Saturday 1 November 2014

'Incinerate Morgan Kelly' - the most shocking Anglo tape yet

Published 20/07/2014 | 02:30

Economist Morgan Kelly pictured in St. Canices Cathedral Kilkenny as part of the Kilkenny Arts festival.  Picture; GERRY MOONEY.   6/8/11
Economist Morgan Kelly

The UCD economist Morgan Kelly, who alone predicted the sheer scale of Ireland's economic crash, was the subject of a shocking and searing verbal onslaught by a senior Anglo banker and a leading Dublin stockbroker after he suggested the 
then government would be better off incinerating the billions of euro it was preparing to pump into Anglo Irish Bank.

The extraordinary attack, in which it is suggested someone should "incinerate" Professor Kelly, takes place in a phone conversation captured by the Anglo Tapes on Tuesday, December 23, 2008.

In an article published in that day's Irish Times, Mr Kelly had predicted correctly that the Government's proposed investment of €1.5bn in Anglo would "vaporise in months".

"For all it will achieve, the money might as well be piled up in St Stephen's Green and incinerated," the UCD economist wrote.

With the full cost of the then government's determination to support Anglo only becoming clear later on, Professor Kelly's predictions were to prove prophetic. With the UCD academic's vindication still some way off, the December 2008 phone call between the banker and his stockbroker friend unsurprisingly finds them displaying all the breathtaking arrogance we have come to associate with the former Anglo Irish Bank.

Clearly oblivious to the prospect that his bank will end up costing the taxpayer upwards of €28bn, the Anglo executive declares: "If you were to believe Morgan Kelly in the Times this morning, it would be better to incinerate the capital that the government is giving us than to . . . "

Agreeing with his friend, the stockbroker, who is still employed to this day at a prominent Dublin stockbrokers, quips sarcastically: "Incinerate Morgan Kelly! These guys, like it's just unbelievable, y'know."

Professor Kelly's chilling and accurate prediction elsewhere in his article clearly incensed the Anglo man.

After criticising the quality of Kelly's research into the Irish banks, he says: "Jaysus, it was unbelievable because here was a guy, who was, who was, using the Irish Times, using his platform as a professor in UCD, eh, to chip away confidence in the banking sector. And he hadn't done any research. He was just making wild pronouncements, y'know?"

"I mean, the amount of inaccurate reporting and sabotage is just frightening, y'know?" the stockbroker responds, adding: "It's frightening."

The Anglo man asks the sinister question as to why Kelly "hasn't been told".

Responding to this, the stockbroker exclaims how in other countries, "you'd have fellows like him up for treason", to which the man at Anglo suggests that ordinary citizens might take decisive action of their own.

"Ah, you would. In France now, y'know, basically you'd have cars speeding up as he crossed the road, y'know?" he jokes.

 

Ronald Quinlan

Sunday Independent

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