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Are the Irish revolting? They should be!

This is a link to a YouTube video. Its about 12 minutes long (but just a couple of minutes will give you a flavour of what’s happening) and the sound quality is not perfect. But it’s quite moving. It shows some homeowners in Ireland disrupting an auction where their properties (which have been repossessed by their banks) are being sold off to speculators http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m6rbBiY3A6g&feature=player_embedded

Before the 2007/8 financial crash the Irish economy was pretty healthy.  Wolfgang Schauble, the German finance minister, claimed: “It is an indisputable fact that excessive state spending has led to unsustainable levels of debt and deficits that now threaten our economic welfare.” But, in fact, Ireland and Spain were running a budget surplus – unlike Germany (click on chart to see more clearly)

What wrecked Ireland’s economy was the catastrophic decision by the utterly corrupt Irish government to bail out Ireland’s utterly corrupt banks.

Ireland has always been run by a small Mafia-like group of politicians, bankers and their business cronies. And the Allied Irish Bank (AIB), where I have worked, was the largest and most corrupt bank in Ireland.

As we now know from the release of taped conversations, the directors at the AIB realised in 2008 that the game was up, the AIB was finished and all their crooked loans to themselves, politicians and their business cronies would be exposed. They realised they could never get the money needed to save their own skins. So they deliberately lied about the scale of their problems to get about €7bn in aid from their friends in the Irish Parliament. Their idea was that once the Irish Government had handed over an initial €7bn, it would be impossible for the Government to refuse further help as any refusal would expose the Government as being incompetent and wasting €7bn if the AIB crashed despite the first €7bn in help. Once the first €7bn of Irish taxpayers’ money was handed over, the AIB then demanded more and then more and then even more. As one Irish journalist explained: “this meant that the government was putting, directly or indirectly, at least €30bn into a bank with an appalling history of cooking its books, manipulating its share price and giving vast secret loans to its own directors and executives. To put this sum into perspective, it is about the same as the total tax revenues of the Irish state in 2009”.

The Irish, perhaps more than any other European people, were robbed by their corrupt politicians, business bosses, bureaucrats and bankers. And while the Irish economy has been devastated by the collapse and then rescue of its banking system, many of the main culprits (politicians, bureaucrats, businesspeople and bankers) have walked away from the wreckage tens of millions and, in some cases, hundreds of millions of euros richer. They should be prosecuted and sent to prison, but never will be.

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1 comment to Are the Irish revolting? They should be!

  • right_writes

    Granted the Irish banks and government are known for their corruption… I have good knowledge of Ireland, having been married to an Irish lady for over thirty years and having spent much time there…

    It has to be said though that, during the time of the “Celtic Tiger” I had nephews that were building various empires, and I was continually warning them that this was not real, it couldn’t be real, and that it would all come tumbling down… I was basically laughed at, told I was an old sourpuss from England, and various other things.

    I also asked them that if they thought that the British were bad, what the hell were they doing getting into bed with the ‘effin Germans, who had absolutely no affinity and no history… benign or otherwise? I pointed out that the Euro would break them…

    I have nothing to say now.

    BTW: What was that bloke ranting on about the “British” going on about?

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