Eircom shareholders are speculators, not investors

“Nothing so undermines your judgement as the sight of your neighbour getting rich,” wrote JP Morgan in 1905. As I write, a telecom company is digging up the street outside the window, laying cables, promising me the world from my living room in a matter of months. The gouging out of Ireland’s road network is happening in every town and has been for the past six months at least.

Raise your glasses to more inflation and higher wages

This year’s Christmas message is that most of you are being ripped off. Difficult to accept but there you go. Despite the wage increases announced to keep the PPF together, Irish workers are selling themselves far too cheaply when compared to their continental neighbours. In doing so, workers are subsidising owners of capital, particularly foreign owners of capital employed in Ireland.

Envious east will take its piece of European action

‘I’m sorry Mr Mec Villiams, but without a visa you can’t enter Yugoslavia.” There was a pause as he surveyed the empty hall. Then he continued in fluent English: “However, as there are no more flights out this evening, you might be able to stay here.”

This borrowing binge is blowing our bubble

News footage from Britain in 1987 shows champagne-swilling Hooray Henrys corking Bolly in celebration of Nigel Lawson’s tax-cutting budget. For many, this landmark budget was the culmination of Mrs Thatcher’s revolution and the high point of Lawson’s career.

Working suburbs will turn cities inside out

In 1987, Steve Martin and John Candy starred in a movie about two all-American Dads desperately trying to get home for Thanksgiving. Planes Trains and Automobiles went on (rather inexplicably) to be one of the biggest films of the year with an “it could happen to you” message in the varied transport disasters befalling two unlikely bedfellows on a filthy late November night.