“I pay tribute to the ‘Farmers For No’ for coming together and calling for a No Vote…
…Contrary to popular belief and what the government is spouting, the sky won’t fall on our heads if we vote no on May 31st.
We will retain some flexibility and some ability to retain the control over our National finances and to be able to use those finances for the good of all the citizens of the country and not for the good of saving the financial institutions of Europe.”
- Thomas Pringle, TD (Member of Irish parliament)
“… And it is our contention that this Referendum should be an ICELANDIC TYPE REFERENDUM on BANK DEBT and that the Irish people in VOTING NO on May 31st – that NO Vote should be a MANDATE for this country to DEFAULT on the BANK DEBT that has forced us into an emergency programme involving the IMF in the first place.”
- James Reynolds, Chairman for FARMERS FOR NO. Press Conference in Dublin 10th May 2012.
The necessity for FARMERS FOR NO is because the main farmers organisations like the IFA and the ICMSA did not discuss or debate this issue, this very important issue that could impact on the future of this country’s freedom, the future of this country’s economy, and impact upon future farm families in this country and throughout Europe, and that this current issue has not.. I agree with Edna Kenny on one issue, this referendum is more important than a general election.. and yet there haven’t been public meetings for the farming community organised by the IFA or ICMSA, where people with a contrary view could put forward the case for a No Vote.
It was a rushed decision, rushed because people in the European Commission and the Agricultural Ministers office pushed the leadership of these two main organisations to come out strongly for a Yes Vote, and with a vague promise in return that they would get some concessions in relation to CAP reform post 2013.
As you’re aware, Simon Coveney takes over the presidency of the agricultural ministers of the EU from January 2013 and the motivation of the main organisations is more motivated by a desire to please the Minister than to actually put forward a proper case and obtain guarantees, cast iron guarantees in relation to the CAP budget post 2013, which is under threat by the ratification of the Fiscal Treaty.
Professor Alan Matthews who is an expert in European agricultural policies put a paper out, it was published in the December 15th edition of the Irish Examiner, in which he stated that a CAP budget is in peril if the Fiscal Compact is ratified, because the €700 Billion firewall fund that’s going to be established – supposedly established, to provide rescue funds for this country, Greece, Spain and other countries is an enormous fund – money is scarce in the EU at the moment, we’re in the middle of a European debt crisis and the CAP budget is worth annually €46 Billion which is a very attractive pot that the EU could dip into for the purposes of funding the ESM.
Also, austerity is killing demand in this country, it is destroying.. and not only do you have austerity in Ireland, you have austerity throughout Europe. We as a small Nation, and the agricultural community, export up to 90% of what we produce in terms of agricultural produce. We need export markets. Austerity is killing – is going to kill our export markets on the continent because if people are hungry, and I think one thing that must be highlighted here – I’ve seen on the News yesterday – we’re supposed to be good Europeans.. there are fellow Europeans, Greek citizens who are hungry and have to go to soup kitchens because of the condition that they’ve been brought to because of the policies of the EU in bailing out bondholders who gambled and instead of taking the loss that they deserved to take expect the Irish and European taxpayers to bail them out.. and the taxpayers of the poorest countries in Europe to bail them out. And I want to say one thing in relation to our case against the Fiscal Compact Treaty.. Because farmers have farm spouses, they have children going to college, many of them are lucky enough to have all-farming employment – So they are part of the wider economy, we are impacted by austerity, we are impacted by the threatened cuts that are going to happen if we ratify this fiscal treaty and there is a flaw – in my opinion a false debate going around centered upon what will happen if we say No on May 31st – In terms of the provision of emergency funding, ESM funding to this country when the current ESF funding which is overseen by the Troika runs out at the end of next year – And it is our contention that this referendum should be an Icelandic type referendum on bank debt and that the Irish people in voting No on May 31st – that No Vote should be a MANDATE for this country to DEFAULT on the BANK DEBT that has forced us into an emergency programme involving the IMF in the first place.
Colm McCarthy wrote on the 18th of March that it was the loading of the bank debt on top of the sovereign debt that pushed us, as he termed it, into the red zone. In other words we would be in a position today to sell Irish government bonds on the financial markets – today – were it not for the fact that the bank debt was loaded onto the sovereign debt.. and why are the Irish people being asked to accept austerity when the bankers, the European banks and the bondholders are not prepared to accept austerity? Why is it a situation where Greece, and rightfully so, got a 50% write-down in their bank debt and we received no write-down on our bank debt – and yet the government and the people on the Yes side are trying to scaremonger the Irish public into a situation where they would be herded like sheep into voting yes for something that is not in their best interest. – James Reynolds, FARMERS FOR NO
Video of Full Press Conference:
‘Farmers for No’ to EU Fiscal Compact Treaty 10-5-2012 (Video by PlanxtySumoud)