Sunday, December 12, 2010

Wikileaks : U.S. Admired the Celtic Tiger

James Kenny, the US ambassador to Ireland at the time, also reported that Washington was so impressed by the growth of the Irish economy that the then US treasury secretary, John Snow, visited Ireland. A cable, sent on 24 November 2004, may make painful reading on both sides of the Atlantic after the Irish Republic agreed an €85bn bailout with the EU and the IMF last month.

"The … visit of US Treasury Secretary John W Snow was an opportunity for discussion on the 'secrets' of Ireland's success with policy-makers and businessmen who were the architects of Ireland's Celtic Tiger economy. These key figures noted that while the concepts behind Ireland's reforms had been simple, the political will to carry out the reforms had only come in the context of an economic meltdown in the mid-1980s. They said that good-faith relations with labour, investment in education, and a 'dictatorial' leadership that exposed industries to the full discipline of the market had been key to success.
As a euro-zone member, in fact, Ireland had ceded control of its monetary policy to the European Central Bank. The positive result, said McCarthy, were low interest rates … He believed that if Ireland had remained control of monetary policy, the Government would have been tempted to raise interest rates to slow rapid growth in the late 1990s. Instead, the low rates set by the ECB had been a boon to Ireland's private sector and had lent a sense of stability and consistency to the Irish market for foreign investors."(1)

Again, the current 'new normal' of the U.S. economy is an ideological and intellectual failure every bit as large, and unyielding in the face of fact, as what drove the USSR under.

On Ireland:

-'Boon to private sector' should read, The Mother of All Bubbles.

-'Full discipline of the market' - Haven for Corporate Tax Dodgers

- 'Investment in education' - A Skilled Workforce for Hire Outside of Ireland

-'Dictatorial leadership' - Craven Servants to Banks and Finance

1UK Guardian

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