Posts Tagged ‘The Irish Times

10
Jan
09

Economists need to shut the fuck up

They’re at it again. Today’s Irish Times has a piece about how economists are predicting 10% jobless rates by the middle of the year. Fás economist Brian McCormick went even further, saying we’ll reach 12% by the end of 2009. He warned, “the immediate future for the jobs market depended on the impact of a weak sterling and the credit crunch on the retail sector, as well as the way in which migration trends respond to the changes in the economic environment,” which pulls the simultaneous trick of sounding suitably dire and blaming the immigrants for it. The Indo has a similar piece, which states, “Some economists secretly admitted that their official estimates could be conservative and jobless queues may reach levels not seen since the 1980s.” It’s enough to wonder why we bother getting out of bed.

Well, you know what? Fuck them! The one thing I’ve learn from this whole recession is that there’s nothing quite so useless as an economist. These are the swaggering dickheads who failed to see the recession coming, and let the government get away with wasting money on services that don’t work, giving tax breaks to the country’s super-rich, criminally inflating the housing market, and generally take us all of a fantastic voyage on the good ship “Celtic Tiger”, which sunk like a stone after the first strike of an ice-cube (explained here better than I ever could). If these economists advised banks to invest their (our) money in an online casino they’d have been laughed out of a job. This, on reflection, would have been a far safer option. At least online gambling doesn’t create massive – and quite unmistakable – market bubbles. Ok, there were some economists warning of a possible crisis, but the ease with which these few voices of sanity were ignored largely proves my point that all economists useless. Remember when Bertie suggested that people warning of an economic slowdown should kill themselves and be done with it? I’d love to know what the miserable tit-bag makes of that comment now.

So, now that we’re in the middle of a slump that these knobjockeys helped lead us to, they’re trying to make us feel worse by convincing us there’s no way out of it anytime soon. Well, they can shove their predictions up their holes, because it seems to me that their only talent is to tell us what’s currently happening, like a weatherman who operates by looking out the window and saying, “bit cloudy, might rain.” It also seems to me that reinforcing a constant message that “your job isn’t safe” will undermine consumer confidence further and make the whole thing worse. For all we know (and when I say “we” I’m including economists) the economy might turn around in a month’s time and we’ll wonder what the fuss was about.

Ok, that’s probably not going to happen. All the same, there’s not much use in worrying about it too much, which is what these dicksplashes seem to want, and they don’t expect to be questioned on this because they’re economists and that means they’re experts and know what they’re talking about. The media has given these cunts a free ride for their failures, but there’ll be none of that here. I’m not going to feel bad because they want me to (angry, maybe, but not bad).

05
Dec
08

In this post, I try to get sued by Declan Ganley

It seems that the bauld Ganley is planning to sue RTE over last Thursday’s Prime Time show, in which his business actions were investigated. This is on top of threats to sue Labour’s Joe Costello and seemingly hollow talk of taking action against Colm Keena and The Irish Times.

I did manage to catch Prime Time on Thursday, and I don’t recall anything in it that was particularly damaging. All allegations were address by Ganley in the show itself, or were already well documented and in the public domain. Admittedly, I wasn’t really paying attention. The only part I took interest in was the John McGuirk interview where he was made to look like a fool (this made me happy, as McGuirk is an individual I’ve had the displeasure of meeting prior to his Libertas career).

Allow me to state my opinion on Declan Ganley; he really needs to piss the fuck off. He made a name for himself in amateur politics during the Lisbon Treaty campaign, and did very well for himself. Bully for him. But his 15 minutes are up and he needs to get back to whatever Galway bog-mansion he owns.

Libertas’ campaign during the treaty was one of mistruths and disinformation. For instance, I attended a Libertas public meeting in Ranelagh in which he claimed the treaty if in enacted would assume superiority over the Irish constitution. When I rudely interrupted to ask where in the treaty that was stated, he pointed to an article that perscribed highly qualified scenarios to which national constitutions may be unsuited. I don’t remember exactly what these were, but is certainly wasn’t the scary super-constitution stuff he made it out to be.

He also made much of the EU’s arrogance and cynicism in trying to trick us to accept the treaty. In fairness, he had a point here. There was something horribly high-minded and undemocratic about the way Europe tried to push the treaty on us. But this alone does not mean the treaty was a bad idea, and he was conspicuously silent when Coir (who managed to be even bigger pricks that Libertas) were knowingly telling lies about European super armies and microchipped babies.

But that was then, and he got his way. So why is he still on my telly. In his defence, there has undoubtedly been an effort by The Irish Times and RTE to highlight the ‘controversies’ over this finances. But he’s partly to blame for this for his superficial adherence to campaign funding regulations. It’s time for him fuck off home. He’s the most insignificant successful political activist this country has ever seen. He does not speak for anyone but himself. His objections to the treaty were self-serving. Mr Ganley, you know you’ve never acted in anyone’s interest but your own. Please go away.

In the meantime, here are some facts about Ganley you may not have heard. Declan Ganley has a bizarre leather fetish. He is directly to blame for my joblessness. Prior to the campaign, he spent only three weeks a year in Galway. As a child, he longed for Gargamel to kill the Smurfs. He is bald, which scientists have link to impotence. He has never satisfied a woman. He has attended donkey shows. And if he reads this post he isn’t going to sue me.

28
Nov
08

who we are and what we do

A notion occurred to me yesterday while reading the Christmas gifts supplement that came with The Irish Times. Aside from the self-serving fantasy that I (or seemingly anyone else) can actually afford such wonderful things, I was forced to contemplate our jobs and what the say about us. Towards the end of it they had a vox-pop feature where they ask people what their ideal gifts are, and what they’re going to buy, etc. It was a typically fluff piece to end a typically fluff free magazine.

What I found interesting was that each person interviewed was identified by name and job. It was all “John Murphy: IT consultant” and so on (I can’t give precise examples as I left the rag in my sister’s car when she gave me a ride home. She’s going to be pissed at me now for leaving shit in her car again). The use of people’s careers as a measure to judge them suddenly stuck in my craw.

I don’t think I have ever read a vox-pop type feature where they don’t point out what it is that each person interviewed does. Along with their name, their job is almost certainly referred to, and I’m asking myself why the job? Why not one of the many other facets of a person’s life, such as marital status, how many brothers or sisters they have, or even their yearly income. On occasion ages might be used, but this is almost a rarity. There might also be occasions where the publication in question is aimed at a specific audience, and mentioning the respondents’ job is redundant, but these are really the exceptions that prove the rule. When I was involved in student media we regularly ran vox-pops in the campus newspaper. Obviously, it was pointless for us to mention that interviewees were students, but we would always mention what they studied.

The reason for this isn’t hard to work out. More so that their age or marital status or annual income, an individual’s job is the most useful – if unfair – measure for strangers to assess their personality. When someone expresses an opinion, it’s natural to want to what perspective that opinion stems from. And if someone tells you they’re spending €500+ on their wife’s gift they must expect you to be curious as to what made them so affluent.

The problem with this is that in conveys a sense that a person’s job is a measure of their values. This in turn creates a further problem for the thousands that have been hurled on the dole queues. It used to bother me when women on Winning Streak would say, “he’s unemployed at the moment,” when asked what their husbands do. It seemed to imply they might find a job by the end of the episode. But I understand it now. If what we do is seen as a measure of our worth, those of us doing nothing have to face the prospect of worthlessness.

On a cheerier note, the interview on Wednesday went well, so it looks like I’ll have a couple shifts every other weekend. I don’t really consider it a “job”, but for now it’ll do.