Bono wishes us proles a happy fuck you
Bono wishes us proles a happy fuck you

Forget about the sense of aristocratic entitlement that apparently pervaded the membership of Ireland’s financial corporations. The heads of the Anglo-Irish Bank laughed at the indentured servitude they had so craftily bestowed on the Irish people? So what. Here is what the real sense of entitlement cultivated by Ireland’s 1% sounds like. Gay Byrne interviewing Bono, lead singer and accountancy expert with U2, on RTÉ last night (via the Broadsheet):

Gay Byrne: If I don’t ask you this, I’ll be criticised and if I do ask you this I’ll be criticised but since you’ve touched on the subject now. The subject of U2′s taxation arrangements, whereby people are expressing their wonder at what they call your hypocrisy, not my word, their word, hypocrisy of haranguing us all and asking us to pay for more international aid, at the same time as you shift your company overseas in order to save taxation.

Bono: Yeah, but it’s [unintelligible] of Irish people to be critical of this is because the shock horror moment here is U2 behaving like a business. [fake shock facial and gasp expression]. And I mean our, we live in a small rock in the North Atlantic and we would be under water were it not for very clever people working in Government and in the Revenue who made tax competitiveness a central part of Irish economic life.

It is the reason we have companies like, you know, Google and Facebook and, indeed, I helped bring those companies to Ireland. So it’s more than churlish for Irish people to say well we don’t want an Irish company involved in that stuff that we do want everyone else.”

Jesus wept…

UPDATE 27/06/2013:  Thanks to An Lorcánach for this link to a review of Harry Browne’s highly critical new bio of Bono featured in the Guardian. And here is Browne himself discussing Bono’s faith and politics over on CounterPunch, with thanks to Pól for the tip. Finally Méabh in New York sent me this link to a feature on a recent TV interview with the evangelical one.

8 comments on “The Double Bono

  1. an lorcánach

    bono’s unique anthropological reasoning for “irish begrudgery” = a confusion of greed/envy with favouritism/corruption — peadar


  2. an lorcánach

    By Anglo-Irish academic Terry Eagleton: “As a multimillionaire investor, world-class tax avoider, pal of Bush and Blair and crony of the bankers and neo-cons, Bono has lent credence to the global forces that wreak much of the havoc he is eager to mop up. His technocratic, west-centred, corporation-friendly campaigns have driven him into one false solution, unsavoury alliance and embarrassing debacle after another. The poor for him, Browne claims, exist largely as objects of the west’s charity. They are not seen as capable of the kind of militant mobilisation that might threaten western interests.” — review of Harry Browne’s ‘The Frontman : Bono (In the Name of Power)’ — from Guardian website,


  3. ceannaire1

    Bono – U2 – Irish = an oxymoron, if ever I heard one. Thanks Mr. Bono. Now slide on, thank you. Slán go foill.


    • The paradox of Ireland’s elites: socially liberal, economically conservative. In other respects Bono’s pronouncements remind me of none other than Mitt Romney. The arrogance of the entitled.


  4. To put that fawning idiot on a programme with that other fawning expert, gay byrne, is cruel on anyone who has a weak stomach. Two people who are engrossed in their own inflated self-importance. I could never understand how the Irish people took to them.
    Bono exploited his’ Irishness’ when it suited him in his early days’ when any young irish kid wouldve been giving a chance by the irish american community in the US. The scariest/saddest thing i have learnt recently is that young people are being taught in some schools’ i know, that he is some kind of modern day messiah/holy man!


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