July 1, 2013

[Irish spinner and spinning wheel. County Galw...

[Irish spinner and spinning wheel. County Galway, Ireland] (LOC) (Photo credit: The Library of Congress)

Dedicated to Edward Snowden 

It was always the best bet for the precise information that led to our banking and national bankruptcy bailout collapse to come from whistleblowers.

I pinned some hope that some leading players in the collapse would break ranks and release documentation and evidence to the media that would get the information required to fill up the black hole of information we need to get to discover who led the collapse. I still hope figures such as Drumm or Bowe will come clean.

Overall silence, concealment from the Regulator, Central Bank and especially the Department of Finance is the order of the day.

Documents around the time of the guarantee are missing. Accountability must lead any investigation.

Only through a properly investigated Banking Inquiry can our democracy be restored.

Clearly we require new legislation as current legislation renders such an investigation toothless.

Instead of leading the charge to execute a worthless investigation telling us what we already knew that official policy plus poor governance and lack of regulation, according to Regling and Watson (1), we need the who, the why and the how.

Current legislation providing for such an investigation is so absurdly weak as to deny the right of someone out of prejudice to question those brought before such a tribunal. So anyone critical in any way of bankers in the past could in theory be prevented from asking questions.

The real problem is weak leadership that has descended into childish irredeemable nonsense against which erudite and articulate criticism is rendered absurd. We had an example of this last week.

Enda Kenny (3) ““They shine a bright light on the vulgarity of what went on there, which is a direct contradiction to the language of the critical and aesthetic language that what went on around the time of the bailout. This has damaged our reputation.”

Woohoo, mock horror it is.

Its unclear if Kenny’s doublespeak is condemning the release of the tapes or the facts contained in the tapes. It would appear Kenny is less concerned with Ireland’s reputation as a failed state under bailout than Ireland’s reputation in exposing the root cause of its collapse.

The only way to square this is to fully recognise Mr Kenny’s role in the collapse of this state during the years FF engineered Ireland’s financial collapse. Abject compliance and subservience to the financial sector has been the hallmark of Fine Gael both in opposition and in government.

Figures such as John Bruton, Alan Dukes and John Sutherland have cemented even closer ties between Fine Gael and the financial sector than were ever there between FF and the financial/banking sector.

Let’s not also forget the role of the Central Bank. This blog has frequently asked for the resignation of Prof Honahan as governor of the Central Bank. Once again, compliance, weak and unquestioning subservience to the ECB has been the hallmark of negotiations with the troika and the ECB led by Prof Honahan.

Arguably we couldn’t under Honahan give away more of Ireland’s future than Mrs Doyle could give away her sandwiches to visitors in Fr Ted.

Our only saviour in negotiations has been the spectre of Portugal and Greece whose bailouts demanded a better deal for Ireland. No doubt the deal offered to Portugal was hurt as much as the deal offered/negotiated with Portugal helped Ireland.

It’s an embarrassment that continuing dropping GDP in Ireland’s thrust for growth under Ireland’s  policy of austerity supported by Fine Gael and Labour is just another ball of smoke. Our economy under austerity is being propelled under official policy to self harm rather than recovery.

One should not underestimate the weight and importance of the term “reputation” used by Kenny in the above context. It’s clear that the banking inquiries carried out so far have been a damage limitation exercise protecting the individuals responsible for the collapse under the flag much touted by Brian Lenihan of “we were all responsible” meaning no individuals should be asked to shoulder the burden of investigation.

This explains the lack of activity on Kenny’s part to promote the tough new legislation required to compel witnesses under threat of imprisonment/conviction to tell the truth or go to jail.

Clearly Kenny does not want the world to see the cesspit of Irish banking leading an enthralled regulator, Department of Finance and a chorus of political cronies like a parade led by the Pied Piper of Hamlin. This would portray our kindegarden cops, Regulator, political establushment in a glory they seek to avoid.

Our political establishment has shown unwavering and unswerving childishly oedipal longings to serve its own tarnished reputation rather than the ideals of constitutional democracy fought for by founders of this state.

We now have grown men like Kenny and Noonan express childish outrage that the contents of the tapes have been released into the public domain.

“Michael Noonan said the international coverage of the recordings, which are being published by the Irish Independent this week, could damage Ireland’s standing in the opinion of the countries which are funding Ireland’s bailout.

“I’ve no doubt at all it would influence public opinion in the countries that provide us with the funds that are needed for our bailout programme,” Noonan told reporters outside a meeting of EU finance ministers in Brussels.

“We have put a lot of energy into restoring Ireland’s reputation – I hope it’s a passing phase and it doesn’t do permanent damage,” he said.

“But we could have done without it.””

But the schoolboy antics of our own politicians, Martin, Kenny, Noonan and Gilmore chorused by the self serving silence of Burton and Howlin and their supporters, should not blind us in the coming banking inquiry, to the role of the ECB and international banking in Ireland’s collapse.

Angela Merkel would be served better if her own mock horror at the deficits in Irish banking were matched by an investigation into the innumerable banks in Germany and across the EMU where similar practices in banks to those revealed in Ireland were also carried out. See last blog for German banks at IFSC.

Its ironic that many such banks were saved from collapse through ECB support of the bond markets and their criminal practices still go hidden and concealed from public view.

The role of US banks such as Merrill Lynch and Goldman Sachs in Irish banking at the level of funding and auditing should also come under investigation.

Kenny lies at the crossroads between the Pied Piper of Hamlyn leading rats to safety and the toothless fairy bearing gifts to those who take him from the hook preserving Ireland’s reputation.

Grow up, Mr Kenny, Ireland’s reputation in banking is long gone. Taking out the dirty washing can only clean and enhance our reputation.

What part of this do you not get!

A clean, tough, forensic, deep probe banking inquiry, is  needed to restore democracy in Ireland. So far all we got is the financial sector wagging Enda’s tale.

Give us the referendum with the tough legislation required that alone will bring out the truth to restore and set democracy free in Ireland.

The alternative is playtime at the court of Angela Merkel and a Vichy government in Ireland of the people, by the financial sector, of the financial sector.

Perhaps if schoolboy politicians can move on to their future lucrative jobs in the financial sector,  some real politicians can be found to step into their shoes.

Don’t be fooled by our politicians.

There are plenty of Irish people at home and abroad with real capability and integrity though our political landscape at the moment may try to persuade you differEnt.













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