And yes, you can bet that …
“They want your f€€€ing retirement money!” – George Carlin (2005)
David Mc Williams is one of Ireland’s leading economic commentators. He was the first economist to see that the Irish boom was nothing more than a credit bubble and one of the very few to accurately predict it would all end in a monumental crash with bank failures, negative equity and rising unemployment and emigration.
In Latin America, just before a bankrupt state entirely runs out of money, it is traditional to try one last smashand- grab for the savings of the private citizen. We have seen this trend not just in South America’s recent financial history but down through the ages, where kings, tyrants and emperors expropriate the wealth of the nation to prop up their dysfunctional regimes.
Could it happen here? Could the savings of the private citizen be expropriated by the State to pay the last of the Croke Park promises? Or worse, could the remaining wealth of the private citizens be used to pay the odious debt of the banks? The answer is yes, and you have to be aware of this because this is often the way things end when a state goes bust.
Hopefully, the new Government will be wise to what was being hatched in the last desperate days of the previous regime. Just before Christmas, the State eyed up savings in our pension funds in one final effort to get its hands on your wealth.
There is a lot of money in Ireland’s private pensions. Currently, there is €48bn in defined benefit private pensions and €23.7bn in defined contribution schemes. This is a lot of bread and could finance a government for a number of years.