Citizen Journalism: Selection of emails to Government and related. Year 2010 August to December by Michelle Clarke

Subject: Mental Health: The Stigma. The inadequate primary care provision. The lack of beds for those in need. Children who have mental health issues.  Suicide and the loss to suicide. As Prof. Malone said…the loss is two: firstly the dead person but secondly the loss to the bereaved.
Date: Friday 20th August 2010 22:06:45 +0100
From: Michelle Clarke
To: Andrew Harkness <aharkness@imhc.ie>, colm.mccarthy@ucd.ie, Constantin Gurdgiev <gurdgiev@gmail.com>, Contact <contact@tascnet.ie>, daniel.neville@oireachtas.ie <daniel.neville@oireachtas.ie>, Fíona Ní Chinneide <FNiChinneide@iprt.ie>, Hugh Kane <hugh.kane@mhcirl.ie>, humanrights@nuigalway.ie, James.Reilly@Oireachtas.ie <James.Reilly@Oireachtas.ie>, jim.mcdaid@oireachtas.ie <jim.mcdaid@oireachtas.ie>, Jim.Walsh@oireachtas.ie, jimmy.devins@oireachtas.ie <jimmy.devins@oireachtas.ie>, marcella_luz@health.gov.ie, thefrontlineaudience@rte.ie, tilda@tcd.ie, Liam-IPRT <LHerrick@iprt.ie>, Trust Ireland <trustire@indigo.ie>

Friday 20th August 2010

Dublin Hospitals scoop four awards:  the heading in a local newspaper
by Michelle Clarke

Does anyone think there is a total mismatch in reporting by the media?  You listen to RTE news and watch the TV and read the newspapers and all that is portrayed is the negative impact to our health system; the myriad of inadequacies, much of which is covered in the foregoing postings (source on request: a Citizen Journalism site). The pictures of Accident and Emergency trolleys indicate expectation.

Today’s Irish times covers mental health and its need for priority. It is now 5 years since the supposed Blueprint from Government to MODERNISE mental health services and in the meantime the supposed property land-bank i.e. including the properties of St. Itas, St. Brendan’s etc. has devalued by near 100% and that is if the properties are even marketable.

All we seem to hear about these days are Awards that our hospitals receive and yes those Centres of Excellence. Well the community hospital in Dublin 4 is no recipient of such awards. It is a crying disgrace and yet it is in the same locality as the Mental Health Commission; the Health Research Board; etc.

Malcolm R. Garland MD, Senior Lecturer in Psychiatry, Royal College of Surgeons writes to the Irish Times Editor today: The title is re-inventing ‘asylum’ buildings. His first line mentions the Mental Health Commission’s statutory powers to order the closures of St. Brendan’s, St. Ita’s and St. Senans and he refers to the inhumane conditions people are contained within in these hospitals. However he asks the poignant question? ‘Are we throwing out the baby with the bath water’?. I say yes because we have no community services for the people we release from these inhumane hospitals at a community level. We have wasted time, money, potential, resources just neglecting our most vulnerable members in society – yes those diagnosed with a mental illness, those who at times need periods in hospital to regain a balance in their existence, are hounded further by Society.

This is of significance to me today. I was in a public hospital a decade ago because I needed a haven. I was in a ward and all I really recall was the friendship of an elderly former teacher. I had been in hospital for months and the day I was leaving Eleanor, distressed gave me a hug as I said good bye and gave her and the others in my ward a bar of chocolate. To this day I stand ashamed but I did what I could. She told me what she planned to do. I listened and I even pleaded with her not to hurt her family, her children. I told the nurses who continually take notes i.e. (avoid contact and engage in functional administration) and I left the hospital and that day so did Eleanor. She did as she told me and her body was found in the river.

I came out to family and friends and a degree of understanding but what about others? What about when your family tires of your bipolar or dystonia episodes. Mr. Garland is right to ask in today’s Irish Times where are the replacement acute units for people with mental health problems (add to this people who have addictions, phobias, social anxiety, young people who give up school due to anxiety problems). Mr. Garland may have a good point about the locations of these hospitals and their link to nature.

The last line must ring out to those who look so weary when they talk about mental health i.e.

Minister for State Mr. Moloney (who at least has the courage to appear on the Vincent Browne TV3 show…..)
Dr. Siobhan Barry, College of Psychiatry of Ireland
Mr. Hugh Kane, the Mental Health Commission
Mr. Rogan, St. Brendans
and Mr. Garland, of course……..

‘Is a small cramped admission unit with little or no access to outside space the best place to recover one’s mental health? Can we transform it into a place of Vibrancy, Dignity and Recovery?

Discrimination and stigma says no. The funds were supposed to have been ring-fenced but the evidence suggests otherwise.

Yet I had occasion to go to Harold’s Cross Hospital on several occasions this week. Here is a facility that is a Centre of Excellence. There is a large building with bold print stating Education and Research on the Grounds (a source of inspiration for a person with a life time diagnosis).

The standards are beyond belief. Each ward after another is spotless. There is a rest room with views to the grounds. The literature abounds about Arthritis and how best to engage in palliative care, physiotherapy, counselling etc. There is an Oratory. The staff are approachable and pleasant. But then this is not a stigmatised illness. There is HOPE.

I applaud the standards but what really concerned me was the lack of patients. If one was doing a cost benefit analysis one would reckon that spatial to person had an underlying profit factor for the architects, engineers, developers etc.

When I called at the weekend. My friend was gone but then so was everyone in the ward and the other wards; they were parceled out nicely for the weekends and all that remained were the staff. My friend was transferred to the main building to a room and again he had staff surrounding him but no patients.

To all in Government: It is time to look at quality and space utilisation revolving around the potential and actual care of people. I read the web page for the consultant based at St. Vincents and I note that there is a waiting list in excess of 5,000. What is the problem? Is this about private care in a public hospital or what is it?

Mental health is vital and it is extremely important to have community services in place and acute units when the need demands. We call for a referendum for children but in the meantime we are leaving children open to vice, suicide, being murdered etc.

Add to this the conditions in the Central Mental Hospital……where is the hope?

by Michelle Clarke

Quotation from a man eminent in his field of research in decades gone by:
Michael J. Kelleher was a clinical director with the Southern Health Board, consultant psychiatrist and the founder of the Suicide Research Foundation in Cork.  He was a member of the Department of Health National Task Force on Suicide…..he had extensive experience in working and lecturing abroad….He is not to be forgotten.  (Book:  Suicide and the Irish 1996).

About tipping the balance…the real cost of anxiety!

‘Anxiety is a sense of dread and apprehension about the future.
It is associated with a loss of confidence and a loss of assertiveness.  Although, if a person is threatened, he may respond with a vehemence and anger that surprises even himself.  There may be a fear of going out, as well as a fear of being alone.  Added to this there is a gnawing fear that the suicide will be imitated – by oneself, as sometimes happens; or by children or siblings, as is more frequently the case.  Depression and Anxiety are often mixedAnger and a need to apportion blame are common experiences.  Recourse to alcohol or medicinal drugs (in particular the benzodiazepines, which are commonly prescribed for both anxiety and sleep) is a further hazard. The individual’s future emotional and psychological health will be determined by how he or she responds to these unforeseen stresses.  It is important to emphasize that it is natural to feel pain.  In a sense emotional pain helps to cleanse our minds, at least initially (page 73)

Subject: Literature and the absence of credence to the Award granted to literature recently – Dublin, Ireland
Date: Tuesday 31st Aug 2010 18:05:30 +0100
From: Michelle Clarke
To: Michelle Clarke <michelleclarke@upcmail.ie>, Aine Kavanagh <AKavanagh@dublintourism.ie>, Anne Lee <leea@ihf.ie>, Barbara Wood <bwood@tourismireland.com>, Bill Martin <thecollins22society@gmail.com>, books@kennys.ie <books@kennys.ie>, burrenbeo.com <info@burrenbeo.com>, Celina Carey <celina.carey@artscouncil.ie>, conservation@dublincity.ie <conservation@dublincity.ie>, customerservices@dublincity.ie <customerservices@dublincity.ie>, DE BRÚN Bairbre <bairbre.debrun@europarl.europa.eu>, desreid35@hotmail.com, Dymphna Moore <D.Moore@ria.ie>, envirocentre@enterprise-ireland.com, Fred Johnston <fredjohnston_52@hotmail.com>, Martin Holohan <mholohan@leehotels.com>, nda@nda.ie, Noel Ashe <Noel.Ashe@failteireland.ie>, reception@lansdownehotel.ie, Reception <Reception@tourismireland.com>, Sinead Grace <SGrace@tourismireland.com>, SylviaLynam@dast.gov.ie <SylviaLynam@dast.gov.ie>, Waterstone’s <team@email.waterstones.com>

31st August 2010

 

A question?  Ireland:  Did we receive a title regarding Literature recently?

by Michelle Clarke

Not alone have I missed out but the absence of an emphasis in bookshops e.g. Easons, Hodgis and Figgis, Waterstones which I only can say  is astounding.

We need surely to capitalise and in particular Tourism needs to wake up with their emphasis on promotion and theme driven impetus.

Kildare Street:  Just across from the Dail are some old Georgian houses. Up to quite recently there was a Dublin Tourism (I presume) plaque on the Wall indicating that Bram Stoker lived there i.e. Dracula writer.  It is removed.  Why?  Dracula is inherent to Irish culture surely.  Note the Yeats exhibition nearby is really worth a visit.

We need to promote the ‘book’ versus the technology of the ‘books’ surely.  Our heritage is in literature and scholarship.  We need more book havens like the Winding Stairs bookshop on the Quays.  We are losing our cultural literary personality.  Web pages prompt links but linkages are also important in traditional communication.

by Michelle Clarke
Quotation ex. Amnesty Little Book of Bright Spirits
High Notes
‘Music is the mediator between the spiritual and the sensual life’
Ludwig Van Beethoven (1770-1827)
German Composer

Thursday 9th September 2010

Joe Duffy show worth listening to… Enid O’Dowd dedicated Community Activist – Social Justice and our morally bankrupt State.
by Michelle Clarke 
Nearly one year ago these postings originated and yet if we ask what has happened to improve the lives of the socially, medically, economically, vulnerable people and in particular the children, those sick, those in need of community development supports, all we hear about is more evidence based research (i.e. for the status quo of academia), unemployment figures in excess of 470,000 (not to mention the number of people who have emigrated), people losing medical cards, children with special needs losing their assistants while the wealthy are protected.

Note: how the wealthy are given credit for inspiring charities e.g. look at the myriad of suicide related groups that have mushroomed yet the powers of medicine and academia are crying out for research. What about humanity, compassion, interaction at a practical level.

Enid O’Dowd http://www.dublininquirer.com/author/enid-o-dowd/ not related anymore to a political party has dedicated her time to being a Community Activist. She is involved in the campaign to try and stop the close down of the eminent hospital of St. Lukes – who so many can vouch for.

Enid spoke with emphasis, authority and genuine concern about our failing economy. This woman is a Chartered Accountant who put her academia and experience together to create a study and an Irish Times article that kicked the ball into play. It was summed up in brief words ‘She published but the Govt. representatives rubbished it’

Yes, this woman sighted the expenses conundrum within government and no doubt relating to many other bodies. Do you realise that ‘Turning up money is paid’ i.e. euros 12,000 tax free; but more annoying this is paid to Mr. Ahern retired Taoiseach also. This is the min. payment.

This woman explained that our expenses proviso is in fact dealt with in the Constitution which concerned very different times and speaks about allowances. Apparently when Charlie McCreevy entered the Department of Finance he mooted a radical increase in expenses by 70%. Are we surprised? No. The Irish people are passive resistant and they have come to believe that a two tier society is Fine. I ask them what has changed. Our forefathers provided they were not the landed gentry just dopped their caps to their masters……..all we have in Ireland presently is a new breed of politically connected and basically corrupt set of masters…. who too easily became clad in the Monarchial gowns of times gone by. Our media is originating and consumed by their vanities, their activities while all in ‘Rome/Dublin’ is falling beneath the abyss which is linked at the hip to moral bankruptcy.

Enid summed it up well when she referred to her findings and blatantly spoke of our political hippos as being engaged in legalised theft.

The first posting referred to the following (Citizen Journalism site; name on request): It is time for people to start thinking, engaging and looking to outcomes for those who have engaged in Financial Crime. It is being tackled worldwide and we need action. Sometimes in the formation of country such as Ireland which is ‘YOUNG’ still, a reminder of earlier intentions is worth the effort: Note the words ‘consent of the Irish people’ and the word conscience.

The Constitution of Sinn Fein Point No 4. 1905:

‘Whereas no law made without the authority and consent of the Irish people is or ever can be binding on their conscience

Therefore in accordance with the Resolution of Sinn Fein adopted in Convention, 1905, a Constituent Assembly shall be convoked, comprising persons chosen by the Irish Constituencies as the supreme national authority to speak and act in the name of the Irish people and to devise and formulate measures for the welfare of the people of Ireland’

People phoned in and some man spoke about there is an under current that invokes the spirit of revolution….

by Michelle Clarke

Subject: Alone: Homeless people or those with no habitual residence. Is there primary care and where for these people? Is this part of the reason our A&E’s are so busy?….There is a real need for common sense.
Date: Saturday 1th September 2010 18:03:39 +0100
From: Michelle Clarke
To: emma.k@alone.ie, Angela_McGrory@health.irlgov.ie <Angela_McGrory@health.irlgov.ie>, colm.mccarthy@ucd.ie, Hugh Kane <hugh.kane@mhcirl.ie>, marcella_luz@health.gov.ie, Mairead_O’Hora@health.gov.ie <Mairead_O’Hora@health.gov.ie>, pj.drudy@tcd.ie, Shiels, Lorraine <Lorraine.Shiels@ie.tesco.com>, Trust Ireland <trustire@indigo.ie>

Saturday 11th September 2010

Alone: Homeless people or those with no habitual residence. Is there primary care and where for these people? Is this part of the reason our A&E’s are so busy?….There is a real need for common sense.  By Michelle Clarke

Emma

I am concerned about three people who spend most of their day begging in Upper Baggot Street by coincidence adjacent to the FAS offices.  I find it incredible that FAS and the Community hospital i.e. Royal City of Dublin hospital, Baggot Street provide no initiative to improve the lives of these three relatively young people.  They have missed the message i.e. bureaucracy fostered by Govt. and  their negligence  viz a viz taxpayers money.

There is no need for these people to have neglected health conditions or for that matter no provision of housing in a market that has a surplus of houses.  (30,000 empty houses are reported to exist in Dublin and add to this the zombie hotels and ghost housing estates throughout Ireland).  We need a matrix and a cost benefit analysis and we can provide the solutions to the homeless problems, and for those who need affordable housing.  If we do not start to listen to the stories of those who fall by the wayside and provide the services they need to put them back within society, the future is building up a crisis.

Well done to Alone but we need to weave a web of stories and get a focus on reality and that means forget the ‘research office style’ and get to the streets for the real truth.  Today John told me he has no access to a GP and remains awake all night (he lives in a tent).  There used to be dispensary practices and I hope you can tell me that we in the Island of Ireland could not possibly neglect our people at primary care level?  What can I do for this man?  Why is there no full time equivalent dispensary doctor based for say a two hour period each day to cope with people in crisis.  Policy in Ireland is research driven and the problem appears to be at grassroot level response.

We have a friend and this man is highly academic and yet he can’t keep his apartment tidy.  He is a hoarder.  His place would need a skip and yet to the outside world he is a great man in his professional field but so you see, the homeless person has no chance with no home even to be untidy like my friend but at least the homeless man is showing you life exactly as it is…..we must all realize that we can often be but just one pay-packet away from being homelessness and particularly now as the Recession bites deep.

Quotation:

HOPE
‘We must accept finite disappointment,
but never lose infinite hope
Martin Luther King (1928-68)
US Civil Rights Activist

 


Date: Tuesday 14th September 2010 17:30:41
From: Michelle Clarke
To: daniel.neville@oireachtas.ie<daniel.neville@oireachtas.ie>, Hugh Kane <hugh.kane@mhcirl.ie>, info@ias.ie, info@inou.ie, info@inspectorofprisons.gov.ie

Tuesday 14th September 2010

Reply to Infowars Ireland: 

‘Ireland calls for National Suicide Research Team’
by Michelle Clarke

‘The Oireachtas Committee on Health and Children yesterday heard how there was a vacuum of information on the reasons behind rising death numbers and clusters of young people deciding to end their lives’ and I say its October (thought to be the worst month in the year for Suicides) and I despair when I see the above.

Research … Research … Research. Science determines it must be evidence  based but meantime the reality is that people despair, people and children become suicidal and if one cares to alert themselves to the history of suicide, the origins are there. A most evidence based book is that written by A. Alvarez – the Savage God (1971). Durkheim wrote about Anomie and the shift was from the morality of the act to the social conditions which produce the despair associated with the suicide. We have the social conditions now.

Unemployment figures are rising towards 500,000 people out of work and a large percentage of these in negative equity. The impact, well we don’t know but we can rest assured that people will reach levels of despair … and the costs to our society will be high. Suffering is about pain and how suffering impacts on people is part of the great unknown.

This may be of interest to some reader: Suffering – the Unwanted Blessing written by Frances Hogan (1990). We can ask ourselves what has changed or can be changed?

‘I have always felt terrible pain at the news of suicide successfully carried out. My heart cries out: But where was your neighbour? Was there no-one to listen to your pain? Did no-one in your environment have an answer to life? Where are the Christians? The suicide tells us that no-one offered anything to live for. The solutions were not worth the effort. Their death is an accusation to us all and a terrible challenge to REACH OUT to others we meet on Life’s Journey. The fact is that suffering and sorrow is known to everyone but the MEANING OF SUFFERING is known to very few. —— The decaffeinated coffee mentality i.e. Drink the Coffee but do not suffer the side effects. The magic pill takes away the feeling but not the fact it dehumanises us. People kill themselves emotionally before they ever do physically. PAIN IS THE WARNING SIGN’

What more can research do other than earn fat incomes for researchers? Meanwhile people continue to die. Quotation Camus ‘What is called a reason for living is also an excellent reason for dying’?

by Michelle Clarke


Date: Sunday 3rd October 2010 17:58:22 +0100
From: Michelle Clarke
To: Infowars Ireland

Sunday 3rd October 2010

Up to the people and citizens of Ireland to grasp the nettle and persevere.
by Michelle Clarke
The investors are attempting to force the Irish authorities to pay them more for the debt they hold in Anglo Irish Bank and say if their demands are not met they could trigger a default crisis…’and it is Citigroup that stages the event’……Shame to a Bank that was so willing to enter the Irish Financial Services Centre….yes, those London based and American based High Risk Takers who for years received the benefits of favourable balance sheets, elitist salaries, corporate tax (lowest in Europe), bonuses for a cache of ‘smart’ risk taking members of staff. It is these bankers that are selling short on the UK presently and changing tax residence to Switzerland – in particular those hedge fund risk takers. Brian Lenihan, and your head in your hands! Hold on tight. Markets are so unpredictable and Destiny alone knows what will be the outcome.
Jonathan Swift, Dean of St. Patrick’s in the 16th century was a quite exceptional man, a man of the Cloth, a satirist, a writer, a philanthropist, a philosopher. At this time, certain Irish people and those in our media are chanting doom, gloom and catastrophe and I ask at what cost to the Ireland that exists today, Sunday October 3rd, 2010? Do not let people talk us down! We are, we have failed perhaps, but also we can learn, we can move on with an internal focus for growth through areas like tourism, knowledge economy, research and development with new dimensions.
Jonathan Swift and one quote I wholly believe in said ‘Give Vision to the Visionless’. He did, we can today witness Trinity College, St.Patrick’s Cathedral and most important, similar to Bedlam Hospital in the UK, St. Patrick’s Psychiatric Hospital.  A person who is depressed will have many people come to them and feed in what they perceive as positive. The truth is that they too are fearful, scared and anxious about the uncertainty. Dean Swift recognised this in a depressive but let this depressed person be the microcosm of the depressed and recession beaten Ireland and let us start taking action to encourage our country back to full health.
Let not the EU or the IMF make us feel ashamed. Let us ask the question why the EU who assumed the role of our Central Bank when we joined the Euro 10 years ago assume some of the blame for the interest rate crisis. It is possible that if we remained under our own central bank control, we would have raised our interest rates to encourage overseas investors to invest more.  Haughey and Desmond were men of vision in relation to the Financial Services centre – it was about stepping stones and opportunities. The scales of justice and positive versus negative is still out to tender and it is up to the people and citizens of Ireland to grasp the nettle and persevere.
Quotation: Appropriately let us opt for Protestantism austerity – frugal existence and careful expenditure.
Wealth
‘God grants wealth to those coarse asses to whom HE gives nothing else’ Martin Luther (1483-1546) German rebel theologian, opposed to the corruption and abusive power of the Catholic Church.

Date: Tuesday 5th October 2010 17:09:24 +0100
From: Michelle Clarke
To: Infowars Ireland

Tuesday 5th October 2010

Olli Rehn European Economic and Monetary Affairs Commissioner said
that it was “a fact of life” that Irish taxes would have to move into line
with tax rates elsewhere in the Eurozone’
by Michelle Clarke
While the tax remains a “sovereign issue”, Olli Rehn, the European Economic and Monetary Affairs Commissioner, was quoted as saying that it was “a fact of life” that Irish taxes would have to move into line with tax rates elsewhere in the Eurozone’….and what if Olli Rehn says it is a “fact of life”, the reality is, to the people of Ireland, it is a “Sovereign issue”.  Yes we are a casualty of the Celtic Tiger but why would the EU Commissioner attempt to add further injury to a country that who suffers as a consequence of the global banking crisis which gave rise to a housing bubble. Business Scotsman http://www.scotsman.com/business is correct when it states that the 12.5% corporation tax was a key element to our country’s industrial policy and it was this initiative that helped to rebuild the economy in the late 1980’s. The Celtic Tiger had a sprint followed by a few more sprints but then that is the nature of the ‘Tiger’
… bomb in Derry and RIRA….what about the Peace Process? Bill Clinton,former President of the US made a visit to the Island of Ireland last week to endorse and give credence to what has been achieved. We are part of EU yes but we are Sovereign also. We relate to the US and we relate to the UK (particularly when one considers our currency is Sterling in one part of this Island of Ireland). We have our options open and we must be resolute that the EU do not ‘abuse power’ and honour our involvement as a contributor to the EU since we joined in 1973. Let us not forget that the Lisbon Treaty at first vote referendum yielded a ‘No’ vote and EU pressure forced us to hold the second Referendum thats secured the ‘Yes’ vote. No – it is not for the EU Authorities to dictate that we backtrack and increase our Corporation Tax from 12.5%.  Our Government and people face a strict austerity programme as applies to other members of the EU, the US, and the UK. The task is to increase tax revenue and reduce public spending – the simple balance sheet i.e.income versus expense = public debt (which approaches 32% of GDP). We need to tap all resources to maximum potential and this includes our ‘waters’.  Our sea is part of the hidden treasure.
War (let us say economic!)
‘When the rich wage war, it’s the poor who die’ Jean-Paul Sartre (1905-80) French writer and philosopher

 

Subject: Article published Infowars Ireland: Osmosis
Date: 14th October 2010 16:27:03 +0100
From: Michelle Clarke
To: Undisclosed list

14th October 2010

INFOWARS: 


One Response to “Hundreds of MEP’s who took a £350,000 ‘study break’ to Madeira”

by Michelle Clarke

Some 250 MEPs, 80 parliamentary assistants and 70 civil servants working for European’s Peoples Party took off on Tuesday to the holiday island for a three-day trip to Madeira at a cost of 350,000 euros. Are we alarmed or should we ignore the cost and focus on the ‘qualitative’ potential that may arise? Personally, I hope that a change of scene and air, creates an imaginative approach to embrace the impact of this harrowing economic recession that applies globally. It should be exciting to have 250 MEPs, 80 p.a.’s and 70 civil servants convene and communicate on the decided ‘study break’. There is nothing like brainstorming especially if the outcome is followed up on when they return to their posts. The ripple effect of these numbers is phenomenal but let us notify the MEPs of what we the members of the EU think, believe and want discussed. The internet makes this a possibility. A little history about a leader and his impact is worth positing.

August 1927 introduced the New Era in the US but therein existed a twist. President Coolidge said ‘I do not choose to run for President in 1928′. When he left office he elaborated that he had no illusions about what the presidency did to men – ‘it is difficult for men in high office to avoid the malady of self-delusion….they are always surrounded by worshipers….it’s a pretty good idea to get out when they still want you”.

This is quite profound particularly at a time that the nations of Europe need Leaders and particularly those who value corporate governance. The outcome in the US in 1928 was for the Republicans to start the stampede for the nomination of one aspirant who was deemed exceptional at the time – it was Herbert Hoover.

Hoover (1874) was born in rural Iowa, his parents died when he was young and he was reared by his uncle. He attended (tuition-free) Stanford University where he met his wife, Lou Henry, who majored in geology. He graduated in 1885 and launched a career in engineering … he became an expert in mining technology and management. Between 1902-1907, he traveled the world no less than 5 times and his wealth was $4 million. Money satisfied one desire but it was not enough. In 1914 he became involved in the relief effort to supply Belgium then occupied, with food. When the US entered WW1, Hoover sought and received the new post of US Food Administrator. This involved harnessing food resources to meet war time needs.

Now I suppose you are asking why I mention this about a Study Event for 3 days in Madeira. This is a time to be treasured for its potential to be creative. I mention the name Hoover because most likely everyone has one to one contact with the web and all they have to do is search. A feature of Hoover’s philosophy and style involved national conferences because it is an opportunity to get the best minds together to generate data leading to solutions. David Burner observed about Hoover ‘Hoover suffocated problems with solutions – if one did not work, another would’.

We need a New Era in the Island of Ireland and in the context of the European Union. We need Leaders and it is an individual choice in these recessionary times to listen, input and hear what is being said and having a voice. The options exist. If people cannot afford a computer, libraries exist and computer access is free. The EU office in Dawson Street is worth a visit for a broad range of leaflets and data, in hard copy. Networking is here to stay, we can look to leaders in different times and be inspired. We need hope.

Michelle Clarke

Quotation
Incitement
‘There is something that governments care for far more than human life, and that is the security of property, and so it through property that we shall strike the enemy…Be militant each in your own way.

And my last word to this Government: I incite this meeting to rebellion…..Take me if you dare.
Emmeline Pankhurst (1858-1928) English Suffragist and campaigner for women’s votes and rights

 


Date: Tuesday 19th October 2010 11:50:00 +0100
From: Michelle Clarke
To: Michelle Clarke <michelleclarke@upcmail.ie>, Shane.Ross@oireachtas.ie <Shane.Ross@oireachtas.ie>,

Tuesday 19th October 2010

What an interesting article!

The economy is in economic and social crisis and yet we have catchphrases that are prompts to say we are a ‘Smart’ economy, we are a ‘knowledge economy’, we are 12.5% corporation tax economy and we have been a success story in Europe in attracting Foreign Direct Investment but the big question for us today and especially when we read the article from the Belfast Telegraph (Island of Ireland coverage) we must ask the question who in communications have been sitting on their laurels? We all know about the importance of the internet.

Do you know that 70% of the UK adult population are now online…the internet is part of everyday life for people, it also plays a key role as a tool to improve the lives of people and communities. An interesting point is that 9 million people in the UK are not online but most alarming is that 4 m of these are some of the country’s most socially excluded and the barriers are both social and economic.

Do we know the figures in Ireland? We ought to. Ireland is that small open economy that needs to be online with the most competitive coverage and broadband speeds. We talk about unemployment rising rapidly yet if you live in the supposedly hub areas of the city of Dublin what is distinctly obvious is that places like the FAS headoffice in Upper Baggot Street show no signs of initiative, creativity, ambition to earmark unemployed people to a premises that quite evidently has plenty of space and start training programmes for internet usage.  I note the job centre in Adelaide Road, at least is attempting to do something along these lines as is St. Anne’s Church in Dawson Street. They say Justice needs to be seen to be done…well let us add to this that semi-states who claim to provide jobs for people are now called upon to be SEEN promoting people to gain skills (young to old, young perhaps teaching old or old mentoring young people) from what is supposed to be a hub.

The title of the Belfast Telegraph article ‘Finding a common language in the internet world’… well when better, when our economy is faltering, to focus on up-skilling our people and broadening the work specification range, to create hope for the future. We need a fully networked nation. We have the scenery, the people, the weather, we have potential for media production and films, for history expression, and a genealogy that his accessible for the 40 m Irish diaspora to explore if they choose to visit our country.

However, we must have the internet and the broadband coverage. We need an online week in the South of Ireland also to match the North. The blame game needs to be put to bed and we need to give people in our semi-states a second opportunity (possibly third) to leave their havens, come up with ideas and give us space in their locations to access new skills. It often fascinates me why Baggot Street FAS office is so under utilised – in the days when the Europeans came to Ireland, they used the FAS offices but we don’t seem to….Why? FAS to put it mildly, as we all know, in recent times has not lived up to expectations and before the departure of the infamous Roddy Molloy FAS had a taxpayers check of 1 billion euros, with no questions asked. Thanks to people like Shane Ross and others they have exposed the vast waste, the corruption, the multi-thousands spent on offshore holidays and dinners around the Dublin 4 area – menu being Thai, and now the taxpayer asking Why? Now FAS luckily for all of us is under, we are led to believe, the watchful eye of no less than 4 different ministers and yet there is still scams being exposed in courses e.g. the authenticity of certificates.

FAS led by people with transparency could have a great potential in using internet and web facilities e.g. evening classes in liaison with the VEC and our national libraries – o yes, the potential is there but I wonder and ask is the Motivation the problem? I also want to highlight one section of the Telegraph that is a problem: It is our retired citizens who did not grow up with the internet e.g. retired doctors, dentists, the old establishment now in their mid to late 70’s and beyond. These people sadly have a deep fear of what they don’t know and I believe our young people, FAS and other government agencies and even their grand-children, have a role to play in helping them to overcome that fear.

The internet is a channel to reach out to a bigger picture and we all have that potential and age should never be a barrier.

by Michelle Clarke

Quotation

Rewards

‘The salary of the Chief Executive of the large corporations is not a market reward for achievement. It is frequently in the nature of a warm personal gesture by an individual to himself….’

JK Galbraith (1878-1937) US Humourist and Journalist


Subject: Infowars Article: European Governance (Mr. Banks). Reply from Michelle Clarke
Date: Friday 22nd Oct 2010 13:09:17 +0100
From: Michelle Clarke
To: arthur.morgan@oireachtas.ie <arthur.morgan@oireachtas.ie>

Friday 22nd October 2010

Infowars Ireland article:  European Governance (Mr Banks)
by Michelle Clarke
EU Commissioner Olli Rehn….
‘The EPP http://www.epp.eu/ group, he said, welcomed proposals tabled by a taskforce headed by European Council President, Herman Van Rompuy, which calls for a strict sanctions system for those member states that don’t respect the criteria set out in the stability pact’

The article by Mr. Banks is most interesting but for a small open economy like Ireland, who are now no longer part of the 27 countries, we need to ‘stand tall’ and seek corporate governance standards that indicate to Europe we will appoint our own task force and impose our own sanctions on those (when their case files can be processed through the DPP) who will stand accountable for the abuse of power within our economic markets (this is where our housing bubble diverted from the Global economic crisis).

The EEC, former President Hillery had the foresight to enter Europe Union. This generation of people, who were already involved in the League of Nations, had a vision. The question: have we lost the vision or will we take responsibility as Irish citizens to address the corruption that has left us in jeopardy with the EU and challenged by the need to draw down funds from the Stability Pact ahead of the other errant economies, the ‘PIGS’?

Sean Barrett, Trinity College, spoke on Prime Time RTE programme last night about whether it is necessary for our economy to spend further on capital expenditure re. infrastructure and linkages to the airport. My impression of what he said is that this capital expenditure is not an urgent consideration and we have the option to hold off. Now here is a saving and a decision to be made.

Deflation, stagnation, economic growth strangled: We need to be alert here and there is a good example of what happened to Japan in the 1980’s in the New York Times. I will quote:

‘Osaka, Japan, like many members of Japan’s middle class, Massato Y….was a small business owner, bought a $500,000 condominium, vacationed in Hawaii and drove a late model mercedes’ (i.e. 1980’s……) but his living standards slowly crumbled along with Japan’s overall economy. First he reduced his trips abroad to the point of elimination, then the cheaper modes domestic car was his only option. Last year he had to sell his condo for a third of the price he bought it for….therefore he still owes a mortgage which he took out 17 years ago. So he is a man with realised negative equity.

The same applied to many people caught by the 1980’s/1990’s recession in the UK….some took the option of putting their keys through the letter box and just walking away.

The article goes on to say that Japan was one of the few nations to see such a reversal of economic fortune – it rode high on the great speculative stock and property bubbles in the 1980’s. It was the first Asian economy to challenge the dominance of the left.

What happened is what is happening in Ireland? It is fear in the rawest form. People who have money/wealth/income are afraid to spend in the economy. They are saving their money or else those with wealth are targeting safer markets overseas either in deposits, commodities or currency choices. The guarantees that apply presently to the banks have been extended but the question is how long will these guarantees apply?

The decisions and impetus rest with the citizens of Ireland, young people and old, and inclusive. We need to spend small amounts e.g. take a taxi instead of a bus on the odd occasion, buy Irish, support our charity shops — all of these keep cash circulating in our community.

The NTMA banks on influx of 3 bn. to post office savings schemes this year. This reduces the amount that Ireland needs to borrow on financial markets. We need to bear in mind that when the Guarantees no longer exist, people will see an outflow of funds, mainly to do with fear, justifiable or not, as funds move to safer options which can be post office savings/prize bonds/national loan stock or abroad (this is what we do not want to facilitate)

We do not want to follow the route of Japan: (we need tourists from Japan realistically)

Final quote from article in New York Times:

‘But the bubbles popped in the late 1980’s and early 1990’s and Japan fell into a slow and relentless decline that neither enormous budget deficits nor a flood of easy money has reversed. For nearly a generation now, the nation has been trapped in low growth and a corrosive spiral of prices, known as DEFLATION, in the process of shriveling from an economic Godzilla to littler more than an afterthought in the global economy’.

 

Michelle Clarke


Subject: Infowars Ireland:

Germany’s view on the e750 bn EU/IMF bailout fund by Michelle Clarke

Date: Thu, 28 Oct 2010 20:37:24 +0100
From: Michelle Clarke
To: Undisclosed address list

28th October 2010

‘But it is Germany’s views on the €750bn EU/IMF bailout fund, and whether or not member states’ voting rights could be suspended in the event of repeated breaches of the rules, which has brought the Lisbon Treaty back in to the frame, to the horror of some governments’.

There is something a little unbalanced here and in particular relating to Ireland. Ireland, in good faith joined the Eurozone. Ireland likewise yielded her prior standing with the second vote (gentle persuasion) of the Lisbon Treaty vote. Yet a near unprecedented economic crisis determines significant change with the main players the Germans and the French mooting change to the fabric of the Lisbon Treaty.

Ireland is vulnerable, it is more exposed than other countries (relating to an exceptional housing bubble and bubbles). Yet, it is a time of crisis and the people of our Nation State need to become aware of what is happening at the so-called political/academic level. Grassroots media is now core to peoples’ lives and this means people can engage at a deeper level with the so-called “Knowledge” economy promoted particularly by the EU.

Tomorrow is the EU summit: Prime Minister David Cameron will be confronted with a potential change to the EU Treaties. He most likely will be asked for an increased contribution to the EU’s 2011 budget. The ensuing issue will be whether a referendum will be called for in the UK. This in effect would mean a repatriation of powers back to Britain. What does this mean for Ireland; and what is the impact to the Island of Ireland?

Some key points from http://openeurope.org.uk think tank ….

The budget: assume that Cameron is forced to accept a 2.9% increase in the budget, the impact of this in an already austerity compacted Britain would mean that UK taxpayers would be forced to pay roughly £430 million extra for the EU budget. For the Island of Ireland, we need to consider the impact of this North of the border.

Economic Governance: Ireland is massively exposed here. We have little contribution to this debate because we are offenders! The UK government has said it will support proposals for stronger economic governance. They favour sanctions for countries which violate the EU’s budget’s rules. However the UK will not be subject to sanctions. The Eurozone may gain from fiscal discipline but to achieve Single Currency effectiveness the problem of huge differences in competitiveness within the Eurozone needs urgent attention.

Ireland joined the Eurozone with conditions. We relinquished powers re. interest rates. Interest rates are a significant tool when trying to curb an overheating property market. The decision that was previously with the Central Bank (and which the UK still hold onto i.e. Stg) is now with the EU. It is not unreasonable to say that Ireland may have been able to curb the economic destruction viz a viz property if ordinary market forces of supply and demand increased the rates of interest to levels that stopped the property market from over-heating.

The quote is not about revolution but more about experience and learning….

Quotation Faith

‘I began revolution with 82 men. If I had to do it again, I’d do it with 10 or 15 and absolute faith’

Fidel Castro (born 1926) Cuban Revolutionary who ousted President Batista in 1959


 

ate: Tuesday, 02 November 2010 21:41:24 +0000
From: Michelle Clarke
To: Undisclosed address list

Tueday November 2nd 2010

 

Comment on Ron Paul’s economic advisor Peter Schiff speaking at several events in Kilkenny this month by Michelle Clarke

‘What If

What happens if the banks collapse? What happens if a country defaults? What happens if you change your currency? What happens if you don’t repay bond holders? What would the IMF actually do here? What if nothing happens? What if nothing changes? In looking down the barrel, ‘What If?’ looks at the precedent of what actually happens when Armageddon strikes’ Let it not be more despair!!!

Where are the maybe’s, the possibilities, the hope? Let our learned economists make assessments and predictions but let them use a broad spectrum interconnected with mystery and hope, ingenuity and scope. What if the IMF intervene? Why not if this creates a trajectory of people who can restore marketability, credibility, and a sound banking system that can once again compete at a global level. Take an extreme and add to this: What if?

A true and proper evaluation and valuation of our natural resources is negotiated by say the IMF and by this I mean a re-assessment of that fatal offer made to Shell and its involvement in the Corrib when Ireland, while on the ‘backfoot’ and recession bound in the 1980’s opted for a dud deal when we could have followed the example of Norway. (The Norwegians secured a deal for their oil that provided income and pension cover for years going forward …. while we played the part of Cinderella who never gets to the Ball).

So the IMF is a possibility but what if we have a change of Government as has happened in the UK. Will this restore a sense of confidence in the Irish people and effect a positive change …. Right now, in the political arena Ireland is in a very weak position. We have a lame duck government that is trying to promote a 4 year plan and the people are not taking it on board because the scent of a General Election is in the air and this in itself weakens the credibility of not just the Government but the Irish people as a whole in trying to get ourselves into a position to borrow again at the same level as Germany and this will and cannot happen without a new alternative government with a proper mandate and a nation with some sense of confidence.

We need to ask why we are assessed for such risk that merits the charge to Ireland at 5% more than Germany pays for the same loans. Is this Eurozone Equality for the PIGS and Ireland? Today, as he departed from the Dail, after 21 years as a TD and Minister, Jim McDaid, former FF, fired another volley of shots into the lame duck government of FF and the Greens and even McDaid had the common sense, maybe even at this late stage, to shout WE NEED A GENERAL ELECTION. Now I am not saying that Kenny and Gilmore would make much of a difference and I put more focus on Gilmore, in a critical sense, a Labour politician who earns along with his profile wife Mrs. Hanney a total annual income of 350,000 plus euros p.a. so I would like someone to define the word in context the words socialist labour to the people of Ireland.

Yes, as an Irish Citizen I do believe there is money i.e. billions still concealed in this country and even in Swiss Bank accounts etc. as well as hard core assets, commodities, reserves, artistic works and even devalued properties with unknown potentialities. We are in at present a grave situation and the forthcoming budget has to in a moral sense start cutting from the top i.e. public servants and from those earning of say 80,000 euros with some focus on the 1% wealth source.

Our markets lack confidence of the people due possibly to the weak Government in power and this is why our people are not spending. We need to inject money (even utilising the credit union system that has worked so well in the past). 2016 approaches, we still have Film Incentives and tax concessions so let us persevere constructively. For those who live in the City for example, shop local, take the bus rather than the car, even the train and use the taxi services. Keep money flowing in the economy increasing the supply so that people will have the confidence to generate economic growth once again. It has been done before.

To the legal friends of our economists I would say refer to the case 1950 AG v. Comyn.

Quotation Shell on Trial

‘I and my colleagues here are not the one ones on Trial. She is here on trial…the company has indeed ducked this particular trial, but its day will surely come.

Ken Saro Wiwa (1941-95)

Nigerian writer and activist, leader of the Ogoni people who were protesting against Shell’s exploration on their land, environmental destruction and human-rights abuses. Saro Wiwa was executed with eight others by the Nigerian Govt.


Sunday 7th November 2010

Procrastination and High Interest Rates
by Michelle Clarke

Has Ireland been ‘desperately unlucky’ or maybe we have procrastinated to such a degree that that we are now in the category of ‘stolen’ time and we are paying a high price in interest rates…rates that could continue to rise!

UCD professor Karl Whelan, a former Fed economist is reported to have said there is a “reasonably high probability” that Ireland will have to turn to the tutelage of the EU-IMF “even though this will be resisted until the bitter end as a horrible humiliation”. Ireland has a bond crisis that is ‘snowballing out of control’ but there is a positive, we have a pension fund that if we really hit dire circumstances we can activate as a safeguard but sadly as so often in history happens at the cost of those who have built up pension funds both at a personal level and institutional level.

It is said:- ‘What you focus on expands’ and in Ireland’s case, this appears to be so: Moral bankruptcy, corruption, bribery, dishonesty are words that did not just appear with the Collapse of Lehman brothers in 2008. The truth is in Ireland we have nurtured dishonesty and moral bankruptcy for decades. The Proclamation, Independence, the Republic, the Peace Process with the supposedly protective mantle of the Church has dealt a culture of denial.

The truth is, we have a faltering Separation of Powers and we need to address our Sovereignty status before we lose it to what is fast becoming a two-tier Eurozone. The choice is that of the people. We can embrace this murky culture, challenge it and arraign those who are responsible for taking us to our knees. We need to accept ‘front-loading’ and aim at a draconian cut of 7 bn. euros for year 1. Yes Ireland is running out of time but we need serious creative thinking, that of the calibre often used by a criminal to start tackling those who have breached the moral code and created a sinking abyss from a country that has potential.

Where do we start? An integral and essential is the creativity of the mind as applied to Justice and Ethics. The importance of Honesty among the Judiciary is critical. In 2009 a reporter referred to the qualities of the judiciary, in a country that is supposedly democratic, and that they ought to be above reproach. Mr. Justice Johnson (retiring) spoke about ‘Honesty’ and the law and indicated that members of the judiciary were not above reproach.

To take a step back in time, a Judge in the 1940’s said the most important quality for a Judge was firstly to be a good lawyer and then to have a solid knowledge of the law. To me, this is common sense but common sense has become driftwood in the aftermath of the Celtic Tiger. But what has happened to common sense and the law. Does anyone speak of the Mahon Tribunal these days? When will we have a conclusion and when will we stop paying these massive salaries to legal beagles who know ‘what their best interest is’ yes ‘go slow’ get paid more.

Our Commercial Courts are the new order of the Decade? Where is the money coming from? We need to cut our Cloth according to its Measure but this doesn’t mean the middle class and near impoverished, as well as the elderly. The decision needs to be made, and the ‘sterling qualities of expertise and genius’ needs to be tapped, with persuasion to forego income and wealth in line with a just and fair society.

Do people really take account of the number of solicitors being struck off the rolls? You occasionally hear the name but there is no significant emphasis on a professional ‘doing something that is illegal’. There is a kind of sympathy extended to them, it is part of that paternalism that is invoked by being a member of a profession. Lynn owes 80 m and rising no doubt. People claim to have met him in Europe but when they query it, they are told it is difficult to charge him. What does this mean? I know law is not retrospective but surely there are enough precedents in Law to charge for fraud, deception, etc. etc. Did Lynn suffer a massive loss in his 80 m with the collapse of Lehman Brothers in the US September 12 months ago? Well, we all know that Madoff the Pyramid ‘conman’ is now in his seventies in jail for life….thanks to the Federal system of law in America. Apparently he is sharing a bunk bed with a real gangster!

The US have not been ‘sitting on their hands’ since the collapse of Lehmans. No they have been thinking and acting. People have been held accountable and fast tracked through the legal processes and placed in prison as criminals. There is none of this ‘white’ collar ‘blue collar’ categorisation in the US – Enron proved that. Also countries like Switzerland, the Bahamas, yes the Tax Havens are under serious threat. 5,000 names of US Swiss Bank holders are to have their names released to the US revenue and there is a potential for some 50,000 more greedy people to have their names released.

Who knows what this will in effect do to capital markets – it will cause an injection to the EU, Britain, the US, to a lesser degree Japan, China, Asia. It is going to be a really interesting dynamic. Nobody could predict the Lehman crisis but now that it has happened transparency and accountability is the battle cry so let the masses pay heed and vocalise the need to source taxes from those who have failed to pay in the last decade and who seek to remain tax exiles yet own major businesses in IRELAND. I admire O’Leary of Ryanair on two scores. In the 1980s when the recession was really bad, he saw an opportunity and he gave emigrants very cheap travel to other countries for work and secondly, he can jest about his view of politicians because he pays considerable tax in Ireland and lives in the Country. Reporter: This is a good posting. Have you any more detail about this retiring Judge and his views on the Judiciary?

by Michelle Clarke


Subject: Email to Howard Hughes Medical Institute 2010 Annual Report Innovation … Research……let us create the environment urgently and generate hope
Date: Thursday 11th November 2010 17:08:51
From: Michelle Clarke
To: KEARNEY Tim <TimKearney@transport.ie>, Patricia.REILLY@ec.europa.eu <Patricia.REILLY@ec.europa.eu>, Minister of State Cuffe’s Office <MinisterCuffe@transport.ie>, colm.mccarthy@ucd.ie et al

http://www.hhmi.org/annualreport2010/

Why can we not piggy back on Innovation and Research programmes similar to this http://www.hhmi.org/annualreport2010/ and that of John Hopkins Psychiatry and establish a fully utilised building e.g. Baggot Street Community hospital i.e. midway between our two major universities (Trinity College Dublin and UCD).  Transport 21/Transport is using its initiative and the No. 10 bus has been put to pasture.  Now we have buses crossing the city from Castleknock to the Grand Canal, from Ongar to UCD.

Neuro-Psychiatry – addictions need  central base.  We need the bodies in this area to put their heads together and Unite (NDA; EI; FAS; HRB; Mental Health Commission and all the rest including pharmaceutical companies in Dublin 4)….to create a space for people who need support and recovery.  Let us look to Maire Geoghegan Quinn in Europe for direction, and input.  We need some serious urban renewal – we need to make decisions about Supply and Demand and property.  Demolish the ghost estates that will never be completed and accept our mistakes – make them portals of discovery.  One more point:  getting bloods taken at St Vincents, you will see a notice a poster on the wall …. for the year 2008 3,500,000 euros approx. is the cost of appointments re. people who fail to turn up.  Why?

Quotation:
Feast and Famine
Petra Kelly (1947-1992)
‘We cannot have a feast on global resources while the world’s poor struggle to survive on inhospitable lands.  It is as simple as that.
It is the rich who are making the world poorer.  Environment and poverty are one crisis, not two
Petral Kelly (1947-1992) German Green Politician

Michelle adds:  Ireland does not want to be the victim of a two-tier Eurozone just because we are one of the first countries to encounter economic problems.  (Brought on by blind greed and cronyism and deserters from a sinking ship)


Date: Monday 22nd November 2010 14:07:09
From: Michelle Clarke
To: Uncertain if this was sent to address list

An Election appears to be the only route open?

The Bail Out? Will the election postpone the impetus of the IMF Eurogroup ‘bailout’ until a new Government is in place?  Ireland is a product of a major global banking crisis with a specific housing bubble scenario. This is what the economists, financiers and people tell us!
The people on the Island of Ireland need to take stock – each citizen needs to create their own adaptation of a balance sheet and work out how severe the budget will be, the impact and then find ‘miracles’.
Example: Greencore decades ago was a privatised and investors lost money. Sugar beat was grown in Ireland and then it was not. Now the EU question the decision to move away from growing sugar beat in Ireland and then Northern Foods merge with Greencore http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greencore. Add to this the following dimension per the Sunday Times: Heading ‘Norway buys big chunk of Greencore’ (yes, a merger and acquisition scenario).  The article goes on to say that the ‘oil rich state of Norway has taken a stake in the soon to be merged Greencore and Northern Foods giant. The Country’s 360 bn euro wealth fund, pumped up by billions in North Sea Oil revenues has revealed that it owns 4.1 million shares in the company or a near 2% stake’ and possibly more.
You say why is this relevant?  Well, consider our natural resources and refer to the Corrib scandal and Shell http://www.shelltosea.com/content/pipe-down-new-documentary-corrib-gas-project In the 1970’s we had the advice of the Norwegians but we chose our own route and now they have the outcome of successful guidance and impetus while we have sold our natural resources for nothing but a fraction of what they are worth. Can we make change and can we have as wealth fund?
by Michelle Clarke

 

Subject: Comment on Irish Bailout won’t work says New York Times by Michelle Clarke. While people march our Government are on the brink of making a decison. Pat Rabbitte is on the radio and he says we have no yet got the details. Think before Action please
Date: Sunday 28th November 2010 13:17:32
From: Michelle Clarke
To: blucey@tcd.ie, Contact <contact@tascnet.ie>, Constantin Gurdgiev <gurdgiev@gmail.com>, Eamon Gilmore <eamon.gilmore@labour.ie>, joan.burton@oireachtas.ie <joan.burton@oireachtas.ie>, alan.shatter@oireachtas.ie, Alex.White@Oireachtas.ie <Alex.White@Oireachtas.ie>, Stephen Booth <stephen@openeurope.org.uk>, Pearse.Doherty@Oireachtas.ie <Pearse.Doherty@Oireachtas.ie>

27th November 2010

Comment on Irish Bailout won’t work says New York Times

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/11/22/business/global/22debt.html

‘Delay…Default…Negotiate’….. sums up the position of three people and differing views from a foreign perspective on the Irish situation on the Thursday night TV3 Vincent Browne programme.

Markets are unpredictable by their nature. How do we set parameters, become a precedent core to the integrated Europe we signed up for? Negotiation is part of the Irish DNA…the Peace Process surely counts for something?

Surely as stated by Moore McDowell on RTE lunchtime programme the ‘powers that be in the EU group and the IMF ‘can take a view from the Versaille Treaty and realise you ‘cannot take blood from a stone’…. I say we need a little more time.

Tomorrow Sunday is a deadline about making a decision so that we can exclude the market turmoil factor that we are guaranteed as Markets start on Monday. In Ireland we must speculate (this deal is created from risk, and is risk) so why not speculate by saying…we will take our risk with the markets but we are not satisfied with the proposed game plan, and in particular the higher interest rates, as the agreement states. We are prepared to be isolationist, a potential precedent and we want to see what happens with Brussels, Athens, Madrid, Portugal and therein the 16 countries in the Eurozone. The Germans and the French are making shapes based on their ‘power’ but this does not necessarily mean they have reached the correct resolution and are acting in the best interests of Ireland and the Island of Ireland.

It may be a wild suggestion but having lived in Zimbabwe where local currency devalued massively, those that could, started operating in hard currencies. I was at a museum library yesterday and I noticed in the contribution box some sterling notes. Is this an option for us in Ireland? Could we just re-introduce Sterling prices? Some of our large stores accept different currencies in exchange for Punts. We have been here before in 1978.

Up to You
‘You must be the change you want to see in the world’
MK Gandhi (1969-48)


Subject: “Taoiseach faces anger over ‘selling Ireland down the river’”,, ‘Delay…Default…Negotiate’….. sums up the position of three people and differing views from a foreign perspective on the Irish situation on the Thursday night TV3 Vincent Browne programme’. Now it is Tuesday 30th November 2010.
Date: Tue, 30 Nov 2010 17:09:16 +0000
From: Michelle Clarke
To: Vincent Browne <vincent.browne@tv3.ie>, taoiseach@taoiseach.gov.ie, SylviaLynam@dast.gov.ie <SylviaLynam@dast.gov.ie>, susan.tucker@ec.europa.eu, Shane.Ross@oireachtas.ie <Shane.Ross@oireachtas.ie>

No Responses to:   “Taoiseach faces anger over ‘selling Ireland down the river”

‘Delay…Default…Negotiate’….. sums up the position of three people and differing views from a foreign perspective on the Irish situation on the Thursday night TV3 Vincent Browne programme’. Now it is Tuesday 30th November 2010.

Yes, there is anger and rightly so: Today we hear the news that Minister for Justice, Mr. Ahern, is retiring with pension and that he had informed our Taoiseach Mr. Brian Cowen of his intention in October 2010. What does this say? Mr. Ahern has notified the people of a medical diagnosis of rheumatoid arthritis and Mr. Brian Lenihan, our chief negotiating officer has notified the public of his medical diagnosis of pancreatic cancer. This scares me, as I am sure it would do any other person battling with illness. (Also the three players all are from the legal profession).

The core team who have negotiated on the part of the Irish people this unacceptable 85 billion (113-billion-dollar) bailout with penalty interest rates of 5.8% interest rates have to be below par to say the least (due to the grounds of ill-health). Their continued representation as a core of three main players does nothing other than undermine what illness is about and re-iterates what narcissism and ego is about. I don’t wish to be cruel to the men concerned but surely at a time of such crisis since the formation of the State, these men would have deferred to those more capable but then perhaps I am naive about what Politics is about.

‘The draconian measures sparked mass protests in Dublin on Saturday and many people digesting the news of the bailout in the Irish capital on Monday were clearly angry’ and yes, the people have a right to express this anger by marching. It is the reporting of the march that I question. Media moguls who are tax exiles concern me. I refer to the Independent (IN) and Sir Tony O’Reilly. Who has the final say about what goes to print? We know by virtue of what is reported and what is intentionally left out. The march concluded at the GPO and having arrived late, I missed most of the people but was surprised by the transparency of the Corrib-Shell related groups and their posters. Sir Tony O’Reilly/Independent newspapers has a vested interest, I suspect regarding oil (refer Providence Oil) and I was equally surprised that there was no coverage about Shell-Corrib position reported in the newspapers. One banner quite clearly stated that our natural resource value of 500 bn euros was squandered in Government negotiation. The figure may be pie in the sky but there is some sense to reviewing the deal with Shell (in line with what the Norwegians negotiated in the 1970′s/80′s). This ought to be a priority for the EU-IMF consortium to deal with and make provision for. Oil and our waters are part of our deck of cards….or have our leaders forgotten this?

Can we stop ‘this selling Ireland down the river’? When is D-Day for the plain people of Ireland? We are told that our corporation tax of 12.5% is part of the deal yet the news this afternoon states, that the French and the Germans are now saying no. They deem this to be unfair and that there should be uniformity in the corporation tax rate. Why are they (the Germans and the French) permitted to back-track within a week? What is their problem? We are an island, part of the Island of Ireland, we are exposed to a geographic spread of a euro currency area and a sterling area. If the UK agree to the 12.5% corporation tax rate, and the EU-IMF agreed to same as part of the 85 billion euros deal, then why so soon this dissent?

The Power of the Book. To the plain people of Ireland I would say, look out for hope, look out for knowledge, look to our literature and take time out to visit our book shops, our libraries and seek enlightenment. A book I can highly recommend is called Open Dissent by Michael Soden. This man has experience at a globalised level and is learned in his trade of being a banker. Mr. Soden left the Bank of Ireland in May 2004. At the time he left, the Bank of Ireland group, with a history of 221 years: the single largest loan loss experienced was 25 million euros.   Where did all the extra noughts appear between then and 6 years later now.

Ireland is a small open economy/English speaking. We have a diaspora who have supported us and in particular the UK and the US. We saw an opportunity and we took it and we introduced the 12.5% rate of tax and per consequence have an entrenched US presence in Ireland. Do we want to lose this support? We need to ask the IMF contingent of the IMF-EU group to speak up for us.

Quotation
The Future
‘The Future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams’
Eleanor Roosevelt (1882-1945) US Diplomat and first lady


Subject: Infowars Ireland: One Response to “Fitzpatrick and Drumm to face accountancy tribunal”
Date: Tue, 21 Dec 2010 21:55:36 +0000
From: Michelle Clarke
To: Labour Web Team <web.team@labour.ie>, The FrontLine Audience <TheFrontLineAudience@rte.ie>

21st December 2010

“Fitzatrick and Drumm to face accountancy tribunal”

  • Social scientist, Erving Goffman argues that stigma is intimately associated with stereotype. Stigma is the study of situations where the normal and abnormal meet.

    In Ireland, we have the new category of stereotype, the Nama contingent, the Anglo Irish quotient, members of the legal profession who got greedy and who blatantly embezzled funds; those who engage in the black economy; those who own wealth and pay no taxes in Ireland; the shrewd politicians who run up inordinate expenses without conscience and who benefit from pension funds that are a far cry from a meritocracy.

    Yes, we have the stereotype but somehow these people are inured from the stigma of shame. Prime Time on RTE 1 last night clearly reported that stigma does not apply to the stereotype developers under the NAMA umbrella. Where is the legislation? If you divorce, both parties must outline their assets so that the Judge adjudicates. Yet it was reported that certain developers used lacunae in the law which permitted them to transfer their assets to their spouses (predominantly wives) with no tax implications.

    We cannot accept this recklessness in our political and legal representatives. This makes one law for one category and a completely different and often inequitable law for the other category. The least we deserve is clarification from the Justice Department on this point of fact and point of law.

    Today, Fine Gael Press Office released a Statement from Justice Spokesman, Alan Shatter who demands that Minister Ahern explain the indefensible delay in the prosecution of Mr. Lynn and Mr. Byrne. It further outlines the following:-

    ‘Lynn was struck off on the 23rd May 2008 and Byrne on 16th June 2008. Their conduct has, to date, resulted in the Law Society’s Compensation Fund compensating clients who are victims of their dishonesty by the payment out of €2,457,706 (Michael Lynn) and €6,037,837 (Thomas Byrne), a total of an astonishing €8,495,543. These payments have essentially been funded by the overwhelming majority of solicitors who properly and lawfully go about their business and act in the interests of their clients’.

    Almost 8.5 billion euros is the cost to their fellow solicitors fund and add to this the costs to their clients. Where is the honour, the code of conduct, the idea of one’s word being a bond? This is reckless abandon within our professional bodies. The law is proving inadequate as a deterrent to people involved in the professions. This needs immediate action. This endorsement to moral bankruptcy must be halted.

    There is a lack of will on behalf of the people. The time is here to stop turning the other cheek. We need for people to be held accountable and expeditiously.  While we may welcome that Drumm and Fitzpatrick may have to present themselves before Chartered Accountants Regulatory Board (Carb), the sanctions are insignificant to the level of corporate crime that needs to be proved in our law courts. They face suspension or expulsion from Chartered Accountants Ireland as well as fines up to 30,000 euro (£25,453) if found guilty of misconduct. These professional bodies have a function but let not the ineptitude of the DPP and the fraud investigators allow the cart to go before the horse.

    Our Government have the capacity to handle the corporate crime that has become part of our political and economic culture. We know now from experience that ‘justice delayed is justice denied’. We have tribunals like the Mahon Tribunal running now for over a decade and yet no conclusions but at a massive financial cost to the State and gain to the legal profession. We have tackled corporate crime e.g. the Ansbacher accounts successfully in the past via our Revenue Commissioners. Add to this the Criminal Assets Bureau and we can conclude that we have the machinery to tackle corporate crime i.e. that of a different dimension but crime also. We now need to expedite.

    Quotation – Order
    ‘Watch out for the fellow who talks about putting things in order! Putting things in order always means getting other people under your control’
    Denis Diderot (1713-84) French Philosopher

About michelleclarke2015

Life event that changes all: Horse riding accident in Zimbabwe in 1993, a fractured skull et al including bipolar anxiety, chronic fatigue …. co-morbidities (Nietzche 'He who has the reason why can deal with any how' details my health history from 1993 to date). 17th 2017 August operation for breast cancer (no indications just an appointment came from BreastCheck through the Post). Trinity College Dublin Business Economics and Social Studies (but no degree) 1997-2003; UCD 1997/1998 night classes) essays, projects, writings. Trinity Horizon Programme 1997/98 (Centre for Women Studies Trinity College Dublin/St. Patrick's Foundation (Professor McKeon) EU Horizon funded: research study of 15 women (I was one of this group and it became the cornerstone of my journey to now 2017) over 9 mth period diagnosed with depression and their reintegration into society, with special emphasis on work, arts, further education; Notes from time at Trinity Horizon Project 1997/98; Articles written for Irishhealth.com 2003/2004; St Patricks Foundation monthly lecture notes for a specific period in time; Selection of Poetry including poems written by people I know; Quotations 1998-2017; other writings mainly with theme of social justice under the heading Citizen Journalism Ireland. Letters written to friends about life in Zimbabwe; Family history including Michael Comyn KC, my grandfather, my grandmother's family, the O'Donnellan ffrench Blake-Forsters; Moral wrong: An acrimonious divorce but the real injustice was the Catholic Church granting an annulment – you can read it and make your own judgment, I have mine. Topics I have written about include annual Brain Awareness week, Mashonaland Irish Associataion in Zimbabwe, Suicide (a life sentence to those left behind); Nostalgia: Tara Hill, Co. Meath.
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One Response to Citizen Journalism: Selection of emails to Government and related. Year 2010 August to December by Michelle Clarke

  1. Pingback: Citizen Journalism: Selection of emails to Government and related. Year 2010 August to December | canisgallicus

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