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Black Thursday: home reaction

The national newspapers react to the cost of the banking bailout.

ANGER IS PALPABLE in the papers today, with all analysing the consequences of “Black Thursday”, after it emerged yesterday that the eventual costs of the banking bailout could reach €50bn.

The massive bill for the bailout will mean savage cuts and tax hikes, says the Irish Examiner. The paper outlines that the previous €3bn cuts expected in the upcoming budget will now not be enough – and that the extra €1bn needed will cost each citizen an extra €250. A further €3.7bn will be shaved off the national pensions reserve fund to save AIB, it adds.

Meanwhile, the opposition are calling for details of the government’s four year budget plan to be revealed, saying that otherwise the government cannot count on cross-party support  for the plan, reports the Irish Times. The paper also breaks down the amount of money that will go the Anglo, AIB, Bank of Ireland, Irish Nationwide and EBS.

The Times also gives details of the public opinion regarding the next leader of the country. If there was a change in leadership in Fianna Fáil, the current Finance minister Brian Lenihan is the favourite  to succeed Brian Cowen. Eamon Gilmore is the favourite for the Labour party, as is Enda Kenny for Fine Gael.  Of the 1,000 people asked, 29% responded that Brian Cowen should remain on as Taoiseach after the next election.

The Irish Independent leads with how Brian Lenihan will have to outline details of his “Super Budget” €7bn, and the four year plan for cuts and taxes.

The detailed plan is intended to promote confidence in the international market about Ireland’s ability to handle its spiraling costs.

Meanwhile, “Ireland RIP” is the leading headline in the Irish Daily Star, which says the country will face “decades of financial hell” because of “greedy bankers and gormless politicians”.

The Irish Daily Mail lead with the headline “€34 Billion Closer to the Abyss”, and accuses the state of betraying the taxpayer by bailing out “greedy, irresponsible” banks.

The paper also questioned the severity of the charges brought against the so-called “Anglo Avenger”, 41-year-old Joe McNamara, yesterday. McNamara was held overnight and charged with criminal damage after a truck was driven into the gates of Leinster House on Wednesday. However, the paper points out that the damage to the gates was minimal.

The Sun calls for “rogue bankers” Sean Fitzgerald and Michael Fingleton to be tried for treason, calculating that the bill for the rectifying their mistakes will cost €40bn – or €10,000 for each man, woman, and child in Ireland.

The Irish Daily Mirror, which leads the headline “Greedy, Rotten Liars”, believes the eventual cost of bailing out the banks will be closer to €50bn, adding that the effort will leave Ireland on the brink of bankruptcy.

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