Abandon Ship!

September 17, 2017

The only hot air in Project EU at the moment providing wind in its sails is the ludicrous notion that the inner core of EU member states should gang together to disenfranchise the PIGS to protect the banks of inner core member states such as those of France and Germany.

They are worried that in the event of a future calamity they may not be able to bully peripheral members of a PIGS alliance into submission as happened in the case of Ireland and Greece.

It’s a Goldman Sachs bankers view of the EU not one based on democracy or the democratic entitlements of the people of the EU. A way to sell the idea is to garnish it up under the camouflage of strengthening European democracy however contradictory this notion is.

Consider the following:

https://www.rte.ie/news/2017/0914/904789-irish-meps-influence/

Irish MEP’s are among the least influential of MEP’s in the European parliament mainly because of the number of left-wing and independents in the Irish contingent.

“The annual survey shows that in a scale of one to five, Irish MEPs are in the second least influential cluster of national delegations in the European Parliament.”

Consider also Jean Claude Juncker’s (President of the European Commission), State of the Union  a  wake up call to those who support Ireland remaining in the EU.

Perhaps this will waken up some blindfolded Irish europhiles. But I doubt it as they are too well taken care of financially and otherwise on their junket trips to the halls of Val Halla in Brussels. Supporters of IRexit take note.

Consider http://europa.eu/rapid/press-release_SPEECH-17-3165_en.htm

https://ec.europa.eu/commission/white-paper-future-europe-reflections-and-scenarios-eu27_en

Also:

https://ec.europa.eu/commission/sites/beta-political/files/white_paper_on_the_future_of_europe_en.pdf

“And we can take credit for having brought public deficits down from 6.6% to 1.6%. This is thanks to an intelligent application of the Stability and Growth Pact. We ask for fiscal discipline but are careful not to kill growth. This is in fact working very well across the Union – despite the criticism.”

With zero interest rates growth has been dismal the only difference being tools to generate growth are disappearing fast while a landslide collapse of stock markets fueled by the drying up of Quantitative Easing yield a future of a European deflationary spiral rather than growth.

But even this growth is illusory a good example being that of Ireland where inflated property properties help the financial sector to pretend the real economy is growing rather than the true picture of paper driven financialisation driving the economy down.

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/aug/26/japans-deflationary-spiral-worsens-as-abenomics-falters

Working well? According to Juncker this the Financial and Growth Pact lock on our fiscal space means we cannot tackle our housing crisis by investing the billions it requires to build homes to end homelessness and end the racketeering speculation that is driving the middle class out of property ownership into the hand of rental speculators.

Juncker’s vision for Europe contains some disturbing contradictions.

One is reminded of some quotes from George Orwell:

“All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others.”
― George OrwellAnimal Farm

“No one believes more firmly than Comrade Napoleon that all animals are equal. He would be only too happy to let you make your decisions for yourselves. But sometimes you might make the wrong decisions, comrades, and then where should we be?”
― George OrwellAnimal Farm

Juncker writes:

“…..Now is the time to build a more united, stronger and more democratic Europe for 2025.

“We are now protecting Europe’s external borders more effectively. Over 1,700 officers from the new European Border and Coast Guard are now helping Member States’ 100,000 national border guards patrol in places like Greece, Italy, Bulgaria and Spain. We have common borders but Member States that by geography are the first in line cannot be left alone to protect them. Common borders and common protection must go hand in hand.”

In regard to Brexit the border between NI and the south would appear to be ripe for the injection of a large number of officers from the new European Border and Coast Guard.

Perhaps under pressure from the expense of this undertaking Juncker during Brexit negotiations is hoping the Irish contingent to approach him to fund and supply this border police force.

Such an eventuality of course contradicts the illusory “more democratic Europe for 2025”

I can’t find any proposals for more democracy if you take away the call for more debate on these matters. Its talk without action.

“The future of Europe cannot be decided by decree. It has to be the result of democratic debate and, ultimately, broad consensus.”

Consider the following on the proposed operation and expansion of the European Border and Coast Guard.

Perhaps our depleting security presence of An Garda and defence forces should take note as apparently help is on hand with the imminent arrival European Border and Coast Guard. We will have no need of a state militia to build up our border patrols under Brexit.

“…for the first time since walls
were torn down a generation ago, the recent crises
have led to temporary controls being reintroduced
at certain borders within Europe.

…….Management of
external borders is the primary responsibility of
individual countries, but cooperation is reinforced
thanks to the operational support of the European
Border and Coast Guard. Continuous improvement
to border management is needed to keep up with new
challenges. If this is not done, some countries may
wish to maintain targeted internal controls…”

Clearly Juncker is advocating a stronger and less democratic system of policing and border control one that will replace “targeted internal controls”.

Critics of the EU have long pointed at the insider/outsider distinction between those on the periphery and those countries wielding the most power. Summed up in the PIGS acronym referring to the economies of the Southern European countries of Portugal, Italy, Greece, and Spain and Ireland.

Juncker proposes to solidify this by removing veto rights from periphery members with:

“A group of Member States decides to cooperate much
closer on defence matters, making use of the existing
legal possibilities. This includes a strong common
research and industrial base, joint procurement, more
integrated capabilities and enhanced military readiness
for joint missions abroad.”

Conversely those hoping for a more democratic Europe with greater financial involvement in solutions to national health and housing crises perhaps having an equivalent to CAP(Common Agricultural Policy) with a CHP(Common Health Policy) will be disappointed.

“……..Conversely, the EU27 stops acting or does less in
domains where it is perceived as having more limited
added value, or as being unable to deliver on promises.
This includes areas such as regional development,
public health, or parts of employment and social
policy not directly related to the functioning of the
single market.”

This document was written by bankers for bankers perhaps by Goldman Sachs. Its main interest is security to defend its own interests.

It wants the EU to starve public finances under the ruse of a so-called Fiscal and Growth pact to take power away from democratically elected politicians, remove their powers to control national finances and their obligation to respond to the needs of people for health, education and roofs over their heads. This is written for bankers by bankers.

Its not of the people, for the people, by the people. Think of a small eurogroup in the EU commission handing down what its been told to do by bankers led by Mario Draghi, the ECB and Goldmann Sachs. Think of Mario Barroso former EU commissioner with his contacts taking up the mobile phone on behalf of Goldmann and calling up Juncker!

Reading this document the most Ireland is going to get out of the EU to solve its housing and A&E crisis is the use of the EU’s bathroom here, by way of comic relief:

Jean Claude Juncker has also suggested that EU member countries should give up their right to veto new tax laws.

https://www.theguardian.com/business/2017/jan/01/jean-claude-juncker-blocked-eu-curbs-on-tax-avoidance-cables-show

“The president of the European commission, Jean-Claude Juncker, spent years in his previous role as Luxembourg’s prime minister secretly blocking EU efforts to tackle tax avoidance by multinational corporations, leaked documents reveal.”

Juncker is behind EU proposals for CCCTB Common Consolidated Corporation Tax Base that will involve a large loss in revenue to the government. There is a proposal to tax technology companies and support for a Euro Finance Minister note below (won’t be funding a Common European Health Policy building a health infrastructure for member states).

It’s interesting that Europe’s share of global GDP is in sharp decline. Note EU27 includes UK 4% below so instead of 22% EU26 following Brexit will drop to 18%.

Brexit will provide opportunity for the UK to compete against the EU26 for a bigger global share of trade with the remaining 72% of global GDP.

Its trade will continue with the EU with the EU exposed more to the loss of a surplus trade balance with UK. To explore some of the full facts around this issue see here:

https://fullfact.org/europe/uk-eu-trade/

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

There is talk of a group of countries working together and agree on a common “Business Law Code” unifying corporate, commercial and related domains of law, helping businesses of all sizes to easily operate across borders. Think of them and us and a lurch to the centre.

There is nothing good in any of this for peripheral countries. Everywhere you look the veto and democratic involvement of peripheral countries is being under current proposals curtailed and reduced. This represents continuing erosion of democracy in Europe.

Embarrassed by growing centralisation with its drift towards totalitarian domination of the periphery europhiles are on the ropes defending the EU with ‘this will not get support’. Yet these proposals are in black and white given as where the EU is aiming to get to.

Banking union is not where EU missiles are aimed. This would put the inner core responsible for bills worked up by the ‘profligate’ periphery. Thinking banking union is on the cards for the EU is simply pie in the sky and nowhere is this mentioned in Juncker’s state of the union speech.

A eurowide insurance system to pay out when economic disaster befalls a member state is far from what inner core members of the EU want. There will not be a FED to bail out the EU’s Nevada.

In the following clip Jean Claude Juncker speaking of the EU, the future, peace. The irony is the flawed design of the euro is contrary to economic growth and political stability.

Note the answer to the question re Barroso and Goldman Sachs asked by the second young interviewer here (following 2016 State of Union speech). There is a need for a 10yr moratorium on members of parliament working for the banking industry.

Perhaps a banking union with transparency and accountability templates can be presented to the EU parliament at some point for discussion, but under present leadership dominated by France and Germany, this is unlikely.

More likely is the spider analogy with the periphery cocooned and prepared by the inner core ready for future consumption.

https://www.ft.com/content/9ca163e3-512f-37e7-866d-9e0774dd

Ireland’s future lies outside the model for EU conceived by Juncker. On Defence, on CCCTB, on diminishing democracy, due to proposals to prevent veto especially on tax matters. On centralisation drift vis a vis European Finance minister there is likely to be more consolidation into authoritarian and cohesive centralisation.

Consider Ireland’s danger to its sovereignty and diminishing status as a sovereign republic. The notion of 32 county unified republic in this EU is an affront to the principles of democracy.

Consider the disastrous trade loss by Ireland’s agri industry on top of the lack of competitiveness for Ireland’s exporters due to a lower sterling.

Our relationship with EU becomes increasingly similar to the relationship between a bank and a property owner with an overhanging default risk.

They want  the money and no way will they allow us any role in running the bank.

Our future lies outside the EU in a new relationship with NI and the UK hopefully with a 32 county NI and republic of Ireland that will future proof economic and social progress not harm progress already made in NI and Southern Ireland.

You need a new vision for that.

Politically on bailout our relationship with EU has been one of hapless indifference and incompetence as we wallow and swallow euro dreams that have long since turned sour.

Time to find a way out before things become a lot worse….but perhaps things have to get a lot worse before this message gets across.

 

…till again

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Listening to the Paul Murphy and Jobstown media coverage I anticipated the media would investigate the claims made for an independent investigation into policing. Those acquitted would no doubt have serious issues with having been dragged through a lengthy trial following dawn raids on foot of evidence Judge and jury found seriously wanting.

Problems with policing could lead to allegations of political policing and descent into what in other jurisdictions with less a tradition of democracy would consider extreme fascism with lack of respect for democratic rights?

Something of the kind that is happening in Poland at the moment?

Instead I read an article penned by Philip Ryan that ignored the acquittal and the serious issues it raises and instead mounted a personal soapbox attack on Paul Murphy alleging harassment of “two defenceless women”. Video evidence I saw showed instead Gardai up to three deep protecting icons of our state well used to protest and political debate. They were safe and more Garda could have been called in if required.

Such investigative journalism using newsprint as a polemic for prejudice is not what intelligent investigative reporting is about. Polemical propaganda so vitriolic against Paul Murphy brought journalism down to the level of nasty state propaganda.

Turning the pages of the Sunday Independent 16 July I came upon p28. “Acolytes of Jobstown cult doth protest too much…” an article by Eilis O Hanlon. It’s a sad article that descends into sad and verbose if not bitter invective against Paul Murphy. It’s also sad in that you would expect better from a published novelist. Perhaps she has allowed imagination to win out over journalistic fact gathering and factual truth.

“He even used Dáil privilege to state that “numerous Gardai lied under oath” and had an “agreement to commit perjury”.

The trouble with this quote from O Hanlon is that her article is not investigating the evidence of whether this is true or not, it’s a part of the record of the court; but rather she ignores the implications of this for democracy itself and scorns the claims about which there is at least prima facie evidence worthy of investigation.

Its more evidence of her emotion overcoming reason when she expands her attack on Paul Murphy to attack the Left in denigrated fashion equating so-called leftist reasoning as silly with the implication her grasp of issues is nuanced and informed. Nothing could be further from the truth.

She quotes the Taoiseach “You had a fair trial and you were acquitted, but that doesn’t mean your behaviour was right.” She doesn’t go on to say what an Taoiseach also said, ““And it may well be the case that you weren’t engaged in kidnapping but it was thuggery and your behaviour was wrong. The protest was ugly. It was violent. It was nasty.”

Such nasty innuendo was not worthy of a Taoiseach of Ireland let alone a fair minded leader in any other state.

In using the word thuggery Varadkar was suggesting Murphy himself was engaged in thuggery something which he has never been accused of. This was a disgraceful assault on a member of the Dáil and an assault on his integrity and his right to good name and reputation.

These charges should never have been brought against the Jobstown 6.

Varadkar’s comments give evidence to the view that political policing happens in Ireland with the DPP it would appear friendly to the views of FG/LB.

There is clear evidence in the media of a right-wing extremely biased propaganda that knows no bounds when it comes to twisting the truth or in its efforts to bury the truth when it makes a fragile effort to emerge into the light of day.

For them the Benjamin Franklin quote to which democracy including this blog owes its roots “We are all born ignorant, but one must work hard to remain stupid” can be tweaked at this point to “We are all born ignorant, but one must work hard to keep everyone stupid”.

And boy is the anti left propaganda flowing hard at the moment. On radio allegations flow, “but the left won’t say where the money is to come from to pay for Irish water”. Lie. The left have clearly stated the rich need to pay their fair share.

What irks is the condescending tone suggesting the left have simplistically got everything wrong, that the world can be reduced to a soundbite. This is an intellectual conceit often appearing in shallow invective against any critique of the EU.

It doesn’t matter that Ireland was torpedoed by the ECB and the IMF and the issue of sharing Ireland’s bailout on member states was ridiculed and we were cast overboard.

This is not the kind of democracy the EU is made up of. The EU to a large extent engages in a form of pretend democracy.

Consider the following:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trialogue

“A trialogue or formal trialogue meeting is a type of meeting used in the European Union (EU) legislative process. Trialogue negotiations are provided for in EU treaties. They are used if the Council of the European Union does not agree to the amendments proposed by the European Parliament at the second reading. In this case, formal trialogue negotiations are carried out within the framework of a conciliation committee. A trialogue is understood as an equally composite tripartite meeting between those involved in the legislative process of the EU institutions. These bodies are the European Commission (EC), the Council of the European Union and the European Parliament. The European Commission takes on the mediating function.

Critics argue that the use of trialogues is detrimental to transparency in the legislative process. They believe the EC uses this process to bypass public transparency and the supposed opposition the proposed legislation would cause.[1]”

Now I’m not here going to disect the minutiae of how legislation is prepared and how the EU is governed in a pyramid fashion. At the end of the day democracy in the EU is as much as a scam as Bernie Madoff who was indited on 11 charges in March 2009 for operating the largest private Ponzi scheme in history. Bernie’s company won huge, prestigious awards for his business.

He employed the best mathematical brains in the country but the simple Ponzi scam behind his business was hidden from you.

At the EU level we have similar intellectual conceits that assure the suspension of disbelief minority who require answers that indeed there is democracy at EU level. Somehow, somewhere, hidden in the EU committee system, we are assured, democracy is at work. It’s just that our MEP’s don’t fully understand themselves how the Kafkaesque EU works and because of its complex and hidden committee system and its lack of transparency, it cannot be explained.

Be assured the EU in the development of complex legislation has many trap doors to trap the unwary.

https://www.economist.com/news/briefing/21602200-european-elections-will-neither-lend-new-credibility-european-parliament-nor-give

” The German government has usually been an eager supporter (of the European Parliament), not least because Germany has the most MEPs and they generally run the place. Yet even in Berlin the parliament is now widely derided. This habit has grown as Germany’s power in the EU has increased. The German Bundestag has made clear that it sees itself as a more legitimate body than the Strasbourg parliament. And the German constitutional court has ruled that it does not consider the European Parliament to be a credible source of democratic legitimacy for the EU, or even a proper parliament at all.

…….The provisions of the “economic semester”, an attempt to strengthen and co-ordinate economic policy at the EU level, as well as the fiscal compact and their associated regulations have also given Brussels a more intrusive role. National governments can now be censured and fined by the commission for missing fiscal targets; they have to submit draft budgets to Brussels even before laying them before their own legislatures. There is also talk in Berlin and Brussels of binding contracts forcing governments to make reforms at home.

…The experience of the euro crisis has thrown fresh light on one root cause of the European project’s democratic failings: that it gives too small a role to national parliaments, still the bedrock of Europe’s democracy. Parliaments exert influence through the Council of Ministers, because they determine the make-up of national governments. They also scrutinise how ministers in those governments vote in Brussels, a thing that some parliaments do more effectively than others. Many parliaments could learn from Denmark’s Folketing and other Scandinavians how best to examine EU legislation.

..Before 1979 national parliaments also had direct involvement through the nomination of MPs to serve in the parliamentary assembly in Strasbourg. But they lost this with direct elections. It was only in the Lisbon treaty that national parliaments were again given a specific role. A co-ordinating body of European scrutiny committees called COSAC was recognised and given an office in Brussels. The treaty also introduced a system of yellow and orange cards, under which national parliaments can object to EU legislative proposals on the ground that they infringe the principle of “subsidiarity”, which holds that action should be taken at European level only if it cannot be better done at national level.”

The trouble with the EU is that few know how it works, that it is not democratically accountable, that national parliaments have little say in its operation. But I’m only scratching the surface here.

The trouble with the EU is that it is dangerously out of control and that most member states have little realisation or knowledge of its direction.

Increasing numbers ponder upon its democratic deficits. We see in Ireland’s failure to succeed in the EU leading to Ireland’s economic collapse in 2010-12, failure of the EU to provide security against such catastrophic failure. This was our reason for joining so such an economic collapse could not happen safeguarded by the EU! We were wrong.

We have no democratic input into objecting to austerity measures leading to homelessness and hospital waiting lists; our politicians so stripped of power by our membership of the EU that they cannot respond to such crises in any meaningful way.

The EU no longer works as a democratic institution, instead it operates much like a globalized Berni Madoff hedge fund. Lots continue to make money and careers and a future out of something seen by the general public as remote, hostile, indifferent, unaccountable, undemocratic and well past its sell-by date.

On the surface there is collegiality and confraternity in semi transparent committees but each has a back door which allows secrecy and confidentiality where power is imposed by unseen and shadowy forces who operate the levers of power. They cannot be made accountable and we cannot rid ourselves of a growing Orwellian intrusion into our lives that makes a mockery of the Irish parliament.

On the one hand we have debate on homelessness and hospital waiting lists in Dáil Éireann; on the other hand, we have the secretive Economic Management Committee forwarding our budget proposals for scrutiny to shadows in Europe whose sole concern is that German and French Banks get back their bailout with interest!

http://www.ihca.ie/news/hospital_waiting_lists_are_out_of_control_according_to_the_ihca.446.2209.html

Yes it is a growing concern the Jobstown incident has been used by Gardai and the leader of the Irish State to mount what appears to be a fascist and extreme right wing abuse of power used against those wishing to make a democratic stand against shadowy powers in Europe forcing privatisation of Irish water.

Luckily our court system resisted such efforts to bring false charges against the accused who were acquitted. As in Poland the lesson is we should be vigilant against further efforts to politicise the appointment of judges and legal profession using the court system to punish an increasingly fragile democratic movement in our state.

 

 

 

Till again

 

End

Part 1

In her speech in support of Leo Varadkar in the Fine Gael leadership contest Frances Fitzgerald attacked so-called Fantasists on the left  derogating and deriding them with the terms Populist and Leftist.

What do these terms mean?

If you visit Ireland’s border regions with NI you’ll see any attempt to return to border posts of yore will be rejected by locals and the public at large in both communities.

The border through tariffs and delays will cost billions in lost revenue while the cost of servicing it through customs personnel and infrastructure has not yet even been estimated. Much less is known if the EU will contribute to its financing?

Government proposes a United Ireland solution in the hope the EU negotiations over Brexit will persuade the people of NI to join the south and remain in the EU.

Ireland would shift its EU border to Irish ports and borders in the UK. Such arrogant hubris is a contender for the most daft of fantasies.

Yet Fianna Fail, Sinn Fein and Fine Gael support this absurd notion that is both self-defeating and self contradicting. Erosion of democracy in Ireland has been compounded by the decreasing autonomy for Ireland under the Treaty Lisbon. This is a fantasy to peddle the notion of a 32 county sovereign and independent Ireland in the EU.

Clearly Sinn Fein and Fianna Fail and Fine Gael have some way to go in persuading the people of NI that whatever sovereignty they have as members of the UK, they should give it all up in favour of adopting the Sheriffs of Brussels to be their political masters. People of NI would have more independence in a jail.

http://www.irishtimes.com/opinion/what-are-the-legal-and-constitutional-implications-of-the-lisbon-treaty-1.737778

“.. After Lisbon our duties as citizens of the new Union would have prior claim over our duty of obedience and loyalty to the Irish Constitution and laws in any case of conflict between the two. This is because of the primacy of the constitution of the newly constituted EU over the Irish Constitution as laid down in the Amendment.

These are far from being minor “technical” changes.””

The very notion of a sovereign, ‘United Ireland’ under the flag of the EU is a contradiction.

Furthermore if Macron gets his way there will be federalism of the EU as it morphs into what Orwell foresaw as the coming dictatorship state amalgam of Franz Kafka’s ‘The Castle’ and the politburo bureaucracy of the USSR of recent renown.

Independence envisaged by United Ireland will be treated as bad, further absorption into the EU with its failed euro system, considered good.

If we are sincere about a United Ireland let’s lobby the UK and EU to help us bring it about the best United Ireland we can have.

This will mean UK and EU supporting a sovereign United Ireland OUTSIDE the EU.

In considering this argument perhaps the EU should remember the judgment of Solomon:

“”Give the baby to her, just don’t kill him!” The king declared the second woman the true mother, as a mother would even give up her baby if that was necessary to save its life.”

Giving up EU claim on Ireland in the wisdom of the disastrous impact of Brexit on these shores, supporting a new United Ireland outside the UK and EU, or amalgamated into the UK with greater powers of autonomy and self-government, would solve a great problem for people living together on these islands.

The Fantasy of United Ireland in the EU is demonstrated and perpetuated and propaganda built around it with no wish to hold a border poll to elicit support for this.

Perhaps remembering rejection by so many of Lisbon and Nice Treaties there is more appetite to be wary of democracy in favour of disenfranchising voters. This is evidence of further erosion of democracy in the EU.

Likewise there is not one word breathed regarding putting before the people a vote for Ireland to leave the EU and in a negotiated new Ireland join the UK in a new commonwealth arrangement mentioned above. This subject is considered taboo if it has been even thought about by political leadership.

Part 11

Regarding referenda to engage the people in choices about what could be a millstone around everyone’s neck, we were promised ‘New Politics’ based on consensus building following the last election.

However this has led to almost no work being carried out by the Dail in its last session.

Large decisions are sent into committees composed of members from different ideological and party affiliation where consensus doesn’t occur.

The Dail has become dysfunctional as a result with little or no legislation being brought forward. New Politics has become another fantasy with calls if this is the New Politics, please bring back the old politics.

We have instead a form of political theatre promising everything and achieving nothing.

In the background are the shades of the banking and financial industry calling the shots through its political mouthpiece held in tight rein by Ireland’s Economic Management Committee.

In the fifties in Ireland under an economically impoverished and challenged government vast housing estates were built around Ireland’s major cities to house a large movement​ of people from rural areas to cities.

Even the unemployed beginning new families were housed some in large corporation housing estates a form of social housing popular at the time.

Today if you propose public investment in similar residential housing structure  you will be labelled a Leftist and a Fantasist.

Want more fantasy?

An expensive recruitment campaign seeking to attract doctors, nurses and other health personnel back to work in the Irish health service has been a massive failure with only a handful responding over the past 2 years.

More?

Tens of thousands of jobs in the construction sector are planned over the coming years but the construction work force has been victim to collapse leading to emigration and now we have massive skills shortages.

Unable to provide affordable housing for People living here we are being fed the fairy tale construction workers enjoying better benefits abroad including housing will return to fall victim to our housing mess.

Today there are reports of whole families sleeping rough in public parks legislation to protect families from homeless favours single people while their plight is ignored.

More?

How about Ireland’s CSO(Central Statistics Office) calling a 25% approx increase in our budgetary surplus this referred to as cowboy economics from abroad.

Corporate tax receipts under pressure from the EU include the fantasy of Ireland’s governing party mounting a challenge in the European Court against Apple owing Ireland €13 bn…beggars belief.

The powers that be enjoy the belief they can make any of their fantastic fantasies reality.

With the aid of an obedient and compliant media with the discernment of  living  bacteria yet to be discovered on Mars, they make even common sense an object of Populist derision.

A highly secretive group such as Ireland’s economic management committee composed of a small number of representatives of the ruling party’s leadership ruled by the Troika and the European Commission have already scuppered investment in Ireland’s infrastructure including and especially that of social and residential housing.

Noonan refuses to stand up to the EU’s imposed rules on Fiscal Space!

Not much objective reasoning is given to examine or explain this in the media.

But you are a fantasist if you think present day government will build the property infrastructure required by the people.

Fiscal space as determined by the above entities is there to suffocate and tether Ireland’s ability as a sovereign nation to determine its own fate.

But it also maintains the status quo, its wastefulness, lack of investment and prudent management of the economy and current inequalities in our society between rich and poor.

It maintains the legions of bureaucrats and ineffectual politicians in the salary and comfort zone they have come to enjoy. There’s also the promise on retirement of further posts in Europe without possibility of the embarrassment of electoral failure.

Politicians have become mere choirboys of the EU pampered by high paying jobs​ with powers stolen from them by the EU.

We are instead governed by EU officials posing as politicians part of a pan European elite bureaucracy that serves the demands of the rich and seeks to extract as much austerity as possible upon the poor.

In simple terms this means the European Union and its Central Bank and European officials who authorise our national budget refuse permission for us to invest our pension funds, our NTMA borrowings, our proceeds from the sale of portion of AIB into construction projects similar to the above.

They’d rather we invest in reducing the debt burden inflicted on us to pay off debt ‘we owe’ to them for saving the bondholder banks of France and Germany! This debt was passed onto our shoulders by incompetent politicians with its chorus led by the EU.

Part 111

Let’s consider the word Populism. This term is especially corrosive in the way it undermines democracy itself and the will of the people.

It takes its meaning from the notion that there are underlying complexities and realities ordinary people are not capable of grasping. Instead Legions of committees at Commission level will determine for example what privately run Water Company we require to tax our water so government taxes won’t have to pay for it.

In the wings are legions of investors pressuring the EU to privatise public utilities to allow them invest their ill-gotten gains much of it money printed out of thin air and handed to them on a plate.

The casino of the financial paper private sector cannot wait for governments to divest their infrastructure to them to exact rich penalties on those who fall into the trap.

At the very highest level in the EU austerity driven policies prevent investment in transport, health and education and social services. Bailouts finance the funneling upward of rent and investment returns tax-free to the rich.

Part IV

Since 2008 investment returns on bonds, stocks and shares and property have quadrupled on foot of money printed out of thin air subsequently invested in financial paper and property by vulture funds and banks.

Today the value of stocks and shares is twice that of 2008 though economic activity fuelled by austerity and financial collapse is halved globally and heading downward.

Brexit hasn’t happened yet.

This is a paper driven financial dream fantasy fuelled by bespoke politicians charged with perpetuating this fantasy.

In order to perpetuate this fantasy pick pocketing the people and rewarding the unregulated rich growing wealthier by the day, political influence is essential

Regulating Fiscal Space and disempowering politicians is the business of the EU. Much as the Soviet USSR was governed and controlled by blindly devoted politicians Lucinda Creighton style politicians in love with the euro are used by Brussels to fan the flames of opposition to critical analysis.

The role of such politicians is to defend this financial elite within the EU, build confidence in its continuation and perpetuation and attack those who show up it’s absurd nature.

Unlike the declaration of independence of the united states and the Irish constitution all men are not created equal. Rather we are persuaded to believe there is a superior group of people who know better much as King Hammurabi described in his 1776 BC Code of Hammurabi ruling the Babylonian Empire.

These are the unelected officials of the vast EU bureaucracy that include political minions such as Frances Fitzgerald, Leo Varadkar and Simon Coveney.

We must assume given the disgraceful collapse of the case against Sean Fitzpatrick who led Anglo Irish Bank that the ODCE department of corporate enforcement, the Gardai and DPP that this SUPERIOR group of people is above the law protected at highest levels from regulation or legal control.

In housing, health and justice the reforms required to bring about a change in the political landscape might detune compliance and obedience to the status quo and the powers that be.

They might bring about political change and might even threaten Fiscal Space.

So nothing is done except the ludicrous and nefarious. Government tries to mirror the vast committee system of the EU.

Ludicrous policies built on fantasy of Public Private Partnerships are proposed in the construction of housing and residential property.

This is against the scenario that private developers know that most people cannot afford the absurd level of rent and property cost currently bubbling.

Part V

Little if any reform is possible. In our Justice Department, Frances Fitzgerald against the backdrop of political corruption meaning every position from inspector upwards is a political appointees; possibly criminal fraud in Templemore accountancy and fiscal rules; oppression and victimisation of whistleblowers; reports left gathering dust for over 2 years kicked into further inaction as they are laundered into further reports sent another 2 years into the future; no naming and shaming, no prosecutions for incompetence and worse,  cleaning up the police force of An Garda is the demand of populism?

The Troika, a tripartite committee formed by the European Commission, the European Central Bank and the International Monetary Fund (EC, ECB and IMF) still control Ireland’s finances for which spending approval is regularly sought.

In a recent poll, https://www.rte.ie/news/ireland/2017/0521/876875-poll-brexit-europe/, 82% of Irish repondents felt Irish politicians need to be tougher in their stance on Brexit.

One would be forgiven to mistake Michel Barnier visiting Ireland, invited to address Dail Eireann, an unelected politician, Europe’s lead negotiator on Brexit, to mistake him for a visiting head of state.

But this unelected politician has far more power than your average unelected head of state.

Likewise observing the current leadership race between Varadkar and Coveney evidenced in their abysmal failures in Health and Housing to solve the current crises in both, we can be comforted that the role of Irish Head of State in the EU could be carried out by any primary school schoolboy who knows how to do what he is told. Or can we?

Triumph was expressed in political circles persuading the EU that interests of Ireland would be attended to in the articles setting about the negotiation of the EU position on Brexit.

The European Peoples Party http://www.thejournal.ie/readme/fine-gael-fidesz-2204730-Jul2015/ make dubious bedfellows for Fine Gael.

Was it not a coincidence that a meeting of anti Brexiteers was held in Wicklow this May 17 http://www.seankelly.eu/news-and-events/496-kelly-hosts-epp-brexit-meeting-in-wicklow-

Strangely we had no visitors when we attempted to get support to burn bondholders.

Say NO to corrupt fantasy.

 

 

Till again….

 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Code_of_Hammurabi

https://www.rte.ie/news/2017/0511/874203-brexit/

http://www.thejournal.ie/shadow-banking-ireland-3-3375469-May2017/?utm_source=shortlink

 

Black Swan

October 21, 2016

 

black-swanCoveneys support of first time buyers springs more out of a concern with the needs of developers.

Notwithstanding supply shortages some developers are unable to sell properties at the current high unaffordable prices.

Coveney mistakenly confuses the inability to raise a deposit with inability to afford to pay back a mortgage.

Alarmed at the possibility of more people on foot of Coveney’s proposals taking on mortgages they simply cannot afford to pay back, the Central Bank has forced a government climb-down restricting the amount that can be borrowed  to 70% instead of 80%.

(1)“The Central Bank has said that they think the threshold whereby the loan-to-value of the property should come down from 80 per cent to 70 per cent, which would ensure that nobody is overborrowing to try to avail of the grant and I think [Minister for Finance] Michael Noonan thinks that’s a sensible alteration.

“It essentially means that more people will be able to avail of it. It’s relatively minor change but it’s a change I think that’s worth doing and so he’s happy to accommodate that.”

Actually, Simon, this is not a relatively minor change, instead this makes your proposals ludicrous. It makes any savings possible under your scheme will be eaten up by the higher cost of raising the difference between what the bank will lend and what ever savings the borrower has to make up that difference.

If there is a strong uptake, house prices will rise absorbing even further any gains  made to help the buyer. Ironically, the proposal has about as much value in increasing house supply and new house construction, as a ball of smoke.

It’s another case of Nero fiddling while Rome burns. Fiddle while Rome burns definition. “To do something trivial and irresponsible in the midst of an emergency; legend has it that while a fire destroyed the city of Rome, the emperor Nero played his violin, thus revealing his total lack of concern for his people and his empire.”

What Coveney should be doing is demanding from Europe a derogation from its fiscal space rules to raise capital on the open market or to invest from our pension fund in a large-scale construction project to build Olympic Village type apartment blocks in the larger cities to deal with this growing crisis. That and a whole range of building projects to build “affordable” housing for the whole generation of young Irish people shut out of the housing market.

Not to be outdone Richard Bruton is advertising for parents to be paid to undertake supervisory duties to help break the teacher’s strike. The irony is teachers were not being paid to do those duties since they were forced to do same under Croke Park hours. Inflammatory and incendiary as this move is pouring petrol on Rome burning, a greater irony is that teachers are striking not for better pay and conditions for themselves, but on behalf of the ruthless and unfair way new entrants to their profession have been penalised forced to accept rates of pay on a par way below that of their peers. Another example of how young people are being shafted by future leadership contenders within Fine Gael.

I’ve no doubt whatsoever targeting of teachers is a fallout from European austerity hawks from the troika down to impose gauging cuts on our public service bill to reduce the standards of health care and public education to that of public health and education expenditure in the US where it is lowest in the world.

This despite abundant riches being further amassed by the 1%.

(2) Meanwhile Europe is targeting Ireland’s corporate tax regime in its current proposals:

At present companies, or groups of companies, must deal with potentially 28 different corporate tax regimes across Europe.

The Commission will recommend that, instead, member states would sign up to a Common Corporate Tax Base (CCTB).

That would create a harmonised tax base so that a company which operates in several member states would know that in each member state its profits would be taxable the same way, and that exemptions, deductions and losses would be also be treated the same way for tax purposes.

Once a Common Corporate Tax Base was established, the next phase would be to create a system whereby tax liabilities would be “consolidated”.

That would effectively operate on a formula that would apportion how much tax is due to which member state.

Under the proposal, a group of companies would be allowed to add its profits and losses from all subsidiaries together to reach a net figure.

Tax would then be paid on the group’s net profit for the whole of the EU.

This will effectively bring to an end Ireland’s tax haven incentives such as Double Irish.

(3)…European heavy-hitters have been warned not to come after Ireland’s low corporation tax or we will leave the EU, too.

Our regime is expected to come under renewed scrutiny in the wake of Britain’s exit as they were our strongest ally in fending off demands for tax harmonisation.

…But Fine Gael MEP Brian Hayes told the Irish Independent: “That is the absolute red line issue. Any attempt made to cajole us [on corporation tax], as far as I’m concerned, we’re out the door.

Ireland’s tax haven status and leprechaun economics regime will soon end.

(4)Times they are a changing: It’s not only on this blog you will find growing support for Ireland exiting the growing shambles of the EU. Gay Byrne is now in favour of Ireland’s exit. Let’s ignore his implied call for a rerun of the Brexit vote.

To follow on from last blog, some links on the growing mess of Deutsche bank commentary by Bill Holter:

a) Deutsche Bank Walking Dead (under capitalised) https://goldsilver.com/blog/deutsche-bank-walking-dead-bill-holter/

According to Bill Holter Deutsche bank is the most systemically dangerous bank in the world, the biggest link in the derivative chain. It cannot return from the dead. 50-77$ trillion derivative exposure, walking dead institution, once you start talking about them being solvent, game is over. Zero volatility in credit and stock markets they are in lockdown.

Deutsche Bank stock market capitalisation something like 12-15bn dollars, they are under capitalised just to get to Basil 111 requirements, then there is a 14.4bn  fine against them, they have no money to cover this.

Any type of margin call will take them down…if they break the whole market goes, Italian,Spanish, Austrian banks Irish banks Portuguese banks waiting in line, amount of capital they have against the amount of derivatives they carry and are counter party for….what took years and years to grow the derivative market they will destroy markets…

Deutsche Bank is a Black Swan being pumped with air from QE that cannot go on forever. There is a limit on what can be pumped from the 99% to further inflate the assets of the 1%.

Looking forward the EU brought about a lot of good to Europe. The challenge will be to retrieve in any future cross border free trade agreements. cultural, social and educational relationships, that the bonds that have proven of real value, be retained and nourished to grow and prosper.

An inner core that has fed on the periphery to the extent that Greece, Ireland, Portugal, Spain have been forced into economic collapse by a plan promising stability, security and prosperity for all, will not hold forever.

Meanwhile Europe needs to rid itself of the legacy of a poorly constructed plan built only to serve the needs of the 1%.

 

 

till again

(1) http://www.irishtimes.com/business/budget-2017/coveney-defends-70-mortgage-threshold-for-help-to-buy-scheme-1.2836721

(2)https://www.rte.ie/news/business/2016/1019/825341-eu-commission-to-launch-controversial-tax-proposal/

(3)http://www.independent.ie/business/brexit/eu-has-our-corporation-tax-in-its-sights-after-uk-quits-34835831.html

(4) http://www.independent.ie/business/brexit/we-should-leave-eu-on-same-day-as-british-gay-byrne-backs-irish-eu-exit-if-brexit-happens-35139500.html

 

The housing report finally came out. Its added to my disillusionment with politics in Ireland that appears to be in a state of paralysis in dealing with economic and social problems.

There are 2 problems that more than any other describe the housing shortage supply in Ireland. One is lack of supply which feeds into the other problem: the other is the prohibitive cost of new homes that prevents young people having any hope of getting onto the housing ladder.

The report only refers to the vague suggestion of ‘speaking with agencies’ eg NTMA above. This means the report is holed below the water line. It does not provide a concrete solution to the prohibitive cost of housing for young people beginning families.

In a previous generation housing was affordable and a first house could be got with 1 and a half times the combined salaries of the couple asking for a mortgage. The cost of an average home far exceeds the abilities of the average industrial wage to get equity against it.

So the major part of any housing report should address this problem instead the report glosses over the problem. Furthermore we are told that the EU fiscal straight jacket imposed on Ireland means we cannot invest in housing on balance sheet and stay within EU imposed fiscal rules.

It gets worse. instead of embarking on a large-scale public housing programme procuring land, services and planning permission for large-scale development as we did in the past, the EU straight jacket requires Coveney to come up with inventive ways to bypass these rules.

So Coveney has come up with the idea that private sector development will be the way to go to reach his target numbers of new house builds. Now, wait, think of this for a moment.

Suppose you are a local builder with a plan to build a small estate of say 50 homes somewhere in one of Dublin’s suburbs.

You have the planning permission, services already in place, land purchased, ready to go, the only thing stopping you, according to Coveney, is finance; so perhaps Coveney from his €5bn will lend you the money as the banks won’t give it to you.

The Construction Federation of Ireland:

“Speaking at a CIF event in Dublin yesterday, Micheal Mahon of the Society of Chartered Surveyors said that his research showed a three-bedroom family home cost about €318,000 to build including a 15pc profit margin. That places those homes well above the estimated limit for most first-time buyers of €280,000 to €300,000.”

Amazingly there are no plans to reduce vat on new homes! Coveney will build these homes for €250,000 but cannot tell us how this will be done?

<div class=”ctx_content”>
CIF director Hubert Fitzpatrick said the shortage of new homes had long passed crisis point.

“Due to the cost of construction, many Irish homebuilders are finding residential development unviable.

“In many parts of the country, the cost of construction is so high relative to asking prices of existing houses they would be building at a loss. As a result, housebuilding activity outside the greater Dublin Area is stalled,” he said.”

http://www.independent.ie/business/personal-finance/property-mortgages/cost-of-building-houses-worsening-crisis-cif-34624889.html

So back to our local builder. Unless he is a fool he will not be lured by Coveney’s cheap money to build homes that no one can afford due to their high cost.

Coveney’s report is silent on reducing the high cost of home building so let’s call his report a dud!

Its a DUD report! Nothing but a shambolic aspirational mess.

Lets add to our disillusionment!

http://www.cso.ie/en/releasesandpublications/er/nie/nationalincomeandexpenditureannualresults2015/

CSO have just released a report stating that our GDP growth levels are at 26% incredible levels! On the face of it we should be sending in the gardai to investigate the Central Statistics Office as based on their statistics using formulae supplied to them by Eurostat it turns out because of the increase in GDP we have to contribute an extra €280,000,000 euro as contribution to EU funding.

I kid you not, beset with homelessness for up to 6000 of our citizens, hospitals bulging at the seams with trollies for A&amp;E patients and waiting lists for years, the EU wants another €280ml from us.

If you are part of the group think “Think Tank” describing Ireland’s GDP growth levels as incredible 26% everything is hunky dory  you should not be reading this as I’m one of that vast group that belong to those disillusioned with politics.

“So we seem to have had two big distortions in our GDP growth figures. The first was the deprecation of assets moved to Ireland. And the second was the jump in exports from contract manufacturing and tax inversions.”

There is a dearth of precise detail in the CSO figures but for sure they evidence scamming of tax payers across the world through smoke and mirrors accountancy tricks and tax avoidance loopholes that move massive corporate pockets through mail box companies set up in the IFSC for this purpose alone.

For example, through tax loopholes in the US profits can re relayed through an offshore mailbox company setup in Ireland by an American company and suddenly all its profits are tax free.

I would suggest the sudden rise in this activity is accelerated through the alarm caused by the declared intent of US politicians in congress and in the senate and including those going for election to stamp out these loopholes. These scams are being exploited before the guillotine falls and the US legislates against corporate inversions and similar scams.

lameDuck

Political Irony Inversions

The irony is the longer Taoiseach Enda Kenny stays the closer to the end he gets and the more unstable his government becomes. Inevitably the more damage Kenny does to Fine Gael’s credibility with the opposition and the public.

FF can sit back and enjoy the growing chaos. Meanwhile we can enjoy the spectacle of this charade as lame ducks fail to oust the chief lame duck.

But there appears to be method to the madness.

Frances Fitzgerald becoming de facto heiress apparent to the incumbent house of cards.

This seen in the appointment of James Reilly as deputy head of Fine Gael. He rides the crest of a wave losing his seat with Don Quixote like precision tilting at windmills  winding us up with fantasies of universal health care.

At the same time hospital trollies answer hospital waiting lists as Irish doctors and nurses flee the HSE while many refuse to join the wasteful and absurd call to the under 6’s to clog up GP waiting rooms .

I guess O Reilly’s job will be to drum up some support for Fitzgerald.

Its a clear case of Kenny’s Shakespearean hubris manifested in a poor amateur drama parade  of Bruton, Varadkar and O Reilly divertingly defending Kenny’s over reaching stay in office.

According to them the emperor is clothed in expertise, leadership qualities, the success of the Irish economy, lowering unemployment, white knight of Dublin’s north inner city: Not!

Those disillusioned with politics see beneath sham falsified unemployment figures based on zero hour part time contracts, growing taxes and charges driven by austerity with plans for more debt extraction to burden the young with the cost of so-called free education!

Europe is dragging this country down itself in severe decline with banks across the EU on the threshold of failure  long term Japanese deflation  best that can be hoped for.

Enda should go immediately. The longer he stays the more lasting damage he will do to Fine Gael. Some argue the longer he stays the better!

Curiously Kenny’s relationships with fellow European leaders built on accepting on Ireland’s shoulders 42% of what otherwise would be banking losses for French Santander and German Deutchbank and other European and US banks is touted as a plus.

Folks, he would have a bad relationship with them if he had succeeded in gaining anything but a refusal from even daring to ask for a burden sharing debt write down. But he’s loved for his obediently, jovial compliance and foolish smiles and incurious obedience.

That is what is being offered to us voters with Enda Kenny whose political demise appears to be as difficult to wrestle from his drowning grip as is democracy from Mugabi in Uganda.

Actually,  you can  plot it for a poor amateur drama production, its pretty simple to ‘make it up’.

Consider the following scenario with ‘lost his seat’ James Reilly, the party still reeling from election results no doubt due in part to his misjudged anachronistic and ironic call for universal health care for all with the irony of hospital waiting lists at an all time high.

Perhaps an audit of O Reilly’s property portfolio and that of all members of FG/LB in the last coalition may have thrown some light on the absence of regulation to prevent rents rising to an all time high,  lets not digress.

Reappointment of Reilly to the role of Tanaiste with a  role to talk to FG politicians around the country to reinvigorate the party is his mandate.

His close connection to Enda Kenny and his political proximity to Frances Fitzgerald would appear to make sense if he is meant by Enda Kenny to back Frances Fitzgerald as Enda’s heir apparent.

Frances Fitzgerald hasn’t been that highly visible in defense of Kenny, has she? So the plot thickens. The more time passes the more unstable Fine Gael becomes. This must be both tragic and comic.

This injects Bruton’s and Varadkar’s support for lame duck government by Enda Kenny with all the more ennui and mirth, but we’ll have to wait and see if such a plan pans out.

Just as we’ll have to wait and see if Simon Coveney rises to the task of reducing the cost of new house builds and actually builds a house that isn’t built on pyrite, mica and sand.

Meanwhile those disillusioned with such political manoeuverings look around at alternatives? Sinn Fein with its all Ireland machiavellian associations now wedded to remaining in Europe? What ludicrousness? Waffle Fianna Fail masters of the political uturn? No? Brechtian silence from Shane Ross bought off to unify and give stability to Fine Gael? What an unbroken horizon of despair?

Now supposedly independent but de facto state agencies like the Central Statistics Office in Orwellian Up is Down fashion cheer on government propaganda with leprechaun economics telling us:

““I’m not going to stand up and say the economy grew by 26 percent,” Power, an independent economist, said after the release. “It’s meaningless — we would be laughing” if these numbers came out of China, he said.”

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2016-07-12/ireland-s-economy-grows-26-as-u-s-companies-chase-lower-taxes

But wait there is hope on the horizon:

http://www.irishexaminer.com/ireland/angry-fine-gael-tds-question-enda-kennys-leadership-408942.html

There are those out there willing to say the emperor has no clothes on. So called recovery is a sham.

Homelessness, water charges, property charges, rent serfdom, calls to make students through loans pay for their education; young teachers and guards forced to take lower pay scales than their older colleagues, charity regulations in a mess, NAMA in an even bigger mess, our main trading partner rightly leaving the EU with enlightened Brexit, hospital waiting lists.

Yes there are those disillusioned with politics with their ears to the ground who don’t buy into the mantra pretence of success but who see through the shambolic and self serving politics of delusion led by those who would spread their delusions among us.

Brexit brings with it opportunity to join with those on these islands looking to bring reality back into politics, to discover a new and fairer world.

Irexit needs to be put before the Irish public as an option to escape the straight jacket of Europe and to reform relationships with NI and UK in new political and trade agreements.

A new alliance with greater independence for Scotland, an all Ireland 32 county political and trade based unified government, Wales and UK with greater ties than before and greater respect for independent voices could release these islands from the disaster that the EU has become.

The alternative is a glove puppet government wedded to its decline and the decline of Europe.

http://www.cso.ie/en/releasesandpublications/er/nie/nationalincomeandexpenditureannualresults2015/

http://www.thejournal.ie/housing-plan-coveney-2885156-Jul2016/

 

till again

 

 

Ireland was the only member state to hold referendums on The Treaty eventually passed as Treaty of Lisbon in October 2009. Already post Brexit there are calls for greater political union in Europe I’m guessing aimed at removal of Article 50 removing the means for member states to withdraw:

http://www.cnbc.com/2016/06/28/the-brexit-and-article-50-cnbc-explains.html

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Twenty-eighth_Amendment_of_the_Constitution_of_Ireland

Given the appalling way Ireland was saddled with no debt write down or debt sharing of Ireland’s bill for financial collapse carrying 42% of European financial losses that otherwise would have been carried by German and French banks the case for putting a referendum on membership of the EU has become compelling.

Added to the losses Ireland will incur through Brexit and added to the negative stance within Europe to Ireland’s corporation tax and arguments below, the Irish deserve a referendum to vote on their future within the future imposed on them by membership of the EU.

Ireland should also have a democratic say in any negotiations between the EU and the UK on Ireland’s future relationship re trade and borders. This is another compelling reason for providing a referendum on IREXIT.

Sinister intervention in Ireland by the European Commission on Water Charges forcing them upon the Irish electorate in spite of their declared wishes is an example of an erosion of democratic control of Irish affairs by unelected bureaucrats in the EU.

It’s not precisely the directive to have a certain water policy that galls but the audacious intervention in Irish sovereign taxation affairs that directs us to have separate water charges with a private, commercial monopoly running it.

How we raise the money through taxation should be a matter for Ireland alone. Water charges per se should not be part of the remit of the EU.

There is also the fear of undue influence by private commercial interests in the affairs of the EU wishing to dismantle public services to allow private commercial interests to loot public services for commercial gain.

This is not what membership of the EU was meant to be.

That the Irish derogation for water charges no longer applies is a result of Minister for the Environment  Alan Kelly’s refusal to ask for a derogation:

“In accordance with Article 9.4 of the Water Framework Directive our exemption is embedded in the 2008 River Basin Management Plan. Any renewal or cancellation of the exemption is done in the next 7 year RBMP. And it is the Minister for the Environment who assembles and submits this plan.

This 2015 River Basin Management Plan is due on be handed into Brussels by New Years Day. Both the Irish government and the European Commission are expecting that Minister Kelly will not renew the exemption and will instead include domestic water charging as part of Ireland’s strategy.”

Kelly built no houses for the homeless and gave away our water to private, commercial interests. Enough said of compliance, obedience and incompetence as certain politicians hand over national assets without thought for our national interests or the good of the people.

Meanwhile Enda Kenny is back from his trip to the UK where he successfully alienated the full Brexit movement’s future government by his interference in UK sovereign affairs.

How come Kenny was not asked to walk the plank after his election results is another question. A weak, Irish zombie government of those rejected at the ballot box is not helping in these turbulent times.

He was quoted by one remain politician in the Johnathan Dimbleby “Great Debate” that Kenny said border controls would have to be introduced if Brexit won as if the Irish government would insist on them. Fearful images of Armageddon, barbed wire and Berlin Walls were part of his politics of fear.

Only the most limited if any border controls should be introduced.

 

EU Say Ireland’s Domestic Water Charge Exemption Is Safe, Unless Alan Kelly Gives It Away On January 1st

Update: http://www.irishtimes.com/news/politics/eu-to-ireland-you-cannot-go-back-on-water-charges-1.2701502

Can you figure out how Scotland reconciles its wishes for independence with membership of the EU. They already have more independence and will have more independence in their relationship with the UK than they would ever get disappearing down the rabbit hole of the EU.

This blog celebrates the restoration of the democratic wishes of the British people that have arguably saved democracy itself from extinction. Congratulations to all Brexit campaigners who fought so well against so overwhelming odds.

Congrats to the UK on managing to drop the value of sterling. This will have a very positive effect on exports and reduce imports and should yield a healthy balance of payments result for the UK.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black_swan_theory

“The theory was developed by Nassim Nicholas Taleb to explain:

  1. The disproportionate role of high-profile, hard-to-predict, and rare events that are beyond the realm of normal expectations in history, science, finance, and technology.
  2. The non-computability of the probability of the consequential rare events using scientific methods (owing to the very nature of small probabilities).
  3. The psychological biases that blind people, both individually and collectively, to uncertainty and to a rare event’s massive role in historical affairs.”

While this blog campaigned virtually alone in Ireland for Brexit, pollsters and pundits and politicians got it wrong.

Not foreseeing the consequence of Brexit many in the Brexit camp have experienced a state of Black Swan paralysis and currently flounder in limbo unable to navigate a future path to address the issues Brexit has posed. At least that’s what Minister Noonan would have you believe disdainfully scorning Brexit campaigners for lack of future planning.

Not so. The description however does appear to describe well the remains of Noonan’s position on these matters.

Welcoming the positive affirmation of democracy that is in Brexit this blog will address these issues and point a way forward at least on 2 fronts.

Firstly, the UK will go through a process of disengagement with the EU while at the same time arrogating to itself responsibilities in areas previously controlled by the EU. This will require institutional changes and the inception and setting up within UK of parallel lines of responsibility within its own institutions of government and this may take some time to set in place.

It will have to renegotiate its fishery policy with the EU insisting that its borders be respected.

Independent self-government managing its own affairs responding to its own needs and mindful of the needs of the world at large is well within the remit and capabilities of the British people and its representative parliamentary democracy.

The UK needs time to apply its creative energies to this task.

Secondly, given the sad outcome of 2 great performances by both the northern and southern Irish soccer teams at European level our thoughts should wonder at what could be achieved by one single Irish team.

With Brexit our thoughts should be with joining northern Ireland as a single commonwealth entity with equal if not more independent stance than currently enjoyed by both Wales and Scotland. For this we need IRexit.

The sad state of political leadership in southern Ireland is missing the brilliant contribution that could be made by outstanding politicians such as Sammy Wilson or Teresa Villiers in the north.

Southern Ireland cannot afford to be a member of a failing EU with its largest trading partner and neighbour outside the EU; this combined with the fact our island of common interest is split in two. This could be an opportunity of ending “never the twain can meet”.

The second front upon which changes need to be made should be focused on the EU rather than the UK or Ireland.

Consider the following on the EU commission:

“The Commission remains politically answerable to Parliament, which has the power to dismiss it by adopting a motion of censure. The Commission attends all the sessions of Parliament, where it must clarify and justify its policies. It also replies regularly to written and oral questions posed by Members of Parliament.”(1)

It is noted here that a session of the European parliament is due to be convened to discuss all issues relating to Brexit.

This is much overdue following the emergence from the shadows of Angela Merkel announcing a summit of leaders including only France and Italy following Brexit. Leadership by proxy of Europe by Angela Merkel has emerged more and more into visible light since the financial collapse of southern, peripheral European states such as Greece, Portugal and also Ireland.

To observers such as yours truly this only adds to the belief that the EU is government by proxy of Europe by Germany. The implication for dodgy banks in Germany, France and especially Italy with debt to GDP hovering at 120% must have been high on the list of concerns.

Members of the European parliament apart from ex member Nigel Farage are generally a disenfrancised lot with no powers other than to rubber stamp what unelected and mysteriously lobbied and influenced members of the EU Commission allow them to rubber stamp.

But here is an opportunity for the members of the European parliament to censure the mishandling of Brexit by the commission and dismiss the EU commission.

Not a likely scenario but one I advocate. A more likely scenario is the highly paid MEP’s will churlishly say little if nothing and do less.

The European Commission has been woefully remiss in its treatment of David Cameron in its refusal to allow independent derogation for  UK comply with  massively deficient policies on emigration.

The EU commission has woefully mishandled the refugee crisis. It has been compromised by Germany’s go-it-alone policy.

It has allowed geopolitical concerns particularly in the alliance of inner core members such as Germany, France and Italy to exert undemocratic control over the now compromised independence of the European parliament.

It has sat by and allowed the banks of Germany and France to dictate undemocratic terms to the people of Greece.

It has allowed itself to be the pawn of external forces that have lobbied and compromised its independence challenging its role as a policy maker in Europe.

It has failed to shape policies to rebalance Europe and instead has sharpened the divide between northern and southern Europe.

It has had no effect on independent European monetary policy that instead through the European Central Bank followed a go-it-alone policy arguably in favour of monetary policies promoted by Germany looting peripheral members of the EMU.

“New EU rules on economic and financial governance help to Union resources clean up and strengthen the banking sector.”(1)

These rules show how compromised the European Commission is with lobby groups and so-called experts from the banking sector, Goldman Sach’s, Morgan Stanley, influencing and setting policy: those meant to be the subject of regulation choosing their own regulations.

The EU commission has become a toxic brake on European progress and become the pawn of shadowy lobby groups.

The EU commission is not an elected and democratic body but is instead leading member states along the path of totalitarian policies reminiscent of the previous USSR.

Dismissal of the EU commission pending its reform should be high on the agenda of next meeting of the European parliament. This is not likely to happen with even less likelihood of reform that will challenge special interest groups.

A little word on how the European Commission and the ECB have failed to help us in solving our housing crisis. Instead the following scenario is being played out across Europe in countries such as Ireland.

“The financial raiding of the American middle class is moving full steam ahead.  The ridiculous structure of the banking bailouts and artificially low-interest rates caused hot money from banks and big investors to crowd out regular families in the housing market.  Now here we are 7 years after the official conclusion of the Great Recession and regular American families are financially struggling while banks and big investors thrive.  Today 11 million Americans spend half of their income on rent.  Another 21.3 million spent over 30 percent of their income on rent.  With millions of properties being bought by investors since the Great Recession hit, all that has happened is a mega transfer of wealth.  You don’t build equity by renting but many people are simply priced out from buying a home.”(3)

In Ireland the European Commission has done nothing to support Ireland’s growing housing crisis.

It silently supports massive Quantitative Easing QE by the European Central Bank which has led to depreciation of the euro against other currencies.

With negative interest rates this has contributed to a global currency crisis increasingly pillaging the assets of savers and public services though austerity.

It has turned a blind eye to the odious terms imposed on Greece for its bailout while silently supporting the Highest EU debts as a proportion of GDP (2014 Q4)(4) debt levels of Greece, Italy, Portugal, Ireland, Cyprus and Belgium. Italy at 120% debt to GDP of particular interest.European-Debt-to-GDP-Ratios-Oct-2013

 

EU commission needs to be dismissed.

Its management of monetary matters left to the ECB is a failure and its consequences grow more toxic by the day.

 

 

A monetary backdrop to the work of the EU commission is a global fiat currency inflated to kingdom come by the Central Banks through Quantitative Easing.

A return to a gold standard or a similar bitcoin related inter currency standard to stabilise markets and give rise to fair savings and investment in R&D is required.

This is outside the remit of the European Commission and beyond the means of the ECB but its policies favour the maintenance and continuance of this failing currency system.

In a casino driven financial economy that is a bar to further human progress with the European Commission fronting a European banking system that has become the bad bank of Wall Street and the Federal Reserve;  austerity imposed on the people of Europe ;  funding the rich 1% with further giveaways through Draghi’s Quantitative Easing, its time the EU itself considered its future with debt levels described by above graph.

But it would appear through lobby groups and shadowy interests pulling the strings of the EU commission both in the case of banking regulations and the above Irish Water debacle, that the EU itself is fixed upon the path of maintaining the current system of looting and pillaging the middle classes.

The concept of private ownership ownership itself as it was in the USSR may become a distant memory for those who remain in the EU…

Congrats to Brexit saving democracy itself from extinction under the above.

 

    1. How EU Works:  https://eeas.europa.eu/delegations/singapore/documents/more_info/eu_publications/how_the_european_union_works_en.pdf
    2. http://www.bloomberg.com/news/videos/2016-06-27/alan-greenspan-u-k-brexit-a-terrible-mistake
    3. http://www.mybudget360.com/share-of-income-spent-on-rent-at-record-high-11-million-spend-half-income-on-rent/
    4. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/europe/greece/11705720/European-debt-crisis-Its-not-just-Greece-thats-drowning-in-debt.html

 

 

till again…

sittingonfenceFianna Fáil have escaped the embrace of the Fine Gael Preying Mantis. Bearing the prospect of shared gifts for everyone including Independents everything descended into an embarrassing shambles with Fine Gael aimlessly refusing to believe its offer of shared power had been shunned.

Likewise the Independents had their opportunity to play ball with Fianna Fáil vindicating their independence and opposition to Fine Gael policies prior to the election, they decided instead to sit on the fence hoping perhaps FG and FF would join hands and walk to the altar.

The prospect of FG and FF joined at the hip renouncing their election promises in favour of unconscionable compromise would have brought mirth and celebration into the ranks of the hurlers on the ditch, Sinn Féin.  It could have led to the destruction of both FG and FF and was a foolishly naive gambit by Enda Kenny: another failed strategy and failure of FG’s judgment grasping at straws.

Perhaps drunk on power FG refuse to let go.

They will speak to anyone and anybody in their quest to return to power. They will break any election promise they ever made in order to remain in power.

Independent (?) Katherine Zappone has sought to seize this opportunity by supporting Enda Kenny and turning her back on fellow independents. Perhaps hoping to be offered a ministerial portfolio?

Fianna Fáil now find themselves in the position of king-maker. They must be feeling good going into the latest round of negotiations. It may be wise of them to set a high price for their support or facilitation of Kenny. Perhaps insist Irish Water be buried as the nonsense it is. Then a list of Dail reforms including more gardai and more in the budget to save the A&E’s. This list could go on and on.

FF would be stronger going into the new election the prospect of which must entice many in FF who feel they are surfing a good wave with little to lose and much to gain in a new election.

Many independents may rue the day they didn’t put up a greater opposition to the prospect of a return to power of Fine Gael.

Both FG and Independents perhaps unwittingly have fallen into Fianna Fáil’s Venusian Fly Trap.

Meanwhile (1) an AIB whistleblower has complained to the ECB re AIB that its bad bank has been pumping bank loans to its good bank pretending they are good allowing the set aside of AIB provision for bad loans and at the same time claiming the saving of this money as profit.

Problems at AIB pale into insignificance to those at Germany’s  Deutsche Bank. Deutsche Bank’s 75 trillion-dollar exposure to derivatives makes it the world’s riskiest bank as the derivative roller coaster inflated by QE finally begins its downward ride. This will be accelerated by its exposure to Greece and especially to China compounded by recent billion dollar losses and chaotic management changes.

With alarm bells going off at the FED re the strength of the dollar; the failure of QE to stoke the US global economy with no result other than make QE addictive; the further division of the rich and the poor: the prognosis on Central Bank control of the runaway global economy is not good.

Next on the cards may be the devaluation of the dollar.

Did I mention the refugee crisis and Brexit looming shortly?

Global financial storm clouds are gathering and Ireland will need a strong stable government if it hopes to weather the storms ahead.

 

Postscript

Negotiations on the formation of an Irish government continue and today once again I heard on the RTE morning news an economist, a lecturer from Cork no less, speaking the above mentioned nonsense on Irish water.irishwater

He was talking of the merits of the commercialisation of Irish Water if left in private hands.

Sometimes one has not only to question the naivety and gullibility of spokespeople put forward to defend Irish Water, but their total lack of understanding of democracy itself or why we have elected politicians or government.

Perhaps there is a lack there in not having civics as part of the 2nd level curriculum. Or perhaps I’m being naive myself in not acknowledging that there are special interests involved who see rich commercial pickings in the entity known as Irish Water.

Our civics lesson is quite simple really. The reason we have elected politicians and government is the objective reasoning that collectively we as a people living in the Republic of Ireland recognise that certain utilities required by the people eg education, health, transport and Irish Water need development and protection from exploitation to serve the needs of the people as a whole.

They need to be protected from the limited and narrow requirements defined by commercial interest and instead developed and maximised in the most efficient and professional manner to serve the needs not of commercial interest, but that to which we refer as ‘the common good’.

Some economists may have the naive view that handing over Irish Water to private commercial interests will allow IW to borrow billions, to invest hugely in Irish water infrastructure with swimming pools on each street corner, reservoirs on every hill and jacuzzi in every house.

The reality is there is huge risk that vulture capital will purchase Irish Water, introduce asset stripping with huge job losses, scale back development, refuse to invest in new infrastructure and quickly sell off the looted and pillaged company for maximum profit at the earliest opportunity.

IW will also for commercial gain try to back door the Irish taxpayer to put money in with little or no accountability in place.

The above is why IW failed its market test set by Eurostat in April shutting the door on efforts by IW to have billions poured into it by the eu. It was plain nonsense to support the arguments for IW for this funding.

FG leading the charge in its Battle of Waterloo needs to get its act in order to drop the nonsense of IW, replace its leader who led them to such a disastrous outcome largely because of the Kenny IW hubris and nonsense: the plain people of Ireland need an election to sort out the mess current politicians appear unable to sort.

The sad tale of failed efforts by government to have Irish water both on and off-balance sheet see here (1)

It’s a tribute to our democracy we have not ended up with IW siphoning billions from the eu we would be on tap for through our water charges; IW siphoning more money to pay for more propaganda advertising and high salaries through our taxes; IW borrowing on the commercial markets we would also have to pay for; IW making efforts to seize control and sell on to another entity even less accountable; all the above without one penny spent of providing a drop of water.

Some economists would do well to study democracy alongside commercial law. It teaches there are some things that should not be trusted to the exploitative vagaries of the profit and sometimes morally corrupt motives that are often exploited by commercial law.

till again

1. http://www.independent.ie/irish-news/water/irish-water-crisis/revealed-the-chaos-behind-irish-waters-eurostat-failure-31598095.html

  1. https://whistleblowersireland.com/2010/10/19/aib-bank-whistleblower-complaint-being-investigated-by-financial-regulator/
  2. http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2016-02-03/it-time-panic-about-deutsche-bank

Ireland’s Big Lie

March 20, 2016

Many in Ireland are calling for government intervention in the housing and homelessness crisis. More social and private housing needs to be built to end waiting lists. Some argue the crisis will get a lot worse with upwards of 70000 in danger of losing their homes as vulture funds up their rents further while they continue their profiteering rampage.

Tunnel of Love/Lover's Leap.

Tunnel of Love/Lover’s Leap.

The Construction Federation of Ireland have said(1):

“The market price of many homes throughout the country is still well below the all-in construction cost. In a report commissioned by the IHBA from Walsh Associates, Construction Cost Consultants in 2014, the construction cost of a 3 bedroomed semi-detached house of 110 sqm is calculated at €225,961, in addition to site costs plus VAT at 13.5%.  According to the Daft House Price Report 2015 published today, the average asking price for houses in Carlow is €140,536, in Offaly it’s €138,247, while in Westmeath the average asking price is €145,804. Clearly, as long as sales prices for these houses are below replacement cost, the market will not support significant increases in the construction of new homes. As long as this situation prevails, little to no new housing will be built in these areas.

“The IHBA agrees that more housing is needed to meet the national demand.  However it is up to all stakeholders including government, banking, regulatory and development sectors to ensure that a viable construction environment is supported to ensure that this critical objective can be achieved.”

(2)”The Irish League of Credit Unions has offered the Government a €5 billion fund, which could be kept off the State’s official borrowing figures, to build thousands of homes over the next six years.

The league, which represents 437 credit unions and has savings in excess of €11 billion and total assets of more than €13 billion, has told the Government it currently has “surplus” funds of up to €8 billion.”

Stakeholders are asking that government take the reins and join the dots to lead and to create a much-needed housing programme to end the current crisis.

Yet the offer from the credit unions has been with government since last October with little or no response. Neither have Fine Gael Labour in their election manifestos warmed to the advance of the credit unions with election commitments to invest.

Each RTE programme, each media item on homelessness dwells on the thorny subject of last of investment, lack of planning, too great a government tax take while blame is handed from one agency to the other with no one seeing the wood from the trees.

Thus a large cover up has grown covering up the real cause of  our homelessness and housing crisis.

The real cause of our housing and homelessness crisis lies at the door of government compliance and obedience to the dictates of the Irish Central Bank. In fact, so great is the coverup that it has morphed into the biggest LIE perpetuated against the Irish people since the emergence of our state in 1916.

This LIE feeds upon and perpetuates complexity where none exists, it apportions blame elsewhere, it lies in the background concealed behind economic home truths that shame both Irish politicians and the people they represent. When Ireland was poor, vast housing estates on the periphery of Dublin city were built. Even in poverty, people had a place to live and affordable accommodation. Shamefully thousands of families are about to experience emergency accommodation unsuitable for families especially children.

Clearly credit unions have the money to invest over and above their reserve requirements see page 80 (3) However, the billions in assets of credit unions exist on deposit in major Irish banks and as deposits they are part of the reserve requirements or Irish banks under the umbrella of the Irish Central Bank.

Deposits of Irish Credit unions are being used to shore up a system of lack of investment in Irish property. There is no appetite in government to use these deposits to threaten an Irish banking loan book dependent on high prices and anathema to the ideals of affordable housing/social housing.

Furthermore, investment in the building of affordable housing in Ireland will compromise the investment liquidity of vulture funds in Ireland perhaps encouraging a quicker turnover of these assets and a fire sale.

The fragile nature of the mortgage sector in Ireland with billions in outstanding loans in negative equity means banks cannot afford a drop in prices causing further negative equity and a large threat to their outstanding loan book.

Many are against a large scale building programme as this may eat into their potential profits. Deposits of the credit unions are there to shore up the banks and will not be allowed freedom to invest in aspects of the Irish economy requiring sovereign investment.

Guarding against this will be the task of a puppet government tasked with defending the 1% against the 99%.

In this scenario of ‘fragile recovery’ its easier for the Irish Central Bank to lie and point to other reasons for the Irish homelessness crisis, to sing as Rome burns.

On the above count alone, there is reason to renegotiate our loan book with the ECB and look to an Irish exit from the EU along with Brexit.

At least this would give our children and next generation a home to live in. Or not be saddled with 40% of the euro cost of the financial crisis to European banks.

Clearly the Irish Central Bank ICB has neither the will nor the way to stand up for this country in its dealings with the ECB. While Irish politicians and most of the media seem happy enough to paddle homelessness and our housing crisis over the waterfall.

till again.

(1) http://cif.ie/news-feed/news/628-response-to-minister-kelly-commentary-on-social-housing-development.html

(2) http://www.irishtimes.com/news/ireland/irish-news/credit-unions-offer-government-5bn-housing-fund-1.2577604

(3) https://www.centralbank.ie/about-us/Documents/ICURNCreditUnionPeerReviewReport_July2015.pdf

Given Germany’s earlier negotiating position that Greece should be expelled from the euro zone for a period of 5 years, has Germany decided to opt instead for a set of proposals so unconscionable to Greece hoping Greece will find the terms so unpalatable, they would secede without the euro zone’s finger prints on the trigger.

Its a huge credit to Syriza instead of walking away, they have achieved terms they can put before the Greek people instead of the disenfranchisement meted out to Irish people including their parliament.

In a week when we listened to ex Taoiseach, Brian Cowen express remorse that we were bundled into a bailout without our consent; that our bailout was no so much negotiated as unwrapped and admired like an Xmas present from the ECB, it must have been embarrassing for our incumbent Taoiseach to witness  bruising efforts of Greece making a stand for its people.

On the other hand,  he did not have to appear before the Banking Inquiry to explain during the Celtic Tiger years why Fine Gael policies favoured even more deregulation of the banks and an even bigger mess with Fine Gael support for removal of stamp duty and other fuel-the-boom policies. Instead Enda Kenny decided to undermine and counter Greece’s negotiating position.

Suicidal Smiley

You might think that a bailout country would be an ally of Greece and express solidarity with its demands for a better deal. Not so.

Instead, we have been treated to an attack on democracy of unprecedented proportions by Enda Kelly and Michael Noonan and FG henchmen such as Michael Kelly MEP lobbying against Greek proposals for debt write down and a better deal.

Towards its conclusion, in spite of Enda Kenny’s visit to Italy to lobby against Greece, the only allies of Greece turned out to be Francois Hollande of  France with Italy, Portugal, Spain, in the wings. Matteo Renzi, the Italian Prime Minister, hosting a visit by Enda Kenny, must have thought Kenny’s views ‘quirky’ if not outright crazy.

Consider the following chilling interview in which Kelly rejects the ‘populist’ view, currently being amortized into a denigratory term  alarmingly subverting democratic political and institutional instruments and by implication attacking and subverting  the political affairs of a sovereign country and fellow member of the eurozone:

http://europarlradio.eu/interview-with-fine-gael-mep-sean-kelly-on-greece/

Measure also the involvement of the Greek parliament in debt restructuring and debt negotiation and compare with Ireland’s current Economic Management Council, where certain matters are not even allowed air before members of the Fine Gael party, outside this technical group; never mind, as in our bailout decision, put before parliament for debate.

Its clear from this interview Kelly would like a more compliant Vichy type technical group in Greece to replace a ‘populist’ Greek government. This group would be forced to pay reparations and extract odious debt from Greece including the selling off of private assets to the tune of €50bn, islands, ports, other valuables in return for another unworkable bailout.

Good deal, if you are a director of Germany’s Deutsche Bank, a global banking and financial services bank, who must have cracked open the champagne with thoughts of the private purchase of one of those Greek islands to celebrate  on news of the deal.

Kelly states the Greek government and not austerity should take the blame for the failure of austerity;  if in Ireland Fine Gael played the populist card, according to Kelly,  we would have ended up in the same position.

We must therefore logically assume FG who put policies before the previous election that included restructuring Ireland’s debt, namely, burning bondholders and demanding debt write-down, falsely claiming there was agreement for debt write down in June 2012, were at best hypocritical,  they were at worst lying to the ‘populist’ electorate.

We must assume FG/LB are not ‘populist’ parties claiming according to the Webster dictionary, to represent the views of the ‘common people’.

Debt write down is not supported by Kenny and Kelly.

In fact, supported by their satellites in the media, FG tout Ireland’s negotiation of its promissory note as successful ‘debt profiling’. ‘Debt profiling’ means ‘extend and pretend’, endless and laborious negotiations, clipping coupons, extending maturities. Both debtors and creditors factor in growth forecasts, inflation, and other economic permeable assets to pretend debt will be repaid.

 

liabilities

Its clear Greek debt will not be repaid.

There is another lesson some economists including Dan O Brien, whom I admire in many respects, cannot seem to get the head around.

When  a country goes into default, both creditors and debtors, must take the loss.

Otherwise, there is no incentive on lenders to end profligate and foolish lending.

Its a simple axiom that is foolishly being ignored also by the IMF involved in debt restructuring in the euro zone. For this legacy, Christine Lagarde and  IMF failure to insist on write down, the IMF will have to pay the piper eventually. It will fail to lure away with its magic pipe deflation and the worsening effects of decline of the euro fallen from 1:40 to 1:10 against the rickety dollar of a little more than a year ago.

If lending is owed to itself as in the case of a Japan or EMU, if debt hasn’t the means to restructure debt by way of debt write down in EMU, with powers of enactment similar to those in the Federal Reserve,  extortion and bullying of member states, comes into play.

In recent negotiations the EU has veered to a totalitarian version of the  latter.

France, Italy and Germany have all  avoided  both structural reforms and paying the bill for Greece. One rule for the rich another rule for the poor.

The euro zone is particularly vulnerable to deflation because of Germany’s insistence on too much fiscal austerity. Increasing the debt burden on Greece and adding austerity has as much chance of saving Greece as it has of saving the euro.

Debt write-down appears to make common sense and would appear recently in the case of Greece to have the support of France and the US. However, the truth is the financial services industry have so wired the global economy since 1970, that any canary in the mine such as Greece, can bring the global economy down. How is this so?

CDS defaults in the unregulated financial services industry have so trip-wired the European and global economy that a default in Greece dollar on dollar could cost banks in Europe in particular Deutsche bank, multiples in the 10’s of the actual discount or write-down these countries could negotiate.

Say 40% or €100bn were written off, actual cost to Deutsche Bank and other French banks could be in multiples of 10 of that figure in terms of the cost of underwriting the CDS default paper these banks are on tap for.

Unfortunately, the fiat money system that is entirely paper based since the dollar was taken off the gold peg in 1971, has been allowed to develop entirely without regulation since then to its present state and is currently a financial bomb primed to explode if set off by even a small canary.

The financial services industry has become the global casino spawning the global tapping of taxpayers money that should instead be earmarked for real economic development and social services instead of serf protectorates such as Greece funneling serf tithes back to anonymous bankers and bondholders.

Since 1970 power in the financial services industry has loaded on risk, got bailed out , blocking regulations, broken the law without accountability. TBTF banks and financial institutions have over ruled the real economy and replaced it with a virtual economy manipulating values eg in the commodity markets.

Its Achilles heel however, is that the real economy will always win out in the end. Gravity in the face of such manipulation is currently being experienced in deflation in the euro zone with slowing growth worldwide in currencies exposed to these same risks.

http://thehill.com/blogs/blog-briefing-room/news-campaigns-economy-budget/204483-warren-blasts-financial-services

If the deal with Greece goes ahead, kicking the can down the road, the euro itself has backed itself into a corner, austerity with its political and social negatives, will weaken the euro further.

1953 london debt conference https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/London_Agreement_on_German_External_Debts

Creditors are currently threatening to bring the house down if they are not repaid. Its time not to pour good money after bad, bring the house down and rebuild on a solid foundation fit for human progress and end the fraudulent deceit of the current shambolic and unregulated mayhem looting and pillaging debtor nations such as Greece.

Greece should go it alone and rally its people behind its own currency. Volunteer groups within its own society should support communities in education and health. It should follow the path of Iceland.

On the back jacket of “Confessions of an Economic Hit Man” 2004 is written, “John Perkins should know he was an economic hit man for an international consulting firm that worked to convince poorer countries to accept enormous development loans – and to make sure that such projects were contracted to U.S. companies. Once these countries were saddled with huge debts, the American government would request their “pound of flesh” in favours, including access to natural resources, military cooperation and political support.”

We need an audit of the debts of Ireland and especially Greece to examine where the money went, how much German companies were made rich eg Siemens, on money lent to Greece by Germany, how much was diverted to eg military spending in a country known for corruption and obedient compliance with profligate, looting lenders.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/London_Agreement_on_German_External_Debts

In 1953, the Treaty of Versailles was revisited in the London Debt conference and Germany had its debt written down by over 50%. Importantly these obligations would only trigger on a trade surplus. This gave Germany the opportunity to rebuild itself in the post war years.

“The total under negotiation was 16 billion marks of debt resulting from the Treaty of Versailles after World War I which had not been paid in the 1930s, but which Germany decided to repay to restore its reputation. This money was owed to government and private banks in the U.S., France and Britain. Another 16 billion marks represented postwar loans by the U.S. Under the London Debts Agreement of 1953, the repayable amount was reduced by 50% to about 15 billion marks and stretched out over 30 years, and compared to the fast-growing German economy were of minor impact.[2]

An important term of the agreement was that repayments were only due while West Germany ran a trade surplus, and that repayments were limited to 3% of export earnings. This gave Germany’s creditors a powerful incentive to import German goods, assisting reconstruction.[3]

Its sad to see Germany impose its version of the Treaty of Versailles on a victim of the euro such as Greece with the obedient compliance of  euro zone leaders such as our own, Enda Kenny.

 

Postscript

 

Following his trashing of elected representatives of the Greek people, I never thought I would agree with anything Wolfgang Schauble,  German Federal Minister of Finance,  had to say about Greece.

But today on German radio Shauble has repeated an earlier position, that Greece would be better off with Grexit for a period of 5 years. This would enable Greece to negotiate debt write-down and do the necessary reforms to get its economy in shape. Within the EMU, debt write-down is not on the cards.

Returning to the drachma and having a parallel currency of the euro is not without its hardship difficulties.

It would require a mobilisation of a vast volunteer effort within Greece to offset the worst implications of this for its people.

Judging by their huge success in standing up for Greece at the political level, if the Greek people can mirror only a fraction of this effort, debt write-down with a quick return to order and return of Greece to markets is within their scope.

Austerity in Greece has already made their country competitive and has generated a surplus.

Their banking issues require debt write-down of the order of 60%. Devaluation and return to the drachma can turn around the fortunes of Greece in the shortest time possible.

 

till again

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

http://news.goldseek.com/GoldSeek/1436288044.php

I am Charlie Grexit

January 11, 2015

deflationThe euro has tumbled in world markets its decline accelerating in recent months from a high of $1.3993 last May to $1.1868 over the past few days stimulated by fears of a Greek exit and the failure of Mario Draghi’s negative interest rates and austerity to reverse its downward spiral.

Fuelling the decline is speculation of an imminent announcement that a stimulus of up to 1 trillion euros is on the cards.

Figures show deflation is taking hold across the euro zone.

Why this is bad, explained by Paul Krugman here http://krugman.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/08/02/why-is-deflation-bad/?_r=0

The effects of low growth are magnified with higher unemployment rates exacerbated in the euro zone by public health, education and social security programmes eg

http://ec.europa.eu/social/main.jsp?catId=26&langId=en

The cost of entitlements have a deeper effect in the euro zone than in the US where half of US citizens got little more than one day’s vacation over 2014. Morality demands the population be served by government not exploited by a slave owning elite.

Further deflationary pressures are caused by falling property prices. In Ireland this has led to pressure from the Central Bank and government to stimulate this sector through dubious means.

Asset purchases from NAMA through foreign vulture funds combined with shortages due to lack of construction, lack of lending into the property sector, a hike of 20% on required deposits for mortgages maintain asset prices through induced shortages, have created a market that has priced real people out of the market and made it the domain only of the super rich.

A market depending on the spending of the super rich and excluding ordinary people is a dysfunctional market that cannot last long. There are fears a whole generation will be condemned to renting from a rental market controlled by vulture funds and the rich as property is put beyond the reach of ordinary people.

It’s likely that austerity is the euro zone will put further pressure on indebted members to cut the cost of public health and social security programmes forcing countries to change their Health Service Executive into Trolley Service executives.

Government bonds under increasing pressure eg Greece to find buyers on international markets through negative perceptions re decline in the euro zone, will force pressure on Draghi to be buyer of last resort and thus lead to massive QE for Europe.

What are the implications of QE for eurozone?

One effect of QE is to drive bond prices higher and bond yields lower. This could have a negative effect on the eurozone. If the stimulus were a success, leading to stronger economic growth and inflation, then bond yields could rise as happened in the US as investors assumed economic growth and inflation would follow.

It’s a risky business but it may be the only card left to play in the eurozone’s last chance saloon. Its more likely to fail as countries such as Greece weighed down by massive debt forcing growth into the long stall, demand burden sharing and force default. In turn, this will create pressure on other countries such as Spain, Italy, Cyprus and Ireland.

Figures for 2014 show prices across the euro zone falling into deflationary levels. The effect of this is to worsen the plight of countries and individuals heavily in debt. Spending is put off in expectation of further price falls. Contracts large and small are forced to go for tighter profit margins. Prospect of Japanese stagnation and slow decline beckons.

Growth can no longer save economies already doomed with insurmountable debt burdens.

Add to the above mix the prospect of imminent defeat of right-wing parties in coming elections. From the certain defeat of Enda Kenny in 2016 to the imminent defeat at the end of this month of Greek premier Antonio Samaras both poster boy proponents of the poisoned chalice of austerity.

In Greece the left-wing Syriza party is likely to win. Alexis Tsipras has led Syriza with the banner of 50% write down of Greek debt.

Write-down sends shivers  leading to  euro tumbling in world financial markets.

Recent measures to build walls around the euro with the ESM are not built to withstand Greek default that can spread contagion to Spain, Cyprus and Italy.

It’s likely Draghi will try massive QE to stimulate the euro, stem the outflow from Greek debt write-down demands.

Part of the developing scenario may mean stay/go negotiations with Greece with no debt write-down on the table for Greece.

In such a situation Tsipras may steer Greece out of the euro looking for support from China and Russia with the euro zone choosing to sacrifice Greece to save itself.

Whether Greece stays or goes massive buying of government bonds through QE may then save contagion from spreading to other peripherals such as Spain, Portugal, Cyprus.

However, QE for the euro zone is not without its risks.

In Ireland we’ve experienced the side effects of US QE with foreign vulture fund activity in NAMA buying everything that moves. It’s likely that the purpose of QE to stimulate economic activity will stimulate the wrong kind of activity with negative downside.

Contagion of shadow banking with $600 billion only in collateral chasing trillions of derivatives blighted by cross puts similar to  mortgages in Ireland when paper deeds from single properties were used over and over again to leverage more and more blighted assets, is a tinder bed in shadow banking ready to ignite. Perhaps Grexit could lead to worldwide stock collapse of the bull market fed by QE.

Banks prefer the paper financial markets to real markets.

An example of wrong kind of activity is requirement by the Irish Central Bank to limit mortgages to those with 20% deposits requiring couples to pony up €80000 to acquire mortgage on €400,000 house. Rise in contract working and lack of permanent positions even in well paid employment make these mounts unrealisable for the majority.

The irony is  if prices are driven down by this requirement, if a large quick fix construction programme is begun, if NAMA releases its property portfolio into the rental market, this would have a negative impact on the balance sheet of Irish banks. The capital base of Irish banks would fall, negative equity and a deflationary spiral would ensue.

You might wonder what policy and regulatory framework gives rise to the above craziness from the Irish Central Bank?

If you are a member of the banking inquiry this might even whet your appetite to fall back to the years 2006-2008 to examine in detail the advice being given to the Irish financial markets at that time to the government, in particular the regulator, by the Irish Central Bank .

You might even want to talk to Mario Draghi or Jean-Claude Trichet to microsope  ECB involvement in the collapse of the Irish economy?

Mario Draghi has refused to come before the Irish Banking inquiry to answer such questions.

I thought there may be some answers given by Professor Honahan in his essay contribution to “Brian Lenihan In Calm and Crisis” edited by Brian Murphy, Mary O Rourke  and Noel Whelan published by Merrion Press before Xmas.

Regularly hauled out as an oracle on the Irish economy,  a  regular Rasputin to Irish tsars, the secret shadows of the Irish Central bank activities, are kept under wraps by Honahan.

No luck there, he gives no information away confining himself to prognostication on the performance of Brian Lenihan as minister for Finance under the shadowy grip of economic forces the Irish Banking Inquiry one doubts has the capacity to probe.

The Irish Banking Inquiry so far has no Judge Bailey Sean Dunne probity form. Honahan gives nothing away vis a vis ECB involvement with the Irish Central Bank.

How accountable was the ECB and the Irish Central Bank in management of the Irish financial crisis?

The compliance, subservience obedience and servitude of the Irish negotiating position is summed up by Honahan, P80, Brian Lenihan in Calm and Crisis:

“While he undoubtedly considered it a failure to have had to have recourse to a financial rescue package from international official sources, in fact, Brian deserved considerable credit for pushing ahead with negotiations without the ineffective grandstanding or attempted blackmail that some other countries have sometimes tried with the IMF. By embarking on the protection of the programme long before he ran out of cash, he enabled the Irish negotiators to settle on what has been a much more gradual path of fiscal correction than that imposed on other peripheral countries.”

Notice the way Honahan steers blame away from ECB by mentioning the IMF as lender of last resort. In fact IMF officials objected to the severity of the package offered to Ireland, but this was resisted by ECB who held sway as lenders over the IMF.

Blackmail is mentioned by Honahan, but facts show Ireland was blackmailed into agreement not to burn bondholders. Ineffective grandstanding is another contemptuous term used to try and stop comparisons between Iceland and Ireland, with Iceland succeeding and Ireland failing in falling victim to odious extortion by an elite cadre who had sold out taxpayers, to preserve their personal wealth and power base.

This is paid for currently by Irish people on trollies in A&E departments across Ireland with their health service in ruins.

Honahan’s role in vindicating the right of Irish people to fair treatment by external bondholders can be likened to that of Dermot MacMurrough circa 1120 who made his way to the Court of Henry II of England and offered to become a vassal to the King in return for military aid in retaking his kingdom.

Honahan and the Irish Central Bank negotiators retook Ireland for the ECB. They did not vindicate the rights of Irish taxpayers; they did not repudiate odious debt.

The terms of the bailout delivered to Ireland were subsequently watered down when other precedents for interest rate reductions for Greece and Portugal were set, that were less odious.

But its true, Irish negotiators gave up without a fight.

Perhaps Honahan will be brought before the Irish banking inquiry and given the same grilling Judge Bailey has given the Dunnes in the US. But I wouldn’t bank on it.33

At times, you would be forgiven for thinking Honahan was minister for Finance himself and that he had usurped that office.

The real shadow cabinet of Kenny, burton, Noonan and Howlin takes its orders from the erstwhile dictator Big Brother Mario Draghi with Honahan as underling.

For them, there is no third estate pillar of democracy with the right to freedom of information, the right to share this information with the public. This is a drift to extreme right-wing dictatorship unheard of in the past.

As if to emphasise this point during the past week, Censorship and propaganda stalked the land.

http://www.independent.ie/irish-news/politics/exclusive-fine-gael-snubs-vincent-brownes-tv3-general-election-debates-30893048.html 

Vincent Browne has been targeted both by Fine Gael and Labour the same week Charlie Hebdo was targeted by terrorists attacking freedom of expression in the media.

“Independent.ie can reveal that the party has refused to allow of any of its candidates to take part in the debates in what has come as a major blow to the broadcaster”

Surely the seriousness of this attack on freedom of expression and blatant effort at censorship should at least warrant every independent in the Dail refusing to attend until this odious ban is lifted?

Perhaps FG/LB do not wish to be questioned on the claim of growth levels for 2015 of 5% for one of the most heavily indebted countries in the world, in the face of deflationary or no growth in Europe, hospitals without beds for citizens, teachers on strike to prevent standards from falling further, only part-time jobs in the public sector, mostly contract jobs in the private sector, induced shortages in the property sector.

After the Irish water fiasco and the burning of the Junior Cert fiasco, his refusal to allow FG/LB candidates  to appear on TV with Vincent Brown, will Enda Kenny to prevent political debate like Goebbels organise a public burning of books?

 

Till next time.

 

 

End