Friday, 16 September 2011

Questions for you

A couple of questions for you.

1: Are you a complete fuckwit at your job?

2: Have you left a trail of devastation in your wake, driving corporations and whole countries to bankruptcy?

If so then you’re indeed a lucky man. Because untold riches and a luxurious trouble-free retirement beckon when your time comes. One of the first of a long line of such luminaries was Richard Burroughs. Having carefully guided Bank of Ireland over the cliff, Dickie, brandishing a massive severance package, and encomiums to his years of ‘service’, immediately landed a plum job as Chairman of BAT (British American Tobacco). If you’ve shares in BAT, sell ‘em now.

The latest is Dermot McCarthy, erstwhile top civil servant, Ireland’s own Sir Humphrey. As one ex-colleague bitterly recounted, McCarthy ‘was the grand architect of everything that went wrong in this country’. Indeed he was. Mind you he wasn’t short of company, and some things he did very well. Like in 2005 when, after a series of tense negotiations with himself, he awarded himself and his fellow mandarins an eye-watering 25% pay increase for that one year alone.

And a very special retirement deal as well, which means that he walks out, at the ripe old age of 57, with a severance package of €700,000 and a lifetime index-linked pension of €150,000. Not bad, huh? And the rest of the nation-wreckers have received, and will continue to receive, similar ‘compensation’ packages’. A deeply religious and charitable man, nicknamed The Cardinal, he undoubtedly subscribes to the old aphorism that charity begins at home. And maybe ends there as well, who knows?

As the Lone Ranger would say to Tonto, before riding off into the sunset having cleaned up another town ‘our work here is done’. In the case of our other heroes, we can only hope that their work is, in fact, done, and that they'll disappear, as rapidly as possible, into the fading sun, clutching their ill-gotten gains.

Incidentally, have you ever wondered, as I have frequently, about the Lone Ranger’s mask? About as effective as a pair of sunglasses. Whatever about his other qualities, he was no master of disguise.


Bemused stare said...

To answer, no and no.

In the spirit of the topic, a friend put me on to a really interesting game. Perhaps some will give it a whirl. To play you need to have news casts from tv where Barry does some lip movement.

First off, print off this pic.

Secondly, wait till your favorite HNIC gets on tv and check off a block each time you hear him say a phrase listed. When you get 5 in a row, JUMP OUT of your seat and yell
as loudly as you can


Loads of fun for the whole lets play Barack's Bullshit Bingo!!!

Franz said...

Don't fret Savant! That civil servant won't have to manage with a measly €700.000+€150.000. He is about to launch a public-speaking career and will be command fees not under €100.000 for each of those speeches to select audiences.

Evil conspiracy theorists like yourself are probably convinced that these speaking engagements are barely concealed bribes for services rendered while that civil servant in question still was in office.

Nothing could be further from the truth. Normal people love to pay a king's ransom in order to listen to an old bureaucrat drone on about five-year plans long forgotten. What gives the conspiracy theorists the idea that there's something wrong with that?

kudzo bob said...

You think Ireland is bad this way? The US of A is ten times worse.

Corkonian said...

It looks like about 100 more of the fuckers who brought us down are going to take a similar deal to McCarthy's in the next two years.

Our tax dollars (Euros) at work!

Clogheen said...

True, Franz. Our retired Esteemed leader Bertie Aherne is trousering €40k. per 'lecture'. When it comes to being articulate this guy mankes GW Bush sound like Cicero!

Anonymous said...

Savant, some unkind people would say that this post has no relevance to the subject at hand.

I disagree. It shows lots of fuckwits. Please watch and be prepared to hose your hosiery.

A five minute capsule of 9/11 ... and thereafter.

Have a good weekend,

Uncle Nasty.

Anonymous said...

Savant, concerning the Lone Ranger and Tonto,do you see something here thats not Kosher,what i mean is a grown man wearing a mask and hanging out with a indian that speaks better English then he, i could go on and dont get me stated on Batman and Robin, my God whatwent in that bat cave along with a english butler,but the one that really got me was Red Ryder, heres a 40 something guy running around the woods with a little indian kid shooting off bb guns and he calls the kid LITTLE BEAVER,

Anonymous said...

well at least my grannie in Mayo has my aunts tv and radio in her name,are they still doing yhat,

Anonymous said...

ironnically when they came out in later yrs with a Lone Ranger movie not the actor pictured, they made this character Clayton Moore cease and desist from making commercials and apperances with the mask, and he had to do it with dark shades,btw, the movie was a bust and the kid who stared as masked man was never heard of again.

Franz said...

@ Clogheen

It was precisely for the reason of not so hidden bribes as Mr Ahern is receiving that the founding fathers of the Roman Republic instituted an open system of justice.

Prosecutors then were neither appointed nor elected. Any ambitious young man could come onto the forum and declare to his fellow citizens: "Gajus soandso is a corrupt swine and I will prosecute him for it." In fact, that was the way Cicero launched his career.

Back then, political fat cats never had the chance to cozy up to judges and prosecutors. Because every Roman citizen with courage and a basic knowledge of law was free to take a shot at them.

If such a citizen managed to secure a conviction for a corrupt office holder, he could in turn gain entry and advance in the politics of the state. He didn't need party approval, because there were no parties. Each man was considered upon his own abilities, integrity and above all: courage.

Thus, Roman republican politics were a brutal dog-eat-dog affair which demanded leadership by example because everything else was despised. But then, such naked meritocracy produced leaders like Cincinnatus, Titus Manlius Torquatus, Scipio Africanus and many, many more.

Where most countries have had one great leader (William Wallace, Garibaldi, Peter the Great) whose example is cited over and over again, the Romans managed to mass-produce such personalities.

For almost 500 years the Roman republic guaranteed the freedom and rights of its citizens. What is the half-life of the "new and improved" states of Europe? Clue: The French are now at heir fourth or fifth Republic. I keep forgetting.

There is a reason public schools have only the decline and fall of Rome on the curriculum these days. Knowing about half a millenium of deeply politically incorrect, but all the more succesful Republicanism could give the peasants the wrong idea...

Sorry for the rant. But it makes me mad that the recipes for greatness are perfectly clear and readily available in any history book. Yet our continent is going in precisely the OTHER direction, instituting a dictatorship of bureaucratic Borgs. Good thing these creeps are already fumbling with the "self-destruct"-button.

Heraclitus said...

Not a rant Franz, rather a very astute observation. It's become an overedone cliche I know, but the only thing we seem to learn from history is that we don't learn from history.

And yes, I'd never thought about it that way, but Rome did, as you point out, seem to have a conveyor belt of great leaders, which surely had to be as a result of the polity you describe.

Excellent and thought-provoking.

Heraclitus said...

@anon 6.04 - yes, in more innocent times such deeply suspicious relationships never raised an eyebrow.

Those of you old enough might remember the cartoon figure Curley Wee. This was a pig who disported himself in a nice jacket - but that was all. No trousers!

Innocent days indeed. Or were they?

Franz said...

@ Heraclitus

To be fair, it probably was not just the "system" which made the Roman Republic great. The founding stock of the city had great breeding as well.

Look hard at this image of Lucius Brutus, founder of the republic:

1) The man looks about as Mediterranean as Swedish actor Max von Sydow.
2) The intensity and sternness on display in Brutus' features. The man seems to hail hardly from the same species as the deer-eyed Dave-chubby-cheeks-Cameron and his ilk.

Anonymous said...

Franz- "There is a reason public schools have only the decline and fall of Rome on the curriculum these days. Knowing about half a millenium of deeply politically incorrect, but all the more succesful Republicanism could give the peasants the wrong idea... "

Franz, could you recommend a good book about the rise and brilliance of the Roman Republic ?

To others - there are some books that I would like to buy, eg by Kevin McDonald, but would rather get them with cash. Are there any bookstores in Ireland, or even London, that sells such books ?

Rob said...

@Franz 20:41
The funny thing is that we look down on countries in Southern or Eastern Europe where bribery and corruption are open and unabashed.
But we have the system whereby retired politicians and bureaucrats are paid tens of thousands for speeches that people would pay to avoid listening to when they were in office. And of course they're given directorships of companies of whose business they know absolutely nothing and pocket a million per annum for attending one meeting a year. This is just a delayed form of bribery under the thinnest and most pathetic of disguises.

white rose said...

anon 10.59. Interesting that you should ask. I do have McDonald's book 'The Culture of Critique' but have not seen it any ANY of the populat bookshops. And I'm an avid bookshop peruser.

Anonymous said...

It astounds me that corruption is played out in the open this way as a matter of routine.

In the not too distant past this would have been unthinkable, not so much the corruption, but the sheer brazenness of these new, improved sinecures, to stick two fingers up at the public.

When will people take these vermin to task? When they have to rake through bins for their next meal?

Franz said...

@ Anon 10:59

My own introduction to the Roman Republic were actually the German schoolbooks my Uncle had in the fifties. He never threw them away and let me have them one day. Both with respect to the ancient Romans and the Greeks, the authors back then made no bones about their admiration.

One rather new book which you may buy on amazon is "Chronicle of the Roman Republic: The Rulers of Ancient Rome from Romulus to Augustus."

Warning: Especially the preface contains the most aburd PC-babble imaginable. But when you skip those pages, you'll find the book extremely informative and entertaining as well.

Also: Wikipedia contains a list of Roman consuls:

Many names are linked to articles and some of these biographies are spectacular to say the least.

Here is one I picked randomly:

'Lucius Papirius Cursor

His cognomen, Cursor, means "The Runner", as he was able to walk over 50 Roman miles a day in full marching order and demanded the same from his soldiers.'

Contrast that with the kind of "leadership" we see nowadays!

northern athiest said...

It's true - the corrupt ones are hiding in plain sight, in all our countries. as some poster said, their brazenness is breathtaking.

Anonymous said...

In today's Sunday inDependent there is an obituary for Cliff Robertson who was asked to pay tax on $10 000 he was owed by a studio which he was adamant he never received.
One of the studio big shots forged his name on a cheque and cashed it himself.
Robertson was despised by the studios after this and the guy moved to another big role at MGM.

Reference to Cecil B De Mille who was asked why did the studios not make 10 $1 million movies rather than 1 $10 million and his reply was "who could steal a million from a million dollar movie? "

Rob said...

@Anon 13:35
Just read that obit myself. Robertson was advised by the FBI that he should fear for his life after exposing the racket.

awakened said...

That's 100% true about Hollywood. The opportunity for theft was what it was all about. But nobody talks about it - they know the Cliff Roberetson story only too well.

Anonymous said...

I am reminded of a really bad joke from the seventies, I think, when this sort of thing was popular.

If the answer is "Cock Robin ...", what is the question? I will go no further on that one.

Seriously though, here is an interesting article that asks the interesting questions. The most important of which being: when do we dump the sham of democracy, and start getting, shall we say, active?

Scroll to:

Brandenburg Lecture #2

From Radio Free Northwest - September 15th, 2011

Okay, all you FBI guys, Joint Terrorism Task Force droids, and Southern Poverty Law Center creeps out there, you need to cup your hands around your ears, lean over your computers, and listen real close, because it’s time now for this week’s Brandenburg Lecture.

Just to remind anyone who may have missed last week’s podcast, the Brandenburg Lectures is what we’re calling a series of commentaries on Radio Free Northwest named after the landmark 1969 Supreme Court ruling in the case of Brandenburg versus Ohio. That ruling basically states that any discussion of—oh, what will we call it here?—"non-consensual regime change" in Washington DC, is in fact constitutionally protected speech under the First Amendment.

What do we mean by non-consensual regime change? What we mean is change, real change, in America. Real change in who runs this country, who and how and in whose interests it is run.


Uncle Nasty

Anonymous said...

off topic savant, do you know if one of your German blog folks could some how get me a ww1 pickle haub helmet with the spike or a steel helmet of german www1 era, for decorator purposes only.

Fiachra O'Blodbaoith said...

Fiachra O'Blodbaoith says.
My goodness, what a man. Aryan manhood to his fingertips; the steady gaze, radiating integrity, the air of true moral authority, that powerful and humane intellect which, understanding all can forgive all----did UBS not appreciate what they had in this paragon?

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...

off topic savant, do you know if one of your German blog folks could some how get me a ww1 pickle haub helmet with the spike or a steel helmet of german www1 era, for decorator purposes only.

19 September 2011 05:28

You can get them here, Laddie, but they're NOT cheap.

Check out the rules for foreign purchases (assuming you're not in New Zealand)

Good luck,

Uncle Nasty

Anonymous said...

I would not be the Philadelphia Eagles biggest admirer.

A few years ago the fans demanded Andy Reid be sacked because he was perceived as a failure.

He then brought them to a Superbowl.

Earlier this year the fans also wanted him sacked.

Trashing the NY Jets and Dallas Cowboys who could both make the play offs shows what could have been if they were a little luckier this year and suddenly his head appears to be off the block.

What does it take to be perceived as a failure a civil service level?

SAVANT said...

What does it take to be perceived as a failure a civil service level??

I'd say not developing a huge department a la Parkinson's Law, and getting hugely rewarded for it.