Piggy Back time for Ireland Inc: Try Billionaire’s Row, San Francisco
To:Alan Shatter , firstname.lastname@example.org, Averil Power , email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org , email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, Kieran Loughran , email@example.com, Bill Martin et al
Baggotonia, Dublin 4 (Upper and Lower Baggot St) http://www.theliffeypress.com/prodigals-and-geniuses-the-writers-and-artists-of-dublin-s-ba…:
‘The coffee shops in our little Village space are on their knees. Cutbacks of those little luxuries once served are now stripped to the bare bones yet the landlords/owners are demanding exorbitant rents. Rumour has it that the Bagel is gone and so is the person who operated the Baggot Street Upper premises. (Over the weekend re-opened, repainted and new management). Here every day for years, his staff loyal, his customers too but his franchise failed to negotiate on his behalf to get the rent down. It is said that the rent for the small space he had was 50,000 euros pa. It can’t work as a business plan. Who owns these properties? Why can’t the Department of Justice intervene and create equity in these harrowing times for small businesses. What if the Landlord is ultimately NAMA and they are imposing these unjust, inequitable rents on businesses?’ How do we generate small business entrepreneurship?:
Jonathan Swift in the 16th century spoke of ‘giving vision to the visionless’.
Baggotonia is stifled because the foreboding Royal City of Dublin Hospital, a place of eminent medical renown, stands bedraggled, unpainted, windows dirty, with the minimal services that primary health care manages to provide. A cost benefit analysis should be done immediately because this is a blatant waste of public resources and potential to drive this economy forward in the area of Baggotonia. Why? This area may no longer be known as home to as many billionaires as during the Celtic Tiger days but a lot of the old wealth survives and the houses for sale are still in the millions and are selling.
Vision:- We need some. Eaton Manufacturing have bought into the IBM offices on Pembroke Road, Dublin 4, so we await them eagerly to once again have people spending on the ‘street’, in the restaurants, the coffee houses, the pubs, the shops. Yesterday, another new business enters where Xtra-vision (it is said their rent was 140,000 euros per year) was forced to exit. Nobody could possibly have guessed the service to be marketed: the banks at one time used to provide the services holding property deeds, jewellery, files but now Sentinel Vaults have spotted the opportunity and are tapping the market in the key area of Dublin 4. Now people store digital data in these boxes. Welcome to St Martin’s House – which is reported to have been bought by German company.
Royal City of Dublin hospital. The news is that one of the eight primary care centres is to be placed at the Haddington Road side of the hospital. What are the plans for the hospital? A medical museum was suggested; but nobody has the necessary commitment to make things happen and without impetus Baggotonia is submerged by economic doom and gloom. Now they say there are 440,000+ unemployed so there is a reduction. Can we sustain this? We need to bolster locations with potential resources and create markets. We have Google in Dublin 2 with its head office for Europe in Ireland. We have the financial services in the IFSC http://www.ifsc.ie/; we have the universities – why can we not create something like what happened on Billionaires Row in San Francisco in Baggotonia.
Bloomberg Businessweek Technology sector – we in Ireland can learn so much by “piggy-backing”/”leap-frogging” on the capacity and experience of others. The private equity firms like Blackstone, Kennedy Wilson are already honed in but we need to regain our self-belief and dignity and we need to enter back into the markets. There are people who hold considerable wealth in Ireland and we need to inspire them with ideas that they forget hoarding their money in Switzerland and such tax havens or in cash in our near State owned banks for near no return and engage them with the potential of our young people and risk-takers.
Let’s engage with the narrative around the start-ups on San Francisco’s Billionaire’s Row. Three years ago, something extraordinary happened on Billionaires Row. Somebody decided to put a Mansion up for rent. The property was worth $8 million and the potential client was probably a financier or executive. Change happened. The house was leased to 8 entrepreneurs aged in their 30’s. The mansion ‘was morphed into a hive of start-up activity’. Imagine the potential for the Royal City of Dublin hospital https://canisgallicus.wordpress.com/author/michelleclarke2015/, especially if there was an impetus for corporate social responsibility linked to people mental health and neurological conditions who if provided with the necessary resources could be rehabilitated back into the community.
These “incubator houses” have become a Silicon Valley trend. Take the example of the Rainbow Mansion in Cupertino, ‘which has its own website and 5,000 square feet of space to house employees from Apple and Google, as well as start-up junkies’. The outcome from this is that graduates from Harvard and Massachusetts Institute of Technology ‘have set up rival start-up communes’ in San Francisco. Do we have anything similar to the “Dead Houses” network ie owned by the Dead, in Ireland? If interested, check out: Meetup.com “It would be a plus to find someone into the start-up scene and who likes to hack on side projects”. Job creation should be a thriving industry yet “FAS in transition to Solus” is no longer in Baggotonia and failed dismally to engage in vision and creation of space utilisation so it is mind boggling to imagine that in D’Olier Street they will become a haven of job creation and inspiration. Check out the postings on JobBridge FAS and the grassroots experiences of the people who will grow this economy.
The power of the people must be recognised. Look at Georgian Dublin and the empty offices. Properties are being sold now (4 storey over basement) for a little as £500,000. IBEC have their offices, the Trade Unions like Siptu have Liberty Hall, Google property is owned by NAMA (Ronan & Barrett). What we now need urgently is for people who are potential entrepreneurs to have access to locations that will support their start-ups. We have these locations, we just need to tap the talent of those multi-nationals who avail of our favourable tax rates. All these locations have Tescos stores. The North of Ireland have shamed Tesco into an element of corporate social responsibility known as the TESCO TAX. We need this paid in our local communities too. They are struggling and the adornment of flower baskets just hides the pain.
These Georgian houses create such a potential in Ireland. The renovation in line with the environment, the generation of employment in the construction industry and then the potential to be an entrepreneurial centre for start-ups ….. Take the example of Buckley aged 31 who co-founded DODOcase http://www.dodocase.com/ in 2010. ‘He used one part of the house to assemble the case, which looks like a bound book, and another for shipping. The company sold about $4 million worth in its first year, President Obama owns one – and now employs more than 20 people at a factory in San Francisco’
The idea is worth consideration. These mansions ensure the location and the entrepreneurs pay less per month to live in the Mansion than in a one bed apartment. They are in Billionaires Row in San Francisco immersed in the resources of wealth without the costs.
Apparently vacancies are unheard of! There are plenty of ‘entrepreneurs, robotics enthusiasts, and venture capitalists, who want to move in. Baggotonia has access to the resources, let the people share the vision and utilise the vacant spaces with vigour and drive.
By Michelle Clarke
|Date:||Friday 2nd August 2013 11:08:27 +0100|
|To:||Reply to contributor to Citizen Journalism site; undisclosed address list|
|Subject:||Bullied by trade union member to accept……|
|Date:||Friday 9th Aug 2013 18:19:20 +0100|
|To:||Contact , United Left Alliance , firstname.lastname@example.org, James Reilly , email@example.com , Mike Allen , firstname.lastname@example.org, CentralBankPressOffice , Vincent Browne et al|
|Subject:||Mr Tax Exiles have some honour; pay your taxes in Ireland, create employment in Ireland. Response to article on citizen journalism site: source on request. Mr Gay Byrne some say yes & some say No but at least Gay Byrne like O’Leary Ryanair pay their taxes in Ireland|
|Date:||Thursday 15th August 2013 17:13:10 +0100|
|To:||Alan Shatter , ASenkara@amnesty.ie ; undisclosed address list|
Ireland’s infrastructure, the education of our people, the youth who buy their ‘products’; the tax haven that gave writers tax incentives, we are numbed and on our knees to debt and we really need you to return to Ireland, to pay your taxes and contribute to our economy. http://www.nationaldebtclocks.org/debtclock/ireland
500 million euros, reported by the OECD, is the amount of money that Nigerians remitted to Nigeria in 2012. To anyone who has lived in Africa, it will be all too clear that poverty exists but what one also knows is that despotism, nepotism, totalitarianism prevail and cause the social inequalities. Bono, Bob Geldof, Denis O’Brien are the heroes of ‘let’s feed the poor’ but now its the time to stand down blatant corruption through exemplary behaviour and that mean’s come home, pay your taxes in Ireland and be messengers that State Inequality is the source of poverty which ultimately creates tribal civil wars. Transparency International, the United Nations, Unesco these are the vehicles who aim to make changes but certain demi-Gods now have their faces intrinsically linked to the word saviour and giver but the truth is they are tax cute manipulators of tax havens with an air of supremacy that isn’t underwritten by their own donations and lifestyle choices. These are the elites who pop in and out to Ireland to meet other political elites like Mrs President Obama and her daughters in quaint Dalkey.
Well done to the poster of this article (reply to Citizen Journalism contributor). These Mr “Bilderbergers” who nuzzle in when the gong rings in Wall Street on St. Patrick’s day need to be asked to re-think their positions. If their criteria are purely monetary, we need to say to them to read about Mr Warren Buffet and his honour and principles about drawing down a reduced salary and being prepared to pay more taxes on his wealth sourced income. Honour is the old fashioned word but now is the time to put it to our Mr Tax Exiles to display same.
There are people who could but have not abused our tax laws. Today, it is humbling to read that Mr Gay Byrne who is now in his 80’s and who worked in RTE broadcasting for most of his working life and how this loyal individual addressed the harsh realities that the CelticTiger financial markets collapse dictated for him and many more who lost their entire pensions in the crisis of 2007. Too many people with private pension funds were advised to invest in the Banks including Anglo Irish and they lost all. Well done to Mr Byrne. He wallowed not in the misery of the financial losses he had to face, he ‘took up his shovel and he went to work’ and nobody should begrudge him and the £444,000 gain he made over the last number of years. We need people like him who not alone create work and financial gain for themselves but for others too at ever level of the value chain.
Next time I see someone who is a Mr Tax Exile in Dublin 4 or Dalkey I am going to address them as Hello Mr Tax Exile; would you ever consider being a Robin Hood? Shame is the only way to get people to think and act with honour.
By Michelle Clarke (Comyn)
Test case to take-over underwater mortgages. Check out: “Eminent Domain”
|Date:||Friday 16th August 2013 18:58:41 +0100|
|To:||Vincent Browne , email@example.com; undisclosed address list|
|Subject:||Moral bankrupts: Consider the practices of John Lewis Partnership http://www.johnlewispartnership.co.uk/|
|Date:||Friday 23rd August 2013 19:11:59 +0100|
|To:||Vincent Browne , firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com , James Reilly : Citizen Journalism site and address list|
|Subject:||Response to contributor Citizen Journalism site: Thinking of you. Keep spirits up. Negative equity cost me the most valuable thing of all and that is your health. We need to shake heads together and give people options. ISI is the way for slow coach and five years into recession it is not the answer. You know what I am saying. Beat the banks.
|Date:||Saturday 21st September 2013 19:20:14 +0100|
|To:||Citizen Journalism site; undisclosed address list|
|Subject:||St Arthur’s Day: Addiction most likely relates to a specific area of the brain|
|Date:||Saturday 28th September 2013 18:25:11 +0100|
|To:||Vincent Browne ; Citizen Journalism site; undisclosed address lsit|
The idea of Arthur’s day as an occasion to lay all blame at the mantle of Diageo International for the many people who are endangered because there is an area in their brain that does not apply to other people that makes them susceptible to addiction, is surely a little excessive especially this year of ‘the Gathering 2013’ which is so much about history, nostalgia, diaspora returning ‘home’.The role about alcohol addiction and abuse surely rests with education, The information from Harvard, John Hopkins, to Trinity College, Research, in Dublin, is available to all who seek it out. If you have no internet, just go to the library or for that matter if you are over the age of 55, ask Google to give you what they make available for free and that is one hour’s tuition each week and then you can learn about addiction. Ireland now ranks top with health problems related to the over-consumption of alcohol particularly affecting the liver and it appears to be the statistics cited blatantly in 2012 still resound now, if not worse. It is beyond comprehension that the wallowing monolith of the HSE has failed to act by facilitating people who are both negligent and reckless enough to become so inebriated that they end up on the alcohol/illegal drug revolving door of A&E. A&E and private insurance companies should be tackled with the costs incurred due to abhorrent inebriation. If this is done then people could be asked for payment. Shame might work better than bleating about Arthur’s Day as an event aimed at invoking a sense of community again with the local pub. We are talking about healthcare fraud by basic amorality by people often teenagers and it’s time to use these strong words.It is fascinating to hear about alcohol addiction without the latest addiction and its many tentacles that excludes one to one communication between people i.e the use of the computer and the inability to converse without technology, smart phones, etc. Already society has begun the pull-back. Christy Moore makes valid points in his Arthur’s Day song about Diageo but can we really blame them, and their advertising as being targeted at hunting down those potentially homeless, drifters, addiction prone people, so that it can subject them to a mercenary ethos of let’s catch them, ultimately destroy them, while leaving them subjected to the failing health system in Ireland. I don’t really think the blame lies with the people who sell the drink; it rests more with the education system, the health system, government policy that fails to help people recognise the ways of self assessment that says like a person with mental health problems or heart disease – check out your vulnerabilities based on family genetics and if there are likely to be precipitating events that will cause onset, then the choice rests with you, the person, educated by the State, to make the choice. There will always be casualties but now we have access to education, to information, to scientific findings; it is necessary for people to take responsibility in regard to the choices they make and this applies especially to our young generation. Digital will soon create data stream of personalised information; meantime I have completed my own; because of medications I cannot take alcohol. My responsibility ? https://canisgallicus.wordpress.com/…/take-responsibility-maintain-your-own-health-r…The Taoiseach refers to the 2,000 beds being wasted nightly in Ireland’s hospitals especially now at a time when our health service is on its knees. This surely tells us to revert the matter to the government who have been aware of the impact of alcohol and re-iterate to them that they have basically facilitated the HSE in its denial to re-act and act pro-actively to the crisis in hand. This is not the result of Diageo and its Arthur’s Day anniversary; this is hard core reality of neglect, negligence and failure to act by penalising the people who block up our A&E departments and those who consistently persist in drinking until their overall health becomes such an excessive cost to the State that it is a burden on all citizens. Did FG not suggest a Drink Tank?Professor Frank Murray http://vimeo.com › Alcohol Action Ireland › Videos highlights that Ireland is reaching crisis health deprivation conditions because people are drinking too much alcohol. He does not blame the pubs. He clearly states that it is the cheap drink, the drink that Tesco and others supply, that is causing a lot of the difficulties and the fact that people drink in the home – often drip-feed throughout the day.Take a look at today’s English Independent and realise how dissociated Tesco and ASDA are from the real lives of people and ask the question do they care about selling drink at such knock-down prices that it inveigles the young, the addicted, those on the revolving door of our inadequate mental health system, people who end up being violent and often wounding and killing others. The answer is No and we favouring them with tax breaks, are facilitating them to cause harm to more vulnerable members in our society. Some of these Corporates are now so profit orientated that they are totally dis-connected from people: How could it happen that a corporate company could target those with mental illness and create a costume for Halloween making fun of those who are most vulnerable in society. Today we are told that Tesco is the second retailer to apologise for selling costumes for adults called “Psycho Ward” with the word “Committed” printed on the back. “Mental patient fancy dress” was how ASDA went about their online marketing. Is this what virtual is re-creating in a digital form?Corporate Social Responsibility is the only way forward. Arthur Guinness in his day came to realize what alcohol could do to families where addiction prevailed but Arthur Guinness then developed a corporate social conscience and he sought to tackle poverty. The Guinness Trust established the first creche in the Liberties around the time of the 1913 Lock-Out, it provided housing for workers, workers had an allocation of stout for health reasons.Education must highlight what addiction is and be used to warn children of the harm unrelenting consumption can do. The shift in culture away from the pub may after all have created a different cohort of societal problems for people for example the lack of communication at the basic human level that involves empathy and concern for society. By Michelle Clarke
|Subject:||Mistakes are Portals of Discovery said Joyce but Banks are still sinking fast|
|Date:||Sunday 29th September 2013 18:30:23 +0100|
|To:||Vincent Browne , Cahill Gavin ; Citizen Journalism site; undisclosed address list|
5 years on and our Banks, mostly stated owned, are befuddled, muddled and a source of havoc for people who are in negative equity and worse again massively in debt.
As the years, months, weeks go by, the territory is becoming harrowing for those who have serious debts. It is looking increasingly so that people to name a few: McFeely, McNamara and Yates, have taken the correct route. They had the vision and they now have the benefit of knowing they can start again, free of all their debts. But what about the minions. Consider your mortgage. How much interest has accrued over the last five years based on the loan that is most likely in negative equity discount? Add another 5 years and you most probably will find out that 10 years+ into a mortgage sees the bank repaid the capital cost. Okay we all know that mortgages are subject to lower rates of interest than personal loans and it is linked to security but the problem for people in property in Ireland is that value of the property plunged and people basically found themselves with interest being paid on say e200,000 but if they were to sell their house now they would only receive e100,000 plus all the costs. More than likely they will have forfeited expenses, interest to date, costs, and the equity they invested in the first instance.
People who are facing eviction need to start looking at options urgently. The banks have dragged their heals and ultimately it is the people who will pay the costs.
Again as posted previously check out all sources of advice and information. Sunday’s newspapers provide a source of opinion and this man is worth connecting with:-
James Fitzsimons ‘The main solution being offered to distressed borrowers involves repossession’. This is an independent financial adviser specialising in tax and financial planning
We know the order of business: The Troika tells the Central Bank who tells the Banks but the message got lost in translation over the last five years. The sad fact is that it appears that ‘Repossession’ is their best solution to the crisis. The Central Bank wants a what’s known as a Standard Financial Statement detailing the lenders best solution for customers. According to the figures up to the end of June, more than 60% of solutions involved giving up the property. More significantly is the fact that 57% of these relate to private dwelling homes and 74% buy-to-lets.
“If the banks want the nuclear option, let them take the fallout. That means sharing the negative equity and loss in the value that owners have sustained. If that’s unfair on customers who kept their payments up to date, go back to the drawing board and find sustainable solutions for those who can’t. Had they not been so slow to arrest growth in arrears, the majority would be back on track by now. Not only have lenders not made every effort to find the alternatives, in most cases they made none at all”.
To remind people negative equity has occurred in the past, here in Ireland and over in the UK and elsewhere. They say markets have no memories but if one considers the lethargy of Central bank and the ordinary banks to make equitable decisions about the present mortgage book, this is a major denial of the truth. The fact is negative equity in the UK in the 1990’s impacted harshly on many emigrant Irish who moved away from recessionary Ireland of the 1980’s, The Banks can bully but the people have options and if some of those who rack rented our markets through development can escape the rigours of what is proposed now by the Troika Central Bank Banks Trinity, now is the time to engage.
To those in debt, read James Fitzsimons article and think about what is the best way to deal with your negative equity debt; ask is the timing right? We are five years into the recession; how many years will it take for the market supply or non supply of housing to increase the value of properties. Private equity are hovering – listen out for Blackstone, Kennedy Wilson and others. 10,000 to 14,000 properties were ring-fenced by NAMA and rented out in social housing and private rental. 2020 is D-Day for NAMA when all properties should be sold. These properties are to be released for sale in the coming months so watch this space and watch markets change to landlord led private equity ownership.
|Subject:||Trade Unions: Stash of Cash should be used to create jobs|
|Date:||Monday 30th September 2013 19:45:04 +0100|
|To:||firstname.lastname@example.org, Clare Daly , email@example.com; Citizen Journalism; undisclosed address list|
|Subject:||Is Bankruptcy the best option? Negative Equity & unemployed|
|Date:||Tuesday 1st October 2013 23:28:10 +0100|
|To:||William Binchy , firstname.lastname@example.org, Valerie Walsh , email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, Stephen Booth , email@example.com, Stephen.Donnelly@oireachtas.ie, Sorcha Donohoe , Sophie Lumsden , SharonSwaine@courts.ie , firstname.lastname@example.org, Samantha Brennan , Shane Clarke , email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, Paul Cassidy , email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, Pádraig MacLochlainn , O’Shea’s Hotel , email@example.com|
|Subject:||William Butler Yeats ‘Once you attempt legislation on religious grounds you open the way for every kind of intolerance & for every kind of religious persecution”|
|Date:||Wednesday 2nd Oct 2013 16:56:50 +0100|
|To:||Citizen Journalism site; undisclosed address list|
|Subject:||Shock in D4. Houses should have utility. Georgian houses left to decay is morally wrong|
|Date:||Thursday 3rd Oct 2013 19:25:41 +0100|
|To:||Vincent Browne , Alan Shatter , firstname.lastname@example.org ; Citizen Journalism site; undisclosed address list|
Do we understand or do we care or worse is it capitalism and commerce that want the details hidden?
In Manchester recently, Granada TV had to pay £1 million to deal with asbestos contained in the building which like all buildings constructed in that period (1960’s) had asbestos. The only way to do this is to identify it; and then isolate it because to disturb it results in the fine dust polluting the air which in turn can settle in the lungs of the people exposed to it. For some it can be latent so fear is the reminder but for others it manifests as cancer and they die, but not before they have suffered and their families and friends have experienced what asbestosis can do to a human being. Why is it that the medical profession remain so quiet about what asbestosis can do to people?
The question about the play is do we really care anymore about those who were exposed to asbestos and died painful deaths. Think of Christy Hennessy who worked in the building game in the UK and he got it.
|Subject:||‘Scales of Justice’ & Dublin Castle. Global Irish Economic Forum elites. Hope they recognised Justice|
|Date:||Monday 7th Oct 2013 17:10:58 +0100|
|To:||Alan Shatter , Ethics ; Citizen Journalism; undisclosed address list|
|Subject:||Do you know the story of the Judas Goat! Time to find out perhaps,|
|Date:||Wednesday, 16th October 2013 22:15:05 +0100|
|From:||Michelle Clarke (Blake))|
|To:||Citizen Journalism site; undisclosed address list|
Wednesday, 16th October, 2013 14:57
Christy Moore is the man we need to read this poem. To most of us asbestos is just another word without much meaning. Every so often, we may hear that a person like Christy Hennessy (song writer, singer) dies from the disease but the truth is it falls under the category cancer and the reality is we don’t often seek the cause of the specific cancer.
W/slave: you prompted me to check it out.
Ireland trails behind the US and the UK. We need to ask Why? Our no foal no fee lawyers apparently are not eager enough to fight these cases but in the absence of knowledge and the continuity of businesses through the decades, the people afflicted with this awful disease fall literally between the cracks. They get sick in their later years, they get diagnosed, they don’t have the energy to fight for justice and then they die. It is a ruthless take but the questions need to be raised and why not start with the medical profession who have the evidence. We can then piggy-back on the expertise of the worldwide law firms who seek justice. We need to know about Asbestos because it applies to buildings (which if we take the new tax breaks from yesterdays 2014 Budget for properties built prior to 1915) it most definitely merits consideration.
For some facts: http://www.mesothelioma-facts.com?asbestos-exposure.cfm
Kazan Law Asbestos Attorneys are there to advise.
Asbestos is a group of minerals which occur naturally that can be separated into thin fibres. It was a popular building material and used in many different industries because the fibres are resistant to ‘heat, fire and chemicals and do not conduct electricity’ as detailed by the National Cancer Institute.
“Miracle mineral” is how the Greeks and Romans referred to asbestos and its ability to resist fire. Since the 1800’s in the US, asbestos has been mined and used. It was widely used during the Industrial Revolution. Stanford University’s Department of Environmental Health and Safety have outlined ‘that some of the major industries that typically used asbestos included construction, roofing, shipbuilding and the automotive industry’. What’s left…. there is the ‘need to know’ detail of how to deal with asbestos presently associated with these industries so that they can be identified and not disturbed.
Why? It is direct contact between the person and exposure to the asbestos by inhaling the dangerous fibers when they breathe. Think of situations like the inhalation that can occur during building demolitions, asbestos mining or renovation work. These fibers can be swallowed hence exposure from drinking or consuming contaminated liquids or foods. Ireland is a young country but we need to be aware that people have taken class legal actions in other countries, including Northern Ireland and have been awarded compensation.
In 2005 – World Health Organisation estimated that 125 million people worldwide were exposed to asbestos in the workplace. This was despite the known danger for several decades at that time.
Further the WHO estimates ‘that diseases stemming from asbestos exposure kill approximately 107,000 people worldwide each year’. We need to consider the imports we receive especially from China and what the components are. It is time now to enforce a system globally of a sense of corporate social responsibility
What can we do immediately:
We need to ensure that workers us ‘protective equipment and follow proper safety procedures whenever handling asbestos’.
For those who have been diagnosed with asbestosis, they need due recompense – The Judas Goat http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=Judas%20Goat
|Subject:||What is the position of the Court? As Patrick Honohan states, is the court to be the “regulator of last resort”|
|Date:||Tuesday 22nd October 2013 17:38:42 +0100|
|To:||Citizen Journalism site; undisclosed address list|
What is the position of the Court?
As Patrick Honohan, Central Bank Governor, states, is the court to be the “regulator of last resort?”
Approaching year six after the Celtic Tiger collapse, the real hardship is beginning to bite deep as the banks are pressured to meet targets. Strategic Defaulters, Mortgage Delinquents, the Tourist Bankrupts form one category on the spectrum of debt to the banks but we must not lose sight of the human factor. We hear about “Moral Hazard” but let this apply to the former but not to the genuine casualties of the housing fiasco.
Conor Feehan writes in today’s Independent about a woman’s body being found in a flat due to be repossessed. Longboat Quay off Sir John Rogerson’s Quay reveals yet another tragedy and loss of life that is part of the quagmire of distress imposed on people who had but one objective, and that was to own their own home, by way of a mortgage, funded by the Banks. These are the people who do not deserve the sentence imposed upon them of a negative equity apartment/house/home that is now worth half it’s value but is mortgaged for double.
The wound of negative equity is festering with no semblance of honest concern. Anomie is about suicide and there is a slow creeping anomie taking hold of our society. We need to embrace the wound and tackle the problem with practicalities. The truth is that sometimes it is not possible to repay the debt. The only way is to write-down a proportion of same. The banks must be forced to do so; but firstly it must be emphasized to the Troika that the ECB must act by making concessions of write-downs in bank debt to their ‘star pupil’ whose deficit positions them third place in Europe.
Wounded and in pain but it is time to say enough. Spare a thought for this woman who had a dream.
‘The sheriff’s team, backed up by gardai, arrived at the Longboat Quay apartment off Sir John Rogerson’s Quay in Dublin at noon yesterday. They made the grim discovery inside the apartment they had been sent to reclaim. It is understood the owner of the apartment had made an agreement with the sheriff’s office to vacate the fourth floor property, and that there had been communications between both parties last Friday.
What the Sheriff found was a body, a human being who said goodbye. When does the pain stop? One must ask the question if the life insurance pays back the bank and at which value? We are all focused on cost but human value has become an irrelevance. There must be an equitable and fairer way for the banks to negotiate with people to remain in their homes. They can restructure debt over time. They can take a write-down. Short sightedness is not acceptable.
by Michelle Clarke (O’Malley)
|Subject:||‘Wealthy gone on Investment Strike’ by Michelle Clarke (Devil’s Advocate) – Justice Citizen Journalism comment ref book launch details “Failure of Irish Capitalism’. Source on request|
|Date:||Sunday 27th, October 2013 18:10:11 +0000|
|To:||Vincent Browne , email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org; Citizen Journalism site; undisclosed address list|
Sunday 27th, October 2013
“Kieran Allen, a sociologist who works in UCD, said, ‘Figures show that the “wealthy have effectively gone on an investment strike”. A mere €16 billion is being invested in Ireland compared to €46 billion in 2007. This is unsustainable and means that unemployment and emigration will continue for some time”.
£46 billion invested in Ireland in 2007 but a meager £16 billion now. I am not surprised. Holding money in Ireland is a hazard to health and anxiety levels, with the paper trail that is haunting our pensioners, our baby boomers now retired and people with disabilities who have received financial settlements from the courts or other sources. Why? Try opening a bank account in one of our State owned banks or for that matter in Bank of Ireland which still has the dregs of once worthwhile shares. Evidence is the order of the day now. They need a utility bill address, they need passport copies but witnessed by solicitors (beware the many defunct solicitors now advisers to Debt Options and others), or for that matter bankers with their stamp). Try adding a name to your account at the Post Office and again it is a data mining exercise with the bureaucracy to go with it.
Then for those who may have held shares in publicly quoted companies ie Stock Exchange, through their lives, the surprise post these days is a letter from the stockbrokers with the intimidating inference that their funds invested in stocks and shares have links with money laundering and they must by a certain date provide evidence of who they are basically and in line with what the banks are requesting to open new accounts. For those people who want to hold a sterling account in Ireland yielding no interest, just a preference in currency – this is the real hurdle. The advice received from an AIB staff member was to get on a bus and go North and choose an English bank. Try to proceed with the argument that you don’t want to desert that sinking ship called Ireland Inc and you will find that it may take up to 2 months and lots of bureaucratic nonsense to open a Sterling account, which in the days of Central Bank control, was a whole lot easier.
Are we getting the message why people are no longer choosing to hold funds in Ireland? We are creating a bureaucracy equivalent to what you find if you are working as an ex-pat in Zimbabwe receiving local currency and bound by their Reserve Bank rules. A pure hell hole for those who have the money to invest. What can we learn from this: we learn that people will seek out simplicity – hence the black economy appears to be thriving in Ireland as it still governs Zimbabwe.
Kieran I hope in your book you have looked at the Ireland Inc that has welcomed so many migrants to its shores. Ireland Inc was many times before a nation of emigrants but the difference this time is that our people are unlikely to be remitting money home (because why would they send back money when they left properties in negative equity). The real he scary part is that there are others (un-checked by Government or Central Banks) busy remitting vast sums of money ‘home’. Check out the OECD figures which revealed that Nigerian migrants to Ireland remitted 500€ million (this is half a billion) back to Nigeria in 2012. Where is the common sense? Western Union and others facilitating the flow outwards, it must be considerable if the OECD report that 500 € million was sent to Nigeria alone in 2012.
Austerity is killing Ireland Inc.
Ireland is a small open economy that must sell her wares and the truth is the message has not got through yet. We are not watching the pennies…….Remittances are leakages from our boat and we are sinking fast.
by Michelle Clarke Devil’s Advocate
|Subject:||‘Can’t get me I’m part of the Union?’ No more, be warned!,|
|Date:||Wednesday 30th October, 2013 19:00:22 +0000|
|To:||Brendan.Howlin@oireachtas.ie; undisclosed address list; Citizen Journalism site.|
Wednesday 30th October, 2013
The Sunday Observer. The cartoon by David Simonds, is a must but I don’t know if it can be uploaded. Industrial Britain and the smoking chimneys in the background, the trodden down union leaders with their banner being flittered to pieces by a big huge gigantic alley cat gone corporate in his pin stripe suit, the tie and that smile that says – my claws are telling you your days are numbered as he flitters what was once the Trade Union banner with the message defending the workers. Ireland differs from the UK because Fianna Fail cleverly promoted a relationship of join our club, enjoy our salaries, our perks, our trips abroad, our pensions and what they created was a coterie of trade union officials in their ‘Celtic Tiger’ image. Just look at the corruption, the cronyism, the McNeice farce, the Merrigan credit card slip up, the SIPTU/HSE £4m question mark, who knows the misadventure that is hidden in the quangos, the semi-state. We all know the story about FAS thanks to the grassroots investigation carried out by Shane Ross and others. The reality is there is a tier of people in the trade unions with a bias towards public sector because the more they secure for these workers, the greater the deal they secure for themselves which is so closely aligned to what our politicians receive, yes even to include double dipping of pensions. These trade unions are sitting on vast amounts of union dues paid in by workers a lot of whom are now unemployed or have emigrated or for that matter are retired (figures in excess of 600,000). Do the trade unions have any sense of obligation to these former workers.?.Do they care? No it seems not. Ask a worker from Clery’s or from the Doyle Group of Hotels about the treatment they received and you will be shocked to learn how quickly Siptu wash their hands of a service sector worker with not much potential for work in the future, they become worthless because they are no longer paying their dues. We know their mission statement is only for those in work albeit a reducing number, but surely the history of the trade union suggests their obligations go beyond. The retail sector is now governed by the like of Starburcks and their franchises, Tesco; the great multi-nationals who get tax advantages and pay minimum tax and who are slowly but surely pushing out people who may have had contracts and union affiliation in favour of zero contract hours which basically is about obliterating all the rights the trade unions have fought for workers at a whim. What can we learn from our nearest neighbour, which has now experienced over two decades of union decline in Britain’s private sector? In 1995 nearly one third of all UK employees were union members. Now it is only 25%. It is the private sector that has suffered the highest decline, similar to Ireland. Take 1979 and the figures are a stark reality: union ranks have been halved – 13 million trade unionists to now only 6.5 million. The message is that trade unions need to be focusing on getting more people to join from the private sector but as ‘Austerity’ mantra of the Troika influences and government policies bite deep, this is a challenge that requires impetus, motivation and drive to secure a more equitable working environment for potential members of the union. To read the writing on the wall, just take the example in Scotland – Firth of Forth: the 2013 Grangemouth dispute. Why? Unite represented 8 out of 10 workers is forced to capitulate to Ineos (co-owner of Scotland’s largest oil refinery) and witness first hand how effective the imposition of union decline is on Britain’s private sector. ‘If a mighty union that represents eight out of ten employees on a classic industrial site cannot defend its members’ interests, workplaces without union representation staff will openly doubt what affiliation will ever do for them.
For what it is worth, the benefits are manifold, from protection against employers who – like Ineos – want to scrap pension arrangements, to support in areas including legal advice and retraining’
Collective bargaining has become biased in Ireland and forgetful of those dispossessed from employment. Pensions are often forfeited. Rights become irrelevant especially where zero contracts become the order of the day. The whole issue of retraining is but a smokescreen as can be witnessed by the 300,000 on the dole queues and as for those who have emigrated, their ongoing rights are just obliterated.
Trade unions, their integrity, their motivation for the protection of workers, the provision of training for the unemployed, their history especially this centenary of the Lock-Out, must be open to investigation and all forms of cronyism, bias, corruption, must be weeded out. The trade unions have to represent workers in employment yes but let them not forget those who worked in industries such as the retail sector, the construction sector, and who paid their dues and who no doubt forfeited their pensions by using their treasury funds which yield basically no interest return by creating an infra-structure for employment. Take Liberty Hall within a mile of Google, surely they could use the space and have a hub of learning activity for so many of those people unemployed and willing to learn. Instead you have a grotty building minus the sense of enterprise.
Jonathan Swift’s words are: ‘Give vision to the visionless’. Well the time is now for the trade unions to step up to the plate and create opportunities for those out of work as well as secure bench marking deals with those in the public sector who at least have jobs, pensions, holidays, perks etc etc.
|Subject:||Autumn day, wind blows, rain and damp invade the bodies of people who sit and are forced to beg; Homelessness|
|Date:||Saturday 2nd November 2013 17:49:44 +0000|
|To:||Citizen Journalism site; undisclosed address list|
Saturday 2nd November 2013 16:34
The man outside Tesco has taken the spot from another man who has a problem with his leg, their story is ‘stereo-typically’ the same and that is they are begging for money for their hostel preferably so that they can book a week in advance. To be sitting on a pavement as the weather changes for the realities of a hard winter makes their situation all the more unacceptable because you know their plight is that they fall between the cracks of the social model and because they have no utility bill, no fixed address, they have no social welfare. For some reason these people are displaced from their original homes, it might be divorce, drug addiction, alcoholism, disability, ill-health and in particular people with mental health problems but what it does tell you is that there are people in our society who need special involvement from Services and who do not receive them.
I walk up to next shop and B reminds me that I went in one door of Tesco the last day and came out the other and forgot about him. What probably happened is that I was on the mobile phone and just forgot about B. Earlier in the day another character came up to me and as usual asked for his Euro; when B noticed he admonished me and said why did I give to him because he had State benefits, a home and spent his day gambling in the bookies. This is the life of the Street. It’s harsh, it’s uncertain, it’s cold. It is about asking for money because you have nowhere to sleep for the night and ad infinitum. The poem (on Citizen Journalism site by contributor n/a) reflects the narrative so well and the truth is this hardship causes too many to die, too young, without an opportunity to know the difference. Ozzie was our local. When he died, we all realized that each member of her urban village community had a little of his character to remember him by. He looked so much older than his years. He had attributes but society sidelined him to homelessness, begging and who knows what else.
Stereotypes, monologues of the elites who have no empathy, the homeless industry and charities, (those without the objective to eradicate homelessness because it becomes their bread and butter), those chief executives and their flock who earn well in excess of £150,000, the beneficial owners of the hostels who receive payment for the beds in the dormitories from the overly bureaucratic sectors of government and in particular the HSE. Pruning is essential and a fresh look is urgently needed to tackle the homelessness crisis and underclass emergence in the streets of our city Dublin and other cities on this Island.
The internet is like access to literacy which empowers the people. With ease, the majority of us can access what happens in other countries with the homeless crisis. We are told that the EU has the Invisible Hand and social is a strong contributor. We know social plays a considerably less significant part of the American belief system. Let’s use the internet to take a look at San Francisco – Think Progress publication.
There is new survey about homelessness in the US (begging there refers to panhandlers) – downtown San Franciso. What is interesting is that it challenges the myths and the interesting part is that the myths there, resemble the same myths that apply here on the Island of Ireland. You might ask how or why? Well there seems to be a conventional wisdom ‘that those on the sidewalk asking for a dollar are lazy freeloaders who will use the money for alcohol or drugs’. The danger is when the media are biased towards this view and use the airwaves to promote the myths. In the US, Fox media and a Mr John Stossel have become the mouthpiece for the perpetrators of the myths and he has broadcast certain messages which are heavily biased and harmful to “beggars”. Stossel reports (we know only too well that so many of us use these very same stereotypes) messages such as “I had heard some people beg for a living and make big bucks – $80,000 a year in some cases….You shouldn’t really give to these street people…..You are really supporting alcoholism and drug problems”.
Thankfully this spurred on The Unions Square Business Improvement District (a collection of 500 property owners downtown San Francisco), to fund a research team. They took a two day period, in March. They spoke to 400 people who gave money to panhandlers/beggars over the past year. Thankfully, they can refute the Mythology. They found which I doubt is anyway different to what one would find in Dublin that ‘the typical ‘panhandler’ or ‘beggar’ is a ‘disabled middle-aged single male who is a racial minority (maybe not yet in Ireland) and makes less than $25 per day despite panhandling seven days a week for more than five years…..in fact 94% of these meager earnings are spent on food….furthermore they found that contrary to the myth people hold that ‘they prefer to live on the streets’ is wrong and that only 3% of panhandlers don’t want housing’.
Words like underclass, victims, mentally ill without out access to proper medical services, lack of education, sparse provision of social workers, drug addicts maintained on methadone for decades without a source of education to help them become working contributors to society by access to education must define Ireland as different, because we are small enough to make changes. Ignorance is no defence. We need to avoid victimology and create opportunities by seeking out alternatives other than a life on the streets begging.
Fr McVerry’s name is the man that is accredited for helping the homeless.
His website provides the facts:
…………….“This page provides statistical information on homelessness and Peter McVerry Trust Services.
7 – Average number of new presentations of homelessness in Dublin per day. (2012)
30% – Women now account for just over 30% of Ireland’s homeless population.
94 – Minimum number of rough sleepers in Dublin, based on rough sleeper count for April 2013.
307 – Girls aged 19 or under recorded as homeless in the 2011 census.
3,808 – The number of homeless in Ireland recorded in census 2011.
Stark figures for such a small population.
The US survey states that 60% make $25 a day or less, if this is so in Ireland and the hostels cost in excess of e60 per week plus the addition of the what HSE, the DCC, the NGO’s , Charities pay to the private owners of the hostels; it makes it quite a pitiful existence with no hope of ever leaving this culture of dependency propagated by commerce.
Why do people give to beggars! The finding is simple. Empathy and a fear that you or a family member may one day be a beggar……if this is so
Come back to the words of wise man ‘The world is made up of the Takers and the Taken’
Remember when you see a beggar on the street, chances are through the food they eat, the alcohol they drink, the accommodation they use, they too and possibly are paying more tax and are re-investing in Ireland Inc……these are paying real indirect taxes daily and recycling money in the economy.
|Subject:||Education: ‘Give Vision to the Visionless’ – Jonathan Swift|
|Date:||Monday November 4th, 2013 17:12:53 +0000|
|To:||Citizen Journalism site; undisclosed address list|
Reply to citizen journalism site: Seoirse Thank you for the informative response. Many people have gained both socially and through employment in particular in community employment schemes and it is essential to highlight the point especially now as FAS is being closed down. It is also very important to recognise that FAS faltered through an elite group in management particularly who became side-tracked by a culture of waste of resources and personal aggrandisement. As should always happen, this needs to be identified and we must congratulate Shane Ross (Independent – Dail) and a team of enlightened media people who targeted the head office and whose research has resulted in the closure but also the outing of those who abused their position of ‘power’ through cronyism and corruption.
The new challenge is Solas. 200 people are tasked with policy and empowerment to seek educational opportunities. I agree absolutely with you about the other side of education and that is the ‘action, doing, creating’ in the local community. ANCO was the origin of FAS and it tasked people who had achieved solid apprenticeships in certain trades like carpentry, plumbing, plastering, gardening into the teaching and imparting mentors to unemployed people during the last unemployment crisis in the 1980’s. This in turn resulted in a healthy competition in towns, villages and in urban villages to move from the individualism to the shared community endeavours. Our tourist trail has benefited from the workmanship and input of many people especially those who worked in community employment schemes who were part of this FAS initiative.
Nearly 400,000 people are unemployed; the estimates are that 300,000 have emigrated, and others are in courses once operated by FAS and others.
The time is now to recognise that people are human but the human species is highly flawed; however ‘flawed’ must be recognised, punished, and replaced and now is the time for this to happen. Solas and the ETB’s must embrace a new culture and it is essential that opportunities are provided to as many people as possible, people who are unemployed, to single mothers or fathers, people with disabilities, to young people, to older people to ensure that they have the opportunities to access education either of an academic nature or more importantly of craftsmanship and technology. There is new horizon in restart/repair and Ireland needs to tap into it via the education route.
To be positive we must look at the plans for our city which can be repeated in the smart sustainable urban villages and local country communities. Solas is nominated now to educate the people who will be the actors for the plans. The time is now for people to engage. The opportunities are highlighted in that public submissions are welcomed on proposal, which includes two new civic space.
|Subject:||Austerity is the mantra but for some it is ‘privileges before principles’|
|Date:||Thursday 7th November 2013 12:13:51 +0000|
|To:||email@example.com, Vincent Browne , Shane.Ross@oireachtas.ie , Roisin Shortall et al|
Thursday 7th November, 2013
Interesting times as Ireland forges ahead to extract itself from the Troika and engage with the open markets to raise funds. The message is that we must continue with austere practices because the budget deficit must be tackled and the fact is our debts exceed our capacity to pay in the now and going forward for many decades. The debt rises with compound interest and without a right down it is hard to imagine how Ireland will ever pay it off.
2013 is the centenary of the 1913 Lockout. Socialism challenged capitalism and people like Jim Larkin, James Connolly and many others tried ardently to engage the people through a form of solidarity against the employers who exploited the labour force for their own gain. The Sunday Independent and Shane Ross aims to engage readers with the reasons why these early trade unionists are far removed from those who presently supposedly represent their employees. It is time for the ordinary people to remove the rose tinted glasses and start coming to terms with the fact that our present day trade union leadership and members who continue to pay their union dues, have diverged so far down the opposite path of that proposed by trade unions of 1913.
Ross, based on some of the foregoing postings is quite correct when he writes that ‘This year’s commemoration of the centenary of the Lockout has tanked into farce’. It is beyond belief that ‘TG4 opted for a more modern type of socialist, so modern that his socialism is almost invisible’. They chose to select a current director of the Central Bank to commemorate both Larkin and Connolly in their progamme on the Lockout. The person selected was a member of the Central Bank but he also served as a director of FAS; worse still he served at the time when the elites of the FAS staff endorsed and contributed to that culture of waste that is a product of cronyism pending corruption. The ‘privileges’ became the guiding light and ‘principles’ were demoted to near extinction. Work for these privileged people became devoid of the principles, obligations, and ethics that should prevail. These were the people to be found highly remunerated on the many quangos so indulged and well paid for by the State (but remember it is the tax payers and citizens of the State who really pay). TG4 selected none other than Dr Des Geraghty.
To quote Shane Ross from his article in last Sunday’s Independent newspaper:-
“Comrade Des became Dr Des. He collected gigs galore, adding the powerful, well paid RTE Authority and the chair of the obscure Affordable Homes Partnership to his portfolio. The AHP was a particularly nice little earner, one of the multiple social partnership quangos that broke out like a plague ….
In the AHP’s first year Dr Des earned e13,000 as chairman, but his part-time reward rocketed to e30,000 in 2006 and 2007 before reverting to e25,000 in 2008. The quango was eventually disbanded in ignominy, a casualty of the Celtic collapse”.
Culture of waste, cronyism, corruption needs a root and branch cost benefit analysis applied and urgently. Surely these people must be paid fairly but excessively should not be acceptable.
Liberty Hall today stands tall but what are they really doing for all the people who have become unemployed, those who are under-employed, those in the services who are being forced by companies like Starbucks, Tesco and so many other companies that avail of the favourable tax breaks and who are basically tricking staff into zero-hour contracts. The unemployed figures are reducing but it is from a high in excess of 400,000 with more than 300,000 who have emigrated. FAS (dissolved) only now is being dealt with, as Solas is rolled out. We know it will have 200 people; the function being education/enhanced skill provision with the objective of providing trained personnel for work opportunities through an independent sources. However trade unions must take some responsibility towards the plight of their members now. They owe those who have paid their dues over a centenary and their duty is to function with integrity for all workers and this includes their responsibility for up-skilling the members they have who are casualties of the Celtic Tiger. That Siptu e32 mn treasury amount that is supposed to be in their bank accounts earning virtually no interest, should be used for the people who need work. Crowdfunding says that they could provide some of this money and create opportunities for small to medium sized enterprises and entrepreneurhship.
Again to quote Shane Ross
“Dr Des, most of his colleagues in ICTU and some of his successors in Siptu are among the most conservative, reactionary forces in Ireland. They are no more the successors of Larkin and Connolly than Michael McDowell or Constantin Gurdgiev. The are the arch insiders, some sitting on boards to beat the band, collecting fees by the bucketful, others influencing policy at the highest level”,
|Subject:||Dire economic times say opportunities must be taken: its about value content: JobBridge FAS Solas Tuesday November 12th, 2013 16:38 Seoirse contributor to citizen journalism site.|
|Date:||Tuesday 12th November, 2013 19:12:48 +0000|
|To:||Vincent Browne , firstname.lastname@example.org, Roisin Shortall ; Citizen Journalism site; undisclosed address list|
Tuesday 12th November 2013 (Reply to Seoirse)
Fair comment. Community employment schemes organised by FAS greatly enhanced the lives of people; FAS CE schemes enabled people to work in their local communities, to contribute and receive additional payments to social welfare payments. Community employment schemes paved the way for single mothers, people with disabilities, empty nest women, to re-enter the work-force on a part-time basis. In many cases, these CE schemes facilitated people to move into further education. Unfortunately, the problem, as you state, relates to those who exploit the vulnerabilities of those they perceive to be weak and who climb up on their backs through cronyism, corruption and that attitude that says we will ape our masters of decadence and financial abundance, and we will do it better because we can do so. Shame on these people and now is the time for them to be reprimanded and where possible to be indicted for any criminal practices relating to corruption that they engaged in. The time is here for change. Privileges reined throughout the Tiger for the elites and their sycophants but it is now time for Principles to lead the way.
Hedonistic is about the decadence of people who exploit the vulnerable and CelticTiger Ireland was the period of hedonism for the developers, the bankers, the cash economy, academia, the farmers who sold their land having tangled with the local authorities to change the rating from agriculture to housing; exploiters of all kinds are easily identified now. Fianna Fail endorsed the credence of the new Ireland. Could it last, probably not!
What have we now:- a quagmire of shifting sands smothered by the remnants of those who brought this country to its knees, through their cronyism, which if the evidence that we witness now tells us that corruption was the blight. Tribunals were established to establish if corruption existed but the truth is we were all conned to believe that corruption was being identified, linked to business people, developers, even to a former Taoiseach, and politicians but it was apathy that said ‘let them go’, the evidence from the tribunals would not be eligible for courts.
FAS, the semi-state enterprise, did some good but was consumed by those who had access to power who greedily followed the leaders on the gravy train starting at the top with the EU, to Government, to developers, to private sector; all those who could use that little extra bit of power they had to gain power for their personal egos at the cost of the vulnerable.
Where to now? The crisis now merits different attitudes. JobBridge may be unfair but then do people want to de-skill, lose discipline of work mentality, leave themselves prone to mental health problems, or would they be willing to take the chance over a life-time span to work for the nine month period at 50 euros + their dole allowance? Times we hope are changing and social media is the dimension that can make significant changes in the lives of people and therefore involvement in a work environment proves essential.
Youth unemployment is never to be recommended. The economic crisis is dire. Ireland is repaying 1 billion euros per month in its budget deficit and we are being asked to endorse our perceived shallow excellence in that we are now able to exit the bail-out programme. The reflection therein is something like Narcissus and echo. Ireland is echo and we need every human being in our country contributing to this society through work, through social media, through citizen journalism and in every way possible including intra-generational. Young people are the future and they need to be engaged to act as those who will determine whether Ireland can achieve a write-down on the debt we owe.
Education is the way forward for those who are unemployed. Use the opportunities you get as a treasure that must not be wasted.
FAS is gone but keep tapping on the door of Solas until they hear you and provide the work opportunities.
Did you know that yesterday was Science Day? Do you know that this week is Science Week? Check out your local library and attend some of the science events making it part of your 2014/15 plan to get back into education so that you can ensure Ruairi Quinn will commit funds for back to education programmes going forward. Use these events to enlighten individuals to check out opportunities and engage with them.
|Subject:||“Troika exit” but the bitter medicine rests with the banks to administer and it is now, Debt Resolution|
|Date:||Monday 18th November 2013 17:47:25 +0000|
|To:||Citizen Journalism site; undisclosed address list|
There are many people now living in fear of the “letter” that states they must leave their home and given the date and time that the sheriff will arrive.
What are the options: Will it be the Insolvency Service of Ireland (“ISI”) option or is the option that taken by some of the developers who led Ireland to this economic crisis but who have the expertise and advise them to take the UK or the US tourist bankruptcy route?
Not all people have the opportunities to shift their Centre of Main Interest (COMI) to the UK or the US. What will ISI do for them? How will the banks deal with its customers who are in arrears and who possibly will never be able to pay their debts?
There may be some hope. Allied Irish Banks (the peoples’ bank in that it is owned now by the State) have adopted or so it appears, a sensible approach and have provided a new service starting today, to assist customers of their bank to find long-term solutions to their financial problems. 300 have already made contact.
The Irish Mortgage Holders’ Organisation (IMHO) and AIB Group hopes to help 1,000 customers find solutions to tackling their arrears in a six month pilot project. Those in difficulty will be provided by the IMHO with a designated contact person, who will help complete a standard financial statement (SFS) which is key to finding a suitable solution. The help will be provided over the phone, online or in person.
Is this pure tokenism? 1,000 people is so few when we all know people who are casualties and who live daily waiting for the banks to tell them get out of their homes! These are not the elites who are being forced out of Shrewsbury Road with provision for £3,500 per month to find them alternative accommodation in Dublin 4. These people have to deal with the real fear of trying to negotiate themselves onto the housing list of the local council or attempting to find accommodating in the rental market. Too few solutions; too much hardship. We know that many people are falling victims especially when we hear arguments being put forward that Gardai, soldiers and prison officers, because of their vulnerability to being bribed may be excluded from having their names put on a public register if they succeed in getting a state-approved debt deal. According to the campaigner David Hall as many as one officer each day is becoming insolvent, and others are actually losing their homes through bankruptcy. AIB and its pilot project with IMHO for 1,000 over six month,s pales into insignificance. The crisis is upon us and tokenism is but a gesture to distract the attention from the realities. AIB, we must not forget, in this pilot scheme of 1,000, is offering free advice to the customers of not alone AIB, but EBS and Haven ‘who are in mortgage arrears but have yet to approach their lender to seek a deal’.
People who can get their bank or other creditors to allow them do a debt settlement arrangement will be listed on a website of the Insolvency Service. There are some 40,000 members of the three services…..and in Mr Hall’s opinion many of these would need to seek debt deals from their banks.
By Michelle Clarke (Blake)
|Subject:||The supply chain with the importance to value the human input; Trade Unions & Integrity and Transparency|
|Date:||Tuesday 19th November 2013 17:36:29 +0000|
|To:||Alan Shatter , Clare Daly , email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org , Joe.Higgins@oireachtas.ie, Liam-IPRT , Vincent Browne ; Citizen Journalism; undisclosed address list.|
Shane Ross:- what a great reminder and piece of reporting on the importance of access for journalists to Freedom of Information. The cronyism, the corruption, the stand down by so many of the elites that held court in FAS head office in Upper Baggot Street and the culture of connivance and self agrandisement that polluted all to do with creating opportunities for people looking for employment; and in particular those who are unemployed. The “sick” culture is only now being expugned and they tell us the new entity Solas is open. We must not forget that the trade unions through bench-marking gave these elites support and entrenchment. The question now for our citizens is will Solas be the mentor for post Troika Ireland ensuring that those in positions of power lead with Principles instead of Privileges as the motivational factor. Corruption must be stood down. To the Jurors who returned the verdicts yesterday on Byrne. Well done.
Principles were forfeited by the elites who wanted privileges. This includes the MNC’s and the question today is what do Mandate or other trade unions for that matter actually do for people who are abused by the Labour laws, so long fought for in this country?
Zero hours contracts is the mantra of the retail/service sector these days. It’s great to play God and appoint a supervisor who keeps employees on their toes in that they never know how many hours they will be working in a given week. Double time is but a memory. Starbucks, Tesco are but two examples. People need to alert themselves to the human input in the chain of supply when you go for a cup of coffee, a meal, to a pub. The coffee is about cost but also there is a value quotient and that is to do with people.
I stand to be corrected by Tesco but it is my impression they pride themselves on the openings they have for workers who are impaired by intellectual disabilities. If this is so, then one would expect them to have the understanding and due diligence to make provision that people in a position of ‘surveillance’ are not allowed to bully, intimidate, and maliciously target people on the shop floor. For those who do not know about Sheltered Employment, I attach the following
Protect Sheltered Workshops | Change.org
People with intellectual or developmental disabilities (I/DD), which includes mental retardation, Down syndrome, and cerebral palsy, have the right to…
Shame on the trade unions who are turning a blind eye to the practices of large retail and service worker businesses.
Mandate: Do you understand exactly the injustice that is done to a person who has worked for 13 years at Tescos, and who falls into the category named above ie ‘sheltered employment’. You don’t.
You are in the employers’ pocket. For that matter you are even in the pocket of the man who monitors the cameras in store and corporatism. If someone has worked for 13 years; surely cognizance of their intellectual disabilities means that certain circumstances may be beyond their grasp. Does a kangaroo court of the manager, the trade union representative, the surveillance man and one other honestly and truthfully have the power to summon the person, show him the evidence, tell him to go and remove his belongings from his locker and then fire him. The crime is petty. In a trial at court, it is improbable that the case would ever leave the Garda station, let alone be approved by the DPP. This case I will write about – it ended up in the criminal court.
Trade Unions do your job and protect the vulnerable.
Imagine a man who dedicated to his function on the shop floor; to the people who are the customers at the location, who is given an identity where in another time he may have been institutionalised.
Mandate: Its easy to trample on the rights of the vulnerable and side with the ‘team’ but it is wrong, very wrong because in these times of economic hardship, this man will never get work and because he lives in the family home he is not entitled to the dole so he is made a total dependent, and is made feel like a burden. Wrong is no man’s right. This is a moral wrong but also cannot be legally substantiated.
|Date:||Wednesday 20th November 2013 16:39:07 +0000|
|To:||Citizen Journalism; undisclosed address list|
|Subject:||Join the Truth Team.|
|Date:||Thursday 21st November 2013 16:54:44 +0000|
|To:||Citizen Journalism site; undisclosed address list|
by Michelle Clarke
Persistence in the pursuit of what is morally right eventually acknowledged in Wales.
Hugh Murphy’s connectedness with the plight of the Belfast dockers, their exposure to asbestos, the collusion between the employers and the Trade Union ITGWU now Siptu to not provide adequate safety gear and who negligently and recklessly left the workers exposed to asbestos fibres. Scans now tell us that the fibres lodged in their bodies, often the lungs, sometimes for decades, without due consideration from those trade unions who represented the workers. Sea change may be about to happen. Denial will no longer be the excuse for trade unions as representatives of workers and employers who selectively chose to ignore the link between exposure to asbestos, the decades while it remains latent, the eventual onslaught of cancer. Justice may now prevail as these conspirators against employees are being stood down by the legal and political process. Now political agendas are fighting the cause and in Wales this month the NHS recognises that the costs must be borne by the employers via their insurance.
Let this be a warning now that employers must be stringent to ensure that their employees are protected. In Ireland, the fact that companies especially in construction rarely survive from one generation to another, means that the State will now be faced with having to introduce legislation similar to Wales. The medical profession in Ireland appear so reticent that one can only assume that the political agenda encourages silence. Asbestos exposure causes cancer. Cancer merits research funding and surely there must be funds made available from the EU for research especially related to asbestos origins and the ordinary citizens need to feel assured that the medical profession are focused on accessing available funding from sources like the EU. For this to happen the people of Ireland need to recognise the links between work environments, exposure to asbestos and cancer.
One Big Onion, the play by Hugh Murphy and the poem the Judas Goat (links in earlier postings) are a wake up call for the medical profession particularly, but most importantly, it’s a wake up call to the immorality and greed of the trade unions who literally jumped ship and sided neatly with the employers against the workers in the case of the Belfast Docks. The reality is that the role of the ITGWU/Siptu and other trade unions should have been to stand by the workers, not to align with the employers who also compromised the integrity of the medical profession, and fought for the outcome of the legislation that is passing through Parliament in Wales, this month.
Asbestos NHS treatment cost recovery bill is voted into law
Insurers have claimed legislation would not benefit asbestos sufferers or the NHS
A bill to recover the costs of treating Welsh asbestos patients from businesses or insurers has been passed by assembly members.
It is estimated the new law could raise up to £1m a year for the Welsh NHS.
The bill’s sponsor, Labour AM Mick Antoniw, said it would help people whose lives had been blighted by “this terrible disease”.
The insurance industry has raised concerns, questioning whether the move is within the assembly’s powers.
The NHS seek payment from the Insurers but ultimately recognition means the best medical provision possible for people diagnosed with cancer related to asbestos.
|Date:||Tuesday 26th November 2013 17:02:40 +0000|
|To:||Citizen Journalism site; undisclosed address list|
For the fat cats, those developers who not alone bankrupted our country, their workers, their companies whose basic safety net of contacts remained intact and who eagerly moved themselves to an address in London/England/Scotland, paying rent two years in advance, attending an odd soccer match, making sure to get their hair done locally – these are the people who have already or are just about past the post and are free of all their debts. The debt is but a blip and they are back in business…all we can hope is that they have gained some wisdom from the experience of being a Tourist Bankrupt.
But what happens to the ordinary family here in Ireland or for that matter those who decided to opt out of marriage one because marriage two meant a younger wife, more children and a bigger and better life-style. These are part of the people who have for over five years now struggled with debt like a noose around their neck. How many of these people are beyond work now because of ill-health from undue pressures?
Today we are told that the legislation is now being put in place and acted upon.
Protective certificates will issue from the courts to allow deals to be ‘formalised between the banks, the PIP’s (personal insolvency practitioners) at Grant Thornton and the new Insolvency Service’.
What a relief? or maybe not? How many people will opt for these ‘Debt Deals’?.
Estimates say 15,000 but so many more exist in the mire of negative equity and debt; so let’s not forget about them? 5 out of the 20 are said to have given up their homes, their buy-to-lets so this begs the question what happens to these properties? Will the banks hold them as stock in trade until the bubbles in the property market create new markets for the banks to sell them at a profit or substantially reduce the debt write-off granted?. Is this the banks way, 5 years into the recession to manipulate their balance sheets?
The Irish Independent reports the good news for some today; but we also must recognise that good news for some is moral hazard for others.
£233,000 is to be written off the debt mountain accrued by a Dublin Civil Servant and his wife, a nurse. We must note that both of these are representative of the public sector; have permanent jobs; have pensions and protection by employment rights. Therefore they are in the privilege category. They bought a house and took out a loan for e400,000 during the Celtic Tiger days. Then came negative equity, pressure and regrets. This couple have struck a deal with their banks.
……..their banks will see them voluntarily surrendering their family home and their two buy-to-let properties. But their creditors have agreed to the huge e233,000 debt write-off if they stick to a six year Personal Insolvency Agreement. 6 years represents what exactly we do not really know. What if either party inherits a sum of money; or a promotion and a “top-up”, life insurance if a party dies…. or for that matter the lotto. If any of these factors apply, the incentive is greater for the ‘debt-deal’ to be put in place. The gamble is good for the banks, the PIPS….
However, we need to note that not only did these two public sector workers incur losses through negative equity in their home and in their two buy-to-let properties….they also owed thousands of euros in bank loans, credit cards bills and credit union borrowings. We need to note again that this couple both have employment in the public sector and in no way represent a family dogged by consistent unemployment and massively in debt. What about the people who are both out of work with no realistic opportunities? Who will pledge their case with the banks?
Warnings attached to this personal insolvency stated that the Insolvency Service would be applying rigorous restrictions on lifestyle termed “reasonable living expenses”. However, this public sector employed couple are allowed as much as e4,809 per month. This surely is a departure from the guidelines. Initially, it was said that the “reasonable living expenses” guidelines issued by the Insolvency Service regarded health insurance as a luxury, and stressed that a case would to be made for a second car.
However, whoever represents your case, as in the situation of divorce, is the determinant of the best negotiated deal. You need the car; you need the health insurance; you need whatever – it can be negotiated into your package.
T’s article on newswire (Citizen Journalism site) crosses over into this. The Banks are in the business of making money; AIB today reports it will be returning to profit next year. What can we learn is the question?
Max Keiser on the “financial terrorism” of Royal Bank of Scotland
The headlines have recently reported that the Royal Bank of Scotland owners of Ulster Bank in Ireland carried out widespread fraud and engaged in forcing customers who were repaying their debt and otherwise healthy, into going out of business and this allowed the bank to pick up their assets namely their properties at a fraction of the true costs. They carried out this financial terrorism mostly against small firms who were too small to defend themselves.
|Subject:||JobBridge; FAS & Cronyism|
|Date:||Thursday 5th December 2013 16:46:49 +0000|
|To:||Citizen Journalism; undisclosed address list|
Thursday 5th December 2013
Shocking to think that this could be so at a time when we are told that at last there is a reduction in the number of people unemployed. It is unclear how significant the drop in the number of employed to just under 400,000 is affected by those who emigrate which is estimated at nearly 7,000 each month.
Dan O’Brien reports today in the Irish Independent under the title heading as above. He provides a little history of the job activation schemes for people who were out of work in the last recession in the late 1980’s and early 1990’s. By 1993, unemployment in Ireland was up at 16%. What is key here is that the Celtic Tiger intervened and people gained employment but the cruel irony is that the Government did not think it necessary to cut back spending in employment activation, and the main beneficiary was FAS, the now defrocked state agency. Like the way we tackle the homeless situation, the drugs crisis, charities, the asylum seekers, the bureaucracy and the “Privilege versus Principle” brigade peddle their wares and create industries.
“Inevitably, with lots of cash and little to use it for,taxpayers’ money ended up where it should not have ended up. An industry grew up that helped not the jobless, but trainers who made a good living from providing training courses, many of dubious quality and little relevance to the labour market’.
The 2010 report highlights that almost 1 billion euros a year was being spent and that “too often training programmes were not only useless, but worse than useless – people on some schemes were actually less likely to find work than those who got no help whatsoever’.
So yes, we need to examine JobBridge, FAS remorphed as Solas, the courses that Solas will schedule for the many unemployed at present. It is essential to grasp just how non effective policy to date is in relation to re-training, up-skilling, providing adequate education courses and providing for positive employment as distinct from underemployment.
Before the crash – in 2007 – the number of people on “activation” schemes averaged just over 50,000. As the economy went into free-fall, an additional 300,000 people had joined the dole queues by 2010, but the number of additional places rose by a pitiful 10,000 or so. However, in the mean time albeit some improvement, it is hardly adequate….
Three years on again, the response remains woefully inadequate to deal with the scale of the problem. In the first 10 months of 2013, 77,000 people on average were on schemes, or an additional 17,000 compared to three years ago…… [[/bold
by Michelle Clarke
|Date:||Saturday 7th December 2013 18:25:34 +0000|
|To:||Citizen Journalism site; undisclosed address list|
Saturday 7th December 2013 16:37
Today is the day: Marks and Spencers in Ireland and their employees are on strike. This is the beginning. People are on their knees now for 5 years with Austerity as a mantra constantly beating them into submission while persuading them to accept and not protest. The onslaught has been relentless. Austerity has achieved cuts at every level from pay, to salaries, to pensions, it has introduced property taxes, a Universal Social Charge, PRSI on rental receipts, any open source of income that can be recorded on a data stream is now identified and subject to tax – there is however one exception and that is those tax exiles who use Ireland’s advanced infrastructure yet deem its tax system as archaic and therefore not of merit for their taxes.When the banks collapsed, the first mutterings were heard by the silent take it on the chin brigade. The professionals who worked for their private pension funds, had been advised to invest their money in blue chip stocks like Bank of Ireland, Allied Irish Banks even Anglo Irish Bank. We know what happened to these pension schemes – its but a paltry sum i.e if it is not totally consumed by the charges that these pension brokers and insurance companies exact from these funds. These are the silent minority who struggle to exist with a much reduced pension and for those who have a deposit account, they await news shortly from the State banks that they will have to pay for the luxury of holding same!Then there were those who thought about buying tax advantage properties ie buy-to-lets instead of investing in pensions. We all know what happened to these people as the Banks now seek to seize their properties, the deposits and interest already paid, and add them to the banks’ stock in trade. Then with some luck, a little expertise, and the markets who hold no memories, these dawn raider private equity vultures will buy up the housing stock and then they can ‘rent’ them back to Dublin City Council, who needs to provide housing for over 100,000 people in need of homes or to similar types of ventures funded by housing associations. Capitalism must survive at all costs. Vulture prey and the vulnerable become the losers.Pensions and Ireland. Waterford Glass and Wedgewood. A public company but with a large shareholder named as part of the O’Reilly dynasty. Shareholders invested and then all of sudden Ireland’s crown jewel of Waterford Crystal was bankrupt. Skilled trades people found themselves without their jobs but worse again without their pensions. Independent newspapers tells a similar story about pensions and no doubt many others. Dividends are repaid to investors and suddenly the balance sheet has failed to make the pension contributions and the workers, the bread and butter workers, are the people who lose. Well done to Waterford Crystal, hardship through loss of pensions spurred the workers to use their skill-set and trade and re-invent the wheel and produce Waterford Crystal once more. Furthermore, these workers fought their case to the European Court of Justice and they are entitled to the pensions they were deprived of. The moral here is ‘right is right but wrong is no man’s right’ and this particularly applies to the elites on boards of directors who can withdraw massive dividends or those who blatantly fail to act in the best interests of the employees, their former employees through their pension funds, their investors etc.Aer Lingus, ESB, DAA and all the pension funds that are in difficulties. The advice is don’t wait until it is near your time to retire, engage with the workings of your pension now and speak out for the protections to be put in place now. There is a two tier system in play and for people who are part of the public sector we are told that their pensions are guaranteed. The strikes due now provide an ideal opportunity to understand the importance of providing for a pension in old age. We need to understand that people are living decades longer and will need to work until over 70 or more. For those people with disabilities, we need to introduce the concept that may be looking to return to the workforce in their 50’s or 60’s. The ESB are in debate about a fund greater than 1,000 million ie 1 billion. It is important to think of this amount as part of a fund made up a variety of investments that move with the markets ie losses and gains, it is fluid. The pension trustees are equipped to read the markets to obtain the best deals. The ESB differs in that their employees do not receive the State pension at age 66/65.A point worth consideration is about the whole idea of having more than one pension. There are members of Government who have pensions from their profession, to their position in Government, to a pension for being MEP and even private pension schemes based on the tax allowances provided for higher income tax payers. In America, they refer to double dipping. This can apply to people who marry several times. The option is you get the choice of one pension, the one that pays the largest amount.Opportunity comes to pass not to pause. Pensions are essential and it is now we need to examine how they work and what provisions they will make.
|Subject:||The Public Accounts Committee: The Rule of Law|
|Date:||Wednesday 11th December 2013 17:13:36 +0000|
|To:||Citizen Journalism site; undisclosed address list|
Shane Ross raises the questions…and what do we learn? “A phantom account”. Mesmerised beyond recognition is all that can be said as we learn of what the people who have abused their power explain it away as “culture”.
Culture of waste, culture of abuse of power, culture of cronyism, culture of exploit the vulnerable, culture of greed and self-seeking, culture that says politicians, mandarins and certain elites can have multiple pensions for some and none for others.
The Public Accounts Committee will no doubt continue on its path to hunt down those who have been abusing power, engaging in fraud and corruption, identifying cronyism, which has created multiple conflicts of interest that have been ignored for the core of elites of our society, whose narcissism, ego, often motivated by their greed, while imposing fear on lesser beings. It is these people that we can identify as the “entitled classes” who deserve the rewards while others just work as minions, ever fearful of the uncertainty that leaves them one step away from poverty. When it comes to exploiting our vulnerable people as in the case of the CRC (Central Remedial Clinic), we know we are near rock bottom in the morality stakes and the time has come to stop the blatant exploitation by those who are dedicated to self-seeking pursuits where they are driven by the greed that makes them exploit those they consider to be weaklings. Panorama, BBC 1: the programme on charities focusing on Save the Children, Amnesty and others is essential viewing for those who are concerned about the level of corruption, the impact of cronyism, the links with Corporatism and self-seeking that persists in today’s society.
SFI (Science Foundation Ireland) – what can we say? Conflicts of interest are so often raised as being in existence in multiples but the narrative rolls on and the PR machine in the semi-state sector ensures that the press releases tell SFI’s story rather than examine the queries raised through media sources. All we know is that science is following the commercialisation track and the scientists who spoke out are now evidently sold on ‘commercialisation’ as distinct from positions of aiming to include Ireland as a member of Cern.
Another semi-state features in the Sunday Independent on 8th December 20/12/13 – an article by Nick Webb.
STATE quango Enterprise Ireland has spent 111,000 euros on posh school fees for the children of six of its overseas executives already this year.
Enterprise Ireland has 57 expatriate staff working in 30 overseas offices…..it appears that the amount is for 11 children attending primary and secondary schools’.
What does Enterprise Ireland do?
State funding in 2012 amounted to 293 million euros with over 23 million euros sourced from third parties. The purpose of this funding is to support grant aid to businesses. What does become apparent is that a total unrealistic amount is paid ie 86 million euro for the administration and running costs of EI.
What is the justification of the 86 million euro administration costs?
|Subject:||Ireland for Sale: NAMA portfolio equates to 70 bn euros+|
|Date:||Thursday 19th December 2013 20:56:30 +0000|
|To:||Alan Shatter , Alex White , Jimmy Deenihan , email@example.com; Citizen Journalism site; undisclosed address list|
The crest of a wave has arrived and the vultures known as private equity groups are circling and selecting the best we have to offer. Why not? Its called business and we all know by now that markets really don’t have memories and when opportunities arise there always will be the risk-takers who are driven by the rewards. This time we have Blackstone (largest landlord of properties in America; Kennedy Wilson, and for more names just check out Ian Kehoe’s article in the Sunday Times last week).
What do we need to do about this in Ireland? Truthfully, there is nothing we really can do but be aware of what we are selling and about ensuring fair values are achieved. To do this we need to know that NAMA and its employees (who are bound by the Official Secret’s Act) adhere to the law and abide by the rules. We need no insider dealing. We need to know that at every level of this powerful entity called NAMA that is both buyer and seller of vast quantities of substantially written down in value properties, ensures that each of its employees at every level understands that they have access to information about property that puts them in a privileged position of financial gain if they make the decision to abuse their power. The Rule of Law must be the deterrent and as Madoff was found accused in the US and sentenced to decades in prison, the same will apply to those charged and found guilty in Ireland.
Ireland Inc and the for sale sign globally should now insist that if we must sell our assets, that at least we have given them an endorsement in the markets that the opportunity is here in Ireland now and going forward so that we can have as many bidders as possible to ensure the best value. Transparency is essential, insider dealing and abuse of power is shunned.
What about Georgian Dublin? The Budget has created tax breaks for the family home and this is good news to halt the ever increasing grey to black economy that side-tracks revenue from the Exchequer. Georgian Dublin has many houses some converted to offices but many abandoned. Is it not time to encourage developers to renovate these houses creating apartments for people to live in and revive inner city living to the new smart economy urban spaces found elsewhere.
For consideration: Jimmy Dennihan TD Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht replied to a recent email about property in Dublin 4.
Part IV of the Planning and Development Acts 2000, as amended, provides for the protection of architectural heritage. The Act gives primary responsibility to planning authorities to identify and protect architectural heritage by including them on the Record of Protected Structures. Inclusion on the Record of Protected Structures places a duty of care on the owners and occupiers of protected structures and also gives planning authorities powers to deal with development proposals affecting them and to seek to safeguard their future. Dublin City Council is the relevant planning authority in this case.
|Subject:||Prisons (Pups Behind Bars et al)|
|Date:||Monday 23rd December 2013 18:02:24 +0000|
Acquaint is the word that comes to mind with those who are deprived of their freedom this Christmas.
Use the opportunity to Google and find out about programmes that enlighten peoples’ attitudes to more rehabilitative/restorative based justice programmes.
To ground the senses my suggestion is to check out Pups behind Bars; it links to Oprah Winfrey, to you-tube but the message resounds. Take the human being, the circumstances, the paradox, the bipolarity, and the vision of a woman who sees that through dogs she can connect prisoners on death row with soldiers depleted by post traumatic stress disorder, depression, loss of limbs, and form a connection, a bond that says compassion is a teacher and the link between man and dog can traverse that great divide between those called criminals and those who are the wounded soldiers of the wars engaged in under the credo of quelling rebels in far off lands….as someone recently said, Africa, the continent, is undergoing its own world-war as Europe did in WW1 and WW2.
To Irish prisoners in the Irish prisons the question for us to ask if there is any news out there that will inspire the Inspector of Prisons, the Department of Justice, and other bodies to engage with Restorative Justice and pledge themselves to a fairer system in 2014. To piggy back based on the trials and outcomes of other Nations is a good start for a small Island country like Ireland.
Today’s English Times has a little snippet! The title: ‘Youngsters to sentence their fellow teenagers’
Youngsters, some as young as 14, in a community court setting, are to be selected to hear cases against people in the 10-25 age group. This is a watch this space initiative for Ireland.
PC Mark Walsh, of Hampshire constabulary said:-
This initiative is going to bring together the victim of the crime and the perpetrator of the crime. Volunteers will be to trained to give punishments for the “low level” crimes now dealt with by the police. More serious cases will continue to be heard by magistrates and Judges.
PC Walsh states further that there is no compulsion on the victim to attend or for the perpetrator to take part.
Today’s media reports about two young women who face 6 years imprisonment in a South America hell-hole of a prison. They received food covered in cock-roaches. Yes, smuggling drugs is wrong but these women are only in their early twenties and they pay a high price for their greed and foolishness.Can we use social media to have them returned to Ireland and the UK to serve their sentences. Having lived in Zimbabwe, these prisons in third world countries, are beyond what is reasonable for citizens of both England and Ireland.
|Subject:||The bigger the financial deal secured in negotiation, the greater the contributions for the trade unions|
|Date:||Monday 30th December 2013 16:40:53 +0000|
|To:||Citizen Journalism site; undisclosed email list|
Monday 30th December 2013
It is beyond credibility that the issue of the IMO, George McNeice, former Chief Executive, Merrigan and the HSE slush fund with SIPTU, receive so little media attention.
It is evident that a powder keg exists with a significant number of self appointed elite managers, politicians and mandarins who have nurtured cocoons both for their present salaries and their pension deals going forward that divide them, through their organisation and planning based on their self needs, from other mere mortals and in particular the poor and the vulnerable.
2014 is the year for self realisation and let that be for people on both sides of that invisible fence. Adam Smith’s Invisible Hand is in the shadows and the Scales of Justice are so heavilty weighted by white collar criminal practice; social welfare fraud; and the silent one that must now be outed ie healthcare fraud.
The trail starts as follows and let’s start asking questions now?
McNeice negotiated his deal down from £24 million to £9.7 million. The man was Chief Executive at the Irish Medical Organisation – a trade union for doctors and consultants. Why did so few doctors fail to place checks and balances on his level of power; or should we say abuse of power, an abuse of power quite evidently shared by those who had secured their privileged deals within their privileged profession. The young doctors were not considered. The EU law was ignored because it provided the fodder for the higher elites who needed cover in their public/private professions using private beds in public hospitals and no doubt using young doctors on the basis of Grace and Favour. We need equality; we need to urgently realise that a society treat their vulnerable.
Zero contract hours have become the order of the day in the retail sector. If the IMO could exploit their young newly trained medical doctors by failing to comply with the EU laws, what does it say for other vulnerable people in Ireland?
To the parents of the young doctor just qualified – a beautiful young woman harassed by long hours, stress, anxiety and no support in Tallaght hospital. What do we really want to say? Suicide is a life sentence for a family who remain behind. We often think that doctors are above suicide but the truth is the profession stigmatise, deny and hide away from the fact that many of their fold are lost to suicide. To study medicine in Ireland requires much study and huge expense both to families, to students and to the taxpayers. For the IMO to shelter the elites at the expense of the younger and more vulnerable is an absolute disgrace.
Professor Crown – I commend you using Senate Privilege and verbalising the truth about the “healthcare fraud” that is eating away at the heart of our medical system. We need more whistleblowers; we need to hone in on the quangos, the charities, the people who pretend to care for the vulnerable but who are the worst exploiters of same.
The HSE has fostered out its functions to too many charities/NGO’s/Church groups etc, each of whom has to have its own corporate type board of directors and nominees. Bureaucracy is smothering the potential of the HSE to operate without the scandals of abuse of power that can be identified regarding those with mental health issues, those with addiction, those who are homeless. The Pentecostal Church and their regime of recruiting down and outs and re-modelling them….needs urgent attention. The Hade family and their Church and the courses they run for people with drug addiction; the fact that Dublin City Councils provides houses without proper regulation through their organisation needs attention.
2014 must be the year that we tackle the endemic cronyism, corruption, abuse of power, in managerialism in particular.
Mental health is sidelined because we have no real voice.
A diagnosis at one time said to St Lomans or other places you must go and never return. 20,000 people found themselves incarcerated up to the 1980’s. However, there were promises that Community Care would cater for these people as they were encouraged to leave the hospitals.
This Christmas, ask yourself about these people. Look at the homeless on our streets and sidelined to the hostels. Look at those in the HSE care homes. How can it be that their hair has not been washed for weeks, their clothers are dirty, they are unkept. Their teeth are rotten from the medications. Yet we have a Government that target mental health because it is easy to say less funds for them. What about the Horizon programme that researched the re-integration of people with mental health problems back into society completed in the 1990’s? What happens in Germany? Ireland must stand ashamed. Rotten teeth through medications stigmatises and guarantees that there will be no return to the workforce for these people.