November 16, 2011

We're at euro crossroads but every route looks grim

Posted in Irish Independent · 260 comments ·

In the past few days I have bumped into many people on the street who are so confused by what they are hearing and they want to know what happens next. I have no inside knowledge, but my instinct tells me that the EU can’t go on like this, limping from one crisis to another. Yesterday, the crisis became more acute with the financial markets selling the bonds of Italy, Spain and even France. This is what happens in crises, the contagion becomes too much and everyone is engulfed.

The financial markets are no angels in this story. Those who believe that the markets are not trying to make money betting against the European elite are naive. In fact, any solution to this mess must have an element of capital controls embedded in it to control the excesses of the markets. It is simply not sustainable to have hedge fund managers in Greenwich Connecticut, who only pay 15% of their income in tax to the US government, dictating what happens in Europe – particularly as many of these people couldn’t locate Berlin on a map.

However, it is crucial to accept that while the financial markets are no angels, they did not cause the crisis and up until recently were happy to finance the governments of Italy and Spain, as well as France.
Notwithstanding the power of the markets (which can be controlled), the core of the problem is an enormous inconsistency at the heart of the EU. This inconsistency centres on how the Euro works in 17 different countries.
The credibility of the Euro – as a functioning currency within which countries and people can go about their business and prosper – is now in tatters. And people are moving their deposits because they are petrified.
Angela Merkel says that if the Euro fails, Europe fails.

This doesn’t look like a fair assessment of today’s economic reality. In fact the opposite is the case. Preserving the Euro seems to demand that banks will be protected for their stupidity, while taxpayers will be billed. At the same time, borrowers in certain European countries who need credit have no assess to credit, while borrowers in other countries that don’t want credit, have all the credit they like. And it seems to involve one large game of pass the parcel where the bill for more and more individual and institutional debts are being passed onto more and more people who had nothing to do with the debt in the first place.

When you look at what happens to money within the Eurozone over the economic cycle, a worrying pattern emerges. At the heart of the Euro is a self-reinforcing negative dynamic, which amplifies booms and exacerbates busts. This is the nub of the issue. In good times, when perceptions of risk are small, too much money flows from the core countries to the peripheral countries via bank loans either to the governments of the periphery or the private sector of the periphery. This means that anything can be financed at the top of the boom with other people’s money. The Greeks built Olympic Stadiums and we built Ghost Estates. Now they both lie empty and the bill remains unpaid because there is no money around to pay for them.
But where has the money gone?

Back to the core is the answer. According to the ECB, €122 billion of private money has left Ireland since January 2008. This has gone back to the core, it is no longer here and that is the reason we can’t pay for anything; the money is all gone.

If you think about this movement of money using the basic rules of economics, you will see there is something wrong with the picture.
In basic economics, when there is a recession the demand for money falls. This is because you don’t go out to spend or to invest and therefore, your demand for money falls. This should lead to lots of surplus money sloshing around and thus the “availability” of money increases. Eventually, with all this money sloshing about, the banks begin to “throw money at people” and confidence emerges again, people begin to spend and the cycle kicks off again.

But what happens if the downturn in the periphery is matched by a flight of money out of that country? In this circumstance the “normal” rules of economics do not pertain. The flight of cash from periphery to core leads to less money or credit being available for the peripheral recovery and therefore the normal recovery stalls and stutters, before stagnating.
This is the structural fault in the Euro. To use a Bertism, the Euro makes “the boom boomier and the bust bustier”.
So what’s the way out? Obviously the way out is for the central bank of the Euro, the ECB, to prevent that cyclical flow of cash. But how would it do that?

It could do that by turning on the taps and buying up all the debt that is being held in peripheral banks, injecting liquidity and making sure that there is loads of money sloshing about. It can do this easily, after all it prints the stuff.

But we are not seeing that from the ECB. Instead we are being pushed either in the direction of fiscal union or bust. But fiscal union, without an active central bank, won’t fix the problem. And a messy implosion of the Euro would cause massive dislocation as savings are debased with huge social and emotional consequences.

So what is on the cards? Either we will see a big bang move to political union through another referendum or the Euro will split in two with the core moving towards greater union and the periphery, with a new weaker euro, taking more time.

The first will be almost impossible to achieve politically as referendums have a habit of slapping elites around the head. The second will be all but impossible to achieve technically because with 17 different countries and banking systems, the first sniff of a two-speed Europe will cause massive capital flight.

So we are stuck. Yesterday, we saw the beginning of a run on the French government as French bond yields spiked. This won’t end here.
Meanwhile, the leadership in Germany warns of the biggest threat since the 2nd World War, yet is doing nothing to halt this. And all the while the economies of the periphery grind to a halt. Something has to give and, without real political leadership, we are looking at chaos.

  1. transitionman

    Knowing that a train wreck is coming, and actually seeing it happen, are two very different things.

  2. A post democracy & post Euro look into the future

    Take a moment and think about the term ‘Poverty’.

    I guess we could agree that this can be described as a situation which

    Degrades human dignity
    Is a matter of human rights
    Should be of concern to everyone

    What are the levels of poverty, the grades and hoe do we define it, well there are official description, and as usual bureaucratic statisticians are used to describe the phenomenon and put it into perspective, but I would strongly appeal to our common sense to describe it in clearer terms.

    Professor Godfried Engbersen is Sociologist and wrote an interesting article back in 1999 in le monde diplomatique, dealing precisely with this question.

    Our people in Ireland, and many other countries today are living in subsistence poverty, where their standard of living excludes them from society on may grounds, from participation in cultural events to downright healthcare issues, the latter is an embarrassingly grave situation in Ireland.

    The DOHA talks were cancelled as a result of the last G20 meeting, and this was one of the most important results they came up with. It is testimony to the elitist club themselves and their moral and practical incompetence to deal with the major questions of our century.

    You may wonder why I write about this, and the explanation is quite simple, the policies applied since 2008 throughout Europe, and in particular in Ireland concerning the handling of this global heist by financial Taliban’s, and here especially Anglo Irish Bank needs to be put into the spotlight, they are the very reason for a major increase in impoverished people, in Ireland and across Europe.

    Now I need to make one thing clear, of course there is a difference to people who live in countries where lack of nutrition and access to clean water are the main reason for premature child deaths and poverty on a scale that can only be described as inhuman. The failure, and I would like to emphasize it, the deliberate years lasting failure of the DOHA talks are contributing directly to this situation, and at the same time, arms traders are making insane profits in the same countries, arms dealers from all countries!

    Herein lies the greatest hypocrisy of our century. They talked the talk, but never walked the walk.

    When we talk about poverty and its many phenomenon forms we are automatically confronted with the term inequality, the latter is a condition for poverty.

    Let’s stick to Ireland for a moment and realize that our personal health situation can be described as a matter of income differences. Our health system is increasingly on the decline due to mismanagement, incompetence and a massive dose of corruption in the system. People are being paid insane amounts of money for reports and papers, computer systems are introduced on advise from these very management consultants, systems that never worked, and so on, the list is endless.

    Drug and alcohol abuse is exorbitantly high, and on the increase. Child obesity, which in my personal view is child abuse, and adult obesity is on the increase, let alone the mental health of our nation, and it is not secret that the past three years of social economical government policies have contributed immensely to the increase of mental health problems amongst the population. I dare to say, the system is stretched to the maximum and the reality is that it is impossible for workers in the mental health system to allow for an efficient and adequate service.

    Last week I had a conversation with Prof. Michael Fitzgerald, Henry Marsh Professor of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at Trinity College, a leading capacity in Europe, and I learned that for example the entire County Donegal is served by two child psychiatrists in the public health service. That’s right, two child psychiatrists are dividing the entire county between them. According to the 2011 census Donegal has a population of 160,927.

    We are closing hospitals but pay back 1 billion US dollar to Anglo Irish Bondholder’s who made a windfall profit. I am sorry to repeat that, I am aware that everyone by now has heard about it, but it can’t be overstressed enough.

    The presence of the Troika, EU Commission-ECB-IMF, constitutes the presence of the global banking Mafia and EU fanatics in this country. The results are the increasing impoverishment of our people, families and their children, the theft of public assets and enforced austerity by forcing more debts on an already bankrupt country, and enforcing protracted defaults of banks to pay back bankers and investors in foreign countries. This is the quintessential essence and their proclaimed purpose of ring fencing contagion, as was expected, has failed to 100%. As David expressed in an earlier article, the mission was a complete failure, but, and this is important, the results of their activities are felt in nearly every family in this country, and they will get worse!

    While political puppets fight for survival, which explains the kicking of the can down the road of the past three years, the entire discussions on solutions is locked in by the totalitarian and undemocratic Frankfurt Group of Eight, backed by people like our very own perfect Prefect and now also enforced by the IMF receivership in Italy.

    Alternatives and very valid proposals, such as to issue Euro Bonds by converting a high percentage of GDP of every single Eurozone country to a common EU Bond that is issued by the ECB, followed by a forced recapitalization of Banks, breaking up the too big too fail into entities with no more than around 500 bn asset portfolios, and stimulate the economy by massive investment projects funded by the EIB, all these proposals are excluded form the discussion, marginalized, ridiculed and flagged as anti European or dangerous. Instead they force feed you with an instrument as toxic as the instruments that brought us into this mess, and it is already DOA, dead on arrival, the EFSF rip off.

    So what do you think? How will a post democratic Europe deal with this new poverty that is spread across Europe?

    Let me give you real life example of todays Kraut-Logic.

    German Jobcenter Initiatives, think FAS, just much bigger! The German ‘Bundestanstalt fuer Arbeit’ is the largest bureaucratic Institution in entire Europe, it is a blown out of proportion and utterly Kafkaesque Institution that defies belief.

    Now imagine clever ‘business-leaches’ that are making millions of profits from taxpayers money to create what they call Job-Initiatives. Unemployed are forced into these initiatives, and the clever leaches are setting it all up, being paid with millions of taxpayers money, it is extremely profitable for them!

    For example, people are send to sewing courses. For weeks they attend these course and are taught to sew, I kid you not. The amount of people who got a job after finishing the course? Zero, Nada!

    Our clever business men however, who setup these schemes, they makes a flippin fortune, we talk millions here. The unemployed are heavily exploited in Germany, economically, and politically at the same time and there are tons of such examples. The second labor market in Germany is nothing but subsidized and enforced slave labor.

    Another very good one is DIE TAFELN.

    It is a project where food is distributed to people who need it. I mean, you got that right, I am talking about Germany, this is a country wide operation!

    So veggie dealers, restaurants, bakeries and the likes are contributing their goods, to help this service distribute food through more than 800 outlets across Germany. People get a bag of food, veggies, fruits and stuff for 1 Euro. Sounds good right? Yea, just wait….

    Take a veggie dealer for example. They are coming to collect the goods, and he gives them x cartons fill with stuff. He then gets a receipt for x cartons he donated, and can subtract this from his taxes, so essentially, it is tax subsidized. Yeah, I hear you, nothing wrong with that, and I agree.

    But the reality looks slightly different. From 660 Tons of food they receive daily, more than 210 tons are going straight into the trash, I kid you not! Before they can distribute the goods, people have to hand select and separate the rotten crap from the food that is still usable.

    Why? Because our clever veggie dealer is giving them food that is rotten, and mixes it with food that is past sell by date, but still good enough to eat. He does that so spare thousands of Euros on his yearly bio trash bill, which is substantial. You would think that the drivers complain and tell him to shovel his rotten crap where the sun does not shine, but if they do it, the clever veggie dealer will stop supporting the service altogether.

    Bottom line, he does not only spare thousands of Euros for his trash bill, but at the same time reduces his taxes with the receipt he got for his rotten food, double win.

    So now you know it, keep it in mind when you are told the next time how brilliant and efficient the German system is, it is not!

    A German Europe, it is the ultimate nightmare!

    • Malcolm McClure

      Georg would strongly appeal to our common sense to describe poverty in clearer terms. He provides a link to Engbersan’s admirable attempt to unravel the gestalt of poverty. This may be paraphrased as follows:

      “…at least four types of discourse can be distinguished – bureaucratic, moralising, dramatic and academic.

      Adepts of emotional language complain about the heartless jargon of the bureaucrats. The complex terminology of the social scientists, with its multitude of definitions and approaches, is the despair of politicians. Meanwhile those directly concerned fail to recognise themselves in the welter of conflicting jargon. For the poor, poverty is not a matter of definition. It is the harsh reality of daily life.

      Bureaucratic language concentrates on defining a poverty line. The poor are those with incomes below a given level. In many European countries the state sets a limit below which it grants assistance. Here the terminology is abstract, technical, almost neutral.

      Moralising language is very different. It makes a judgement about the behaviour of the poor, depicting them either as irresponsible, dangerous and lacking in motivation, or as unfortunate, innocent and needy. Rooted in American traditions of social help, this language is mainly concerned to distinguish between those who deserve charity and those who do not. Its use has increased considerably over the last ten years.

      In the 1980s and 1990s dramatic language has played a major role in securing material aid for the poor and, more generally, in rousing public opinion. Specific, expressive and emotional, it differs from bureaucratic jargon in describing the daily problems of the poor – the school transport they cannot afford, the humiliation of the dole queue, the bitterness of those who suffer in silence.

      In seeking to define a level of poverty, academic language is similar to the language of the bureaucrats. But it is less categorical and one-sided, employing alternative concepts like social exclusion and underclass. It pays more attention to the causes of poverty but, in Europe at least, it rarely looks at those causes together with the poor themselves. It is mostly concerned with collective phenomena like the growing job insecurity caused by the transition to a post-industrial society, the weakening of social ties, demographic trends such as the increasing proportion of elderly people and immigrants, and the dismantling of the welfare state.”

      Unfortunately, instead of sticking to the reality of poverty and its effects in Ireland, Georg then jumps on a succession of ill-connected hobby horses, dragging us from child psychologists through banks, political puppets and the troika, ending up scavenging through waste food trash cans in Germany.

      All very interesting, Georg, but please try to stick to one point per contribution. Otherwise you risk obscuring the many important points that you helpfully contribute here.

      • Malcolm, I am not interested in subscribing to the western domination cult of linear thinking.

        Fortunately, I was educated in different, in circular ways of thinking as well. It is all connected, whether the poverty of mental & physical health, food poverty, job poverty, it is all connected to the same underlying system of a predator capitalism that is executed against the citizens via an increasingly totalitarian bureaucracy .

        On a ‘private’ note, if you were to listen to the story telling some elderly are still teaching at the campfires of the remaining native american tribes, you find that none of their stories follow a linear structure, and for good reasons. The western ‘cult’ of A leads to B leads to C, it is insufficient in many ways. When I write my contributions here, in a way, they flow like these story tellings. I hope this explains a little bit what you may perceive as unconnected, on the contrary, it is all connected.


    • franta

      I would totally agree. If we look at the epicenter of European crisis it is in so called Western European countries. These countries including Germany have been doggedly destroying their economies for while missing one very important point that when you outsource your production you also outsource your wealth. It is highly probable that we are allowed only to good German room (to use David’s analogy) but real Germany is very different.

    • bonbon

      Very good. Poverty? Eire knows what that means, even with the Tiger grin of denial. A deep fear, memories of empire, and never discussed by brave Tigers, the genocide of 1846, politely referred to as the Famine, Great Hunger in Irish. Hear President Higgins talking about the 1950′s. Partly this primal terror drives Dublin into crazy deals. Put another way social engineering was already provided by empire. It had to be newly applied in Italy, Greece. Social engineering in Germany uses – well that’s obvious.

      But Germany is not its clever leeches. Germany’s physical economy, now directly attacked with the Nuclear exit, is the example Ireland needs, the Germany never discussed here. Any non-truthy non-monetaristic/euro attempt to discuss poverty leads directly to the physical economy, and that includes healthcare as you very correctly mention. Charity, Die Tafeln etc, is no substitute for growth, the church’s fatal error.

      The combination of Green hysteria, plus the euro is really a two-pronged attack. Green ideology has infected CDU, (and no surprise the Bishops conference who replaced the cross with wind turbines on their hats), now known as the Climate Democratic Union. If you check, all financial liberalization reforms since 1990 were led by Greens. No surprise as the physical economy is the target. Urgently read Dr. Schellenhubers WBGU manifesto, Merkel’s advisor! The Great Transformation. With what intention? If the physical economy is smashed the relative potential relative potential population density drops dramatically – in other words genocide.

      “Poverty” is a euphemism for genocide, as poverty today is policy, not accidental. In fact poverty in 1846 was British policy – food exports peaked to stabilize prices -the Army convoyed food exports in front of dying subjects. Poverty in Germany can only be policy – the alternative “Wohlstand” is too well known.
      Poverty in Africa – See Sir Henry Kissinger’s NSSM 200 how precisely the denial of agro/industrial development will reduce population. This was policy all through the 1970′s to 1990′s. Schellenhuber and co. are even more extreme.

      Poverty in China and India with approx. 700 million each under the minimum, it their top priority. China especially has a strong physical economic outlook, as Lagarde probably cannot understand. Try selling them toxic paper!

      There is much more to this. You raised a very good point!

      • Bonbon,

        That is why I hope to make it clearer by emphasizing thedeliberate failure of DOHA. It went nearly unnoticed by the greater public, but it is a major milestone on our way back into feudalism.

        The reactionary front in Europe, represented by the EPP is causing damage beyond comprehension, they might even go into the history books as the overwhelming European political right wing Lobby that caused total social breakdown in Europe.

        the Bishops conference who replaced the cross with wind turbines on their hats

        Nice one! :)

        • bonbon

          I do not subscribe to DOHA – It is a symptom of the catastrophic financial and economic dogma of the last 40 years. The G20 is even worse. Here is a Spiegel report on the end of Euro and DOHA :

          Oct. 7, 2011–Quoting Chancellor Merkel once again with her mantra, “The failure of the euro is also the failure of Europe,” Germany’s Der Spiegel weekly has a weird online commentary under the headline, “A possible scenario for the end of the euro,” which poses the following questions:
          “But how exactly are we going to know when the common currency has reached its end? What exactly does it mean when we say a “failure of the euro?” And is it possible that the currency may have already failed a long time ago?”
          The article then goes through some possible scenarios of the dissolution or transformation of the euro, saying that none of these plans would work, all of them would result in chaos, because they would never be kept secret, and therefore the financial markets would torpedo them. More likely, the article claims, is a process of exhaustion of the eurocrats: “[M]ore realistic is a slow and agonizing degradation of the euro zone. It would be a silent failure: A slow erosion of the rules (which is already well under way), countries growing apart, and a corrosion of the institutions holding it together.”
          “It has happened before; for example, to the World Trade Organization. Just a few years ago, the Doha Round of trade talks, aimed at further liberalizing global trade, threatened to collapse. Developing countries were demanding that rich nations
          cut agricultural subsidies, whereas the industrialized countries, for their part, wanted the developing world to cut import tariffs on their products. In answer to the question of how one would know when the talks had failed, WTO head Pascal Lamy laughed, and said: `Diplomats are good at making things sound good. But they can’t make fools out of people.’ That was four years ago. Since then, the negotiations have made no significant progress. But nobody has declared them to have failed.”

          Declaring failure was merely punctuation.

  3. SleeplessInWicklow

    I actually cant wait for the train wreck. I want something to happen as soon as possible. If they had just let this wreck come in the first place we would probably be doing a little better right now in my opinion.

  4. Adam Byrne


  5. Just in – Mix up in Kenny’s Speech
    - Here’s the one he was supposed to give;

  6. Julia

    Listen to this interesting interview on Pat Kenny this morning. He is talking to Proffessor Steve Keane:!rii=9%3A3111565%3A133%3A16%2D11%2D2011%3A

  7. Lyndon Jones

    I would much prefer Germans running Irelands finances than the present crowd .
    David is constantly looking for a quick fix , default , printing money ….new soft euro. Thats not going to happen , in Germany they have the lowest unemployment in 20 years they are cutting income tax there is no crisis there , its only us PIIGS.
    Merkel says that it will take 10 years to sort out . Germans have had no wage inflation in 10 years they are uber competitive .
    For Ireland its going to be a long hard slog , there is no way out , Ireland is uncompetitive , we must except higher taxes and a lower standard of living , it has already started , we must get our house in order.
    Austerity => balance budget => stop borrowing, is the only way out.

    • Harper66

      Lyndon Jones => computer => troll

      • paddythepig

        He/she is entitled to express his opinion. Just because someone disagrees with you doesn’t make that person a troll.

        I agree with the jist of Lyndon’s post. Does that make me a troll?

        • Harper66

          A while back a chap used to post on here by the name of paddy jones he used adopt a similar line to Lyndon. I don’t know with all these paddys knocking about the place it’s hard to keep track of who is who.

          I do however know that many people read the articles and posts on this website to get accurate information. Lyndons post above is inaccurate in that it wrongly gives the impression that Irelands sovereign debt bankrupted us. This is not the case Ireland ran an unacceptable deficit of 18 billion but this is not what got us locked out of bond markets and then bankrupted us. Taking on private banking debt locked us out and bankrupted us. This private debt was is no small measure from German institutions and seeing as the very people who over saw those poor investment practices are still in place in Germany I most certainly do not think it would be preferential to have Germans instead of Irish running the show.

          This misinformation and pro austerity spin is a constant thread in Lyndons posts.

          • paddythepig

            Come on Harper66, don’t obfuscate the issue, and admit you’re wrong to label someone a troll when they are expressing their opinion.

            You express your opinion in the post above, and nobody who disagrees with you labels you a troll. I disagree with the logic in your post above, but I respect your right to express your opinion.

            BTW … Lyndon’s post doesn’t mention the impact of the banking bailout on the sovereign at all. Why are you talking about something he didn’t mention at all, rather than what he did mention?

          • Harper66


            While reading back over comments posted to a previous article I see someone asked Lyndon if he has posted previously under a different name. He did not reply.

            Lyndons argument that there is no crisis in Germany is spurious. Germany has not taken responsibility for its reckless investments during the boom instead it has bullied smaller states in to perverting capitalism by forcing states to bank guarantee German investment losses.

            Uchrisns post below blows more holes in his argument.

            Lyndons post does mention the impact of the bailout as he infers we required a bailout because we were not “uber competitive”. This is incorrect. We required a bail out because we were stupid enough to take on banking debt.

            I have had it with listening to this “austerity” bilge. It is the opposite of capitalism and it is the opposite of democracy. Anyone trying to run a business will know our economy is being strangled by Merkels austerity. Raise VAT and force employers to cover sick pay regardless that prsi is being paid by employee and employer. How does a business trying to stay afloat survive these further onslaughts? Please spare me the spin and waffle.

            Paddy, why are you so concerned? I dont see you rushing to defend any other posters on this site.

          • paddythepig

            1. You are putting words in other poster’s mouths. Lyndon Jones does not say anything about bailouts. When he talks about being ‘uber competitive’, he is referring to wage inflation. Go read his post again.

            2. Why can’t you back down from calling him a troll? He is expressing a valid opinion. You referred to me as a troll some time ago, when I had the temerity to question you. So is everyone who disagrees with Harper66 a troll?

            3. Just to put your mind at rest. I have no connection whatsoever to lyndon jones, or paddyjones. I just happen to agree with some of his posts.

            4. Rather than receding back to your usual myopic line that it was the bank bailout that bankrupted us, and telling us all that this is a fact, you could consider questioning your own point of view. Can you prove this conviction that you continually state to be a fact? Do you have any doubts at all about your convictions? Can you think of any potential risks to the wider economy with allowing a systemic failure in the Irish banking system? Even in a perfect world where there were no bank bailouts with zero knock-on side-effects to the trading economy, in the midst of the biggest credit crunch in living memory, who would want to lend our country money and why? Who would want to lend to our banks – either existing or reconstructed – so they could lend to business, so businesses can then trade internationally to pay the taxes to pay the countrys bills – and why? How would you have funded the day-to-day deficits from 2008 onwards in the biggest credit crunch in living memory? Any doubts at all Harper66?

            Or am I just a big bad troll for daring to pose these questions?

          • Harper66

            1- He is pushing the idea that austerity will balance our budget. Austerity is the direct result of our bail out. You mention one you invoke the other.
            2- You ignore my point that Germany has refused to take the consequences of its poor investments during the boom.
            3 – Bailing out of Anglo made no sense and was anti capitalist. This action bankrupted the country. Fact.
            4 – Austerity is anti capitalist and anti democratic.
            5- Austerity is killing the real economy.
            5 – EU zone is bankrupt.
            6-No doubts. None at all.

          • paddythepig

            Harper66, you are suffering from several degrees of denial, and a startling myopia. The first is a failure to acknowledge the role of a banking system as a vital piece of infastructure in the economy, and to conveniently disregard any potential side-effect due to it’s disruption. The second is to attribute the bankruptcy of the country to Anglo (bad and all as it was) .. but fail to attribute it to anything else such as day-to-day overspending and waste. The third is a failure to come to terms with the international credit environment. The fourth is to term austerity as anti-capitalist ; so living within your means is anti-capitalist now, what’s that all about? And finally, anyone who disagrees with your analysis has to be a troll.

          • Harper66

            Where did I fail to acknowledge the role of the banking system as a vital piece of economic infrastructure?
            I also did not disregard any potential results of a disruption to the provision of such a service. You are putting words in my mouth there.
            Paddy, taking on Anglo did bankrupt Ireland. There was no way Ireland could cover their liabilities. The markets saw this and began to down grade accordingly. This pantomime was cheer led by the banking fraternity lying through their teeth that they were solvent. It was a case of tell me what I want to hear by the politicians. This is an indisputable fact.
            International credit environment? Don’t make me laugh The world is still awash with money they just don’t want to give it to morons who will guarantee basket case institutions.
            Running a deficit is bad practise. We could discuss this but I think it would be a short conversation as I think we would both agree on this. However it was not our deficit that bankrupted the country. I think we would also be in full agreement on governmental waste .Just because I am not afraid to call a spade a spade when it comes to the bail out and its direct result austerity why do you assume I am trying to defend waste and bad practices?
            What I am Paddy is someone who is on the wrong side of “austerity”. I am watching my earnings plummet while I am still paying the same for my doctor, my solicitor, my politicians, my utilities etc.
            This austerity is a deception and I for one am not fool enough to swallow the nonsense that posters Lyndon and yourself trot out.
            You want to solve this crisis? leave failed enterprises go, start cutting where it fucking matters and spare me the myopic bullshit.

          • Colin

            I think paddyjones has moved to Germany to open up a recruitment office to help all the unemployed Paddies to fill all those unfilled German job vacancies. He must be making big money there. Gwan the Paddy! Good man Paddy, fair play to ya!

      • 33square

        33square => computer => troll :D

    • uchrisn

      Lydon, German Headline unemployment does not tell the whole story.
      2 classes of workers exist in Germany, the underemployed and unrepresented and the ‘core workers’. The first group has taken a huge hit in wages and conditions the 2nd group has recieved garantees of employment in return for slight recutions in hours etc.
      70% of the first group contains ‘skilled’ workers. Germany has the highest percentage of ‘low paid workers’ after the U.S.
      The first group are claiming social security benefits because their wage is so low, are on temporary contracts and largely work in the service industry.
      The first group workers earned 90% of the wage of the second group in the 1970s, now they earn 40%.
      There is no minimum wage in Germany.Is this what we want to see in Ireland?
      Surely Ireland can improve on the German system and try to reduce everyones wages more equally if competitivness is to be restored that way.
      On the other hand we can learn many things from Germany. Controls on residential and commerical rents for example.

    • TJM

      Germany has no wage inflation as they absorbed their own little China in the 90′s when the wall came down. No mention of the rest of the EU citizens bailing them out when the wheels were coming of that apple cart. Since the wall collapsed the average industrial wage in Germany has collapsed also and the difference between the upper 5% of society and the lower 95% has increased dramatically. Merkil and her cronies are all for austerity in the periphery as she has a dirty little secret. She knows that there is nothing left in the tank and that the Germany banks are just as shaky as the French Banks. The one thing she hasn’t realised is that the periphery countries like Ireland buy a lot more snazzy German designer goods then we did in the eighties. Mercedes in Ireland in the eighties were only driven by TD’s BMW’s were a non brand and Volkswagens were for rich farmers doctors and the professional classes the rest of us drove clapped out Fords and Fiats with guaranteed Irish stickers on the back. I’m sure it was the same in the other periphery countries. The 2% VAT I have to admit is a sensible move as the 5% at the top are still spending in Ireland and this is the only way to raise there taxes. I would go as far as introducing a Luxury level of VAT of 30% on products such as Mercedes, BMW, Buggatii, Bently, Miele, etc products where there is an over emphises on luxury and distinction in the marketing litrature.

  8. uchrisn

    A fiscal Union should allow Eurobonds. The ECB could be allowed to buy a certain percentage of these.
    The US Fed bought 80% of US government bonds in 2009.
    They cant do that for Italy as they are not Italies central bank.
    Fiscal union is nessecary.

  9. So if every route looks grim: – “And a messy implosion of the Euro would cause massive dislocation as savings are debased with huge social and emotional consequences.”
    – What is the likely extent of this potential social disaster in the short, medium and long term?

  10. What is Competitiveness

    We seem to speak about this important word first when comparing our national performance and another country namely Germany .Competitiveness commences in our personal lives and our personal budgets .

    To sample how this is compared try to go to Lidle Supermarkets and stand and watch at the check out the following :

    What items you buy ?
    What items others buy ?
    What other nationalities buy ?

    I am always doing this and it tells so much about the consumer beside you .

    For example recently I saw a Chinese couple purchase a complete large box of packets of noodles .I subsequently learned that they do not eat bread and potatoes as we do .Other than they having to put on the noodle some vegs and meat this was a complete meal in itself .And Very Cheap too .

    How do you recognise an Irish poor consumers trolly ?
    Usually it has lots of the following :

    Sparkling Drinks
    Packets of Tayto
    No Vegs or very little
    No fruit or very little
    Lots of various Breads
    Lots of tins of beans and pasteurised foods
    Frozen Foods
    No fresh cuts of meat or very little

    As anyone will explain to you the above are very expensive and give very little food value to anyone .In fact the above are very unhealthy too thus causing addiction to prescription drugs too.To regain our national competitiveness we must start with our own personal competitiveness and in doing so reduce our costs of living and learn to budget as competitive as our fellow foreign nationals shopping in the same store.

    • bmv

      Hi John Allen, I have seen the same thing. I recently had to fundraise at a main brand supermarket by bagging groceries for customers. I was amazed at what people buy. Slabs of diet cola, giant bags of crisps. The cheapest of white bread. Most of this stuff came to half of what they spend their money on. I know schools are trying to combat this at primary level by healthy eating programmes, but maybe it should be introduced at secondary level too. It would save money in the long run, and save on medical bills too.

    • Adam Byrne

      Very well said John.

    • Further…. what they claim to be bread here…. oh my! This ain’t bread, it is the illusion of bread. LOL

      I remember that this was one of the first impression I got in ireland, very american. I would also guess that nutritional deficits in Ireland are massive, sugar and salt intake probably bursting the charts, convenience food more than anything else, and yes, the variations of cheese for example, very limited, most stuff is that pasteurized tasteless junk, or take analog pizza cheese, or did you ever hear about Glue-Meat? – Man, I miss good cheese, I used to live in the Netherlands! It was my weekly shopping highlight, Old Gauda, Appenzeller etc. just delicious. -

      • 33square

        you can (surprisingly) buy unpasteurised cheese in a supermarket chain renowned for good quality food that was recently bought out by musgraves

      • 33square

        what I find funny is that we take milk from cows, pasteurise it, make yoghurt from it, add bifidus x, lactobacillus y and sell it as a healthy food.

        why is pasteurisation not simply an option instead of a dictation? what does pasteurisation do to enzymes? what role do enzymes play in human health?

        • bonbon

          Look at the name: Pasteur. He was called to Paris because the beer (yes beer, not wine at first) was going off, never mind milk. He pinned it down to unwanted agents mixed with the good. Today we have regularly Swiss seriously ill from raw milk cheese, an unwanted bacteria, And we have Tuberculosis eradication.

          Have we learned nothing about good beer?

    • coldblow

      I wouldn’t say just the trolleys of the poor but of everyone. And you missed out the cereal and the ‘soup’.

      I always have a look to see what people are buying and am always amazed that they seem to have found stuff that I never knew existed let alone needed. In fact there is rarely anything in common between what I buy (spuds, cabbage, butter, pork chops,(yes) beans, porridge (or even ‘porage’), eggs, tea) and what they are bringing home: fiddly little packets of pasta, cured meat, diminutive ’boutique’ containers with nothing in them, dainty coloured bottles of God knows what, H2O (in small bottles), little shrink wrapped portions of weird dwarfish vegetables, more feckin’ pasta, small shiny objects, cylinders and long pointy stuff, substances that might be pesto or related, half-tins (FFS) of beans, assorted pointless sh*te… Compared to this, potato chips embody wholesome common sense.

      I do not recognize my fellow citizens. Do they call themselves men? How will I ever be able to feel empathy with them? No wonder they are incapable of electing a government.

      I have been watching them all right. Over the years. Closely. Never saw one yet that could clear their plate. An indictment of modern Ireland.

      By the way, Dunne’s white cheddar cheese is the best value and easily the best tasting of all IMHO – get the big blocks for about €4. Their ‘porage’ is also cheap.

    • Colin

      Here’s what came into my mind…..

      There must be better clips of Caroline Aherne in this role in the Fast Show somewhere.

    • CitizenWhy

      My Irish born and raised parents provided lots of fruits for breakfast and snacks and vegetables at each meal, and veggie soups. Taytos too, boiled (good boiling taytos are low in starch). Bread very little (just for once a week tuna sandwiches and bakery rolls for Sunday breakfast, otherwise oatmeal and fruit.)

      Of course we had a whole street of greengrocers nearby where we bought our veggies fresh every day. And truck farmers sold veggies and fruit on our block from the back of their trucks. Of course in those ancient days there were a lot of truck farms within the boundaries of NYC, and even more just outside the city limits.

      We bought most of our meats at the Kosher meat store. Except, of course, for pork, ham, sausages (bangers) and bacon. Bacon or sausages only once a week, on Sundays.

      About twice a month we had the traditional Irish boiled dinner of ham boiled with cabbage, potatoes, carrots, parsnips and celery. Greens on the side, kale and spinach and broccoli the favorites.

      Roast meats in the winter were surrounded by loads of vegetables.

      Our sweets were puddings and trifles layered with tapioca pudding, chopped strawberries and often a layer of another pudding. Sometimes with a lady finger or cake layer. Sweets were not eaten at meals but at late tea (9 pm) when neighbors came by (often with soda bread since my mother never served it). No baked goods provided by my mother. My mother or father (good cooks) could not successfully bake a thing. The rare attempt was a disaster, especially soda bread.

      These habits to one degree or another were normal among our Irish immigrant neighbors. Except they could bake soda bread.

      In my old age I buy organic broths, dump in a ton of organic vegetables already washed and chopped. Two minutes to prepare, one steel pot, some salt and spices. Cooks in 15-25 minutes. Delicious. This is a habit I got from my Irish parents, only I simplified everything to minimize prepping and cleanup. A small tub of wild Pacific salmon and a small tub of wild Pacific pate last me all week, taken with organic salt free crackers. No meats. Too much trouble to cook and clean. No microwaved food. A bag of organic oranges and apples a week. Dark sweet cherries (frozen in small packages) for joint health.

      A few blocks from my apartment there is a hipster arts center with a restaurant that serves chef-worthy organic meals and side dishes really cheap. Other things, they make a delicious winter stew with beef, and they serve great mussels and fish dishes. Also nearby is a Mexican restaurant with really cheap meals (most of the patrons are Mexican). There’s also an Indian grocery with organic, cheap ingredients and spices for kicheri (one of my Irish aunts, raised in India, would cook this great dish when I visited).

      People eat badly for convenience. I used to. Now I eat well for convenience. The trick is convenience. All those dodgy processed foods are for convenience. But it’s easy to eat well with no fuss or even cooking talent. I actually spend less in total on food now that I pay extra for each organic item. I ended up this way when I recalled how healthy my parents fed us, and I vowed to return to those good habits.

      I take no prescription drugs. I lose money by paying each month for Medicare and never using it (yes, it is not free, but it is relatively affordable). US health care services are not good for people without a lot of money or a job with health insurance. Tonight I gave $30 dollars to a homeless Afro-American woman with cancer so she could pay a fee that would get her an address so she could get disability payments and live at a hospice. She was not conning me. I know how the system works.

      When I visited Ireland and stayed with relatives the meals had plenty of vegetables. Both city and country relatives.

  11. Deco

    One route less grim than all the others.

    Allowing capitalist consequences to capitalist failure. Give the bank bondholders 0 % on the Euro. Nothing.

    It might make them hire smarter people in future.

    • Colin

      I’d settle for more ethical people rather than smarter people. Give me highly ethical people of average ability over smart people with dubious ethics any day of the week.

      • 33square

        if only there was a way we could guarantee/prove the ethical standards of an organisation (or even a single person). Ethical actions could be given a value, we could trade it, like Carbon credits :D

        Ethical Credits… hmmm…

        The only way would be true transparency, like what you get in… Open Source… That’s it… Open Source is the answer. Open Source government… Open source trading… I’ll bet that gets some software dev a bullet in the head ; )

      • Deco

        You are right.

        After we had “the most cunning, the most devious of them all” running the country for a decade, and everything was left in a FUBAR state in his midst.

  12. bonbon

    I have just read a vary ominous report. Notice how the so-called markets toppling governments? Greece, Italy, (Ireland got to vote, well). Everybody must notice this domino effect. Even the Irish Ind. excused the end of democracy, sad but necessary.

    But notice what happened in Athens, just before Papandreou resigned – the entire Army chiefs of staff were replaced in one swoop. Now Italy’s Marionette Monti has placed a high-ranking NATO officer as Defense Minister – Admiral Giampaolo Di Paola directly involved in the illegal Libya war.
    Just coincidentally military exercises involving Sardinia, Israel, Greek and Italian units.

    Looks like the war buildup is removing systematically any effective resistance. After all any brainwashed ecnomics 101 grad knows Adam Smith’s invisible hand is at work. Well, sometimes not so invisible.

    They will call at Dublin sooner or later for cooperation in this buildup, maybe already have. They will call Berlin too, who resisted the Libyan pressure. London is probably already on board.
    This is why Russia sees the Italian situation totally differently. They know they are the target along with China.

    Obama is going for it – the old British imperial war “solution”, but this time only nuclear weapons are available – conventional war will not work anymore.

    I wonder what Kenny and Merkel are really discussing?

    • 33square

      Kenny was made go over with an unsigned budget that the Germans were going to sign off on (or otherwise). They made sure everyone in this country (Europe) with half a brain knew that this was happening… why?

      Or… they could’ve been discussing Shannon airport :D

      • bonbon

        Kenny gets the Greek treatment. Maybe next the Berlusconi medicine? Even German finance minster Schaeuble wants to give fiscal oversight to Brussels. He cannot legally do this – the Constitutional Court ruled very clearly. Is Kenny the poster boy again?

        So the real question is has Eire any legal way to stop Kenny doing this? Has the Constitution failed, or is it bypassed? Is this a surrender of sovereignty without any mandate, sold as a “leak”.

        Could be impeachable.

  13. franta

    The one of the main problem of modern society is an addiction to money. But money as a fire is a good servant but a terrible master. Also as a fire money is only a tool to achieve an economic activity but it mustn’t ever be a goal. As far as I know we can’t eat money, money can’t entertain us money can’t give us a hug or take us to the cinema. In split of a second we might face a situation when we won’t be able to purchase anything what we need or want with money we currently have. After all money only reflects the wealth the individual, society or nation has which is an infrastructure (including technologies to allow us to create and produce, or to manage and distribute…) and people with their knowledge, talents and skills.
    Let’s assume that we have machinery to built tunnels, railway tracks and stations (BTW there is some machinery neatly parked in Dun Laoghaire), let’s assume we have some people available who do not work on anything else in the moment then this should allows us to build not only metro North but later metro South, metro West… We do not really need money to do it, do we? We just need some mechanism how to reward these people…
    My point is the money is not important but what is behind it is.

    • bonbon

      Good point. Money is not “modern”, rather ancient going at least back to Babylon, the temple of Apollo, the oracle at Delphi, an ancient tool of an oligarchical set. To keep underlings attached to this, various crises, shortages, instruments are all the time in play. The first great crash of the Bardi banks in Florence was caused by early derivatives.

      Today we have experience with national banking, now almost totally erased. The US First National Bank of Hamilton, was a Credit System, not monetaristic. There is a huge difference.
      1)It is a direct attack on the ancient tool’s uses
      2)It shows the difference between republic and empire
      3)It is target number 1 for the threatened elite.

      Example : Take JFK’s Apollo. $1 invested returned $14.
      Why? The clear mission for 10 years changed the meaning of what that $1 “is”. The statement of intent, and the commitment of the economy, generates credit, not printing notes, which always leads to 1923 hyperinflation because there is a vacuum of intention, merely desperation. Germany understands this to some extent – hence the resistance to desperation. The US still had the shadow of this system until Nixon killed it in 1972.
      FDR rediscovered in 1933 the original Credit System, applied it – result the Glass-Steagall, the RFC, New Deal, Bretton Woods of 1944.

      Very important : the best example is Matthew and Henry Carey, Irish American. Just a glance at Harmony of Interests, support for Alexander Hamilton’s national banking poses the obvious.

      President Higgins in his first radio chat clearly pinpoints Glass-Steagall as the core issue, a direct result of the Credit System.
      Glass-Steagall means splitting the banks and supporting the piece that runs the credit-system. The monetaristic piece (politely investment, derivative toxic) is left out to dry.

    • bonbon

      Forgot the most important point – the physical economy. FDR created the TVA, Tennessee Valley Authority, the hydroelectification of the poorest US region for the world to see what a republic credit system can do. China adopted this fully – TVA chief Lilienthal (sp?) went there. JFK created Apollo and intended NAWAPA, the North American Power Alliance – talk about tunnels, pumps, power, transport!
      Transaqua for Chad, refilling Aral, and Bering Straits tunnels are to be funded with the credit system.

    • bonbon

      Considering that massive projects such as the landbridge from Paris or Rotterdam, via Darmstadt to Warsaw, Moscow, Irkutsk, Alaska to SF are on the table right now, Ireland should connect up with a tunnel to the UK. A firm in Dublin or London looked at that a few years ago. High speed goods transport across Asia, of course means Ireland actually produces high tech goods. Power for this will not come from the oligarchies greeny swamp turbines, but nuclear. Ireland right now has no nuclear engineering and needs about 10GW. Remember the population of 5 million has not even recovered to 8 million before 1846! Note the rush in Germany, Switzerland, and now France to jump in the swamp? This is imposed madness. Why – to stop this development I layed out above.

  14. bonbon

    Now that you mention grim crossroads, financial algebra was never the solution. Monti’s Italian cabinet of Goldman Sachs and Inter-Alpha bankers and military (have we had that before) is an open book for anyone to read.

    Mario Monti is the number two of a political organization called the “Spinelli Group,” named for the late Altiero Spinelli, the famous founder of the European Federalist movement. Number one is Jacques Delors; number three is Joschka Fischer.
    The Spinelli Group was created last year as a political association among members of the European Parliament in order to stop the comeback of the “intergovernmental method” in European affairs, i.e., the return of national governments. Their manifesto is a raving call for a European government against those nasty, bellicose nation-states, fully in the line of
    Spinelli’s original world government manifesto in 1944, the “Manifesto of Ventotene,” drafted after a Wellsian blueprint. The first news item of the Spinelli Group is, not accidentally, a speech given recently in Bruges by Italian President Giorgio
    An unknown Jester has put the name of Hjalmar Schacht on top of the “Public signatories” of the Spinelli Group Manifesto.
    Note : Schacht was Hitlers economics minister, and BIS chief. We all know what schachtian economics means.

  15. Alf

    David, I have to say I am confused by this article. On the one hand, you say that the problem stems from the unsustainable crony bailouts but then you seem to say it stems from the imbalance of core savers. Personally, I think the problem of core versus periphery is not the key problem. I believe ‘We are where are’ because of bailing out failed banks, making markets nervous and forcing unsustainable debts onto the taxpayer. In essence, we are rewarding failure and therefore we get more of the same. I believe core versus periphery imbalance is important but I don’t think it is why the Euro is failing. Fiscal union would address the imbalance but it would also have other drawbacks such as centralising the EU economies as a whole. I believe this would not be beneficial to Ireland, a peripheral island in the EU, in the long term. In fact, I believe it would make the situation worse and it would give even more to a central authority to bail-out failed banks. The real problem with this bail-out approach is that it is unsustainable, and the market knows it. This is causing rates to rise and forcing countries into the hands of the IMF. There is simply too much gambling debt to bail out – the markets know this. Can we really say for sure what is hiding on the books of all these banks? How much in toxic derivatives is hanging onto these banks? Without clarity we are going to continue to be prey of the buzzards. If we encourage this failed policy, the whole Eurozone could go bankrupt, in the same the way Ireland did.

    You believe a fiscal union would solve this?

    Apart from this, it would be a fiscal union, done to save private corporations and a failed banking system. In this process Corporations are being made too important and I believe it would set a dangerous precedent for the future of the EU.

    If we consider the United States (a fiscal union), the policy is still a failure. The system is not sustainable if politicians continue to prop up failed corporations.

    I believe we need to get back to basics. A bank holiday, forced restructuring and write-downs, a Euro devaluation to pay for deposit loss is the best (old) way to keep the Eurozone alive. No nation wanted the Eurozone to fail and it would be only fair. After this process, nations should decide if it is in their best interests to continue use a common currency, a mechanism to leave should be developed.

    • uchrisn

      Alf in the current situation Merkel and Sarkosy are only doing their jobs – representing their people. The ECB is undemocratic is protecting the banks and does not in any way represent the people of Europe.
      What Europe lacks is a central democratic institution or person which can strongly represent its people and has power.
      If a common treasury and finance minister was put into place they would have the power of delaying fiscal tranfers and payments.
      Germany and France broke the terms of the stability and growth pact, yet no institution in Europe was powerful enough to discipline them. Jean Claude Trichet has suggested a treasurary is nessecay.
      The biggest danger is that people are so annoyed with ‘Europe’ which is Germanys president looking after Germanys people and a central bank looking after the banks. They don’t realise that they actually need a stronger democratic Europe and its a lack of this which is the issue. A lack of a strong central democratic EU power, representing the people is one of the reasons Ireland has been pushed around.

      • bonbon

        Would “strong” mean elected? German citizens never got a single opportunity to vote in any EU treaty/accord. Maybe democracy appears “weak”. Anyway have a look at the Spinelli group, the Federalists I document above.

        Ireland has been pushed around? Germany was pushed into the Euro, dumping the successful DM. Who then is doing the pushing?

        President Wolf has made unusually critical statements recently, basically reminding Merkel of the legal limits imposed by the Constitutional Court. Almost every item in your comment conflicts with German Basic Law, and yes part of Lisbon is in there and Merkel did sideline it.

        Flouting law and constitutions is hardly the way to a better one?

        • uchrisn

          The whole point is that the lack of a strong democratic European institution or person – elected – with power behind it – a treasury, is allowing the ECB and France and Germany to dicate things.
          Any treaty change would not be pushed in an illegal way.
          Ireland has been pushed around by the ECB threatening to withdraw funding if bondholders were not bailed out and the other EU countires making a 2.5% punitive interest extra penalty on the bailout.

          • bonbon

            Germany was forced to dump the DM so how can you say it is dictating anything? Any discussion of the next step that avoids this will only make the mess worse.

            Look at Daily Telegraph, Torygraph’s AEP to get an idea of who is pushing your “solution”. They have train-crashed right into the German deep terror of 1923 hyperinflation. Monetizing such toxic paper leads right there with EFSF, ECB or any other means.

            The Euro is an instrument with a specific purpose. When it no longer functions, another instrument will be imposed, likely with the same purpose. Calculate all you want, but pose an alternative with the same purpose and that will be an idea of what they will try.

            It will not work anyway as we are in the middle of the total breakdown of transatlantic civilization. There is simply no time for referendum’s etc. They have realized that and one faction is going for destruction.

          • Ireland has been pushed around by the ECB threatening to withdraw funding if bondholders were not bailed out

            This is the official version and I do not buy.

            Ireland had more than sufficient leverage to negotiate, you could have done it, I could have done it! The power that be chose not to use the leverage and ruined every citizens life in the process for years to come!

          • 33square

            @Georg: no jobs in this country without our friends. no trade in/out of this country without our friends. this country is NOTHING without our friends. our “friends” didn’t want us to negotiate, it wouldn’t have looked good. instead, we were to play the “poster boy” role. in return, our “friends” won’t destroy us. get it?

            i doubt we had the option to negotiate…

          • 33square, you need not worry about your enemies with friends like these!

    • uchrisn

      Its true that write downs and restructuring are neede and it was comforting to hear Mohammed El-Erian say this last week on Bloomberg, even if he was just referring to the U.S. housing market.
      The CEO of one of the largest bond funds and also a major player in the CDS market is an influnential figure and if they are strating to talk writedowns, then we might see writedowns.
      Mohammed was on about a 2 tier Europe a few months before Sarkosy came up with it.
      Basically almost anything Mohamed goes on about is picked up by EU politicans later, after all he is the major bond buyer.

    • coldblow

      Hi Alf

      I think you have confused me in turn.

      David wrote: “But fiscal union, without an active central bank, won’t fix the problem.”


    The EU has underperformed for the past 30 yrs, yet not 1 Irish politican is in favour of dropping the euro, never mind leaving the union! The 5 wealthiest nations in europe in 5 yrs time will all be non euro members.Aus/NZ and Canada are racing ahead.

    • Deco


      Brazil has a lower unemployment rate than the EU.

      A remarkable acheivement considering the differences in demographics, fixed capital, and educational attainment, which are supposed to favour a lower unemployment rate in Europe. And even more shockingly, Brazil is headed by one leftist after another, from an underpreiveled background, yet business seems to be rocketting. In Europe the priveleged students of the 1960s and 1970s are all over the institutional framework, and the whole thing is a mess.

      Europe since the Treaty of Maastricht has been persistently underperforming economically. Low Euro interest rates have hid a massive underperformance in Italy, France, Spain, and Belgium.

    • 33square

      we do what we are told, because without our “friends”, we are nothing, unfortunately. what do we offer that no one else can?

      it reminds me of the ad with the man in the suit walking through the airport with the wind blowing in his hair saying what a great country we are. remember that?

      well most of the stuff he mentioned was baloney. we have a secluded airport other countries would like to use to transport between europe and the US, little else. bit of gas, that’s sold, coillte is either sold or will be (by an tree-shock), what remains is our highly skilled workforce that’s created such world renowned irish products such as… as…

      • bonbon

        Sounds like an echo from the past. Next you’ll be telling us to put the hat out, Beal Bocht.

        Shake off that British Empire underling waffle. Enough of Corca Dorcha.

  17. Malcolm McClure

    Seems that there be trouble in them there be trouble in them that hills. The IMF European chief has resigned .

    Anton’I owe’ Borges is a former Goldman Sachs vice chairman in London who had served as chairman of the Hedge Funds Standards Board prior to joining the IMF.
    Last month, Borges suggested publicly that the global lender could buy Spanish or Italian bonds alongside the euro zone’s bailout fund. He then quickly backed away from the idea, saying the IMF could only lend its funds to countries and could not intervene in bond markets directly.

    Christine Lagarde is now singing her swan song

    Oh! Oh! Antonio
    He’s gone away,
    Left me aloneio,
    All on my ownio.
    I want to meet him,
    With his new sweetheart,
    Then up will go Antonio
    And his ice cream cart!

    • bonbon

      Good one! Lagarde’s begging trip, ( Beal Bocht to the power of 10 ! ), collected small change. I’ll bet Borges banked on using China’s billions to buy trash paper. Well they saw through that.

      For such non-cooperation, along with Medvedev firing London’s man Finance Minister Kudrin, the british empire’s man Obama wants war.

  18. uchrisn

    If every ex Goldman Sachs employee was sacked from their policy making positions in the EU and US then the world would be a btter place.


    Folks, why are we are so down on “Capitalism” ? even the limited socialist version that has been practised in this country for too long, I read with longing David’s account of the fund managers sitting in the U.S paying their 15% Tax rates, how that compares with the obscene levels of taxation we suffer here,reduced as we are to a “pocket money society” where our incomes are raided and wasted by government in such areas as housing / health and education, why o why does it have to be like this, can we not be given control of our own earnings and allocate them as we choose on behalf of ourselves and our families ? I fear not, socialism has taken root too deeply. As for the same fund managers and markets dictating what happens in Europe, good on them, the politicians never will, unless forced as they are now they will continue to conspire with those who will never reform but continue to seek handouts and others to pay their bills.The solution my freinds is not to abandon Capitalism but to try it for a change.

    • CitizenWhy

      Fund managers = hedge funds – often make multi-millions per year and some make billions. That’s why they have a low tax rate. They are financial speculators.

  20. Deco

    Well somehow or other it always seems to be IBEC that devises the most utterly stupid ideas on how to fix the Irish economy.

    The latest is a real stinger. IBEC want to provide social welfare in a smart card, so that you will only be able to shop in the RoI with the money. Officially they are in favour of this because they are saying that there are people who are saving their social welfare.

    Specifically, this is aimed at people who are travelling to the North to try and buying cheaper materials for their own households.

    Now, this puts paid to the idea that IBEC are a free market advocacy body. Because here we have them again agitating for a policy that is effectively a rigging of the free market. It shows us clearly that IBEC know absolutely SFA about the Constitution, the citizen, the rights of the citizen, or the fact that market rigging against the common good, is wrong.

    Can we use the Anti-Terrorism legislation to force IBEC to be disbanded ? These unelected clowns are a threat to our democracy, and seem to think the idea way for democracy to work in this country, is if democracy is a rubber stamp for a state that is subservient to a corporatist agenda.

    And of course, in case you ever wondered, IBEC are suggesting this for everybody’s welfare. Green jersey and all of that sh1te.

    As I have beleived all along, in Ireland, the corporate interests want a powerful centralized bureacratic state – so that they can buy influence in it and then use that influence to fatten their margins. Another toxic legacy of PDs being at the cabinet table for much of the based twenty years.

    • Johno

      I read this website more than I write on it , but as soon as I saw an article about IBEC proposal on Welfare payments I knew you would be on the case! As always spot on Deco!

    • franta

      Believe or not Ireland is not the first EU country thinking about such social “smart” card. Czech Republic had already a tender guess what suited to one particular bank and it won so expect something similar here. They wanted all social payments going through this card including pensions. (One withdrawal for free anything else for fat fee including a transfer to an account). This is a smart economy. Smart way how to rob people…

    • Colin

      The trouble is so many people will do what IBEC suggest. Its a load of nationalist nonsense. Can someone take IBEC to the European court of Justice maybe? Can we get Chuck Feeney to open an office of public inquiry free of IRA Sympathising hacks like Frank Connolly?

      Deco, I don’t know what you do for a living, but I think you’d be the right man to lead a crusade against the Irish Axis of Evil, IBEC & ICTU.

    • CitizenWhy

      We have such a card in the USA. It restricts the kinds of good welfare and food stamps can buy (tobacco, alcohol, etc.). In some cases a specific brand of milk must be bought.

      Some people sell their food stamps for cash (at a discount) so they can buy the forbidden goods.

    • Thanks for this Deco.
      Thanks for the JP Morgan link below Georg

      It will be interesting to see how Irish people will respond to this because this would be nothing short of economic, psychological and emotional slavery. A reign of terror imposed on the weakest members of society to benefit a small number of Gombeen capitalists. It is sheer bloody minded and anti-human in my opinion and could only have been dreamed up by someone who is a sociopath. End of.

      What we have here is concrete proof that some of the minds of our corporate and political wannabe masters are fascist psychopaths and it’s frighening to think that after the demise of the PD crazies there are still many of them lingering in the woodwork. They are a menace to our society and need to be smoked out of their holes because if we subrcibe to their heinous ideology then it is only a matter of time before the rafters cave in. This is the ‘War Againt the People’ Georg talked about in a recent post and it is going at full throttle

      This is just another example of the Orwellian nightmare unfolding before my eyes. I read 1984 thirty years ago and believed it would never happen but now I am wide awake and seeing it accelerate into reality. It scares me knowing that most people want to be distracted by soap operas and sky sports when their democracy and freedoms are being stripped away by the day. If they are too stupid to even care then maybe you could argue that they deserve to suffer and let hell slap it into them but then I am not a Moral Philosopher. I am only raising the point to ask what it would really take to waken this country up. Or is it pointless to have any faith in Ireland and the Irish at all?

      Is Ireland the guinea pig for trying out the new technology before it spreads to other EU nation ‘states’ just like they did with the smoking ban?

      Ps. This week they changed from paper signing to pen tablet technology down at the Sligo dole office

      FFS Ireland. Open your eyes!

      • Deco

        I would love to know who got the contract for the new technology.

        In order to pay for it, they will cut the dole….

        • Deco. They will cut the dole because they won’t touch the Croke Park Agreement. Labour will protect them and we will continue being exposed to arrogant outbursts from people like Mary Harney telling us why they are worth their obscene pay offs and pensions

          The lives of the majority are being damaged to pay for the greed of a minority

          Now that they have hiked VAT and told us that this will affect the rich more than the poor we see that there is no limit to the level of arrogance and distain this government is capable of displaying in public

    • BUSINESS leaders calling for childrens allowence to be paid through SMART CARDS that can be only be used in IRISH Shops

  21. Gravy

    Do we remember our first real sovereign bribe ? Do we remember Jacques Delors the diminutive money bags who opened the flood gates with Albert Reynolds to allow our lands flow with milk and honey ?

    It seems so long ago and so recent and soon to be forgotten .

    Oh those days of excitement and we all learned to be Greedy .

    He will be written into the soon to be ‘The Anals of The Five Masters ‘. ….and Malachy will turn in his grave.

  22. Financial and social Cannibalism

    Forget the megalomaniac numbers, the billions and trillions flooding the news channels for a second, as surreal as it is, they are nothing but bits and bites in Computer systems. Forget for a moment the political propaganda theater that is performed on stage in all our countries every morning in the papers, and every evening in the main news channels.

    Take a few steps back and look at it from the outside, an alien perspective looking from outer space on planet Earth and what happened here in the post WWII, in these few decades only.

    We plundered the planet in rapacious ways, we poisoned our water, poisoned the air, poisoned the food chain, and we count more war victims than the entire WW2 has inflicted. Post colonial mindsets continued to perform colonial policies, just with other means, gunboats were no longer needed, the policies however, the stayed.

    The first people who ever entered space and saw this planet from above for the first time, they were stunned not only by the overwhelming impression of beauty, but fragility at the same time. Looking from such a distance, there is no doubt that we all share a very fragile and closed dynamic system.

    Earth science is still somewhat at the beginning of our journey towards a better understanding of the complexities this life providing system constitutes. Utilizing interdisciplinary approaches we started to slowly gain a better picture, however, we barely scratched the surface to come to more in depth quantitative insights.

    Geologists in particular are living in most exciting times. For the first time humankind witnesses the major shifts and changes that are happening in slow motion in our eyes, but in geological terms are unfolding in high speed. Oceanography also made baby steps in understanding the interconnectedness of our water planet. Glaciology continues to contribute to deeper insights on the climate change phenomenon. Geophysics are stunned by the speed at which a new continent is developing, braking away from Africa. What appears as a slow motion change in reality is happening very fast, to us it is slow motion as we only have a very short life span, but the deep ethical consequences of our insights in these changes are relevant and need to be applied for the sake of our own survival as a species.

    The ever increasing capacities of Tera Flop calculations, the best educated and talented brains on the planet, our combined efforts, resulted in really mind blowing advances in science and the understanding of system inherent interconnectedness.

    If you are interested in Earth Science, this link is a good start to get an impression:

    Humans are really a fascinating species that you can observe on this beautiful water planet. They are very busy, highly organised, adaptive, creative, but there is something else which is rather disturbing, a very high level of self destructiveness.

    If you push the button on your holographic terminal that can play back the history of the past 2000 years alone in fast forward motion, there are many destructive forces at play, it is a very violent history and the overwhelming impression is self destructiveness.
    You stop that somewhat disturbingly violent playback, sit back and look out of your spaceship, observing this blue diamond in space, and you begin to wonder.

    This planet is a paradise!

    This human species had developed a level of adaptiveness that is outstanding. Without all the technological advances of the past few decades, they were able to survive in the harshest arctic climate and in the excruciating heat of the deserts.

    At the same time they contributed to the devastation and potential destruction of that paradise. You start the engines of your intergalactic scientific space observer and leave the orbit, you decided to come back in 500 years to see how they developed.

    X X X X

    When the Dalai lama decided to meet once a year with the leading scientists of all cultures for a week to enter an interdisciplinary exchange of thoughts and ideas, he was guided by his strong developed curiosity. The meeting could not be more diverse, schools of thought that developed in different directions over the centuries, representatives of different belief systems that acknowledge the common more than the differences, I can tell you that I would give a lot to be a fly on the wall in this week long lasting exchange.

    What we are witnessing since a few years now has the qualities of financial and social cannibalism, the latter is a result of divide and conquer tactics that are applied by the players who steer sentiments in society, to re direct the anger and criticism, deflect it from those who were instrumental, and have people turn onto each other instead, as a result, the weakest in the link became the target. The former is not recognized as such by those who are instrumental in this global heist. The people who created the toxic financial instruments in the big banks, and who used them to enrich themselves beyond belief. They do not understand that this is a form of cannibalism they are executing, they have a ethical blind spot. This ethical blind spot is not a natural human phenomenon per se, but a trained one. Their ‘elitist‘ education provided them with this blind spot, it is system inherent and also makes them believe from early on that they are best equipped to steer our all future, they think of themselves as the global elite that is superior to others, and to the extreme their actions are even justified by a quasi religious fanaticism.

    The global OWS movement instinctively understands this, it is expressed in their blunt statement, we are the 99%, realizing the historical evidence of the 1% elite that is in power since generations.

    It is a diverse crowd of people that came together. People from all kinds of backgrounds, really, it could not be more diverse. The establishment is not happy, not a sausage, and they now started to react to the ever growing movement that took to the streets. From the Indignados in Spain, to OWS throughout the entire United States, Zurich, Frankfurt, and yes, even Dublin, what brings them together is more than the insight in certain aspects of the financial cannibalism that ruins democracies.

    By evicting Wallstreet, a desperate move by the establishment, they hope that it all will go away. I doubt it! The arrogance of power has no limitations and it will continue to drive this heist for as long as possible, risking complete social breakdown, accepting without hesitation civil war like situations in Greece and other countries. Their propaganda machines run around the clock, first marginalizing protestors, then taking side with them, now evicting them.

    Three very long years now we can observe the financial establishment and their whorish political class in their activities, slaughtering entire nations, substituting heads of governments with Banksters, and continuing their global heist in their endless Greed.

    One of these days, if you survive all these changes, your grand children may ask you what you have done in the days. I would want to be able to look them straight in the eyes and start telling the stories that lead to the great changes in all nations.

    The direction of these changes is only up to the 1% if we allow them to do this.

    The choices, as always, they are ours….

    • Deco

      A large part of OWS and the Occupy movement consists of graduates who cannot get jobs. Unemployment for college educated people in the US, and in Spain is frighteningly high.

      These are people who want to work.

      And the money is being taken from their parents, who are taxed to capacity – so that the ponzi schemes, and the ponzi schemers can keep up the asset bubble from outright collapse.

      The real economy is seized up, as a result of the effort to nurture a diseased asset mismanagement economy.

      • Colin

        Yes, Deco, but there’s graduates and then there’s graduates who have skills which can be of use to an organisation. Getting a degree in flower arranging or french literature is all very well, but who do you think is going to hire you with a degree like that?

        Universities have been getting away with murder in the last couple of decades, churning out graduates who offer the economy very little. I don’t blame the students as much, but many students go for “a good time” first and an exciting education comes maybe 5th down the list after nice student accomodation, good nightlife, freedom not to attend lectures and a plethora of lefty liberal rights activist movements.

        • Steaf35

          And then there are students who have a full time job, family,and a plethora of other commitments amid the current eco chaos; Good nightlife & freedom not to attend lectures do not enter the equation; Check the numbers for Frecnh Lit v Accounting or Science..!! Agree with Univs not upping their game re their large salaries; One lecturer that I have the unfortunate pleasure of listening to has a tendency to confuse instead of inspire; I’m lucky in that I have experience in the area; those around me dont and I end up having to clarify..!!!

          • The trend towards privatization of education, as can be observed in many European countries, needs to opposed by any means possible, it can not be allowed under any circumstances to continue, it is an essential move in their social engineering plans.

          • Colin

            Those are the 3%. I’m talking about the 97%.

            When you have permanent employment like a lecturer has, you can become casual and careless about your own performance. Then you can blame the students and call them thick compared to students 30 years ago if the results are poor. The oldest trick in the book by our educator classes.

    • bonbon


      After touring the area of the Fukushima nuclear Accident in Japan on Nov. 7, the usually consistently unholy “holy man” said we must think about the “huge gap between rich and poor,” and that wind and solar power are “too inefficient to put into realistic practice to meet the needs of fast-developing countries.” He noted that there are dangers from riding in cars, and from earthquakes, so we must not
      be one-sided in looking at nuclear. (Perhaps he has finally achieved some wisdom in his old age, having resigned his political leadership of the anti-China faction of Tibetans.)

      Contrast that with Dr. Schellnhuber CBE, of Potsdam, Merkel’s “scientific” advisor, and his Great Transformation, the WBGU, to reduce world population to 1 billion from 7 today to “save the planet” – more extreme than even Al Gore or Prince Phillip. He earned his Commander of the British Empire when Queen Elizabeth personally visited Germany and awarded the honor. He now gets the Bundeswehrdienstkreuz, An Army Service Honor. Solar and wind is not enough – we must completely decarbonize!

      Yes the choice is ours, we need 6000 GW of power immediately for our 7 billion, and heading to 25 billion we need massive R&D in high flux-density power, funded by a credit system replacing the dead monetarism (the Euro being merely a wart on that hog).

      • I imagine that the advertising campaign picture of the pope kissing an Imam made Tenzin laugh out loud.

        • bonbon

          Something changed his mind, not Benetton I’m sure. Maybe he saw the intent of his up-to-now supporters in Buckingham and D.C. The sheer horror Obama plans against China? The timing is significant, his resignation, and the Obama war buildup.

          I am sure there are ape howls in the corridors of power over this.
          Makes me laugh out loud!

          • I was waiting for this South pacific build up to happen. The increased influence of China from Africa to South America looking for a) oil b) agricultural land is not going down well with the USA. Resource scarcity is putting additional pressure on.Then again, why should we be concerned, he got it already, the nobel peace price.

      • Deco

        There is the option to run nuclear power on thorium instead of Uranium. It was used for the first nuclear power reactor in Pennsylvania, US. And also one was built in Germany (near Dresden, maybe).

        Anyway, the “problem” with thorium is that it does not generate material that is useful in bombmaking. But Uranium does. Therefore in the Cold War, so as to ensure a “sufficient supply” of weapons grade material, the nuclear industry had to use uranium as fuel.

        Thorium also produces much less waste, and more energy. And it is more stable in the reactors.

        Hopefully, there will be a switch to this in future years, as it would be better than Unarium or worse the MOX fuel type installations which are nothing but headaches for humanity.

        • Deco

          The worst fuel is MOX. It is a disaster. Really it is waste recycling disguised as a nuclear power generation process.

        • bonbon

          India has a Thorium program for well known reasons. And by the way decommissioned weapons plutonium is a very good fuel.

          Fukoshima hysteria broke out mainly in Germany, I believe well out of the reach of the tsunami which killed 28,000. Why is this? Uranium or induced madness. Induced schizophrenia does indeed cause headaches. Switzerland caught the infection, and now France, the most active uranium power country worldwide has cought the virus in the election. Japan’s prime minister was dumped when he tried to shutdown 58 reactors! This is the only country to have been subjected to nuclear terror by Harry S Truman.

          So, Ireland needs now 10GW, high flux-density energy, not windy economics, to be a productive high tech country.

      • NRC investigates reactor coolant system leak at Brunswick plant

  23. CitizenWhy

    There are three policies that could be adopted:

    1. Quantitative easing, that is pumping money into big zombie bank. This is being done, directly and by stealth, as in the US. This action does not require a central government.

    2. Austerities. Being done, along with QE.

    3. Stimulus, that is, government spending on jobs, mainly in the private sector. Not being done. In fact governments are destroying jobs.

    Can an economy grow, that is, generate more spending and more jobs, using only austerity and QE? Not likely.

  24. CitizenWhy

    There are four policies that could be adopted:

    1. Quantitative easing, that is pumping money into big zombie bank. This is being done, directly and by stealth, as in the US. This action does not require a central government.

    2. Austerities. Being done, along with QE.

    3. Stimulus, that is, government spending on jobs, mainly in the private sector. Not being done. In fact governments are destroying jobs.

    Can an economy grow, that is, generate more spending and more jobs, using only austerity and QE? Not likely.

    4. Debt forgiveness. Probably combined with nationalizing banks and wiping out investor equity and the banks’ debt.

  25. gizzy

    @ John Allen, Adam Byrne Coldblow. Can you not get a point over without insulting generalisations. A lot of Irish people are neither fat or stupid and some even eat fruit and veg. Well at least you guys do so that’s a start.

  26. Devaluation to Zero

    Come to think about it , it solves many anomalies .Subsequently create a new currency without recourse to the old currency .Re-denominate all Gov pensions and salaries to basics .

    Then we can say ‘ Devaluation the Leveller’.

  27. midnightrider

    The dog sitting on the nail story/metaphor says it all I think (cited in another thread not so long ago). Until things get bad enough for the 99% to rise up and depose the 1%, and, among other things, until we can go back to Glas-Steagall and proper regulation or forward to something better we are going to head further down the toilet into the USofE and then into whatever the NWO has planned. Of course a world war might come before or afterwards but regardless – make no mistake – as has already been written above, poverty is the current plan, that to be followed by death/depopulation. So until we the ordinary come of age and take responsibility, the elites will continue to foist problem-reaction-solution situations and we will continue to bay for them to send us further into oblivion.

  28. TheGermanPublican

    Frightenenly! (delivered ..)

  29. wills


    Germany are onto the gameplay.

    They understand that an insider crony network pillaged the euro in full knowledge they would get bailed out by Germany and ECB printing free money to bail em all out.

    Germany cottoned on to this scam and are not playing ball it now seems to be the case.

    Why should they bail out an insider crony network creaming the euro.

  30. More on coup d’état ….

    In case you missed it, the new head of Deutsche Bank supervisory board is Paul Ashleitner coming from Allianz Achleitner was:

    - 1988-1989 Goldman Sachs New York, Vicepresident, Mergers and Acquisitions

    - 1989 1994 Goldman Sachs International, London,Executive Director INvestment Banking

    - 1994-1999 Goldman Sacg & Co. OHG Frankfurt, Managing Director and Partner of Goldman Sachs Group

    So, we have Draghi at the head of ECB, Monti in Italy, Papadimos in Athens, and Achleitner now in Deutsche Bank, and this is just the tip of the iceberg.

    • and some people still think that this is a crisis…

    • bonbon

      Do not forget the military angle – Greece’s sudden replacement of the entire Chiefs of Staff, Italy’s new defense minister from NATO NMC. So Goldman-Sachs working hand in hand with the military.
      Outside the EU, but to notice, Turkey also replaced its entire chiefs of staff some months ago, is also in conflict with Syria.

      “Coup d’etat” is close.

      I would watch any moves like this in Spain, Portugal, even Eire, France and Germany. France probably has no senior resistance – it went after Libya with Obama.

      GS is nominally Wall Street, so the problem is not limited to the EU, or Euro. Obama’s Geithner is also GS. So what about US military resistance ?
      The consensus of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, CENTCOM, and all of the other top military brass that the Israelis must be told, in absolute clear terms, that any military attack on Iran is thoroughly unacceptable and would likely lead to world war withn a 72 hour window, was refused by Obama. The Pacific buildup in the Philippines, Australia (see his speech at Darwin) is a clear provocation for China, the target. Syria, a Libya replay, Iran, an Iraq replay, are only preparations.

      We have a replay if 1932, on a massive scale, the actors roles all scripted. Amazing they call it free will! Kenny must have the suspicion his very movements are programmed.
      Let’s disrupt the play with FDR’s Glass-Steagall, changing the game. But first Obama must be impeached – anyone who inflames the world like this is obviously insane. Amendment 25, section 4 now.

      • redriversix

        +1 Bonbon

        I have been studying the military aspect of this crisis for a long time.

        In opinion we have or are in the middle of a financial “coup d’etat.”

        I believe the people have become immune to such terms as crisis,military action, collateral damage and casualty lists due to the constant media threat of “terror attacks and the peddling of fear on a daily basis.

        3 billion people are “malnourished” or are starving today due to policy’s enacted and supported by world leaders.This is their way of “culling the herd”.

        Slavery by debt preoccupies people and controls the population to question nothing.

        Over the next 6 months,we are going to witness historic and perhaps frightening changes to our civilization.


      • Yeah well, this build up can be also perceived from a different angle, imposing a haircut by other means? The grand area doctrine is in full swing, the unmatched military might of the USA is the last joker the dying empire will play, this makes it so extremely dangerous.

        • redriversix

          Hi Georg R

          When I was growing up in the Countryside years ago , farmers had a “saying” they would use when dealing with livestock or any difficult situation,

          “beware of the kick from a dying ass”…..


        • bonbon

          The unmatched military might is put at the disposal of the British Empire, never mentioned by Stratfor by the way, by Obama. To stop this impeach him now – insanity is indisputable – a nuclear conflict will kill billions. Amendment 25 Section 4 is there for that very purpose. Even Bush reconciled with Putin in a similar skirmish – some trace of a soul, but Obama has none.

          General Nikolai Makarov, the chief of the General Staff of the Russian armed forces, stated today that “I cannot rule out that, in certain circumstances, local and regional armed conflicts could grow into a large-scale war, possibly even with nuclear weapons.” Addressing the Russian Public Chamber, a Kremlin advisory body which includes numerous policy heavyweights, Makarov stated that “Russia could be involved in a conflict where weapons of mass destruction could be used… The possibility of local armed conflicts virtually along the entire perimeter of the [Russian] border has grown dramatically.”
          Makarov was referring specifically to NATO’s expansion eastward since the collapse of the Soviet Union — including efforts to get Ukraine and Georgia to join NATO — as well as the U.S.-led plan to place missile defense systems along the Russian border. But they are as well an umistakeable policy message in the context of the rapidly escalating crises in Iran, Syria and elsewhere.
          The Russian warning is receiving wide coverage in the west, with an AP wire running on the front page of today’s {Washington Post}, and the {Drudge} website featuring this story prominently.
          The English-language {Russia Today} ran a report on it under the headline “Border Alert: Nuke war risk rising, Russia warns,” and RIA Novosti’s headline was “Russia Could Be Involved in a Nuclear Conflict.”

          What’s already dead is the British Empire financial system since July 2007 in fact. All attempts to resuscitate are killing us. Now they are going for it! And Obama is their man.

          • Thursday’s successful Mach 8 (2400 miles/minute) test of a hypersonic missile adds to the picture.

            The vehicle flew a non-ballistic glide trajectory at hypersonic speed to the planned impact location at the Reagan Test Site. Space, air, sea, and ground platforms collected vehicle performance data during all phases of flight. The data collected will be used by the Department of Defense to model and develop future hypersonic boost-glide capabilities.
            The AHW program is managed and executed by the US Army Space and Missile Defense Command/Army Forces Strategic Command program office in Huntsville, Ala. The booster system and glide vehicle were developed by Sandia National Laboratories and the thermal protection system by the US Army Aviation and Missile Research Development and Engineering Center.

            The Department of Defense is using AHW to develop and demonstrate technologies for Conventional Prompt Global Strike (CPGS). As part of the CPGS effort, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency [DARPA] conducted boost-glide flight tests in April 2010 and August 2011, results from which were used in planning the AHW flight test.

        • bonbon

          The hypersonic test, failed up to now, has “dual use”. The entire question of hypersonic ignition at suborbit altitude might just be solved. Hypersonic air transport anyone? Great for long distance travel.
          Other side precise delivery of nuclear weapons without a contrail. Very provocative as long as Obama is in the White House. He shuts down all US manned space travel, and promotes this? Shows the psychopathy of the empire’s man.

    • Malcolm McClure

      Georg: This tweet from Brian Lucey is relevant:
      “A really important letter to the Bundesbank from a really serious economist here.”

      Jens Weidemann is head of the Bundesbank and protégé of Merkel. He is ex-IMF, so he knows all the main players.

      Charles Wyplosz is also a Euro-heavyweight. Professor of International Economics at the Graduate Institute, Geneva; where he is Director of the International Centre for Money and Banking Studies.

      • Thank you Malcolm, I do not perceive it as a very important letter.

        JW is known to have been placed there as a yes-man, his own Prof. wrote an open letter before he was appointed, questioning his capabilities.

        With the ongoing Virtualization of money, freedom and citizen rights are being systematically dismantled. This Heist is finished when Central Bankers announce the private ownership of Gold to be illegal.

        This will be the point in history where the total expropriation of the middle class has been successfully finished. I am sure you noted the peak in CB Gold purchases. This point is not too far away.

  31. and some people still think austerity packages are a tool to fight this ‘crisis’…

  32. When’s the next Wobble , John?

    • Hi Furrylugs

      Glad to see your presence return to the world stage once more .Keep up the appearance.

      From the cauldron of Macbeth on Dun Aengus bubbles will rise from ‘ Wednesday , 30th November and climax BLACK MONDAY 12th December 2011 .

      This Climax will be exciting with lots of surprises and preceding from the FULL MOON on the 10th .

      What a week end that will prove to be.

      Will anyone be travelling then ? Are there any major sports fixtures on then ?

      What day is the Budget ?

      Merkel will wobble physically and bulls will interlock horns ie The Troika Taureans Kenny , Noonan & Gilmore

      • Hi John
        I hadn’t gone away. Just got busy over the past 18 months putting the advice on this blog into action. Which hasn’t gone too badly at all, TG.
        Good to see David biting back. No-ones going to come out of this unscathed but shooting the messenger seems begrudgery on an appalling level.
        I can almost hear the decision being taken amongst the G-Sucks apologists;
        “We really need the Irish to deal with McWilliams. He’s too near the truth. He needs clipping”.
        Mind you, we spoke about the lone voice 2 years ago and the risk of exclusion by the establishment.

        Ceist Eile.

        When an unelected leader and system is foisted on a sovereign democracy, is that not what used to be called a Dictatorship?
        We appear to be witnessing the rise of the Fintator, parachuted in to protect global vested interests.

  33. mick36

    I believe that the situation is being cleverly orchestrated . Europe will brought closer together than ever before, the stage is set for a world government , just look at the two who have been PLACED in government in Italy and Greece , will we see someone lime this arriving into Ireland ? This is technocracy and these are the people who all of a sudden will have the answers on how to solve our problems , appearing lime savours with all the answers Europeans will be delighted to do what they say , ” out of chaos order” . The same thing is on the cards for the US aswell . The world is being run by the banking families who sit on top with a goal of a one world government , a massive Depopulation excercise through the use of manipulated foods ( GMO) etc. I have opened my eyes and when you do the lies being spouted around by the mainstream media everyday would make you laugh if it all wasn’t so sad . I believe that Ron paul is one of the few people left in American politics who can change things , look at his policies for change , also look at the way he is treated by the media in the states and then tell me the whole thing isn’t controlled . Central banks are the core of the problem globally , money is fixed by central banks And they do this by manipulating interest rates and printing more money from thin air . The money always ends up in the hands of those who haven’t worked for it . The dollar has lost 96% of it’s value since the gold reserve ended . The world is changing boys and girls and it might be a good idea to make a little plan for the road ahead .

    • mediator

      The only plan is to trust in god and live the gospel

    • bonbon

      Ron Paul does discuss the impeachment of Obama, the necessary first step. Problem is senior Dem’s who will not move on this now citing election tactics, or pure fear. The international financial oligarchy have their man Obama fully primed to do that depopulation, a nuclear conflict with Asia. This is all openly stated, their target is 1 billion. Why wait for the media to dutifully print the obituary of 6 billion? Impeaching Obama is the way to go.

    • 33square

      it took mere months after irelands acceptance of the lisbon treaty (via the joke that was the second referendum) for “the eurozone crisis” to start. they have us over a barrel now lads, our only hope is for some lube to ease the friction :D

      for christs sake!.. they made our taoiseach go over with his proposed budget and made sure we all saw it… it wasn’t signed… i’ll tell you why… because the krauts hadn’t agreed to it yet…

      i’ll tell you this… we will beg for world government, it won’t happen till we beg and for that to happen, there will be pain… much more than there is now…

      bitchslap @ the voters who flip flopped

    • 33square

      one question: what does David McWilliams make of the one world government proposition?

      Oh and @mick36, overt depopulation began proper > 11 years ago, have you been asleep?

  34. Stiofan

    Dear David, if the banksters sell national bonds between themselves at steep discounts, and then a universe of uneducated journalists (who studied journalism not finance) screams in every rag some rubbish about 7 percent bond spreads, I could not care. Their gambling odds on national debt are irrelevant. This is not a science fiction movie, where some Ebola style ‘contagion’ engulfs a hapless population causing the audience to reel in horror. Please don’t use the word contagion except to describe the word technocrat. You have no reason to do the biding of the propagandists.

    Allow me to re-write your words: ‘It is crucial to accept that the financial markets are not angels (or even essential I add), and they DID cause the crisis, as up until recently they were happy to finance the governments of Italy and Spain, as well as France.’ Their sudden and conscious decision to attack these countries using what the Max Keiser calls an act of ‘financial terrorism’ is the seminal event. Again, ‘Notwithstanding the power of the markets (which is not controlled), the core of the problem is an enormous inconsistency at the heart of the’ USA. The USA is wreaking havoc upon Europe in order to eliminate a potential competitor. Europe is responding, in a rather clever manner disguised as a shambles. I have frequently seen this tactic succeed. In my opinion this is the final battle of WWII and the time has arrived for the USA to finally leave Europe. Their post WWII model is a failure and is completely unsuitable for the EU. We will can / will / have developed our own. BOND TRADERS OUT would by my clarion call.

    I found a discussion between Markus Kerber and James Turk very illuminating. It persuades me that a great battle is under way between the Brussels Putsch (Barossa, van Rompuy, Trichet, Rehn, Legarde and Co.) and Berlin and that a return to the agreed arrangements for the ECB is essential for continued German support. Germany rejected the idea that the ECB is a fiscal tool. For myself, I place fiscal union at long odds and predict no implosion of the Euro, as the only thing that destroys currency is uncontrolled expansion of liquidity and destruction of value. I oppose the use of the ECB as purchaser of state debt (last resort the journalists call it, without understanding). I oppose the leverage and risks involved. The risk is loss of democracy.

    Then what is on the cards now? If we ask instead, what should happen now to achieve a good outcome? I suggest that national debt no longer be traded on bond markets. That will starve the bond traders in Greenwich and Connecticut. National debt is not suitable for gamblers’ habits. The game (a.k.a. market) is never fair or just for citizens. The role of the ECB must be confirmed to exclude the funding of national debt. A new clearing house to be established for that. All EMU national bonds must be held to maturity. Those who wish to ‘invest’ in EMU nations will be denied their urge to speculate (gamble). Summary? National debt of EMU members consolidated, relocated and transubstantiated. Debt defines its own terms and, while not written off, will be honoured with the well-being of citizens in primacy. Those who need to gamble must go elsewhere. Politics is a necessary tool for the redefinition of circumstances. This does not necessitate leadership, as so many claim. It makes essential an ability to review reality, address it maturely, care for and act in the best interests of ‘partners’, and recall the (still valid) reasons that the EMU and EU exist. Leadership requires democracy.

    David, please stop telling us about bond yields. There is no ‘run on the French government’ as French bond yields spiked. A run on a state is not possible by definition. Nations do not buy and sell each others debt, having plenty of their own at home. Banks incorporated in Ireland are not departments of state. These bankster gamblers are opposed to the well being of citizens and their national parliaments / governments. BOND TRADERS OUT.

  35. Malcolm McClure

    Further to Brian Lucey’s link above, it today seems that Draghi is taking the bull by the horns and going for broke, buying bonds in bust banks; in essence making ECB Lender of last resort in defiance of the treaty, whilst simultaneously denying that he is doing any such thing. He must have attended a Jesuit school of economics.

    • bonbon

      Hyperinflation – here we go. Soon $1 billion for a coffee!

      See WSJ : Nov 17 – While London puts on the press for the ECB to run a Fed-style “Big Bazooka” bailout routine, “Some in the markets are suspecting that there has been an informal agreement for the ECB to literally start money-printing,” said David Mann, Standard and Chartered’s head of research for the Americas. “If that’s the case, you’ll see ECB mass buying of bonds.”
      Among the numerous high-risk scams already underway to make sure the ECB keeps printing Monopoly money, today’s Wall Street Journal’s lead article, “Banks Face Funding Stress,” reports that European banks are so desperate to scare up collateral to hand
      over to the ECB in order to get further loans, that they are engaging in “behind-the-scenes swapping of assets among financial institutions,” called liquidity swaps, which “could heighten risk across Europe’s already fragile financial system.”
      What’s going on, says the Journal, is that the bankrupt banks are “transferring illiquid assets… to investment banks or insurance companies,” strongly suggesting that these companies may have been set up as shells by the bankrupt banks themselves. These shell companies take the illiquid assets — including
      Mortgage Backed Securities! — at a discount, and give the originating bank government bonds in exchange, which are then trundled over to the ECB to use as collateral for some fresh cash.
      The Journal reports that French and Italian banks in particular are deeply into this scam, including Credit Agricole, which is “bundling together large numbers of mortgages and other loans into asset-backed securities that the ECB will accept.”

    • bonbon

      London School of Economics more like.

  36. gizzy

    Austerity to bailout banks really works if you want economic stagnation whilst still not having functioning banks

    ‘This year is now on track to be the worst year for mortgages since 1971 a year when there were 11782 mortgages issued.’

    ‘fifteen counties without single house build registration’

    ‘nama to take bad debt charge in 2011 accounts.’


  37. wills

    Really positive to see the German authorities sayn’ no to the criminal finance class press ganging the Germans into using the ECB as a ponzi get out for pirates scallywags cheats and scam artists.

  38. A nation drugged!

    One in five are on happy pills.

    I am not astonished, and this goes hand in hand with my own personal observations when i lived in the USA, a nation steered by fear.

  39. Deco

    As the state moves from one crisis to another, one man has firmly decided that there are more important things to do. And this time he is not talking about calling his fellow TDs after characters in the Muppet Show.

    Gilmore is 100% correct. Mick Wallace should not be allowed turn the Dail into a Muppet show.

  40. Change your Earth desktop background focus!

    I did….

    This situation is getting increasingly disturbing!

  41. PIMCO’s El-Erian

    But growth, while necessary, is insufficient by itself, given today’s high unemployment and the extent to which income and wealth inequalities have increased. Hence the third dynamic: the West is being challenged to deliver not just growth, but “inclusive growth,” which, most critically, involves greater “social justice.”,/url>

    • redriversix

      Evening Georg

      Well,I think we are finally seeing the pieces of a jigsaw coming together.

      The complete surrender of our sovereignty proved yet again with the Bundestag seeing our budget before we do.
      Perhaps people are already planning to go North for their Xmas shopping,even those who may not have considered it may now do so even before new vat rate is implemented.

      Widespread indirect taxation which according to Minister Noonan will not effect job security or job creation.

      The collapse of our social fabric is happening before our eyes,Families torn apart by stress and fear and arguments over money.
      Widespread increases in the use of anti-depressants and alcohol to “ease the pain”children wondering whats wrong with Mummy or Daddy and begging them to stop fighting.

      The EU/ECB has no response or solution,all they do is “kick the can down the road”even after 3 years and now they are beginning to bicker and fight amongst each other as the realize they are pawns in a greater game.

      Merkel realizing that maybe the “Conspiracy theorists are not crazy after all and that she has been played like a fine German piano.

      Military builds up across the world

      Nations beginning to think like isolationists again.

      No one in the media draws attention to the plight of the people at the bottom of the barrel and how they live in fear every day.While the NWO congratulates itself on the back for a financial coup well done.The second phase of their campaign is beginning in earnest soon and that’s when we will see true evil.

      There will be no more American Presidents,only a spokesperson for the Banks and the Military industrial complex who shall control what the U.S.A will and will not do.

      Ron Paul will follow the same fate as Obama if ever elected.

      I am lost as too how to bring any of the powers that by to try and come to their senses and wipe the world debt slate clean and start over,I fear they will only accept a full scale War to reshape their imperial desires and secure the race for resources.

      Maybe the “dehumanization”of a generation and the lure of more wealth will allow them to use Nuclear Weapons.
      How is so hard for politicians to ask hard questions or think for themselves or look “outside the box”.

      We should as a people have a General payment strike,pay no Banks or Government taxes en-masse including parking or speeding fines for three months or union dues were applicable for that matter.
      Hit them were it hurts, they hit us without a care in the world and react smugly when queried.

      They may put 5 people in jail for this but they can’t put 50,000.

      That is the only suggestion I have as I am starting to despair.

      And finally,”for fuck’s sake ,take care of yourselves and your families first,if you do not have a family…find one to help”

      Take care


      • Evening RR6,

        You suggest civil disobedience on a massive scale, and I think you are right to suggest it! Protest can only change so much, and it requires massive protests, on a much larger scale than anything we have seen to date to bring the changes required. I am not hopeful on that part.

        We live in times of captured right wing politicians who create nothing but spin and lies in their daily media bombardment. The propaganda output is immense, and the lies are getting more ruthless.

        I am convinced that we witness the meltdown of the global financial system! All that talk about growth and debt sustainability has turned into a farce, it is utterly risible.

        The real question is how do we avoid global escalation of military conflict?

        The global Bankster coup is more than evident by now. Sovereign states are dismantled, Prefects are being put in place to force the expropriation of citizens.

        I am considerably concerned on the developments of the past few weeks. They can be seen as strategic preparations, this build up is highly strategic and should trigger the UN security council to be called to the table.

        Crazy times!

        • redriversix

          “how do we avoid global escalation of military conflict”?

          I have no idea, Georg R…..
          The 5 permanent members of the U.N security Council are the U.S,U.K CHINA RUSSIA AND FRANCE…..

          There is very little doubt as to how much contempt Israel has for the U.N..and many other nation’s manipulate the U.N for their own benefit,you know the examples as well as anyone

          I suggest if these members met for dinner,it would be a very tense affair.. !

          The W.H.O is bought and paid for as is the World Bank by big business Banking and large Corporation’s.

          Over the last 10 years,the U.N appear’s to have lost any real “teeth ” it had for reducing the risk of conflicts or being able to enforce “genuine” resolution’s.

          They have been influenced over a period of time by the appointment/insertion of senior staff who agree with NWO/ P.N.A.C.

          After careful consideration over the last several day’s , I believe the only thing these people care about is money and control that is why I repeat my call for a General financial strike,lasting three month’s as outlined in above post.

          This budget our finance minister proposes is going to have a massive negative effect on our people and what’s left of our economy.I believe the same effect for many European countries enacting the Austerity cuts and preparing for budget’s over the next 6 month’s.

          To put it mildly they are indeed “Crazy times ”

          Financial strike..NOW


          • bonbon

            Won’t work. Impeaching Obama is the single and only way to avoid nuclear war. Nothing else will work until he is sent to play basketball somewhere well away from policy. Every attempt is doomed to failure, transaction tax, OWS, Glass-Steagall, which would all work very well otherwise.
            This is a test of civilization, has it the guts to survive. The US Constitution provides legal means, used against Nixon for example. The case is documented as I have posted links here.
            With Obama impeached, Kenny and Merkel etc will behave completely differently. As long as he remains these actors simply follow a sript to hell. Notice the predictable automatism of each step.

        • redriversix

          good link Pauldiv.

          As Mcguire points out in his article “New Beginnings” are not out to destroy the financial system ,just want justice for ordinary people and to level the playing field.

          I Believe The financial system is destroying itself from the inside anyway.

          Financial Strike…NOW !!!!


          • Thanks RR6. I posted another link regarding Mortgage Strikes in Ireland for you. Spread the word

            I like the idea of a Barrister doing pro bono work to help ordinary people struggling with crippling mortgage debt

            This could be the nuclear weapon the Irish people have been looking for to deal with the banks however time will tell

      • Barrister urges mortgage holders to take a stand against the banks

        Irish Independent

  42. tony_murphy

    David, from what I can see, you are in love with the EU, I’d like to hear your thoughts on the takeover by the globalist banksters of Greece and Italy. Also, it’s obvious you think that central planning and central banking system are something you feel ordinary people should support ( i don’t and never will), and the never ending bond(age)s and printing currency to pay us fools in. How does this reconcile with your views on the international globalist banker occupation of sovereign countries

    What is your opinion on real proper money, money that can be trusted and not used by phony governments. Money that has real value, is a real store of wealth, such as gold and silver

    You have a platform in Ireland, and I would like to hear exactly, for once and for all, what you are about

  43. Alan42

    Ben bernanke is a expert on the Great Depression and he will do everything in his power to avoid another one .

    What led to the rise of Hitler ? And what is ingrained in the minds of Germans ? And what will they do to avoid another one ?

    Answer : Printing money .

    • Deco

      At this stage I have a serious question to ask concerning Bernanke,

      Is Ben Bernanke an expert in anything ???

    • bonbon

      Helicopter Ben is causing most of the trouble with QE1, QE2, but QE3 was blocked. In other words printing money.
      1923 Weimar Hyperinflation was caused by Versailles debt payments calculated to far outweigh any possibility of economic means. Today derivative banking started by Inter-Alpha in 1972 after Nixon killed Bretton Woods, and the demand to pay this toxic debt with no economic means to do so. Sure Berlin sees this.
      The Great Depression was stopped by FDR, and ‘copter Ben will never allow Glass-Steagall again. Obama will not override the FED or GS.
      We have a deadly problem now, Obama trying to start WWIII provoking China and Russia.

      What will D.C. do to avoid a nuclear disaster triggered by Obama? Look at Congress- it will not move, neither the Senate! They have legal powers, Amendment 25-4, and the case is ready.

  44. mick36

    I must have been asleep , examples of proven Depopulation events in the last 11 years?

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