April 22, 2016

Strikes, strife and endless stop-start government - it's the '70s all over again

Posted in Irish Independent · 92 comments ·

Enda Kenny would cut a dash in a pair of bottle-green, high-waist parallels and a snugly fitted Bay City Rollers bomber jacket. Or maybe a Robin Gibb, Bee Gees one-piece with the bell-bottom flares, up which you could hide a six-pack?

 He should turn up to the Dáil next week in full 1970s regalia to a backing track of Slade or, for the funkier among you, why not a camp, be-feathered entrance to a blaring disco, 12-inch version of Sister Sledge’s ‘He’s the Greatest Dancer’?

Make no mistake about it: we are back in the 1970s. Whether your weakness is glam rock, outré disco, prog rock or Leo Sayer, the soundtrack matches side-burns, microphone Afros, catsuits and Babycham.

Close your eyes, forget the Toyota Prius, the iPhone, Facebook and Twitter. Sit back and listen to the news this week – the soundtrack of the seventies.

Let’s start with the breaking down of national pay bargaining negotiations, then move on to the threat of all-out nationwide transport strikes delivered by leftist men with beards, and then consider a shaky unstable minority government which is charged to deal with all the industrial unrest.

Once you have digested that, think further about still nationalised banks not extending credit and our biggest neighbour possibly going its own pre-EEC way? Back to 1973 anyone?

In many ways, the Luas dispute is simply venting in public what has been happening privately and under the radar for the past year.

CSO statistics reveal that in 2011, in the depths of recession, there were just 3,695 days lost to strike action. By last year, that figure had risen to more than 32,000 days. This is likely to continue.

It’s likely that wages are going to rise in the years ahead and this will prompt a titanic struggle between workers and employers, which could easily spill over into wildcat strikes and significant industrial dispute, starting in the public sector and extending out to the private sector.

Does this mean that Ireland is about to experience a significant rise in wages over the course of the next few years?

Yes, I believe that will happen, not because I have any insider knowledge, but because this is how economies behave and this is how humans behave. Expect the trade unions and workers very soon to demand their share of the pie.

And, naturally, if a government doesn’t get to grips with expenses like housing costs, workers will clearly demand more wages.

Or if a government increases taxes on workers, it means their take-home pay is smaller and, at the first chance, they will try to get some of their share back.

Obviously, the more a government or political party continues to talk about a recovery, the more it is encouraging this process.

All this talk of the recovery gives workers the permission to push for more wages because they can say, “If the economy is so strong, why don’t I get a few extra quid?”

As unemployment falls, wage demands rise. It’s called the Phillips Curve in economics and the relationship is as old as the hills.

In a recession, we are too scared to look for higher wages because we know there is always someone on the dole queue to take our job. Over time, as the dole queues fall, this threat diminishes and workers move to get higher pay. This is the cycle.

The implication of this is that the country is facing a summer of discontent as workers agitate, peacefully at first, for higher wages.

The next Taoiseach will have to be able to deal with this new cycle. The economic cycle is turning and industrial relations could be very messy, particularly if workers try to claw back wage increases that they believe were postponed in the recession.

Now consider the next government and how you think it will deal with an outbreak of industrial unrest. Remember, this is a government that is implicitly, if not explicitly, based on delivering favours. Fine Gael knows that it will be hammered in the next election, so it will give anything to every vested interest rather than go to the people again.

Think now about the Independents. They are in the extractive business. They are not thinking about the national interest at all, that is why they are Independent. They are there to extract “rent” for their followers.

Although some may be good people, they are there to deliver more for their own narrow electorate. This means, given a fixed budget, that they have to be successful in extorting cash from other people for the benefit of their own, no matter how “nationally incoherent” any giveaways are.

This expression “nationally incoherent” is one we should dwell on, because it’s not just the Independents: Fianna Fáil is at the same “nationally incoherent” game.

This government will not look and smell like a real government, but will be more like a position paper for the next election – a launch pad, if you will.

Fianna Fáil and the Independents will pull the plug when it suits them and, given the primacy of party politics over national interest on display the past few weeks, the political strategy of the opposition has to be to make things as unpleasant as possible for the new government for as long as they can bear it.

Once we reach the point where things are unbearable, the tactic will be to pull the plug, go to the polls and blame Fine Gael for everything.

After all, the thinking is that if Enda Kenny’s Fine Gael couldn’t win with the economy growing at 6pc, what hope do they have when we are in the middle of mass industrial unrest?

Are we in for a summer of discontent? I fear so.

Do we have a political structure that can deal with and manage the industrial fallout? I fear not.

Welcome to the 1970s, 21st century-style.

Irish Independent

  1. Pat Flannery

    There is indeed a close relationship between inflation and wages, which is all that the ‘’Phillips Curve’’ claims. But it is not predictive. There are many other real factors affecting wages such as technology changes, union power, demographics, taxation etc. But accepting that wages are doomed to chase inflation factors such as too-high housing prices, is a futile exercise. Housing prices will have to be tackled separately not accommodated as a natural law of economics.

    To counter the growing popularity of the ‘’Phillips Curve’’ among political theorists in America during the inflationary ‘70s and ‘80s Milton Freedman argued that no matter what employers or the Government did the interplay of inflation and wage rates would self-adjust into the inflation-adjusted purchasing power of wages because of an underlying evil-sounding thing he called the “natural rate” of unemployment. He argued that the US Government (under the labour-friendly Jimmie Carter at the time) was merely exchanging inflation for higher wages. The people listened and elected Ronald Reagan (for whom, I am now sorry to admit, I voted).

    But you would have to have been living in America at the time of the air traffic controllers’ strike to appreciate how scary the inflationary spiral seemed at the time. I guess it had its counterpart in the miners’ strike in Britain. Would I have voted for Maggie Thatcher if I was living in Britain at the time? Thank goodness I was not.

    I have since developed a healthy suspicion of economic ‘’curves’, including that of the respected LSE professor from New Zealand, Bill Philllips in the ‘60s. During the Reagan years the ‘’Laffer Curve’’ was used to justify much of the Reagan-Thatcher economics. And we all know how that turned out.

    The name ‘’natural rate’’ seems to have been replaced with the more politically correct description of ‘’rational-expectations’’. My own personal view is that local wages and prices are not nearly as ‘’sticky’’ as economists would have us believe. We have to deal with real factors affecting wages individually. In present-day Ireland that undoubtedly is housing prices.

    San Diego for example currently has an unemployment rate of 4.5%. According to economic curve theories that city should be seething with industrial unrest right now. In fact strikes are virtually unknown. I attribute that good fortune to the fact that its biggest employers (such as the giant Qualcomm that makes the Snapdragon chip for most Android mobile phones) supply a world-wide rather than a local market.

    I agree with David that the next Irish Government will indeed face unreasonable demands from public and private service sectors within Ireland e.g. the transport sector. But the job of the Irish Government will be to protect the core economy which in Ireland’s case is the IDA-sponsored export sectors. The best way of preventing the forest fire of domestic service pay claims spreading to this core sector is to NOT accept the inevitability of the Phillips Curve.

  2. Mike Lucey


  3. patricia03

    So what you are saying Pat, is that any theory only explains a particular situation at any given point in time. A theory becomes popular to a particular political group in power but because of the infinitesimal variables at any point in time cannot predict anything?

    • Pat Flannery

      patricia03: I’m not sure I understand your question but I will try to explain what I think of economic theories in general.

      A good theory in economics or elsewhere explains the general principles that AFFECT a particular situation rather than fully explain that particular situation. But that does not mean that a good theory cannot be predictive in a general way. All good theories must be found predictive by empirical evidence.

      I would relegate the so-called Phillips Curve and the Laffer Curve to hypotheses rather than theories as they have not been proven by empirical evidence or by common experience. In fact quite the opposite. That is why I said that the Phillips Curve is NOT predictive as David suggests. I’m afraid this elevation of unproven hypotheses happens a lot in politics and by economists. Our job is to call them to account.

      I believe that we must not accept industrial unrest as a necessary consequence of a reviving economy. There are very specific fixable causes at work e.g. housing costs.

      • patricia03

        Thank you Pat. That is a very clear explanation.

      • ” Our job is to call them to account.”

        Economics is a philosophy designed to make the simple complicated! :)

        • patricia03

          I agree Tony. I seem to spend my time trying to make out what is meant and then thinking it must be me or there is more to this than meets the eye.

          • Yes Patricia

            I met a friend/Acquaintance yesterday and for some reason we past a few words which lead me to say that people are so in debt because the money system is debt based.

            He interjected with a sneering laugh to tell me I did not know what I was talking about. When I assured him I did he told me ” I studied economics and it is a very complicated subject , and I have not the time to talk about it now.

            While talking and saying he was an economist he pushed his face to mine to attempt intimidation.

            I spent 40-50 years reading financial pages and listening to financial commentators without understanding what they were talking about. I blamed myself for being stupid about this.

            Now I am informed and not intimidated. The truth is that the majority of commentators and economists have not a clue what they are talking about. That is why they appear to or do speak gobblelygoo.

            Dickens had it correct in Pickwick Papers when declaimed Mr. Macawber ” Income 20 shillings, expenses 19 shillings 6d, happiness. Income 20 shillings , expenses 20shillings and 6d , misery.”

            Have faith in your common sense. :)

    • McCawber

      Quantum Theory is also referred to as Heisenberg’s Uncertainty principle.
      That’s the Universe we live in.

  4. Mike Lucey

    So the key to peace is the availability of reasonably priced housing particularly in the Dublin area. The chances of that are zero when the workforce to achieve this aim have been forced to go the UK, USA, CAN, AUS etc and I doubt they are interested in coming back to ‘fill the gap’ for the same thing to happen again in 6-7 years time.

    The speculation mindset / elements has to removed by whatever means from the Irish economy before a sustainable house building industry can be achieved.

    • Sideshow Bob

      + 1

      That is a significant point (no appetite for risk taking) with a large relevance to a key underlying factor (housing provision and cost) there, Mike.

      I will come back to this later, if I get a chance.

  5. Deco

    I actually do not think that Independent TDs are any worse than party political machines when it comes to being extractive.

    Everytime that the FG political machine and it’s ILP bolt-on are in power, a certain media oligarch seems to “extract” very lucrative deals.

    Pothole fixing in Kerry is cheap compared to the SiteServ write down courtesy of Ireland’s most scandal prone bank.

    In fact one could claim that there is societal benefit from better infrastructure in the Atlantic counties.

    Cheap loans to billionaires who avoid taxes, and then subsidize “bread&circuses” machines like the FAI, is the essence of what is wrong with this country.

    Party machines that make decisions that go his way, are what is wrong with Irish politics.

    • cooldude

      I agree the independents in general have done a fairly good job at keeping FG in check. Mick Wallace exposed the scams that are going on at NAMA and Shane Ross is a constant thorn in their side with his questions on semi state waste. All TDs look after their own backyard first including Enda.

      A bigger problem coming down the tracks is the state of the European banking system and the inevitable introduction of the now legal “bail in ” procedure for banks that get in trouble. This is happening right now in Italy, Austria and Greece. How long before it spreads. Here is Egon Von Greyerz throwing his expert eye on the state of the European banking system. Fasten your seat belts for this one


      • Manipulation and corruption in government is endemic.
        Using central bankers to manipulate currency values, interest rates, bond values, money inflation, etc there is no free market. all decisions made by individuals, corporations and politicians are subject to mismanagement caused by malinvestment caused in turn by incorrect information.

        Here is information that this has been going on for decades.
        Nothing is as it seems. We in the west have a more controlled press than other parts of the world. we are ill informed and so the correct decisions are impossible for the average person.

        Although this article is gold focused, the results of the manipulation reverberate throughout the world economy and politics.


        • PS I tick the box but still get no email commentary except I do get David’s article when published. I have written 4 times to the webmaster and to David himself, to no avail. I begin to think there is a conspiracy of sorts!!!!!!!!!!!!

        • McCawber

          Ta btw for the answer to why Mary Jane was declared an illegal substance.
          It really points up the need to review why we are where we are re drugs.
          Medical research can’t be too far away from a solution to addiction.
          Meanwhile, in Ireland at least, the Methadone clinics are a huge success (pigs are fkying too).
          Politicians trot this out all the time as a the “solution”

        • It would appear that the regulators in the US were unaware of Deutsche Bank’s confession to rigging the markets


      • It may not be long before those who have jobs will be happy to retain them rather than agitating for higher wages. We are in a period of contraction with monetary inflation, the so called stagflation. The current standard of living being 45% of what it was in 1970 will only contract for those ill prepared.

        “So most central banks and sovereign governments are virtually bankrupt but so are commercial banks. Their share prices are definitively telling us that. Most major banks’ shares are down between 75% and 90% since 2007. Deutsche is down 87% and Citi 92% whilst Credit Suisse and Barclays are “only” down 78%! The massive falls in all major banks’ share prices are clearly telling us that these banks are unlikely to survive.” Von Greyerz


        • sravrannies

          Hi Tony – it’s also probable that the gold purchase programmes of China, Russia, India and others is a co-ordinated plan among main players, including US, before backing currencies to a gold standard at an agreed future date. Hence the efforts to keep gold/silver prices low until programmes are complete.



          • All sorts of speculation is touted.

            It seems that there is a likelihood that the US does not have the gold as recorded. There has been no audit allowed by the FED since the 1950′s
            The Fed as custodian of others gold, for instance Germany, may have even leased out, sold or otherwise hypothicated the gold and so it is A. not there and B. at least double or triple accounted.

            Organization like the IMF and BIS say they have gold as an asset. Where did it come from, it it really there. Both are creations and as such had nothing. It is unlikely that gold would be just handed over to them from a particular country. More likely it is an accounting entry recording a commitment by a country to provide the gold if necessary. Therefore on the books of the country as well as the BIS et al.

            As countries compete for trade they are forced to compete with currency wars to get trade advantage. Trade loss or deprivation leads to real shooting wars.

            I do not see the US for example willingly handing over the keys to China or Russia.

            The international banksters are another question. They operate in all spheres to their own advantage. Wars are sponsored and financed as the banksters skim of the profits. So look to see what benefits them the most.

            The US no doubt has manipulated the gold and silver prices downward in order to protect the hegemony of the Petro dollar. This was to the indirect advantage of China as she tries to build real reserves from the excess paper fiat US dollar bonds held in reserve.

            It is likely China joined the game to her own advantage by cooperating in the use of paper derivatives to drive the prices lower. Then China quietly scooped up the underpriced physical bullion.

            Now other countries with these reserves hold the US at ransom. You will allow us to obtain gold this way or we dump our reserves on the world economy and trash the US dollar.

            We are just witness to Saudi Arabia doing this to the US openly in defiance of any enquiry about the perpetrators of the 9/11 crime.

            Some think that China and Russia’s accumulation of gold will continue until there is little left to be had.

            The opening of the Shanghai physical gold exchange on 19th April signals that that day has arrived. The Chinese have declaimed the exchange be cash and carry the gold and no paper promises or fractional reserve practices allowed. If you do not have the bullion you cannot sell. If you do not have the cash denominated in Renmimbi you can not buy. This is a double challenge to the US. as US dollars cannot be used and bullion must be available.

            The world price of gold is going to be set as usual in the London “fix” as well as the COMEx (Crimex) using paper promises and fractional reserve practices. It is calculated that COMEX has less than one ounce of physical gold available for every 300 ounces traded. In other words most of the gold trade in the COMEX is immaginary as is the money used in the trade.

            Compare this with the new Shanghai exchange where it is as described physical gold only.
            If you wanted to take delivery where would you trade?

            The game is on
            Described as Gold Wars by Ferdi Lips
            Trade wars and Currency wars by the MSM

            Leading to actual wars to protect the Petro dollar as we have witnessed in various North African, Arabian, and Middle Eastern countries this last 25 years.

            J.P. Morgan Famously said” Gold is money, all else is credit” And so it is.

            “In the absence of the gold standard, there is no way to protect savings from confiscation through inflation. There is no safe store of value. Alan Greenspan
            Read more at: http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/a/alangreens136390.html

        • sravrannies

          thanks for taking he time to respond Tony. I did take the plunge and invest in gold and silver. I have read there is some benefit in storing in places like Singapore rather than London. Any truth in that?

          keep the faith


          • McCawber

            They say possession is 9 tenths of the law.
            I’d be looking for actual possession of your gold.

      • “So, what we’re learning and re-learning as we approach Britain’s June 23 referendum is that banks are not any safer than they were in 2007.”


      • http://usawatchdog.com/weekly-news-wrap-up-4-22-16-greg-hunter/

        “The global economy continues to implode. That means it is going to be even more impossible to make debt payments. Intel plans to lay off 11% of its workforce (12,000) to save some money. Of course, Intel has been bringing in cheaper foreign workers since 2010. Still, what does that say about Intel’s forward book of business? It must not be looking good for the chip business and all of the businesses Intel supplies. Other metrics, such as the Baltic Dry Index, have fallen and cannot get up.”

  6. Deco

    When it comes to being extractive the Pee Dees win hands down. The reverse Robin Hood party. Good riddance.

    Shane Ross correctly called them the political wing of IBEC.

    • McCawber

      IBEC is the political wing of the civil service.
      It is primarily funded by the semi states as far as I’m aware.

      • Truthist

        IBEC is meant to be the official Representatives of “Corporate” Ireland.

        The various Civil Service Organisations [ bodies, unions etc. ], & the Civil Service Departments themselves*, are meant to be the official Representatives of the Civil Service.
        *The Civil Service Departments defacto represent the Civil Service in addition to the Irish State.

        I can understand that “Corporate” Ireland & Civil Service are both members of the Institutional State of the Irish State [ I.S.I.S. ].
        But, there are other members :
        the Politico class in the main : Most politicians [ Extreme Left to Extreme Right ]
        the Professional class as a class solely
        Elements of the [ pseudo ? ] Intelligentsia
        the Media

        Might it be more accurate to say that :

        IBEC is the political wing of I.S.I.S. ?

        IBEC is just one of more political wings of I.S.I.S. ?

        IBEC is the political Boss of political Bosses of I.S.I.S. ?

        What is the evidence that IBEC is primarily funded by the semi-states ?

  7. McCawber

    Back to the Future 2.
    I’m seeing a theme here.
    The big “potential ” difference now is that the technology exists to automate most things at an affordable cost.
    Driverless trains and trams are no problem.
    Teachers may take a little longer but rest assured it’s a work in progress.
    Maybe “Future World” might be more apt.

  8. McCawber

    The country is plagued by quangos, it’s fair to say. Another legacy from the Bertie era.
    SF, FF and all the Indos are very keen to abolish the Water Board.
    Sooooooooooooooo Lads why nit scrap a few more state “Boards”.
    Let’s see what ye are made of now.
    Ye have a once in a lifetime opportunity to make real changes, to take on the many special interest groups that are screwing us all.
    Here’s one for you to start with.
    How about indicting Bertie and then we’ll know you’re not just a bunch of empty vessels making a lot of noise.

  9. Advice on conducting the affairs of a Republic.

    In his 1796 Farewell address, George Washington, the First President of the United States, said: “Observe good faith and justice toward all nations. Cultivate peace and harmony with all. … Against the insidious wiles of foreign influence the jealousy of a free people ought to be constantly awake, since history and experience prove that foreign influence is one of the most baneful foes of republican government. The great rule of conduct for us in regard to foreign nations is, in extending our commercial relations, to have with them as little political connection as possible.”

    Sounds like he would have approved of Brexit and Eirexit too.

  10. Being within the EURO leads to financial strife and loss of financial sovereignty.
    Being within the EU leads to loss of political sovereignty.
    Having a proportional representation vote leads to a hung parliament. Better a first past the post preferential ballot system.

    USA want the status quo as a single European government is easier to control than several sovereign states acting in their own self interest.


  11. Strife is occurring around the world as the Western Industrial Democracies are under attack in many ways. The importation of sharia law to be impose in neighbourhood after neighbourhood that advocate social policies that are many times against the laws of the country. The problem stems from radicals being allowed to operate with impunity. The schengen treaty Has already been put aside in Europe.



    City of London elections


  12. “Feast your eyes on the carnage that is to come…and take special notice of the top 3 banks who are about to be clotheslined!”

    “Don’t take my word for it! Just check this chart from the Atlanta Fed giving their US GDP forecast(HT Mike Maloney):”

    “I believe, that the globalists have wanted this to be the “final collapse” to end all collapses. They want it to be so bad, that the world literally comes crawling to them to “fix it”, no matter how draconian and orwellian that “fix” may be.”


    • sravrannies

      It seems the European taxpayer is going to be on the hook for some of those bad loans US Banks made to US Shale oil companies. We really are being well and truly shafted;



      • Well actually not the European tax payer on the hook as nothing has been loaned to the European taxpayer. The loans are to whoever issues the bonds. Of course they will still demand payment and the corporation is further in debt. As most are already insolvent companies who would otherwise have difficulty raising funds without paying much higher interest rates, it is a rescue of the companies bailed out with imaginary money that cost the central bank absolutely nothing.

        Not without effect though. Here is the synopsis, final two paragraphs of the above link.

        “Our question: how long until we see a surge of US-based near insolvent shale companies rushing to incorporate SPVs in the Netherlands or Ireland, just to get the green light to be included in the ECB’s asset purchases. We are confident that within 2-3 months of this post, we will see at least one deeply distressed US oil and gas producer suddenly announcing that henceforth its ultimate parent is a post box located somewhere in Dublin…

        As for the biggest implications, they are truly troubling: the disconnect between fundamentals and prices will hit never before seen levels, pushing not only equity but corporate bond prices dramatically higher, and as in the case of European sovereign bonds, prevent any true price discovery no matter how deplorable the underlying economic situation is. It also will confirm what most know: that price discovery no longer exists, that markets are merely policy vehicles, and that central banks will be more intertwined in capital markets than ever before, meaning that any attempt at renormalization will be doomed to fail as pricing in the elimination of the expanded global “Draghi put” will lead to a collapse of all asset prices, not just equities but also corporate bonds.

  13. Truthist

    Wake up ! Wake up ! Wake up !

    Wake up all yee’s Junkies of Chomsky, Stiglitz, Larry Sanders, Donald Trump, & all other decoys from what the real truth ;

    Cold Turkey in the form of “Bail-ins” coming ur way soon ;


    Excerpt ;
    Entering into 2016, all members of the European Union (EU) were required by law to have bail-in legislation on their books in preparation for the next potential crisis that in previous times would have resulted in a taxpayer funded bailout…
    And on April 10 2016, it appears that these new rules have come not a moment too soon as Austria is to become the 1st European state to implement a bail-in as it induces the new policy on the failed Hypo Alpe Adria (bank), which is known today as the Heta Asset Resolution AG when it was nationalized by the Austrian government 6 years ago.
    Initially, a haircut of 54% will be implemented against senior creditors that could take upwards of 6 years to finalize the process and payouts to the debt holders.
    The significance of today’s bail-in act out of Austria is that it is the 1st of its kind in the Eurozone, and opens the door for future bailouts in a banking system that is extremely underfunded due to derivative and liquidity issues… Because now more than ever, it appears now that these new rules will be needed quickly for a financial crisis that could be just around the corner.

    And, here ;


    And, of course, more here ;


  14. Truthist

    Better to have many small unions in private sector ;
    More chances then that union is truly representative of the wages & conditions of lowly paid employees.
    Presently, the unions do not care about the lowly paid employees.

    Important that unions are not manipulated from within by pernicious interests :

    selfish Biz interests ; Local & Foreign

    Socialist-Communist-Facist agenda interests ; Local & Foreign
    Government interference — in particular situations — is the exercise of unfair activity by the State, & thus the State is already interfering as a Socialist-Communist-Facist interest.

    selfish Libertarian interests ; Local & Foreign
    Note ;
    There are already many types of Libertarianism.
    And, all are not selfish.
    Indeed, some have many benign policies ; And, these uniquely held also.

    Selfish Personal interests ; Local & Foreign

    Foreign can refer even to just a “School of Thought” not local to Ireland AND serving an interest in advarience to Ireland.

    For quite a while the unions in Irish State have been taken over by a cozy shop of all of the above.

    Presently, it is seemingly acceptable for the public sector unions to flex their muscles for its members to feed at the trough.

    Presently, it is seemingly NOT acceptable for the private sector unions to flex their muscles for to gain improvement in wages, & conditions, for the many lowly paid of its members, nor for those employees who are not members of any union, nor for the jobless.

    Furthermore, one, or some, or all, of 1.-4. [ above ] have also clandestinely been involved in organising strikes even when the employees did not feel aggrieved about the attributed reason[s].

    Ultimately, for these manipulators it is all about control.
    Control of society.

    However, 4. [ above ] may not necessarily involve the motivation of control or society, or even the control of another target.
    It could just be for to gain some purely personal prize[s].

    • McCawber

      Union officials therefore should not be allowed, by their membership, to accept the bribe of directorships on state boards or anything of a similar nature.
      Small unions v large unions is a dichotomy.
      United we stand makes sense but labour legislation eg secondary picket banned has reduced the effectiveness of large unions.

      • Truthist

        I confess McCawber to not having varied experience in union matters.
        But, my personal experience gave me some deep & hidden knowledge.
        Also, observation & reflection can give meaningful insight.
        As also can questioning & listening & discussion & research.

        Ref. Ur Points

        1 of 3 ;
        In theory, a union official being a director or similar :
        should be a plus for the union official’s members.
        can be a negative for the union official’s members
        Sadly, in practise it has in the main been b].

        2 of 3 ;
        As much as I try to cater for the most important & relevant qualifications to any statement, I now think that I was amiss to omit elaborating on what I meant by the term “Small” Union.
        “Small” Union here was the most convenient term I could think of on the fly for :

        union particular to a particular factory / office / shop.
        And, it the only, or vastly supported in membership, union at this particular factory / office / shop.

        ditto 2.a] ;
        But, per more than 1 factory / office / shop of :
        Category of Industry & / or Service

        Union particular to a particular speciality of work skill at:
        1 particular factory / office / shop
        more than 1 factory / office / shop of :
        Category of Industry & / or Service

        McCawber, I am interested in ur own views as to why they are dichotomous ; Aside from the difference in size.

        3 of 3 ;
        Yes, I had thought about including mention of legislation that has been enacted to reduce the effectiveness of unions.
        Is it the case that large unions are less effective than small unions [ small in size if u prefer that specification ] vis-a-vis this legislation ?

        • McCawber

          That last bit is part of the dichotomy.
          Bigger union more money to back a strike plus bosses get to know the negotiators tells.
          Smaller union and it’s more like guerilla warfare.
          In theory United we stand is better but this doesn’t seem to sit too well with the Irish psyche.
          On balance business prefers bigger unions so the unions should prefer the opposite.
          The days of unions are numbered however.
          The state and semi state apparatus will be last union strongholds

          • Truthist

            Again, McCawber, what u say makes a lot of sense.

            The days of unions are numbered because of what reason[s] ?

          • Truthist

            Some mind-blocks ;

            “… bosses get to know the negotiators TELLS” ?

            “In theory, ‘United we stand’ is better” ;

            Ref. Ireland

            This theory is more vindicated by “Small” Union ?

            This theory is more vindicated by “Large” Union ?

            And why are “the days of unions numbered” ?

    • Truthist

      Typo ;

      Omission ;

      selfish Libertarian interests ; Local & Foreign
      Note ;
      There are already many types of Libertarianism.
      And, NOT all are selfish.
      Some Schools of Libertarianism are selfish.
      Some Schools of Libertarianism are not selfish.

  15. survivalist

    Not surprisingly it looks as though the war on workers is being ramped up in the national media ahead of industrial action – now that is as old as the hills.

    It is essential that people do their own research especially when the business union propaganda wagon gets up and running, churning out ‘economic-speak’ to control the masses.

    The ‘Phillips curve’ actually shows the relationship between unemployment and inflation. Wage increases are the assumed cause of inflation in that model.

    And if you believe that wage increases lead to inflation then the business lobby propaganda has been tremendously successful; and you are badly misinformed.

    Two important points are presented from ‘economic literature’. The consensus in the empirical literature is that higher wage growth does not cause higher inflation. This evidence is summarized by Hess and Schweitzer (2000):

    ”There is little systematic evidence that wages are helpful for predicting inflation…the policy conclusion to be drawn is that inflation can appear regardless of wage trends.”

    Secondly the assumption that an increase in wages automatically triggers an increase in inflation is based on the idea that companies pay their workers the maximum amount they can possibly pay while staying in business, and therefore any increase in wages necessitates raising prices.

    How likely does that seem? Don’t forget, companies exist to make profit not to provide jobs.

    The economic mumbo-jumbo could go on ad infinitum, suffice to say; “ The ultimate source of inflation is persistent excessive growth in aggregate demand resulting from persistent excessive growth in the supply of money.” – So said the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis circa 1981.

    Some facts are relevant to consider with respect to the position of unions in the upcoming industrial actions. There are important questions to be answered; Do unions have some monopoly’ power in labour markets? How strong is labour and how similar are we to the 1970 in terms of union power?

    In 1970 union density was 53% and by 1979 it was at it’s highest ever at 57.5%. Then came the war on unions and now union density in Ireland is at a worrying 27%.

    It seems the people are in a much more weakened position to agitate for wage increases than ever before. This is a trend seen generally across the industrialized world. But that won’t stop business from screaming that any worker benefits will be the end of civilization.

    But inflation is coming.

    We have witnessed years of dumping hundreds if not thousands of dollars and euros into the money supply.

    One more thing; I hope people will stop believing the BS the media are delivering as regards the role of Independent TDs.

    The best hope for this country is the continuing growth of independents returned to the Dail.

    The idea that a country can be made strong with trickle down benefits to the regions issued by directive from a central source only applies if you are in Dublin. It is nonsense.

    What really happens to grow and strengthen a nation is that men and women unite to form families, families unite to form communities and from the union of these communities the country becomes strong not to mention acquires its identity.

    A Government bent on aggregating power to itself and centralized in Dublin hates strong communities and by necessity hates the foundation of the community, the family. But that is another matter.



  16. McCawber

    The real problem with “bail in” legislation is that it’s like removing the safeties.
    It means bank and politicians can behave even more irresponsibly without sanction.
    BECAUSE handing Joe Citizen the bill is nowa lot eeasier.
    We do indeed live in interesting times.
    Accursed are we!

    • Truthist

      Some questions naturally arise Re ; our “interesting times” :

      Essentially, what is / are being fought for by each protagonist ?

      Essentially, who are the “surface” protagonists of Joe Citizen ?

      Essentially, Who are the “sub-surface” protagonists of Joe Citizen ?

      It is said ;

      “Attack is the best means of defence.’

      What “can” Joe Citizen do as the smartest attack ?

      What “should” Joe Citizen do as the smartest attack ?

      And, what would the retaliation be by the protagonists [ "surface" protagonist(s) & "sub-surface" protagonist(s) ] of Joe Citizen be ?

      Please feel free to add further relevant thoughts.

  17. McCawber

    The central banjs have failed us because the politicians have failed us.
    While the printing presses were/are running, the US and France to name but two should have been getting their econimic and budgetary houses in order.
    Resukt bail in legislation and a pending busy fan.

    • It is perhaps the inverse. Now the Central Bankers control the politicians. Everyone is bought and paid for. The devil is in the details.


      Nobody ever talks about the money system and hoe all the money is created for nothing and put on the books of the bank as an asset that earns interest and a loan that must be repaid. No wonder the economy is breaking apart at the seams. No matter what David or other economists say there is no recovery that I can read about.

      The debts just get bigger and bigger both in absolute terms, whether or not discounted for inflation or calculated as a percentage of annual income or Gross domestic product OR WHAT EVER OTHER METRIC IS USED TO TRY TO FOOL US.

      What are we going to do about the production of debt, the payment of debt, or do we continue to just ignore the elephant in the room?

  18. Original-Ed


    The madness of the seventies was something else. Traffic jams in O’Connell St. at 2am every morning. If 400 workers from a workforce of 600,turned up on any given day, it was considered acceptable – partly due to a 6 day sick benefit scheme from the state competing with a 5 day working week. Two weeks sick leave on a doctor’s note normally meant that amount time on the Costa del Sol or in some cases, some time to double gob in the black.
    The property ladder was rocket propelled – a punitive mortgage at 14% would morph into very manageable amount within two years.
    FF scrapped motor tax and house rates, so house speculation become a no brainer – with capital gains running at 40% – it meant no gain, no pain as with rates. The legacy from that move is what landed us in the mire this last time round.
    Charlie became King and all in his constituency were now on the pigs back.
    It was a slot in time – one old timer remarked that it was Christmas day, every day.

  19. McCawber

    Looking back to 2008.
    The ECB was seriously annoyed at Ireland for extending the deposit guarantee.
    Their plan might well have been a bail in.
    David was in favour of the guarantee and has always defended it, in principle.
    So ECB were never going to burn the bondholders. Instead they were going toburn the deposit holders
    And that’s the way it’s going to be the next time there is a run on a bank.
    They have a cheek and governments will fall if it happens but not before the money is gone!

  20. Shane F

    They are trying to abolish the 500 Euro note.

    Has anyone else noticed recently that ATM’s dispense 20 Euro notes instead of 50 Euro notes?

    They’re now planning for NIRP and making it difficult for the bigger players to stash cash instead.

  21. The Japanese equivalent of the “plunge Protection Team” is on steroids and now buying up the Japanese stock market. all in the idea that this will increase business confidence. What is not understood by me is how this will improve the business model of anything except for those currently invested in the stock market who go along for the ride will receive a wealth effect. how this improves consumption and production and increases employment beats me??


  22. If we used proper money rather than the fraudulent paper charade that we do there would be no debate about rising wages being required. In fact there would be a continuous subtle rise in the purchase power of the steady wage packet.

    Stable money leads to gentle deflation and a lowering of costs and prices as all are able to benefit in the increases in efficiency and production of a properly functioning economy. Stable money rids us of the so called economic cycle which is a result of the inflationary expansion of the money supply practiced today in spades to infinity.

    Read Dr. Ron Paul

    The Mythical Merits of Paper Money
    By Dr. Ron Paul

    One economic myth is that paper money is wealth. The proponents of big government oppose honest money for a very specific reason.

    Inflation, the creation of new money, is used to finance government programs not generally endorsed by the producing members of society.

    It is a deceptive tool whereby a “tax” is levied without the people as a whole being aware of it. Since the recipients of the newly created money, as well as the politicians, whose only concern is the next election, benefit from this practice, it’s in their interest to perpetuate it.

    For this reason, misconceptions are promulgated about the “merits” of paper money and the “demerits” of gold. Some of the myths are promoted deliberately, but many times they are a result of convenient rationalizations and ignorance.

    Paper money is not wealth. Wealth comes from production. There’s no other way to create it. Paper money managers and proponents of government intervention believe that money itself — especially if created out of thin air — is wealth. A close corollary of this myth — which they also believe — is that money supply growth is required for economic growth.

    Paper money is not wealth. Wealth comes from production. There’s no other way to create it.
    Paper money is not wealth. Wealth comes from production. There’s no other way to create it. Capital comes from production in excess of consumption. This excess is either reinvested, saved, or loaned to others to be used to further produce and invest.

    Duplicating paper money units creates no wealth whatsoever, it distorts the economy, and it steals wealth from savers. It acts as capital in the early stages of inflation only because it staels real wealth from those who hold dollars or have loaned them to someone.

    Instead of economic growth being dependent on money growth as the paper money advocates claim, great economic harm comes from central banks creating new money out of thin air. This leads to the sort of economic stagnation and economic decline that we are experiencing today.

    Inflation — increasing the supply of paper money — is the cause of malinvestment and the business cycle, and literally destroys the capital needed for economic growth and stability. The formation of capital through savings is discouraged or eliminated by a paper money system.

    Instead of paper money producing economic growth, it accomplished the opposite. If money growth were necessary for economic growth, the 1970’s would have been a great decade. During this period of time the Federal Reserve nearly tripled the total money supply but the economy grew only 37%.

    Although the supply under a gold standard would in all probability increase at the rate of two to three percent per year, this growth is not a requirement for gold to function as a sound currency. This natural or market increase in the money supply easily accommodates population growth and economic growth as long as prices are freely adjusting.

    If population or economic growth presents a need for “more” purchasing media, prices merely adjust downward if the money supply is not growing. In the latter part of the nineteenth century this occurred.

    Wholesale prices dropped 47% from 1879 to 1900 and economic growth averaged nearly four percent per year. Obviously, although prices were decreasing, there was no depression.

    While an increase in the supply of money is never needed to produce economic growth, under a gold standard there might be honest money growth (i.e. not money created out of thin air by the politicians and bankers for the benefit of special interests) and this would serve to smooth out price adjustments.

    The myth that paper money is wealth has another corollary: the myth that there’s “not enough gold” for reestablishing a gold standard. But this is merely a device used by paper money advocates to confuse the uninformed, and should carry no weight in the debate of gold versus paper.

    Hans Sennholz explains this clearly in his essay “No Shortage of Gold”:

    On the other hand, if the supply of goods increases while that of money remains unchanged, a tendency toward enhancement of the purchasing power of money results. This fact is probably the most popular reason advanced today for policies of monetary expansion. “Our expanding national economy,” economic and monetary authorities proclaim, “requires an ever-growing supply of money and credit in order to assure economic stability.”

    No one can seriously maintain that present expansionary policies have brought about economic stability. During the last forty years of almost continuous monetary expansion, whatever else it may have achieved, did not facilitate economic stability. Rather it gave our age it’s economic characteristic — unprecedented instability.

    Ludwig von Mises, in his book A Critique of Interventionism (1929), clearly denounces the belief that government can create wealth by printing paper money. He explains:

    By its very nature, a government decree that “it be” cannot create anything that has not been created before. Only the naive inflationists could believe that government can create anything; its orders cannot even evict anything from the world of reality, but they can evict from the world of the permissible. Government cannot make man richer, but it can make man poorer. This is a powerful political and economic message, and yet it seems that so few understand it.

    Unfortunately, the poorer the people get, the more economic problems we have, the more inflation we endure, and the higher the interest rates go, since more people demand government intervention. This trend has to be changed if we expect to preserve our freedoms and our standard of living.

    Fact: Paper money is not wealth, it steals wealth.

    • patricia03

      But Tony approximately 97% of all money in circulation is created by the Banks and only approximately 3% by Government. That is why we have these world wide real estate bubbles because the Banks regard land/houses as good security and production of goods and services not. In my view until Governments controls the Banks’ lending practices there will be no way out of this world wide debt culture.

      • “In my view until Governments controls the Banks’ lending practices there will be no way out of this world wide debt culture.”

        Exactly correct.

        all that money creation is always loaned into existence.
        The central banks must be destroyed, closed, shut down.

        If the money were issued by Treasury then the same amount can be issued into existence but it would not be a debt. The result would be no national debt and no interest payments to make.

        The government could theoretically run for ever with no taxes levied but just the creation of money to pay the operations of money. Thus the money would be earned into existence and not loaned into existence.

        The one major problem then is the potential to continually expand the money supply to infinity which is hyper inflationary and leads to the destruction of the currency just as is happening now.

        As Ron Paul points out, there is no requirement to increase the money supply in order to have a sound economy. In fact it is imperative that the money supply does not expand. So the question is how to do this.

        The one mechanism that has worked is to tie the production of money to something of value , useful, and rare. The one substance that works best is gold and to a lesser degree silver, and less again copper.

        To produce a largely debt free and functioning economy requires that the money system be based on precious metals.

        Also the production of money by government must not be a monopoly. The legal tender laws must be repealed. The production of money should be like all things, open to competitive alternatives. Then what is used in the main will be decided by the people them selves.

        Given a choice people will opt for the money that suits them best. Likely that would be a return to a form of gold standard enhanced by the use of digital transfers for ease of trade. Above all it must be recognized that good money must be private property not produced under government license.

      • StephenKenny

        The central banks are responsible for setting the maximum amount that a bank can lend, per $ of capital that they hold. The central banks also define what can be included in this capital calculation (it’s called Tier 1 capital, or similar).
        Until about 25 years ago, these rules were tight, and very carefully regulated. Bankers and brokers, however wealthy, could, and did, go to prison breaking the rules.
        Today, almost anything can be used as Tier 1 capital – and the regulators and courts are now part of the financial system, so there is no longer any effective regulation, just acres of meaningless paperwork. Occasionally, a bank or broker’s shareholder’s get fined, but there’s nothing else.
        It’s really sad to see what’s happened to it, especially in the USA. I used to have a lot of respect for the FBI, DOJ, SEC and so on. These guys were tough, effective, and generally on the side of the angels. On the insider trading scandals of the late 1980s, crooked little Wall Street types were led out in handcuffs and lambasted in the press. In even in London, a few high flying ‘financiers’ went to prison.
        Today, it’s all so different. Law enforcement and the courts are staffed by rather pathetic, sleazy, little people, who seem almost desperate to prostrate themselves at the alters of finance, tussling with the media to get their pompous noses deeper in the dung.

        • Corrupt money leads to a corrupted society, Stephen.

          We also have to bear in mind that this is all pre-planned and deliberate policy and not just random happenstance.

    • McCawber

      The simple answer as to why people are poorer today is technology.
      Or maybe the inability of politicians to figure out how to redistribute the wealth that technology creates.
      Technology ultimately will replace all jobs and that’s getting this redistribution right is one of the most important tasks facing humanity.
      The FED, ECB and governments are trying to fix the wrong thing.
      They are trying to boost demand and thereby create jobs.
      It won’t/can’t work because technology is replacing more jobs than demand is creating.
      Humanity is heading in one of two directions.
      Get the redistribution and we will arrive at Utopia.
      Get it wrong and we’ll get Dystopia.
      I don’t hear any politicians or any of our great thinkers talking about this but this issue is the granddaddy of elephants in the room.

      • “The simple answer as to why people are poorer today is technology.
        Or maybe the inability of politicians to figure out how to redistribute the wealth that technology creates.”

        Redistribution of wealth is out of the communist manifesto. It does not work.

        Technology does not make people poorer. That is the Luddite view.

        The simple truth is that our money system is the problem. It is manipulated to extreme. The distortions in the economy result in malinvestment and inefficiencies. Our current system channels the wealth to the operators of the money system and to those operating closest to the source of that money, the financial classes. The wealth is robbed from the productive to the operators of the money system. It is designed to do exactly that.

        From the time of the stone age technology has benefited mankind, since the invention of the wheel on through the industrial revolution to today.

        • McCawber

          When technology eliminates all jobs thenyou need a system to distribute the wealth created by the technolog so that humanity can live and thrive.
          The “ideoligy” to achieve this hasn’t yet been “invented”.
          Definitely not communism.
          A form of Socialism maybe BUT the risk from this future is that the human race will atrophy and die.
          Maybe Space, The Final Frontier might provide the stimulus.
          The one thing we will always have is our curiosity.

          • It will be space of course. Been saying it for years. Money spent on space is not sent up there in a rocket and burned – it’s spent on jobs and innovation here on Earth. Stupid people don’t understand that fact.

          • One could have argued the same thing for the 1800′s Industrial Revolution. Until then 60-80% of peoples employment and work was associated with farming and the production of food.
            But along with the Industrial came the Agrarian revolution (seldom mentioned) where the industrial process replaced horse and mules as engine power until now in advanced societies only 2-5% of the population is involved in agriculture and the rest released to be available for all the things we do today.
            Cheap food in unimaginable quantities is produced. This frees more people than ever imagined. Quality is suspect but that is being worked on.
            during this past 200 years has seen the rise of middle classes in greater numbers than ever in history.

            It is not technology that reduces wages or channels wealth into the hands of the few it is the financial arrangement caused by the corrupted money system.

            One has to go to the root cause of the problem to get a solution. The solution is a system that allows diversification of the production of the wealth rather than the production by a few and then seek to redistribute it.

            That involves reverting to an honest system of money as we used to use to great effect.

            The period of 1860-1910 saw the greatest rise of affluence spread around the US and their advent as a world super power. At that time they were effectively on a gold standard of currency. 1913 saw the creation of the first modern central bank and it has been all downhill from there. 1944 saw the Bretton Woods agreement where all currencies were pegged to the US dollar which was allegedly backed by gold.

            Profligate government spending lead to the abandonment of gold in the US as all private property called gold was seized by the state in a effort to balance the books. Stolen at 20 plus per ounce and immediately revalued to 35 an ounce.

            Then because of continued over spending and the expansion of the money supply Nixon reneged on the Bretton Woods agreement and the US dollar was no longer tied to gold. There was now no restriction on the production of money by any country as there was no anchor of any kind.

            We now live in a time where the money system of all nations is totally corrupted and loses value every day. This can be seen in the rising prices of all necessaries. ( at the local market I questioned why the price of free range organic , farm produced, eggs had risen from 6 dollars a dozen to 7.50. I was told the price of organic grain to feed the chickens is now so high he cannot make a profit at 7.50. He is going out of production soon he said.) Our food prices are under extreme pressure to rise more and more.(the local supermarket says that the food increase is 20% OVER THE LAST 12 MONTHS) Blame the loss of purchasing power of the currency on the blatant expansion of the amount of currency as it unleashes higher and higher inflation in the midst of a depression.

            In the meantime the financial instruments within the economy bound upward in value because of the interference and manipulation of government and central banks. Government is manipulation everything that gives the impression of a solid economy. In this case the rich get richer and the rest are subjected to the increasing poverty unleashed by inflation.

            Rather than more manipulation of the economy by “Redistribution” we need less involvement and a return to a system of honest money.

            Without the abandonment of a debt based money system that charges interest on our medium of exchange we are doomed to poverty and financial serfdom.

  23. McCawber

    Perhaps David you might consider an article on how technology is changing the economic landscape of the world.
    Perhaps a new branch of economic ideology is required.

    • Yes we need a public unveiling of the current money system .
      People need to know that the the issuance of all our money except coin, is as a debt. That debt charges interest.
      Why are we encumbered with such a system?

      A question? Do you Mr. McCawber understand that our money is issued as a debt. I don’t think so, but you neither agree or disagree but are silent on the question.

      Do you agree that the current money system advantages the bankers and financial holders products while pauperizing the 99.99% of the rest of the population?

      I am interested in your response and the reasons for your opinions.

      • McCawber

        I think there is a need for plausible denial by the politicians.
        I also think that the bankers realised the politicians need for plausible denial and took ownership of that need..
        The same applies to regulators in other industries.
        Politicians are elected, central bankers and regulators are not.
        The EU has gone even further where commissioners are appointed, not elected.
        The result of the above is that the non-elected power brokers have become too powerful.
        And that power is corrupting everything.
        This leads me to believe that our money system has been corrupted.

        • Thanks for your response.

          “This leads me to believe that our money system has been corrupted.”

          There is empirical evidence uncovered by GATA regarding the financial manipulation of finances, regulation and trade. http://www.gata.org They have a comprehensive website and daily emails. A free site to stay or become educated.

          Here is Ron Paul on fiat and the requirement for competition in money and the reintroduction of gold, silver coin as currency. competition can only occur with he repeal of the legal tender laws and the closing of central banking systems.


          Do you believe the corruption of our money supply goes as far as the fact that
          A. central banking funds issued are always issued as a loan and are always created from nothing. That is the money does not really exist.

          B. that a lot of this money is issued to the country as a loan and becomes the national debt on which the citizens have to pay interest and have to repay the debt also from work and productivity.
          B(1) Money issued to commercial banks by the central bank is a loan. This loan carries interest (positive or negative) and the commercial bank uses that money as a reserve. Based on the reserve the commercial bank uses what is called the fractional reserve banking system to loan out 10-30 times on average the amount of the reserves. As these loans are issued new money is created from nothing by a ledger entry and you are charge interest on this newly created money.
          Thus the bank can make a fortune conjuring fictitious money out of thin air and scooping interest from it to their own account.

          In this way the central and commercial banks form 97% of our money as a debt charge interest.

          In this way we a tied to financial serfdom and bondage Mr. McCawber.

          So it is the banking system that is corrupt. It in turn corrupts the politicians and then all else is corrupted in its turn.

          There is no other long term solution than to reform the money supply as suggest by Ron Paul et al and a small aware group of writers and commentators.

          Any changes are resisted by the bankers/politicians with strident bellowing of pending disaster if any change is made. The politics of fear and deception rule the day.

          • McCawber

            Greed is what corrupts.
            Banks feed the greed.
            IE. A politician has a choice.
            Bent or crooked.
            It’s their decision not the banks.
            States don’t have to borrow the “free” money.
            Who has the power to disband the FED and become the controller of the money supply?
            That is the question you should be asking.
            If the answer is nobody then the end is nigh.
            My point about technology is independent of the banking problem.
            This specifically relates to how society should address the impact of technology on humanities future.
            While I think too much money has/is being printed the real problems are.
            Where is the money being spent and by whom?
            Why are spread betting, cfd, shorts etc still being allowed.
            If the CBs won’t do something about why aren’t our politicians acting.
            The derivative “problem” appears to have been around for far too long.
            We are back in too big to fail territory again.
            How in the name of all that is proper have derivatives or any other financial instruments been allowed to become a CRASH the SYSTEM event.

          • McCawber

            On a personal level the key is can I afford my debt and how much contingency do I have.
            I doubt the rest of the state and corporate world are living by that maxim.
            But they have managed to make their behaviour my problem and my problem alone (speaking for the people )
            Given that I have lost this battle I’m very concerned to ensure that the battle for technology created wealth is won by the people.

          • I take your point that it is a human problem. the accumulation of unserviceable debt is a problem of greed. Wanting what cannot be afforded. There problem becomes yours when those who amounted the “community debt” without your say so, force you to pay “your fair share”.

            However too many people, the majority, have no comprehension as to the workings of the money system and modern creation of money. It is not even taught to economists as those I meet have no idea what is going on and, in fact, deny the truth.

            So, there is no overall solution until the people in general understand the problem. They will not understand until educated and my experience is that most refuse the education when presented with the evidence.

            The truth is so hard to comprehend that it is rejected out of hand.

            The truth is most “can’t handle the truth”

          • McCawber

            The people are not totally innocent either.
            They are always demanding.
            The phrase “I want it and I want it now”
            comes to mind.
            There is not one visionary leader in the
            Donald Trump is about the closest to it in that he at least seems to have an opinion that is not totally tainted by PC.

  24. How the big corporations manipulate the stocks prices and earnings by buying back their own shares using historically cheap money. The executives pay themselves bonuses because the share prices rose while the investor gets a rising stock price. However the actual earning have not increased and the company is overloaded with more debt. It is a recipe for a near future stock drop where the investor gets wiped out even as the corporate insiders make off like bandits.

    It is a financial manipulation where the 99% get skinned because of the artificially low interest rates and cheap money because of QE by central bankers.


  25. Truthist

    -Anyways, it is very wrong that any salary increases be given to the Civil Service.
    They are an albatross around our neck as it is.

    Of course, there are a great many fine individuals who are Civil Servants.
    But, as a body they should NOT be getting more than the typical salary of their equivalent role in the Private Sector.
    Actually, they should be getting less.
    And, their jobs should not be for more than 10 years or so.
    Every citizen should get to be a Civil Servant by a certain age.
    It should be designed to be national service.
    This would help to clean up the corrupt Irish State.

    And, I do not fall for the oft paraded bleeding-hearts montage of the “starting-off” Garda[- Landlord ] nor Nurse ;
    Their circumstances are actually extremely cushy for Apprentices.

    Our regular contributor Pat Flannery is regularly uncovering the extreme poor work output from the nursing “Profession” in the Irish State.

    And, the Apprentice Garda[-Landlords ] are in most cases augmenting their own family’s fiefdom which includes increasing their numbers & rank in the Garda Apparatus.
    Yes, there are families with very ruthless ambitious strategies to have fiefdoms in the Civil Service of the Irish State.

  26. patricia03

    I get so sick of hearing it is all the fault of the “Fed”. Most of the world does not have a Fed” and if the “Fed” was abolished the problem would still continue. I do think the problem is greater than that. Personally, I think that this idea of minimal government IS the problem. Years ago Government, throughout the world, had strong legislation to prevent this from happening but now all that has been repealed in the name of the “freedom for the Market”. If politicians had the guts to pass further legislation it all could be stopped but they haven’t and it won’t. It does make you wonder who is controling everything. This has all happened before. In the 1930s, and it resulted in a World War. We don’t seem to realise it but there is another World War is going on but the amphitheatre is now the Middle East. The protagonists are the same.

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