The board of the Financial Regulator gathered today to lie through their collective teeth about how they dealt with Sean Fitzpatrick’s dirty little secrets. Outgoing boss Patrick Neary was asked just one question by the useless gaggle of politicians pretending that they have power to actually bring these people to account.
Chairman of the board, Jim Farrell, far from apologising to the Irish people instead expressed regret that Neary was going. Farrell then went on to tell us that changes had been made in the way business was being done, more changes were on the way, a more intense form of regulation is the new game in town apparently. Of course it’s all just waffle to keep the peasants happy until something else distracts their attention.
The useless politicians seemed to be very well informed on how bad things are at the Financial Regulator. Fianna Fail Senator Geraldine Feeney called the board a pack of liars, her colleague FF TD Joe Behan also claimed that somebody was lying over the infamous letter. This letter, by the way, was a denial by Anglo Irish Bank that anything was wrong and its ‘misplacement’ brought to a complete halt the entire investigative powers of the Financial Regulator – apparently.
Other politicians said the regulator was not fit for purpose and there was a general call for resignations. Of course, the unaccountable board told the useless politicians to take a hike, that they had no intention of resigning.
Dermot Quigley former Chairman of the Revenue Commissioners, another state agency that doesn’t believe in bothering bankers too much when it comes to the law, was in charge of the internal ‘investigation’.
Hilariously, he said the Irish regulatory system was admired all over the world for its effectiveness, perhaps he meant by the mafia? Our system is a principles based system which means trusting bankers to do the right thing with a minimum of supervision.
Here’s the brutal reality:
Ireland is a country where serious criminal activity is a common, integral and fully accepted part of the business and political systems.
The administration of the country is deliberately set up to cater for this criminal activity. It’s no accident that Oireachtas committees have no power whatsoever; it’s no accident that tribunals have no powers whatsoever; it’s no accident that agencies like the Financial Regulator operate under Soviet style secrecy laws, it’s no accident that agencies like the ODCE and are massively under-funded and under-staffed.
Politicians, civil servants and legal professionals all sat down at one time or another and made conscious decisions that that was the way things were going to be done.
That’s why we here at Public Inquiry can so easily predict the outcome of scandals. It was obvious from day one that Jim Flavin was never going to be brought to account and he never will be. Similarly, neither Sean Fitzpatrick nor the chancer Bertie Ahern will ever be brought to account.
Nothing will change at the Financial Regulator, a new regulator will be appointed and he will continue to do exactly what Patrick Neary did so faithfully for so many years – serve the interests of the financial institutions, even when they engage in criminal activity, at the expense of the Irish people and the good name of our country.
Joint Committee on Economic Regulatory Affairs