Friday, December 31, 2010
Thursday, December 30, 2010
We haven’t seen weather this cold since the Great Irish Frost of 1740-1741 which killed about one fifth of the Irish population.Back then Ireland’s population was only 2.4 million. But as many as 480,000 people are thought to have died during the “Great Frost” which swept across Ireland between 1739 and 1741 during 21 months of bizarre weather.Continue reading at NEWSWHIP.ie
Trinity College history professor David Dickson’s book “Arctic Ireland” explores the event. Mr Dickson says it “remains to this day the longest period of extreme cold in modern European history....
Monday, December 27, 2010
Our Lady of Medjugorje
Queen of Heaven and of the Universe,
Mother of Jesus and of all Mankind,
We humbly apologise to you and to your dearly beloved Son,
For all the blasphemies uttered daily by ungrateful man.
Mary protect us from Satan,
And from all the evil spirits,
who rampage throughout the world,
Save the world from the tidal wave of sin
Which now engulfs it.
Plead with your Son for the conversion of unbelievers
And for the forgiveness of sinners.
Mary we beg you to intercede with Jesus to save the World
( Author: J. Barry)
Saturday, December 25, 2010
Tuesday, December 21, 2010
Monday, December 20, 2010
Ireland: Pro-Life Group responds to judgement of European Court of Human Rights in the case of A, B, and C v Ireland
Family and Life Responds to ECHR Judgement : 21st Dec 10The judgement of the European Court of Human Rights in the case of A,B, and C v. Ireland has given rise to a good deal of confusion regarding its implications for Ireland’s law on abortion. A number of important points need to be borne in mind which have received scant attention in media reports.
Firstly, the Court did not find fault with Ireland’s law on abortion, in fact it recognised that “the protection in Ireland of the right to life of the unborn” is a “legitimate aim” of Irish law. It dismissed the claims of plaintiffs A and B that their rights were infringed by the fact that they could not lawfully obtain abortions in Ireland on grounds of health and wellbeing. The Court dismissed the Irish government’s worrying contention that A and B might have gained approval for abortions in the domestic courts. This is welcome. The Court also stated explicitly that “Article 8 cannot ... be interpreted as conferring a right to abortion”.
The case made by C was unsubstantiated and unsupported by any medical evidence for her claim that her pregnancy endangered her life. By the time that C underwent her abortion it had been confirmed that she did not have an ectopic pregnancy. She was, in fact, able to avail of medical care in Ireland subsequent to her abortion. The Court acknowledged the finding of the 1999 Green Paper on abortion that “there was no medical evidence to suggest that doctors in Ireland did not treat women with cancer or other illnesses on the grounds that the treatment would damage the unborn,” and the testimony of the Chairman of the Institute of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists in 1999 that “where there is a direct physical threat to the life of the pregnant mother, we will intervene always.”
The legal action of the three women was backed by major Irish and international abortion advocates. In addition to the Irish Family Planning Association (an affiliate of the International Planned Parenthood Federation), which funded the litigation, Doctors for Choice (Ireland), the British Pregnancy Advisory Service (BPAS), the Center for Reproductive Rights and the International Reproductive and Sexual Health Law Programme all submitted observations to the Court.
What the Court found was that C’s rights were infringed by the fact that there is no legislation providing a framework for the implementation of the Irish Supreme Court’s ruling in the X Case. The problem is fundamentally one relating to that judgement. The reason there is no such legislation is that it is widely recognised that it would be impossible to draft legislation within the parameters of the X Case judgement that would not widely permit abortion in circumstances that would be unacceptable to a substantial majority of the Irish people. The X Case provided no gestational time limit for abortion and, by recognising a threat of suicide as grounds for abortion, opened the possibility, in effect, of abortion on demand. In the absence of a revisiting of the X Case judgement by the Supreme Court, the only means whereby this problem can be resolved is a further amendment of the Irish Constitution that would allow for legislation clarifying the circumstances in which doctors can intervene to save the life of a pregnant woman. This is why Family & Life is in favour of such an amendment.
If the government believes what it argued in this case, then it must act to ensure that current medical practice which ensures that essential medical treatment is provided to all women in Ireland continues. Medical interventions necessary to save a mother’s life, even if the life of her unborn child is unintentionally lost, are legal and available, but the deliberate killing of the unborn must remain a crime. Family & Life. December 17.
Source: Family and Life
Sunday, December 19, 2010
Friday, December 17, 2010
Leeland is an American Christian rock band from Baytown, Texas. The band was formed in 2004. Leeland is composed of Leeland Mooring (lead vocals, guitar), Jack Mooring (backing vocals, keyboard), Matt Campbell (guitar), Jake Holtz (bass) and Mike Smith (drums).
Tears of the Saints-Lyrics
There are many prodigal sons
On our city streets they run
Searching for shelter
There are homes broken down
People's hopes have fallen to the ground
This is an emergency!
There are tears from the saints
For the lost and unsaved
We're crying for them come back home
We're crying for them come back home
And all your children will stretch out their hands
And pick up the crippled man
Father, we will lead them home
Father, we will lead them home
There are schools full of hatred
Even churches have forsaken
Love and mercy
May we see this generation
In it's state of desperation
For Your glory
This is an emergency!
Sinner, reach out your hands!
Children in Christ you stand!
Sinner, reach out your hands!
Children in Christ you stand!
And all Your children will stretch out their hands
And pick up the crippled man
Father, we will lead them home
Father, we will lead them home
Tuesday, December 14, 2010
Application brings Our Lady of Medjugorje messages to iPhone users-Croatian Times
Osijek programmers have developed an iPhone application that will allow the users to receive Our Lady of Medjugorje’s messages directly on their mobile devices.
In cooperation with their American partner Surgeworks, programmers from Osijek’s Inchoo d.o.o have made Lady of Medjugorje’s messages available to well-connected believers everywhere. In addition to reading them, the mobile device users will be able to forward the messages to friends or share them on Facebook.
Our Lady of Medjugorje is the name given to Virgin Mary who has said to have appeared to six Croat children in June 24, 1981 in Medjugorje (Bosnia and Herzegovina).
Ivan Kalaica, the leader of the Osijek part of the team, says that the
development of the application continues the company’s Christian-themed specialization.
The "Medjugorje" application is one in the series which include "Divine Office" and "Prayer. The first performs daily downloads of services and enables users to see how many people are participating in prayer around the world at the same time, while the latter is a multilingual archive of more than 1,500 Christian prayers. According to Kalaica, "Prayer" is one of the 50 most sold applications in the Reference category both on Apple and iTunes online stores in the United States, Kalaica said.
The "Medjugorje" application is currently available in English and Italian, while a Croatian version is on its way, the daily Jutarnji List writes.
Source of Entire Article Above:Croatian Times ©
Monday, December 13, 2010
But sun, sand and silly souvenirs are not high on the list of priorities for these holiday makers, rather they are searching for spiritual enlightenment; for a vision of the Blessed Virgin Mary; and for cures for everything from addiction and loneliness to cancer. Pilgrims looks into these issues of faith and spirituality as it follows a group of pilgrims from Northern Ireland as they make their way to the world-renowned shrine in the small town of Medjugorje.
Sunday, December 12, 2010
He heard about Medjugorje in the very beginning, he thinks it might have been already in 1981. “Medjugorje is the world centre, place of prayer and peace”, says Bishop Hilarius and adds, “People are coming here because Our Lady is really appearing here, this is the place of renewal, conversion, new beginning. Medjugorje attracts many people; I can see personal relationship, this is all work of God, something that he does through His Blessed Mother and visionaries, I really like everything I see here. God is always at work, whether we see that or not, God’s message needs to be announced all over the place”, said Bishop Hilarius at the end, who will stay in Medjugorje for three days.[date: 17.09.2010]
(Source: © Medjugorje (http://medjugorje.hr)
He endeavoured to compare the current crisis with that of 1987. In this he is gravely mistaken. In 1987 Ireland had a fully functioning banking sector. Today we have a budget deficit problem and a banking crisis. In addition the cost of the banking crisis has been foisted on the taxpayer. The IMF/EU is calling the shots. The new government of whatever hue must renegotiate the IMF/EU deal. The conditions are much too severe.
Lower interest rates on the loans and a longer term to repay the loans will ensure that there is no default.
Feargal Quinn criticised ther number of teachers in the Dail. Here he has a point. However neither the Taoiseach, Minister for Finance, Minister for Justice or Minister for Social Welfare are teachers. Neither for that matter were Bertie Ahern or Charlie McCreevy. There are very few teachers on the FG front bench.
Thursday, December 9, 2010
Our Lady's Message to Mirjana at Medjugorje on December 2, 2010
“Dear children; Today I am praying here with you that you may gather the strength to open your hearts and thus to become aware of the mighty love of the suffering God. Through this His love, goodness and meekness, I am also with you. I invite you for this special time of preparation to be a time of prayer, penance and conversion. My children, you need God. You cannot go forward without my Son. When you comprehend and accept this, what was promised to you will be realized. Through the Holy Spirit the Kingdom of Heaven will be born in your hearts. I am leading you to this. Thank you. ”
Tuesday, December 7, 2010
Mirjana said that the pilgrimage to Medjugorje is a must for those seeking faith, in order to look inside and look for hope. Even Protestants are visiting Medjugorje Mirjana said. She said that they had also seen people from Hollywood too, kneeling on the stones, even with tears in their eyes.
Mirjana recounted the early days of the apparitions during the rule of the Communist regime.
Mirjana said "Our Lady does not speak of "non-believers" but speaks of "those who have not yet found the love of God." They are his children, Our Lady's eyes are filled with tears at the thought of what awaits them. From the lack of faith there are many evils, warned Mirjana: Wars, suicide, abortion, separation. However we need to pray. When you lose respect for the priests, it is lost for the Church, and with time, for His Son. She said that we need to pray for priests." Mirjana stressed that abortion was hated by Catholics as an absolute moral evil.
Marija stated that "Our Lady calls us all to holiness". She said that the earthly life is like a flower. Now here but gone tomorrow. We may reach up to a hundred years of age, but if we do not believe in the eternal, everything is in vain. Marija spoke about the culture of death. She said we are creating a worse world. Because of abortion many say no to life. Find me a politician who is pro-life and against abortion. Lets have the law of God. She spoke about the evil of euthanasia. She said that even in our culture we have Hitler.
She said "In Medjugorje, the revolution has begun, not for the communists, but for God.
Sunday, December 5, 2010
Source:MEDJUGORJE: FOTO PARTICOLARI
There is no safety in these numbers
....The first path requires abandoning the memorandum on the State's bank guarantee, signed with the troika, that commits the Irish State to ensure the continuation of bond repayments to Irish bank bondholders. This step is easy to take.Read the full article at Sunday Independent
Within the ECB/EU/IMF team, it was the EU that insisted on underwriting bank bondholders, against the advice of the IMF. Even a simple glance at the numbers above would imply that should the EU continue to adhere to the same position, by 2012-2013 it will have to deal with the worst possible scenario -- an insolvent member state with insolvent banking and household sectors. The fallout from this for the EU would be far worse than some €60-90bn in the debt writedowns required to repair the Irish economy.
The next step -- after shredding the Irish Government commitment to the bank bondholders -- will be to rebuild the banking sector through a structured recapitalisation of the Bank of Ireland and AIB, by a combination of debt-for-equity swap -- setting current bondholders to equity holders in the banks -- the state purchase of shares in the banks at a heavily discounted price, and a restructuring of Irish bank debts to the ECB. Alongside these financial measures, the banks must be cleansed of their top management and reformed in areas of their long-term strategy and operations.
The state guarantee must remain only for the depositors and even this should be limited, after the reforms take place, to deposits under €200,000. A voluntary insurance scheme should be set up for all deposits in excess of that amount. It can be underwritten, in part, by the State in exchange for premium payments out of deposits. Anyone suggesting that a debt-for-equity swap would result in the Irish banking system collapsing altogether should go back to May this year, when the Bank of Ireland carried an €852m conversion of subordinated debt for equity, netting a capital gain of €233m in the process.
Restructuring bank debt today is the only alternative to a disorderly default in a few years' time. The latter outcome would imply -- following Argentina's and other recent scenarios -- a total stop to all functional banking operations in the country and a full restructuring of the sovereign and bank debts, carried out while the markets panic.....
Friday, December 3, 2010
Deputy Kenny said Fine Gael aims to create 100,000 new jobs, achieve the 3% deficit target and the €15 billion worth of adjustments within the original four year timeframe. Job creation and fairness will be the over-riding principle, within the financial constraints.
The plan will be built around three pillars:
1. Limiting tax increases to one-quarter of the adjustment next year, and one-third of the adjustment over four years;
2. Radical public sector reform to end waste, inefficiency and duplication, starting with the political system;
3. And a jobs and stimulus plan.
Deputy Kenny said: ‘There is a better way, and a fairer way, than anything offered by the current failed Government. Fine Gael will make jobs and economic growth a precondition, not an aspiration’.
“International experience shows clearly that cuts in spending are more effective at fixing deficits and are better for growth and jobs than tax increases. Confronting waste, inefficiency, duplication and redundancy in public spending should be the focus of Ireland’s budgetary adjustment.”
Tackling the Deficit
Key proposals to tackle the deficit include:
• Protecting pensions, including contributory and non-contributory old age pensions, those for widows, the blind, people with disabilities, and carers’ allowances, while collecting some extra tax from those with generous occupational pensions;
• No income tax increases in 2011 before recovery takes hold, and limiting income tax increases to half the levels proposed by Fianna Fáil over the entire four years;
• A much greater emphasis on closing tax loopholes for the rich, including suspending property-based tax reliefs and tightening the rules for tax exiles;
• A fairer approach to Fianna Fáil's proposed annual recurring property tax on the family home;
• Cutting tax relief on schemes offering pensions greater than €60,000, while protecting pensions tax relief for middle income families;
• 18,000 more voluntary redundancies in the public sector than the Government proposes;
• Targeting the €3 billion worth of annual social welfare fraud through the establishment of a single Payments and Entitlements system.
Fine Gael recognises the need to raise more revenues from property. But a residential property tax would unfairly hit the young generation already burned by the housing bubble. So we will increase the second home tax, cut Capital Acquisitions Tax thresholds and introduce a low Capital Gains Tax on the site values of primary residences. Alongside this, we will cut stamp duty for families trading up and down, and provide greater relief for working families in mortgage distress.
Supporting jobs and growth
Deputy Noonan said: ‘We will strengthen significantly the reforms needed to cut business costs, to improve productivity, and to incentivise and facilitate people to acquire the skills needed to re-enter the workplace’:
• Replacing the minimum wage cut proposed by Government with a cut in the jobs' tax to encourage people off welfare and into work;
• Accelerating capital allowances on business software investments to support a local high-tech industry;
• A €10 million one-off marketing budget for State agencies to restore Ireland's battered business reputation across the globe;
• No change in either the standard or top rates of income tax, or the 12.5% rate of corporation tax;
• Abolish the travel tax subject to deals on re-opening routes with Ryanair and Aer Lingus;
• Abolish the lower 8.5% rate of employers’ PRSI on staff earning below €356 per week for at least three years to reduce employment costs;
• A 1.5% cut in the lower 13.5% VAT rate to re-direct consumer spending away from imports, and into labour-intensive services such as trades, restaurants, hotels and newspapers;
• Increase DIRT to 30% to encourage higher levels of household consumption;
• A pre-announcement that home insulation and other residential and commercial energy saving subsidies will terminate in 2013, leading to a bringing forward of demand in the intervening two years.
Deputy Noonan added: ‘Fine Gael’s job stimulus plan, NewERA, will use streamlined and restructured semi-State companies to invest an additional €6-7 billion, over and above current plans, in investments in “next generation” energy, broadband, forestry and water infrastructure. In discussions with the IMF, Fine Gael has confirmed that funds from the National Pension Reserve Fund and proceeds from the sale of State assets remain available, under conditions to be agreed, to finance the NewERA stimulus plan.
Achieving greater public sector savings and reform
Deputy Kenny said: ‘The split between spending reductions and tax increases in the Government’s four year plan moves in the right direction but there is room for additional spending savings from public sector pay of at least €900 million by 2014. This will make room for targeted initiatives to support employment and economic activity’:
• Cutting the number of national politicians by 35%;
• Cutting the threshold for application of minimum 30% effective tax rate to €250,000 from €400,000 at present (with marginal relief from €125,000);
• Reducing the size of the public sector by 10% - just over 30,000;
• Reducing the size of the core civil service working in Government Departments by a third through the establishment of shared service operations;
• Implementing at least half of the McCarthy report recommendations, and 80% of the savings recommended by the Local Government Efficiency Review;
• Close FÁS and the HSE and abolish 145 quangos.
Deputy Noonan concluded by saying: ‘Extending the period of the adjustment will only force Ireland to borrow more money and pay more back in interest, so we will aim to reach the targets within four years’.
Perspectives on Budget 2011 and the 4-Year Plan is available at:
The spending spreadsheet is available at:
Wednesday, December 1, 2010
Marias talk in Medjugorje August 2009 Part 1
Marias talk in Medjugorje August 2009 Part 2
Marias talk in Medjugorje August 2009 Part 3
Marias talk in Medjugorje August 2009 Part 4
Marias talk in Medjugorje August 2009 Part 5
After a number of obscene roles in movies, Claudia walked through the Holy door on Basilica of St. Peter in Rome, in Jubilee Year of 2000 and instantly felt that the life she had up to that moment was broken and disappeared. And then, she said: “One day there was this dramatic situation that needed to be resolved and I did not know how to handle that at all. I remember being desperate, I walked the room up and down, and just simply in one moment I started to speak to God. I prayed Our Father and I was squeezing in the palms of my hands a little crucifix that one of my friends gave to me few days prior to that. In those moments, my whole being was turned towards the God, I felt as I was tied close to the Cross and I was able to feel complete liberation. I felt as I was immersed in something like a deep peace. And I rested in that feeling. No longer was I worried, nor afraid; it felt as there was only one feeling of deep silence, something unknown to me prior to that particular moment. It was that silence that spoke to me about God, I did not see Him, but I was able to feel Him. I asked Him, ´Why did You do that, why did you console me, I do not deserve that?’ Then I said: ‘You are my Father, I prayed to you in the prayer of Our Father and I told You that I would like to meet You!’ That was my prayer!”
“Lord did not take away my suffering, but He walked with me, slowly, and helped me to resolve that pain. Even more, that suffering was my journey towards Him, I started to feel desire to go back to the church. In the beginning I would just spend time in a church and enjoy silence and peace of God and that had brought me to the sacrament of Holy Eucharist. God started to heal me through the sacraments. It was a long process, with its ups and downs, but every time I would fall down, I would be getting up again.” She realised that she needs to follow Jesus and it needs to be on both of her feet, one of love and the other of truth. She would turn down all of the movie roles that were not in accordance with the spirit of Gospel. She told us interesting detail from those days: “One day I signed the contract that offered me lots of money. The role itself was not negative but I knew I shouldn’t have had signed that contract, since I was to meet those same people that I had promised to the Lord I would not meet ever again. The second I signed the contract I knew I made mistake. I was not able to say no, because I was still weak in my decisions. But, when I got the money for that project, I started to give it to the poor people in the church. I felt that money did not belong to me, it was the money of betrayal.”
The following chapter of her life was how she went to do mission work, in Ethiopia where she had witnessed so much poverty, famine, little children dying all over the place. She said: “I remember one little boy whose eyes were closed not because he was blind but because he did not have any water to wash his eyes. His eyes were inflamed because of all of the dirt that was in his eyes. I used moisture tissues to clean and wash out his eyes and while his eyes were being opened, the Lord was opening mine. I realised I lived in a luxurious home, I had expensive carpets, silver cutlery and none of that was able to save my life. I started to see everything in a different way and I realised I needed to give part of my wealth to those who were poor. “
After she came back, she visited the shrine of Divine Mercy and she was able to discover the message of Divine Mercy. “I realised that the Lord was saying to me ‘Claudia, if you fell down, that was because you trusted too much in your own abilities, trust me!’ For me, that was what ‘Jesus, I trust in you’ meant. I needed to realise that my conversion was going to happen together with Jesus and I should have trusted in my Lord more, from the beginning. I think that genuine faith is the one Abraham had, he hoped and believed beyond and against every hope and belief”, says Claudia.
Claudia also spoke about her relationship and devotion towards Our Lady. “Our Lady was always present in my life, ever since I was born. I remember watching a movie about Our Lady from Fatima, it was when I was 8, 10 years old, I do not remember exactly. And I remember saying how Our Lady was not just a statue, she was a woman. I was really impressed that Our Lady gave such important tasks to the visionaries. I remember, as I was going back home after seeing that movie, I was reciting a little prayer in my heart to Our Lady and I told her ‘I want to live with you and come to you, bring me closer to You as You brought Jacinta.’ I was asking from Our Lady to die, and Lord did not answer that prayer, but I think He wants me now to witness for Him, and all of the experiences I had are just evident proofs of Divine Mercy. “
Claudia mentioned how Our Lady was with her all along her conversion, and she feels strongly about Medjugorje and apparitions to the visionaries. In the moments of apparitions, she feels powerful presence of Our Lady. Describing one such event she said: “I could see that it was raining, but I did not feel rain drops on my umbrella at all. I think it is such a wonderful experience to feel Our Lady with heart. It never occurred to me to look for the signs, to look in the sky. I think that this encounter takes place in the depths of our hearts. I do not even want to look into the face of the visionary, I am only interested in my own prayer and encounter with Our Lady. “
Claudia emphasises especially the love she feels now through Our Lady’s presence. The love in a completely new way. The journey to that new experience had several stages. This is just one of them. “When my conversion began, first people that Lord would place in front of me were those who had AIDS. And it was through one of such young man, through his suffering that I got to know Christ’s love. I started to think about Jesus in a Garden of Gethsemane, and his sweat of blood, how he must have feared death. On the other hand, this young man was lying in a bed and he was in a very bad state. He was unable to speak because illness affected speech centre in his brain. But his eyes spoke about his fears. And when I took his hand, I felt great love in my heart. The love I never felt before, strong and gentle. It was that love that converted me. When I look into my past now, I think about how many times Jesus entered such areas of my life. But my eyes were blind, closed and I was not able to recognise Him. When my conversion started, I realised that Jesus was present in all those who were suffering.”
Claudia Koll is the founder of Association “The Works of the Father” that is dedicated to missionary work in Africa. She is building a house for disabled people called Little Lourdes. In the world of Arts, she is the Head of the Academy of Arts that was founded on the principles from the Letter to the Artists of late Holy Father John Paul II. Through this Academy, she wants to help young people to enter into the world of fame and spectacle in a healthy, Christian way. It is interesting that music from Medjugorje regularly plays inside this Academy.
Source: © Information Centre Mir Medjugorje
Tuesday, November 30, 2010
You who faithfully visit and fulfill with your Presence
the Church and the history of men;
You who in the miraculous Sacrament of your Body and Blood
render us participants in divine Life
and allow us a foretaste of the joy of eternal Life;
We adore and bless you.
Prostrated before You, source and lover of Life,
truly present and alive among us, we beg you.
Reawaken in us respect for every unborn life,
make us capable of seeing in the fruit of the maternal womb
the miraculous work of the Creator,
open our hearts to generously welcoming every child
that comes into life.
Bless all families,
sanctify the union of spouses,
render fruitful their love.
Accompany the choices of legislative assemblies
with the light of your Spirit,
so that peoples and nations may recognize and respect
the sacred nature of life, of every human life.
Guide the work of scientists and doctors,
so that all progress contributes to the integral well-being of the person,
and no one endures suppression or injustice.
Give creative charity to administrators and economists,
so they may realize and promote sufficient conditions
so that young families can serenely embrace
the birth of new children.
Console the married couples who suffer
because they are unable to have children
and in Your goodness provide for them.
Teach us all to care for orphaned or abandoned children,
so they may experience the warmth of your Charity,
the consolation of your divine Heart.
Together with Mary, Your Mother, the great believer,
in whose womb you took on our human nature,
we wait to receive from You, our Only True Good and Savior,
the strength to love and serve life,
in anticipation of living forever in You,
in communion with the Blessed Trinity.
Monday, November 29, 2010
Perhaps he should consider why Our Lady chose Medjugorje:
Why did Our Lady choose Medjugorje?Our Lady gave a message on June 26, 1981, stating:
“I have come because there are many true believers here. I wish to be with you to convert and to reconcile the whole world.”
Our Lady also gave a message on March 21, 1985:
“…I love you and in a special way I have chosen this parish, one more dear to me than the others, in which I have gladly remained when the Almighty sent me…”
Sunday, November 28, 2010
Thursday, November 25, 2010
How would this work in practice in relation to an individual Irish bank ? Lets call the bank the Irish Ranchers Bank. Suppose that it owed bondholders €50 billion
A 25% haircut would reduce this debt by €12.5 billion. This would lead to the creation of €12.5 billion in equity. Thus the bank would be significantly recapitalised.
However for this to work it is a sine qua non that the Irish government pass a law (urgently) which compulsorily converts the existing creditors of the banks into shareholders thereby liberating the Irish taxpayer. As of now Ireland has no such law. Such a bank resolution law would protect depositors with an ECB-backed deposit insurance scheme.
Recalcitrant creditors tempted to overthrow the new arrangements would undoubtedly resort to legal action. On balance it is likely that they would lose out in the Irish courts.
The IMF’s involvement here means that Ireland will not return to the bond markets for three years. We NOW have a window of opportunity to resolve the banking crisis. NOW is the time for the government to take the bull by the horns and adopt this approach. It may not make us too popular in some quarters. Politicians are generally thick skinned and can wear this unpopularity. The alternative is too horrible to contemplate.
Wednesday, November 24, 2010
National Recovery Plan 2011 - 2014
The National Recovery Plan 2011 - 2014 documents (published on the 24th of November 2010) are available below.
- National Recovery Plan 2011 - 2014 (PDF)
- National Recovery Plan Summary Leaflet (PDF)
- An Plean Téarnaimh Náisiúnta (PDF)
Monday, November 22, 2010
The behaviour of the Greens is inexplicable. They must have known that a political crisis would ensue once an announcement was made to withdraw from government(even if that withdrawal is not until January 2011). The Green Party could have kept its powder dry until a budget was passed. Then it could have announced its intention to withdraw. Now everything is thrown up in the air. There is a strong likelihood that the budget will not pass as the two independents- not to be outdone by the Greens- have cynically withdrawn their support from the government.
The two Independent TDs Jackie Healy-Rae and Michael Lowry have withdrawn their support from the FF/Green government. Mr Lowry said that it was highly unlikely that he would support the government's budget proposals unless FG and Labour were given an input into the formulation of the budget and supported it. Mr Healy-Rae said that it was very unlikely that he would support the budget.
These two Independent TDs have used their political leverage to secure concessions for their constituencies. Now that the well has run dry they seek to put the onus on the opposition to support the government. This is hypocrisy of the highest order.
Lowry cynically speaks about "the duty and responsibility and obligation of FG and Labour to support the budget", conveniently ignoring his own obligations. No wonder the Irish electorate is disillusioned.
Jackie Healy-Rae and Michael Lowry give the government a majority of 83-79 when they vote in its favour however Sinn Fein may win the Donegal SW by-election on Thursday next. In that event the government would most likely fall on the budget. However that is not the end of the story. Healy Rae has left some wriggle room and could yet vote for the budget. He is demanding fairness in the budget. This just adds to the uncertainty. On balance I believe Healy Rae will support the budget. After all he comes from the FF gene pool. He has stated that he would have to see what was in the budget before deciding to support it.
Today we have witnessed political clown acting of the highest order on the part of the Greens and the two Independents. Clowns are figures of fun but certainly should not be elected to the Dail.
Healy-Rae's remit never seems to extend outside the South Kerry constituency. Almost every sentence uttered by him includes the words South Kerry.
The country is on its last legs with negotiations ongoing on the EU/IMF rescue package. Yet the Greens, Lowry and Healy Rae appear determined to play political games. Shame on them.
Sunday, November 21, 2010
It requires Real Player. A free version may be downloaded here
21 November 2010 - ECB Governing Council welcomes the request of the Irish Government for financial assistance
The European Union and euro-area financial support, together with the IMF financing, will be provided under strong policy conditionality, on the basis of a programme negotiated with the Irish authorities by the Commission and the IMF, in liaison with the ECB.
We are confident that this programme will contribute to ensuring the stability of the Irish banking system and permit it to perform its role in the functioning of the economy.
European Central Bank
Press and Information Division
Kaiserstrasse 29, D-60311 Frankfurt am Main
Tel.: +49 69 1344 7455, Fax: +49 69 1344 7404
Reproduction is permitted provided that the source is acknowledged.
The Osborne Baronetcy, of Ballentaylor in Tipperary, and Ballylemon County Waterford , was created in the Baronetage of Ireland on 15 October 1629 for Richard Osborne. He was M.P. for Co Waterford between 1639 and 1649. He was also M.P. for Co. Waterford between 1661 and 1666.
Sir Richard Osborne, second baronet held the office of M.P. for Dungarvan between 1639 and 1649. He held the office of High Sheriff of Co. Waterford in 1671.
Sir John Osborne, 7th Baronet sat as an MP in the Irish House of Commons for Lismore between 1719 and 1727 and for County Waterford between 1727 and 1743.
The eight baronet Sir William Osborne held the office of High Sheriff of County Waterford in 1750. He held the office of M.P. for Carysfort between 1761 and 1768. He was M.P for Dungarvan between 1768 and 1783. He was invested as a Privy Counsellor in 1770. He held the office of M.P. for Carysfort in 1783.
Sir Thomas Osborne the ninth Baronet sat for Carysfort and also held the office of Sheriff of Waterford .
Sir Henry Osborne, 11th Baronet was MP to the Irish House of Commons for Carysfort in 1798 and for Enniskillen, County Fermanagh, in 1800.
Friday, November 19, 2010
"Independent councillor John Halligan declared his nomination to contest the Waterford constituency at the earliest opportunity. Whether it is the by-election which is pending or a general election.."
Ex Workers Party member Clr Halligan targets FG unfairlyHis comments in relation to the FG party can be taken with a grain of salt.
He states "that in spite of all the promises about public radiotherapy by both the major parties Fianna Fail and Fine Gael it has not materialised."
His criticism of FG is nonsensical as FG has not been in power since 1997 (13 years ago). This is a fine example of silly politicking on Halligans part.
Would Halligan care to explain how FG could have provided radiotherapy for Waterford?
In relation to FG he is also quoted as follows:
"They had also just announced that they would cut 30,000 public service jobs which would devastate communities. He reminded the audience they were talking about gardai, nurses, care workers, and teachers."
This is more poppycock from the ex Workers Party member. The Workers Party is a far left political party.
Once more he MISREPRESENTS the FG position. The redundancies are to be achieved voluntarily and by natural wastage. NO COMPULSORY REDUNDANCIES are involved. The redundancies are targeted at administrative positions in the public service. Gardai, nurses, care workers, and teachers are SPECIFICALLY EXCLUDED.
Halligan is all things to all men with plenty of populist sound bytes. He is a typical parish pump politician. He has provided no explanation as to how his plans could be funded. Does he support the far left approach of a massive nationalisation of the means of production a la North Korea.
All and all this is a very poor start by John Halligan. Halligan needs to realise that the the neo-Marxist analysis has long been discredited. Extreme left wing policies offer equality of poverty. This is something for John Halligan to contemplate.
Tuesday, November 16, 2010
challenges it faces in the budgetary, competitiveness and financial sector areas.
The Eurogroup welcomes in particular the announcement by the Irish authorities that their four-year budgetary strategy will be frontloaded by € 6 billion in 2011 on a total consolidation effort of € 15 billion.
We have full confidence that the four-year strategy to be announced by the end of the month will be thorough and detailed and will firmly anchor the 2014 target date for the correction of the excessive deficit. This strategy will also ensure that the public debt ratio will be put on a firm downward path.
Together with the structural reforms that will be announced in the strategy, this budgetary adjustment should allow Ireland to return to a strong and sustainable growth path while safeguarding the economic and social position of its citizens. We nevertheless invite the Irish authorities to include an annual review in their strategy that will allow them to cope with the implications of less favourable macro-economic developments were they to arise.
We welcome the measures taken to date by Ireland to deal with issues in its
banking sector, via guarantees, recapitalisation and asset segregation. These measures have helped to support the Irish banking sector at a time of great dislocation. However, market conditions have not normalised and pressures remain, giving rise to concerns that further reforms and stabilisation measures may be appropriate.
We welcome the determination of the Irish government to engage in a short and focussed consultation with the Commission, the ECB and the IMF in order to determine the best way to provide any necessary support to address market risks, especially as regard the banking sector, in the context of the four-year budgetary plan and the upcoming budget.
We confirm that we will take determined and coordinated action to safeguard
the financial stability of the euro area, if needed, and that we have the means available to do so.
Monday, November 15, 2010
My Silent Plea (Pro Life Poem)Today I had nightmare,
It was scary as can be.
From inside my mothers womb
I was taken so violently.
No longer would I live and feel Gods life in me.
I knew it was a nightmare.
That was not Gods plan for me.
He wove me in your womb.
So I may be a blessing to all humanity.
I feel, I touch, I am alive.
Mammy tell me it cant be.
Today I had a nighmare.
I would be taken from thee.
Let me stay another day.
Let me grow to be me.
God so loved me.
He gave me life.
Please don’t take my life from me
Photograph of Ireland at Night taken by Douglas H. Wheelock NASA Astronaut, STS-120, Expedition 24/25
Sunday, November 14, 2010
US: Former Chief Economist of the IMF Claims that the finance industry has effectively captured the government
Here is an excerpt from the article titled the Quiet Coup written by Simon Johnson:
The Quiet Coup
One thing you learn rather quickly when working at the International Monetary Fund is that no one is ever very happy to see you. Typically, your “clients” come in only after private capital has abandoned them, after regional trading-bloc partners have been unable to throw a strong enough lifeline, after last-ditch attempts to borrow from powerful friends like China or the European Union have fallen through. You’re never at the top of anyone’s dance card.
The reason, of course, is that the IMF specializes in telling its clients what they don’t want to hear. I should know; I pressed painful changes on many foreign officials during my time there as chief economist in 2007 and 2008. And I felt the effects of IMF pressure, at least indirectly, when I worked with governments in Eastern Europe as they struggled after 1989, and with the private sector in Asia and Latin America during the crises of the late 1990s and early 2000s. Over that time, from every vantage point, I saw firsthand the steady flow of officials—from Ukraine, Russia, Thailand, Indonesia, South Korea, and elsewhere—trudging to the fund when circumstances were dire and all else had failed.Read ahead at the Atlantic
All alone I didn't like the feeling
All alone I sat and cried
All alone I had to find some meaning
In the center of the pain I felt inside
All alone I came into this world
All alone I will someday die
Solid stone is just sand and water, baby
Sand and water, and a million years gone by
I will see you in the light of a thousand suns
I will hear you in the sound of the waves
I will know you when I come, as we all will come
Through the doors beyond the grave
All alone I heal this heart of sorrow
All alone I raise this child
Flesh and bone, he's just
Bursting towards tomorrow
And his laughter fills my world and wears your smile
I will see you in the light of a thousand suns
I will hear you in the sound of the waves
I will know you when I come, as we all will come
Through the doors beyond the grave
All alone I came into this world
All alone I will someday die
Solid stone is just sand and water, baby
Sand and water and a million years gone by
Saturday, November 13, 2010
Full story here
Thursday, November 11, 2010
Though still erupting and dangerous on November 10, the eruption was quieter than it had been the previous week. The ash plume caused flight cancellations in both Jakarta and Yogyakarta, reported CNN. As of November 10, the eruption had killed at least 156 and displaced about 200,000.
(Image and Text-NASA)
Tuesday, November 9, 2010
The Government of FF and the Greens together with Ireland's main opposition party FG are in agreement with the EU on the TARGET of a €6 billion adjustment in the upcoming budget-on November 7- comprised of tax increases and public expenditure cuts. On Bloomberg this morning it was further stated that Ireland was going bankrupt. Whilst Ireland has very serious economic problems this is somewhat of an exaggeration.
The big bang approach of a major sharp budget adjustment carries risks but on balance it is probably the correct approach. However it must be accompanied by an economic stimulus package as advocated by FG.
If consumers feel that most of the heavy lifting is out of the way confidence will return.
One of the major problems is that consumers are afraid to spend.
In the interests of fairness Bloomberg needs to correct the mistaken impression conveyed this morning. It should first ascertain the facts from the NTMA before disseminating half-baked economic data in relation to Ireland.
Monday, November 8, 2010
Sunday, November 7, 2010
One hundred ideas to protect Front Line Services
“Among the actions set out in Reinventing Government to make Fine Gael’s vision of Government a reality are:Full Document Here
· The abolishing of over 145 state bodies and companies including the dismantling of the HSE and FAS and their replacement with better, more cost effective alternatives;
· Saving over €5billion, or 1 euro in 10 spent by public bodies, by confronting waste, duplication and inefficiency;
· Externally recruiting new high level specialists in banking, taxation and macro economic forecasting to improve the Dept. of Finance’s capacity to deliver on key tasks;
· At least 1/3rd of all appointments at a senior level in the Public Service (above PO level) will be made from outside the current system for a period of 5 years;
· All lobbyists will have to be registered with the Standard’s in Public Office Commission and recent restrictions to the Freedom of Information Act will be reversed.
· We will establish an Independent Fiscal Council to advise Parliament on issues such as borrowing levels, debt reduction and taxation planning. The Fiscal Council will be accountable to the Oireachtas Finance Committee.
“Unless there is a fundamental change in the way Government does its business, it will continue to be part of the problem rather than the solution. We need a Public Service that is smaller, better and one that gets things done. Through the systems and plans outlined in “Reinventing Government”, Fine Gael will make that happen.”
Saturday, November 6, 2010
Wednesday, November 3, 2010
Tuesday, November 2, 2010
By Deal W. HudsonContinue reading at Catholic Advocate
The polling results released by the New York Times last week do not come as a surprise to anyone familiar with the recent history of the Catholic vote.
The NYTs poll found that the percentage of self-identified Catholics favoring GOP candidates has risen 34% since the 2008 election.
In fact, Catholic voters moved the most toward the GOP among all the groups being polled, including women, college graduates, independents, West region, 30-44 year olds, suburbanites, and families with under a $50,000 income.
Catholics are a powerful swing vote in American politics, but that dynamism is easily misunderstood.
Between 1999 and 2004, as Chair of Catholic Outreach at the RNC, I led an effort that successfully helped to move 15% of self-identified Catholic voters from supporting the Democratic presidential candidate to voting for the Republican, in this case, George W. Bush. (In 1996, Dole won 37% of Catholics compared to 52% of Catholics who voted for Bush in 2004.)....
Sunday, October 31, 2010
Yesterday, Lisa Murkowski’s hired guns threatened radio host Dan Fagan, and more importantly, the station that airs Fagan’s show, with legal action for allegedly illegal “electioneering.” The station, unlike Murkowski, who is flush with millions of dollars from vested corporate interests, does not have a budget for a legal defense. So it did what any small market station would do when threatened by Beltway lawyers charging $500 to $1000 an hour – they pulled Dan Fagan off the air.Continue reading at Facebook
Does all this sound heavy handed? It is. It is an interference with Dan Fagan’s constitutional right to free speech. It is also a shocking indictment against Lisa Murkowski. How low will she go to hold onto power? First, she gets the Division of Elections to change its write-in process – a process that Judge Pfiffner correctly determined had been in place without change for 50 years. She is accepting financial support from federal contractors, an act that is highly questionable and now pending before the FEC. And today, she played her last card. She made it clear that if you disagree with her and encourage others to exercise their civic rights, she’ll take you off the air.
Friday, October 29, 2010
Thursday, October 28, 2010
Monday, October 25, 2010
Lara Marlow strongly criticised Christina O’Donnell, Sharron Angle and Joe Miller. Her criticism of O’Donnell was savage. She was careful to mention that O'Donnell's Democrat opponent Chris Coons (also known as the Bearded Marxist) was educated at Yale. But Marlowe omitted to mention Coon's record in Delaware. He introduced a 54% property tax and a 64% sewer tax increase.
Now I wonder who the real extremist is.
One would have expected some effort at balance from G.Hook.It was singularly lacking. He made no effort to defend O’Donnell. No effort was made to stress that candidates such as O’Donnell, Angle and Miller are fiscal conservatives determined to see a balanced budget and stringent controls on government spending. They were just painted as extremists.
Now of course O’Donnell and Angle are pro-life women. Democrats and their friends in the liberal media detest O’Donnell and Angle because they are anti-abortion. No reference to this was made by either Marlow or Hook.
It was particularly interesting to note that Lara Marlowe failed to discuss the ugly personal attacks on Christina O’Donnell and Sharron Angle by Democrats and their friends in the media.
Lets look at ONE particular attack on O’Donnell:
Christine O'Donnell called a Whore in Scurrilous Attack by Behar Guest Judge Karen Mills-FrancisVia FoxNation
On Wednesday’s Joy Behar Show on HLN, when a panel discussion turned to the subject of Delaware Republican Senate nominee Christine O’Donnell, panel member Judge Karen Mills-Francis of the Judge Karen’s Court show described O’Donnell as having been a "whore" as she listed some of the Senate candidate's past and recent problems.
Mills-Francis: "She’s a real train wreck, and the reason why she said that is, I mean, have you looked at this woman’s resume? She was a whore by her own admission. She was an alcoholic. She owed her college $5,000 for 10 years – they had to sue her. The IRS levied an $11,000 tax lien against her. I mean, do I need to go on?"
Apparently impressed by her rant, host Behar responded, "Keep going."
View video of comments here The segment of the programme concerning Christine O'Donnell commenced at 4.36 on the video.The scurrilous comment was made at 5.10 on the video.
Finally is it too much to ask George Hook to give the GOP side of the argument in future? Sadly in Ireland most news comes from American Pro Democrat sources. Lara Marlowe might care to define what she means by moderate Republican?
I suspect moderate to her means pro-abortion and big spending.
Wednesday, October 20, 2010
In 2005, he received over 1000 votes (.03% of the total vote). In 2009, he received 2615 votes for his second campaign for Mayor.
During an appearance at a 2010 gubernatorial debate dominated by McMillan and the four other minor-party candidates , he stated his views on gay marriage, by saying "The Rent Is Too Damn High Party believes that if you want to marry a shoe, I'll marry you."
Regarding his use of black gloves during the debate, "I’m a war vet," McMillan said. "Don’t forget I was in Vietnam for two and half years and I have three Bronze Stars, but the chemicals of Agent Orange -- dioxin and a lot of other chemicals mixed up -- I would get sick. When I get home tonight, I know I’m not going to be able to breathe if I take them off. It could be psychological, I don’t know, but I just put em on and wear them anyway." Source (Wikipedia)
Sunday, October 17, 2010
Wednesday, October 13, 2010
Read more: Yes on Amendment 62: Protect innocent humans - The Denver Post
Tuesday, October 12, 2010
in the pro-life cause:
"When the time comes, as it surely will, when we face that
awesome moment, the final judgment, I've often thought,
as Fulton Sheen wrote, that it is a terrible moment of
loneliness. You have no advocates, you are there alone
standing before God -- and a terror will rip your soul
like nothing you can imagine. But I really think that those
in the pro-life movement will not be alone. I think there'll
be a chorus of voices that have never been heard in this
world but are heard beautifully and clearly in the next
world -- and they will plead for everyone who has been
in this movement. They will say to God, 'Spare him,
because he loved us!'"
Congressman Henry Hyde
Monday, October 11, 2010
When the Irish people give a new Government a new mandate, the natural energy, optimism and ideas of the Irish people will be unleashed. Set free. Liberated from the strangle hold of despair created by the current Government’s failings.
Fine Gael wants to seek that mandate, that permission from the people. We want to put the case of the Party I have the honour to lead to the people. Let me confirm to you tonight that Fine Gael has done the hard work and is now ready to lead the way in restoring our country’s fortunes. We have people who will lead. We have a team that will not lie down in the face of this challenge. And most crucially - we have the plans.
1. We will restore order and structure to the public finances
Never again will we allow bad politics and reckless banks destroy the economy. We will cut the budget deficit to 3% by 2014 and we recognise the need for a four year fiscal planning horizon. In that regard Michael Noonan will be meeting with Department of Finance officials on Wednesday as part of our own budgetary planning process.
But, let me be clear. We will achieve these budgetary targets not just through the usual spending and tax measures but by supporting economic growth and job creation. We know we cannot tax our way to economic recovery or health in the public finances. As a former Minister for Trade and Tourism I know at close quarters that a competitive tax regime is crucial for a small open economy like ours.
Even if others waiver on the issue, Fine Gael will not raise corporation tax. A successful Fine Gael Government introduced the current low rate and it has served our economy well over the years. Let me also confirm, that as Vice-President of the EPP in the European Parliament I have already made it clear to my colleagues the Treaty of Lisbon for which you all worked so hard makes tax matters sacrosanct to each individual country.
Finally, next week I travel to the US to meet Irish and US business interests to reinforce that message and to assist in the promotion of this country as one of the best locations in the world in which to do business.
2. We will make the protection and creation of jobs the first and last priority of a new Government
It seems to have escaped the notice of those in Government today that we will never fix our financial crisis if we don’t grow our economy and fix our jobs crisis.
We’ll get credit flowing by establishing a new small business loan guarantee scheme, as has been successfully introduced in many other countries – most notably Chile and Taiwan. Fine Gael will be launching a detailed policy document in this regard shortly and we will seek cross party support for this measure in the Dáil.
We’ll create over 100,000 jobs by putting in place an €18bn investment stimulus in the vital arteries of our economy – high speed broadband, clean energy, water - financed in part by selling off those state assets that we no longer need. This Fine Gael plan is called NewERA.
3. We’ll bring the Dutch health system – the best in Europe – to Ireland
Fine Gael’s health plan, FairCare, will eliminate hospital waiting lists - as they did in Northern Ireland – and put the patient front and centre by paying hospitals for what they actually do rather than for what they did last year. We’ll eliminate the unfair two-tier health system by making sure that health insurance is affordable for everyone. This will mean people will get access to care on the basis of need rather than wealth. This new approach is based on the world famous Dutch system of healthcare. It has worked there, it can work here too.
4. We will change politics and the public service
If the public is to take seriously political parties’ plans for rebuilding our country then, I believe, that political parties have to show that they are serious themselves about changing.
That is why within 12 months of forming a new Government Fine Gael will ask you to vote to abolish the Seanad and to reduce the Dáil by 20 TDs. We’ll make the Dáil smaller and more effective at holding Government to account in the public’s interest.
And let me state this clearly and without any ambiguity: A Fine Gael Government will operate in the people’s interests. It will not be the prisoner of big business, powerful unions or any other vested interest. Our only interest is the public’s interest.
We must make our political system more responsive and effective in tackling the wanton waste of public cash. I am determined that this scandalous waste of public monies is eliminated. We will also eliminate significant fraud in the welfare system and, finally, we will take on the white collar criminals with the same energy and determination that any threat to our society is pursued. The law of the land will apply, and must be seen to apply, to every section of our society. And if the law isn’t strong enough to do this we will strengthen it further.
Tonight, let us decide on one thing.
Let us look back on Black Thursday and recognise it not as an end but as a beginning. A day when the Irish people braced themselves for a fight, took a deep breath and said; never again.
I stand tonight with those true Irish patriots. I too say, never again. From this day forward let us stand together as a people and rebuild our country. Our banks, our public services, our economy and our politics all need a new start. It is a massive undertaking. The struggle will be long, our opponents many and the challenges diverse.
But the prize is worth fighting for.
A country to be proud of. One that protects its vulnerable. Rewards hard work and effort. Treats all with dignity and respect. Cherishes our young and invests for our shared future. And one that prizes community ahead of economy while recognising we need to nurture both. That is a country worth fighting for.