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Sunday Independent Stupid Statement of the Week October 19, 2014

Posted by Garibaldy in Sunday Independent Stupid Statement of the Week.
9 comments

The Sindo’s account of the complaints taken against the Independent Group by Gerry Adams makes not unentertaining reading, with the paper denying it has been curbed.

Dan O’Brien, in an article on Jean Tirole, who won the Nobel prize for the dismal science, assures us of the following

Today, on a broad swathe of issues around regulation, we live in a post-ideological world in which markets, states and a mixture of both are used to deliver desired outcome. As former British prime minister Tony Blair famously put it just before he took office “what matters is what works”.

Yep, we live in a world where economic regulation is in no way shaped by economic ideology. That’s why it works so well, as seen in the 2008 crash, the Libor scandal, tax-evasion etc etc etc.

Carol Hunt thinks ideology is a problem – an ideology and a culture that hates the self-employed.

Dempsey was talking about the people at the very bottom of Irish society, for whom there are no safety nets, no redundancy payments, Christmas bonuses, pensions, holiday pay or unemployment benefit; he was talking about the people who come into his office crying, desperate, embarrassed because they literally have no-one else to turn to for help. He was talking about the self-employed.

I’d have more sympathy for this argument if she was thinking not of middle-class people or even the poor property speculators, but of the likes of the striking JJ Rhatigan workers, forced into bogus self-employment so that they can be paid well beneath the minimum wage. But such matters appear to be beneath the notice of the Sindo.

In second place this week, with a classic of its type, is Eoghan Harris, reflecting on the problems with ideologues and the recent Budget.

As I said, I am no longer a republican socialist. But I still retain the sharp sense of social justice that brought me into the Workers Party – and out of it again. Reflecting on the Budget I was struck by the blatant bias of its class politics.

The Budget boosts those who already have too much. The only big group to come through the recession in comparative comfort was spared any cuts. I refer to the well-padded public sector.

The NYU findings mean I have no hope of changing the cold hearts of the Labour Party, Sinn Fein, Joe Higgins, or other protectors of the public sector. But as some of them are brazen enough to posture as socialists, let me ask them two simple questions.

And this week’s winner? Eoghan Harris.

Here’s one they might ask Minister Alex White. Why does RTE seem to give Sinn Fein, the public sector and Hamas such a soft ride?

You gotta love a mind that can think like that.

Sunday Independent Stupid Statement of the Week: DIY End of Austerity Edition October 12, 2014

Posted by Garibaldy in Sunday Independent Stupid Statement of the Week.
10 comments

No time to do this properly, and I’m sure the by-election results mean no-one cares, but feel free to add any suggestions in the comments. Just this from John Drennan to get started

The reason for the laughter will not just be because, like all finance ministers, Mr Noonan will be the king of the country for that day or because next week will see a red line being drawn through the Irish iron age of austerity.

I suspect there will be quite a few emigrants, people on jobsbridge, unemployed people, people with cut wages, people dealing with reductions in public services, people faced with water charges and others who might beg to differ.

Sunday Independent Stupid Statement of the Week October 5, 2014

Posted by Garibaldy in Sunday Independent Stupid Statement of the Week.
3 comments

A clear winner this week, in Eoghan Harris.

My problem with 1916 is not whether we would have got freedom without it. My problem is whether it is wise to glorify a group of gunmen who made a grab for power with no moral mandate. So far Fine Gael foolishly shows every sign of waving the green flag in 2016.

Moral mandate? An interesting term. Don’t think he’s thought the implications of that through. As for waving flags in 2016, perhaps he’d be happy if FG waved the union jack instead, preferably with a matching banner of Kitchner.

Sunday Independent Stupid Statement of the Week September 28, 2014

Posted by Garibaldy in Sunday Independent Stupid Statement of the Week.
55 comments

Ruth Dudley Edwards has an interesting piece in which she compares some of Alex Salmond’s statements c.2008 with recent remarks from the referendum. Let’s just say his left credentials seem somewhat less clear after reading it. She also, however, offers the following stupid comment on 16 and 17 year-olds voting.

What about the fact that only 48pc of 18-24 year olds voted ‘yes’, having got to an age when the hormones have calmed down and you can think about serious questions like what currency would Scotland have?

Too hormonal to vote. I’m pretty sure that people used to say something similar about women.

Brendan O’Connor is leading the fight back against the hegemony since 2009.

And so it has begun. The right is fighting back. Well, the centre-right is fighting back. Well, maybe the centre actually. Yes. The centre is fighting back. For five long years now, centrist parties in this country have been under attack from every worthy lefty going.

We are lucky to have him.

Finally, Eoghan Harris seems to have developed some timidity late in life.

I have no time for nationalism, at home or abroad. So I am glad Scotland said no. But I stayed silent on the issue until now because my voice would have been drowned out in the deafening Irish media consensus in favour of Scotland booting the Brits out.

Deeply strange thing for him to say.

Sunday Independent Stupid Statement of the Week September 21, 2014

Posted by Garibaldy in Sunday Independent Stupid Statement of the Week.
5 comments

Pretty slim pickings this week, but there is this gem from Dan O’Brien.

Is the political centre of gravity in Ireland on the right or on the left? Despite the small size of the Labour Party historically, this is not as straightforward a question to answer as it might seem.

It’s actually a very, very, very straightforward question to answer. You really do wonder sometimes.

Sunday Independent Stupid Statement of the Week September 14, 2014

Posted by Garibaldy in Sunday Independent Stupid Statement of the Week.
20 comments

Today’s love letter from Shane Ross to Leo Varadkar is utterly stupid.

Today you are to the cabinet what Jose Mourinho is to the soccer premiership, an uncontrollable genius, a maverick with a following. You are Fine Gael’s Special One.

But not as stupid as Niamh Horan’s love letter to developers, before whose genius and business acumen we must prostrate ourselves.

It takes a certain kind of man to become a successful property developer. The mavericks, the independent thinkers, driven by obsession and a hint of madness, the ones who aren’t afraid to take risks. To dream big and stop at nothing until their vision is realised.

It was them who got the economy going over the last two decades, and them we need to rely on again.

It must be true because, entirely coincidentally, John Waters is saying the same thing.

Most people have gotten over their anger sufficiently to accept that, whatever the immorality of the treatment of small, private debtors, this society needs developers in a way that is different than the way it needs mortgage holders. Most sane people can see that the two categories need to be treated differently.

Most people have reached the point where they understand that there is no point in burying someone like Harry Crosbie. But do those who represent us in these matters understand that this is increasingly the pubic view? Is our jealousy really that potent?

He also condemns the moralism inherent in the punishment of developers. Moralism is fine for the bedroom but not for the boardroom it seems. Because two men or two women getting married would be much more damaging to society than the consequences of the unchecked power of developers and their cheerleaders. Yep.

And I never even read the stuff on Big Ian. Nor the stuff on Scottish independence. If it’s a Yes vote, I expect unprecedented heights of stupidity next week.

Sunday Independent Stupid Statement of the Week August 31, 2014

Posted by Garibaldy in Sunday Independent Stupid Statement of the Week.
10 comments

Don’t have time to go through everything in the Sindo today, but I’ll be surprised if someone has topped Ruth Dudley Edwards, which starts as follows

Next month, a memorial to Hugo Chavez, the Venezuelan President and despot who died last year

Good to see her grasp of democracy is as strong as ever.

Sunday Independent Stupid Statement of the Week August 24, 2014

Posted by Garibaldy in Sunday Independent Stupid Statement of the Week.
20 comments

Thankfully, I don’t have time to do this properly this week, but there’s probably no need to look beyond this from a highly predictable source anyway, which is remarkably stupid for so many different reasons.

But there the comparison ends. Southern Protestant numbers have stabilised. The community will not cease to exist except by its own choice. But for the past 25 years, European Jews have faced a third threat from Muslim immigrants whose anti-Israeli anger has aroused dormant anti- Jewish prejudices across Europe.

As a result, the one million descendants of the Jews who somehow survived Hitler’s plan to make Europe “Judenfrei”, free of Jews, no longer feel welcome or safe. The largest number, nearly 80pc, live in France Their numbers are dropping fast, from 535,000 in 1980 to some 500,000 in just two decades, and that decrease is being accelerated by events like the Toulouse murder of a Rabbi and his three children.

Many observers believe Europe may be effectively empty of Jews by the end of this century. French Jews are already emigrating in significant numbers, prodded by Muslim hostility and the feeling of exclusion prompted by the current campaign of Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) which is now gaining strength in Ireland.

Sunday Independent Stupid Statement of the Week August 17, 2014

Posted by Garibaldy in Sunday Independent Stupid Statement of the Week.
4 comments

First off, an unexpected line in the Sindo editorial that will probably have some of its columnists and target audience fuming (John Bruton, though someone there still loves him.

The people, far from being credulous, are in arms against the reality of austerity and those fatted political calves who, like John Redmond a century ago, would sacrifice the flower of today’s youth to this fiscal witchcraft.

Eddie Hobbs has quite an article, foaming at the mouth about talks between government and the union leaders. Among the gems is to blame the unions for the difficulties encountered by non-union members, including business owners. Baffling.

The choreographed and nauseating public courtship of the sitting Labour Minister and the unions has begun, and among the cowardly, feckless and conservative political class no one has stepped forward to call this what it is – an open threat to pillage scarce resources just as soon as the siege has lifted, by those best fed during it.

Marc Coleman, unsurprisingly, runs similar arguments, and you can see him pining for a hard-right new force that the public just does not want.

Politicians fear the public sector because it is more 
organised. But numerically the private sector accounts for four fifths of the workforce. The public sector is more represented in our current affairs narrative (the fact that current affairs is dominated by a publicly funded broadcaster may 
be a factor). And the majority private sector hasn’t barked yet. But unless public pay rises are fair and preceded by bringing new ideas and people, it could develop a nasty bite.

I wonder if he has many blue shirts.

Sunday Independent Stupid Statement of the Week: DIY August 10, 2014

Posted by Garibaldy in Sunday Independent Stupid Statement of the Week.
11 comments

Don’t have time for this today, so over to you. I did have time to read Jody Corcoran’s musings on the economy however, in which he asks have we learnt nothing before answering, it seems, his own question

To answer the question, then – have we learned nothing? After a lost decade and generation, the answer is as simple as this: doing nothing is no longer an option.

And not doing nothing apparently means building houses in rural Ireland. Sound familiar?

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