Smash the NAMA Republic!

Smash the NAMA Republic!

Private Bank Bailout

On September 29th 2008 the Dublin government announced, in a surprise move, that it intended to underwrite the entire Irish private banking sector. In parallel to agreeing to bailout the private banks the Dublin government launched a public relations offensive which assured the public that the ‘fundamentals’ of the Irish banks were still sound; that the issue was simply one of ‘liquidity’ and that while the bank guarantee had a potential liability of more than €400billion euro, the Dublin government did not expect a cent of taxpayers’ money to be drawn down. Brian Lenihan, the Twenty-Six County Minister for Finance, went so far as to say that is was, ‘“the cheapest bailout in the world so far”.

Within weeks it was apparent that the ‘fundamentals’ of Ireland’s private banks were far from sound. In a decade long orgy of greed and avarice a handful of private banks had fuelled a property boom without equal in Irish or European history. And now the chickens were coming home to roost. At first it appeared that the problems were largely limited to Anglo Irish Bank, but as the months slipped by it became apparent that virtually all of the main lending institutions were basically bankrupt – Anglo Irish Bank, Allied Irish Bank, Bank of Ireland, Irish Nationwide and the Educational Building Society – all financial Titanics, all holed below the water line. The only difference between them? The speed at which they were sinking.

Bank Nationalisation

Sixteen months after the bank guarantee scheme was launched the Dublin government bowed to the inevitable and privatised Anglo Irish Bank in January 2009. In March 2010 Irish Nationwide followed suit when the Dublin government took a ‘special investment share’ – nationalisation by any other name. In May 2010 the government took a majority shareholding in EBS, the largest building society in the state. By the second anniversary of the launch of the bank guarantee scheme, in September 2010, Allied Irish Bank, the largest bank in the state, was ninety percent owned by the Dublin government – de facto nationalisation. In addition to the nationalisation of these four financial institutions the state also pumped billions of Euros into Bank of Ireland.

NAMA

In Brian Lenihan’s emergency budget of April 2009 he announced the creation of a new statutory body, the National Assets Management Agency, to act as dumping ground for the Celtic Tiger-era ‘impaired’ loans’ of the private banks. In other words, all of the loans that property developers were now unable to repay were to be bought from the private banks by the taxpayer.

With the creation of NAMA the Dublin government effectively nationalised the loss making debts of the banks, whilst simultaneously pumping endless billions of Euros into the self same banks to prevent them from going under. In November of 2009 NAMA was given legislative effect. Thus with the stroke of a pen the NAMA Republic was born.

Total Cost of Bank Bailout & NAMA

Jail the BankersNobody knows what the total combined cost of the bank bailout and NAMA will ultimately be. In September 2010 the Central Bank estimated that the bank bailout would cost a total of €50billion, a figure which some analysts believe will rise to closer to €70billion. It should be noted that this figure was arrived at before the tsunami of defaulting domestic mortgages hits - an inevitability following the collapse of the property market and a period of prolonged mass unemployment.

Estimates for the final cost of NAMA are even more difficult to estimate as the long term values for the assets now owned by NAMA are impossible to calculate. What is known is that NAMA will pay an estimated €40billion to purchase the ‘impaired’ loans of the private banks, from which an unknown amount of money will be recouped through repayments and the sell-off of assets.

The combined total cost of the bank bailout and NAMA may, therefore, in the short-term, exceed a staggering €110billion. While some monies may well be recouped from the eventual sale of NAMA assets, this reduction will have to be offset against the interest that will have to be paid on the vast borrowings that have been undertaken to fund both NAMA and the bailout. To put that figure in context, it is roughly three times the entire annual budget of the Dublin government in 2010.

The Twenty-Six Counties – A Failed State

While there has been much media debate about the final financial cost of the bank bailout and NAMA there has been much less focus on the social cost of the economic depression. This flawed prioritisation, which places Euros and Cents ahead of the interests of the people at large, sits in perfect harmony with the greasy till politics that have plagued the Twenty-Six Counties since the foundation of the state.

For ninety years the entire infrastructure of the Twenty-Six County state has been used to protect and promote the interests of powerful special interest groups. At various times the political class, the Catholic Church, large farmers, property developers, landlords, bankers and multinational corporations, amongst others, have had undue influence on the social, economic and political development of not only the Twenty Six Counties, but the entire Irish nation.

At no point have the interests of the bulk of the people been placed ahead of the interests of these various special interest groups. From the oppression of the Cumman Na nGaedhael government of the 1930’s, to the Catholic Church dominated reign of De Velera, to the corruption of the Charles J Haughey era, through to the economic disaster of today , not once have the workers who create the wealth of this country been in control of their individual and collective destinies. The NAMA Republic is just the latest cruel parody of the Republic envisioned by Connolly and Pearse and the other leaders of the 1916 Rising.

A Thirty-Two County Democratic Socialist Republic

The political establishment, the corporate media and the business class would have you believe that the solution to the current economic depression lies in higher taxes on low paid workers and cutbacks to public services. They would also have you believe that the only choice now left is the choice between the bailout funds of the International Monetary Fund and the European Union.

But we, the people of Ireland, have another choice. We can choose to put the interests of the bulk of the people ahead of the special interests groups. We can choose to put in place a true Irish democracy – economic as well as political, where the wealth, and wealth producing resources of the country, are placed under the control of all of the people, to be used for all of our benefits. In short we can take asunder the NAMA Republic and reclaim our country through the creation of a Thirty-Two County Democratic Socialist Republic.

Click on the links below to read stories from the éirígí news archive related to the Smash the NAMA Republic campaign.

 

Related News Stories from the éirígí Archives

29/03/12: Jail Not Bail! Anglo Monies Cannot be Paid Over....Cathaoirleach éirígí Brian Leeson has called for the ending of the public bail out of the private banking sector and the imprisonment of those responsible for the banking collapse.....read more>>

22/02/12: Minihan Welcomes DEIS Schools Victory....éirígí Dublin City Councillor Louise Minihan has described the decision by the Fine Gael Labour Government to reverse cuts to DEIS school initiative as “a victory for the parents, teachers, students and the communities who organised in defence of their schools”.....read more>>

20/12/11: Minihan Condemns Ballyfermot Local Drugs Task Force Cuts....éirígí spokesperson Councillor Louise Minihan has described cuts of 2.4 per cent to the Ballyfermot Local Drugs Task Force as a disastrous decision.....read more>>

    06/12/11: éirígí welcomes rise in student militancy....

    05/12/11: Here Are The Shirts Off Our Backs....

    05/12/11: Pre-Budget Protest in Inchicore....

    01/12/11: éirígí Pre-Budget Protests Announced....

    23/11/11: Something Stinking at IBEC Conference....

    22/11/11: éirígí Slam Proposed Public Sector Job Losses....

    21/11/11: The Experience of Unemployment in Ireland....

    18/11/11: Students March Against Attacks on Education....

    15/11/11: éirígí Condemn Attacks on Education System....

    14/10/11: Dozens join éirígí anti-EU/IMF Protest....

    27/07/11: Minihan Slams ‘Bank Welfare Tax’ and Calls for Campaign of Non-Payment....


    25/06/11: Fifth Anglo Irish Protester’s Case Thrown out of Court....

    20/06/11: Labour Party Hypocrisy Exposed with Water Tax Vote....

    13/06/11: Social Welfare – The Real Fraud....

    10/05/11: Saor Éire 2011 A Great Success....

    29/04/11: McCarthy Privatisation Plan – Labour Party Embraces Thatcherism....

    14/04/11: Case Against Anglo Irish Accused Collapses...

    14/03/11: There was No Democratic Revolution – the Rich are Still in Control....

    04/03/11: Fianna Fáil’s Final Act of Treachery...

    01/03/11: Minihan Will Not Pay Harney Fine....

    28/02/11: Minihan Convicted for Harney Paint Protest – Full Court Report....

    24/02/11: Louise Minihan Remains Defiant Ahead of Trial...

    20/02/11: IMF Discussed in Annagry....

    15/02/11: éirígí slams Lenihan’s Valentine’s Gift to Oil Companies....

    13/02/11: Attacks on wages and working conditions continue....

    11/02/11: The Fight-Back is Just Beginning....

    09/02/11: Anti IMF Protest – Pearse Street....

    07/02/11: Building Resistance to the IMF....

    27/01/11: Fight the Cutbacks Demo in Wicklow....

    26/01/11: Coolock Says IMF Get Out....

    25/01/11: Ballyfermot Says GO! to Fianna Fáil....

    19/01/11: State Secures first Anglo Irish Bank Convictions....

    17/01/11: Anglo Irish Bank Protesters to Contest all Charges as Trial Commences...

    16/01/11: Universities: Where the Working Class Need Not Apply....

    15/01/11: Trial of Seven Anglo Irish Bank Protesters to start on Tuesday...

    11/01/11: Unemployment: The Only Growth Industry in Ireland....

    20/12/10: éirígí Slam Vote on IMF Deal as a Sham....

    15/12/10: Minimum Wage, Maximum Shame for Dublin Government...

    14/12/10: Resistance to Cutbacks Grows Across Ireland....

    06/12/10: Take to the Streets, Before the IMF Throws us into them....

    04/12/10: Dungloe Budget Day Protest....

    04/12/10: The IMF and the Great Privatisation Swindle...

    01/12/10: Resistance Mounts Against the Blood Budget....

    29/11/10: Austerity Programme must be met with Civil Disobedience....

    27/11/10: Join the fight back!...

    24/11/10: Oppose Leinster House Consensus for Corporate Welfare....

    24/11/10: Criminal Plan Must Be Defeated....

    20/11/10: IMF Will Entrench the Economics of the Madhouse....

    09/11/10: Austerity Plan Must Be Resisted....

    04/11/10: éirígí Slams Spin, Lies & Censorship....

    03/11/10: Don’t Be Intimidated by Garda Brutality....

    01/11/10: Mary Harney ‘Blood On Your Hands’ Direct Action....

    15/10/10: Damn Your Consensus Cowen – We Want Our Wealth....

    05/10/10: People of Cork Resist Threat to Northside Hospital....

    02/10/10: Workers Pay €50 Billion for Bankers’ Gambling Debts....

    01/10/10: Jail the Bankers and Politicians, Not Protesters....

    09/09/10: Ó Cuív’s workfare proposals must be opposed....

    06/09/10: Promises, Promises: The Rampant Lies from Leinster House....

    10/08/10: Thousands March Against Health Cuts in Letterkenny....

    03/08/10: Date Set for Anglo Irish Bank Protesters Trial....

    16/06/10: Smash the NAMA Republic Campaign Launched in Arklow....

    05/06/10: Why are the Poor Paying for the Crimes of the Rich?....

    28/05/10: The Spectre of Communism: A Latter Day Red Scare....

    21/05/10: Liberty Hall Needs the Spirit of James Connolly....

    20/05/10: Dublin Government’s Class War: The Pensioners Are Next....

    19/05/10: Right to protest asserted on the streets of BÁC....

    17/05/10: éirígí Activist Released....

    16/05/10: Anglo Irish Protest & Garda Attack – Full Report....

    15/05/10: Gardaí Attacks Can’t Stop the Fightback....

    12/05/10: Civil Disobedience Justified....

    05/05/10: Smash the NAMA Republic protest – Ballyfermot....

    03/05/10: Remember James Connolly through protest and action....

    28/04/10: Government attacks continue: Ó Cuív declares war on the unemployed....

    25/04/10: éirígí occupation of Anglo Irish – Full Report....

    24/04/10: Direct Action at Anglo Irish Bank....

    19/04/10: “I will not serve” – Break the connection with capitalism....

    19/04/10: Leinster House Attacks its Public Servants....

    12/04/10: For what died the sons of Róisín? Smash the NAMA Republic....

    01/04/10: This is Criticial Because This is Class War....

    09/02/10: Inchicore shows the way!....

    30/01/10: Ballyfermot Fights Back!....

    11/01/10: Big Increases in Dole Payments for Ireland’s Wealthy....

    20/12/09: Dublin City Council Budget: Robbing the Poor to Pay the Rich....

    16/12/09: Clondalkin Begins To Fight Back....

    15/12/09: Pigs at Feeding Time: Leinster House Parties at Budget Time....

    11/12/09: Who is Guilty of Economic Treason?....

    10/12/09: Fianna Fáil/Green Party Declare War on Workers and the Poor....

    24/11/09: Public Servants take to the Picket Lines....

    09/11/09: Thousands Attend Day of Action....

    02/11/09: It’s Time To Act....

    19/10/09: Protecting the Fat Cats....

    22/09/09: Thousands Oppose NAMA and Cut Backs ....

    18/09/09: It’s Time to Take to The Streets!....

    29/08/09: Bailing out the Rich and Powerful....

    23/08/09: Aontaíonn Pobail Ghaeltachta in Éadan An Bhoird Snip Nua....

    02/08/09: An Bord Snip – Tír gan Teanga, Tír gan Anam!....

    27/07/09: Lenihan Lashes Out at the Low Paid....

    23/07/09: An Bord Snip – Emergency Surgery to Save an Economic Frankenstein....

    20/07/09: An Bord Snip Nua – A Wreckers’ Charter....

 

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