Government Subprime Scheme Destroys Rural Ireland

?? those figures arent a “tax as a % of persons income”. Dublin has more facilities. Far Far more than rural areas. It is a world away.

This does not equal proof of subsidies

No its not a “more correct” way of looking at it. Both ways are equal. Is the glass half empty or half full?

I have not seen any “low prices” in rural ireland for a long time. Although what one terms “low” varies from person to person.

Your solution is tax em if they are not involved in agriculture. Great way to prevent anything other than agriculture in rural areas.

Ok show me, prove where rural dwellers pay less* relative to the services* they get Versus urban dwellers and I`ll go with your tax, but I wont exclude agriculture. Tax em all be fair.

I actually can’t believe some of the people on this site, I distinctly said urban areas, and immediately they assume I only referred to Dublin!
We have 6 cities at least - Cork, Dublin, Galway, Kilkenny, Limerick and Waterford.
Urban areas refers to those areas above and those areas that have an URBAN Council for example Athy, New Ross, Listowel etc!
Now that we know what the word “Urban” means, let us ask ourselves if services are more more expensive to run in rural areas?
If services in rurla areas are cheaper, then
why was Bord Gais reluctant to pipe gas to low density rural areas without a subsidy,
why is Iarnrod Eireann asking for a subsidy to operate the Western Rail Corridor,

Why is Bus Eireann afraid of private operators cherry picking the routes such as Dublin/Cork(high populated areas) if the service is not that expensive to run in rural areas.

Why did Eircom find that the payback period for an investment in broadband in an urban area is higher than that for a rural area.
An Post are against competition because they believe that competitors will only stick to urban areas and leave the rural areas to them, and the profit, if any, is In fact the quote from that link reads

I could go on, but the facts speak for themselves, [cost of service/number of people using the service] will obviously be lower in urban areas.
As regards the allegation that urban areas have more crime than rural one is not true, the level of crime in Dublin 4 South is a lot lower than some small provincial villages(that aren’t urban areas as they don’t have an urban council). The reason for anti-social behaviour etc is heavily correlated with affluence, activities for young people, historic precidence for crime, its not simply, more people in the one area means more crime!
I’ve not said that I believe that everyone should live in an Urban area, but I do believe that we should accept that our services have a higher cost because of our sparse population.

The issue unfortunately is that in terms of recognising that those services have a higher costs, those that live in Dublin don’t want to cross-subsidise those higher costs. This is whence the Dublin versus the rest of the world discussion on this thread. Other urban areas are not as caught up in the them versus us mentality.

I don’t think most Dubliners (and I’m from a smallish town originally) want to eliminate the effective subsidy they give to rural areas as there is a general acceptance that there should be universality of essential services in this country. What is grating however is to listen to certain rural politicians whip up the Dublin versus the rest attitude when the areas they represent are doing disproportionally well out of the distribution of resources. We need as a country to accept that rural once off housing has sometimes significant costs to society and discuss whether we want to continue subsidising the activity.

Fine. I’d like to cook and eat a person I kidnap at random. Are you going to dictate to me that I can’t?

Can you see your statement is essentially meaningless? A person opting for one-off housing is imposing costs on others. In other words, they are limiting the choices of others and effectively dictating those limits. What organised society is about is how we manage that process, because the fantasy that ‘dictating’ can be avoided just doesn’t exist in this particular universe.

Have you anything to actually base this outlandish comment on, other than leveraging stereotypes?

This is an incredibly simplistic comment. Are you suggesting that 1/3 of the population of Ireland concentrating in Dublin is equivalent to 1/3 of the population of the USA concentrating in Mega City one?

This statement does not reflect the reality of Irish life. Nobody brought all the jobs to Dublin. They ended up there despite incredible efforts to choke the city and send jobs elsewhere. We’re not going to make progress if we try to pretend things are otherwise that as they are.

The main problem with regional development is and has been the inability to create concentrations around the regional cities. Kilkenny can’t stomach the thought of Waterford growing, and so forth. Its not a zero sum game with Dublin cornering all the jobs. If there was a regional centre of scale, it would be an additional growth centre. That means a place called Ireland might benefit.

But lets get away from the kind of language that suggests the solution is to choke Dublin to death, as that’s what’s stunted our national development for so long.

Indeed, but aren’t you sort of avoiding rather than addressing tinneym’s points? Indeed, Dublin is far, far from being an example of a well planned city. But surely the point is that the alternative to this isn’t ‘oh, I’m off to build a house in the countryside where I’ll end up drinking the run-off from my neighbour’s septic tank. It’s the quality of life thing’.

Well, it sort of depends on who gets the costs and who gets the benefits. Its not your prerogative to load up costs on others without limit.

In fairness, its hard to work out what exactly other urban areas are ‘caught up in’, as they are effectively passengers in this debate. They shouldn’t be, but they are.

Yes it is. It shows that predominantly rural counties frequently don’t even raise enough tax to cover their social transfers, leaving a deficit to be made out of central funds. The lions share of those central funds come from the Dublin and Mid East region.

Now, can I say I’ve no interest in prolonging a debate where plain facts are denied. If you want to demonstrate that people will refuse to accept realities that they find uncomfortable, it really isn’t necessary as I know that already.

But isn’t the point that even that limited service costs a lot, pro rata.

Consider this quality of life business (and apologies on spamming out the thread with an incredible length of post). Firstly, a couple of quotes that lift the veil on the depiction of rural Ireland as Nirvana. Firstly, One-off Housing killed my

Now, Vincent Browne on Munster

Like many Irish, I’ve close family links to rural areas. Both of those articles make sense to me. Now, on the urban experience, this report of research by the ESRI found

Now, I’m really not trying to replace the ‘four legs good, two legs bad’ anti Dublin mantra with a ‘two legs good, four legs bad’. I’m just trying to put some reality into the picture, as this ‘quality of life’ thing frequently requires us to view urban living as akin to the seventh level of hell contrasting with the rich vibrant community life awaiting us in the countryside. Without canonising or demonising either, I think the reality is that even Irish commuting belt living with all its flaws (as the quote above illustrates) actually has an acceptable social life. The one-off house actually seems to be a choice for people who want to escape social life – but frequently mythologised as something else.

So what’s my point? Its this idea almost suggesting that quality of life is a monopoly of the rural. Urban living in Ireland is not so deficient as to make the desire to swap it for an isolated bungalow without safe drinking water. Yet many make that choice. It might help understanding if people who make that choice could explain why they make that choice, as the explanations delivered so far don’t stack up.

Clearly, there’s no obligation on anyone to explain themselves. But, clearly, if we don’t understand their motives they can only expect hostility in response to the costs their choice imposes on the country. Because their actions simply seem screwy.

For years we were asked to subsidise broadband for places as sparsely populated as the North West. Only with the arrival of technologies like wireless has this bleating stopped.


Dublin is the financial centre of the country and generates more than enough wealth to sustain itself.

Indeed. They’re not provided because they’re not commercially viable.

We still have rural dwellers crying about lack of post offices, banks, garda stations, pubs and a multitude of other services that are not viable for sparsely populated areas.

This is clearly nonsense for the good of the country. My solution is to tax people who are not involved in export production and have no tax for those who are.

I should add I have a vested interest. I live in a big feck-off one-off house in the country. I work from home so the heating is on all the time in the winter. I export my services around the world. My current utility bills (all in for electricity and heating) are less than they were when I was living in a two bedroom apartment in Dublin. I also am a Dub.

Or indeed, Dublin’s financial centre is going to bankrupt the country…

Just to make it clear that I’m not a Dub either, but I did live in Dublin prior to departing Ireland’s shores. I grew up in a one off housing and it left me very disillusioned with the practice.

My original reply that seems to have twisted a lot of knickers was with regard to one-off housing. I believe that choosing to build a one off house is a selfish way of living and should be seen as opting out of society. I intended to refer to half acre sites in clusters or on their own away from urban centres which are not on farms. That’s my own belief even having grown up in that environment.

I’m willing to accept what you say at face value. It may well be that you have a fantastically energy efficient home. But I take it you know your experience is not typical. Energy costs of detached homes are higher than apartments. Whatever measures you’ve applied to your house would achieve an even better result at lower unit cost in an apartment block.

That’s really the point - the generality of real Irish experience. Maybe youhave a composting toilet and not a septic tank. But the general move to one-off is causing pollution associated with septic tanks. Maybe you have a far more active social life than you had in Dublin. But the generality of experience is that one-offs are socially isolating while suburbs (despite their planning flaws in the Irish context) have an acceptable social life.

I know you haven’t said this isn’t the case. But you’ll know doubt be aware of this generic view of ‘h, I left the inhuman city for the countryside, its so much better for children’, which actually doesn’t describe current reality at all. My problem is really with the lack of honesty in the discussion - its refreshing to see you use the term ‘big feck-off house’. And maybe that’s all there is to it, and fine if people talk straight about it because at least then we can be realistic.

But this discussion frequently ends up in denial - typically the rural side trying to pretend that they subsidise city living, when the transfer of resources is very obvlously and clearly in the other direction. Now, if we could accept that fact and accept the main reason people opt for one-offs is to get a far bigger house than they could get in a city and don’t care about the isolation or the damage to the environment, at least we’d be addressing the reality of our lives.

Is it fair to say that one-off advocates don’t want to go there because they can anticipate a frank statement of their motivation is unlikely to swim in public debate.

Yes, but much of that wealth is because it happens that many/most national services are centred there. Government, banking, financial, administration etc.
It is generating wealth on behalf of the nation.

If there was no “rest of the country”, the amount of wealth Dublin that supposedly generates for itself and apparently should be allowed to ringfence for itself would be a fraction of what it
is currently.

It, and other urban areas are not as self sufficient and being leeched out of as some people are trying to imply.
The nature of business will always be that money flows into urban areas where the hub business takes places. The money doesn’t start and end in the urban area though.

That’s what urbanisation is.

Dublin is not the only urban centre.

Where does it start? On farms?

People living on half acres are not farmers. They work in urban centres.

I think you are missing the point.
Because money ends up being funnelled into somewhere, it doesn’t necessarily mean it originated there.

The notion of getting services per headline revenue generated is total balls also.
The area around the IFSC should have its streets paved with solid gold, if we take that lark to its ultimate conclusion. It earns billions, does it not and therefore should have amenities to match its earnings?

The people who work in the IFSC don’t live there. I wouldn’t think many of them live in one-off houses though.

Indeed, but what the IFSC is about is European financial institutions setting up here to avail of our low tax rates. You are absolutely right that Dublin isn’t an island. But, more to the point, Ireland isn’t an island when it comes to the economy. We’ve a massive exposure to the rest of the world for goods and services we import and export.

I think that’s why we have to get away from this mindset that Dublin is soaking in wealth from the rest of the country, as if there was a big cake and the East was snaffling a bigger slice. What ultimately determines wealth in Ireland is how much we export - whether an IFSC bank exporting services or a manufacturer exporting goods. Its not about squeezing business out of Dublin. There’s no reason why the regional cities couldn’t pull in more business from abroad. Its not a zero sum game.

I know we’re always with the negatives, but there actually isn’t much wealth generated in rural areas. Primary agriculture only accounts for something like 3% of GDP now. Then there was the building industry, but I guess around here it isn’t necessary to labour the point of what that amounted to.

The main point I wanted to make was that, of its nature, of course the IFSC isn’t about taking money raised in Dublin (or Ireland for that matter) and doing stuff with it. Its about banks in Dublin intermediating between international investors and borrowers in financial products. But for any rural advocates (if that’s a helpful term) are searching for some residual argument for suggesting Dublin is subsidised by households in rural counties that don’t even raise enough tax to fund their local services, then they won’t find it there.

The pattern is simply wealth in the cities going to subsidise rural areas. Again, I’m not suggesting rural dwellers need to wear sackcloth because of this. But what they could do is acknowledge these plain facts. A more common reaction, I’m afraid to say, is to deny this reality and pretend Dublin gets all kinds of largesse at the expense of others. For example, the comments of a Mayo FF TD implicitly suggesting that the Westlink bridge buyout was funded by general taxation when, as we know, its being funded by continued collection of the toll - it has simply been automated.

I know I’m wandering on and on, and another contributor has actually already expressed the point I’m trying to make far more succinctly

Can we start by being honest with each other.

Time to move this to or somewhere more usenet-ish.

Here it’s just pointless.

Okay, I waited 5 pages & bit my lip. But obviously, to quote Popeye, “I’ve had I can stand, & I can’t stands no more !”.

I can’t believe that people contributing on the Pin are advocating the kind of re-settlement policies that I’d associate more with Pol Pot or Stalin; because thats what I’m hearing !

People are suggesting that the state should control where people are allowed to live ?

I also can’t just stand by while self-builders take the rap for all rural pollution, which also seems to be accepted as Holy writ. While obviously there are issues with rural houses causing some pollution, I have never seen data which shows one-off housing to be anything other than a minority contributer.

The majority of rural pollution is cause by, guess what, farms !!

Nitrates, Poorly constructed slurry tanks, field run-off, & blatant disregarding of regulations on spreading slurry. All of these contribute far more to rural pollution that any amount of one-off housing.

Its marvelous that in Ireland of the 21st Century that we’ve decided to introduce Apartheid to our countryside, what will be its slogan “The Countryside for the Cluchies, the city for the Jackeens !” ?

Should I point out that the only reason that there is ANY issue with rural housing is because RURAL DCs have completely failed to provide any alternative to the one-off route. What is so difficult about each county providing a certain number of areas where clusters of houses can be built ? These areas could then be provided with services in a far more efficient way than if the houses were built individually.