March 7, 2013

Debt deal is jiggery pokery dressed up as a game changer

Posted in Irish Independent · 92 comments ·
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The news that the State has secured a deal to push out Ireland’s debt repayments represents a victory for the Government’s – or more accurately the EU’s – giant “delay and pray” strategy. The deal would see the repayment of a significant chunk of the €40bn troika loan pushed out for another 15 years. What we have executed is in effect a “gentleman’s default”. We won’t pay what we said we’d pay and the creditors won’t get what they expected to get and we’ll see how we are all fixed after a dozen or so years. Let’s look at the details to see what this means.

It appears that €10.5bn of EFSF/EFSM debts, which were due to be repaid in 2016, will now be kicked out to some future date. This will ease repayments. There was going to be a dramatic spike in the amount of money due in the next few years. With the economy fragile at best, there was no guarantee that the Irish State would manage to squeeze more cash out of us. From the EU’s perspective, a fresh Irish bond crisis must be avoided at all costs. Yet a bond crisis may have been the most sensible outcome. Debts that can’t be paid won’t be paid.

Maybe it would have been more effective to recognise this now and extract a real concession on principle rather than postponing the problem for another few years – but more on that point later.

There is another €18bn owed to the IMF which falls due in 2020 and, presumably, this will be the focus of the new negotiations.

When we take a bit of altitude, we can see that the EU needs a victory in Ireland because its entire “austerity works” strategy is based on Ireland squeezing itself out of the bailout next year. This overlooks the fact that the term “exiting the bailout” only means postponing debt repayments in order to incur yet more debt and fresh borrowing next year.

The EU top brass also know, considering what happened in Italy last week, that austerity doesn’t win elections or popular legitimacy. In fact, the opposite is the case. Remember, the man the financial markets and the EU wanted to win the Italian elections, Mario Monti, won less than 10pc of the vote.

In the strange alliance that has emerged in Europe, which pits the interests of the EU/bond market/establishment civil servants against the will of the people, the new triumvirate of barrow boys, hedge funds and unelected policy makers, is doing whatever it can to force through its agenda.

As a result, we have the bizarre and inconsistent spectacle of the EU – which has just slapped caps on bankers’ pay because of greed – exalting the wisdom of the same bankers and relying on the sagacity of the bond markets to justify their actions.

How many times have you heard people in Brussels and Merrion Street refer to the fall in Irish bond yields as if this fall represents the totality of the economic picture in Ireland?

The fact that much store is put in the opinions or positions of financial markets – like the bond market – ignores the fact that it was the financial markets’ inability to assess risk that caused the bubble in the first place. These were the same guys who financed Irish banks up to the very last minute, who drove up stock prices to stratospheric highs and who have revealed a profound inability rather than ability to assess hazard.

So having failed so miserably to predict the future on almost every measure, we are now supposed to prostrate ourselves in the face of their wisdom?

So what does all this mean? These types of deals whereby everyone tries to buy time are regularly described as “kicking the can down the road”. But what if the truer metaphor is “rolling a giant snowball down the hill”?

What if we are simply storing up problems and, rather than facing facts now, we shove the responsibility on to our children?

Supporters will counter the “future generations” argument with the response that while we may be storing up more problems ahead, isn’t it just human nature and good economics to kick things out a bit? Don’t we all tend to do this when in a bind, we buy a bit of time, we try to sort things out and hope time will heal?

Supporters will point to the fact that the creditor in this case accepts that he will not be paid back when he thought he would and the debtor is given a bit more time. The logic of this argument is that if the financial markets are prepared to back these types of deals and finance the State, surely this is the best option?

I can buy this line of thinking except for the fact that what hasn’t been mentioned in all this is the economy itself. The Irish economy may emerge from the bailout unreformed and weaker, unlike the original plan. The “insiders” – those with a stake in society – have moved to protect their interests despite austerity. The “outsiders” – those without a stake such as the young and unemployed – have truly shouldered the burden.

In the end the country won’t be more competitive, but less competitive because the people who want to, and can, make a difference don’t have the capital or are simply not here anymore. Capital is still tied up in a dysfunctional banking system and the mass emigration of the young, educated population weakens growth prospects in the years ahead.

In contrast, the problems in the economy – such as carrying a big expensive public sector with a smaller tax base, carrying huge mortgage arrears, which is still destroying domestic demand – have not been addressed.

SO, like George Bush declaring victory in Iraq prematurely, victory is declared but there is no real victory at all. All that has happened is the debt pack is reshuffled to avoid a principal default but the economy is not just fragile but less able to take on the challenges of the globalisation.

In a sense this might be the worst of all worlds – a fictitious victory based on kicking the debt problem out to future generations, high fives from Europe, slaps on the back from the financial markets, a herd that will change their minds in an instant, while locally, the same old snouts remain in the trough.

That outcome would truly be hard to take. The crisis and the opportunity it presents to really change is wasted, the bill is given to the next generation and a bit of financial jiggery pokery is dressed up as a game changer when, in fact, nothing has changed.


  1. Quite right David. Nothing changes. Debt is still owed. No debt relief provided to the working (workless) population.
    Bankers protecting their own at the expense of the rest of us.

    There needs to be a radical change in the money system and the debt based fiat currency sent the way of the Dodo.

    The international physical market will impose the eventual change. Sound money is on the way via the Chinese, Russians etc.

  2. Bamboo

    David, it is good to see a perspective from the other side of the world.
    “the world is not waiting for Ireland to get its act together”
    Indeed, most of the world probably doesn’t know what, who or where Ireland is.
    If you mention Ireland to young people on the other side of the world, they flaunt around their knowledge of Ireland. It is part of England and more importantly – the town where West Life lives. And the older generation are generally more detailed in their knowledge – Roy Keane and Padraig Harrington, River dance are the first names they mention, followed by the pope, Ruud Gullit and Marco van Basten. Not to mention the war between Catholics and Protestants.

    You’re right. The world is not waiting for Ireland to get its act together.

  3. Bamboo

    Sorry, this was comment was meant for the previous article.

  4. 5Fingers

    If had the control these financial boys had, I would certainly over heat the system as much as I could and make a killing on shares rocketing and commissions. On the inevitable crash, I would be shorting like crazy and making loads on the way down AND collecting commissions on transactions AND consultancy fees from Governments who think I am brilliant.

    These financial guys understand hazard very well and leverage it very well. They are not worried about “economies”. They milk it on the big ups and downs. Central banks and government institutions did nothing to stop it because it would lead to electoral disapproval. The level of control we are expecting is equivalent of coitus interruptus.

    Understand the psychology and the rest is trivial. It’ll happen again. Once we are enthralled, we are about to be £$%^ed again. These guys know there is nlittle will power and the trick is to get it all going again. 15 years is a long time to go without a another 5hag :).

  5. Puschkin the Black and White Cat

    Yes , Agree. It’s a device to keep the “status quo”. By postponing the crash as long as possible the “insiders” will not face any pressure for urgent reform. We’ll have more meaningless “Croke Parks” and more huge TD’s salarys. The Dail mantra “We got a deal so all is well, lets keep on at the trough and cement our privileged positions, no reform needed here !!!. We’er great lads, Thank You”

    I got sick when I heard about this “deal”. In reality it will place us in never ending hardship for at least 150 years, this is the death of Nation by a billion cuts.

    • Meaningless is the keyword

      It’s time for legitimate mass protest that will echo around the globe. We need 500,000 on the streets of Dublin and I think such numbers could be achieved and send a real message to those who have more dangerous weapons that the British ever had. Working class, middle class and all. On the One Road. Together

      We have become complacent and have forgotten that freedom is not gained from laziness. The opposite is the case and now we are all prisoners or might bloody well be for the difference it makes

      I am not ‘republican’ and am conservative by nature but I believe that if the majority of the people want change then change should come

      The only way to show out power is to march. We have to be like Che

      • hibernian56

        Rte would report 500,000 on the streets as “a large crowd” or “over 10,000″.

        I’m no fan of strikes, but I think we need a “citizen’s strike”, with no connection to the unions.

        No doubt those cretins would try to take over any initiative to protect their salaries, which as we all know are obnoxious.

        • Hibernian. Are you a Hibee?

          They always play down the numbers and always have done. If they represented the people they would have no need to lie. They are liars and I will stand up and tell them so. You can’t mess with someone who can’t be sued and sticks to their guns

          We are talking about a very small number of people with disproportionate power here. Please never forget that. They are sitting ducks and there for the taking

          Instead the people ask Pat if it is alright if they may humbly ask a question

          My attitude would be ‘Pat sit down and shut up’. Tell me why you are so special before I ship you off somewhere out of my sight

          Maybe the reason you are no fan of strikes is because they have made you too afraid to know and use the power you have. They would love to think we are drugged and docile but we are wide awake and want change

          A Citizen’s Strike is what it is going to take.

          A mass movement from the townlands to Dublin one day in early summer. 500,000 on the streets in peaceful silent protest could be done and it would give the whole world hope. Ireland could be a beacon for people everywhere who are struggling against the bully boys

          A day out for families. No drink and rioting like every 17th March

          If is was achieved the Labour Party and the Unions would capitulate on the day. They would never recover from the shame.

          For the first time in a long time they would realise the precariousness of their glass towers and let hell hell slap it into them. It would ‘see them right as rain and thinking straight’

          We gave them the fine wines and steak lunches and we can just as easily take it from them. Tossers

          • hibernian56

            Let me clarify..

            I’m no fan of strikes as in I’m no fan of the way they are recently used by Unions that have been quietly taken over by Trough Feeders, they are now a major part of our problem.

            I am not in favour of strikes when they are usurped by the established SENIOR civil service trough feeders to protect pay, pensions and perks that are at their core ridiculous. You never see the senior guys holding pickets do you? But any civil service strikes inevitably have protecting the SENIOR perks at their heart, they control the unions. The term “frontline civil service” merely deflects attention from the top.

            I am in favour of strikes when they have a just cause, such as the recent sit in’s in Cork recently.

            I admire the tactics of Jim Larkin’s lock outs, I like the tactics of the earlier Boycott’s. Both were founded on just principles. They had genuine reasons.

            The Union hierarchy today would not be tolerated by Jim Larkin. David Beg et al are only interested in preserving the status quo from which they feed.

      • Grey Fox

        “Supporters will point to the fact that the creditor in this case accepts that he will not be paid back when he thought he would and the debtor is given a bit more time”.
        Pauldiv,
        The power you talk about is being shown everyday down in the the Four Courts, the number of Lay Litigants showing up everyday to fight their corners is increasing and the knowledge base with which to fight is increasing, the Irish are not coming with pitchforks this time! We area educated and we are succeeding, albeit small success’s, the big success is imminent through the like’s of the Freeman’s. O’Flaherty’s, Darcy’s and more and with the help of the free assistance from the Coyle’s, Callaghan’s, Gilroy’s and more, I have personally seen the incumbent barrister’s rattled along with the solicitors and the Bank Representatives. Ordinary people are realising the bank’s are nothing but pure crooks, they lie, they cheat, they intimidate but the wall is coming down!

      • Colin

        Pauldiv,

        The time for marching was 13 years ago. When, I hear you ask? Yes, in the year 2000. Why, I hear you ask? Because House Prices were rising by circa 20% a year and rents were going up too. But wasn’t it supply and demand that was forcing prices up, the first law of economics? No, the market was rigged. So what happened? Ordinary people like you and me started entering a bidding war. Why? Because they either wanted their own home at any cost or wanted to make money filling a property with tenants. But could they not see that this was unsustainable? They didn’t want to know, they had made up their minds without that kind of consideration. So, in effect they all participated in a giant ponzi scheme, without any consideration for other people? Yes. But that’s not nice now is it? No it isn’t.

        • You are 100% correct. I came here in late 1999 and could not fathom how a whole country could be seduced en mass by debt and I still can’t

          People I worked with at Motorola were egging me to get on the ladder and I was tempted, I don’t mind admitting, because the pressure to conform was relentless but I’d seen it before and knew that for me personally it a was pointless existence, intellectually, spirituallly and economically

          I didn’t need a house and a flash car. I needed something completely different – peace and time to find my bearings. It worked

          I weighed up the pros and cons and came to the very sane conclusion that I would never take on debt. I don’t have the stomach for it. I am averse to risk and worry and believe that if you cool the risk taking then you worry less and have fewer consequences to face. Watching Billy McNeill every week taught me all I had to know about risk taking

          I am debt free because I never forgot stories and experiences of poverty and men who thought they were big shots who soon to earth

          “The bigger they are the harder they fall” is the I favourite I remember most from my chillun’hood

      • Mary Jenkins

        HERE IS YOUR CHANCE (I have copied this from Twitter)

        Diarmuid O’Flynn?@ballyhea14

        To all the ‘says NO!’ protests, to all who have had enough, let’s make this Sat, March 16th, Dublin 4pm at the Dáil, a meeting-point

        • You copied this from twitland. OMG!
          Imagine. Love and congrats sis. How is life down there in twitterland?

          I could not confine myself to such a mind prison. I refuse to swallow it

          Sorree! Gosh I don’t use use Twitter because of it’s funny name. It implies it’s for Twits (or Twats?) who like to gossip and ‘tweet’ but I jess don’t see myself as a twit or a twit who likes to tweet.

          I am joking Mary doll and wish you a fine and happy day and thanks for your reply. Just separate hype from reality and you will see my point. We are not as free as we think we are so be careful out there

          I am not a bird and I don’t tweet. I refuse point blank (1967). I’d rather listen to a Blackbird singing in the sky (1968) and when my body is waning and the mind not sharp I will wait till mother mary comes to me (1970) and think of men in hooped shirts with rounds collars and the art within their minds and spirit

          Music is the one constant in life. So is our political beliefs.

          Death and obscurity is only a few years away so we might as well get on with this Irish revolution whether the conservatives want it or not

          The conservatives seem to hold the aces at the mo but they are shitting bucket loads because they know we see through their shit and spin. They are worse liars than the British and they realise their conservatism is their worst enemy

          Such a conservative ‘labour’ government is a contradiction in terms and unlikely to make friends in South America where they have real labour politicians

          These people really think we are simpletons and maybe they are right. Their contempt and hatred for the people is so palpable they need to be thrown out on their ear and bloody well sent packing for good and with a powerful message in their ears

          A simple deduction. No?

          Must have been a 20 something that came up with that silly name. ‘Twitter’ bah. A city dude or hip chick wanting to impose their shyte idea on the world.

          Know knows? The Irish like to talk so maybe we could come up with an alternative?

          Twitter is shite and is for people who can’t sit on Stephen’s Green and marvel at the light of day the fact of life. Watching the fast roving Irish clouds, trees in the breeze, swans, birds and lovers holding hands on warm afternoons. THAT is life. Not the web

          Thank god I don’t have a mobile phone because I’d miss all that observation and gathering of memories.

          Go to the march and shout like hell.

          We rebels in the regions are still to be convinced. All roads lead to Dail Eireann and that is where people should converge.

          And quite right too

          • Mary Jenkins

            I wasn’t trying to advertise Twitter just letting you know where the info came from as I couldn’t get a clickable link.

            Since you brought the subject up Twitter is a very efficent way of getting information to the public instead of having to read through acres of waffle such as some of the posts on this site.

            Watch this YouTube video by IrelandReborn2013 http://youtu.be/4o93bheR_Sk
            to promote the march on 16th March Dublin
            we are all Irish we are all one and its time for us to say NO

  6. ThomasFergus

    Hi David, for the first time I can really see the anger in your words. I agreed with most of what you have been saying throughout this crisis, but I could rarely share your positivity, although I wish I could have. I hope you get it back because it’s a hard existence being fatalistic all the time.

    • I welcome the anger in his words.

      I hope he gets angrier and says what he really thinks but in measured tones. It only takes one person to make a difference and with the personal profile he has he could make a difference if he chose to say enough is enough.

      People have asked him to stand for election but I think he would see that as a step down into the gutter. He would not want to lose his independence like Mr Mathews and become a schmuck for one of the mobs in power

      True freedom does not come without a cost and I understand that but this guy is not your usual tv3 panelist who is there to pick up the cheque

      Compare him to someone like the O’Connor dame. Next time you see her on Vincento Broon think of painted clowns faces and you will eventually smile and see the adsurdity of it all. Because the dame is one smug arrogant smiling clown with a cold heart

      Once you start seeing them all as ridiculous caricatures the world makes you smile and when you smile you feel positive. Positivity in internal

      Everything in internal

  7. Clarence Beeks

    Hi David, Like Thomas above I do detect a tone of despair creeping into your articles… I’ve been in that place for a long time as I see this country being torn apart by those who seek to protect themselves at the cost of our sovereignty and future generations!!

    The noses as you say are well and truly in the trough and sooner rather than later, we will see the young and the poor rise up not just here but in Europe and take control. I for one cant wait but I hope we get a rise from the left and not the right but I detect that most right wing groups are capitalising at the minute!

    • Puschkin the Black and White Cat

      I a few years, 2018 , perhaps 2030, imagine a Government loudhailer van roaming the quiet streets of suburban South Dublin an authoritarian voice roars:

      “We have done a deal, the green shoots are growing, pay your home tax, pay your internet tax, pay your water tax, we are free , freedom is tax, tax macht frei. We have cared for you, the deal is done, the green shoots are growing ………”, and onnn forever.

      BUT !!! that’s not some dreaded syfi future, that’s now, that’s RTE and the Irish media.

      A good Polish song to cheer you up !!!!!!.

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O6VeNad5uZ8

      No Pasaran !!!!

    • 5Fingers

      Thoroughly agree. But we need to recognize there is a dynamic at work here which always existed.

      If I am a financial guy so fond of hazard and massive highs and lows (they need to be massive to make money – blowouts are the name of the game), the last thing you want is to kill the goose that lays the golden eggs – i.e. the insiders.

      How do you pull the insider/banker relationship apart? It is not easy.
      1) Elections are easily manipulated. It is a numbers game. Just squeeze enough so as not to create a “Monti” of it.
      2) Regulation will be delayed, redefined and re-morphed to make them as effective as they need to be – not as they MUST be. And the banks can always make a “Monti” of you if needed.
      3) Ban central banks, use precious metals and so on. Needs elections I am afraid and in any event, all can be confiscated for “safe keeping” by the crony elected and civil servants.

      I could go on. But the sad fact is that there is no appetite for change and the idea is to keep it that way. Democracies have that lovely aspect of giving free expression while being a strait jacket for the ordinary joe soap who just wants to pay off their debts and live comfortably.

      You could go it alone and be a Cuba or a Venezuela or whatever and be treated as a global terrorist. Irish have no stomach for this. We are tuned to avoid discomfort even to death.

      The only hope I see will be in the form of a paradigm shift. It will be outside of the power of the bankers or insiders to manipulate. It would be something that creates 100% mass interdependency or 100% independence at an individual level. Until then, nothing will change.

    • Everyone is in despair of sorts. It’s a case of perspective and life’s priorities. You have to fight just to stay sane and you have to fight even harder if you want to change the world

      Someone the same age as David living alone on a ghost estate might be in despair but at the same time it is possible to be an international jet setter and best selling author and feel equally desperate and miserable. There are things money can’t buy

      I share your vision of a massive rising and will stand with you shoulder to shoulder. The ‘right’ are running riot and the ‘left’ are non existent in Ireland

      We need a united front that is free from familiar and divisive labels like ‘left’ and ‘right’. That is a con in the same smokescreen as orange and green. It’s all nonsense

      We need a massive purge from people from all classes, creeds and backgrounds if we are to fight this fight

      It has to come from the pubs and the townlands. Ballyshannon will have to forget they hate Bundoran and vice versa. Something much larger is at stake

      The problem as I see it is that Ireland is full of smug mammy’s boys who are all facade, pretensions and bullshit

      Better to have grown up in a city where life is real and in stark contrast to this fake genteel country malarky full of simple but kind hearted people

  8. hibernian56

    I hear from the radio that the latest method for filling the trough has already seen some results…

    1200+ Defective light fines X 60 = €72,000 in 10 Days. AND no doubt a defective light was a useful ruse for the private political police force to invade citizens freedom to travel and lead to more fines for the overtime trough. Maybe some of these “offenders” will end up in the civil (commercial) courts where they are guilty until proven otherwise.

    I can just picture the fat pigs sitting around their trough salivating.

    The last time I was in court disputing a ticket I counted fines in excess of €30,000 and some poor souls even got jail terms over non payment of fines. Meanwhile an ex-solicitor / TD’s son gets a 6 month suspended sentence and an €800 fine for wielding a knife in public while coked up to the gills.

    If only they paid more attention to the condition of the roads, THE MAIN cause of accidents.

    • TD’s son gets a 6 month suspended

      And quite bloody right too

      You can’t be messing with such fine people.

      Know your place and there’s the door. Capiche?

  9. Original-Ed

    I agree – all we’re getting is sales talk – there’s no simple way out of this trap. Our big expensive public sector is what will ultimately bring the whole thing crashing down. The markets aren’t going to take on a dead weight with no underlying reality to support it.
    Services will only generate enough to keep us bouncing along the bottom at best – we need an oil well and we need it fast.

    • Clarence Beeks

      We had one and gave it away!!!

      • Patrick

        We have Oil wells and aren’t using them.Wind/wave energy, Grass, youth, etc.
        The problem is that we have too many resources.
        Countries with good resources have bad economies, they get lazy. Compare northern Europe to Southern Europe.

        • 5Fingers

          Well we do use resources to raise PAYE contributors. Actually making a real national investment is always avoided and considered too risky. We need outside capital and once the people are employed, the PAYE transfusion to the coffers recommences. It does not have to be big…merely continuous.

        • DC

          Things are bad – but I have no intention of eating GRASS!

    • Sales talk. The only people who listen to these salesmen were castrated from birth spiritually and intellectually aided and abetted religion and greed.

      Married to the Church at 7 years of age ffs with pockets of lolly. Indebted and brainwashed for life. Er no thanks Irish Bro

      Such people are conditioned from the age of seven to be mentally ill and anyone who is overtly religious ought to be given a fucking wide berth. Such mental illness and ultra conservatism flies in the face of all the talk about how swashbuckling and enterprising were are. Get em when they are young. Personally I’d never send a child to a catholic school

      It is a contradiction in terms

      That is why we need 500,000 on the streets. We have lived our lives influenced by the bs of salesmen, politicians and men in cloaks who peddle intellectual dope to ignorant simple villagers who lap it up. Religion is dope and that explains why you have lost your spunk

      Selling delusions to a village is very simple but some of the peddlers have managed to pull the wool over the eyes of whole continents. The media fever over the new pope is like a visiting circus for fools and the wars are not happening. But the budgets are rising fast and they madmen want more war!

      Do you want to pay for it?

      We know it is sales patter and a sham. When was the last time you ever heard a man really talk from his heart?

      We are all fakes when it comes to the crunch and that is the hardest thing to swallow.

      We can spend the rest of our time on our knees living in fear or we can grow up and take charge and show them who is boss.

      It’s your country. Please don’t let it be raped and pillaged to satisfy some of the psychopaths on this site.

      They have done more damage in five years than the English did in 800

  10. DarraghD

    Well, we’ll be lucky if we get to read David this Sunday, as the Sunday Business Post has had in interim examiner appointed this afternoon and it’s not clear if there will be a publication this Sunday…

    http://businessetc.thejournal.ie/sunday-business-post-interim-examiner-822505-Mar2013/

    I’m sure the irony isn’t lost on us that I’ve posted a link from a free news website.

  11. molly

    Same crap different day.
    If we are so broke how come the golden circle are so well payed,when the government keep saying we are broke ,we have no money they are not talking about themselves ,they are simple talking down to people,
    It’s like a pack of wild wolves,you have to know your place at the feet of your master ,so the people you elected have another 3years left of this picking bones from the masters table.

    • A guy on the dole with a smile on his face. A happy go lucky Celtic smile. A warm smile and genuine

      Free from the prison of money like Jimmy McGrory when he told Maley and Herbert Chapaman to stuff their kings ransom in 1930 at Euston on a trip to Lourdes

      “I was in awe of pulling on the hooped shirt. It was the only shirt that mattered and I loved the Celtic fans”

      Priceless

      How many Irish heroes from the 20s and 30s remain so loved and remembered today?

      Jimmy McGrory came from Donegal and remains the highest goal scorer in British footballing history.

      550 goals in all competitions

      Jimmy McGrory knew that money meant nothing.

      • “And they gave us James McGrory and Paul McStay”

        Check it out on the tube.

        • Another fine example for any young fella to aspire to.

          In the 1980s this guy set the bar in how to be a man. He was local and he graced Europe’s finest footballing arenas. As good as Liam Brady in my opinion

          Did charity work all week and never expected gold in return. Went for a pint in the same pubs as the fans in the east end and would chant Mac The Knife after a few scoops

          We never lost our roots. We have 140 years of illustrious shared history. We are proud of that history and not ashamed. Even after a 5 – 0 drubbing.

          Where is your illustrious moments?
          Where is your pride and passion?
          Does being Irish mean anything to you?

          http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7MX7so7Ir74

  12. CorkPlasticPaddy

    @ fivefingers,

    Couldn’t agree more with what you had to say!! The ordinary Jane and Joe soaps are the people who are really suffering at this time, but the trouble is that the majority of the Jane and Joe soaps won’t go out and do anything positive about trying to change their situations. If want to know the wholly all of it they don’t seem to realise that they are the ones who keep on contributing to their and everyone elses misfortunes. They’re are the ones who keep moaning about this and that without doing anything of a positive nature to change their and everyone elses situation. The easiest way to start making those changes is to stop voting for the mainstream political parties of FF, FG and Labour and start voting for the likes of Sinn Fein or the ULA or Independant candidates at local and national elections. When they start doing that then maybe and I stress maybe things will start to change for the better for the ordinary Joe and Jane soaps of this country. Remember the old saying ” Out of little acorns mighty oaks grow!”

  13. Good article Davido and a very fine day to you Sir

    First paragraph echoes the title of your new book – I’ve not read it but it’s title makes me curious. It reminds me of my Sligo Granny who sometimes rambled about how important it was to appreciate fine things and fine people and how to behave with a bit of decorum

    Only trouble was decorum did not get you far in the streets. You had to be hard like Sean Fallon, stand up for yourself and follow their example of how to be a gentleman

    The stories were rare. So much so that she almost had me convinced we came from the Irish Royal Family ot it’s erstwhile equivalent. From fine stock back on the old sod. If it was a summer afternoon I’d drift into a dream and could not tell if it was the heat waves through the window glass or granny’s voice that was the catalyst for my hypnotism

    Those long summers now seem like daydreams and today I make it my business to hang on to every memory good and bad and recall the senses and emotions of times long ago

    Fact is she didn’t have a pot to piss in and lived in a tenement single end but used to make up rose tinted stories of the old days. Protestants were very fine people except on a Monday when she took a drink and another side of her appeared with rants and yarns about the Tans and the wealth of Sligo prods. You get the picture. Most Irish people empathise will for sure

    Don’t listen too much to your granny faither used to say. She is as daft as a bag of monkeys. Daft maybe but what a story teller

    Thank you granny for turning me into a dreamer and fucking my life up. Only joking. Every man has to bear responsibility for his choices

    The Ireland of Today reminds me of my granny. She would have been first in line to be seen in The Good Room and I know for sure she would have turned a blind eye to the activities of gargoyles who frequent gatherings of ill repute in big houses

    The fur coat and no knickers brigade. Poor clueless people.

    And so it was and so it came to pass and he signed off. Tis hard for a man to concentrate on words while the thought of beef and stout pies and bottles of chocolate stout are residing in the parlour screaming to be had

    Good luck with the economy thingy.

  14. Bamboo

    Any government needs to inject some “good” news every now and to keep up the spirit. This so called “good news debt deal” about the victorious action by our government is in my opinion concocted and rehearsed some time ago and it only needs good timing to bring it to the people. It only needs dressing up as you said. Everything needs timing and dressing up.
    The “delay and pray” strategy is shaped in such a way that it sounds good. After all that is how banks dressed up and sold all their loans to the people. The longer the term the better it sounds because the monthly repayments are less and doable.

    Every announcement about job losses must be followed up by new jobs being created. The fact is that any announcement about new jobs being created doesn’t mean that it is created instantly. Most likely it will take a couple of years before they are created and filled, while job losses are almost instant.
    Redundancies are staggered – every month a group of people are let go. Usually the excuse/reason is “restructuring”. Till this become unsustainable and then they let all the workers go in one swoop.

  15. Heaven is closer now today
    The sound is in my ears
    I can’t believe the things you say
    They echo what I fear

    Twisting the bones until they snap
    I scream but no one knows
    You say I’m familiar, cold to touch
    And then you turn and go

    Feels like heaven

    See how we planned for saddened eyes
    [ From: http://www.elyrics.net ]
    And tears to pave the way
    I fought the fever as I knew
    My hair returned to gray

    Study your face and fade the frame
    Too close for comfort now
    We can recall the harmony
    That lingered but turned sour

    Feels like heaven

    You wanted all I had to give
    See me, I feel, see me, I live
    Lyrics from eLyrics.net

    • molly

      Such passion

      • Yes and I am glad you feel it too Molly Malone. It makes me feel less alone in this hopeless, simple barren place. I thank you for your empathy

        Passion is our very life force. Without passion we are nothing and it’s better to emotionally invest in passions that last for life – rule number one in life. Passions that will get you up in the morning whether you live in Ireland, India or Argentina

        It might be county hurling or European football at the highest level. It doesn’t matter as long as you can see the bigger picture and realise that there is a big world beyond our tribal and parochial musings

        Proper passion. Like having passion for the things we know we should have being doing all along except were too timid to find the courage to accept

        Passion for expressing our political beliefs and showing these fuckers that we are smarter and more resiliant than they even though we didn’t attend ivy league institutions of ill repute

        It’s time to back claim our destiny. That begins inside and only then will we be in any position to get fired up and change the world

        Too many people don’t know what’ inside them. If they really knew the truth it would have them cowering in fear or doing summersaults from the crossbar in front of .

  16. joe hack

    Why not politically procrastinate today when you can politically get someone else to do the real honest in your face procrastination tomorrow.

    • Procrastination is opposite of potential.

      • joe hack

        I have the potential to procrastinate and when I feel the urge to procrastinate I come here.

        At the moment I’m writing the 4000+ word essay so I’ve come here to procrastinate definitely the opposite to fulfilling my potential to complete this tedious essay of tripe that that I have to write.

        • I understand joe. Fulfilling our potential is a yawnfest and procrastinating feels more natural because it’s more fun than being a control freak. It’s better to be chilled and accept our limitations

          I like procrastinating and I use my potential to find spare time for procrastinating. When I procrastinate I sketch out ideas and thoughts on paper or I might just have fun and draw the Mona Lisa enticingly naked and inviting Big Enda into her boudoir of decadence and femme fatalism

          Not that I know whether Enda is big or small because I have never seen him in person. In fact I would not know if the lad was five foot four or six foot two

          My days of writing 4000 word essays are over thank god. I have an intense dislike for tedium and like a real world challenge instead. Or a walk on the beach on a windy afternoon wondering what it is like to be a jet setter

          If I had to write 4000 words it would have to be on my own terms and if so I could rattle up something of quality in about an hour. Another hour spent polishing and it’s good to go. Anyone who is inspired by Mencken and Raymond Chandler is bound to be not wanting in the imaginative department

          Need to find a subject I guess or else I will eternally spend my time procrastinating and procrastinating about procrastinating. Wasting my potential and any latent talents dormant and undiscovered

          Or maybe I will end up bond trading and writing 4000 word essays about completely meaningless shite

  17. joe hack

    The examiner is in the post…
    A post mortem examination…
    A post business examination…

    The recovery has been posted as the debts have been postponed but business is postmortem and the banks are on life support while sucking lifes blood like a parasite.

  18. Julia

    Hi David, excellent article. So sorry to hear about the Business Post. Hope it survives. That is where I started to read you articles 12 or 13 years ago and was inspired by them.

    I’ve just been listening to Noonan talking to Pat Kenny. Talk about propaganda. Lying through his teeth. Here’s what the cso says – Industrial production down 1.9% in Jan since Dec 2012. Industrial turnover decreased by 8.5% between Jan 2012 and Jan 2013.

    But don’t worry. Noonan is says we’ve turned the corner. By taking yet another billion out of the local economy in the next three years we’ll be creating jobs? Meanwhile the world has 16 new billionaires in the last year.

    By the way the public service may be big and expensive but most of it is necessary. If James Reilly would tackle the prices of pharmacuticals we could save a billion every year and make all our lives easier. CPI up 1.2% since Jan 2012.

    • Bamboo

      @ Julia,
      Fully agree with you here I must say. I just want to add a bit more to this point.
      The Spanish government concentrated all their efforts on construction and less so on pharmaceuticals. Irish Gov however was spending on construction and also on pharmaceuticals.

      Now that the construction industry has collapsed the Irish government is concentrating even more on the pharmaceutical industry. Just count up the number of pharmacists in your own area. I bet you there are more pharmacists then pubs at this stage.

      The pharmaceutical industry will collapse as well and we have to think of something new to concentrate on other than chemicals.
      So not in a billion years will the government give up this industry as it creates employment. These jobs are not only for the pharmaceutical industry but think also of the enormous marketing and design, and not to forget the placibo industry.
      Don’t think James Reilly has anything to do with it.

  19. joe hack

    Turning corners brings you back to where you started from but less shoe leather and worn hip joints.

    If you have ever been here before you would probably know just what to do wouldn’t you. Spinning in circles makes you dizzy and you forget where you came from so socialism for capitalists thrives.

    Piss poor is an expression which came from those who did not have a pot to piss in the piss was used to tan leather.

    • I’ll say one thing. We always had good shoes and often went to the cobbler for soles, heels and plates. People used to get judged on the quality of their shoes hence the expression ‘well heeled’.

  20. molly

    Things might be hard now for people,but if you add up all the things being piled on top of people ,over the next few years and add in no pay rises and the cost of living going up .
    At what point will people snap.
    At what point will enough people do something about it,because at the moment people seam to be sitting back and taking it.
    Why should people have to eat porridge for dinner.
    Why should people go cold.
    Why should people go starve.
    This is a bitter pill to swallow,when what’s running things.
    I was listened to DAVID HALL on the radio this morning and I have to say he made a lot if sence,
    It’s people like that that we need and he won’t be talked down to.

    • Dorothy Jones

      David Hall is excellent, carrying out untiring work. Excellent to follow on Twitter, New Beginnings is great for tips in dealing with Banks re mortgage arrears and can help.

    • paddythepig

      I eat a bowl of porridge every day, and count myself lucky to be able to do so. We are lucky to have porridge to eat, we should not turn our noses up at porridge.

      • molly

        I have nothing against porridge ,you are missing the point,a lot of people are being punished for something that’s not there fault.
        I am not Spartacus .

  21. 5Fingers

    Latest Headlines off the Beeb today….
    US labour market shows strong rise
    China export growth beats forecasts
    Japan growth figures revised upwards

    Meanwhile, back home…
    Private sector job growth continues to be strong.
    FDI in Ireland still very healthy
    Public spend and costs continue to drop

    If there was a vote tomorrow, Journal.ie reports on satisfaction with govenrment. 46% No…50% Do not know and majority would vote for Fianna anything.

    Not exactly gloom and doom – is it? Next question is how to interpret meaningfully. Personally none of it makes sense. But reality may be beckoning otherwise.

  22. molly

    FG and there lap dogs are these the party of the rich for the rich.
    After there two years in government I think it’s fair to say they have pissed a lot of the public off.
    Please remember one think FG and there lap dogs represent the rich ,who are in the minority.
    It reminds me of the Deep South ,we are being told what to do and they are controlling our lives.
    It’s time the so many told the so few where to go and slig there hook else where .
    The government said they can’t touch retired ministers / TDs pensions do they think we are stupid.we are stupid for voting these parasites in .

  23. Well said about the porridge Paddy.
    Spoon of sugar and a few raisins is the ticket.
    My old man used to take it with salt.
    Thought sugar was for wimps.

    • hibernian56

      A bowl every morning keeps me going ’til evening meal. Lunch is for wimps.

      Off topic, but important to remember…
      Potatoes are an english import carefully thought out because of their low calorie / protein content. There was no famine it was a carefully orchestrated genocide by Whitehall. Whitehall had the full co-operation of the local establishment. Similar to our “elected” yes men and their relationship with the EU, IMF, or anyone who can stuff a brown envelope.

      Good synopsis here.. http://www.irishholocaust.org/officialbritishintent

      Earlier they tried the same stunt in India, but luckily the Indian’s didn’t rely solely on the potato. They did however manage to starve over 30 million to death. Much easier to control is they don’t have a large population, what, tally ho chaps. Whitehall did its best to kill off all “non essentials”mainly through famine or :land tax”.

      Land tax meant exporting the food supply for profit. So once again, plenty of food but a famine non the less. Sound familiar?

      The number of people who died in India due to deliberate actions of Whitehall and the East India Company and its derivatives is mind boggling. Start reading about Warren Hasting the first governor and you will see the trend.

      Profits before people. Nothing has changed.

      • Political skullduggery begins at home

        I recently read a report from a Scottish acedemic who collected enough evidence to prove that there was a concerted effort by the Edinburgh establishent and their political reps to undermine Glasgow, the second city of the empire

        Since the 1950s they knew if they could weaken Glasgow industrially then the city would become weaker politically

        Workers city v City of Conservative power brokers and bottom feeders

        Huey and Cry – Mother Glasgow

        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BBrvVdr6PsU

  24. 67 comments haha. Must be a prophesy.

    David a bit of football for you. Best enjoyed from 4.20

    Regards

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cEM-uU58DBQ

  25. paddythepig

    The people instinctively know they, on aggregate, binged like fools. Everyone knows deep down you should only spend what you earn in life, but they don’t want to accept that as they have been rared on profligacy, waste greed, sloth, vanity all without consequence. Until now.

    The game is up.

    Italians can vote for ex comedians and randy old lechers all they like, but it doesn’t change the fact that they have been living beyond their means for years. In my eyes they are a shower of spoilt brats.

    The western world is full of entitlement, but is short of ideas.

    Ideas will come over time, but the most acute problem is to curb the sense of entitlement. All that other bollox about elites, insiders and outsiders, and we’d be grand if we printed our our own money, and we all need to go shopping more, and all that muck, is just wilful denial and distraction.

    • goldbug

      SPEND WHAT YOU EARN?

      ALL EURO MONEY IS DEBT.

      TRANSLATION -> YOU SHOULD ONLY SPEND WHAT SOMEONE ELSE BORROWED?

      THAT IS THE GAME.

      SOME ARE VERY SUCCESSFUL AT IT

      -> THE REST ARE VICTIMS OF THE GAME.

      THE REST IS WILFUL DENIAL AND DISTRACTION.

      • bonbon

        You can only earn if you have a job (or sugar daddy). It is willful denial to avoid the physical collapse of the economy.

        Anyone with even the slightest business experience, from agro to industry knows credit is the key to progress. Productive credit. We have learned I hope that that cannot be left to banksters, but is a national imperative.

        Lincoln and FDR knew this. So dump the “euro” and activate national credit to regain sovereignty and productive economies.

        We are entitled to progress, and youth are entitled to the future. Private gangsters are not entitledf to steal either.

        • paddythepig

          Credit is most definitely not the key to progress.

          • bonbon

            Any researcher will tell you a good startup with a new technology needs low-interest credit. Large firms now implement the “spin-out” – “spin-in” model but have catastrophically misjudged the banks credit squeeze – hence no progress. To deal with this dark-age monetarism, Hamilton’s Credit System is key. Then the progress we are entitled to can carry on.

        • Credit is the debt march to the financial death camp.
          Capital is what is required to formulate the basis for a sound buniness.

  26. bonbon

    Confidential document lifts lid on AIB veil of secrecy on mortgage deals

    9 Mar (Sinn Féin News Report) Sinn Féin Finance Spokesperson Pearse Doherty TD has today released a confidential non-disclosure document used by AIB to gag borrowers in the buy-to-let market on mortgage deals with the bank.

    • bonbon

      There you will find a link to the AIB PRE-NEGOTIATION NON-DISCLOSURE UNDERTAKING, to be signed.

      • molly

        If there is deals being done on the buy to let ,it’s at the expense of somebody else.
        The behind closed doors system stinks to high heaven.

        • bonbon

          They use threatening legal language to intimidate signers into silence.

          There is an awful lot of silence wandering the streets!

  27. bonbon

    How’s that for joukery-pawkery? AIB is doing deals behind closed doors, gagging the lucky, and FG/LP matches it with jiggery-pokery.

  28. gizzy

    Usual mix of good comments and some judgemental preaching. Some but few people binged in the bubble. Facts are most people do not understand market dynamics and depend on the experts, the media and their advisors for the information to buy property. The Government and their agencies taking close about 35% of the price of the house said buy, the media said buy in fact said you would be mad not to , the Banks not only said buy but said here is the money to buy it is a good risk. The government got an EU bailout, the Banks got an EU State bailout but there is horror and moral indignation at any thought of a buyer bailout.

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