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This is an attack on our democracy!

By
SHANE HEGARTY
Irish Times.com

PRESENT TENSE: IN 2004 Allied Irish Banks became embroiled in a furore when it was discovered to have overcharged foreign exchange customers to the tune of many millions.

At the time the figure was put at €14 million (it ended up costing the bank €65 million), and the initial number was enough to make it the lead story for most broadcasters and newspapers. There were rows in the Dáil. The bank’s then chief executive, Michael Buckley, neatly apologised by describing it as an “administrative cock-up”, as if someone had just crossed the wrong T.

On Monday Anglo Irish Bank revealed that its latest half-year losses amounted to roughly the same as it would cost to rent a black hole and throw the country into it. At the same time the bank admitted that it was beginning an internal investigation into the overcharging of customers by as much as €50 million.

A few years ago this would have been a lead story, a match to ignite the parliamentary hot air. This week? It was an addendum, an “and finally . . .”, just another pile of cash to throw on the green-tinged pyre. It seemed, in the grand scheme, almost inconsequential. After all, it would amount to a mere 164th of the total losses – or just over 0.6 per cent. It is a throwback to the days when we were faced with figures we could almost understand. But now it is a pittance. Sure, you’d pay that off in half a generation.

It is a reminder of just how vast the scale of the Anglo money pit now is. How mind boggling. Once again the media rightly spent a good deal of time trying to put the cost into some kind of context – how many space shuttles you could buy, that kind of thing – but there is an argument that no amount of analogies or graphics or football pitches full of imaginary money can ever truly get the scale across to the average brain.

There were figures this week that were comprehensible. Unemployment is at 450,000. In a country of four and a half million that’s a straightforward figure.

One in 20 mortgages is now in arrears; on any average street that can be grasped. One in eight of the workforce without jobs: it’s possible to think of these in personal terms, in groups of friends. You will know some of the people behind those statistics. You may be one of them.

But €8 billion or €25 billion? That’s way past fantasy statistics. It’s a riot of zeros. In fact, there has been occasional discussion about whether reports should always come trailing those zeros, so that the figures become comets burning across the pages. That way the reader would consistently be clobbered by €8,000,000,000 or €25,000,000,000.

But would that get it across any better than the analogies? Or the stats about Anglo’s half-year loss alone representing €2,000 for every woman, man and child in the State? (Which does, oddly, underplay it a little: many credit-card bills are bigger than that.)

We are told that we will be paying for it for the rest of our lives, and that our children will be paying for it too. But in one respect this is nothing new. We’ve been saddled with debt all our lives and are familiar with the idea of paying off sums over long periods of time, either on a national or a domestic scale. A lot of people left the boom with mortgages that will be with them throughout their journey from youth to retirement.

The irony of it, then, is that the head-spinning scale of the cost is so ungraspable that the pain can be appreciated only at the micro level. The Budget will act as a certain shock but will represent the wider hole we’ve found ourself in. A lost job or wiped-out shares will do it, obviously.

But it is tempting to suggest some way in which the particular, unprecedented national trauma inflicted on us by Anglo could be immediately conferred on every individual, so that we might all physically feel the pain of it rather than the dull shock and exhaustion; so that the weight of those zeros is tangible. Someone breaking into your house and stealing a few grand worth of goods. Or every child who sets up a bank account immediately incurring an overdraft of several thousand. Or Seán FitzPatrick just going from door to door with flapping albatrosses attached to millstones, and padlocking them around the neck of everyone, young and old, in the State

Comment:

What can I add that I haven’t said or posted in any one of my own 1500 articles in my blog, on this toxic toilet?
it is to early in the morning to get all worked up but that is exactly what has been happening every morning for the last 18 months. I think it is knowing precisely ,the scale of this fraud that is been perpetrated on us, by all of the people in power and the enormous scale of the debts that Clown and Lenihan have saddled each and every one of us with.
This is an attack on our democracy, our ability to provide for ourselves and our families, our hard won financial independence is now been robbed of us by the imposition of someone else’s massive debts
This fraud is been perpetrated be the very government that is supposed to protect the people and their families under the Irish constitution
The state is in fact robbing people the ability to provide for their own families by imposing the massive debts from corrupt and fraudulent banks and I maintain that the government do not under the constitution have the right to impose such debts on the citizens of Ireland without going to the citizens and having a referendum.
After all they are not only stealing from this generation but the next generation as well
I believe it is the duty of every Irish citizen to revolt against this unconstitutional and thus illegal measure the government has taken without the permission of the people
I do not believe this government, nor any government have the constitutional right to impose fraudulent and corrupt private bank debts on to mine or any other family in the state and I further believe I have the morel and legal right to try and stop them doing so in defence of our family’s financial well being
With this Anglo Bailout and the NAMA legislation we lose one of our fundamental rights guaranteed in the constitution (The protection of the family)
Depressingly we now know that this toxic toiler is spewing out its toxic poison (debts) all over the country like the BP oil disaster in the Gulf, only this is twice as bad and is going to cost us a lot more
Just think of that
At least the Americans were able to force BP to Pay up for their disaster but imagine the American President said that the Government were going to nationalize that oil wellhead and pay off all its debts as well as pay up for the cleanup and loss of business in the Gulf area It would never happen full stop
No the Yanks told BP shareholders you must pay up and no ifs or buts’
Here in Ireland Clown and Lenihan would have gown down on bended knees and kissed BP in the Ass
And nationalized their debts and probably begged them to continue running the show
With the losses announced by Anglo Irish Bank any normal person would have called it a day
When things are as bad as this all sane people would say enough is enough
We simply cannot continue to allow this blatant robbery of the Irish nation’s wealth
We cannot allow this or any other Government to rob us blind and saddle us with the debts of a private bank that is the play thing of the golden circle of this country.
This must be stopped at any cost and the guilty must be made accountable for their monstrous fraud!

European bank stress test scam!

European bank stress test – official estimates signify NAMA is unintentionally overpaying for loans and undermine DoF’s claims about the Bottom

namawinelake | July 24, 2010 at 6:28 am

The Committee of European Banking Supervisors (CEBS) together with the EC and ECB has published its eagerly awaited results of stress-testing 91 European banks. The two Irish banks included in the exercise, Bank of Ireland and Allied Irish Banks passed the stress-test which set out to examine the capital base of banks in two scenarios – a benchmark scenario and an adverse scenario. Good news for BoI and AIB – seven other European banks didn’t pass the test.

As stated in the report “the benchmark scenario was based on the EU Commission Autumn 2009 forecast and the European Commission Interim Forecast in February 2010, with several adaptations to reflect recent macro-economic developments in a number of countries. The adverse macro-economic scenario was based on ECB estimates”. The assumptions for Ireland are summarized below together with the calculation by the CEBS of the effect on commercial and residential property prices

For information, here is a round up of recent predictions/projections for the Irish residential market:

For information, the ESRI published this week recovery scenarios for the State  – the high growth scenario and the low growth scenario. Both scenarios forecast 2010 GDP to contract by 0.4% and unemployment in 2010 to reach 14%.

What makes the stress test fascinating from the point of view of NAMA is its forecasts for commercial and residential property prices. It’s benchmark scenario is for a 15% compound decline in residential in 2010 and 2011 with drops in both years, a 19% compound decline in commercial in 2010 and 2011 with drops in both years. There is no projection beyond 2011. NAMA has chosen a Valuation Date of 30th November, 2009 pursuant to section 73 of the NAMA Act by reference to which NAMA is valuing the loans being transferred from the financial institutions.

How much does property need recover by 2020 assuming

1. Prices stop falling at the end of 2011

2. All property is sold in December 2020

3. 67% of property is located in Ireland

4. 33% of property is located in the UK

5. Property in the Ireland and the UK is split 50:50 between commercial and residential

The table below what recovery needs happen if NAMA is forced to rely on the recovery of the property market to break even – remember in the draft Business Plan is that the recovery was a flat 10% over 10 years. With the CEBS benchmark scenario, the recovery would be 24.7% and in the adverse scenario 41%. Both of these represent significant changes to NAMA’s draft Business Plan. To emphasise, assuming prices stop falling after 2011, the compound rate of growth needed would be 2.5% per annum for each of the nine years in the benchmark scenario and 4% in the adverse scenario.  These compound percentages might be rendered meaningless if there is significant default and NAMA’s interest receivable falls below its interest payable.

Perhaps a more interesting implication from the benchmark scenario is related to the question of whether NAMA is overpaying for loans now by paying for loans according to the 30th November, 2009. The answer is a resounding yes and if you compare forecast prices at the end of 2010 with the 30th November, 2010, there is an implication that NAMA is overpaying by something in the order of €3-6bn again based on the following assumptions:

1. NAMA acquires the loans by reference to a valuation date of 31st December 2010

2. Price changes in the month of December 2009 have been ignored

3. The LEV remains at a constant 11% above CMV

4. 67% of assets are in Ireland

5. 33% of assets are in the UK

6. The split of assets between commercial and residential is 50:50

Now of course the above is very much a simplification. NAMA’s assets may not correspond to general commercial and residential forecasts – where is development land for example? NAMA will have 7% or so of assets in the Rest of World. NAMA’s LEV as a percentage of CMV may change. So far this year in Ireland residential is off 5% (to the end of Q1) and commercial 8% (to the end of Q2) and the UK is broadly positive, so we have some way to drop before we get to the EU benchmark scenario. There are other assumptions but it is a fair representation, I believe, to say that we are overpaying by billions for NAMA loans by reference to current values – some overpayment was planned via the Long Term Economic Value device but the overpayment being referred to here is on top of that.

Lastly this stress test report comes on the heels of the publication of the EU’s Decision in respect of the first Anglo restructuring plan which was submitted with the DoF’s imprimatur, to the EC in November 2009. The Decision (paragraph 41) revealed that Anglo was planning for property prices were seen to drop in 2009 by 15-19% [actual according to Permanent TSB/ESRI was 18.5%] and continue falling in 2010 and 2011 before starting to rise in 2012. The average decline in property prices in the plan is estimated at 47% peak to trough but in the worst case is 62%. And now with this stress test we have the official EC/ECB estimates that property will continue to drop this year and next. Of course a finance minister has a responsibility to instil confidence but Brian Lenihan’s Bottom statements in September 2009 and April 2010 are now looking distinctly disingenuous and more importantly damaging because the Bottom will come at some point but may overshoot because of a lack of confidence in advice from the government.

source http://namawinelake.wordpress.com/2010/07/24/european-bank-stress-test-%e2%80%93-official-estimates-signify-nama-is-unintentionally-overpaying-for-loans-and-undermine-dof%e2%80%99s-claims-about-the-bottom/

comment

Needless to say this whole stress test episode is just a political stage show for the benefit of Joe public  in Euro land .The sad fact is that this test has absolutely no value whatsoever as it does not take into consideration the real dodgy bonds and loans that are the cause of the banking crises in Europe 

The various European politicians have jumped on this and are telling us and the markets that there is no financial crises with our banks and the  European Banks and it’s all a bad dream  that we are all collectively having!.

Cowen and Lenihans assurances that we have turned the corner in 2009 and again in April of this year were lies and dam lies!

How anybody will ever believe a word out of their lying mouths again I will never know!

We now need to wake up and start spending again and where are we going to get the money to spend when we are out of work, when the gangsters in the same “sound banks” are hiking interest rates and pushing people out of their homes as a result of their gambling

The government having poured billions into these same Toxic Banks, are desperately trying to get those of us that still have a little money to invest in these bankrupt banks so they can again start the whole rotten pyramid cycle all over again.Now that the country  is practically bankrupt, they are now about to sell off the last vestiges’ of silver ware the country has left, along with proposed new toll, s on the National roads network, along with home rates and water charges where can we go from here?

500,000 people are out of work and for the last two years none of the politicians in power or the crony independent TD, s that are propping them have done anything for the unemployed

The current government’s unemployment policy is to” let them eat cake “and waffle on about the smart economy

That’s smart all right 60,000 young people left the country last year and the ESRI believes at least 200,000 more will have left by 2014

Clearly the unemployed are only receiving lip service and are way down in the pecking order!

We need a complete change of the political system

Help get rid of the gombeen, s running this country,

Get active on the ground in your own neighbourhoods and do not vote the same leaches back into office

it’s time to change  the system!

Ivor Callely’s expenses

Members’ Interests Committee

Watch the Seanad committee discussions as part of its investigation into Senator Ivor Callely’s expenses.

video link http://www.rte.ie/live/index.html

Looking at this character waffling on and effectively making us all out to be idiots is just pathetic!

His blatant attempt to appeal to his colleagues and reminding them that serving the public is no walk in the park with regards to prying eyes

Convientely forgetting the little matter of 80,000 Euros clamed on his “expenses” from the public purse

May I remind this Gob**** that a great many people who trusted him would be expected to live 8 years on what he claimed on questionable expenses !

I hope this is not just a show put on by Fianna Fail just to be seen to be doing something about their complete lack of honesty and moral leadership

It would not surprise me to see this clown get a wrap on the knuckles and told not to get caught with his hand in the cookie jar again

This person’s demeanour speaks volumes see how he is talking to the panel as if he was addressing a bunch of his pals in the local pub!

There is no sense of him acknowledging the damage he is causing

What a pompous Ass****!

Preliminary Report Into Ireland’s Banking Crisis 31 May 2010

After reading the Preliminary Report into Ireland’s Banking Crisis one can only come to the conclusion that Cowen and Lenihan are Guilty of “Gross Incompetence and Dereliction of Duty”
And should resign immediately and be brought before the courts
on charges of economic treason !

Preliminary Report Into Ireland’s Banking Crisis 31 May 2010

What if this oil spill was off the coast of Ireland?

 

If this had happened in Irish waters the Government would have told the nation that we were all responsible and we must all put our shoulder to the wheel and help stop this well from leaking any more of our precious oil .They would also blame the single mothers and the Unemployed for using up badly needed financial resources that would otherwise be spent plugging the well.

A call for a national bond would be made and everyone in the work would be made pay a new oil cleanup carbon tax levy and the Unions would tell the members that we have no choice as this is the only option for the country

Gormley would employ a few green pals to count all the dead fish and Ryan would call for a national day of mourning .Brian lenihan would go on national TV to tell us we must tighten out collative belts yet another two notches!
Bertie Ahern would look for another “Dig out” from his pals to help pay his levy!
Having got it he would then seek an exemption from the revenue on the grounds he was a struggling artist!
The Government would then blame the protesters of shell to sea for the disaster and have them all thrown into jail!

Protesters at Anglo Irish Bank

 


It appears the four people on ledger were arrested as well as two or three people who had been outside. All this took place in the space of ten minutes. Inspector Gannon who led the assault on Shell to Sea campaigners at Polthomas pier in Rossport was spotted among the Gardai and witnesses reported they had the clear impression that the Gardai were acting under orders that no further protests against the bank bailouts were to be tolerated.

Up to 100 Gardai are now around Anglo Irish bank with a second protest having being called by eirigi for 14.00 today. It has been confirmed that this protest will still be going ahead as will Tuesdays protest at the Dail.

We would call on people to join the anti-capitalist block at 19.00 at the Wolfe Tone statue on Tuesday (opposite Shelbourne Hotel) where we will discuss how to best respond to the attacks on bank bailout protests before proceeding to the Dail. 

Full report at source
http://www.wsm.ie/c/gardai-attack-eirigi-anglo-irish

House price index (Permanent TSB/ESRI)

Quarter 1, 2010 – Permanent TSB/ESRI Index crashes 10.3% for Dublin

Today sees the publication of the first Permanent TSB/ESRI QUARTERLY house price index which replaces the old monthly index which was suspended following publication of the December 2009 index because of thin sales. The index published today tells us that the price of residential property has fallen by 4.8% since the end of December 2009 to the end of March 2010, ie an average monthly fall of 1.6%. The indication is that the pace of price falls is easing overall. The average price of a property nationwide is now €204,830. However prices in Dublin crashed 10.3% in the quarter which is worse than the 7.5% fall in Q4, 2009.

The National House Price index stood at 91.0 at the end of March 2010. The last time it was at this level was in November, 2002  when it stood at 91.2. The following shows the index since June 1999 at the end of each quarter (Mar, Jun, Sep, Dec).

The Dublin House Price index stood at 83.0 at the end of March 2010. The last time it was at this level was in June, 2002 when it stood at 83.3. The following shows the index since June 1999 at the end of each quarter (Mar, Jun, Sep, Dec). The average price of a property in Dublin is now €250,872.

The Outside Dublin House Price index stood at 95.9 at the end of March 2010. The last time it was at this level was in March, 2003 when it stood at 96.3. The following shows the index since June 1999 at the end of each quarter (Mar, Jun, Sep, Dec). The average price of a property is now €183,309.

So the key questions : are prices still falling? We don’t know by month but it is certainly the case that prices have continued to fall since December 2009 and the rate of fall between Sep-Dec 2009 (quarter) was 8.5% compared with a fall between Dec 2009 and March 2010 (quarter) of 4.8%.

source http://namawinelake.wordpress.com/2010/04/30/quarter-1-2010-permanent-tsbesr-index-crashes-10-3-for-dublin/

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