Sinn Fein cut quotes from three Economists who believe “there is little to be gained from rejecting the Treaty…”

Don’t really know what to say about this, other than cut and paste Karl Whelan’s blog (you can read more here):

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  • FuturePhysicist

    Yip, Sinn Féin leaving it to the likes of Eamon O’Cuiv, Richard Boyd Barret, Ming Flanagan and Joe Higgins to carry the “No” debate by themselves.

  • FuturePhysicist

    Also with regards to the terrible economics, would he mean specifically for the Irish situation, specific countries in general, or the region as a whole?

  • Mick Fealty

    The whole shebang… It’s not a strategy, it’s the only conditions the Germans will let their money go any further… But it is certainly not an answer to the crisis…

  • wee buns

    SF = Outstanding stupidity, to use quotes out of context. While accusing FG of being biased in their own pamphlet …..(shakes head)

  • Shocked. Never would have expected this from Sinn Fein. So undermines its economic case.

  • socaire

    As was said on Joe’s Show on RTÉ today, they can afford to pay off the bankers but they can’t afford to pay for cancer drugs.It’s laughable! If we don’t ‘honour’ our ‘debts’ to the European gamblers then we won’t be able to borrow any more money. What a way to run a country!

  • Mick Fealty

    Slightly off topic there socaire… Did you mean to post on this thread?

  • FuturePhysicist

    Mick do you have an answer to the crisis that will keep 25-27 countries happy? And if not, how do you recognise what the answer really is?

    Stimulus is all well and good, but ignoring the debt problem to create it betrays the ordinary banking depositors who financed the bubble.

  • wee buns

    After tonight’s Mr. V Brown show I amend my previous comment, as it seems it is the Fiscal Treaty website which SF seeks legal advice about as to wither FG displays bias – apparently it brazenly advocates a Yes vote. Taxpayer’s money is supposed to be used solely to inform.

    SF is accused of misleading people by using the partial quotes.

    Phrase of the night goes to Stephen Donnelly (Ind) who described the treaty as ‘Democracy at the point of a gun’.

  • FuturePhysicist

    With regards to it not being a strategy, shouldn’t a strategy be done in national governments who can react on a day by day basis rather than by the finance ministers and heads of state month by month.

    The Treaty is a constraints system, not an Action plan. The attack on this being a “One size fits all” solution is often perpetrated by those against tariffs but happy about a “One size fits all” common market.

    I feel the lesson is either accept the consequences of the common market or get out of it.

  • FuturePhysicist

    @wee buns

    I imagine Fine Gael will win any lawsuit on that. That website clarifies specific details not their consequences, its up to the individual camps to speculate on consequences.

  • Pete Baker

    “The Treaty is a constraints system, not an Action plan.”

    The constraints already exist. The treaty re-inforces the consequences of breaching those constraints.

    It’s what follows that is the real debating point.

    But that’s not part of the treaty…

  • FuturePhysicist

    Unless Sinn Féin are claiming that the website “used partial quotes” and can offer additional information.

  • andnowwhat

    I don’t get the fuss. Parties do this all the time be it in The Republic or the UK. Cameron got where he is by cutting quotes and the obvious manipulation of facts.

    It’s what big boy politics is all about.

  • FuturePhysicist

    @Pete … I said constraints system which would obviously includes enforcement, without which it can be neither considered constrained nor systematic.

  • andnowwhat

    Wee Buns

    It’s been shown on Politics.ie, some weeks ago, that a Yes campaign group is getting public funding. Hopefully, the bullying tactics of Lisbon2 will not win out this time

  • andnowwhat
  • FuturePhysicist

    @andnowwhat

    Self-Censorship and Spin doctoring are unavoidable nature of politics but blatant in writing misrepresentation, can be taken seriously by the individuals involved and of course rebuked.

  • andnowwhat

    FuturePhysicist

    And rightly so. In fact, too little of it goes on in the MSM. The shinners have always been out of their depth on economics. They’d do well to use that pot extracted from the leftovers of their wages once the AIW has been taken, to hire some top notch economists.

  • FuturePhysicist

    @andnowwhat

    I’d say if there’s a NO vote, with the change in the AIW they could probably create their own bank.

  • Mick Fealty

    FP,

    No, I don’t. The Donnelly quote is not far off the mark. This is not to keep striken countries happy, it’s to lock them into something that will keep the German parliament happy.

    But there is a gun. And Ireland’s action will in the first place only affect Ireland. Which is one reason why the SF misquotes are so revealing.

    Economically, the fiscal compact is nuts. Politically, realistically the choice is between austerity and a great deal more austerity… That’s what they’re not telling people.

    If they win, we’ll know. But it won’t be SF who have to pick up the pieces… [rubs hands furiously muttering “happy days”]

  • Drumlins Rock

    SF could just turn a gift horse into an own goal if the referendum debate exposes their economic weakness, if notihng less it forces them to put alot of policy down in black and white which could come back to haunt them.

  • FuturePhysicist

    And if they lose Sinn Féin’s bluff is called, they and more likely the United Left Alliance and independents will make gains, but at the proviso that the Germans will not bailout the Irish economy in its debt crisis and frankly I don’t think the German taxpayer is bothered about letting Ireland’s problem be Ireland’s in that case.

    In the context where the best guns are in the worst marksmen (i.e. those with the highest debts to renege on) it then ignores the reality that somewhere down the line Greece has the ‘best gun’, not Ireland. One can only think is that this helps the “middling European economies” such as Austria and Finland. It’s not even a gun, it’s a suicide bomb.

    The compact prevents people from shooting each other for the sake of it. Trying to control things like markets and banking which are not entirely in Ireland’s or the EU’s domain. In reality, a divided EU allows investors to short sell European goods including Irish ones and allows the IMF to ignore the EU on things like financial reform.

    Remember when Ireland goes back to the markets, with no bailout protection the only gun it can use will be on itself as Europe will be taking a “British approach to the Famine laisser faire attitude”, which only means do your worst. Ireland could sabotage its credit rating by a default, be left marginalised in Europe and have to develop its own subsistence economy. It might “scare” Europe, but in the long run scares China, Brazil, Russia … Tahiti whoever from investing in Ireland. Essentially it is literally protectionism by default.

    There is a compact in either case here Mick… the first in the Yes case the insurance of a revenue creating bailout for more austerity or secondly the No case neither. In my opinion Germany as well as other bailout creditors have got all it wants from Ireland regardless of the Treaty, it has more of a shield against Ireland suicide bombing it in either case.

  • FuturePhysicist

    @Drumlin’s

    As I say, winning the referendum would leave them smug, as would leaving FG-Labour to deal with it also. However it could possibly push them into a situation where they would have to “deal with it” by either joining Fine Gael or an associated coalition in government and they’re going to run away from that like a house on fire, aren’t they?

    Party before country.

  • wee buns

    Referendum territory means manipulation of facts is absolutely ferocious.

    Not only is the ESM treaty intended to furnish itself with complete impunity, where NO existing laws apply (art. 35) – it is grossly unconstitutional & subordinates the powers of the latter.

    VB continues to doggedly peruse the question as to why, knowing that the people may be called to vote on this matter, did Enda & Co already agree to this amendment (art 136) that loads the gun, otherwise known as the ‘blackmail clause’?

    He suggests that it was FG who instigated the amendment, precisely in order to hold the Irish people to ransom. This is denied by FG.

    But when pressed on the question Leo Varadkar’s (FG) retort was interesting: ‘The price of solidarity is discipline’. (Solidarity with whom Leo?)

    If VB’s suspicions are correct – that FG is actively blackmailing the people while blaming it on the Euro zone – we shall likely never know. But given the territory, this Burroughs style ‘cut ups’ of quotes deployed by SF is relatively minor skullduggery.

  • cynic2

    Three Economists in agreement probably means theya re all wrong

  • 241934 john brennan

    This selective misrepresentation of quotes shows that the same old Sinn Fein warriors are still stuck in the same old wartime mode.

  • Mick Fealty

    My reading of it is, for what’s worth, that this is a bit of a nasty shot to the foot for the No campaign… Giving the yes camp an opportunity to pivot on your own message giving them ready made blanks to fill in is pretty foolish.

    Whether or not it will damage SF’s progress in the polls to date, I think that trend is too settled (and the territory ahead too unpredictable) for them to be blown off course at this stage.

    But I have been wrong before…

  • tacapall

    The Shiners should have just informed the public of the truth.

    http://www.thetruthseeker.co.uk/?p=47619

    The European Stabilization Mechanism, Or How Goldman Sachs Captured Europe

    Last November, without fanfare and barely noticed in the press, former Goldman exec Mario Draghi replaced Jean-Claude Trichet as head of the ECB. Draghi wasted no time doing for the banks what the ECB has refused to do for its member governments – lavish money on them at very cheap rates. French blogger Simon Thorpe reports:

    On the 21st of December, the ECB “lent” 489 billion euros to European Banks at the extremely generous rate of just 1% over 3 years. I say “lent”, but in reality, they just ran the printing presses. The ECB doesn’t have the money to lend. It’s Quantitative Easing again.

    The money was gobbled up virtually instantaneously by a total of 523 banks. It’s complete madness. The ECB hopes that the banks will do something useful with it – like lending the money to the Greeks, who are currently paying 18% to the bond markets to get money. But there are absolutely no strings attached. If the banks decide to pay bonuses with the money, that’s fine. Or they might just shift all the money to tax havens.

    “Rather than ratifying the draconian ESM treaty, Europeans would be better advised to reverse article 123 of the Lisbon treaty. Then the ECB could issue credit directly to its member governments. Alternatively, Eurozone governments could re-establish their economic sovereignty by reviving their publicly-owned central banks and using them to issue the credit of the nation for the benefit of the nation, effectively interest-free. This is not a new idea but has been used historically to very good effect, e.g. in Australia through the Commonwealth Bank of Australia and in Canada through the Bank of Canada.”

  • Old Mortality

    tacapall
    ‘But there are absolutely no strings attached. If the banks decide to pay bonuses with the money, that’s fine. Or they might just shift all the money to tax havens.’

    These sentences demonstrate the author’s abysmal ignorance. He is completely out of his depth and so are you if you give him any credence.

  • tacapall

    Old Mortality

    tacapall

    ‘But there are absolutely no strings attached. If the banks decide to pay bonuses with the money, that’s fine. Or they might just shift all the money to tax havens.’

    “These sentences demonstrate the author’s abysmal ignorance. He is completely out of his depth and so are you if you give him any credence.”

    Right enough Old Mortality the banks haven’t done that before with the money the British taxpayer bailed them out with, have they. Obviously you never read the link, the author was a woman.

    Do you work in the financial sector by the way ?

  • wee buns

    FG U turn –

    ”A series of speeches calling for a Yes vote in the upcoming European fiscal treaty referendum have been removed from a Government website designed to provide neutral information on the treaty.”

    http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/breaking/2012/0426/breaking18.html?cmpid=lunchtime-digest&utm_source=lunchtime-digest&utm_medium=email

  • FuturePhysicist

    There is no monetary means of dealing with human vices, no matter what you do there’s loop holes… the only ways to deal with these issues is by social and worker action and by the legislature. More could be done by banker boycotts I feel.

    Also there are enough “national banks” i.e. nationalized banks that the tax payer is paying for again with national economy’s soveriegn debt intermershing with their banking debt this has created its own moral hazzard, it’s called State Capitalism.

    The real problem I believe is that the financial orthodoxy needs to change for the 21st Century when money can be channeled very quickly and resources and labour are measured in different ways. Europe (EU or otherwise) doesn’t design the flow of money, that’s the IMF.

    The Keynesian model would only be possible not by the circular flow of money, but other attributes of wealth such as basic resources, information, labour etc. by social action such as recycling, composting, education and maybe even job sharing.

    Ultimately to overthrow the IMF, you may have to return to a sort of primo-anarchist social model somthing between face to face bartering and tribal stewartships.

  • babyface finlayson

    weebuns
    That is hardly a U turn now is it?
    The website was supposed to be neutral, so they had to take the speeches down.

  • wee buns

    babyf f
    FG’s position – which last night saw Leo Varadkar (FG) defending the website to the hilt, as being not in breach of law. His argument was three fold: (a) the speeches didn’t cost anything to feature on the site, therefore no breach of law (b) the speeches were on a separate link connected to the main site, therefore no breach of law (c) the official campaign had not yet been launched, therefore no breach of the law.

    Now the speeches are gone.

    That’s a U turn, to be polite, otherwise known as cute hoorism – unaccountable – until forced.

    Nice start to the referendum campaign – like a seatbelt sign flashing.

  • Mick Fealty

    Have a look at the new thread to see if there’s any parallels withBoris?

  • babyface finlayson

    wee buns
    well ok I see what you’re saying.
    I guess to me a U turn implies a change in policy, but it’s a pedantic point on my part.

  • Mick Fealty

    Its less a u turn than old form. Govt psrties did ethe same in first Nice , I Think.

  • Billy Pilgrim

    SF have neither misrepresented Karl Whelan, nor taken his words out of context.

    Misrepresentation involves the deliberate distortion of words or actions by placing them in a false context, thereby altering the clear meaning intended.

    But Karl Whelan did indeed say that ‘the economics of this treaty are pretty terrible.’ And he did, indeed, mean exactly that.

    His statement on the economics of the treaty have been reproduced faithfully. His thoughts on how people should vote are irrelevant.

    Clearly he believes other factors override the terribleness of the economics of the treaty, but that doesn’t mean it’s wrong to point out that he, a well-known economist, reckons ‘the economics of the treaty are pretty terrible.’

  • Mick Fealty

    I hear what you say, but the point is he said vote Yes. They all said vote Yes. An honest case for Yes would have to admit theres a major downside. But if the verdict is that the downside of a No is likely much worse, how are you not misrepresenting it?

  • Mac

    “SF have neither misrepresented Karl Whelan, nor taken his words out of context.”

    SF’s problem is that by quoting the man they assign importance to his words/views, importance they can’t very well then take away when the man reveals himself to disagree with them. To do so is misrepresenting him.

  • Old Mortality

    tacapall
    Simon Thorpe a woman? She doesn’t sound very French either.

  • Billy Pilgrim

    Mick

    ‘I hear what you say, but the point is he said vote Yes.’

    No, the point is that SF have ‘misrepresented’ what he said, or ‘taken him out of context.’ But they have done neither. If they had said that Karl Whelan opposed the Treaty, that would be misrepresentation. But they didn’t do that. They just highlighted his (correct, in my view) opinion that ‘the economics of the treaty are terrible.’

    Whelan is a well-known economist. That’s why his views on the economics of the treaty will be of interest to voters. His political views are of much less interest.

    To suggest (as Whelan seems to) that his opinion, which he freely offered, on the subject in which he is an expert, cannot be referenced by those he opposes politically, is ridiculous – and would be recognised as such by all, were his target anyone other than SF.

    ‘But if the verdict is that the downside of a No is likely much worse, how are you not misrepresenting it?’

    On the contrary, if EVEN the Yes side are admitting that ‘the economics of the treaty are pretty terrible,’ it’s absolutely vital that the No side make sure every voter is well aware of that fact.

  • Billy Pilgrim

    Mac

    ‘SF’s problem is that by quoting the man they assign importance to his words/views, importance they can’t very well then take away when the man reveals himself to disagree with them.’

    Karl Whelan one of a small band of high-profile economists in Ireland, whose views on the economics of the treaty are of interest to the people who are about to vote on it. His views on the politics of the thing are no more of interest than those of any other citizen, since that’s not his area of expertise.

    ‘To do so is misrepresenting him.’

    If they’d said: Karl Whelan is voting No, that would be be misrepresenting him. But they didn’t.

    They said that Karl Whelan thinks the economics of the treaty are terrible.

    And he does. He wrote exactly that.

    Now, they USED his statement, and I don’t suppose he wanted them to, especially not to bolster the arguments of the No side, but, well: boo hoo.

    Nevertheless, there is no misrepresentation or taking out of context here – only an overly-precious academic who doesn’t realise that when you put your work out into the world, well, it’s out in the world.

  • BP, Whelan said, “All that said, although I think the economics of this treaty are pretty terrible, on balance, the arguments favour Ireland’s signing up to it.”

    SF says no to the treaty so it has done a selective cut to attempt to bolster its case; Whelan has exposed SF’s machinations; it’s really not that complicated.

  • wee buns

    It can’t be claimed that the quotes are untrue, and if their inclusion leads the reader to believe that the speakers advocate a No vote, well that’s not proof of the actual intention to mislead….
    Advertising – the juxtaposition of ideas & slogans which often/usually bear a questionable relation to one another – it’s up to the consumer to discern.

  • Billy Pilgrim

    Nevin

    ‘…so it has done a selective cut to attempt to bolster its case…’

    So?

    There’s absolutely nothing wrong with being ‘selective’ when quoting, as long as the clearly intended meaning of the quotation is not distorted by a false context.

    As demonstrated, there is no suggestion of that here.

    Clearly, SF and Whelan differ in terms of their political judgement, but they are as one on the economics of the treaty.

    SF quoted (accurately) a high-profile economist who, like them, believes ‘the economics of the treaty are pretty terrible.’

    So what?

  • Mac

    “Karl Whelan one of a small band of high-profile economists in Ireland, whose views on the economics of the treaty are of interest to the people who are about to vote on it. His views on the politics of the thing are no more of interest than those of any other citizen, since that’s not his area of expertise.”

    This is economics we are dealing with, not physics.
    For that reason, there is no clear line of demarcation between the views you seem to think people should heed and those you think they should give no weight to.

    Selective quoting, especially when quote isn’t even a complete sentence let alone a complete thought is misrepresentation.
    It’s like the ‘reviews’ you get on a bad movie’s poster with half a sentence attributed to the sun.com But as we all now know, they were usually quotes from shills or joe public in the comments section, or worse still Paul Ross.

  • Mick Fealty

    Billy,

    It’s a political treaty with economic consequences… Davin-Power was spot on when he made the comparison with ropey west end shows who deceptively cut single words out of middling reviews…

  • babyface finlayson

    If you read the full statement from which this quotation is taken, Whelan goes on to make economic points as to why Ireland should sign up to the treaty, not political ones.
    So his opinion as an economist has clearly been taken out of context and misrepresented.

  • “There’s absolutely nothing wrong with being ‘selective’ when quoting”

    BP, it seems fairly clear that the purpose of the partial quote was to deceive the electorate, not just to put a spin on the economist’s judgement.

  • Billy Pilgrim

    Mac

    ‘…there is no clear line of demarcation between the views you seem to think people should heed and those you think they should give no weight to.’

    I haven’t said people should or shouldn’t listen to anyone. I have said that Karl Whelan is recognised as an authority on economics, and there is a public appetite in the south for the opinions of such people. Far too great an appetite, in my opinion, and I’m no fan of Whelan, but that public appetite is there, and it’s obvious why politicians would cite such ‘authorities’ when making their case.

    ‘Selective quoting, especially when quote isn’t even a complete sentence let alone a complete thought is misrepresentation.’

    Nonsense, as anyone who has ever written an essay, knows. That’s what a quotation is: a carefully selected extract, used to bolster one’s argument. As long as the clearly intended meaning is conveyed, and not distorted by false context, there is no misrepresentation.

    Mick / Mac

    Your ‘review’ analogy is reasonable, but not in the way you think. It’d be like a movie in which the critic says: ‘Clooney gives the best performance of his career: it’s just a pity it’s wasted in such a bad movie.’

    Of course the moviemakers will put on the poster: ‘Clooney gives the best performance of his career’? Is this misrepresentation? Of course not. The critic DOES think Clooney’s performance is a career-best.

    Babyface Finlayson

    ‘So his opinion as an economist has clearly been taken out of context and misrepresented.’

    So you’re saying that he doesn’t really believe ‘the economics of the treaty are pretty terrible’? Because I have documentary evidence that he DOES think that.

  • Mick Fealty

    Have you been up the West End recently Billy? 🙂

    Try, ‘Clooney gives the best performance of his career, but it won’t save this movie from tanking’?

  • Billy Pilgrim

    Alas it has, as always, been far too long…

  • babyface finlayson

    Billy Pilgrim
    “So you’re saying that he doesn’t really believe ‘the economics of the treaty are pretty terrible’?”
    No but if you read what he said it seems to paraphrase that he thinks signing the treaty is the least worst option.
    So the quote clearly misrepresents him.

  • tuatha

    Leo Varadkar’s (FG) retort was interesting: ‘The price of solidarity is discipline’. (Solidarity with whom Leo?) Possibly, (probably if he’s completely braindead/ignorant or lying) it is the old Continental yen for centralism, solidarity or as Dumas put it, “one for all, all for One” except that the Mouseketeers, in the 20th/21stC version, have no idea, and less interest, in the reality for which they bloodily strive.
    For those with a skerrick of history, it was named after a bundle of twigs with a woodgather’s axe through the centre (as symbolism – the pre industrial version of the kommunist Hammer & Sickle – which, in its iconography, was very specific, not just any old hammer but an engineer’s hammer [circa 1895] and a peasant’s sickle supposedly uniting the urban wage slave with the rural, common-or-garden..err..estate.. serf).
    So, for ten points, what is the modern name for that unbreakable bond of peasants around the central power?
    Why would anyone be surprised that latter day blue shirts are clamouring for such obeisance ..errr obedience?
    BTW, why did CYNIC get a yellow card for stating the blindingly obvious above?

  • Zig70

    Socialists and economists are just theorists. Kinda like Physicists and engineers. You wouldn’t ask a physicists to fix anything, really. I’ve yet to see a credible fiscal policy from SF in the south, which is why I think they choke at 20%. It will be interesting to see if political ambition is bigger than principals and we get a new Labour type evolution. Some would say it has already happened but I think is just SF being careful with the message. I’d vote no, the German banks are on a knife edge and Ireland holds more power than it seems to know. Enda should get Gerry to do the negotiations Dev style.

  • wee buns

    Leo Varadkar TD (he of the suntanned hands) when he speaks of solidarity and discipline, the solidarity part lies with the euro elite; the discipline part with the plain people of Ireland.

    Phrase of the week – (Denis Walshe, president of the CSTU, union of the civil service) –

    ‘I have a soft spot for the troika. It is face down in the Bog of Allan’.