How Will We Fix The Economy?

You’ve had to put up with a lot of ranting and raving from me about unprincipled bankers, thieving property developers and corrupt politicians, for which I make no apology.  They deserve to be called bastards for the crime they’ve committed: treason.

But all the complaining in the world won’t balance the books, so now I’m going to put the question straight to you.

What should the government do to deal with this crisis?  Is there anything they can do, or are we all doomed?

What practical steps should the government take?

What do you think?


Also on Bock:

Economic Treason – Simple Recipe

34 thoughts on “How Will We Fix The Economy?

  1. (1) All TDs, including Biffo, drop to €70,000 a year, no expenses.
    (2) Draconian reform of the public service, including the implementation of the pension levy as proposed.
    (3) A 30% reduction of VAT on all goods, people have to start spending again.
    (4) A massive investment in infrastructure,roads,houses, schools, creating thousands of jobs.
    (5) Everyone that has an income pays tax and prsi at a proportionate level to their earnings.
    (6) A reduction in social welfare payments of a least 10%
    (7) Foreign nationals who arrived here during the boom and are now on the dole should be
    offered €10,000 to fuck off home. €5,000 now, €5,000 when they get home – if they arrive back here again then they receive no dole.
    (8) A complete reform of our banking institutions to encourage foreign and indigenous investment – would you invest money here given the shower that are running our banks?
    (9) A cross party government of unity, the Tallaght strategy for slow learners, to address what is a state of national emergency.
    (10) If you think the above is harsh then consider this; the IMF are giving this country a long look. If they move in then the above will look like an X-Mass wish list. The bottom line for this country is that it costs 55 billion a year to run it and we are only taking in 37 billion.

  2. As I am dropping by late, just one question (for better understanding) according your fifth point, Abdul.
    What do you mean with ‘proportional level’? Could you, please, give an example for two persons, one with low and one with high income?

  3. “Is there anything they can do, or are we all doomed?”

    Were not all doomed, just most of us.

    While The Soldiers of Destiny and their fellow klepocrats the banks (all of them) the developers (all of them) and the leaders of the public service unions (all of them) believed they had found the crock of gold at the end of the Celtic Tiger Rainbow (and intended keeping 90% of it for themselves),

    they failed to recognise that virtually every Government around the world believed they had found the same thing.

    The Globalists sold the world pig in a poke.

    The last decade was funded by the Chinese slave labour (and the manipulation of their currency) and the Shadow Banking System (which created credit out of thin air. You can blame Bill Clinton).

    What to do.

    Repeal the “Government Guarantee Scheme Credit Institutions (Financial Support) Act 2008”.

    Replace it with an emergency financial powers act (to be subsequently authorised by the Citizens at referendum).

    Allow any bank or credit institution that cannot refinance its borrowings to go bankrupt and use the emergency powers to take over the institution and then negotiate a settlement with the creditors.

    It the creditors agree to play ball offer them 75c on the Euro.

    It they don’t play ball (that is if they say fuck you) well then we say fuck them.

    They don’t get a cent.

    Think about it Bock (I’m sure you have). Why is it that no Government in the World is telling the creditors to make a deal? Who are the creditors? What power have they got over our Governments?

    Is it just the power that “they won’t provide more credit”? Fuck them.

    Look at Austria Bock. They have lent €750Bn to Central & East European Sates. The prospect of being repaid in full is slim.

    Who lent the Austrian banks the money to lend it to the CEE?

    These debts must be renegotiated.

    We are doomed Bock, unless our political leaders in the West (including all oppositions) get a pair and tell China & the Shadow Banking System to go fuck themselves.

  4. Sean, – I mean people on as little as 300 euro a week should pay tax, even if only a tenner.
    proportionatley rising according to a progressive tax system, progression in that
    we all pay tax, progressing upwards to the high earners.

  5. Abdul,

    A flat tax is progressive, but not in a socialist way.

    By definition a tax of 20% on all incomne will take nore from one on €1m than it does on one on €20k.

    In the near future all taxes will rise including the dreaded inflation tax.

    That is how welfare payments will be reduced.

    Just like boiling a frog.

  6. Abdul,

    “(9) A cross party government of unity, the Tallaght strategy for slow learners, to address what is a state of national emergency.”..

    I am continually astounded by the number of people who think that Democracy should be thrown overboard simply because it is under pressure.

    Are these people Fascist?

    Maybe Fianna Fail are the slow learners on the Tallaght strategy

    Didn’t Brian Cowen not say a couple of weeks ago in the Dail, when responding to Enda Kenny, that “We’ll do it our way”?

    If you are correct, and you may be, that we are in a National Emergency, it is not for the Dail to conspire to steal from the Citizens.

    The Council Of State should be assembled, and should recommend, or simply act in a martial sense.

    The difficulty with that is, we don’t have a President that was elected, we have a Resident in the Phoenix Park.

    But if the Council Of State chooses to act in a Martial way that must include defaulting on ALL of our foreign debt.

    Why should I as a Citizen accept a cabal of Fianna Fail, Fine Gale & Labour as having any legitimate authority at all.

    No one of the parties in the Dail has a mandate for the current circumstance.
    A General Election is required, not a stitch up.

    Why must Democracy die just because it is challenged?

    Sorry Abdul

    Fuck No 9, FUCK FACISIM.

  7. Abul,

    “(10) If you think the above is harsh then consider this; the IMF are giving this country a long look. If they move in then the above will look like an X-Mass wish list. The bottom line for this country is that it costs 55 billion a year to run it and we are only taking in 37 billion.”

    I think you might be missing the Globalist point.

    The IMF is bankrupt. America is bankrupt. Europe is bankrupt. The UK is bankrupt. The World Bank is bankrupt. For fuck sake wake up.

    Sorry Abdul

    Fuck the IMF.

    Fuck the Globalists who created it and who are now bankrupt.

    Fuck the Fascist Globalist program (including Al Gore).

    Fuck the

    Jesus Abdul,

    Just stop “Drinking the Kool-Aid”

    You don’t have to believe everything you are told.

  8. The bailouts worldwide are a huge mistake – whatever happened to creative destruction? Liberty? Free Markets? A bailout prevents natural recovery. Besides, who decides who gets what portions of the cash? It all comes down to political influence. Which is why Fanny Mae and Freddy Mac are getting disproportionate benefits.

    We need a flat tax rate of, say, 20%. And instead of the massive social welfare system with numerous programs, people earning below a certain amount should receive supplemental pay from the government instead of paying taxes. This is the first step to a truly free economy, where everyone can reach their potential, and where the insecure cannot hold us all hostage by having a big government to fall back on.

    Restrict the role of government to defending our lives and liberty. A police force, military, court and correction system. That’s all we need. If I had a little country to call my own, I would take government out of almost everything. By doing nothing, I would probably go down as the greatest leader in history.

  9. thesystemworks
    March 3rd, 2009

    “The bailouts worldwide are a huge mistake”

    They are not a “huge mistake”.

    They are by design, in a crisis, by, of and for our elite.

    The only reason our Governments are bailing out banks, asset management companies and real-estate is that they have skin in the game.

    Our “Governments” are prepared to sacrifice any and all of their “peoples” to maintain their elite status.

    They don’t care if they send all of your children and grandchildren to a hell of debt as long as they can keep their elite place.

  10. Abdul, point 7 re the “foreign nationals” who arrived during the boom and are now to be given €10k to go home. My wife is English, do we qualify for the €10k? I lived in England during the ’80s & ’90s, do I owe Mr.Brown €10k? In point 8 you seek foreign investment, surly not from the same countries whose citizens you want to send home, or will you be picky about where the money comes from.

  11. 23 million, a chair went for in auction 3 weeks ago and we have some of her work in the national muesum …hmm lets have a jumble sale of some of the artifacts of ireland. Desperate measures have to be taken!

  12. Abdul – thanks. I wasn’t sure if I had understood you correctly.

    All – As the matter is pretty complex, I do understand this as a kind of brainstorming that might easily take quite a while.
    A might suggest an idea that sounds good; B might find a develish crook in a detail; C might get inspired to add an interesting aspect, etc., and – who knows? – finally we might have ‘found’ an alternative to the current state of affairs.

    Having said this, to not let this become too long a comment, thoughts on one aspect I came to think of when reading Abdul’s point 5; and I hope I can put it across. (Sometimes I find it annoying that my German is better than my English).

    Collective bargaining on behalf of the public servants. After the ‘usual’ rituals a result. Let’s say everyone gets (pre-tax) five percent more.
    Emphasis on everyone. The top-ranking official will get his top salary increased by five percent, and so will the nurse and the trash collector [sorry, not sure about the job title] get their salaries increased – which are, though, a few times lower.

    And thus the ‘gap’ is getting wider.

    This brings me to an idea that bases on a study the results of which in my opinion deserve to be seriously (!) pondered.
    In brief, it says that every citizen – irrespective of if s/he has a job or not – should get a base wage that allows to make a (decent) living.

    The very point that should make this proposal interesting even for those throwing their hands up in horror: The model is reputed not only to be affordable, but cheaper than the current ‘system’.

    P.S: As this idea came spontaneously I had no time yet to try finding a link where you could dive deeper into the matter.

  13. No 8, – I said they should be offered the money, not forced unto the plane at gun point – five grand cheque sticking out of the barrel… The offer would be there on a take it or leave it basis. The idea is not mine, it was tried in Spain. Like ourselves, the Senors had a massive building boom, which went bust. They were then left with circa 160,000 immigrants workers signing on. The deal was that they were offered 10 grand to vamoose and not return to Spain for three years. It is an idea that we should seriously look at because we can’t afford to pay unemployed foreigners. It is as simple as that. We can drag all the high felutin ideological arguments we like into the equation. But the bottom line is that if the kitty is empty we won’t be able to pay anyone, least of all ourselves. And if we arrive at the doomsday scenario where we cannot afford social welfare, health and education, this country will be ripped apart with social unrest.

  14. Abdul, while its completely inconceivable that EU States should begin to “deport” each others citizens in the first place, I think you’d find more than 3 million additional – and fairly pissed off – Irish citizens forced to come back to these shores in a retaliatory measure by the UK, Germany, Spain, Holland et al, might result in a net gain in population, delivering a killer blow to an already overburdened taxbase.

    Putting up barriers in Europe didn’t work in the 1930’s either.

    btw, Spain made that offer to immigrants who came from Latin America and Philippines, your proposal, even of a voluntary repatriation, would counter just about every bit of EU workers legislation on the Charter.

  15. On a related, but tenuous, line.
    I’ve been reading Warren Buffet (Spelling?) and his apology to his clients. He said he put money into shares for 2 Irish banks and so far has lost about $200 million.

    BUT. He doesn’t say he’s trying to offload them…

    BOI shares have dropped from around E20 to around 20c.
    AIB from about E35 to about 40C.

    Can the Iirish gov. allow both banks to collapse. Won’t they at least try to keep some semblance of civilization about the country by doing all to keep one bank alive.
    Won’t this all pass in time.

    Won’t the share price go back up to near where it was in a couple of years or so…

    Jesus if I had a spare grand I’d split it and buy about 1500 shares in each bank. Cost c. E500 each…
    Return: you work it out. 1500 x 20 =

    Sorry, I’m a capitalist at heart, it seems…

  16. Hoof, – I’ll say it again – the offer is on a take it or leave it basis, no one is being forced anywhere.

  17. Snooker, – I see BOI intend to introduce stringent new security measures following last weekends bank hoist.

    A spokeperson from the bank, insisted “yesterday”, that this does not mean that they will be strip searching their CEO’s every time they try to leave the building.

  18. A repealing / closure of all methods of tax avoidance.

    A property tax on ALL rented property and ‘second’ homes, and the phasing in, over time, of domestic rates.

    Increased duties on spirits and tobacco.

    Reduce both VAT rates by 5%.

    Raise capital gains taxes.

    A reduction in corporation tax levels for companies whose owners, directors and executives are fully resident for tax purposes.

    The capping of all public pay, and the payment of public pensions only at age 65 where the recipient is no longer employed.

    A ban on recruitment in the public service and state agencies, with the exception of frontline staff delivering essential professional services – teachers, doctors, nurses, guards etc.

    Capital investment in infrastructure such as public transport, schools and public health facilities.

  19. Conan, – We were with you all the way until the tax on spirits part.Do you mean the ones that allegedly haunt graveyards in the dead of night, or,er am ……drink…wail, tis all we have left. Otherwise, some good concrete suggestions there.

    Greezy, – That’s all we need, Bono, the tax, er am avoidance person, and alleged hypocrite over here telling us how to run our affairs. U2 are sensitive about questions about their tax affairs I read, and I wondered to myself. Basically, they moved all their loot to Holland, which is perfectly legal of course. And t’was the Rolling Stones that tipped them off about theNetherlands. Apparently, musicians only pay 1.5% in every euro in royalty tax there, nice rebate if you can get it to paraphrase Billy Holiday. All that would be fine and dandy if said bands weren’t lambasting governments about chipping in more in foreign aid. But not our Bono; he lambasts away, telling said governments to contribute more of our taxes whileU2 “avoid” making a contribution.

  20. PS Since we own Anglo, and its bad debts, then we effectively own the extensive commercial property on which loans are not being repaid. Get the property valued at today’s prices, take it into public ownership at that value, and pursue the borrowers for the remainder. If needs be foreclose on their remaining assets, including assets moved outside the state.

    The same principle should be applied where we are guaranteeing the viability of other banks.

  21. Perhaps I’m missing the context here BOCK but I can’t see a whole lot wrong with the bail out scenario, provided it’s extended and just tweaked a bit.

    Where everyone receives a few million or so from the bankers (as they are the only schmucks with gazillions stashed anyway) in return for not shooting them, then there should be no problems what so ever!

  22. pps Stop grants for non-productive ‘farming’. Designate significant disadvantaged areas of the country as organic growing regions and offer grant assistance to productive organic small holdings and to organic producers’ co-operatives.

  23. Reduce TDs salaries, stop paying pensions to sitting TDs or to TDs who have not reached 65. All TDs who are employed as teachers or other Gov employees, must make a choice. Gov job or TD salary and lose all increments. Scrap the Seanad. Scrap all non receipted expenses. Scrap all non essential overseas travel, and then insist on economy class on scheduled flights. Start here, show some leadership and then ask Joe Soap to take some pain.

  24. Much of the above from Conan and No. 8 along with:

    Reformation of local government and in doing so, reduce the number of local authorities which are by and large, still based on ancient Saxon baronies, and replace them with 7 or 8 Regional Councils. Unlike the HSE debacle however, in this instance, do away with dead-weight (in particular the Councillors) and duplication of services while streamlining planning, infrastructure and public transport.

    + A schools and health clinics re-building programme.

    + Tax the welfare “entitlements” of those who were fit for work, but refused to work when it was offered back in Tiger time.

  25. I’m surpirsed that no one has thought of the true response to our problems. it has worked before and will work again.
    SELF AID. The concert that gave birth to the Celtic Tiger. For those too young to remember, it was the proudest moment in this country’s long history. oh don’t forget ure shovel if you wanna go to work……..
    If you are not in favour of that could I suggest that Willie, Brian and Big Mary H head to Cheltenham and put the 37 billion on a couple of dead certs……Surely between the 5 million of us, someone could pick a few winners……

  26. I would like to see the TV licence fees redirected into something constructive like education. Paying crazy salaries to these elite club members is a joke.
    If they can’t stand on their own feet like any other business…let them sink.
    Local authorities are a major joke too. Totally top heavy with unproductive squandering and unaccountable staff. If theres a shortfall, they simply jack up the commercial rates. Make them accountable for their spend.
    Unions need to drink deep from the pond of reality. They are now the guardians of the elite.

  27. Interesting chat on Today FM this afternoon – alcohol consumption in this country is down 10% – my instinct tells me that most of the people in here are not contributing to this sad and tragic state of affairs.

    Spirit sales were actually down 60% in December. But despite our new found penchant for sobriety the economy is getting worse….

    How is this? Does Paddy, going forward, operate at a higher economic level when he is rat faced?

    Are we like the Beatles, Stones and Dylan etc etc, who made better records when they were on hard drugs and out of their minds on Jack Daniels.

    And then they cut down on their consumption and it all started to go pear shaped. It was the day the music died.

  28. Abdul no.31.

    …and yet only yesterday it was announced that in the league of consumers of alcohol per country our little island came in second place.

    2nd. !

    Someones not doing their duty, I say.

  29. Does anyone see the irony of somebody called Abdul being concerned that alcohol consumption is falling. Maybe it’s all the repatriated foreigners.

  30. Snookertony, – 2nd spot only,that is a dismaying state of affairs, tragic almost. Paddy, going backward on this occasion, was always in pole position in the Champions League qualifying slot when it came to drinking.

    Secretly we looked at Shane McGowan, and, whilst initially being appalled by his mouth like a robbed orchard like appearance, in our hearts we marveled at his vast journey toward that spot,that spot where Paddy stared existentialism in the eye, and won.

    Freud meantime, once admitted that he couldn’t figure out the Irish, adding, “This is one race of people for whom psychoanalysis is of no use whatsoever”

    Meanwhile, No 8 and irony. In that song by Alanis Morissette, “Isn’t it ironic”, she wails, “a traffic jam and your already late”….

    But it is not ironic to be caught in a traffic jam when your late, it’s just bad luck. It would be ironic, if for instance, you were in charge of traffic control and you were stuck in traffic on your way to a meeting about traffic congestion.

    Some people don’t do irony it seems. They just don’t go there.

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