Few people can imagine what €4,000million looks like, but that is just what Sean Quinn lost through gambling on the casino they call the stockmarket. As a result of this grotesque speculation and lust for profits, thousands of honest workers directly employed by the Quinn Group are to lose their jobs, not to mention the thousands of other workers whose jobs are dependent on the Quinn Group.
Sean Quinn lost this sum speculating that the depressed price of Anglo-Irish Bank shares would recover. However, he did not gamble by buying shares but by buying ‘Contracts for Difference’ (CFDs) amounting to 25% of the bank’s shares. Such a highly leveraged strategy can yield massive returns but if things go wrong the losses can be just as great.
The News of the World’s illegal phone hacking scandal and the pernicious role of Rupert Murdoch’s News International has erupted into life again. A recent New York Times' investigation interviewed more than a dozen former NoW reporters and editors who "described a frantic, sometimes degrading atmosphere in which some reporters openly pursued hacking or other improper tactics to satisfy demanding editors".
The concerted might of the strongest and largest military force in the world, that of the US, is failing to defeat the disparate and crudely equipped Taliban militias in one of the poorest countries of the world.
This is despite the US leading a force of nearly 120,000 troops fighting an estimated 28,000 Taliban, and having spent a phenomenal £190 billion over the nine years of the war so far.
Anti-water charges campaigners reacted to yesterday’s announcement from the Northern Ireland Executive that water charges are to be deferred for another year by calling for water charges to be scrapped rather than delayed.
Gary Mulcahy, speaking on behalf of the We Won’t Pay Campaign explained “It is disappointing that the NI Executive has only announced the deferral of water charges. This means that water bills will be sent to people’s homes in April 2010. People are already struggling to pay the bills with soaring increases in energy costs. Another bill in the form of water charges is not acceptable, especially since we already pay for water through our rates.