Sunday Independent Stupid Statement of the Week March 2, 2014Posted by WorldbyStorm in Sunday Independent Stupid Statement of the Week.
Garibaldy is unable to do the SISSoftW this week, so it’s over to you all… But I couldn’t help noticing this reference in an actually quite good piece by Liam Fay on post offices:
During the boom, when the ballsy guys and smart money were barrelling ever deeper into construction, post offices were objects of scorn in many quarters, derided as glorified safety-deposit boxes in which little old ladies kept their savings. After the crash, and the revelation that little old ladies know more about investment than the wizards of high finance, the post offices looked like beacons of good practice and prudent management. Their existence, therefore, posed a problem.
Any contributions gratefully accepted.
Sunday Independent Stupid Statement of the Week February 23, 2014Posted by Garibaldy in Sunday Independent Stupid Statement of the Week.
Some sympathy for the devil perhaps from Julia Molony, with this description of a certain former newspaper editor.
It was Rebekah Brooks’s Bridget Jones moment. Last week, as she answered criminal charges in court, Fleet Street’s toughest hack revealed a previously unseen side to herself: the bruised, hapless romantic.
Is it just me or is this getting to the point of being contrary for the sake of it?
This week’s winner, Ruth Dudley Edwards, offers us some thoughts on Northern Ireland pre-1969, and the nature of discrimination there.
Everyone was equal under the law. As in the south, where we had an imperfect record in dealing with non-Catholics, there was indeed some discrimination, but it was at local and individual level and it certainly didn’t remotely compare with what women had to put up with at the time. Even in England, to which I emigrated at 21, I was refused jobs because of my gender. I didn’t, however, reach for an AK47.
Apparently gerrymandering occurs on a local and individual level. I’m glad Irish democracy has such stout defenders.
Sunday Independent Stupid Statement of the Week February 16, 2014Posted by Garibaldy in Sunday Independent Stupid Statement of the Week.
Emer O’Kelly, who is annoyed at Rory O’Neill, may in fact be writing for the wrong paper. Or she hasn’t really thought her column through. I wonder which is more likely.
I may loathe individual gays, or individual black people, because they’re unpleasant, ignorant, violent, right-wing, cruel, or criminal.
Sunday Independent Stupid Statement of the Week February 2, 2014Posted by Garibaldy in Sunday Independent Stupid Statement of the Week.
A prominent story on the business pages of the website sees the head of the Republic’s biggest recruitment agency claim high taxes are keeping people from returning from emigration. Sure.
The editorial is this week’s winner. In a section on recent research into mortgage arrears, which found that 75% of those in arrears are in work, it just can’t help itself. The last line:
It’s interesting the working paper also found that those working in the private sector are more likely to be in arrears than those in the public sector.
For fuck’s sake.
Sunday Independent Stupid Statement of the Week January 26, 2014Posted by Garibaldy in Sunday Independent Stupid Statement of the Week.
Fairly slim pickings this week, although it seems that not everything is online yet.
Brendan O’Connor expresses his outrage at the treatment of Angela Kerins and Rehab.
No one would defend some of the salaries in “charities” that exist at that weird intersection of public and private money. But it is terribly convenient when the alleged evils of the public sector and the charity sector can all be personified neatly in one villain.
Not that the Sindo would ever hunt for scapegoats. Nor is it interesting to note the number of times the words “public sector” appear in the article as the cause of problems.
Eilis O’Hanlon discusses the restoration of the embassy in the Vatican.
Closer to the truth is that the socialists see this new man in the pointy hat at the Vatican and they like the cut of his jib. He expresses solidarity with the poor and downtrodden. He seems to have a certain disdain for the excesses of capitalism. He drives an old banger. Oops, they seem to be thinking, perhaps we were too hasty. Best get back in there and start kissing the papal ring.
Good job Fine Gael had nothing to do with that decision, and aren’t worth mentioning then.
And an interesting article from Stephen Donnelly. He points out and condemns the outrageous facts below.
It shows that in 1990, the richest 1 per cent in Ireland earned about 6 per cent of total national income. By 2009, this had grown to 10 per cent. For the 18 countries with available data, this moved Ireland from 12th to seventh place in the inequality ranking, overtaking Italy, Spain, France, New Zealand and Japan. In fact, we had the third highest increase of the 18 countries. To belong to this 1 per cent today, you would have to earn over €360k. In 1990, a salary in today’s money of €120k got you in.
The richest 10 per cent in Ireland have done well too. They have seen their share of the pie rise from 31 per cent in 1990 to 36 per cent in 2009, which is now the second highest level in Europe. The jump moves Ireland from ninth to sixth place for the 18 countries.
When you examine accumulated wealth, rather than just income, the picture is even starker. Reports by Bank of Ireland and Credit Suisse estimate that in just five years, from 2006 to 2011, the wealthiest 1 per cent of families in Ireland increased their share of total wealth from 20 per cent to 28 per cent. Similarly, the wealthiest 5 per cent increased their share from 40 per cent to 47 per cent. So just 1/20th of Ireland’s families own nearly half of all the wealth.
This is a staggering increase, and has probably continued since 2011. The Fine Gael/Labour Government has now passed three budgets –for 2012, 2013 and 2014. Independent analysis by the ESRI shows that all three have been regressive. In other words, they have taken most from those who have the least. Recent analysis by the Central Statistics Office shows that since the crisis started, household income has fallen for 90 per cent of the population, with the fall getting bigger as the income gets smaller. It also shows that for the wealthiest 10 per cent, income has risen.
And yet we also get this.
We need a healthy, growing and highly competitive market-based economy in Ireland. Policies that drive further inequality do not achieve that, they stifle it. The academics know it, the NGOs know it, and now even the billionaires know it. It’s high time the Irish Government knew it too.
A failure to discern cause and effect if ever there were one.
Sunday Independent Stupid Statement of the Week January 19, 2014Posted by Garibaldy in Sunday Independent Stupid Statement of the Week.
This week’s editorial serves as a reminder of absolutely everything that is wrong with the Sindo’s view of the economy, and the system of government.
There is no doubt that when it comes to reform the Coalition is well-intentioned.
More than enough for this week I think.
Sunday Independent Stupid Statement of the Week January 12, 2014Posted by Garibaldy in Sunday Independent Stupid Statement of the Week.
A Sindo perfect storm this week. The paper is gushing with excitement at news that Bill Gates has been profiting from speculation on Irish bonds. Then there is the Ryanair-Google link-up. Following on from that, there is also a story about how porn watching has grown during the age of austerity. You can practically hear the hands being rubbed together with glee.
Meanwhile, Marc Coleman has worked out the solution to debt.
And while bank and government debt remains high by EU standards, Ireland’s population growth — and the fact that our population is much younger than the EU average — ameliorates this.
Get mating now.
Sunday Independent Miracle Statement of the week January 5, 2014Posted by Garibaldy in Sunday Independent Stupid Statement of the Week.
I hope Thomas Molloy doesn’t run into any of of the maniac columnists at the Sindo down a back ally after this remark.
Perhaps this is why the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development concluded in a lengthy report some years ago that so far “private health insurance has had only a minimal impact on the quality of care” in most countries.
As individuals, it may be pleasant to skip the queue and get three-course meals while in hospital, but the reality is private health insurance often does little more than push up prices in both sectors rather than improve the quality of service.
Exploding heads at Sindo HQ no doubt.
Normal service back next week no doubt.
Sunday Independent Goodwill Towards All December 29, 2013Posted by Garibaldy in Sunday Independent Stupid Statement of the Week.
Given the season that is in it, I thought it worth sharing Emer O’Kelly‘s reasons as to why we should give up on all that left/right ideological nonsense, and instead embrace a world built on ethical behaviour, ethics being, of course, “universal and ageless”.
Because ethics is merely another word for morality. And, a market economy is not necessarily immoral. And to define the market economy as unethical/immoral is to take a politically ideological stand. Once we do that, we cut ourselves off from influencing half the world. Because to be politically opposed to the market economy is confusing politics with morality. And over the long, weary and destructive years of the cold war, we saw how far right-left ideological clashes got us: into a stalemate of mistrust.
So there you are. Forget the politics, and all will be well this and every other Christmas.
Sunday Independent Stupid Statement of the Week December 22, 2013Posted by Garibaldy in Sunday Independent Stupid Statement of the Week.
First up, I wonder has this story appearing in their paper ruined half the columnists’ Christmas. That would be a shame. Then again, the very headline of this one is likely to restore their equilibrium.
Feudian slip of the year goes to Marc Coleman, who lavishes praise on the coalition’s strategy paper for the next 7 years, which is apparently set to bring back prosperity. Eventually.
Like wise men around a crib, government ministers have been waiting for last week’s GDP numbers. And for ESRI end-year forecasts also released last week. And both have brought tidings of joy. At 2.7 per cent for GNP and GDP, the ESRI’s forecast for growth next year is even better than the more optimistic scenario in the Government’s strategy document. Under it, we could reach full unemployment by 2020 or before.
It’s worth highlighting other parts of his column but. When he is saying how great things are right now, we get the following
But the news last week that the economy grew handsomely in the third quarter doesn’t fit the misery narrative. In 1.5 per cent for GDP and 1.6 per cent for GNP, the economy is now recovering.
However, when it comes to the future, what was handsome is now less than modest.
In fact, on modest assumptions — 2 per cent [growth] next year and 3.1 per cent on average out to 2020 — unemployment could fall to 8.1 per cent by the end of the decade. Under slightly better assumptions — 2.3 per cent growth next year and 3.2 per cent on average out to 2020 — it falls to 5.9 per cent. That is within shouting distance of full employment.
Does no-one proof-read this stuff, or is it some sort of Joycean stream-of-consciousness approach? It would explain a lot about the paper as a whole.