IMF

Anarchist articles on the intervention of the Internal Monetary Fund in Ireland

Majority refuse to choose flavour of austerity in referendum - huge boycott is something to build on

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With votes still being counted it has become clear that the largest block of potential voters refused to take part in the fiscal compact referendum, rejecting the arguments that they could either vote for 'stability' or against 'austerity'. Quite possibly more people chose to boycott the referendum then the combined Yes and No voters. On top of this some 17% of the population who live and pay tax in Ireland were excluded from voting at all in the referendum. This means as many as 2/3 of the adult population did not vote in the referendum.

Opinion: Is the 'austerity referendum' where the real battleground is?

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Ireland is to have a referendum after all on the EU austerity treaty and a lot of the left is getting unreasonably excited about this. I say unreasonably because my opinion is that the referendum will not really, as the likes of the ULA claim, be a meaningful ballot on austerity. Austerity is not something simply being imposed on us by Europe through this referendum but something our domestic ruling class are already imposing and have been for a few years. Of course they have used the ECB/IMF as the 'bad cop' to scare us with and when passed will use the EU austerity treaty in the same way. But we need to recognize and organize around the fact that our local politicians and capitalist class are not really a 'good cop' eager to help us avoid the attentions of the 'bad cop' making threatening gestures at us across the room.

ECB gives banks 6,250 years worth of Household Tax

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Today the European Central Bank (ECB) gave out 530 billion euros in 3-year term loans to the private banks of the Eurozone. Together with the 490 billion they doled out last December, that's over 1 trillion euros. If pigs could fly and politicians never lied and every household in the country was magically able to pay the hated Household Tax, the total receipt would be 160 million euro. At that rate, it would take 6,250 years to amount to 1 trillion. It would also take 20 years to amount to the 3.2 billion euros the state are handing over to the Anglo bondholders on the 31st March coming.

The Austerity Treaty: Is the call for a referendum a sensible strategy?

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The fiscal treaty, as agreed by EU governments, is clearly an austerity treaty and will impose serious levels of economic and financial pain on Irish workers for years to come.  In his blog ‘Notes On The Front’ Unite economist Michael Taft says “The Government, in signing the Fiscal Treaty, has effectively committed itself to introducing up to €6 billion more in tax increases and spending cuts in the medium-term, over and above what it has already planned”.[1]

Eyewitness to the destruction of Greece under IMF/ECB rule

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This year as every year I went back to the place of my birth, Greece. I go back to Greece once, sometimes twice a year if I can. The experience of my last and recent visit to the place was a different experience all together that has me sick to my stomach and feeling extremely upset. 

Here in Ireland I read about Greece on a daily bases on the web, in the liberal mainstream and radical press and as well as I keep regular contact with people though phone calls and the internet. This gives me the false impression that I understand the current situation in Greece even though I'm living 2500 miles away from the place for a good 11 years now. Primarily I went back  to meet good friends and family but also because I have that odd habit to travel around the place try to figure out things for myself.

Poll supporting IMF/ECB austerity deal shows need for left to offer alternative vision

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An opinion poll in todays' Irish Examiner newspaper shows the depth of resignation and pessimism that has engulfed a large section of the population.  The Red C poll found "almost half the country believes Ireland should continue complying with the terms and conditions of the EU/IMF bailout, which is one year old today. A smaller but still sizeable number are against compliance, believing the bailout agreement represents a bad deal".  48% of those polled favoured continuing on the current path; 33% opposed, even though some 45% think the new government is doing a bad job of managing the economy.

Government to Cut Rent Allowance but NAMA has 90,000 empty units

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1 billion euro in welfare cuts are being hinted at by the government for Decembers budget. One of the areas identified for potential savings is rent allowance. Rent allowance payments total 500 million per year, they are subsidies to help pay the rent of people who qualify due to low incomes, mostly people on the dole or other welfare payments. There are 95,000 recipients.  The money goes to private landlords and is paid on half the housing rental property in the state.

Occupy 'x' arrives in Ireland with Occupy Dame street

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The 'Occupy X' movement arrived in Ireland over the weekend when a core group of around 50 people set up camp at the Central Bank Plaza on Dame street. Numbers grew to a few hundred at times over the next days and nights as supporters came down to join in for a while and the curious stopped to see what was going on. Issues highlighted by participants included the bank bail out, IMF intervention & the ongoing Great Oil & Gas Giveaway.

Back to school for the Eurozone as the Greek deal collapses

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Here we are at the end of the Summer and it’s time for the politicians and bureaucrats of the Eurozone to come back to the office and take a look at what’s lurking in their in-trays. By the same token, it’s also time for all of us interested in fighting back against a Europe of Austerity, to take stock of the lie of the land.

Leprechaun Leader and his goverment of the little people

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Recently an American friend was over buying tatty gifts for the folks back home. She asked me how did the Leprechaun look come about.  Who decided that they were all going to be short arsed red haired people?  It was a good question.  "Does anyone look like that anyway?" she said. Immediately our present prime minister sprang to mind.  

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