Today the myth of a popular, democratic government in Ireland collapsed for good. After an impromptu poll of 500 people nationwide found that a "substantial majority" of the people, or 57%, wants the State to default on debts to bondholder, what it ended up getting was precisely the opposite. Why? "Last night that the Irish delegation negotiating with the EU-IMF last week raised the issue of default. "The Europeans went completely mad," a senior government source said." Of course, this is a reason for the Europeans not to want an Irish default, not for the Irish. And last time we checked, the Irish government represented its people, not the interests of Brussels. As America showed all too well, we expect every banker in the world to threaten perpetual damnation for Ireland should they decide on doing what is right for its people (and so very wrong for another year of record banker bonuses). Then again, with elections in Ireland imminent, it is almost certain that there will be a massive popular overhaul of the government, and all bets at that point will be off whether the ECB can dictate terms to a brand new, and far more loyal, government. To quote to Independent: "In Dublin, there is barely concealed outrage at the interventions of Ms Merkel and at the position adopted recently by the European Central Bank, which precipitated the arrival of the EU-IMF team in Ireland."The ECB f**ked us," one government official in Dublin was reported yesterday to have said." We wonder how soon before rhetoric finally shifts to action.
More from the Independent:
Asked if they agreed with a proposed €1 reduction of the minimum wage, 66 per cent said no, while 34 per cent said yes. Asked if they supported a proposed cut to child benefit, 60 per cent said no and 40 per cent said yes.
A proposed increase in third-level fees was rejected by 65 per cent and approved by 35 per cent. Asked if they agreed with a proposed reduction in tax relief on private pensions, 59 per cent said no and 41 per cent said yes.
The public was more evenly divided on the issue of broadening the tax net. Asked if they agreed that everybody who earned over €15,300 a year should be included, 52 per cent said no, while 48 per cent said yes. The proposed €100 property tax was rejected by 55 per cent, with 45 per cent in favour.
At this point what happens in Ireland in the grand scheme of things doesn't matter. Tomorrow all eyes will be on Portuguese bond spreads, Tuesday Spain, and Wednesday on Belgium and Italy.