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An Irish Government bailed out AIB before- in the 1980's when they bought an insurance company which turned out to have huge unquantified liabilities.  That left a very bad taste because AIB promptly upped dividends and top salaries etc. and the taxpayer got nothing.

I think ANY Irish Government would be v. uncomfortable with either AIB or BofI - the top two - being taken over by foreigners because there is a residual sense that they are committed to the Irish economy.

I think we may be coming close to the limits of what the Govt. would regard as a vital national interest and would be unwilling to defer to Brussels on.  Not sure what the legalities are, but collegial it ain't.

However there is also a sense that - e.g. the French would also act in their national interest if push came to shove - the difference is that smaller states are expected to be more deferential.

Vote McCain for war without gain

by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Thu Oct 2nd, 2008 at 04:51:45 PM EST
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Speaking of banks and dodgy insurers ... I was strolling through me comments earlier today when I came across this curiosity. Eh? says I (to myself). What a coincidence!  

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.
by Cat on Thu Oct 2nd, 2008 at 08:32:09 PM EST
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