Robbery And Other Pursuits

The point of introducing NAMA legislation is this. Investors don’t give a rat’s ass about what it is like to live and work in Ireland: they want relative certainty that they will get a return on their investments. That a generation gets plunged into economic stagnation and debt peonage is neither good nor bad in their eyes: it simply forms a certain basis for making predictions on investment returns. Making the value of built property a central concern of national economic activity may be very bad news for most of the people living there, but that of itself isn’t much of a problem to the calculations of investors, since a heavily indebted workforce is a docile workforce, and the prospect of squeezing labour further never posed much of a problem to robber barons of any nationality. It is tempting to characterise this instance of the party in government’s passionate intensity to built property as Fraggle Rock’s Doozers Do Metaphysics, but that does an injustice to how acutely they grasp the needs of the local members of the class whose interests they serve most faithfully.


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September 2009
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