Those Were the Days, Wha? Jerry Beades’ Old Ways Given a New [Land League] Gloss

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I would like to point out that one does not need a long memory to recall when Mr De Rossa and Mr Rabbitte were constantly using the media to get their socialist message across to the masses.

Jerry Beades 1996

Like a lot of people, I try and avoid reading news stories that have all the hallmarks of absurdity. As these stories grow, boosted by some invisible force they annoy me more because they prove difficult to ignore. You find that you have the gist of what is going on without even trying. Work colleagues discuss them in your presence, people waiting in supermarket queues rattle through the reported facts, and even sometimes, curiosity gets the better of you and in a bored moment you click a link to a seductive news headline and scan the article’s salacious content.

Then the deed is done. You’ve gone deeper than you ever indended. The mind recoils at the avoidance of facts contained in it and the framing of the story to justify the attention given to something that deserves none.

The example I am talking about is this Irish Times story about the ‘repossession‘ and Jerry Beades role in it.

New Land League press conference yesterday. Photo courtesy of the Irish Times

New Land League press conference yesterday. Photo courtesy of the Irish Times

Jerry is the leader of the New Land League, the report informs us, and he is supporting developer and solicitor Brian O’Donnell avoid repossession of his Dalkey mansion, which Beades referred to on the Tonight with Vincent Browne show last night as ‘bog standard’ (although it is not clear if he is referring to the quality of mansions or all dwellings). They plan to bring the case to the European Court of Justice.

The article doesn’t mention anything of Jerry Beades background, although it is not hard to find information. An earlier Irish Times article dedicated to the New Land League only mentions the following:

“Mr Beades is a former member of Fianna Fáil’s Ard Chomhairle and was a close associate of Bertie Ahern when the former taoiseach was active in politics. Mr Beades was himself challenging Ulster Bank at the time over loans the bank valued at €3.5 million.”

However, you could fill a very colourful profile piece quickly enough on who Jerry Beade is, and why it is not worth spending any time considering the travails of wealthy and influencial people.

Sometimes though, it’s good to know the cut of people, particularly when they are given far too much uncritical attention in the Irish media. Below is a letter to the Irish Times from Jerry Beades which the paper published in 1996. In the letter we can see the outlining of the importance of tax cuts for lower incomes, the bedrock of Fianna Fail’s social partnership model and was a smoke screen for the real tax cuts for those on the higest incomes. It also exacerbated the weakness of a tax system that relied too much on stamp duty up to 2008.

‘Sir, – Having listened and read over the past few days to Democratic Left complaining about the Budget submissions made by the various bodies representing business and industry, who called for reductions in income tax on the low paid worker to help increase employment, I would like to point out that one does not need a long memory to recall when Mr De Rossa and Mr Rabbitte were constantly using the media to get their socialist message across to the masses. Now that the shoe is on the other foot and the heat in the kitchen is getting too hot for them, they appear to be crying wolf.

These are the people who have it in their power to reduce taxes on the employed, particularly the lower income groups whom they represent. But it would appear that they would prefer to increase social welfare payments instead of using the current surplus of money to decrease the taxes which deter employment.

While the economy is growing, unemployment has increased and this only goes to hammer home the point that a tax on employment is definitely a disincentive to employers to increase their workforce. It is far cheaper to spend capital on equipment which will reduce employment numbers.

Let’s hope that by the time Democratic Left is finished playing around with the economy, we still have an economy left for any future incoming administration to tackle the taxation system, and make it more profitable to work than remain unemployed.
Yours, etc.,

Jerry Beades
Pro Master Builder’s and Contractor’s Association,
Richmond Avenue,
Dublin 3.’

January 18, 1996, Irish Times

There is also an revealing article from the Sunday Tribune published on the 5th of August 2004. which shows long established framework of the New Land League in action long before the events in Dalkey in the last week.

A SENIOR member of Fianna Fail’s governing body has become embroiled in claims of planning corruption and is facing the threat of jail over his continued use of an illegal site.

Complaints have now been made by two senior FF colleagues against Jerry  Beades, a wealthy Dublin builder and member of the FF national executive.

Beades has been threatened with imprisonment over his refusal to vacate the Jamestown Road site in Dublin after being found to be operating the facility without planning permission.

The move follows complaints from minister of state Noel Ahern and FF deputy Pat Carey. Both ministers issued strongly-worded complaints to Fingal Council that Beades was in violation of planning law and was operating an illegal facility.

It is understood that Beades will vigorously contest the case. Sources close to the Fairview-based businessman said he could not comment on the current case until a connected hearing into allegations of planning corruption made by him against Dublin City Council officials are concluded in the High Court.

Beades claims he has been the subject of unfair treatment by Fingal County Council. He maintains the site is exempt from planning permission as a temporary concrete plant, under the 2000 Planning Act, providing material for adjoining development.

However, Carey said he was strongly opposed to Beades’ operation of the site.

“It is in breach of planning law and is not acceptable on any level, ” he told the Sunday Tribune.

He added: “there is a matter of legal principle that applies irrespective of whoever you are or whatever position you hold.” The council brought a case against Beades in 2002 following verbal and written complaints by TDs and several locals.’

The Sunday Tribune, August 5, 2004

Thanks to the person who passed these on to me.