Monday, March 16, 2009

Tom Parlon, Director General of the Irish Construction Industry Federation, Former PD TD and Minister

With thanks to "Bigby" for collating many of these quotes)

The Right Hook Radio Show, 3 Jan 2008:

"Affordability is up 10% in the last 12 months."

(Translation: Prices are down 10% - CMcK)

Question and Answers, RTE, 7 Jan 2008:

"A 20% rise in rents proved that the demand was there for housing"

(When Matt Cooper mentioned that 1 in 6 houses is empty Tom Parlon started to talk across Matt Cooper and to interrupt systematically - CMcK)

Newstalk Breakfast Show, 11 Feb 2008:

"We're at, or very close to, the bottom now and it's turning around"

The Last Word with Matt Cooper, 11 Mar 2008:

"You'd get a good house in Dublin now for around €300k."

(Tom also dismissed the notion of 250,000 empties - CMcK)

RTE Drivetime, 17 Apr 2008:

"Our fundamentals are good."

Irish Examiner, 24 May 2008:

“A lot of buyers have been sitting on the fence for nine to 12 months, our message is now is the time to buy, there is real value out there"


"There are 1.8 million home owners in Ireland, [b]it isn’t in anyone’s interest to see house prices fall further[/b]. If negative sentiments were to disappear, people could see that there are very genuine reasons now to have confidence and buy"

The Last Word with Matt Cooper, 8 Oct 2008:

(In response to the International Monetary Fund saying that Irish house prices are most overvalued:)

"The IMF do not know what they're talking about"

Newstalk, 14 Oct 2008:

"Now we see value"

(Also repeated that he still thinks we need 40,000 homes a year.)

The Last Word with Matt Cooper, Nov 4 2008:

Tom Parlon claimed that he had never seen a ghost estate.

Morning Ireland - RTE Radio 1, 28 Jan 2009:

This one deserves the largest font:

"We [in the Construction Industry Federation] saw [the crash] coming"

Speech At the Opening of the Parnell Summer School, 17 August 2003:

"Any measure giving the State the power to control the value of private assets would have major negative ramifications for thousands of property owners and would be a jump back to the dark days of the 19th century [...] Such an approach is gift-wrapped in an ideology somewhere left of Stalin"

Irish Independent, 28 October 2010:

"[My Ministerial pension is] the only bit of a pension I have and I'd like to hold on to it for as long as I can"


The former minister is completely unapologetic about using his political connections to up the odds, proudly describing how he's approached several ministers personally, including former PD colleague Mary Harney.

"I'm in and out of the Dail every other day, any chance I get ... everybody does it"


"There is not a grain of evidence that NAMA is a bailout for developers. Everything they have is being taken over, they're losing everything they have."

Is he seriously defending people's rights to live in trophy homes they can no longer afford? Isn't that a bit of a stretch?

"Certainly there was a degree of reckless spending," he admits before launching into a fervent defence of all the good developers have done.


"We've been destroyed in the CIF, my salary has close enough to halved"

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