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 Brian Cowen's State of the Nation Speech - Now Its Pay-Per-View Government

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PostSubject: Re: Brian Cowen's State of the Nation Speech - Now Its Pay-Per-View Government   Tue Aug 12, 2008 6:58 pm

unaligned wrote:
EvotingMachine0197 wrote:
unaligned wrote:
There would have been no sense in any party trying to fight the election on the economy. At the time, the economic climate did not look nearly as unstable and any party who raised fears about the economy would have been battered as recession seekers and pessimists by the Fianna Fail communications machine. Irish elections aren't fought on issues anyway. For instance, 85% of front page content across the three broadsheet newspapers were unrelated to policy content (source: How Ireland Voted 2007).

I don't fully agree with that UA. There is a difference between nay-saying pessimism and exposing lies. And I think big chunks of the electorate know the difference.

Well thats a fair point yeah. The opposition parties chose to fight the election on the basis of the governments figures. This allowed them to put forward their own set of policy initiatives which meant that questioning the governments figures equated to rubbishing the viability of their own policies. Had they fought the election (as you suggest) on the theme of exposing lies then it could have been a very different story. I stand corrected!

I remember listening to a FG politician being interviewed on Morning Ireland before the election and pressed on just this question. There was a hesitation before he went on to evade the issue of the urgent need for economic adjustment (which was well known and discussed at the time) and to criticise FF for not proposing to spend enough. It was infuriating to listen to. I think it was cowardly and unprincipled and they knew it, and did it anyway. Why should voters put any more confidence in them than in FF?

I'm just reading an Oxfam find, "Managing Ireland's Future 2005-2020" the product of the MacGill Summer School of 2005. It provides a snap shot of what all the parties were saying. The fact that Ireland was losing manufacturing employment and was seriously losing competitivity was widely discussed. Politicians buried it because it wasn't a vote winner. All parties went into a wish list election mode. I also think the ESRI went off the boil in the 2000s, with all their talk of soft landings. George Lee, for all he may be mocked, had it right.

Btw Ard Taoiseach, you'll be relieved to know that I didn't say that SF's alternative economic strategy made any sense, just that they had one.
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PostSubject: Re: Brian Cowen's State of the Nation Speech - Now Its Pay-Per-View Government   Tue Aug 12, 2008 7:51 pm

cactus flower wrote:
youngdan wrote:
Good morning, my name is Magic Arse.......

Kerr..ching! He's raiding the Pension Fund.

This raiding of the pension fund concept is bizzarre.

First FG were for it, and FF were against it calling them irresponsible.

Now FF are for something similar (?) in using the public pension provisions (different from pension fund?) in their accounts to allow them to borrow more. And guess what, Fine Gael are against this as irresponsible!

While raiding the pension fund may be a "moral hazard" Smile (total abuse of a term of art but sure, hey it's a nonsense concept anyway!) or show a lack of discipline, it does seem a bit mental to be paying interest to borrow money while putting savings into a fund that likely won't generate a return commensurate with the interest you are paying on the borrowings.

Anyway, the whole thing is starting to look like something out of Yes Minister - the concepts are confused and the politicians are being jesuitical, changing their position at the drop of a hat.


Last edited by Zhou_Enlai on Tue Aug 12, 2008 7:58 pm; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: Brian Cowen's State of the Nation Speech - Now Its Pay-Per-View Government   Tue Aug 12, 2008 7:55 pm

Where's youngdan?
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PostSubject: Re: Brian Cowen's State of the Nation Speech - Now Its Pay-Per-View Government   Tue Aug 12, 2008 10:46 pm

cactus flower wrote:


Btw Ard Taoiseach, you'll be relieved to know that I didn't say that SF's alternative economic strategy made any sense, just that they had one.

Well, whatever "strategy" they have, it won't do any good for Ireland. They don't have the first clue of how to manage a modern, market-led, small, open economy. Their thinking is Marxist and belongs in a history book. Free trade, low taxes, a culture of entrepreneurialism, export-led growth and a good legal environment will see this country consistently right.
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PostSubject: Re: Brian Cowen's State of the Nation Speech - Now Its Pay-Per-View Government   Tue Aug 12, 2008 11:08 pm

Whereas there is no sign of them having a clue economically, the description of SF as Marxist is an undeserved complement.
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PostSubject: Re: Brian Cowen's State of the Nation Speech - Now Its Pay-Per-View Government   Tue Aug 12, 2008 11:10 pm

cactus flower wrote:
Where's youngdan?
He's Euro-trash bashing on another thread.....

Now, Brian Lenihan is reported on the front of the Indo today as going for the HANG THE RICH solution to the budget crisis and the paydeals. Hanging the public rich who give themselves hefty pay rises is one thing but the private rich ..

Quote :
FINANCE Minister Brian Lenihan last night warned employers they will have to be prepared to sacrifice profits if they want to revive the collapsed pay talks.

Mr Lenihan finally broke his silence on the breakdown of the crucial negotiations and said workers could not be expected to shoulder the burden of the economic downturn alone.

In an interview with the Irish Independent, the minister said business owners, executives and managers will have to take an equal share of the pain when negotiations for a national pay agreement resume.

"One of the points that has come across in my discussions with other European finance ministers is the widespread concern about the very high levels of profit-taking and self-reward that is taking place at the higher echelons of the private sector," he said.

..wouldn't there be a risk of business being killed? After all, Michael O'Leary does pay Bertie's social welfare. Maybe it's a misprint and "public sector" was what was intended ??

Whoever he's talking about he runs the risk of sounding like the German ambassador who tore us to shreds last year.

Quote :
"I share that view. It wouldn't do for employers to expect all the restraint to be on the part of the unions or the workers. They have to lead by example -- it must be demonstrable, and it must be verifiable."

It's handy that the Government has already made a good example to profiteering employers by giving up the pay rises that they were considered to be entitled to by an independent committee of well-paid consultants last year:

Quote :
Mr Lenihan said the Government had shown an example by voluntarily giving up pay awards made last year by the review group on higher level remuneration.

"We did it without linkage to anything else, and as a gesture of good faith. I would like to see that kind of example being followed, especially for the times we are in."

The minister said there had to be sacrifice and a shared commitment to restoring the competitiveness and effectiveness of the economy, especially in terms of maintaining employment and creating future jobs. This had to be seen "right across the board".

The partnership approach had meant a parity of esteem between the social partners from its early years and he did not wish to see this eroded, he said.

"Social partnership has served Ireland very well in the past, and it has brought a track record of progress over 21 years. I am very much of the belief that it is not at an end, and that it can serve us just as well into the future, although economic conditions are now more difficult," Mr Lenihan added.

"The Taoiseach has asked all sides to reflect on the situation during this month, and I too would ask all sides to consider what could be lost. Partnership is something that will have to be achieved again in some form, and the well-paid will, I think, have to face up to their responsibilities."

Mr Lenihan said he made much the same point when addressing the social partners at an early stage of their negotiations.

The same article also talks about an inflationary package that may be getting introduced without raising taxes; we're told they're studying inflation - it's useful to know the enemy sometimes...

Quote :
Meanwhile, sources have clarified that a committee made up of officials from three Government departments, which is currently studying inflation, was not set up as a consequence or 'patch' following the collapse of the talks, but always existed under the structure of the 'Towards 2016' agreement.

Union sources have already said a Government anti-inflation package would not be sufficient to get them to swallow unpalatable medicine on pay which is likely to be prescribed again by the employers' side when the talks reconvene next month.

Tanaiste Mary Coughlan last week said an anti-inflation package was more important to the Government than the idea of raising taxes in the Budget to meet deep Government revenue shortfalls for this year and next.

However, Government sources yesterday said it was too early to say that any specific anti-inflation package was in preparation as a precursor to any resumed dialogue. A spokesman said officials were continuing to liaise on the issue.
INDO


http://www.village.ie/magazine/edition/Out-of-their-depth/
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PostSubject: Re: Brian Cowen's State of the Nation Speech - Now Its Pay-Per-View Government   Tue Aug 12, 2008 11:27 pm

A simple solution for Lenihan, if he thinks the upper echelons are rewarding themselves too much, is to undo some of the tax cuts that benefitted the higher paid and reduce tax on the lower paid.

The option he is suggesting is most likely to result in job losses, and to give inflation a nice boost.
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PostSubject: Re: Brian Cowen's State of the Nation Speech - Now Its Pay-Per-View Government   Wed Aug 13, 2008 12:13 am

A state of the union, sorry mean state of the nation, address will be soooo presidential, and probably have the same affect. Ziltch. Nada. Zero caloric content. Given that he feels the necessity to finally proclaim on the state of the economy formally is, in and of itself, an indication that things will not be so good in the coming years. No panic, but why has there been such a long interval between the nation's economic experiences on the ground and the government's recognition of the problems? Is the government hoping that the GE promises and prognastications by FF will be largely forgotten and the Plebs won't be able to add two and two together? How much of the speech will be along the lines of: "external factors, of which we have no control, have impacted on the tiger. We are well positioned to deal with the forecoming difficulties - yadda, yadda, yawn"? How many real policies, if any, will be announced? How many of these policies should have be initiated and carried through during the invtervening decade anyway? Why isn't the Finance Minister addressing the issues?

I won't be listening to the speech. A few bullet points, cutting out the Irish media "noise" and dreadful waffle, will suffice to see what, if any meat, is delivered from the oration. No doubt FF's opinion poll ratings will improve.
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PostSubject: Re: Brian Cowen's State of the Nation Speech - Now Its Pay-Per-View Government   Wed Aug 13, 2008 1:55 am

I am stuck for time and must ration the bashing. How can I get to the Irish donkeys when we have a senile fool running for President who says "we are all Georgians now". Then Georgian donkeys and European donkeys.

There is no hope for Ireland. They got rid of McDowell because they are not able to handle the truth
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PostSubject: Re: Brian Cowen's State of the Nation Speech - Now Its Pay-Per-View Government   Wed Aug 13, 2008 2:08 am

He will begin with the words "Good evening". He will then tell us how much trouble the country is in. He will then show us that he knows how to save the country from the mess we are in by shining a beacon into the sky that makes the shape of a giant bat on the clouds above us. When Bruce Wayne fails to appear he will fall back on plan B. He will buy Manchester City with the remaining money the country has.
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PostSubject: Re: Brian Cowen's State of the Nation Speech - Now Its Pay-Per-View Government   Wed Aug 13, 2008 2:36 am

Do you think he knows he is known elsewhere as Magic Arse?
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PostSubject: Re: Brian Cowen's State of the Nation Speech - Now Its Pay-Per-View Government   Wed Aug 13, 2008 2:43 am

anmajornarthainig wrote:
He will begin with the words "Good evening". He will then tell us how much trouble the country is in. He will then show us that he knows how to save the country from the mess we are in by shining a beacon into the sky that makes the shape of a giant bat on the clouds above us. When Bruce Wayne fails to appear he will fall back on plan B. He will buy Manchester City with the remaining money the country has.

Show us ? How? I sincerely hope youngdan's nickname does not come to pass. Icky pun aside.
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PostSubject: Re: Brian Cowen's State of the Nation Speech - Now Its Pay-Per-View Government   Wed Aug 13, 2008 2:47 am

No, all he will do is press a button. He will do it authoritively though
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PostSubject: Re: Brian Cowen's State of the Nation Speech - Now Its Pay-Per-View Government   Wed Aug 13, 2008 2:56 am

Well, IMO, he had his chance to be authoritive when he was director of elections, Minister of Finance, Tanaiste , and well seated to upend that other clown. He didn't do it. Any of it.

He did go on the radio and play to the electorate for votes.

I don't care what he says. No respect in - No respect out.
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PostSubject: Re: Brian Cowen's State of the Nation Speech - Now Its Pay-Per-View Government   Wed Aug 13, 2008 3:40 am

EvotingMachine0197 wrote:
Well, IMO, he had his chance to be authoritive when he was director of elections, Minister of Finance, Tanaiste , and well seated to upend that other clown. He didn't do it. Any of it.

He did go on the radio and play to the electorate for votes.

I don't care what he says. No respect in - No respect out.

I`ve the same level of respect for himself and Ahern as you`d have yourself. I`m praying he hands over control to the guy in the flying rodent costume. It`s our best hope.
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PostSubject: Re: Brian Cowen's State of the Nation Speech - Now Its Pay-Per-View Government   Wed Aug 13, 2008 3:42 am

anmajornarthainig wrote:
EvotingMachine0197 wrote:
Well, IMO, he had his chance to be authoritive when he was director of elections, Minister of Finance, Tanaiste , and well seated to upend that other clown. He didn't do it. Any of it.

He did go on the radio and play to the electorate for votes.

I don't care what he says. No respect in - No respect out.

I`ve the same level of respect for himself and Ahern as you`d have yourself. I`m praying he hands over control to the guy in the flying rodent costume. It`s our best hope.

Indeed. Wayne Corp would be able to bail out all distressed developers, exposed exporters and baleful banks.
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PostSubject: Re: Brian Cowen's State of the Nation Speech - Now Its Pay-Per-View Government   Wed Aug 13, 2008 3:45 am

Ard-Taoiseach wrote:
anmajornarthainig wrote:
EvotingMachine0197 wrote:
Well, IMO, he had his chance to be authoritive when he was director of elections, Minister of Finance, Tanaiste , and well seated to upend that other clown. He didn't do it. Any of it.

He did go on the radio and play to the electorate for votes.

I don't care what he says. No respect in - No respect out.

I`ve the same level of respect for himself and Ahern as you`d have yourself. I`m praying he hands over control to the guy in the flying rodent costume. It`s our best hope.

Indeed. Wayne Corp would be able to bail out all distressed developers, exposed exporters and baleful banks.

True and there`s a family tradition of charity there as well. His oul`fella used to help people out a lot during the last recession.
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PostSubject: Re: Brian Cowen's State of the Nation Speech - Now Its Pay-Per-View Government   Wed Aug 13, 2008 3:46 am

anmajornarthainig wrote:
Ard-Taoiseach wrote:
anmajornarthainig wrote:
EvotingMachine0197 wrote:
Well, IMO, he had his chance to be authoritive when he was director of elections, Minister of Finance, Tanaiste , and well seated to upend that other clown. He didn't do it. Any of it.

He did go on the radio and play to the electorate for votes.

I don't care what he says. No respect in - No respect out.

I`ve the same level of respect for himself and Ahern as you`d have yourself. I`m praying he hands over control to the guy in the flying rodent costume. It`s our best hope.

Indeed. Wayne Corp would be able to bail out all distressed developers, exposed exporters and baleful banks.

True and there`s a family tradition of charity there as well. His oul`fella used to help people out a lot during the last recession.

Which is useful. Plus we can be the centre of a new tech boom when they move their R&D facilities to Ireland. We'd be in clover with that sort of name setting up shop here.
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PostSubject: Re: Brian Cowen's State of the Nation Speech - Now Its Pay-Per-View Government   Wed Aug 13, 2008 3:52 am

Imagine what the Sunday Independent would make of a masked guy beating the shit out of criminals. They`d be able to dust down all their old headings about the Provos. Within the week they`d have him connected to international terrorism, drug dealing, cattle smuggling, porn, computer hacking, global warming, traffic congestion.
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PostSubject: Re: Brian Cowen's State of the Nation Speech - Now Its Pay-Per-View Government   Wed Aug 13, 2008 3:54 am

anmajornarthainig wrote:
Imagine what the Sunday Independent would make of a masked guy beating the shit out of criminals. They`d be able to dust down all their old headings about the Provos. Within the week they`d have him connected to international terrorism, drug dealing, cattle smuggling, porn, computer hacking, global warming, traffic congestion.

Indeed. We'd have to set up another couple of tribunals to deal with all those allegations. Now that Mahon and Moriarity are finishing up, SCs up and down the land are quaking at the prospect of receiving their P45s. We need replacement tribunals to keep the whole industry afloat. Batman saves us again!
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PostSubject: Re: Brian Cowen's State of the Nation Speech - Now Its Pay-Per-View Government   Wed Aug 13, 2008 7:13 am

I do not think the present crew are capable of solving anything. They have sat on the problem for 6 months in fear. The size of the problem does not seem to be grasped by the man on the street. The major parties have sold the country down the drain and are laughing at the people. Ahern is in Montrose when he should be in Mountjoy.
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PostSubject: Re: Brian Cowen's State of the Nation Speech - Now Its Pay-Per-View Government   Wed Aug 13, 2008 12:52 pm

youngdan wrote:
I do not think the present crew are capable of solving anything. They have sat on the problem for 6 months in fear. The size of the problem does not seem to be grasped by the man on the street. The major parties have sold the country down the drain and are laughing at the people. Ahern is in Montrose when he should be in Mountjoy.

The one thing they are good at is playing the voters. Interesting to see Lenihan lean on the employers yesterday - the hand that fed him and all. Suddenly it is the greedy bosses (in reality broken by FF policies and trying to find the money to pay staff) who are the villains of the piece and must pay.
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PostSubject: Re: Brian Cowen's State of the Nation Speech - Now Its Pay-Per-View Government   Wed Aug 13, 2008 4:11 pm

cactus flower wrote:
youngdan wrote:
I do not think the present crew are capable of solving anything. They have sat on the problem for 6 months in fear. The size of the problem does not seem to be grasped by the man on the street. The major parties have sold the country down the drain and are laughing at the people. Ahern is in Montrose when he should be in Mountjoy.

The one thing they are good at is playing the voters. Interesting to see Lenihan lean on the employers yesterday - the hand that fed him and all. Suddenly it is the greedy bosses (in reality broken by FF policies and trying to find the money to pay staff) who are the villains of the piece and must pay.

Yes, it appears that Brian has been on the blower to CORI. I expect that there will be numerous announcements and speeches like this one in an attempt to shore up FF working-class credentials. I would not be surprised in the least should Mary Harney be pushed off the stage around the time of his state of the nation address.
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PostSubject: Re: Brian Cowen's State of the Nation Speech - Now Its Pay-Per-View Government   Mon Sep 22, 2008 1:52 pm

http://www.finfacts.com/irishfinancenews/article_1014623.shtml

The emergency budget is coming up on October 14th. I suppose the State of the Nation address should be delivered shortly.

Any more advice, serious or not so serious, for the Taoiseach and the Minister for Finance?
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PostSubject: Re: Brian Cowen's State of the Nation Speech - Now Its Pay-Per-View Government   Mon Sep 22, 2008 2:33 pm

cactus flower wrote:
http://www.finfacts.com/irishfinancenews/article_1014623.shtml

The emergency budget is coming up on October 14th. I suppose the State of the Nation address should be delivered shortly.

Any more advice, serious or not so serious, for the Taoiseach and the Minister for Finance?

Actually, yes, I think they need to do some serious thinking about how to restore confidence in the banking sector. The 100K deposit guarantee was a good start and should hopefully hook some foreign capital along the way, since now only Italy has a higher guarantee.

The problem is, I don't see that as being enough to hold off a bank run in the current climate, if another UK or US giant goes down. I know Lenihan has pretty much said the Govt will back the banks regardless, but how about some preventive measures??

The banks could be made to up their capitalisations by releasing rights issues to the market, to be bought up by the Pensions Reserve fund, and then flogged at a huge profit in a few years time when everyone is back on the road. Confidence in our banks restored... and maybe the taxpayer even makes a profit.... and such a gesture by the Govt would bring the investors back in....perhaps the banks are a better place for intervention than the property market??

Yeah, I know they've made decisions that totally suck, and the profits they've made recently are disgusting, along with the bonuses etc

BUT, we'd be sunk without 'em
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