The Burkean

“Try again. Fail again. Fail better” writes Samuel Beckett in his 1983 story “Worstward Ho.”

Micheál Martin obviously took this quip to heart when he went to Brussels and opened the veins of the Irish taxpayer so he could get a pat on the head from his EU masters.

The last time Micheál was in cabinet, his government, with a gun to the head from the Troika, put the Irish state on the hook for a sizzling €64 billion in Franco-German bank debt. Our grandchildren will be paying it off, and we can now see why his party should be called not Fianna Fáil but Fianna Failure.

In Brussels last week, he failed bigger and better than anybody could have thought. He is in the big seat for 3 weeks and he’s sold us out again this time to the tune of €15.7 billion.

This is the debt liability placed on Irish taxpayers shoulders because of his approval of the EU’s Covid Recovery Fund.

Every man, woman and child in Ireland will be ultimately liable for €3,201 debt from 2028 onwards to fund the EU because Micheál Martin approved this EU Fund.

Ireland, with less than 1% of the EU’s population, is going to be the fifth biggest contributor to the EU bailout. We will be liable for the biggest debt per head of population of any state in Europe bar wealthy Luxembourg. And it’s not as if we can afford it.

€15.7 billion is a lot of money for a country with a current public debt of 228 billion euro and 25% of its people unemployed.

As it stands, €44,365 is already owed in public debt by every man, woman and child in the State. We are the 3rd most publicly indebted country in the world.

That €15.7 billion he vouched to Brussels would have been better invested in Irish schools, hospitals, helping the unemployed back to work, and digging small businesses out of bankruptcy caused by the Covid lockdown.

Micheál Martin’s priority must always be the people of Ireland. Yet he worked for anything but the national interest.

As a state, we are heavily indebted already without being drawn deeper into the quagmire of the EU’s growing debtor Union.

Yet the raging Europhile political class are protected by the obscurantism and spin of the Irish media, who largely tried to keep Micheál’s financial capitulation to Brussels quiet. This has generally been the case for our decades of EU membership.

Irish Times Brussels correspondent Naomi O’Leary informs us of the €750 billion EU Recovery Fund and that money would be borrowed on financial markets by the European Commission, some of it paid off by new taxes (digital and plastic etc) or custom levies which have not yet been agreed. But eventually even she gives the game away with her sentence: 

“Member states are the ultimate guarantors of the loans, and so would ultimately be on the hook for repayments if all else fails.” Mmm nice. Thanks Micheál!

We were told by our political leaders on joining the EU (then Common Market) in 1973 that we would sign up and get lots of dough. But it never worked out that way because Ireland has been a huge net contributor to the EU since we joined.

Yes, we received net €44 billion cash since we joined according to Government figures, but the EU/ECB/IMF Troika unjustly imposed €64 bn private bank debt on our backs. Our taxpayers ended up bailing out private Franco-German banks. They also progged €18 billion from our national pension fund. In addition, EU boats have stripped €215 billion worth of fish out of our territorial waters since 1975 according to research by DCU’s Dr Karen Devine using Eurostat figures. 

And has it been worth it? Has the white anting of Irish national democracy – whereby the visible institutions of Dáil and Irish Supreme Court etc remain but denuded of their full power to act for the good of the Irish people and respond to their wishes?

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The Burkean