BRUSSELS, Nov. 16 (Xinhua) -- No bailout plan for Ireland was activated after Eurozone finance ministers ended their monthly meeting here on Tuesday night, but officials said that talks will intensify to prepare for possible help to the country's troubled banking sector.
European Commissioner for Economic and Monetary Affairs Olli Rehn told a press conference after the meeting that it's up to the Irish government to decide whether to ask for external help.......
So, officially the Irish have not requested aid and there is no bailout.
Unoficially, planning is advancing for a very limited $27 Billion bailout
of the Irish banks - recapitalizing them and taking the strain off the
Irish Gov. debt financing. Ireland will still proceed with severe budget
cuts to public spending and not default or restructure sovereign debt.
And even that $27 Billion is not a sure thing. Just talk.
The Irish and the EU are using talk of a partial bailout to take the heat off.
They're kicking the can down the road and playing the long game.
Cute. It means the Fed/WallSt. hysteria mob
now have to try sustain that hysteria in the
longer term. _________________ Minds are like parachutes.
They only function when open.
On face value, this reads like a 'F**k You' to
the bond market, speculators, Fed and Wall St.
COMMENTS BY IRISH FINANCE
MINISTER BRIAN LENIHAN
On Irish banking system:
"Any assistance in relation to resolving the problem of the Irish banking system will be most welcome."
On financial assistance:
"Financial aid to Ireland is not inevitable."
"The question of direct assistance or transferring money to Ireland immediately did not arise and does not arise, but we do have to examine security and stability that can be brought into the system."
"I wouldn't say I came under intense pressure to accept a bailout, or under pressure to do anything. I had a clear mandate from the Irish government."
"When you borrow you lose a little bit of sovereignty, no matter who you are, but we share sovereignty in the euro zone. It's Germany's currency as much as it is Ireland's."
On market fluctuations in the euro zone:
"It is clearly important that those who wish to help us will look at all the facts on the ground. There are serious market disturbances that jeopardise not just Ireland but the euro zone." "We are guaranteed the stability and support of the ECB."
_________________ Minds are like parachutes.
They only function when open.
Ireland has already lost part of its national sovereignty and will embrace the EU's offer of a multibillion euro rescue plan by the end of January, TASC, a leading economic thinktank in Dublin predicted today.
The policy institute said the international bond markets were already dictating Irish fiscal policy during the present crisis taking control out of the hands of Irish taxpayers and voters.
Tom McDonnell, senior economic policy analyst at TASC, said the odds were stacked in favour of Ireland taking up the bailout by early next year.
"We have already pumped €50bn into the banking system, €25bn of which went into the notorious Anglo Irish Bank and the rest into the other Irish banks.
It is likely that figure will rise as more money is needed to shore up the Irish banking system. Our overall GDP is around €157bn so it is obvious you can't cover all those costs on your own. The European Central Bank is going to be our lender of last resort," he said.
McDonnell believes that the Irish government will wait to see what impact next month's budget, in which €6bn cuts in public spending will be announced, has.
One of the biggest fears in Dublin is that an EU bailout might threaten a key driver of Ireland's economic boom from the late 1990s.
The Republic still enjoys one of the lowest capital taxation rates in the developed world at just 12.5%. The rate has attracted numerous hi-tech multinational corporations to Ireland.
The sector continues to generate jobs with 7,000 created in 2010 out of 67 foreign direct investment projects.
Overall 70 of Fortune's top 100 global corporations have their European headquarters in Ireland.
Mike Smyth, an economist who sits as an adviser on the EU's economic and social committee in Brussels, stressed that protecting this low capital taxation is of paramount importance to the Irish government.
"One of the main reasons why the Irish government is reluctant to accept an EU bailout is that the quid pro quo for billions of European aid would the revision of Ireland's low capital tax rates.
They fear that the EU will ask the Irish to review their low taxation rates for corporations. Even if news broke out that there would to be a revision that could be enough to spook chief executives all around the world who were thinking of investing in the Republic," he said.
Smyth said the removal of Ireland's right to impose its own capital taxation rate would be a serious blow to the country's overall national sovereignty.
The sense of crisis has been as urgent in Dublin as it has been in Brussels where eurozone finance ministers were discussing the Republic's dire financial situation. Newspaper billboards screamed: "Only 48 hours to save the euro."
Jim Power, senior economist of the Irish Financial Services Centre, said it was now "inevitable" that the government would seek a bailout. Power predicted that this handout would be "dressed up" as a bank rescue plan. Irish banks need further recapitalisation to the tune of more than €40bn
The massive cost of saving the Irish banking system has pushed national debt to an unprecedented 32% of the Republic's GDP.
The banks failed because during the Celtic Tiger boom they doled out billions to builders and developers on the promise that Irish property prices would continue to soar. With the credit crunch and recession those prices collapsed leaving the banks with enormous debts.
As finance minister Brian Lenihan beat a path to Brussels to persuade fellow Europeans that they can handle this crisis without surrendering sovereignty, an Irish government report revealed the existence of more than 2,800 so-called "ghost estates" across the country.
These are private housing developments built during the bank-fuelled property boom that now lie empty, areas of desolation and economic loss, the most potent symbols arguably of Ireland's fall from Celtic Tiger prosperity to a nation going with its begging bowl to its European partners for a multibillion bailout.
The Republic still enjoys one of the lowest capital taxation rates in the developed world at just 12.5%. The rate has attracted numerous hi-tech multinational corporations to Ireland.
This has been a thorn in the side of NWO socialists for quite some time. These Irish plolicies encourage the development of small and medium size business enterprises - which is something that NWO folks are determined to stamp out.
Irish policies are completely toxic to small and medium business.
These low capital tax rates benefit the multinational corporations.
Brian Lenihan, Ireland’s finance minister, said it was the “attack”
on the euro that had prompted Ireland to seek assistance from the
European Union and the International Monetary Fund.
“Ireland has been the point of the attack on that currency in recent weeks and it’s important that we build up our defence and ensure that the currency itself is protected. And for that reason, the Irish government will fully engage with this process and work with the mission to ensure that everything possible is done to secure the Irish banking system”
Read that carefully.
In all the hysteria about the IMF taking over Ireland etc., what is being
missed is that European leaders know that the Fed/Wall St. is behind
this crisis. So for now in Europe, it's all for one, and one for all.
(Though the Fed has many moles/shills in our system)
The EU is going to drag out the process. Y'see the sooner it fixes the
Irish situation, the sooner the sharks move on to target Portugal and
then Spain. Pure financial cannibalism, of course.
The EU will also deploy the minimum funding required to patch the Irish
leak, because it does not to set a precedent for wholesale IMF intervention.
Here's the Irish Finance Minister again:
He said the Irish government and its EU partners were still examining “options” on what shape a package of financial assistance might take. But he said: “There is no question of loading on to the Irish sovereign and the Irish state some kind of unspecified burden. That’s why the government took great care not to make a formal application at this stage but to engage in intensive discussions to see exactly what the options are.”
He said what “may be required may not in fact be an actual transfer of money now, but a demonstration of how much money can be made available if further difficulties materialise”.
So the Eu preference is for a loan line to be set up, against
which the Irish banks can draw down when needed.
I can see Ireland opening up the issue of bondholders taking haircuts.
Angela Merkel raised it an an issue to be addressed from 2013 onwards.
But if bondholders taking a hit is just and fair in 2013,
then Ireland can assert that it is just and fair right now!
Bad news for bondholders, NWO banks and the Wall St. mob.
There are many levels to this situation.
Geopolitical, political, financial, social.
This is just one aspect. _________________ Minds are like parachutes.
They only function when open.
There is an eerie calm that has descended on the Irish story. IMF and EU folks are ‘up country’ taking a look-see and kicking some bank tires. The market for Irish debt has stabilized and the local equity index has improved at the prospect of some sort of deal that will “fix” the problem. Even the Euro has had its head lifted at the prospect.
I understand that a bailout of Ireland and Portugal is better for the markets than a crash and burn, but I am surprised at the euphoric atmosphere as we get closer to the biggest sovereign blow up in a very long time.
Speaking of sovereign blowups there is one happening in the
US Muni market.
There are a number of factors hitting Muni’s of late. Some are technical, some yield curve related. But there is more happening than just these things. It reminds me a bit of what happened to Ireland before they were forced to fold. Some things hanging on the market:
-There is a large 30 day supply of ~$23b. The highest in seven years.
-Treasury long-term yields have seen a very big back up since the announcement of QE-2.
-Philadelphia and San Francisco have been downgraded. This is very “upsetting” to Muni players.
-There is uncertainty regarding what the tax brackets will be in 40 days. If you don’t know what your tax rate is it is hard to figure if you should invest in Muni’s.
-There is uncertainty regarding the Build America Now Bond program. The uncertainty (it also expires in 40 days) is adding to the anxiety in the market.
The citizens of Ireland have been forced over the last two years to give the bond holders of Anglo Irish bank 20 billion euros. WHY? The Irish government recently told its people the 20 billion was not enough and they MUST give the same bond holders another 10 to 20 billion euros. WHO are these special people called Bond Holders that they must be so carefully protected even at the cost of despoiling a nation?
I tried to find out. I failed. 15th October the British Blogger Guido Fawkes published a list of the bond holders. I would like to thank Mr Fawkes, and thank Unclear for posting the link and bringing it to my attention.
So those are the names but WHO are they? I thought this was something I could help with, to add my contribution to Mr Fawkes' break-through.
It is worth knowing who they are because the Irish government has said more than once that one of the reasons the bond holders had to be protected and could not, must not, be made to suffer any losses, even though it would be PERFECTLY legal to do so, is because the bond holders are pension funds for poor Irish widows and cooperative savings funds for orphans and 'ordinary folk'. A little poetic exageration there, but only a little.
This reason, for why the Bond holders must not take any loss, was trotted out to bolster the first answer given, which was that if Ireland pissed off the bond holders then they would refuse to ever deal with Ireland ever again and Ireland would never be able to borrow ever again, ever, and everyone would die in penury, friendless and cold. That first reason started to look like it might not hold, when the Germans started to talk rather too openly about how it might be best for all, them especially, if Greece did 're-structure' its debts (default - a teeny bit). When no one said it would be the end for Greece, Ireland's 'the sky will fall in' reason for not asking its bond holders to share the pain started to look like what it was, a politically motivated lie. Thus the grannies and orphans had to be hurriedly wheeled out.
So, are the bond holders widow's pension funds and orphans' savings accounts? Well actually, NO. That too was just another lie from the morally degenerate and cringingly servile Irish government.
But don't take my word for it. Lets look at exactly who the bond holders are.
But first be clear about my method. Over all I have decided to compare Ireland's wealth with that of its bond holders.
I have looked at what the named companies do - according to their own literature. I have looked to see if they are in fact owned by someone else and if so who and where the companies are registered and based. And I have looked at the sort of wealth we are talking about. On this last point, I have looked not at their market value - because that, as we all know, is a matter of creative accountancy and is also often not something the companies like to list, but at their 'assets under management'.
Assets under management gives us a view of the total amount of wealth these companies deal with so we can compare it to the total wealth of Ireland. Its GDP. Where a company is, in fact, owned by a larger one, I have used the parent company's assets on the grounds that on the other side, Anglo Irish has been treated as a subsidiary of Ireland and the entire wealth of the nation is being deployed and called upon.
So, on one side we have Anglo Irish and its 'parent company'/owner, Ireland and its 'bond' holders the people of Ireland. On the other, we have the companies listed as bond holders and the larger companies who own them and who are thus the ultimate beneficiaries and interested parties in those bonds.
On with the show!
Of the 80 listed companies only 7 listed pensions and being a cooperative savings institution. Of those only 4 listed churches and unions as their clients, the others could well have been big pension funds. The churches and unions in question were in Germany not Ireland. Those seven companies are amongst the smallest of Anglo Irish's bond holders. I only have figures for four of the seven. The largest, Union Investments of Germany, has a mere €165 billion in assets under management.
The total assets under management which I was able to compile from publicly available figures is €20,871,150,000,000. That is an underestimate because the bond holders who turn out to be Private and Swiss banks don't publish any figures. So Anglo Irish's 'bond holders' hold and invest MORE than 20.8 trillion euros. Guido lists those bond holders as holding between them 4 Billion euros in Anglo Irish bonds.
Now, in my opinion both figures are likely to be wrong. Certainly my figure is a large underestimate. But taking them at face value Anglo Irish would account for an one 5000th of the total assets being managed by all the bond holders. So would even a total default by Anglo Irish cause that much, let alone systemic, pain and risk? Why are the 'Bond holders' and the Irish government so concerned that the Irish people be forced to take the loss and pay the debts for them?
Now lets look at the other side of the equation, at Ireland itself. Well Ireland's GDP before the crash, in 2008, was ... drum roll please... €207 billion. Or 0.207 trillion.
SO.... on one side we have Ireland whose bond holders, its people, have between them a total GDP wealth of 0.207 trillion euros. Who are being FORCED, against their will, to pay Anglo Irish bank's debts to its bond holders, who between them hold 20.8 Trillion euros. The people of Ireland are paying to, and protecting the wealth and power of, people who have 100 times more wealth!
So where do these wealthy bond holders live and work?
Germany has the most with 15 of the bond holders. Who between them hold 5.3 trillion euros.
France is next with 10 bond holders. Who have about 4 trillion to keep them warm.
Britain is third with 9 who have around 3 trillion.
The Swiss have 6 but who have about 8.5 trillion.
America has only three and hold only a trillion.
Other nations include, Spain, Belgium, Portugal, Holland Finland, Norway, Sweden, Poland, South Africa and Italy.
All these figures are very rough. The figure for Switzerland is certainly under because Private Swiss banks just don't publish figures. What we can say for sure, figures or no figures, is these are not banks investing widow's pensions or orphan's pennies.
So who are they? Well many of the bond holders are privately held banks, which list their activities as asset management for off-shore, non-resident and high value individuals. To give you an example, one of the private banks is EFG Bank of Luxembourg. EFG stands for European Financial Group which is the third largest private bank group in Switzerland. It manages over €7.5 trillion in assets. It is 'mostly', 40%, owned by Mr Spiro Latsis, son of a Greek shipping magnate. He also owns 30% of Hellenic Petroleum. His personal fortune is estimated to be about $9 Billion.
Now there is absolutely no suggestion that Mr Latsis has ever done anything wrong or illegal. And his holdings are, I am quite sure, perfectly legal and above board. But when we talk of Anglo Irish's bond holders it is Mr Latsis and those with his sort of wealth who we are talking about NOT widows and orphans or you and me. It is therefore worth remembering, the next time an Irish politician, or any of our politicians for that matter, say that some welfare payment can no longer be afforded, it is because the money that could have paid for it has been given to the bond holders, people not unlike Mr Latsis, instead. The Irish people are paying and protecting the interests of people like Mr Latsis over the interests of their own children. And it is their own politicians who are doing this.
Other bond holders call themselves 'asset management' firms. The fifth largest asset management firm in the world is one of the bond holders. Others are insurance companies. The 6th and 9th largest in the world, to be specific. Others are the largest banks, Deutsche, Soc Gen, Barclay's, PNB Paribas, Unicredit (who don't appear on the list but own Pioneer Investments),and Wells Fargo (also not on the list but who own European Credit Management). Then there is Goldman. No show without the squid.
Kleinwort Benson Investors is a bond holder. But Kleinwort is owned by a Belgian holding company, RHJ which is part owned by Mr Timothy Collins. Mr Collins also sits on the board of Citigroup. So he too is one of the bond holders the Irish people are 'helping'.
Finally, a very large number of the banks who are Anglo Irish's bond holders, are members of something called the Euro Banking Association. All the large European, most of the large US banks, Swiss, Japanese, Nordic and some Chinese are members. The chairperson is Mr Hansjorg Nymphius of Deutsche Bank. Other board members are from JP Morgan Chase, RBS, Bank of Ireland, West LB(bankrupt), BNP Paribas, ABN Ambro, Dexia and Banco Santander.
Its a list which could double as the list of Anglo Irish's bond holders. The EBA was set up in Paris in 1985, since when it has been and is, central to promoting European Union financial integration and the area's banking interests. The EBA has close ties to the ECB.
I will leave you to digest this disgusting bolus of self serving wealth protection.
The only thing left to say is this. The bond holders of Anglo Irish are a very good guide to the identity of the bond holders of ALL OUR BANKS. The bond holders being protected, in every nation, on the advice of the banks and financial class, are THE BANKS AND THE WEALTHIEST OF THE FINANCIAL CLASS.
Exclusive: Republican terror group vows to resume mainland attacks with banks and bankers now potential targets
Henry McDonald, Ireland correspondent guardian.co.uk
Tuesday 14 September 2010 21.03 BST
The IRA bombed targets in the City during the 1990s. Now the Real IRA may use the same tactic. Photograph: Rex Features
Banks and bankers are now potential targets for the Real IRA, leaders of the dissident republican terror group have warned in an exclusive interview with the Guardian. Despite having only 100 activists they also said that targets in England remained a high priority.
In an attempt to tap into the intense hostility towards the banks on both sides of the Irish border they branded bankers as "criminals" and said: "We have a track record of attacking high-profile economic targets and financial institutions such as the City of London. The role of bankers and the institutions they serve in financing Britain's colonial and capitalist system has not gone unnoticed.
"Let's not forget that the bankers are the next-door neighbours of the politicians. Most people can see the picture: the bankers grease the politicians' palms, the politicians bail out the bankers with public funds, the bankers pay themselves fat bonuses and loan the money back to the public with interest. It's essentially a crime spree that benefits a social elite at the expense of many millions of victims."
But security sources in Northern Ireland point out say the Real IRA lacks the logistical resources of the Provisional IRA to prosecute a bombing campaign similar to the ones that devastated the City of London in the early 1990s or the Canary Wharf bomb in 1996. Although the Real IRA has access to explosives it has yet to carry out large-scale bombings.
The terror group stressed in a series of written answers to the Guardian's questions that future attacks would alternate between the "military, political and economic targets". It is the first time the Real IRA has engaged in such open anti-capitalist rhetoric or focused on the role of the banking system.
The leaders also threatened to intensify the group's terror campaign on all fronts.
"Realistically, it is important to acknowledge that we have regrouped and reorganised and emerged from a turbulent period in republican history.
"We have already shown our capacity to launch attacks on the British military, judicial, and policing infrastructure. As we rebuild, we are confident that we will increase the volume and effectiveness of attacks," the organisation said.
One element in the Real IRA's recent activity has been a wave of so-called "punishment" shootings and beatings of those they deem "antisocial elements" in nationalist working class areas. In Derry alone the Real IRA and other aligned groups have shot around two dozen men over the last 18 months.
The Real IRA's leadership was unapologetic over what its critics have described as "rough justice". The group believes such attacks are popular and can garner support in areas where the communities were previously alienated from the police.
"These actions are taken as a last resort to protect the community. We are an integral part of the community and the people in them are our eyes and ears. The fact is that the British police force is rejected by republican communities and people naturally turn to us for help.
"The vast majority of issues are resolved by negotiation, a small percentage require more direct forms of intervention including punishment shootings and expulsions," they said.
On the political front they dismissed Sinn Féin's claims that its electoral strategy would ultimately yield a united Ireland despite the majority of nationalists in Northern Ireland still voting for Sinn Féin and an overwhelming majority backing the peace process.
The Real IRA insisted, however, that support for them was building and they had turned away hundreds of young disaffected nationalists because they didn't have the capacity to absorb so many members.
"From the point of view of republican communities, there is still a heavily armed British police force that casually uses plastic baton rounds, CS gas and Tasers, carry out house raids, stop and search operations and general harassment.
"There's still a 5,000-strong British army garrison, a new MI5 HQ in Belfast, and a British secretary of state. Republican communities are still subjected to sectarian parades and the right to protest is being met with intimidation and violence."
On the subject of recent reports of talks between dissident republicans and the Dublin and London governments the Real IRA said: "There are no talks with either the British government or the Free State Administration.
"The IRA is not unwilling to talk, in fact there needs to be talks … however, talks need to deal with the root cause of the conflict, namely the illegal British occupation of Ireland. We are mindful, though, that the history of such approaches from the British has been characterised by a lack of integrity, a lack of willingness to address the causes of conflict, and has been motivated by a self-serving agenda." Northern Ireland's deputy first minister and Sinn Féin MP, Martin McGuinness, also came in for strong criticism. The former chief-of-staff of the IRA and key Sinn Féin negotiator recently claimed that he had knowledge that dissidents were holding secret discussions with the two governments.
"Martin McGuinness is a British Crown minister who has a vested interest in causing mischief among republicans. His job is to administer the Queen of England's writ in Ireland ... However, if he has any evidence to back up his claims, he should make it public," the Real IRA said.
The solution is so simple I am surprised so little is said about it: End ALL taxpayer financed bailouts for everyone and everything, esp banks. Let the incompetent and criminal fail, there will be pain for a while but people will quickly learn which banks are sound and which are not and the market will keep things humming efficiently. Alas, such a solution is probably never to be. The banking cartel criminals, working hand in hand with their political criminal cronies, have brought about a form of modern serfdom in which the great mass of society works as indentured servants to a ruling class of financial nobility. This situation can be corrected.
Last edited by MichaelC on Sat Nov 20, 2010 9:31 am; edited 1 time in total
Joined: 05 Feb 2007 Posts: 280 Location: The Forest.
Posted: Sat Nov 20, 2010 8:19 am Post subject:
The solution is so simple I am surprised so little is said about it: End ALL taxpayer financed bailouts for everyone and everything, esp banks. Let the incompetent and criminal fail, there will be pain for a while but people will quickly learn which banks are sound and which are not and the market will keep things humming efficiently. Alas, such a solution is probably never to be. The banking cartel criminals, working hand in hand with their political criminal cronies, have brought about a form of modern serfdom in which the great mass of society works as indentured servants to a ruling class of financial nobility.
And we all lived happily ever after. THE END. _________________ I can see through you.
Some people see you.
To me you're just see-thru
As Ireland faces its hour of greatest need and teeters on the brink of bankruptcy, an unlikely saviour has come to the rescue.
The IRA has declared that it is coming out of the shadows and has registered as a limited company. This will involve the payment of tax on all aspects of its current income and business activities, as well as monies owed from 1970 onwards.
Martin McStout, formerly a commander of the Belfast Brigade of the IRA and now a respected expert on education, said "This is the least we can do, given Ireland's precarious financial position. Over the years, we have earned hundred of millions, what with the money from NORAID and Libya, our extortion and protection rackets, gun running, drug dealing, prostitution and the odd successful bank robbery. We also made a mint when we decommissioned most of our weapons and sold them to African banana republics".
Mr McStout went on to say, "We have reached agreement with the tax office and will now pay the corporate tax rate on all of our income.
VAT will also be chargeable on all goods and services, including those we will continue to provide to Ulster and the British mainland.
This is a seismic shift for us, as we have previously denied all of our activities and income.
We once tried to legitimise our tax avoidance by registering as a charity, but the Charity Commission were uncomfortable with our hatred of protestants and the British and our sworn mission to kill every last one of the bastards.
However, IRA Ltd is now ready to become Ireland's biggest corporate player and to contribute accordingly to the wealth of the nation. This might even avoid the necessity for EU and IMF loans".
In a further effort to generate much needed income for Ireland, it is understood that McStout is in negotiations with several Hollywood studios.
Our sources inform us that the IRA is selling the movie rights to Enniskillen, Bloody Sunday, the Mountbattens, Canary Wharf, the Baltic Exchange and the real stories of the Birmingham and Guildford pub bombings.
However, first up will be the Brighton Grand Hotel bombing, with Sir Norman Tebbit being expected to undertake the role of technical advisor.
Hollywood insiders are almost unable to conceal their excitement. One said "Look out Avatar".
The credibility issue engulfing the Government was last week sharply illustrated on the RTE Prime Time programme, when the former Labour leader, Pat Rabbitte, engaged in a sharp exchange with Equality Minister Pat Carey. Mr Rabbitte said to Mr Carey:
“You ought to be ashamed to show your face in this studio after you have brought our country to penury tonight, and the damage that you have done to people’s livelihoods, and start the young people emigrating again. You have destroyed this economy and you engaged in lies over the weekend.
“It’s about time you went because you can do no more damage to this country, and coming on here with your oul palaver about this and that and about structuring, etc. “You ought to be ashamed of where you have brought us tonight.”
Mr Carey said: “No, I’m not ashamed.” Mr Rabbitte replied: “Well you ought to be, that’s the problem with you — when you ought to be ashamed you don’t have any shame.”
Posted: Mon Nov 22, 2010 12:56 pm Post subject: 'We were bought and sold for Europe's Gold'
In yesterday's Sunday Business Post, Tom McGurk nails a few more home truths.
1 The Erosion of Sovereignty since before the first Nice Treaty (2001)
2 Global pyramid-of-debt scheme emanating from Wall Street
3 EU's model of capitalism bankrupting Eastern Europe
4 Bail-out is of German and British banks, not Irish ones
5 Realpolitik of EU membership
He is getting more BFN day by day and so are a lot more Irish people...
We were bought and sold for Europe’s gold
21 November 2010 By Tom McGurk
Things must be really bad when the Irish Times invokes the memory of 1916 and mourns the loss of Irish sovereignty.
This is what it wrote last week: ‘‘It may seem strange to some that the Irish Times would ask whether this is what the men of 1916 died for: a bailout from the German chancellor with a few shillings of sympathy from the British chancellor on the side.
There is the shame of it all. I suppose it’s an improvement on its April 1916 editorial which led the round of applause for the executions.
If, like me, however, you had argued against both the Nice and Lisbon treaties (twice), you can allow yourself a bitter little chuckle; we European subversives knewages ago that sovereignty was long gone.
Instead, the truth of the matter is that we have been existing in a state more akin to a type of European Home Rule, as the ultimate power to make decisions about our finances moved to Brussels a long time ago.
And, as in all colonial relationships, now that the colonised have messed up, the mother power has to sweep back in to sort things out.
Understandably, the proconsuls from the European Central Bank (ECB), the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the European Union (EU) are demanding to see the books before telling us exactly what we have to do.
That said, we should try to understand exactly what happened to us and to comprehend the nature of the economic force we embraced that has stranded us on the beaches of Europe. Does it begin with those suburban warriors, the former Progressive Democrats, the folk who told us that ‘you can’t buck the market’ and ‘we should leave things to the market’? (We did, and look what happened.) It was the Progressive Democrats who introduced us to a form of Darwinian capitalism, as though it were an immutable force of nature.
They were our first capitalist hunter-gathers tempting our most primeval instincts and reassuring us that undisguised self-interest was perfectly natural.
Fianna Fáil didn’t take a lot of convincing, since economic policy was not something in which they had ever majored.
And very soon, aided by the minimal interest rates a unified German economy required, we were on our merry way.
Very soon, the dogma of individualism began eradicating Irish society’s old communal ties and, increasingly buffeted by hurricane-force free-marketism, we began to shrink our society until it became a mere economy. On the way down, citizens became mere consumers as the marketers grew increasingly arrogant in their demands.
Look at what happened in a single generation to Irish obesity levels and look at the profound alcohol crisis that has been inflicted on our society.
Here is an example of capitalism, not just bankrupting us, but killing us off as well.
This contagion, which had its roots in the collapse of the Cold War, began on Wall Street and we became part of a global pyramid of-debt scheme, conveniently forgetting that one day the bill would arrive.
This model of capitalism has now provoked the most serious questions about its workability since the Great Depression.
And, of course, among its most fervent promoters has been the EU which, in just a decade, took it to eastern Europe and bankrupted most of the economies there.
All of this, naturally, took place among strident demands for ‘light-touch regulation’ or, even better, ‘market self-regulation’, as former Anglo Irish boss Sean FitzPatrick might have called it.
Equally, we must also stop blaming the Financial Regulator because, during the Celtic tiger years he also read the zeitgeist.
Is anyone seriously suggesting now that he could have picked up the phone to the banks and said ‘Stop’? In the end, greed and our unique combination of political clientelism and patronage created an unstoppable corruption that no political entity was prepared to confront.
However, to dress up what has led to the IMF takeover of the economy of a sovereign nation is nonsensical.
Given the postmodernist democratic and political structures the EU has reduced us to, this is merely an economic course-correction in a provincial corner of the wider European economy.
In macro terms, this is about no more than dealing with a provincial sub branch which has lost the plot.
The European experiment has, from the outset, been aimed at economic centralisation in an increasingly post-political age and so the men from Brussels were able to glide effortlessly into place last week.
For years, we have been electing MEPs to a parliament that has been meaningless and, in treaty after treaty, we have been acceding to Europe’s diktats to centralise more and more power.
Europe - given a referendum or two - has sought and has largely achieved a post-political age where the requirement of local, visible and direct democratic control has almost disappeared.
The real fact of last week is that the European Central Bank came here to take back direct control of its own money, not ours. And, given that there is €200 billion of British money and €100 billion of German and US money in the Irish banks, can the mutual self-interest at work here be ignored?
The loss of Irish sovereignty is not, and has not been, just pub talk.
We are shortly about to encounter a fascinating moment when Ireland’s political class will be told - and then taught - how to run an economy.
No prisoners will be taken; the pretence of local political hegemony will be abandoned and the realpolitik of EU membership will become clear.
Maybe the only question remaining is who will bail out the IMF after they get entangled with Fianna Fáil.
Wall Street and is putting pressure on Greece, Portugal and Spain I reckon, 'contagion', fear and panic in the bond and insurance markets. Once those interest-only mortgages in Ireland get to the 'honeymoon is over' phase, we're going to see some more enterprising citizens seriously taking a look at the nuts and bolts of the mortgages they were sold (as in the US).
Government about to fall in Ireland, listening to RTE Radio, it still shocks me how myopic the worldview is. Money never sleeps...
The Finnish Finance Minister (a Bilderberger) wants collateral securities ( hard assets like government-owned ports and racecourses).
Interesting times...Time for Whelan and Dealin' to talk to the EU\IMF boys, eh Fintan?
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