Big Money. The Public Robbed

An update to: Big Data. The Public Exploited


“An obligation of bank–client confidentiality in Ireland arises from the operation of the common law. The common law implies a duty of confidentiality on a bank in its relationship with its customer, unless the terms of the contract with the customer provide otherwise, or a bank is compelled by law to disclose. Obligations in relation to personal data also arise under the Data Protection Acts 1988 and 2003.” (Arthur Cox et al, 2014, The Banking Regulation Review)

Towards the end of January each debit card bank account will have €5 stolen from it and each credit card will have €30 stolen from it.  This has happened ritually each and every year from 2006.  Debit Stamp Duty is not a bank charge, it is a government charge, it is beyond a tax by stealth, it is robbery - and has been deemed illegal by the European Central Bank.

Who have we had in government since 2006 – Fianna Fail, Fine Gael, Green and Labour Parties!

This Debit Stamp Duty small as it may seem, is never declared by Revenue in its tax intake and never mentioned in government. Where also does the illegal money taken, vanish to?

Given that there are roughly 4 million bank accounts in use in Ireland (if not more) that would mean that at least €20 million has been taken each year since 2006.  So from 2006 to 2016 FF/FG (I don’t differentiate the two), Labour and Green Parties have taken €200 million.  This €200 million is never declared so, where does it go.  Any guesses it is into their pension funds or offshore accounts.  This €200 million is excluding the Debit Stamp Duty taken on Credit Cards which is 6 times the amount taken on Debit Cards.  So, the number could be as high as €3-400 million and up.

In 2015 Fine Gael and Labour most likely with the support of Fianna Fail introduced Civil Debt Law which is an law which will enable private companies access to your bank accounts as they will not imprison you for non-payment.  This law will mean bin companies, Irish Water, phone companies, internet providers et al can charge as much as they like and be sure they can get their money through this legislation.

It used to be that you had to give your bank explicit permission for direct debits and standing orders to be taken from your private bank accounts so as companies and individuals could access your private money.  This is not the case any more as the laws have been amended so the bank now has to disclose your bank details.  First they have been disclosed to the state through the Debit Stamp Duty which was enabled through the Finance Act 2005.  Soon, your private bank details and private assets could be disclosed to private companies which have been enabled to do this through the Civil Debt Law.

These laws are akin with the Dirigismo policies of Mussolini.  Dirigisme derives from the French word diriger, meaning “to direct”.  Dirigisme is an economic system where the state exerts a strong dictatorial influence over investment.  It designates a capitalist economy in which the state plays a strong dictatorial role, as opposed to a merely regulatory one.  It means also that corporate interests come first and individual rights to privacy and money are not recognised.

So, check your bank accounts’ statements for January 2016 and if you see Debit Stamp Duty there it means the government has access to your private bank account details which will now be passed onto private companies such as Irish Water, or the bank may disclose them.  But it is FF/FG, Labour and Green Parties and their dirigisme that have enabled these disclosures through their legislating this theft of money yearly from our bank accounts.

The money is due to be taken again at the end of January 2017.  Keep a close eye on your bank accounts.


Alistair Smith, UP  National Coordinator.



  • http://www.arthurcox.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/The-Banking-Regulation-Review-Fifth-Edition-Ireland-Chapter-June-2014.pdf
  • http://www.newstalk.com/ATM-withdraws-charges-tax-cash-withdrawals-ECB-banks
  • http://www.irishstatutebook.ie/eli/2015/act/28/enacted/en/html
  • https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dirigisme