry against Agent Valuations and Agreed Sales Prices. Hence, the house price nonsense resumes. Unless the Tory Titanic sets sail….

    You need to set out how, without Irish QE, your version of Nama or Nama 2.0 helps will retrospective ‘consumer protection’, given the need to ‘compete’ with German labour and production costs. How can those costs go down alongside wages, yet NAMA 1.0 or 2.0 achieve ‘consumer protection’ never mind the 10% uplift predicated as the break-even, get out of jail target? How can the victims of The Irish Sub-Prime Celtic Tiger debacle be rescued? By bankrupting a generation? Or ‘sharing the pain’ across the Nation, across generations?

    The Irish house price ‘miracle’ was built on delusional magical thinking resulting from the pantomime called ‘The Cetic Christmas Tiger With A Twist In Its’ Tail’. Santa doesn’t come everyday for 15 years, no matter how many people in Ireland were pereptually drunk singing along to Roy Woods’ classic, praising the The Wizard Of Oz aka: Alan Greenspan, disguised as Santa Bertie Ahern.

    Didn’t they realise as they watched this pantomime unfold that there might be a wizened old man behind the curtains? That there was no Quant ‘magic’? I tried to raise the alarm with those Irish folk dear to me at 4 weddings and a funeral, etc. But it was just ‘begrudgery’ from a Plastic Paddy embittered Brit cunt / Saxon foe. Whatever. Shakespearian ‘Fool’ more like…..

    ‘When the snowman brings the snow. Well he just might like to know. He’s put a great big smile, on somebody’s face. If you jump into your bed. Quickly cover up your head. Don’t you lock the doors. You know that sweet Santa Claus in on the way
    Well I wish it could be Christmas, every day. When the kids start singing and the band begins to play. Oh, I wish it could be Christmas, every day. Let the bells ring out for Christmas’

    Here’s Santa Bertie Ahern on Top Of The Pops. Notice the first image of this video is of a cash-register kerching! It would be Sterling in that till, of course. *rollseyes*

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-r8UVR9DDBo

    Why did Ireland adolpt Roy Wood’s Xmas classic as it’s National Anthem from 1999 to 2008? The music has stopped, the chairs are re-arranged, and there’s an iceberg looming in the mists of beckoning 2010.

    I’m writing these ‘diatribes’ because real Irish people ask me to. Not delusional drunks in green jerseys thinking it’s Xmas/Paddy’s day all day, every day. It’s not. Civilization Projects are hard work. Time to sober up. Time to get with The Project v2.0, Paddy. Or face The Wrath Of ‘Prince’ Alastair Sun Tzu Mooney @ 20:12, 20/12, 2012………

    “Fe, Fi, Fo, Fum: I smell the blood of an ‘Englishman”

  16. Malcolm McClure

    Bloomsberg has a grim Christmas message for us:

    The survival of Irish banks is threatened by a wave of mortgage losses, as house prices slump and unemployment surges, according to Morgan Kelly, an economics professor dubbed the country’s “Doctor Doom.”

    Some 3.3 percent of Irish mortgage borrowers were at least 90 days behind in their repayments at the end of September, more than double the share in June 2008, the country’s Financial Regulator said yesterday.

    “The Irish banks remain as zombies whose only priority is to reduce their debt, and who face complete destruction from mortgage losses,” said Kelly, a professor at University College Dublin, in a research paper dated Dec. 21. “The Irish state can do nothing but watch as the second wave of the mortgage defaults sweeps in and drowns them.”

    http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20602062&sid=a7S1fOLlA8Ag

    Dr. Doom might have waited a few days to cheer us up.

  17. Billy Holiday Sings The Blues –

    The Blue Moon Epitaph is yet to finish and her final Great PULL is beginning tomorrow to finish on the 1st January 2010.
    Bad Weather, Church Resignations, Floods, Revelations ,and much more will follow as soon as it had begun on the 1st of dec until then.And if our CB Regulator of all regulators is a scorpio he will not be as quiet as you might expect during this season.Intensity of purpose might be the key to understanding what happens next.Also no one can swim against the tide neither can they swim directly across the tidal river .So where do they go except only down the river and to a sink hole.

  18. Tim

    Folks, I have been wondering about this article since it appeared and it struck me that I have been wondering about the potential inquiry since I heard that Honohan called for one. I have an abiding, lingering, sense of unease about it.

    That sense of unease was compounded by Monday night’s “PrimeTime Investigates” show, when a whole load of information was delivered to us a “new”. Information that has appeared in David’s articles in the last 18 months, in his book and on this site from contributors gleaning information from media sources worldwide, (as well as in other books, such as “Banksters”, “Ship of Fools”, etc. and columnists such as Gene Kerrigan and Shane Ross) is now being presented as “new”.

    I got caught in something of an argument with Mark Coughlan about this on Monday night; he claims that the fact that the Regulator knew, but failed to act, is new information. I said it is not new, that we have known it for a long time; that I reckon that show should have aired 13 months ago (I think he is very annoyed with me, for that suggestion).

    We learned all of the “Good man, Willie!” stories last year; we read Kerrigan’s revealing article where he bluntly stated, “Seanie Fitzpatrick is a sneaky little bastard.” We learned about the INIB problem, in depth, from Deco and others, here. “Fingers” and his fiefdom, the “Golden Ten”, Sean Quinn and the fact that Ulick McEvaddy was one of the first “Ten” called, but did not answer; all of it.

    Yet, now, this is presented as “new”, and McEvaddy is on “The Frontline” and radio shows, pontificating to us about sharing the pain and how the public-service is to blame for it all.

    Why do we need an inquiry to discover what we already know? I have no doubt that DMcW could write the report that the inquiry would produce and he could write it tonight. Many contributors here could write an accurate report too, I am sure.

    So, why are we being led, approximately 13 months too late, down this path of an inquiry, with dollops of political drama and intrigue thrown-in about Cowen trying to avoid one because it will point the finger at him, Honohan being painted as the White Knight and Lenihan’s appointee; Michael Soden (Former BoI CEO and expert in ahem — “Online Entertainment”) agreeing with him? It has been suggested to me that the primetime show was made, with the “whistle-blower” named Olivia from Fingleton’s bank, in order to prejudice both the proposed inquiry and the ongoing Garda investigation into ANGLO. It is possible. Remember the prejudicial favour (disguised as a media “hanging”) that Harney did for CJH, some years ago, that killed his trial in the High Court?

    I am trying to remain level-headed and even-handed about all of this; yet, I have this niggling impression that the combined primetime show, the call for an inquiry and the timing of both, coupled with the Cowen statements, all constitute a carefully choreographed appeasement-technique for the sheeple. I also wonder if there is something that we know, but shouldn’t and an “Official Inquiry” could give the sheeple a “definitive” report that would discredit whatever that wily piece of knowledge is that we are not supposed to have.

    Merry Christmas to all here.

  19. Tim

    Oh, and I found this, for those of you who would like something “uplifting” for Christmas – it is about overcoming adversity:

    http://ow.ly/OYlH

    … enjoy and Be Inspired.

  20. Tim – long may The Pull inspire you in the Blue Moments you have now.Absorb ….absorb….absorb….and all we reveal to you .

  21. Tim

    Ooh! Now, look here:

    http://thestory.ie/2009/12/23/michael-fingleton-inbs-and-mespil/

    …. and the plot thickens…..

    (John ALLEN, thanks.)

    • wills

      tim -

      this is a devastating link, it leads to a window into the gilded elites on a wink and a nod special all access pass insider set up.

  22. Tim

    “Mespil” is a reasonable metaphor for who is ruling Ireland; the banker, the politician, the business-leader and the broadcaster, all with appartments together in D4.

    There you have it!

    • Deco

      Tim – I looked at the Mespil Link. You hear all these rumours about nepotism, cronyism, networks, D4, golfing, etc….But this has more shocking than anything I even seen before.

      • Tim

        Deco, everyone should read that; please tell evryone you know/ post it to every network that you know.

        Gavin Sheridan is ferretting-away, on behalf of all of us, with his FoI applications and true, “digging” journalism.

        If you can (and I have), please contribute to his campaign by donating on the site.

        His campaign is, ironically through the FoI process, our best chance of getting the cost of FoIs reduced.

        This is something that every citizen has an interest in. Why should it cost so much money to find out how we are ruled?

  23. AndrewGMooney

    “Bank regulation is more difficult than most people think. I never believed that regulators or bank managements understood things that you would need a degree in higher mathematics to understand.” Charlie McCreevy.

    Is that so, Charlie? That being the case, did it never occur to you to counsel caution on that fateful night in September 2008? You knew Brian had a law degree, not one in higher maths. Did you meet Lenihan over oven-roasted garlic cloves and aoili as well to sound the plan out? Did you ask about ‘due diligence’? Of course I already know the answers to all these questions. Poor Brian. No wonder the nightmares about ‘vampires’ when I met him at B’ham Airport at dawn next day…

    ‘European governments have spent €3.7trn shoring up banks since the collapse of Lehman Brothers, according to European Union data.’

    That’s what happens when you double-cross me, I mean Alastair Darling! You surely knew that? You’d heard the rumours about the real ‘Prince’ Of Darkness, but you thought you could contain him:

    ‘Unfortunately, in recent weeks, gold-plated transparency rules stood in the way of the quiet resolution of a problem before it became a crisis. The result was that transparency rules that were intended to underpin investor confidence, when put to the test, actually promoted investor panic.Panic that culminated in a bank run – averted only by a central bank lifeboat which in turn spread moral hazard throughout the system. Clearly, transparency that culminates in panic, followed by a rescue, followed by the proliferation of moral hazard, is transparency that we would be better off without,’

    Thanks for those words, Charlie. So – no ‘maths’ and no ‘transparency’. Just what then, exactly? Trust? ‘My word is my bond’ as they used to say in the City of London till they were exposed to the light?
    Lenihan gains no ‘credit’ for placing the Depfa Bomb back in Berlin. It was pure luck rather than judgement. Darling told Paulson he’d rather not import America’s ‘cancer’, thereby giving notice that the ‘New World Order’ is not going to be a cakewalk for the Yanks. Or the Germans. Chinese. Gulf States…. Who ‘blew up’ Dubai World?…Or is this just a paranoid conspiracy theory, a ‘meme’ generated by Alastair himself? LOL!

    http://www.webofdebt.com/articles/economic9-11.php

    Here’s an early XXXmas present for you Charlie, so assume the position cuz you’re gonna be grin-fcuked good and proper. No lube. Germany has not forgotten Depfa. America has not forgotten Lehmans. And, most importantly: Alastair has certainly not forgotten his ‘baptism of fire’ over Northern Rock. When the ‘Codename Google’ bombs go off in the I.F.S.C, we’ll see if Honohan really has a pair of balls, or whether the de facto victim script of “it must be The Brits!” is trotted out again. A convenient smokescreen to avoid scrutiny of the real ‘players’ in this denouement.
    Still got that photo of Greenspan over your bed to jack off to? *smirks* What’s with this E.C.B shite anyway? European ‘Central’ Bank, shouldn’t it be the T.E.B? The Trans-Europe Bank, linking the financial organs of Europa with the lifeblood of credit pumping through its’ arteries? Here’s Athanasios Orphanides, another ECB clone / droid like Lenihan:

    “We have avoided the threat of deflation which, you will recall, was a major concern a year or so ago. I now think we face a much smaller threat of deflation.

    Maybe in Cyprus, Athanasios…..but let’s have another quote from you:

    “With that in mind, I agree that over the past year or so we have observed a decline in core inflation…we need to watch this very carefully….such a deviation would risk de-anchoring inflation expectations on the downside…..Indeed we need considerable growth in order to avoid the other risk — of inflation continuing to undershoot our price stability objective.”

    Athanasios, if you’ve avoided the threat of deflation, why is there still a risk? Still worshipping at Greenspan’s collapsed temple over there in Cyprus? Meanwhile Ireland is being crucified on a cross. On a new gold standard of ‘price stability at all costs’. The UK / USA have no intentions of being dragged into The Vortex. I cannot fathom why ‘Ireland’ jumped feet first….Athanasios finally pulls the trigger and blows his brains out:

    “We are in Frankfurt today talking about the European economy. A few minutes ago we were talking about ECB policy… We don’t really talk about the nationality of the people taking decisions.”

    Leninhan. Honohan. ‘Ireland’: All rendered superfluous and irrelevant by the need to feed The Greater God Of Germanic Monetary Paranoia.

    Merry Xmas, Mr McCreevy! Will you be spending it at your ‘controversially funded’ K-Club apartment. We’ll talk again in 2010. It’s payback time. Alastair will be thinking of you at Hogmanay….Auld Lang Syne….etc. He’s reviewing ‘property purchasing patterns in Portuguese golf clubs’ over the Xmas break *guffaws*…You couldn’t make this up!

    Adam Smith 2.0 / Web 3.0 aka:
    Mad Paddy From Brum aka:
    ‘Prince’ Alastair Sun Tzu Mooney
    Celtic Blood, Saxon Heart,
    20:12, 20/12, 2012, etc

    “I’ve been dreaming of a time when the Irish are sick to death of Fianna Fail and Fine Gael and spit upon their names, alongside Cromwells. And denounce The Tribal Mind that still salutes them. Will they salute them: Forever?”

    • AndrewGMooney

      Oh, and a final Xmas special greeting to Roy Keane: Find another match-day bolt-hole. ‘The Saipan Incident At The Potcheen Still’. Don’t ever address me like that again. Diss me in public? Morrissey was right about you. You are a Loser.I’m not. You were lucky to get out of there alive……

      http://irelandsworld.com/index.php/component/option,com_rsgallery2/Itemid,52/gid,14/page,slideshow/

      Andrew Gerard George Mooney
      Aindriú Gearóid Saoirse-Seoirse Ó Maonaigh.

      First Taoiseach of The Second Irish Republic.
      Instigator of: ‘The 2012 – 2016 Uprising / Uplifting / Singularity Event’.

      Notes on naming etymology: Manly. Brave with a Spear. Freedom-Farmer. Wealthy and / or Dumb [Mad Paddy From Brum]. The Sacrament of Confirmation added George as ‘The Dragon Slayer’ and ‘Freedom’: St Andrew, St Patrick & St George of Attanagh, Sparkhill & Small Heath. The Un(Holy) Trinity of The Birmingham 666 Black Sabbath Apocalypse. The Annointed One. Christ Re-Crucified. Orchestrator of Miracles. As propesied by The Maya. 20:12, 20/12, 2012, etc, and so on and so forth…

      Holy Mother of Mary! Anyone would think I was on drugs writing this…..*rollseyes* Actually, I’m researching a series on ‘The Irish In Britain’ for some contacts at the BBC. Budgets are tight, but I’ve done the ‘lift pitch’, hoping to get it green-lighted early next year. Roll on 2010!

    • Andrew we await with bated (baited?) breath your HogMoney comments with or w/o web 3.0 servo assist.
      Mind how you go!

  24. Deco

    David. Another excellent article. A step back in the era when Ireland was not controlled by Maynooth (The oligopolists and big swingers in the K-Club) but Maynooth (the bishops in conference).

    I read Noel Browne’s book “Against the Tide” when I was in the CBS secondary school. The amazing thing was that the general practitioners managed to scupper the thing purely because they could not control it. The Hierarchy agreed in principle to an FF version of the same thing. But Browne’s proposal had the ‘wrong’ structure. He was not giving enough consideration to the doctors or the bishops. The plan would make the the doctors work too hard for their money. At that time the senior figures in the Church and senior figures in the medical profession were nearly all related. It was impossible to fix either.

    The medical profession were quite shrewd in the way that they managed to avoid any critique. Of course such figures as Archbishop McQuaid had no qualms about finding enemies and destroying them.

    Honahan is an excellent public servant. He asks the correct questions. For example he asked if there could be an analysis of the social factors behind the boom-bust. Now this is a sacred cow. Our advertising sponsors would not like that. It is like as if the population needs to reduce social pressures, and the need to conform in Irish society.

    Therefore we must find ways of supporting Honahan. By texting messages to radio shows in support of him, and against the vested interests that he is trying to quell.

    The thing is that the vast majority of the citizenry, right across all political persuasions and none, are really really annoyed with the banking hierarchies. The population are sick of the entire NAMA, bailout the bankers, Fingers in the pie nonsense.

    WE DEMAND REFORM.

  25. Deco

    David, the team that supports David, and fellow posters, all of whom I have enjoyed this past year, I wish you all

    A very HAPPY Christmas to you, your families, and to all those that are important to you.

  26. Deco

    AIB had their EGM today. AIB are potentially a massive headache for the taxpayer. Again. AIB need to be completely reformed.

    The Irish concept of management has failed. It needs to be reformed/replaced. The motives and the behaviours of people holding authority in Ireland is the source of all of our problems.

    Let’s keep mentioning this, so that it will be reformed.

    • wills

      Deco -

      If we collate this weeks proceedings par excellence we arrive at the following:

      1) A meeja lead narrative on a potential push for a public enquiry into banking malpractice spurned on by 2), churned on by primetime dec 22.

      2) A voice from CB head office calling for a public enquiry into banking malpractice.

      3) A number of character players in public office supporting the CB chief call for a public enquiry into banking malpractice, including the likes of gormley who sold out to NAMA.

      As tim rightfully posts, why not any of this stuff 13 months ago?!!

      Then we get AIB EGM central to which was sale on of horrible POnzi toxic loan crude too NAMA for bonds, an EGM on today.

      Looking like once again the insiders are doing a ‘dennis the menace’ look over there look over there number to keep the track clear as Banks do their fake EGM motion passed thingy on NAMA without attracting too much attention one way or the other from any one in particular.

      The sheeple are pacified with this meeja spin calling for public enquries and the banks under the cover of pacification are motion passing NAMA and thieving sovereign bonds from the taxpayer and throwing out the back of their bankster casino gambling debts and finally hot tailing it over too ECB too swap bonds for freshly minted euros in the billions.

      Meanwhile the sheeple are sleep walking too work mis directed by a sense of engineered comfort that a public enquiry is on the way which will straighten out all these banking crooks.

      Looking at the AIB EGM to day it strikes one that the whole honohan call for a public enquiry is mock staging mass opinion on bankers into a nullified state for christmas, which, as malcolm posted above to me, is, for all to wish it all away so we can stop the worrying and go back to things as if all is really ok.

  27. Cooney

    Well said David. We are now getting to the nub of the issue. The country needs to rid itself of the cancer of the last 10 years, it needs people like you to band together and force the hand of the so-called mandarins, and make them accountable for their deception. This country could teach Zimbabwe a thing or two about raping its own – these people, those at the top, in the banks, government, dept of finance, regulator, and the developers need to be made to pay for their corruption and greed. On top of this, and correcting the fiscal situation, it is high time solid plans were developed to create a REAL economy again, and FAST. We will have Five Hundred Thousand people out of work by end 2010 – how long is it going to take to get these people back to work? (Answer : they will never all get back to work !) Does anyone in power care? Sure as heck doesn’t seem like it to me!

    • Tim

      Cooney, the elite wants more people out of work: the more unemployed, the greater downward-pressure on wages, the greater upward-pressure on emigration = problem-solved, for “the MAN”.

  28. Tim

    Folks, this is the new working paper by Morgan Kelly (the one that Malcolm McLure’s Bloomberg link above refers to):

    http://www.ucd.ie/t4cms/wp09.32.pdf

    I suggest that you allow your breakfast to settle before reading it.

    • wills

      Excellent link, tim.
      Forensic facts we are looking for, stacked up, pieced together, put on the table, the truth, told exactly for what it is, pure and simple.

      Lay’s it all out going into the next decade, a year early, and clearing the racks for a new game in town where the truth gets it’s say and has its day.

      I am ready.

      All quiet on set, annnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnd, aaactioooon !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • Malcolm McClure

      Tim and Wills: If you are still seeking the ultimate cause of this mess, Prof. Kelly’s footnote on page 24 says it all:
      “24This is not to deny that Irish banks may have exerted more direct means to control the political process but, until Irish members of parliament have to declare their liabilities as well as their assets, it is not possible to establish how many leading politicians received large, interest free loans from two banks.”
      Constitutional treason?

      • Or breach of Article 45 principles of social policy??

      • Tim

        Malcolm McClure, true; I have been told by a Solicitor-contact of mine that, from his own research, at least 85 TDs have “extensive property portfolios”, investments in bank-shares, etc.

        Of course, for starters, we have this April 2007 article listing some of the property-gamblers in the Oireachtas:

        http://www.independent.ie/business/irish/tds-in-rush-to-snap-up-property-124007.html

        It hints at much bigger things, in hindsight.

        • Malcolm McClure

          Tim: Several TD investors on this list must now be essentially bankrupt. I understand that bankrupts are not eligible to hold public office, so this could suggest a way to bring about a long-overdue election. Perhaps your solicitor contact could indicate how this might be brought about.

          On p24, Prof. Kelly says “(Given) …the small size of the country, which ensures that politicians and financiers are inevitably well known to each other, it is easy to become ‘too connected to fail’.”

          THere must be a constitutional remedy for this state of affairs.

        • Tim ….Happy Christmas , do you know we may just have a few TD’s here on bankruptcy , brilliant link.
          Enjoy your day with your Family tomorrow . I will be helping deliver dinners to those who are trapped by these gangsters , …let’s get rid of them in 2010

          • Tim

            BrendanW and Malcolm McClure, yes I believe that, under normal circumstances, these would be bankrupt; however, my strong suspicion is that through the auspices of NAMA, these people’s loans will be considered “off-balance-sheet”, just as the money for NAMA itself is, for ECB purposes.

            The “opposition” parties will not oppose it, either, since many of them are in the same boat – there are 2 FGs in the top-five property portfolios, don’t forget and Richard Bruton’s money was almost all invested in banking shares in ANGLO and AIB, among others! How much has he lost, I wonder? If his and other FG and LAB members’ losses are as high as one might reasonably expect, it is then unreasonable to expect effective opposition from them.

            So, in short, we are back to the “Democratic Defecit” that I have mentioned before and I am betting that there will be no bankrupcies in the Oireachtas (except the moral kind that is already known about).

            Let’s keep at it!

            Many Happy-returns, BrendanW and a very Happy Christmas to all of you other contributors here, as well as to David and Ronan.

      • wills

        Malcolm -

        All our efforts on here, and what a brilliant end of the year present for all of us. Thank you Morgan Kelly.

        And guys, may i wish you all, tim, deco, malcolm, and furry and G, and of course David, John Allen, dilly, everyone to all bloggers on here, wishing you all good tidings and good days ahead for all come new year!!

  29. Regulating What ?
    I remember in the 90′s I wrote to the Central Bank complaining of a Crime at Bank of Ireland .Their response was it was none of their business because the CB is only concerned with ‘bank prudence’ only and my complaint did not come within their remit.We now know since how good they were at remiting between themselves.
    I persevered to have a meeting with the appropriate supervisor to give him my raw nerve and this was granted. When I arrived I was met in a board room by a ‘posy of girls’ who frankly had nothing worthwhile between their ears .I was told that the supervisor was unavailable.I made it known to them my disgust and their bank’s unjust behaviour .I might as well have been saying that to bunnies in Stringfellows.
    This bank has been prostituting itself as protecting the well being of The Irish Nation for too long when in reality it was an IMPOSTER .

  30. tony_murphy

    Yet another excellent Article David.

    I hope you are right about Patrick Honohan.

    I have to admit I have some doubts as I guess he was appointed by Lenihan. His calls for an investigation probably suits Lenihan. It might help get rid of Cowen. Which has to be a good thing – unless he is replaced by Lenihan. I will never forget that he forced NAMA on Ireland.

    I have just started reading “Nineteen Eighty-Four” by George Orwell. I have just finished the introduction and read first paragraph – wow, recommended reading

    Happy Christmas and New Year to everyone.

    2010 is year of Tiger I believe

  31. A humdinger of an article followed by some of the best posts to date.
    Can’t dally due to Christmas obligations.
    Well done on all the analysis in a cathartic year.
    I’m looking forward to blowing the lid off all this crookery next year with David and Prof Kelly chairing a board of Enquiry.
    We need these “dangerous voices” so Happy Christmas one and all.
    Nollaig Shona.
    F

  32. Desert Storm –
    The World has lost it’s paradigm and worse still it has no replacement and worse again it has no dream. All it can muster is a ‘whisper of surviving’ .There is no cohesiveness between nations and no care to want it .Too much wind is liken to excess internet and mobile telecommunication and ‘no contact’ as we remembered it to be in a world gone by.We are in ‘ Air Bland Talk World’ where whispers are only whispers and then disapear to a nothingness .Where divorce is a ‘ three click on a mobile phone’ and to be no more until the next encounter.
    To interpret the above to our local needs read the following:

    Brian Lenihan is an Air Sign – Gemini ; and
    Bacon is an Air Sign – Aquarius ;
    Honohan – could be an Air Sign ( Libra ) .

    If ‘H’ is an air sign then we are in a ‘Sound Bite Nation of Looney Tunes’ and it just becomes worse.Welcome to Desert Storm.

  33. Colin_in_exile

    David,

    Merry Christmas, great article, and hope you continue on this journey for truth and justice with us all here throughout 2010.

    Season’s greetings to all posters here, and let’s hope for a prosperous 2010, which may seem unlikely at the moment, but we must continue to hope for a better future and a better government.

  34. Mark

    Great comments and great article. However, there is a common theme of exasperation that what seems obvious to the author and multiple contributors, namely that the country has been destroyed for generations to come by a bunch of conmen in government, banks, media and property development, is not obvious to the population at large. If it was, we’d all be up in arms about it, wouldn’t we?

    The reason is the people literally do not understand what has happened. They have been baffled, blinded and battered by a never-ending stream of self-serving, partisan, half-assed, piecemeal assessments and endless pointless, nitpicking debates to the point of stupefication.

    Granted, there is lots of literature appearing now but who do you believe, who is right and who can explain it in simple terms that everyone can understand?

    People understand simple things ie when they have less money in their pockets, but they are easily bored and/or confused by economics and finance – Ever had to listen to a consultant surgeon give you a technical medical explanation for your illness? Same thing here.

    Additionally, much of the published material is compromised because of the associated agendas/ motives of the authors, much of it is downright wrong, loads of it is badly written, and all of it confuses and turns off the population….
    This sounds bad but most ordinary people have no notion what a ‘billion’ is……1 billion, 10 billion, 100 billion, 1 million, huh? If people cannot comprehend this, what hope is there of understanding the intricacies of the mess the country is in?
    The government and their cronies simply needed to spin a web of simplistic propaganda, cause a schism in the population, then sit back and watch the ensuing chaos, while they make off with the loot !Blame the public service paybill and the “leeches” on social welfare ! Boom ! Job Done – “they’ll be fighting each other for years – anyone for champagne lads – way hay !!”

    Bottom line here is the people need to know and understand the TRUTH, the whole TRUTH and nothing but the TRUTH. Easier said than done, but if it ain’t done, the conmen will be long gone by the time we do figure out, and we’ll be the ones without a chair when the music stops. That’s what these criminals are planning, and, guess what? They are succeeding !!

    • Tim

      Mark, well said.

      Please keep posting, here, and adding to the information that we glean.

    • Mark , seasons greetings to you and a good post, The Truth is our national Media all have pay masters and they can only tell so much Truth without up setting those who give them Marketing Money , your right there is nothing simplistic about this web been spun a lot of money is spent on it and there is nothing we have done about it .
      Now though across this Country a lot more people are taking an interest in both the Politics and Economics of this place we call our home.
      All we can hope for over the next few years is these players will feel the ground roots pressure , if we are not spending, not working, and not borrowing from these bankers , You will see Change , while right now our current bunch of Politicians both left and right in power are influenced by the trappings attached to their positions. We need New Blood , we Know there is a better way and if We All come together ,..of Course we can Make Ireland a more Honest Country to live in.

  35. paulmcd

    David, I would have strong suspicions in relation to Honohan’s “enquiry”. Let us not forget that Honohan has called for lifting of the cap on bankers’ pay.

    http://businessandleadership.com/news/article/17680/leadership/lift-bank-ceo-salary-cap

    Reading that the 500,000 euros cap (30% greater cap than limit applied to bankers in the United States who are managing institutions 100 times the size of our largest banks) does not include pension contributions is all the more astonishing when you reflect on the fact that there are massive deficits on bank employee pension contribution schemes; in the case of Bank of Ireland, this amounts to 100,000 for every one of their c. 15,000 employees.

    I have been reading some of the links which contributors to this site have provided to the research below:

    Peter Mathews http://bankermathews.com/nama-whats-wrong/

    Constantin Gurdgiev http://trueeconomics.blogspot.com/

    Morgan Kelly. http://www.ucd.ie/t4cms/wp09.32.pdf

    In addition I have read a report at the following link: http://www.independent.ie/national-news/taxpayer-foots-836410m-pay-bill-for-special-advisers-1982502.html

    The two Brians have each their own academic economist to give advice and these 2 economists are together costing the State c. 350,000 euros.

    In the coming year massive amounts of our taxes are going to be used in the NAMA (mis)adventure. Constantin Gurdkiev estimates: “ The total bill for this bogus ‘rescuing’ of the Irish banking system is likely to be in the neighbourhood of €29-40 billion”, ie a minimum of 29 thousand and up to 40 thousand euros for every Irish household.

    I would like to see an IMMEDIATE ENQUIRY on the likely SHAPE OF EVENTS FOR THE FUTURE, before we haul the likes of “Two-Fingers” Fingleton before courts of law:

    Peter Clinch and Alan Aherne, as economic advisors to the Government, should be brought before the enquiry to determine their exact position vis-à-vis experts like David, and the others I have listed above. It is impossible for me to believe that these “advisers” support NAMA and they should be made accountable for the advice they are giving. Better still I would love to see them step aside to deny their masters’ shenanigans.

    To conclude, I have written to the Central Bank, at addresses given below, on two occasions, in November and December, with the following request but with no response to date. I made the request with awareness of the fact that Honohan’s counterpart in Israel took a 90% cut in salary when leaving Goldman Sachs and is earning only 140,000 dollars per annum:

    mgtboard @ centralbank.ie
    patrick.honohan @ centralbank.ie

    “I am researching the salaries of senior civil servants and would be grateful if you could inform me if the information I presently have for the Governor, below, is correct. Thank you. Paul McD
    ________________________________

    The salary for the Governor of the Central Bank in Ireland is €348,000 (= $500,000+ in late 09 — even though he/she no longer has control over monetary policy)while Ben Bernanke, the Central Banker with the greatest responsibilities, gets $180,000 as Chairman of the Fed.”

  36. Fergal73

    There are no investigations in Ireland! We do tribunals and oireacteas investigations, ensuring that punishments for the guilty are minimal.
    CJH got a state funeral. The electorate re-elected Lowry, the Flynns and Bertie!

    The regulator of our banking system retired on a full pension after overseeing the near financial collapse of the state. The Indo reported today on a civil ‘servant’ who sold state data to third parties whose ‘punishment’ was two year’s suspension on full pay followed by a full pension! No investigation took place.

    We have had the state’s police force threaten to break the law they are employed to protect and there have been no public sector resignations. Minister Ahern didn’t even ask for the resignation of the senior Garda Representative Association involved.

    The only positive thing that can be said is that ethos of corruption and ineptidude is tolerated at all levels of the Irish state. It is not a case of one law for the few, another for the many, rather it is a case of a nod and a wink for the few and a single upraised finger to the many.

    I’d love to come back to Ireland for more than a visit, but as long as the culture remains as it is, I’d rather take my chances where the rule of law appears to more commonly abided by than broken.

    If the culture doesn’t change (criminal investigations, prosecutions, jail-time and financial penalties) – emigrate.

    • wills

      Fergal73 -

      happy christmas to you.

      I disagree.

      It is not tolerated at all levels.

      I know many many many multitudes of friends and family who certainly do not tolerate the sheer whole sale endemic crony nod and wink special access pass we are all now aware on, as the rest of the world.

      I know vast amount of people who are utterly reviled by ‘some’ of their fellow supposed country men who must be brought too book.

  37. Merry Christmas to you and your families. Just testing a new computer and surfed to dmcw’s page. Sure where else would ya go on Christmas day :)

  38. Big Willie

    This country for the last 1300 years has been built on one upmanship and keeping the littleman down THE BRITS THROUGH OPPRESSION, THE CATHOLIC CHURCH THROUGH REPRESSION, AND NOW THE BANKERS THROUGH ECONOMIC DEPRESSION.
    Those of us who were lucky enough to get an education escaped the financial and social repression thrrough the advantages that education gave, some of us worked our way out through honest toil and the odd nixer, and then there were those who had the idea for the next bigthing and leveraged to accumalate and expand; nearly all have been damaged by this barbaric plundering of personal wealth and dreams of working of ordinary folk, their pensions decimated, savingds diverted to shareholdings wiped out and buisneses destroyed by THE SONS OF BITCHES,CHILDREN OF THE BASTARDS OF THE LAST 1300 YEARS.
    If things dont change in the next year and that is solids changes that have a solid foundation, if not social disobedience will be the order of the day, Fingleton et al remember Romania.

  39. Tim

    Folks, just had our Christmas dinner with the out-laws.

    Mark, above is right. People are bamboozled. My father-in-law isa good man, 70 yrs old, still working and fit. He spent 40 or so years working for the Jury’s-Doyle hotel group. He is pretty clued-in. But even he feels confused; he knows the basics, that something is wrong; that the bankers/politicians/media/IBEC are scrambling to protect themselves; that corruption is rife in these circles; that the government and media are fooling people – he can see that the news and the reality “just don’t add-up”.

    But he is confused about the details, unsure who to trust. He asked me many questions about what I think about it all (Huh! BIG mistake, Liam! Lol).

    Throughout the conversation, the one thing he said he felt sure of was this:

    “David McWilliams is good, Tim. I think he tells it like it is and he writes articles in the newspaper that seem more in touch with reality than alot of the others.”

    Well, I directed him to come here.

    David, thanks again for being a light in the darkness.

    Let’s keep at it.

    • Happy Holidays Tim,…went home this year for the dinner and no fights a great day , was chatting with my sister she is a secondary teacher and she told me the strike papers were sent out over two weeks before the first day of ‘strikes’ which included also the follow up days , she voted NO …but only 40% bothered to post the ballot back !…. This attitude Tim, you got to get them to change , if 60% don’t even return the papers how can a Union bring 100% out on Protest ?…
      We Have to get More and More Folk marking every paper and Tim ,..our Teachers should lead by example ……..oh what a battle we have !!

  40. Electorate Paradigm

    We need to change the existing one from ‘ turkeys voting for Christmas’.

  41. wills

    God.

    EXtraordinary.

    A people live among us, and they are all too ready willing and able, if giving the opportunity, too kill the society they come from, in order to make a quick buck too go on an ego trip.

    Extraordinary.

  42. Malcolm McClure

    Lenihan seems to be slowly building confidence in Ireland’s determination to survive this downturn. http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/ad2b3422-f000-11de-833d-00144feab49a.html

    In its latest quarterly economic bulletin, ESRI forecast that economic output, after plunging by a “huge” 7.25 per cent of GDP this year, will contract by a modest 0.25 per cent next year, as growth returns in the second half of 2010. But ESRI said that the unemployment rate, currently at 12.5 per cent, will continue to rise and peak at 14 per cent late next year.
    http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/fc747aec-ef20-11de-86c4-00144feab49a.html

  43. ERSI = every report selvishly incorrect

  44. Tim

    Folks, our neighbours in the UK are not at all happy about the cost of EU regulations:

    http://www.openeurope.org.uk/research/outofcontrol.pdf

  45. Tim

    Folks, pancreatic cancer does not have a good prognosis; it seems it is fatal within three years, in over 65% of cases.

    http://www.emedicinehealth.com/pancreatic_cancer/article_em.htm

  46. Micheal Martin must be preparing a heave against Cowen now.

  47. wills

    Posters -

    NAMA carries a ‘deathly’ curse.

  48. wills

    NAMA is a black toxic waste bin and will infect all that bring it into existence.

  49. we must not allow the primacy of opinion rise above our ideas

  50. wills

    Posters -

    The NAMA / Criminal banking syndicate arrangement on passing the gambling debt onto the taxpayer is now going up in price.

    10 BILLION euros more according to the Sunday Independant to day.

    The banks will be ‘required’ to take a further 10 billion more than originally calculated, take it from the taxpayer to off set the further erosion of asset POnzi values underwAY.

    More monies stolen from the people of Ireland going into the hands of private banking elites a few hundred of them per head count and the countries tax monies handed over too private banking criminal syndicates too pay for the gambling debts of a handful of crooks and shysters and traitors who are running this country into the gutter step by step by step.

    http://www.independent.ie/national-news/nama-plan-weeks-behind-schedule-1990153.html

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