Tuesday, 30 November 2010

The Irish Troubles

It is a slow day in a damp little Irish town. The rain is beating down and the streets are deserted. Times are tough, everybody is in debt, and everybody lives on credit. On this particular day a wealthy German tourist is driving through the town, stopped at the local hotel and placed a €100 note on the desk, telling the hotel owner he wants to inspect the rooms upstairs in order to pick one to spend the night. The owner gives him some keys and, as soon as the visitor has walked upstairs, the hotelier grabs the €100 note and runs next door to pay his debt to the butcher. The butcher takes the €100 note and runs down the street to repay his debt to the pig farmer. 

The pig farmer took that €100 note and cycled over to pay his bill at the feed Co-op. The Co-op guy nipped out, donning his cap to pay his 100 bar tab at the pub. The publican immediately slipped the money along the bar to the local prostitute as she had also been facing hard times providing "services" on credit. 

The hooker then rushed to the hotel and paid off her room bill to the hotel owner with the €100 note. The hotel proprietor then placed the €100 note back on the counter to the wealthy traveller hoping that he wouldn't suspect anything. At that moment the traveller comes down the stairs, picks up the €100 note, states that the rooms are not satisfactory, pockets the money, and leaves town. 

No one produced anything. No one earned anything. However, the whole town is now out of debt and looking to the future with a lot more optimism. 

And that, ladies and gentlemen, is how the bailout package works.