Irish people owe nothing to banks & billionaires

And on the same topic a letter from an Indo reader… … 55761.html

Too true…
“Do Irish people realise just how good they have had it for so long? To put some things in perspective, nobody in Germany or The Netherlands earns nearly as much as their equivalents in Ireland are paid.”

It would be very interestign to compare the % of their salary that people actually take home in other countries with Ireland. As a single person in France I take home 63% of all earned. Anyone else got numbers for comparison. I remeber in Germany it was closer to 50%. Someone has to pay for the services but I think a lot of people in Ireland are losing sight of this fact.

Jim Bunning, the republican senator from Kentucky and Joe Higgins, the socialist MEP from Dublin, coming from opposite directions arrive at the same conclusion. :smiley:

I’d like to see a comparison of different countries regarding total standard of living and different jobs- not just take home pay. Do people in Germany live to a worse standard than us? I doubt it. Rent, health, fuel, electricity, broadband/phone costs,VAT, clothes, food, education etc. should all be taken into consideration. My family have an above average income but we do not live the high life with holidays abroad, steak dinners or fancy restaurants. We are living within our means with just enough to cover the tax increases next year.

Now we cannot afford to pay for services; one fifth of our taxes are being “Stolen” from us now by incompetent bankers etc.

I wonder if we knew the statistic would my family be able to live to just as high a standard in Germany doing the same jobs? What does “high” mean anyway? Having the luxury of paying more for a haircut?


I think everything in Ireland goes back to the fact that we had a monumental boom that led to rediculous levesl of inflation in just about the price of everything. Now that there is no money to pay for it we are snookered. Until someone presses the reset button it will remain like that.
I suppose this is what annoys me most about the arrogance of cowen in his assertions that ‘it just happened’…horrendous manaagement of the country has us where we are but until there is an accetpance of this fact from our so called leaders we will not move on and everyone will continue to believe that 2005/6/7 is the norm.

In saying that I do think that many people in Ireland beelive in a societyirty where everyone is entitled to a car or two, a house, a few holidays and a few nights on the beer and dont see them as luxuries.

I don’t think that having a house is a luxury!
How do you maintain that?

Surely a house being a place of shelter is a basic need. A common requirement of the human animal to be able to find a place of repose and safety from the environment?

I was referrring more to the collective than the individual. OF course a roof over your head isnt a luxury…
6 rooves over your head however… :nin

Well back to comparison of standards of living; we’re renting a small 3 bed house, we’ve a 10 year old car, other half goes out once a week for 2 pints(me once a year!), take out every 2 weeks, holiday in kerry once a year. Hardly extravagant. Bet my counterpart in Germany enjoys similar if not better.

Most people actually believe what those in power say and take the spin put on that by mainstream media equally seriously. The vast majority of society subscribes to the dominant narrative and that narrative is generated by people with power. In Ireland you could count opinion formers in the dozens. When that cohort is completely off the rails you are in trouble and when a nod and wink culture of corruption is widespread that system will break down, as it has in Ireland. When a society privileges certain forms of behaviour then people will behave that way. If you get rewarded (or think you are) by buying apartments and you are encouraged to do it then its no surprise that lots of people will buy apartments. Yes they are responsible themselves but its equally the case that society and its political or economic policy invited them to and gave the decision the imprimatur of being a good thing to do.

Except for those who took out loans… they owe something to the banks, right? Or is it only the Irish banks they don’t owe something to? Or to all banks? :confused:

Absolutley, this is my point.
There are parties out there including the banks and government who are implying it is the fault of the irish people themselves,
and this is only true to a very small degree.
This Government ( and the opposition parties due to their lack of real opposition and raising of concerns) failed in it’s most primary responsibility as guide and shepherd of the nation.
This becomes clearer with every passing day and will continue to do so.
This government has led it’s flock into dangerous fields and has basically abandoned all responsibilities for its actions.
HOWEVER, I believe that sometimes opportunities can present themselves in the most trying of times, and I believe that the people of this nation can reject this government and its policies, and rise to the challenge ahead.

I’m not saying that people don’t owe money to banks. Its a comment about how Ireland got into the situation whereby financial illiterates were borrowing many hundreds of thousands or millions of euro on a whim and ploughing the money into high risk schemes or directly into conspicuous consumption. But in terms of responsibility the role of the state is to guarantee stability and that includes enforcing contracts and regulating markets so that they don’t collapse and that they serve the needs of society. Public policy in Ireland guaranteed failure in this regard, people can choose to blame borrowers or banks or the media or all of them but at its root this would not have happened had our political leadership done their job.

+1 Absolutley
And so the question arises “why?”
Once the motives are clarified, and the “hows” laid bare, thats when things are going to start getting interesting.
But first, lets give them a bit more rope to hang themselves,
while we try to enjoy the holiday season as much as possible with friends and loved ones.
After all, Januarys only a few weeks away.


You could probably post this response in any of the threads. The ultimate root of all of the problems is the Irish mentality (as a generalisation of course – there are exceptions). I think I have previously mentioned words such as denialism, fantasism, venality, mendaciousness, etc. There is a general lack of understanding, or even worse an attitude of non-caring and non-responsibility, of and for the consequences of actions. There is a lack of that which normally binds a society together – a sense of the common good.
Alas, I do not see this changing in our lifetime. Hence nothing will change and the cycle will be repeated over and over.

With the savage cuts being made at the moment, could we not do that anyway? (Assuming we no longer have 20%+ of tax take going to debt servicing.)

How do the numbers stack up?

I mean, if it’s savage cuts to balance the budget after a default or savage cuts to service debt for 20 years with no default, then I know which I’d rather choose.

And the NPRF could be used for the first couple of years to prop things up.

The cuts/tax raises required are of the order of 20-25bn in a year.

If those cuts/raises were implemented, there wouldn’t be any necessity to default on sovereign debt… mind you, rolling over existing debt might be tricky.

It seems to me that the worst case is a drawn out process. This is what we’ve been doing for the last three years and and seems to be the plan for the forseeable future.

During the boom. It would have being cheaper going abroad than going to Kerry.

The interest payments on the debt would still not cover the current budget deficit.
Liquidating the NPRF might just see us through one year.

Let’s say we suddenly default officially on Jan 1 2011, that kicks off a crisis in the rest of the EZ and Britain. It cuts us off from any further borrowing so we run down any reserves within 2 to 3 months. After three months public sector workers will not get paid unless there is money in the coffers, they may be furloughed and issued with scrip/IOUs like in California (if they are lucky), and you could also see a situation like happens in Sardinia or in Russia during the collapse of the 90s where people don;t get paid for months on end. Social welfare and pensions would also run out too and those who are least politically connected will get nothing. Lots of welfare programs get cancelled. Tax revenue would also continue to fall in that scenario and even the money saved on not paying the interest on the debt would not balance the budget.

There would be capital controls to stop any more money leaving the country, and the rate of outward migration would pick up, however, there would be a less than favourable reception from the public in Britain and Germany towards economic refugees, especially when they have to deal with the crisis attributed to us. Euros with Irish serial numbers on them would increasingly get rejected abroad as the expectation would be that we would leave the Euro for our own currency and these notes would loose value rapidly. The Euro would disapear over the course of the next 18 months anyway in many countries.

Security would break down rapidly, the numbers of Gardai and army are tiny in this country and if they are getting irregular wages, they they will do like happened in Eastern Europe and Russia and supplement their income though other means. People have to eat, with no income coming in they will have to steal or barter, this won’t be an option for everyone and old people who are dependent on the state pension will bear the brunt of crime and lack of resources to sustain them.

That’s only part of the mad-max scenario. All the mainstream parties and senior echelons of the civil service who have given any thought to default fully realise what will happen to them if they default, so they would rather preserve the status quo as long as possible. The more corrupt will resort to selling state companies and resources in exchange for kickbacks and seats on the boards of new companies for themselves or family members.

We are going to default, the questions now are when and will it be done in a disorderly manner or not!

A house swap is free and that is what we did the last couple of years. I just feel sorry for those on less money than us - life is/will be soon very painful for most.

long time lurker - 2+ years…first time ive felt the need to post +1 !!