Corruption in Ireland - The Discussion



JCR

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Sounds good but they should say free drink on the poster. People are just suspicious of "refreshments" at this stage, it might not mean free drink. It might just mean Fine Gael tay and Shinner brack with shrapnel in it left over from Halloween.
 

Spirit Of Newgrange

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7:45 to 9:45 ?

that will barely skim the surface of all the stink.
 

Franzoni

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The majority are comfortable with a bit of skullduggery once it doesn't go too far...and even then they do fook all bar moan about it.....

Nothing will be allowed to interfere with the resumption of fukwittery and the sales of 182 chelsea tractors.....
 

Sinnfein1916

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Catholicism is heavily interlinked with corruption in Ireland as well as the cultural ambivalence towards corruption.
 

Lumpy Talbot

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No
I was told by my grandfather that you would always see the biggest crooks in any parish in the front pews at mass on a Sunday and that was visually verifiable back in the dim and distant when any of my family used to go to mass (generally two generations to a couple of faltering members of the family one generation up).

Probably not a great idea to have a philosophy that you can be an a55hole all week and get the old 'sins' wiped away on a Saturday in the ju-ju box, it has to be said.

Then again I think a far greater contributor to the ambivalence towards corruption comes from postcolonialism. At one time the 'cute hoor' was admired for pulling strokes as he or she was only pulling the wool over the eyes of the local colonial overlord or power.

Come the short-lived Republic and those 'cute hoors' in addition to the counter-revolutionary influences in conservative corners in Ireland contributed largely to the transfer of 'cute hoor' skills against the laws and regulations of an emergent Republic.

The formation of a Republic in Ireland is a crippled concept. It is always regarded as something historical that happened roughly between 1916 and 1948 and sort of trapped in aspic from there.

There has never really been a sense of ownership of an ongoing evolution of a Republic in Ireland penetrating beyond the judiciary and they are as guilty as anyone of aping what they see abroad rather contributing to any Republican egalitarian ideals. If anything when it comes to property they may well have inhibited the development of a Republic with the continuance of a notion that there should be various tiers of justice for the landed man and the man without land.

You only have to look at the case of a well known journalist caught out in some serious criminal activity allowed latitude to access middle class remedies such as having his head felt for a few years while he recovered enough to face charges (not a facility available to your average Joe off the local housing estate) or the kid gloves around one of the most notoriously corrupt sectors of Irish public life- the 'charity chief').

Civil servants caught at an airport with large sums of cash. Tribunals pointing to clear cases of public corruption and no action taken.

Either the Irish legal system is inadequate when it comes to corruption or it is bent in and of itself.

It is not as if there aren't clear remedies. (1) A system of plea-bargaining (2) the equivalent of the RICO (Racketeering in Concert with Others) legislation which is in use in US states and has very successfully been used to target organised crime.

The fact that our judicial and policing systems seem oblivious to these obvious tools with which to tackle corruption both at low level in terms of fraud around public assets in relation to planning and housing officials at local authority level and at the level of certain party donors who continue to evade criminal prosecution for no known reason is an interesting theme in itself.

We know representatives of the Garda Siochana attend training, rather expensively, in the US, but also that they never seem to notice the tools that are deployed in other jurisdictions to great effect. This is strange in itself.
 

Sinnfein1916

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Not necessarily a post colonial mindset, in Transparency International's 2017 Report three of the top 10 countries perceived to be the least corrupt are former colonies eg Norway, Finland and Singapore.

As unpopular as It is to say It there is a link between Catholicism and tolerance for White Collar crime. Saying that in the North of Ireland we all know that the DUP are the Norths version of Fianna Fáil when It comes to corruption so clearly some Protestants condone corruption.
 

Analyzer

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According to a recent PRAVDA-rte documentary, a certain oligarch just happens to be a harmless gent who loves giving money to charity.
 

Franzoni

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Well Lumpy i didn't need to be told fook all by my grandad as they had second alter rail to keep us plebs out love of God and make sure we knew our place.

unfortunately we still have generation of retards..........
 

Lumpy Talbot

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The point about some other countries having been colonies is an interesting one. You'd have to take in the difference in cultures between Norway, Finland and Ireland. The old Scandinavian lads do have a culture of calling a spade a spade whereas in Ireland we refer to many of our most notorious crooks as 'wealth creators'.

Singapore appearing on a Transparency International report as one of the three least corrupt nations (and I think TI are measuring perceptions of corruption rather than occurrence of corruption) is something of an interesting claim in itself as it may well onshore be very corruption free but it is home to some serious proceeds of crime money and money laundering on a grand scale.

It is notably the world's most secretive jurisdiction and whenever there is a crack down in Hong Kong on the usual bribery around the commercial and residential property market there the Singaporean and Indonesian banks tend to see a sudden influx of Hong Kong money being suddenly stuffed out of sight.

There may be very little low-level corruption in Singapore but there is almost certainly a vast elephant in that room in terms of facilitation of high level corruption.
 

Lumpy Talbot

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Actual occurrences of corruption and the perception of corruption are clearly two very different things.

In an era when councillors were appearing on a Friday evening to pick up their bribery envelopes, when planning and zoning were just code words for a shopping list of levels of bribery, when we had 'regulators' who were clearly just old-pal appointments purely for the optics we went through a period where there was a welter of corruption in the state.

Even Cyprus which had much the same experience as we had actually produced an official report which stated that they had experienced corruption in the nexus between politics and finance.

We refused officially to acknowledge even that much. Mostly because we can't stand negative optics and will as a state lie our bollocks off in public rather than admit there is an issue. It is probably tied into an uneasiness about how we are perceived in the world.

Back to post-colonial feelings that we must pretend that we are grown up rather than actually growing up. There are signs that this is changing at last, notably in the area of social justice and equality.Let's hope that spreads into the waiting areas of governance and good regulation.
 

Disillusioned democrat

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Any discussion about corruption in Ireland needs to consider the Moriarty Tribunal in order to see the full spectrum, it’s very representative of how Ireland “works”.

Moriarty demonstrated that someone bribed a government minister to secure a lucrative license below market cost. In many countries that would be the end of both careers, with some jail time thrown in for good measure.

In Ireland two bizarre situations occur.

1 - the government stays doing business with the person who bribed the government minster, time and again giving that individual high-profile business that inevitably led to another inquiry (but one being kept very low key it has to be said).

2 - the good people of the ministers parish continued to send him back to the Dail again and again. The minister is now a criminal having been found guilty of tax fraud and it’s likely that the same good people will send him to the Dail again (or if the writing is on the wall he will “retire” gracefully and maybe his kid will pick up the families sleazy baton.

Many decent Irish people look on aghast as this pattern repeats over and over again to a lesser scale across the country, but it needs political will to stop.
 

Lumpy Talbot

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The Moriarty Tribunal is indeed a microcosm of the attitude to corruption at a high level in the state and the state stands condemned for it.

At a local level we have people working in local authorities who are twisting the system so that they or their direct family benefit from housing which the tax and ratepayer pays for.

We all know about the culture within the Gardai. That has become fairly obvious over the last number of years.

I see no reforms being scheduled.
 

Pizza Man

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Many decent Irish people look on aghast as this pattern repeats over and over again to a lesser scale across the country, but it needs political will to stop.
But what can "political will" do in a situation where it is very clear that sections of the Irish electorate are quite happy repeatedly to elect convicted terrorists, tax thieves and a hotch-potch selection of various categories of sleaze-mechants to their National Parliament?

Fact is that, whether we like it or not, a significant proportion of the Irish electorate appears to have absolutely no problem in electing a wide range of artful dodgers/cute hoors to represent them in the Dáil (and in the European Parliament in the case of the missing Munster MEP!) - and there's not much that "political will" can do to change that. Legislation cannot change mindsets.
 

Lumpy Talbot

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Trouble with corruption is that it is by its nature so insidious. Anyone going up against it or being invited to join it is immediately seen as an enemy that needs to be 'fixed'.

And that becomes habitual to those engaged in and benefiting from corruption. What it needs is specialist tools such as the ones I mention with RICO legislation and plea-bargaining.
 

wombat

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We had a case this week where CAB seized the proceeds of crime from a drug gang. It took huge effort to gather the evidence and the reward was on the lower scale when compared with the profits over the years. We also saw the trials of bankers and how difficult it is to get convictions. We demand instant action rather than results - apart from Moriarity we had the beef tribunal which revealed fraud but no consequence whereas what we need are slow, painstaking police investigations resulting in convictions for whatever crimes were committed. If I was involved in a large, white collar crime, I'd plant a few leaks in the media and get a TD to raise a fuss in the Dail, knowing it would lead to a tribunal and no jail time.
 

Man or Mouse

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But what can "political will" do in a situation where it is very clear that sections of the Irish electorate are quite happy repeatedly to elect convicted terrorists, tax thieves and a hotch-potch selection of various categories of sleaze-mechants to their National Parliament?

Fact is that, whether we like it or not, a significant proportion of the Irish electorate appears to have absolutely no problem in electing a wide range of artful dodgers/cute hoors to represent them in the Dáil (and in the European Parliament in the case of the missing Munster MEP!) - and there's not much that "political will" can do to change that. Legislation cannot change mindsets.
Sadly, the one body that did have the power to change mindsets, seemed to have no interest in doing so, the RCC. As Lumpy said earlier, one could be an assholé all week and have the lot expunged on a Saturday night. That definitely contributed to the white collar end of roguery in this country.

I had a couple of brothers in law who were master poachers back in the day. Nearing Christmas one year, one arrived with a bag of salmon to get on my good side for some nefarious reason or other. When I sat him down and opened one of them to reveal it was stuffed with eggs, the flesh had lost most of it's pink colour etc, I gave him a good dressing down and he was repentant in the extreme. Told me he had seen the light and would never do it again. Some time later, I had reason to seek him out and visited his local tavern - not much point in looking for him at home - and the barman leaned out over the counter and asked me confidentially, "Is it a salmon you're after?"

That story is just to show how ingrained the bit of roguery is in us. Hard to eradicate. Sure isn't that what a certain percentage of voters see in Lowry in this part of the world?
 


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