Thursday, 17 November 2011

Upside-down logic

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November 17th 2011

I’m one of those of the persuasion that there’s a logical explanation for almost everything but when it comes to this bank bailout issue, I think even Stephen Hawkins would be bamboozled. Riddle me this please, anyone:
  • ·         To enable our Central Bank continue to borrow c.€100bn from the ECB, we agree to assume, in full, over €70bn in bank bond debt, a sum that itself will exceed €100bn before it’s finally paid off. That makes some kind of economic sense?
  • ·         €55bn in bank bonds due over the next four years, from banks which we own almost in their entirety (four fully, two majority shareholder) – where will that money come from, if not from us?
  • ·         All that money will be borrowed from the generous ECB of course, on top of our already massive and still growing sovereign debt – how in heaven’s name is this sustainable?
  • ·         How did the wrong thing to do on February 24th 2011, one day before the general election, become the right thing to do on February 26th? Less than a year ago every single member of the Fine Gael and Labour parties spoke vehemently against the imposition of the November 2010 Agreement with the troika (IMF/EU/ECB), talk of betrayal and treason bandied about, voted en-masse against it in the Dáil; now, if another vote were held on the imposition of that same agreement, every single one of those same two parties would vote in favour, not a single voice stating categorically that we should NOT carry out its terms. They don’t WANT to do it, any more than any of the discredited FF/Greens coalition wanted to do it, but they’re doing it nevertheless.
  • ·         Cowen, Kenny, Noonan, Gilmore, Howlin, these are direct political descendants of Eamon de Valera, Michael Collins, William T Cosgrave, James Connolly, Jim Larkin, men who risked life and limb to win independence, who fought and overcame phenomenal odds, yet these modern heroes hand over sovereignty without a fight. Oh, with a whimper alright, pleading to be allowed burn SOME bondholders and in the process humiliating themselves and the nation they supposedly represent, but that isn’t a fight, it’s not even an argument – just burn them, THEN it becomes a fight.
  • ·         Greatest mystery of all – the Irish have a long and world-wide reputation as a proud, intelligent, independent-minded nation of fighters, and yet with the exception of a stubborn few, we’re allowing this pillage of our economy happen without real protest. €3.8bn in cuts/taxes in Budget 2012, €3.77bn in bank bonds to be paid just in the next two months alone. No money to keep our most venerable in their usual hospital beds, no money for badly-needed extra front-line public service staff, no money for third-level education, no money for infrastructure, but we can find billions for the failed bank bondholders.
Logic? Where this bank bond bailout is concerned, there is none.

Regards, Diarmuid O'Flynn.