Sunday, April 29, 2012

Threatening and Bullying The Electorate

The Government has decided that the best strategy to win a Yes vote in the forthcoming European Stability Treaty referendum is to bully and threaten us into submission.  There's no backup fund, says Noonan.  Even the normally tempered Leo Varadkar warned how we would be denied access to the fund.  If the Lisbon Treaty was trumpeted as a "Vote Yes for Jobs", perhaps this could be trumpeted as a "Vote Yes for Cash" referendum.

The argument needs to be taken to its logical conclusion.  If it is argued that we would run out of cash, and be unable therefore to meet the public sector pay bill, and repayments on existing debt, our domestic banks would crash (not having cash for ATM machines), and the sovereign would default.  That would result - effectively - in an exit from the Euro, and would most likely trigger an exit of Greece and Portugal.  The alternative would be that Ireland finds money from somewhere else.

Saving that alternative for a moment, and presuming that this is indeed the alternative to a Yes vote, why has the government put us in this position?  This is Hobson's Choice.  It is not a vote at all, but a ridiculous proposition that unnecessarily exposes the State to the whims of an electorate who is angry, hurting, and not in a good place to make a rational choice.  How inept a government to put the state so at risk! 

Of course the truth of the matter is not there.  There is a backup, there is always a backup.  If we vote no, there will be other sources of funding.  There will be options, and other cards to play.  These are admittedly high stakes, but Ireland has choices.  It is offensive to me that the Government don't see fit to share them with us.

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