Agit prop floor show distracts from the substance of the Dail’s Nama debate…

Apparently Gerry Adams was in serene form in the ‘distinguished visitors gallery’ (H/T Suzy), whilst all on the floor of the Dail was mayhem during today’s Nama debate… eventually leading to Sinn Fein TD Arthur Morgan being bounced from the chamber ‘for being bold’… by An Ceann Comhairle… Miriam Lord clocked the (agit prop) barrack busting episode from the press gallery (erm, just three minutes into session):

Step forward, Arthur Morgan, and take a bow.

He chose this occasion to pull what Labour’s Eamon Gilmore labelled “a parliamentary stunt”. With Lenihan ready to deliver the results of his Government’s “exhaustive, bottom-up process” of finalising the Nama legislation, and the Opposition ready to engage in meaningful discussion, Deputy Morgan decided to engage in a bottom-up exercise of his own. Under the guise of a point of order, Arthur called on the Taoiseach to apologise to the people of Ireland for lying about the property bubble, and called on the Government to apologise for robbing the taxpayers.

To howls of frustration from deputies on all sides, and wails of protest from the poor beleaguered Bull in the chair, Arthur refused to shut up. Perhaps the fact that his party leader, Gerry Adams, was beaming down from the visitors’ gallery had something to do with his outburst.

Twice, the House was suspended. This was not the sort of attention needed by John O’Donoghue (On the plus side though, it might have given The Bull a chance to take in a couple of horse races on the telly.) Following protracted negotiations with the Superintendent of the House and the Captain of the Guard, bolstered in the closing moments by the arrival of Big Martin, the beefiest of Dáil ushers, Arthur finally stopped playing to the disgusted gallery.

“Following discussion with my colleagues, we have decided that I will withdraw,” he said huffily, before taking his leave. Gerry hopped out of the gallery ahead of him and the two exited together.

The incident provided the day’s only example of cross-party unity, when Government deputies applauded Enda Kenny and Eamon Gilmore after they called on Arthur to cop himself on.

After which the Dail got down the real business of the day… announcing the bonus discount being made available on the distressed assets of the banks that were promised cover by that guarantee scheme cooked up in the dying days of last September

In a nutshell, €77 billion of distressed assets – Biffo, Bertie, The Bull, Cabinet and backbenchers not included – are to be bought at a 30 per cent discount.

According the Irish Times’ simple guide to Nama, 47% is the average fall in property prices assumed by the Government’s Nama calculations. That would appear to be substantially above the level of those ‘extreme case’ precedents cited by Morgan Kelly “that real prices of residential and commercial property would return to their levels of the mid-to-late 1990s, two thirds below peak values.”

Hmmm… this one is going to roll and roll…

PS, the Emergency with a satirical account of what’s really going on under the skin… H/T the superb Mark Little Twitter feed

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  • Kanya

    Imma let you finish Ireland but the German taxpayer is the one of the best taxpayers of all time!

  • Typical behaviour from the Sinn Féin ‘All Gong and No Dinner’ Party. As if SF wouldn’t be trooping behind Brian Cowen if they had succeeded, in 2007, in getting into power with Fianna Fáil as they had so clearly wished.

  • mairseail ui neill

    You truly are a bitter and angry (I was going to say little) man Concubhar.

  • Only Asking.

    This was a stunt and the party leader was there to oversee it. SF are too bloody stupid to realise that this was too important for political stunts like this.

    One of the most important debates in the history of the state and Adams crew misbehave. The southern electorate should take note.

  • An ad hominem attack from Mairseáil – I suppose I should be grateful that it’s merely a verbal attack.

    What did I say that makes you think that I’m bitter and angry – not to say little – Mairseáil. Am I not merely stating the obvious? What have SF delivered except hot air, school closures and brokemn promises? Didn’t the party make clear its ambition to be a partner in government with FF at the last election?

    I’m not surprised at the man not ball attack. Sinn Féin is in decline – possibly terminal decline. It’s succeeded in getting itself into government with the right wing DUP in NI – and is very comfortable in its new role. But it doesn’t like being reminded that the first item on its agenda isn’t change but itself and its own power….

  • Only Asking

    Agreed Concubhar. That party will never get into partnership in the south, its policies are much too out of sinyc with every other party in the republic. All’s thats left for them is stunts and bad behaviour, its the only way they will get notice. They may be in decline, but no one will be able to ignore them.

  • DC

    I caught the BBC Hardtalk interview with Patrick Swayze last night, but something he said rings true here:

    “the best way to screw up somebody’s life is to give them what they want – you reach a goal and wow why isn’t this enough?”

    I’m thinking power-sharing between the DUP-SF, they’ve got it and they’ve been found out as beyond reaching the goal of power both have been unable to put it to any use. Looking a bit short on ideas.

    This stunt reminds me of this. Im also mindful of Gerry Adams’ “cockadoodledo” outburst. Great pretenders.

  • They may not ignore them – but today they’re laughing at Sinn Féin. Trust SF to turn a huge opportunity to rightly attack the government for its misguided NAMA policies and present a radical and constructive alternative into an own goal. That’s the midas touch of Sinn Féin for you….

  • Itwas SammyMcNally whatdoneit

    Well done Arthur, someone needed to remind eveyone why we are in this mess. If you cant demand an apology, delay proceedings and embarass the applaing government when the country has been crippled by that same government when can you?

    The majority of the Plain People of Ireland would no doubt like to do the same – although they would probably like to add a good boot up the hole to a few of the incompetent corrupt feckers.

  • OC

    I am amazed at the brouhaha over Rep Wilson calling out during Obama’s speech, “You lie”, over claims that illegal aliens would be excluded from Obamacare.

    Rep Wilson was even censured by the House.

  • Only Asking

    OC wrong continent.

    Though there are plenty of representative chambers on these islands where a shout of’you lie’ would be appropriate. NAMA is not Obama, drink some coffee.

  • OC

    “NAMA is not Obama…”

    True.

    But the level of discussion that apparently would cause the end of the US Senate and House of Representatives is routinely dealt with in even the Mother Of All Parliaments.

  • dunreavynomore

    Only Asking;
    Suppose there was an Outside Broadcast from, say, Cooley, and the subject was NAMA, then that would be an OBNAMA which is close to OBAMA. O, be damned to the lot of them, I’ll just get me hat which reminds me that poor old Gandhi was used to walking in bare feet leaving him with very callused feet and that he ate a lot of rice which had an effect on his breath with the upshot that he was a super callused fragile mystic hexed with halitosis.

  • OC

    “super callused fragile mystic hexed with halitosis”

    Good one!

  • Only Asking

    But the level of discussion that apparently would cause the end of the US Senate and House of Representatives is routinely dealt with in even the Mother Of All Parliaments.

    OC, I’m not sure its comparing like with like. The level of discussion after ‘you lie’ was huge, but it was outside the house, not carrying on like the shinner who disrupted the house and it had to be suspended. Turning Nancy Pelosi’s head was about as much damage that was done, and an apology to the president offered afterwards. Thats a whole lot more civilised than what the shinner did with the nodding approval of the shinner head honcho, mr grizzly.

    super callused fragile mystic hexed with halitosis.

    Now say it backwards dunreavy! 😉

  • dunreavynomore

    It was hard enough front ways, Only Asking.

  • Mick Fealty

    Could they have put down motion of no confidence? That might at least have put the Opposition on the back foot procedurally? Not all sure how any of this will have improved their standing, either inside or outside the Dail…

  • RepublicanStones

    I could be wrong but watching bits of the debate over the last few days, the only party I heard calling for an election was the shinners. Which may be indicative of their political immaturity. It seems Enda Kenny et al realise theres little pleasure to be had in gettin a crack at the whip if its covered in shite.

  • Danny O’Connor

    Even a broken clock is right twice a day.