Sunday 27 January 2013

THE DIRTY DOZEN w/e Feb 3rd 2013

Our government's starting position in their negotiations with Europe on both the €31bn Promissory Notes and the €41bn legacy bank debt (the money 'owed' to the two ECB emergency funds) is that they are not looking for a cent of debt writedown, just an extension of terms and conditions.

In other words this government isn't looking for even a single euro of burden-sharing with the banks or their bondholders, who continue to be paid in full (see the table below, €1.8bn bond coming up on Monday next for AIB, our money), but instead their stated policy is to look for burden-sharing with future generations.

And even at that they are given the cold shoulder, the word being that the ECB can't possibly be seen to breaking its own rules and bailing out sovereign governments. A bit rich, considering a) how many of its own rules it has bent/broken so far in the course of a crisis they are themselves perpetuating through their narrow, selfish policies, but b) and even more rich, considering that they strong-armed our previous equally weak government into issuing those Promissory Notes in the first place, to bail out the rotten, failed, zombie Anglo Irish Bank, and to a lesser extent the equally zombie Irish Nationwide and EBS.

It's late, I've had a long day, an even longer week (see here). If you're not fighting this enslavement of the Irish people, you're facilitating it.

Monday 14 January 2013

THE DIRTY DOZEN w/e Jan 20th 2013

Today is the day my friends, Monday January 14th, two individual bonds maturing at Irish Life & Permanent, each for $1.75bn; that's a total of $3.5bn from one bank in one day, not a whole lot less than the entire 'adjustment' for Budget 2013, from a bank we own. Michael Noonan has stated in the Dáil (last July) that it's just one $1.75bn bond but my information says otherwise and unless there is written proof otherwise - Parliamentary Question, anyone?

Some will say we have a legal obligation to pay those bonds, that they are now government guaranteed. What's legal isn't always legitimate, is it? Slavery was legal, as was apartheid; the Penal Laws were legal and through the ownership clause, whereby Catholics were prevented from owning any kind of property - including especially the land on which they worked - above a certain minimum value, it led almost directly to the Great Hunger of the 1840s. In more recent times we had the denial of the vote to women, legal, the denial of civil rights to certain groups because of their race/religion - legal. But legitimate?

For as long as mankind has been making law (and it's nearly always been men), we've been making bad law. Good people have a duty to reject that bad law, to fight that bad law.

This bank debt is odious, this bank debt is illegitimate. Through various means - distortion of facts, extortion through bullying - the people of this country have already been robbed of over €70bn (when interest lost and paid is included). We have been saddled with a debt that isn't ours, was never ours, and either morally or justly, will never be ours.

At 1pm today, Monday, some of us will be in Cork, outside the bank offices in Patrick Street, to protest these payments.

Sunday January 27th is week 100 of the BallyheaSaysNo protest, when we will be marching in both Ballyhea and Charleville in protest yet again at the imposition of this odious debt. Join us.

Saturday 12 January 2013

THE DIRTY DOZEN w/e Jan 13th 2013

Nearly missed a week - apologies, snowed under on the home front for a while but back live today.

No change from last week but the big two draw ever closer. A few of us will be in Patrick Street in Cork at 1pm this coming Monday, Jan 14th, to mark the payment of two massive bonds, each for $1.75bn - I don't think this would be a particularly good week to head into Irish Life & Permanent for the loan of a few bob...

On the protest front, we're heading for a milestone none of us ever wanted, none of us ever foresaw either when we started our weekly protest march in Ballyhea back on March 6th, 2011. Week 100 is on Jan 27th and we're hopeful it will be our biggest turnout yet. We're also hosting an open meeting on Jan 26th at the Charleville Park Hotel, starting at 8pm, for which we already have a number of eminent speakers lined up. We're also fairly certain that on the night we'll have a real surprise speaker - watch this space...

Tuesday 1 January 2013

THE DIRTY DOZEN w/e Jan 6th 2013

The first post on this blog of 2013 and a truly wretched opening. Twin bonds from Irish Life & Permanent, one of the several banks/building societies bailed out in our names but never with our specific consent. Each bond is for $1.75bn, a total of $3.5bn, which translates at today's rates as €2.65bn.

They are both 'guaranteed' - so what? This is still €2.65bn being bled in just one day, next Monday week, from an Irish economy already on its knees. Look through the entire dozen, they add up to nearly €5bn; this new year, 2013, the total in bonds being paid out by the Irish banks is over €17bn, and this is not taking into account the coupons being paid every year on those bonds. Bear in mind also, paying those bonds is the absolute priority of the banks; every cent of every bond, big or small, guaranteed or unguaranteed. They daren't renege because if they do, well, the whole magnificent edifice will come crashing down, won't it, bringing this whole magnificent economy with it, then the euro, then the eurozone, then the entire EU project itself, then - oh dear God, no money in the ATM, no money to pay the Guards/Nurses/Teachers, though we'd have just enough left to pay the pensions/perks/salaries of our brilliant politicians, top civil servants, top bankers, all top people if course.

Back to the twin bombs - sorry, twin bonds. Look at the date of issue, Jan 14th 2010, three years ago; ask yourself - why exactly were those bonds issued? For what purpose? My own conclusion - to pay other existing unguaranteed bonds. What else is IL&P doing with that money, lending it out to small and medium enterprises? No, I don't think so either. €69.7bn to save our banks - save them for what?

We'll keep asking the questions, keep posting the details, and keep marching in protest. Week 97 this Sunday, in Ballyhea at 11.30am, but we're building towards week 100, Jan 27th - please, if you feel as we do about this debt enslavement of the people, join us. Meanwhile Happy New Year, again and again.