Archive for February, 2010

Fine Gael front bench backs Kenny

February 9, 2010

Why wouldn’t the Fine Gael front bench back their leader?  They are guarding their seats like the plague.   What would be their plan B?  They forget that the election of George Lee saw many many voters defect from other parties.  It’s possible that voters who hadn’t voted much in the past swung into action behind George.

George Lee being snapped up by FG was like a local football team getting a top player from Chelsea but FG dropped the ball and for this reason they don’t deserve to be in government any time soon.  You snooze, you lose and that is what has happened to FG.

The electorate has been ‘had’ yet again by senior politicians who are more interested in hanging on to their jobs for dear life rather than considering what is in the best interest of the State.  Enough of the greed.  We need serious leadership to get us out of the fine mess that we are in.

George Lee – Fine Gael have lost their passport to power

February 8, 2010

What an opportunity missed for Fine Gael.  Does nobody in that party realize what an asset they had in George Lee.  He was one of the very few people in the country who had the ear of the masses.  His grasp of our financial predicament has been superb over a number of years.  Fine Gael didn’t deserve him.  They missed a critical opportunity to leverage themselves into power. So long Fine Gael – your party is on the road to nowhere.

Well done George for biting the bullet and bailing out.   Time is too valuable to waste backing a loser.  We need you back at RTE biting at the heals of all our politicians.  We need to turn this country around and we cannot wait for the Fine Gael slow coaches.

Fine Gael’s loss of George Lee is a very very happy day for Fianna Fail.

irish tax loophole insanity

February 7, 2010

Each week we are treated to new revelations as to how the wealthy dodged taxes in the celtic boom.  Here are just a few that I learned about from today’s papers.

1.  Stamp Duty Avoidance by Developers.  There was a mechanism called ‘resting on contract’ used as a vehicle to avoid stamp tax on property purchases.  Many developers were able to avoid this tax by never taking title to the property despite paying for the asset.  Seemingly, even local authorities used the loophole.

This is apparently proving to be a major issue in relation to Nama.  The banks have the assets as collateral but exactly what happens in a default scenario if the title is still registered in the name of the former owner?? Very tricky.  I see lawyers getting very rich on this one!! Once again, we taxpayers were conned.

2.  Capital Gains Tax Loophole.  Wow, this really shocked me as the transaction is so simple that it is hard to believe that it existed.  Here is how it worked.  A Capital Loss needed to be created to offset Capital Gains.  To do this, you would simultaneously purchase and sell Irish Gilt futures.  The transaction would generate a profit and a loss for the same amount.  The profit would be free of CGT but you could claim a tax break for the losses.  You could then use the losses against any capital gain,  property purchase or whatever.  Simple!   I wonder how much the exchequer lost on that.

3. Section 482 Relief available to passive investors has been closed off.  These investors put money into section 482 buildings and gardens.  Taxpayers – If you want an example of where your  tax money went under this scheme, just check out the state of Dunboy Castle near Castletown Bere.  Millions squandered with no hope whatsoever of a recovery.

Yes, we all know it – we taxpayers have been well and truly had!!

posted by Catherine FitzMaurice, Kilbrogan House, Bed and Breakfast

St Colmans Cathedral Cobh Carillon Bells

February 7, 2010

2010 will be the 83rd year of the hour long recitals on the Carillon at St Colmans Cathedral in Cobh.  For any tourists planning to visit Cobh in the summer (any time between May and September) on a Sunday, be sure to be there at 4.30pm to listen to the bells sounding out over the town.

The 49 bell Carillon is the only such instrument in the country and is the largest in Britain and Ireland.   You can even watch the carillonneur playing on a close circuit tv inside the cathedral at the base of the tower.

To check out what the bells sound like, Adrian Gebruer has his own website: