Ship of Fools: How Corruption and Stupidity Killed the Celtic Tiger

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9780571252688: Ship of Fools: How Corruption and Stupidity Killed the Celtic Tiger
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Between 1995 and 2007, the Republic of Ireland was the worldwide model of successful adaptation to economic globalisation. The success story was phenomenal: a doubling of the workforce; a massive growth in exports; a GDP that was substantially above the EU average. Ireland became the world's largest exporter of software and manufactured the world's supply of Viagra. The factors that made it possible for Ireland to become prosperous - progressive social change, solidarity, major State investment in education, and the critical role of the EU - were largely ignored as too sharply at odds with the dominant free market ideology. The Irish boom was shaped instead into a simplistic moral tale of the little country that discovered low taxes and small government and prospered as a result. There were two big problems. Ireland acquired a hyper-capitalist economy on the back of a corrupt, dysfunctional political system. And the business class saw the influx of wealth as an opportunity to make money out of property. Aided by corrupt planning and funded by poorly regulated banks, an unsustainable property-led boom gradually consumed the Celtic Tiger. This is, as Fintan O'Toole writes, 'a good old-fashioned jeremiad about the bastards who got us into this mess'. It is an entertaining, passionate story of one of the most ignominious economic reversals in recent history.

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About the Author:

Fintan O'Toole is a historian, critic and newspaper columnist, of whom Roddy Doyle has said 'he is not just an important writer, he is a vital one'. Andrew O'Hagan once described him as 'Ireland's most interesting journalist', and Roy Foster has said: 'I read everything that Fintan O'Toole writes'.

Review:

Brian Groom, Financial Times
“O’Toole ... has produced a coruscating polemic against the cronyism and corruption that in his view helped to fuel the boom.... [H]is highly readable book is a salutary reminder that cronyism, light regulation and loose ethics can be a deadly combination.”

Cleveland Plain Dealer“An interesting and readable post-mortem.... Ship of Fools is not just for those drawn to Irish politics or economics. Americans, in particular, will relate to Ireland's battle to restore its economy and renew faith in its leaders.”

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Other Popular Editions of the Same Title

9781586488819: Ship of Fools: How Stupidity and Corruption Sank the Celtic Tiger

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ISBN 10:  1586488813 ISBN 13:  9781586488819
Publisher: PublicAffairs, 2010
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9780571260751: Ship of Fools: How Stupidity and Corruption Sank the Celtic Tiger

FABER ..., 2010
Softcover

9781458758590: Ship of Fools: How Stupidity and Corruption Sank the Celtic Tiger

ReadHo..., 2013
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