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 FAS management Fiasco - Employee Admits €1m Fraud

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PostSubject: FAS management Fiasco - Employee Admits €1m Fraud   Sat Nov 29, 2008 2:57 pm

tags: Mary Harney's Hairdo - Space Cadets



I'm way behind the pack on this one. It was a busy week, Mr. Ganley got more than his fair share of it and I relied on RTE news reporting - which I may say get progressively weaker and less informative. I'm only now really getting to look at it.

I feel frustrated that so many people find it acceptable that someone on Harney's salary could not afford her own hairdressing. I am still outraged that we paid tens of thousands a year for Bertie Aherne to have his face painted. I would like to know if Harney ever pays for her own hairdressing and if we are still painting Bertie at public expense. As well as the payout of expenses for the trip, there is the issue of whether it was a genuine "public interest" visit or essentially a free holiday.

John Walshe and Senan Molloney reported in the Independent here:

http://www.independent.ie/national-news/harney-the-fas-trip-and-the-410-hairdo-1554731.html

Quote :
HEALTH Minister Mary Harney was one of two women who paid a total of $410 for beauty treatments at the taxpayers' expense during a controversial FAS trip to Florida, the Irish Independent can reveal. The minister stayed at the Radisson Hotel, in Cocoa Beach, where two beauty therapists from the Solutions Salon visited her daily to do her hair.
The other person who benefited -- to a lesser extent -- was Noirin Molloy, wife of former director general of FAS Rody Molloy, who has stepped down because of the controversy over the US trip. The $410 bill was paid for by a platinum credit card belonging to the FAS director of public affairs Greg Craig, who is currently on official sick leave.
There is a photo of one of the event's, and hair does here: NASA Kennedy Centre EVENT

Am I dreaming, or did Mary Harney repeatedly say towards the end of the week that she did not have her personal grooming paid for at public expense?

The Government jet was used for the trip: this is a report from 2003 that gives an idea of what Government Jet travel entails:

Quote :
"MINISTERS are guzzling their way through hundreds of euro worth of food and drink every time they fly on the government jet. Fine wines, VIP meals, specialist chocolates and designer scents are setting the taxpayer back almost EUR100,000 a year - despite Ministers spending less than 400 hours in the sky. Bills for food alone on board the jet are running at more than EUR5,000 a month and according to sources only the best will do for high flying Ministers.

Figures obtained under the Freedom of Information Act have uncovered the massive bills being run up for comforts on board the luxury Gulf Stream.
Last year food costs came in at over EUR60,000 while Ministers guzzled over EUR6,544.51 bar bills along with EUR11,711.73 in unspecified goods from Musgraves.
Quote :
Three bills for specialist chocolates bought in from a County Mayo distributor for almost EUR1,000 were received for the jet in the first two months of the year. On one trip to Paris when the jet touched down for just over five hours it managed to clock up a EUR919.30 catering bill. In Seville on August 17, the jet clocked up a bill for EUR1,255.92 which included EUR455.58 for catering and EUR25 for newspapers...

And to make sure that our Ministers are smelling their very best when they step off the plane, the taxpayer has made sure their favourite scents are to hand on board. Last year a massive EUR1,358.25 was spent on creams, after shaves, perfumes and shower requisites for Ministers despite the fact they spent just 386 hours in the sky all year.

Handmade chocolates eaten on the jet cost a total of EUR1,264.80. Tanaiste Mary Harney is believed to like them. Bewley's Coffee costing EUR2,255.83 was consumed on the jet along with EUR944.61 worth of milk. Flight stewards to tend to our Ministers' every need cost EUR3,913.73 while a total of EUR3,664.77 was spent on hygiene and towels"
(Report by Nichola Tallant of the Sunday Mirror).

Here are some details of what FAS was doing in Florida - it is the launch of a Primary Schools project that involved sending 15 children from across Ireland for a one-week "adventure camp" in "The Florida Space Academy".
Quote :
"I understand they will be part of a Space Mission team, learn how to build air rockets, launch their own weather balloons and find out first hand about the environment and wildlife of Florida while learning solutions and new approaches to everyday challenges"
- Michael O'Mairtin.
It also gives details of 6 month apprenticeships for small numbers in private firms in Florida or in the Florida Institute of Technology. None of the students mentioned had a placement with NASA.

http://www.entemp.ie/press/2004/20041021a.htm - Government Press Release 2004

Quote :
"The Primary Project is just one of a number of projects developed by FAS under the Science Challenge initiative. To-date over 30 Irish students have participated in projects since 2003 with the Florida Space Authority and Kennedy Space Centre, from primary school pupils to third level graduates. The links that have been established with the Florida Space Authority by FAS have opened up an extensive array of opportunities for Ireland in the Science and Technology sectors. Currently a team of ten are participating on the FAS Science Challenge Internship programme with private industry and universities in the United States."

"Ten students (5 apprentices and 5 graduates) will participate on the programme of six months duration. They are assigned specific projects with private companies and industry which are related to their skills." There were also 11 apprentices who were sponsored by their employers for 6 month apprenticeship modules in US firms in Florida.

This is a positive report on the programme quoting a former student from 2004. It does not mention if he met Mary Harney. http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/ireland/2008/1129/1227910354309.html

Here are some details on Ministerial Travel connected to the project:

Quote :
"Between 2004 and 2007 three senior ministers and two ministers of state travelled to ceremonies associated with the Fás Science Challenge project, which has an annual budget of €1.5 million. The chairman of the Dáil Public Accounts Committee Bernard Allen commented that Florida "must be a very attractive place to go" after hearing of the extent of the ministerial travel.

Christy Cooney, assistant director general of Fás, said Minister for Health Mary Harney had visited the project, as had Micheál Martin when he was minister for enterprise, trade and employment. Former minister for labour affairs Tony Killeen had also gone, as had Mary Hanafin when she was minister for education, and Michael Ahern, when he was minister for innovative policy at the department of enterprise, trade and employment.

Ms Harney travelled to Florida on the Government jet along with a party of seven others in July 2004. Among her group was her husband, the then chairman of Fás, Brian Geoghegan; the former director general of Fás, Rody Molloy, and his wife; the then secretary general of the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment, Paul Haran, and his wife; and Ms Harney's press secretary and her private secretary.
Quote :
The PAC hearing was told that the Government jet costs about €7,000 an hour to fly. A flight to Florida would take eight to 10 hours. Mr Cooney told the PAC yesterday that Fás had also booked first class tickets, at €4,824 each, for the party of eight as a contingency against the Government jet not being available.
In relation to the trips, both the Department of Enterprise and FAS have been asked for and failed to provide a full account of Government and official trips connected with the programme.
http://www.irishexaminer.com/irishexaminer/pages/story.aspx-qqqg=ireland-qqqm=ireland-qqqa=ireland-qqqid=78823-qqqx=1.asp

Locke, on P.ie, said:

Quote :
One thing that disturbs me in all this is that there was some implication that it was being done for scientific reasons and that they were visiting NASA. All NASA has in Florida is a launch centre and a museum. It is neither headquartered there (HQ is Washington DC) nor is significant reasearch done there (Research facilities in New York, Ohio, California, Maryland and Virginia).

The question of which lucky students got to go on these assignments could also be asked. One of them was a daughter of President Mary McAleese. Some apprentices were sponsored by their employers and I assume were there on merit. How were the 15 primary school students picked? Underprivileged students from Limerick, perhaps, where that year a number were excluded from starting secondary school because there weren't enough places?

Quote :
Outrage at McAleese girl's use of garda car
Sunday March 12 2006 LARA BRADLEY EXCLUSIVE
HIGHLY trained gardai are routinely being used to run domestic errands for Government ministers and the President as well as acting as a taxi service for their family members, the Sunday Independent can reveal.
The Independent gives a good account here of how rody molloy justified the expenditure on trips to the States for himself, his wife, and politicians:
http://www.independent.ie/national-news/rodys-rationale-molloys-explanations-for-expenses-during-pat-kenny-interview-1551831.html

Rody said:
Quote :
NASA is a major US government agency. To develop relationships with them, given that we are not American citizens, is not easy. We know there is a number of other countries who have tried to copy the programmes we have developed with NASA."
The NASA line has also come from the Department of Enterprise and from Hanafin and O'Mairtin, in relation to their Florida trips:

Clom Keenan and Patsy McGarry in the Times report Mary Harney as also claiming the project was with NASA. Some details of her trip are also given, including a family vist.
http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/ireland/2008/1129/1227910354315.html

Saturday, November 29, 2008
By Seán McCárthaigh - Irish Examiner
Quote :
"TWO Government ministers have defended their controversial visits to the US in recent years as guests of Fás amid growing controversy over expenditure of taxpayers’ money by the state employment agency. Health Minister Mary Harney and Social and Family Affairs Minister Mary Hanafin yesterday insisted there was nothing improper about their visits to Florida to inspect relationships built up with organisations like the NASA space agency as part of the Fás Science Challenge project."
None of the Irish students were placed with NASA and NASA is not based in Florida. Was Molloy, the Department or the Ministers for some reason trying to misprepresent the case, or could it be that they did not know anything about the programme bar its location?
Quote :
A Fas credit card was used to pay $942.53 for Rody Molloy to play a three-ball golf match at the Orlando Florida Grand Cypress Resort Golf club in January 2005.
http://www.hq.nasa.gov/
http://www.kennedyspacecenter.com/

Also last week, a report that the meals allowance for FAS trainees is 80 cent a day, and this:

Quote :
CUTBACKS: THE TRADE union Siptu has said that 46 Fás instructors and six general staff on temporary contracts are to be let go without compensation.
It said the cutbacks were part of a plan by the State training agency to deliver savings of 3 per cent in its wage bill to meet the Government's public sector targets.The union said the staff concerned learned that their jobs were to go on the same day that they learned through media reports that the organisation's former director general was likely to receive a golden handshake worth at least €300,000. Siptu said the staff concerned earned between €27,000 and €51,000. It said they were told they would be let go in December, but following representations by the union, they were being allowed to remain in their jobs until after Christmas.
From what I've read of recessions, the crucial factor in how well, or otherwise, a state can get itself out when any upturn comes, is the level of training and education of its population.

In many countries, politicians and public servants go to jail for much, much, less.

- I would like to know the total number of students who have participated in the scheme, who they were and how were they selected.

- I would like to know the full details of the reasons for, and the itinerary of, each trip.
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PostSubject: Re: FAS management Fiasco - Employee Admits €1m Fraud   Sat Nov 29, 2008 4:51 pm

While I agree this kind of state funded self indlugence is unacceptable, I think the fuss over Mary Harney's involvement only serves to trivialise the very important issue of (what seems to be) systematic misuse of public funds at FAS.
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PostSubject: Re: FAS management Fiasco - Employee Admits €1m Fraud   Sat Nov 29, 2008 5:12 pm

I'm not sure that I agree, AfricanDave. This kind of leeching off the public purse is endemic. If one person in FAS is found to have misused public funds in a crooked fashion, I would say that is not so usual in the Irish public services as it was twenty years ago, as there are requirements for open tendering now.

There is an issue here of whether we even have the means of investigating half of what goes on in State Agencies:

The OECD Report Ireland - Towards an Integrated Public Service "

"highlights a development of the public service over the last decade that has evolved in an uncoordinated manner without a strategic vision and reflecting poor competence at senior level, limited performance review and accountability. With the possible exception of the Public Accounts Committee, the interest of Parliamentary committees to discuss the reviews sent to them has been limited. Minister for Finance and Taoiseach-elect Brian Cowen, promised a review of the huge growth in State agencies over the past decade, at the launch of the report. Taoiseach Bertie Ahern, also speaking at the launch, said there were now some 800 agencies and this represented "too many by half"."

(Finfacts)

The Task Force set up to respond to the OECD Report launched its report last week

There wasn't that much said about it as everyone was focused on the issue of public spending and job cuts, which weren't covered in the report.

Here is the report: - it doesn't seem to say a whole lot about greater accountability and control over State Agencies, which was one of the OECD's strongest criticisms.

http://www.bettergov.ie/attached_files/upload/publications/PDF/Transforming%20Public%20Services.pdf

http://www.finfacts.ie/irishfinancenews/article_1015374.shtml
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PostSubject: Re: FAS management Fiasco - Employee Admits €1m Fraud   Sat Nov 29, 2008 5:32 pm

The hairdo is only a dsitraction form the big corruption at the core of this debacle.

The procurement of advertising, events management and PR are the biggies.

I wish the media would stop frolicking with pointless shite and go after the big stuff.

Like the Toyota car that is owed to the taxpayer...
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PostSubject: Re: FAS management Fiasco - Employee Admits €1m Fraud   Sat Nov 29, 2008 5:58 pm

EvotingMachine0197 wrote:
The hairdo is only a dsitraction form the big corruption at the core of this debacle.

The procurement of advertising, events management and PR are the biggies.

I wish the media would stop frolicking with pointless shite and go after the big stuff.

Like the Toyota car that is owed to the taxpayer...

Toyota car?
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PostSubject: Re: FAS management Fiasco - Employee Admits €1m Fraud   Sat Nov 29, 2008 6:00 pm

cactus,
I do agree that there is a high probability that this kind of abuse is endemic in parts of the public sector and does need to be stamped out.
What I meant by my earlier post was really what Evotingmachine said. The fuss over a hair-do is distracting from the real issue of serious misuse of expenses at FAS.

I believe Mary Harney is a decent and honest politician, so I don't think she had any mal-intentions in charging the hair-do to the state. Whether it was appropriate to do so is another issue but it doesn't warrant nearly as much discussion as the main story.

[Edit] I should probably just clarify here - I don't agree with Mary Harney's policies. I think she sould stand down as Minister for Health. She has no mandate.
I also don't agree with someone so ideologically driven being in such a senior cabinet position, but I don't think she's dishonest.
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PostSubject: Re: FAS management Fiasco - Employee Admits €1m Fraud   Sat Nov 29, 2008 6:15 pm

The missing Car

http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/frontpage/2008/1114/1226408634520.html

Quote :
One of the many issues covered by the report is one to do with a
Toyota car displayed during a Fás Opportunities fair in 2000. The car
was being offered as a raffle prize to those who attended the event and
completed a Fás registration form. Mr Craig told the audit team it was
discovered at a late stage no licence for the raffle had been arranged
and it was cancelled. "However, internal audit has determined
that the car was displayed during the event and very many attendees
completed forms on the basis that they were being entered into a draw
that, according to Greg Craig, did not occur." Fás was invoiced
for the cost of the car by Ultimate Events, which managed the fair. Mr
Craig told the audit team he believed the cost was credited back to
Fás. "From an analysis of material available to internal audit, this
seemed not to have been the case," the report said. "When Greg Craig
was made aware of this, he said that Fás was then owed a credit in this
regard. In the view of internal audit, this is a matter that needs to
be further investigated."
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PostSubject: Re: FAS management Fiasco - Employee Admits €1m Fraud   Sat Nov 29, 2008 6:24 pm

AfricanDave wrote:
cactus,
I do agree that there is a high probability that this kind of abuse is endemic in parts of the public sector and does need to be stamped out.
What I meant by my earlier post was really what Evotingmachine said. The fuss over a hair-do is distracting from the real issue of serious misuse of expenses at FAS.

I believe Mary Harney is a decent and honest politician, so I don't think she had any mal-intentions in charging the hair-do to the state. Whether it was appropriate to do so is another issue but it doesn't warrant nearly as much discussion as the main story.

Is it a question of either / or ? On the big scale, the OECD pointed out that Government has set up is it 800 State Agencies with very fuzzy terms and conditions and a lack of overseeing and control by Government. Government then set up a Task Force that issued a report last week. I admit to only having read the Executive Summary and contents, but I didn't spot anything about bringing the Agencies under better control. Is it surprising, given the lack of oversight, that there are scandals coming out of FAS, both on the expenses side and in terms of possible serious conflict of interest and breach of tendering procedures?

As well as lack of governance, there is the question of who gets appointed to the Boards of State agencies. Trevor Sargeant asked the Taoiseach a question on appointments in 2006 and this was part of the discussion that followed:

Quote :
The Taoiseach: With regard to boards generally, not just recently, but for a long time the position has been that Governments have had to try hard to get people for them. These people are from organisations and professions and are known. The Government has not been partisan about appointing boards and packing them with supporters as can be seen if one looks at the range of people on the various boards. Many of the chairmen of State boards are not affiliated to Fianna Fáil or the Progressive Democrats, but they do a good job. Even throughout the clearing house groups in my Department and the financial services group, I do not have a notion of people's politics. I would only know the party political affiliations of a small proportion of people. Nowadays, we must comply with employment regulations. This situation has come about over a long number of years.


Mr. McGinley: The Taoiseach is an innocent abroad. If we believe that, we would believe anything.

There is a list here of people appointed by the Taoiseach. http://www.greenparty.ie/en/government/in_the_dail/speeches/18_oct_06_taoiseach_s_appointments

Appointments to Boards are sometimes seen as rewards to friends and supporters, rather thanappointment of qualified and suitable people who will take their Board responsibilities seriously.

Leo Varadkar has proposed a Bill on these appointments. I haven't read it yet.
http://www.oireachtas.ie/viewdoc.asp?DocID=10010&&CatID=59
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PostSubject: Re: FAS management Fiasco - Employee Admits €1m Fraud   Sat Nov 29, 2008 6:31 pm

EvotingMachine0197 wrote:
The missing Car

http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/frontpage/2008/1114/1226408634520.html

Quote :
One of the many issues covered by the report is one to do with a
Toyota car displayed during a Fás Opportunities fair in 2000. The car
was being offered as a raffle prize to those who attended the event and
completed a Fás registration form. Mr Craig told the audit team it was
discovered at a late stage no licence for the raffle had been arranged
and it was cancelled. "However, internal audit has determined
that the car was displayed during the event and very many attendees
completed forms on the basis that they were being entered into a draw
that, according to Greg Craig, did not occur." Fás was invoiced
for the cost of the car by Ultimate Events, which managed the fair. Mr
Craig told the audit team he believed the cost was credited back to
Fás. "From an analysis of material available to internal audit, this
seemed not to have been the case," the report said. "When Greg Craig
was made aware of this, he said that Fás was then owed a credit in this
regard. In the view of internal audit, this is a matter that needs to
be further investigated."

Oh. That car Surprised
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PostSubject: Re: FAS management Fiasco - Employee Admits €1m Fraud   Sat Nov 29, 2008 6:36 pm

AfricanDave wrote:
cactus,
I do agree that there is a high probability that this kind of abuse is endemic in parts of the public sector and does need to be stamped out.
What I meant by my earlier post was really what Evotingmachine said. The fuss over a hair-do is distracting from the real issue of serious misuse of expenses at FAS.

I believe Mary Harney is a decent and honest politician, so I don't think she had any mal-intentions in charging the hair-do to the state. Whether it was appropriate to do so is another issue but it doesn't warrant nearly as much discussion as the main story.

[Edit] I should probably just clarify here - I don't agree with Mary Harney's policies. I think she sould stand down as Minister for Health. She has no mandate.
I also don't agree with someone so ideologically driven being in such a senior cabinet position, but I don't think she's dishonest.

Mistakes can be made. I worked in the public sector for a while and hate filling in expenses forms. I was eventually forced to do two years worth in one go, and scraped together my various receipts and dockets. A month later I was called up to the Internal Auditor's office and asked why had I asked for reimbursement for a double bed. Embarassed

I am concerned regarding Mary Harney. There was an issue over a holiday paid for by Ullick McEvaddey. There are questions over possible conflict of interest as her husband, formerly head of FAS, is now a "Health Industry Consultant"/lobbyist. There is the liking for chocolates and trips to Florida.
I think she too may suffer from a Sense of Entitlement.
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PostSubject: Re: FAS management Fiasco - Employee Admits €1m Fraud   Sat Nov 29, 2008 6:42 pm

I wouldn't argue on the Sense of Entitlement.
This is something that needs to be fixed.
John Drennan was on The Panel recently and he asked whether any of the cabinet would know how to work a Luas ticket.
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PostSubject: Re: FAS management Fiasco - Employee Admits €1m Fraud   Sat Nov 29, 2008 7:50 pm

Has someone already mentioned the close distance between Florida and tax havens like the Cayman islands?

To be sure, the above is just a simple speculative question, not an insinuation on tax dodging or something similar, and certainly not directed as a personal attack on M.Harney. There were other flights to Florida and there were other people, so I dont mean to single her out just because she is mentioned in this thread.


What makes me most angry reading cactus's report on the strictness of expenses in the public service, is the brass neck of people like Mary O'Rourke trying to rubbish it off as something that could easily be overlooked. We are being asked to accept a situation where there is one rule for the ordinary people, and another for the powerful!


Last edited by Respvblica on Sun Nov 30, 2008 1:47 pm; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: FAS management Fiasco - Employee Admits €1m Fraud   Sat Nov 29, 2008 8:35 pm

Respvblica wrote:
Has someone already mentioned the close distance between Florida and tax havens like the Cayman islands?
Oh ffs, a hair wash & dry in Florida and you’re trying to make connections with bank accounts in the Cayman Islands.
Are you getting’ free lessons from Leo or are you making this up yourself.
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PostSubject: Re: FAS management Fiasco - Employee Admits €1m Fraud   Sat Nov 29, 2008 9:12 pm

tonys wrote:
Respvblica wrote:
Has someone already mentioned the close distance between Florida and tax havens like the Cayman islands?
Oh ffs, a hair wash & dry in Florida and you’re trying to make connections with bank accounts in the Cayman Islands.
Are you getting’ free lessons from Leo or are you making this up yourself.

The geographic distance may be relatively close, but no other connection of any kind is indicated. Surprised
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PostSubject: Re: FAS management Fiasco - Employee Admits €1m Fraud   Sat Nov 29, 2008 9:30 pm

cactus flower wrote:
tonys wrote:
Respvblica wrote:
Has someone already mentioned the close distance between Florida and tax havens like the Cayman islands?
Oh ffs, a hair wash & dry in Florida and you’re trying to make connections with bank accounts in the Cayman Islands.
Are you getting’ free lessons from Leo or are you making this up yourself.

The geographic distance may be relatively close, but no other connection of any kind is indicated. Surprised
He must be getting lessons from Leo so.
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PostSubject: Re: FAS management Fiasco - Employee Admits €1m Fraud   Sat Nov 29, 2008 10:38 pm

cactus flower wrote:
tonys wrote:
Respvblica wrote:
Has someone already mentioned the close distance between Florida and tax havens like the Cayman islands?
Oh ffs, a hair wash & dry in Florida and you’re trying to make connections with bank accounts in the Cayman Islands.
Are you getting’ free lessons from Leo or are you making this up yourself.

The geographic distance may be relatively close, but no other connection of any kind is indicated. Surprised

I'm not making this up but I have seen it mentioned(here or p.ie). Thats why I asked the question, if anyone has any information. Jeez Tonys if only all it was was a bleedin haircut. Its not. Its endemic of the naked barefaced corruption and robbery of the public purse.

Its worth investigating I suppose, even though I doubt it. The present generation of crooks are unlike the Haughey-era ones in that they dont even try to hide their robbery of the taxpayer. Instead they take a far more brazen approach. They simply take the money as their legal right. They award themselves the highest salaries in the western world, the biggest expenses and use taxpayers money to bribe and buy everybody off. They are without doubt the most ignorant and sickening b*stards to every hold office in this country.

Once out of power we should hunt these guilty charlatans down, strip them of their benefits and throw them in gaol. Of course the opposition are hardly likely to do too much of that as they themselves are likley to start getting used to the feel of power, the comforts of office. This country needs some kind of revolution, if justice is every going to be carried out.


Last edited by Respvblica on Sat Nov 29, 2008 11:13 pm; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: FAS management Fiasco - Employee Admits €1m Fraud   Sat Nov 29, 2008 11:05 pm




Quote :
The present generation of crooks are unlike the Haughey-era ones in that they dont even try to hide their robbery of the taxpayer. Instead they take a far more brazen approach. They simply take the money as their legal right. They award themselves the highest salaries in the western world, the biggest expenses and use taxpayers money to bribe and buy everybody off. They are without doubt the most ignorant and sickening b*stards to every hold office in this country.
- You have a point there Respvblica

Quote :
BERTIE AHERN, Ireland's taoiseach (prime minister), has good reason to smile. He recently accepted his 26th pay rise in ten years, taking his annual salary to €310,000 ($446,000). He is now better rewarded for leading a country than most of his counterparts, including George Bush. Nicolas Sarkozy's pay increase this week of around 140% only bumps France's president up to $346,000 a year. Heading a small, rich country is the best bet. Earlier this year, Singapore's prime minister was awarded a 26% rise to some $2.1m.

I doubt they're counting the pensions.
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PostSubject: Re: FAS management Fiasco - Employee Admits €1m Fraud   Sat Nov 29, 2008 11:14 pm

Respvblica wrote:
cactus flower wrote:
tonys wrote:
Respvblica wrote:
Has someone already mentioned the close distance between Florida and tax havens like the Cayman islands?
Oh ffs, a hair wash & dry in Florida and you’re trying to make connections with bank accounts in the Cayman Islands.
Are you getting’ free lessons from Leo or are you making this up yourself.

The geographic distance may be relatively close, but no other connection of any kind is indicated. Surprised

I'm not making this up but I have seen it mentioned(here or p.ie). Thats why I asked the question, if anyone has any information. Jeez Tonys if only all it was was a bleedin haircut. Its not its endemic of the naked barefaced corruption and robbery of the public purse.

Its worth investigating I suppose, even though I doubt it. The present generation of crooks are unlike the Haughey-era ones in that they dont even try to hide their robbery of the taxpayer. Instead they take a far more brazen approach. They simply take the money as their legal right. They award themselves the highest salaries in the western world, the biggest expenses and use taxpayers money to bribe and buy everybody off. They are without doubt the most ignorant and sickening b*stards to every hold office in this country.

Once out of power we should hunt these guilty charlatans down, strip them of their benefits and throw them in gaol. Of course the opposition are hardly likely to do too much of that as they themselves are likley to start getting used to the feel of power, the comforts of office. This country needs some kind of revolution, if justice is every going to be carried out.
Politics.ie is not a standard any half sane person should use as justification.

My problem would be that anyone could think Mary Harney was capable of corruption of any sort not to mind of the “Cayman Island” variety. The fact that you would even allow for the possibility, and you do much more than that, to me, means that you would swallow a brick so long as it fits with your general views.

We have to show some discernment in our questioning of politicians and their motives, regardless of our view of their policies, otherwise we look like we are living in a black & white cartoon world, with nice neat “good” & “bad” labels on everything.

The vast majority of politicians on ALL sides are there to do, as they see it, the best they can do for every citizen, there are & have been a few who are in it for themselves, but they number very, very few.

You are of course free to take the print media view, that they are all probably corrupt, we just haven’t got the proof yet and that’s OK too, it sells newspapers, what more do you want?
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PostSubject: Re: FAS management Fiasco - Employee Admits €1m Fraud   Sun Nov 30, 2008 1:45 am

Tonys - You have a more optimistic angle on this and thats totally up to you.

As for me, I take the negative side. If we were all angels we would hardly need government or laws, now would we? I dont doubt that Harney, Lowry or even Haughey entered politics without at least believing that they could do some good. Even Hitler and Stalin at one point thought, in their own warped way of course, that they were doing humanity a favour and while I dont want to associate the present shower of dozy gits with the likes of those two monsters, its just to make a point that no matter what people do, be it criminal, mad fundamentalist, or corrupt politcian, they usually have some means of justifying their actions to themselves. I'm sure we can all find at least some excuse for even the vilest of people. Isnt that the real meaning behind Milton's Paradise Lost - sympathy for the devil!

But to get away from the individual for a minute, we need to draw a line between the private self(and the various excuses that you can make for them) and the common interest. It must be crystal clear to those that seek to serve the public interest that because they are given a very great responsibility, they must then carry out their functions in a very serious and scrupulous manner. Its not just about representing the country, its about being mandated directly by the people. There really is a world of difference between the misconduct of a private citizen and a publically elected oficial. Not only is the latter more serious in that it sets an awful example from the top, it is a complete breach of trust with the people at the constitutional level. And thats a lot of people. There are those, like me, who see it as a form of treason. The tragedy is, is that while the poor down and out junkie will get thrown into gaol, or the clerk who is caught manipulating expenses is sacked, the powerful politcian usually gets away scot free. You only need to look at Molloys severence!
Worse is abroad, but it affects us directly none the less. the EU transport commissioner Jaques Barot from France was given a suspended gaol sentence for embezzling 2million euro. But instead Chirac rewards this party stalwart with a pardon and a commissionership. Incredible, but we must ask ourselves whether or not this EU a pernicious influence on our political class?

Therefore I say that we need to be harder on our government and our public servants than anyone else, mainly because we expect much more. As long as they are in public service, they are not private citizens and should not be treated as such . No tears please because these people happily judge and condemn others and yet do not take the same medicine for themselves. So ideally a public person like Harney should be routinely investigated. Who are we to know what she has been responsible for, but if we dont act stingently we may never know.

And one other thing. You know I would normally always support Fine Gael, but I came to the conclusion that their big selling point, that they were more honest than FF, is basically a way for some people to avoid the really hard question. The idea that we must trust someone as complicated as a human being is to swallow a house more than a brick. In the end its too much of a gamble because the human being is a great deceiver and actor, a chamealeon that can change from hero to vilain in an instant.
The Americans have it half right - and they are not as naive and as trusting as we european. So they have real separation of powers and only allow the president two terms.

In that I'll paraphrase Mary Harney in that in this instance we should look to Boston rather than Berlin.
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PostSubject: Re: FAS management Fiasco - Employee Admits €1m Fraud   Sun Nov 30, 2008 2:23 am

Good post.
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PostSubject: Re: FAS management Fiasco - Employee Admits €1m Fraud   Sun Nov 30, 2008 2:34 am

Respvblica wrote:
Tonys - You have a more optimistic angle on this and thats totally up to you.

As for me, I take the negative side. If we were all angels we would hardly need government or laws, now would we? I dont doubt that Harney, Lowry or even Haughey entered politics without at least believing that they could do some good. Even Hitler and Stalin at one point thought, in their own warped way of course, that they were doing humanity a favour and while I dont want to associate the present shower of dozy gits with the likes of those two monsters, its just to make a point that no matter what people do, be it criminal, mad fundamentalist, or corrupt politcian, they usually have some means of justifying their actions to themselves. I'm sure we can all find at least some excuse for even the vilest of people. Isnt that the real meaning behind Milton's Paradise Lost - sympathy for the devil!

But to get away from the individual for a minute, we need to draw a line between the private self(and the various excuses that you can make for them) and the common interest. It must be crystal clear to those that seek to serve the public interest that because they are given a very great responsibility, they must then carry out their functions in a very serious and scrupulous manner. Its not just about representing the country, its about being mandated directly by the people. There really is a world of difference between the misconduct of a private citizen and a publically elected oficial. Not only is the latter more serious in that it sets an awful example from the top, it is a complete breach of trust with the people at the constitutional level. And thats a lot of people. There are those, like me, who see it as a form of treason. The tragedy is, is that while the poor down and out junkie will get thrown into gaol, or the clerk who is caught manipulating expenses is sacked, the powerful politcian usually gets away scot free. You only need to look at Molloys severence!
Worse is abroad, but it affects us directly none the less. the EU transport commissioner Jaques Barot from France was given a suspended gaol sentence for embezzling 2million euro. But instead Chirac rewards this party stalwart with a pardon and a commissionership. Incredible, but we must ask ourselves whether or not this EU a pernicious influence on our political class?

Therefore I say that we need to be harder on our government and our public servants than anyone else, mainly because we expect much more. As long as they are in public service, they are not private citizens and should not be treated as such . No tears please because these people happily judge and condemn others and yet do not take the same medicine for themselves. So ideally a public person like Harney should be routinely investigated. Who are we to know what she has been responsible for, but if we dont act stingently we may never know.

And one other thing. You know I would normally always support Fine Gael, but I came to the conclusion that their big selling point, that they were more honest than FF, is basically a way for some people to avoid the really hard question. The idea that we must trust someone as complicated as a human being is to swallow a house more than a brick. In the end its too much of a gamble because the human being is a great deceiver and actor, a chamealeon that can change from hero to vilain in an instant.
The Americans have it half right - and they are not as naive and as trusting as we european. So they have real separation of powers and only allow the president two terms.

In that I'll paraphrase Mary Harney in that in this instance we should look to Boston rather than Berlin.
All of the above is very fine in itself but it does not address my issue with your “Cayman Island” post.

I don’t think I have to be either naive or overflowing with the milk of human kindness to say that jumping from a hair cut to a possible stash of ill gotten gains stowed away in a tax haven is a jump too far.
It is the worst kind of smear, there is not only no proof of any such dealings, there is no suggestion or any reason whatsoever to believe that there might be any truth in the innuendo of your post with the Cayman Island reference. Leave that kind of lunacy to the half wits on the other site.

Insofar as the affair of the hair do is concerned it was either explicitly against the rules or it wasn’t, it is either a serious issue or it isn’t and no amount of grandstanding by Leo the mouth should be allowed to influence that.
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PostSubject: Re: FAS management Fiasco - Employee Admits €1m Fraud   Sun Nov 30, 2008 2:40 am

cactus flower wrote:
Good post.
I think the innuendo in his " Cayman Island" post is shameful and no amount people agreeing with him change that.
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PostSubject: Re: FAS management Fiasco - Employee Admits €1m Fraud   Sun Nov 30, 2008 2:54 am

There's no getting away from it, it was a fine post and a very well crafted first paragraph ending in Milton.

Wasn't there more innuendo about Cayman Islands there during the Summer ? I can't for the life of me remember what the detail was but wasn't there ? Something to do with Bertie ???
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PostSubject: Re: FAS management Fiasco - Employee Admits €1m Fraud   Sun Nov 30, 2008 3:10 am

Auditor #9 wrote:
There's no getting away from it, it was a fine post and a very well crafted first paragraph ending in Milton.

Wasn't there more innuendo about Cayman Islands there during the Summer ? I can't for the life of me remember what the detail was but wasn't there ? Something to do with Bertie ???
No I don’t think so, I know there was a good Cayman waffle about Albert earlier in the year, but even he can’t remember that. Smile

His first paragraph could have ended in Trafalgar Square for all I care, it still didn’t address the point at issue.
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PostSubject: Re: FAS management Fiasco - Employee Admits €1m Fraud   Sun Nov 30, 2008 3:14 am

tonys wrote:
Auditor #9 wrote:
There's no getting away from it, it was a fine post and a very well crafted first paragraph ending in Milton.

Wasn't there more innuendo about Cayman Islands there during the Summer ? I can't for the life of me remember what the detail was but wasn't there ? Something to do with Bertie ???
No I don’t think so, I know there was a good Cayman waffle about Albert earlier in the year, but even he can’t remember that. Smile

His first paragraph could have ended in Trafalgar Square for all I care, it still didn’t address the point at issue.

Reynolds ? Something about a politician having just enough time to stop off there or the Government jet stopping there unnecessarily or something ... arrgh. I can't seem to remember it being associated with Reynolds .. maybe it was Michael Martin ?

So the connection between Fás opening an account over there is out of the question so tonys ? I know there's no evidence for it but they are refusing to show the receipts for 5.7 million - who says one of the places it might have went was there ? Even more impossible than the moon landings not having happened ?
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