End of an Erin: Pub closing along Collier Boulevard will auction items Tuesday

Roger LaLonde Staff
After nearly 30 years, Erin's Isle Irish Pub is closing. The Absolute Auction begins at 11 a.m. on Tuesday at the Restaurant.

Photo by ROGER LALONDE // Buy this photo

Roger LaLonde Staff After nearly 30 years, Erin's Isle Irish Pub is closing. The Absolute Auction begins at 11 a.m. on Tuesday at the Restaurant.

Video from NBC-2

It's over for owner Mike Ward and Erin's Isle Irish Pub.

"I really don't have any options, I'm setting up for an auction on Tuesday," he said Friday.

Ward has leased the property for nearly 30 years, but when it was sold in May when he was told he had to vacate the property because it was being demolished in mid-June.

The date went by for demolition, but the closing of the restaurant, 6190 Collier Blvd., was only delayed.

"Everything goes," Ward said. "It's a shame because I probably won't get more than 10 cents on a dollar."

He expects the auction will bring $25,000 to $35,000.

Beginning at 11 a.m. Tuesday, at Erin's Isle, Toby Neverett Auctioneers will auction off all furniture, fixtures and equipment, along with equipment Ward used for a catering business.

James Noon, a Naples attorney representing the seller, Laupco, Inc., said there had been recent discussions between Ward and Laupco, but classified them as confidential. He did say: "All disputes were resolved. No one is happy when you have to move, but I think Mike was happy and had an opportunity for another location."

At this point Ward does not seem inclined to start over.

"I've looked at locations, but that's a big thing financially," Ward said. "The bottom line is I am 65 years old and maybe it's time to hang it up. I had hoped for a continuance on the lease, but it didn't happen."

Ward had leased the property since May 1983 as Ward Services. It was a 20-year lease with Laupco, with two seven-year options. Ward took advantage of the first option in 2003. He attempted to do the same in 2010, but Laupco did not sign off.

Property next to Erin's Isle, with a Texaco gas station, a vegetable store and an area used for Erin's Isle parking, has also been sold. Both properties, Laupco and TCL, have Leroy A. Laupert of Naples on Collier County ownership records. Moon said Laupert is a managing partner.

Moon, also represents, TCL, which has no plans for that property. All he would say is, "Texaco is not closing."

Rumors that Race Trac is interested in buying both properties for a major facility have not been confirmed.

There will be no farewell party for Ward and Erin's Isle. All restaurant items are being gathered and itemized for the auction.

To see a listing of items for auction, go to www.neverettauctions.com

© 2012 Naples Daily News. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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Comments » 53

just_makin_it writes:

This really sucks! Had some good memories there, and I was ALWAYS the youngest person in the restaurant! Good luck to the owner and all the staff, you'll be missed!

Carrot_Stick writes:

Leroy Laupert....another greedy republican that does not care about people, but only cares for himself.

Another fine example of big-money takeover of small, local businesses. I'm sorry for Mike Ward and hope for the best.

But hey, this is capitalism so we call it progress.

Max_Headroom writes:

Never went there.

A re-post of Irish cooking 101:

Get a big pot
Fill with water.
put on stove to boil.
Add spices.
Add potatoes.
Add carrots.
Add cabbage.
Add LOW QUALITY hunk of meat.
Boil for 15 hours or until you can eat it with a straw.
Enjoy.

MisterK writes:

My Erin's Isle calendar is good for another 6 months. Thanks for the wonderful memories Mr. Ward. And, thanks to our favorite waiter, Dan. May the luck of the Irish be with you all.

MisterK writes:

in response to Carrot_Stick:

Leroy Laupert....another greedy republican that does not care about people, but only cares for himself.

Another fine example of big-money takeover of small, local businesses. I'm sorry for Mike Ward and hope for the best.

But hey, this is capitalism so we call it progress.

I don't know, but I don't think it's political. It's just business.My grandpa used to say, "you can't stop progress".

suzaunt writes:

Mr. Ward has been a good citizen and has contributed much to the community. Best of luck to all the folks at Erin Isles.

romneygate writes:

This is a loss for the community, politics or not. You could always get a good meal there and enjoy a little middle class ambiance with the experience. Maybe some bank will put a branch office there to service the trickle down economy?

As for Irish cooking. It was a lot better use of the "pot" than some cannibal critics engage in creating their cuisine.

queen writes:

Good luck to Mike and all the staff,also Bob Gideons who played his piano there for years.
My husband and I always loved going there.

TheyPavedParadise2 writes:

This is exactly why Donna Fiala doesn't understand her job. Businesses in her district are disappearing because of the cost of permitting and fees, etc. Mike would have to spend a small fortune in impact fees to reopen in another location. Add to that the fire inspection, and all sorts of miscellaneous crap. Businesses will continue to close or leave until Fiala, Coletta and Coyle are replaced with people who know what to do to fix the problem.

babyblue writes:

dont know how that place ever passed inspection, it was filthy

Naplesishome writes:

in response to Carrot_Stick:

Leroy Laupert....another greedy republican that does not care about people, but only cares for himself.

Another fine example of big-money takeover of small, local businesses. I'm sorry for Mike Ward and hope for the best.

But hey, this is capitalism so we call it progress.

I'm trying to understand your view on greed. The property owner bought the property years ago. He signed a lease with a tenant and honored that lease for thirty years. When the contract term expired, he asked for market rent, but the tenant either wouldn't or couldn't afford it. The property owner wishes to realize the current value of his property, but cannot with the existing tenant. In your world, the property owner should just "deal with it" or continue as a charitable organization? So, if you leased your car to somebody for $100/mo for two years and at the end of the lease somebody else offered you $200/mo would you (a) continue to lease the car for $100/mo to the original lessee or be (b) take the $200/mo rental? Hmmm. Let me guess. Gotta love socialists. What's theirs is theirs and what's mine is theirs too....

CapecodJ writes:

The people of Naples have lost more than an Irish Pub.
Mike Ward is the most generous man I know. Had he not given so much of himself, he could have retired long ago a rich man,but Mike had a deep concern and desire to give of himself.
When there was a need for help, Mike was the first to offer. Countless numbers of charities and people have benefited from his efforts, all done under the radar with no recoginition of Mike's good works.
In this respect, Erins Isle was more than a restaurant.... it was a vehicle to support the community.
Thanks, Mike. I hope some day people understand and appreciate all you have done.

OP writes:

The owner says he is too old, (at only 65), so this forced retirement must be in some ways a blessing for this decrepit old man. It must be hard to admit that you are past your working age, so, his regret is understandable as well. Now he fades out of view to live off that generous Social Security everyone is supposed to bank on having. He never made that business anyway, someone else did that for him, and now someone else will send him a monthly check.

romneygate writes:

in response to Naplesishome:

I'm trying to understand your view on greed. The property owner bought the property years ago. He signed a lease with a tenant and honored that lease for thirty years. When the contract term expired, he asked for market rent, but the tenant either wouldn't or couldn't afford it. The property owner wishes to realize the current value of his property, but cannot with the existing tenant. In your world, the property owner should just "deal with it" or continue as a charitable organization? So, if you leased your car to somebody for $100/mo for two years and at the end of the lease somebody else offered you $200/mo would you (a) continue to lease the car for $100/mo to the original lessee or be (b) take the $200/mo rental? Hmmm. Let me guess. Gotta love socialists. What's theirs is theirs and what's mine is theirs too....

Is that what happened here? Did the tenant have an option to renew at "market" price? Sounds like the owner might be one of your "socialists" with a mine is mine mindset?

cornandbeans writes:

Poor Donna Fiala. Where is she going to go to get all those free tax payer paid lunches?

She might have to get married a fourth time to have someone support her eating habits.

romneygate writes:

in response to OP:

The owner says he is too old, (at only 65), so this forced retirement must be in some ways a blessing for this decrepit old man. It must be hard to admit that you are past your working age, so, his regret is understandable as well. Now he fades out of view to live off that generous Social Security everyone is supposed to bank on having. He never made that business anyway, someone else did that for him, and now someone else will send him a monthly check.

Thank God for that "generous Social Security" that the 1% tax payers are providing, right? (NOT) And at "only 65", why isn't he trying out for the Olympics, right? Maybe he can participate in some of the shooting/gun events, right? His customers and employees help make his business, and even his landlord to an extent, until the landlord "advanced" his thinking, right?

Naplesishome writes:

in response to romneygate:

Is that what happened here? Did the tenant have an option to renew at "market" price? Sounds like the owner might be one of your "socialists" with a mine is mine mindset?

Based on the text (as reported) the answer seems pretty straightforward. The tenant had a contract right (an option to renew the lease) that he did not (or could not) exercise. If the owner had reneged on the contract right, there would be a lawsuit and damages. If the tenant couldn't afford market rent, then its the owners right to move on. That's why we have contracts and courts to enforce them. The owner is acting like a capitalist, not a socialist, and prior to the current commander-in-chief, that used to be considered a compliment. People generally buy investment properties to make a profit. The Mercato was not developed to enrich the shareholders of Chipotle via below-market rents in perpetuity. It was developed to enrich its developers...that how the system works. Why should the landlord in this situation be held to any other standard?

Please help me find the beacon of economic success that justifies your economic philosophy...let's see...Portugal, Greece, Spain...Fantasy Island?

OP writes:

in response to romneygate:

Thank God for that "generous Social Security" that the 1% tax payers are providing, right? (NOT) And at "only 65", why isn't he trying out for the Olympics, right? Maybe he can participate in some of the shooting/gun events, right? His customers and employees help make his business, and even his landlord to an extent, until the landlord "advanced" his thinking, right?

So, and what a surprise, you agree with everything I said. Woo Hoo! I am grateful that I finally got through to you and that you now embrace the common sense so many of us have been sharing with you.

SMILES writes:

I don't understand the rude comments here about the property owner, the restaurant owner & Donna Fiala.

I never had a bad meal there & have been going for many many years & was a favorite of my parents, now deceased for 16 years.

Best rack of lamb in the county.

I'm sorry they are closing. I have recommended them many times & those who went were happy.

I don't believe Donna had a thing to do with the closing & I know she fights for everything good for the area. I support her & feel she does an excellent job. I did not agree with her regarding the Jackson Labs fiasco & was verbal about that fraud in the making. However, that is past & we lucked out.

It's too bad the employees will lose their jobs. Anyone who thinks they served only Irish food, missed out on a really nice menu.

Wishing you all well & enjoyment in your retirement.

Naplesishome writes:

You apparently prefer a world where people whom you deem worthy are given things for free. On Fantasy Island (and to some extent Obama's America) this can happen. Problem is, somewhere along the line, somebody has to be motivated to produce the "free stuff" for everybody else.

Thirty years ago, Mr. Ward apparently didn't have enough money to buy the property. The landlord did. The landlord made an investment and conferred the property to Mr. Ward under lease. Had the landlord not bought the property way back when, Mr. Ward may never have had a place to start his business. Had the landlord attempted to break the contract prematurely, Mr. Ward would have had a lawsuit. None of this occurred. The business owner either can't (or won't) pay the contractual rent, so he has to move on. That's how it used to be with mortgages too! Back in the old days, you borrowed money from a bank, bought a house, paid the bank back, and then owned the house free-and-clear. Today it seems perfectly acceptable to buy more house than you can afford, stop paying the bank, then cry and moan about the unfairness of the world and the greedy corporations and bankers that refuse to confer the home to you for free. Makes me want to puke.

Naplesishome writes:

P.S. the above is a response to Romneygate, not the kind comments of SMILES...

TheyPavedParadise2 writes:

in response to SMILES:

I don't understand the rude comments here about the property owner, the restaurant owner & Donna Fiala.

I never had a bad meal there & have been going for many many years & was a favorite of my parents, now deceased for 16 years.

Best rack of lamb in the county.

I'm sorry they are closing. I have recommended them many times & those who went were happy.

I don't believe Donna had a thing to do with the closing & I know she fights for everything good for the area. I support her & feel she does an excellent job. I did not agree with her regarding the Jackson Labs fiasco & was verbal about that fraud in the making. However, that is past & we lucked out.

It's too bad the employees will lose their jobs. Anyone who thinks they served only Irish food, missed out on a really nice menu.

Wishing you all well & enjoyment in your retirement.

You totally missed the point. I like Donna. It isn't good enough anymore to be nice and fight for everything good. That is expected and is part of a commissioners job. However, we need a new group of commissioners with some actual business experience. Jackson Labs showed us all that this group (4 of them) were not business savvy enough to see the pig in the poke.
The impact fees for a restaurant just in a strip center can run as much as $70,000.
The new shopping centers in the estates will pay $4 million in impact fees.
Donna had nothing to do with the closing you are correct.
She is a policy maker in a county that is losing businesses rapidly and the unemployment just went up one percentage point.
We don't need a lame duck, we need new ideas.

livinginnaples writes:

Good luck Mike, we always enjoyed our times at Erins Isle. Probably had a few more drinks than dinners, but enjoyed it all the same.

dab writes:

in response to Naplesishome:

You apparently prefer a world where people whom you deem worthy are given things for free. On Fantasy Island (and to some extent Obama's America) this can happen. Problem is, somewhere along the line, somebody has to be motivated to produce the "free stuff" for everybody else.

Thirty years ago, Mr. Ward apparently didn't have enough money to buy the property. The landlord did. The landlord made an investment and conferred the property to Mr. Ward under lease. Had the landlord not bought the property way back when, Mr. Ward may never have had a place to start his business. Had the landlord attempted to break the contract prematurely, Mr. Ward would have had a lawsuit. None of this occurred. The business owner either can't (or won't) pay the contractual rent, so he has to move on. That's how it used to be with mortgages too! Back in the old days, you borrowed money from a bank, bought a house, paid the bank back, and then owned the house free-and-clear. Today it seems perfectly acceptable to buy more house than you can afford, stop paying the bank, then cry and moan about the unfairness of the world and the greedy corporations and bankers that refuse to confer the home to you for free. Makes me want to puke.

Of course you're right, but don't bother trying to explain the basics of business or capitalism to a liberal. The "business molecule" area of their brains is simply incapable of processing the logical thought behind them.

westiegirl writes:

I wish Mike Ward the very best in whatever he decides to do now. I feel for the Staff of Erin's Isle - many of them have worked there for a majority of the 29 years the restaurant was there. The price we pay for progress is the loss of jobs? It appears that one person (the property owner) will benefit and dozens will be signing up for unemployment. Heartwarming story...

Naplesishome writes:

Ohh Bobby...you make this too easy. Mr. Obama would have you believe that the government, like the tooth fairy, brings goodness to all little boys and girls who believe accordingly. So, Robin HObama wants to take more from those who did and give to those who didn't so that more fairies (literal and figurative) can descend from the sky spreading goodness.

In the real world, somebody worked for the money to buy the property. That person, not the government, made an investment in an income producing asset. He then leased that asset to an entrepreneur who started a business. That business served customers and employed employees without the intervention of the good 'ole government for some thirty years.

It really comes down which you believe is the better capital allocator: the private sector or the government. While the private sector is hardly perfect, the government is reliably incompetent when it comes to entrepreneurship. This reason is not surprising... Private sector companies require profits to survive; the government need not worry about details like profitability since it can simply borrow more free stuff from the Fed, raise taxes or do both.

GWW writes:

It is good to see them close, not a good place. From a to z a bad place to have a drink and eat.

GWW writes:

The owner of the pub was a mean and nasty phony person, the woman who worked the front door on Fridays was very rude and nasty. The bartenders except for one were terrible. I am happy they're closing! I can see all his butt kissers that I used to see in the bar are on here stating their phony posts. The place was truly terrible and so so glad they're gone. Good riddance.

FreshFace writes:

it was my landmark to know I was nearing Marco as a little girl (back then didn't live down here...only vacations). It will be missed.

Naplesishome writes:

in response to westiegirl:

I wish Mike Ward the very best in whatever he decides to do now. I feel for the Staff of Erin's Isle - many of them have worked there for a majority of the 29 years the restaurant was there. The price we pay for progress is the loss of jobs? It appears that one person (the property owner) will benefit and dozens will be signing up for unemployment. Heartwarming story...

westie - for better or worse, embedded in our system is the concept of creative destruction. Your presumption that this is a zero sum game with all benefits accruing to the property owner is incorrect. First, we don't know what will happen to the location. It seems unlikely in the extreme that the owner will simply tear down the building and leave an empty space; he would simply deprive himself of rental income for no constructive purpose.

It is possible, albeit probable, that there is some development plan and that the plans include new physical plant and a different business. Construction jobs, from demolition through build-out will be created. Impact fees will flow to the county providing incremental revenue that on the margin reduces the tax burden on everyone. Oh yeah, and then the new business will eventually come online, potentially creating more jobs then existed at Erin's.

No one should lack compassion for Mr. Ward or his displaced employees. But the economic circle of life does not stop with the closure of Erin's.

seaguy writes:

why the hell did he not buy the bld.20 years ago the bld was not worth $500.00

romneygate writes:

in response to CapecodJ:

The people of Naples have lost more than an Irish Pub.
Mike Ward is the most generous man I know. Had he not given so much of himself, he could have retired long ago a rich man,but Mike had a deep concern and desire to give of himself.
When there was a need for help, Mike was the first to offer. Countless numbers of charities and people have benefited from his efforts, all done under the radar with no recoginition of Mike's good works.
In this respect, Erins Isle was more than a restaurant.... it was a vehicle to support the community.
Thanks, Mike. I hope some day people understand and appreciate all you have done.

Kudos!

Naplesishome writes:

in response to Ludwig:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

BobbyD - We are in heated agreement! My problem with Obama's comment was that he was actually plagiarising Elizabeth Warren and otherwise pandering to his constituency. People who have built successful businesses OF COURSE rely on the public infrastructure and therefore should contribute to the common good. Mr. Obama conveniently neglected to mention that these people also pay income taxes along the way in addition to salaries and benefits of their employees. It's not like they parachuted into a position of wealth. It's like his myth about the rich not paying taxes. I've done very well for many years, and am a reasonably bright guy, but have never figured out how to avoid ordinary income taxes. Now my marginal tax rate is way below 36%...not because I'm cheating...but because I'm a crusty old fart and most of my investments are in tax-free municipal bonds. There's no free lunch here...these bonds pay less than taxables because they're tax-free. But Mr. Obama would hold me out as an example of a free-loading rich guy underpaying his taxes...which is disingenuous horse manure.

As you said, the world isn't Black and White. There's vast hypocrisy on both sides. The Republicans detest abortion, but are willing to cut programs designed to feed children once they're born...I can't think of anything more contemptible. Obama comes out in favor of same-sex marriage, but doesn't take affirmative steps to legalize the same...so he's promising half-a-loaf in hopes of galvanizing his supporters. Cynical and sleazy IMHO.

If I were king, I would require everyone old enough to vote to sit down and argue (at least once a week) a political position diametrically opposed to their current belief system. Maybe that way we'd come to see the merit of the opposing position and be able to meet somewhere in the middle.

romneygate writes:

in response to Naplesishome:

Based on the text (as reported) the answer seems pretty straightforward. The tenant had a contract right (an option to renew the lease) that he did not (or could not) exercise. If the owner had reneged on the contract right, there would be a lawsuit and damages. If the tenant couldn't afford market rent, then its the owners right to move on. That's why we have contracts and courts to enforce them. The owner is acting like a capitalist, not a socialist, and prior to the current commander-in-chief, that used to be considered a compliment. People generally buy investment properties to make a profit. The Mercato was not developed to enrich the shareholders of Chipotle via below-market rents in perpetuity. It was developed to enrich its developers...that how the system works. Why should the landlord in this situation be held to any other standard?

Please help me find the beacon of economic success that justifies your economic philosophy...let's see...Portugal, Greece, Spain...Fantasy Island?

You're RIGHT. A contract is a contract, especially when it protects a capitalist. We don't want to become a Greece, Spain or Portugal. They didn't tax their 1% beyond their "fair share" right and it worked out like the model being employed in America now. Why does America like to copy from abroad? Investments need more guarantees, or all the entrepreneurs will not invest and just keep their money under their mattresses or in a can buried in the back yard, right?

romneygate writes:

in response to GWW:

It is good to see them close, not a good place. From a to z a bad place to have a drink and eat.

For instance?

Naplesishome writes:

in response to romneygate:

You're RIGHT. A contract is a contract, especially when it protects a capitalist. We don't want to become a Greece, Spain or Portugal. They didn't tax their 1% beyond their "fair share" right and it worked out like the model being employed in America now. Why does America like to copy from abroad? Investments need more guarantees, or all the entrepreneurs will not invest and just keep their money under their mattresses or in a can buried in the back yard, right?

Elephanttamer - to call you a one-note symphony is a crime against harmony. The Greek welfare state has collapsed into the sea of corruption from whence it came. You, of course, would ignore the left-wing government that lied about the country's finances in order to gain entrance into the EU (and euro).

Spain is a different matter altogether. Cheap capital from around Europe flooded into the country sparking an enormous housing boom. The economy rode this false prosperity until the bubble burst. This was flawed capital allocation on a continental scale. You neglected the best example for your position, which is Ireland. There, the government guaranteed the nation's largest banks at the height of the financial crisis, without understanding the gravity and dimension of the institutional losses. The government literally flushed the country's net worth down toilet via horrific judgment.

As someone who started several businesses, all of which prospered without any government bailouts or handouts, I can assure you that business climate does influence entrepreneurial thinking. That, however, is my right :-)

wonderful (Inactive) writes:

in response to Naplesishome:

Elephanttamer - to call you a one-note symphony is a crime against harmony. The Greek welfare state has collapsed into the sea of corruption from whence it came. You, of course, would ignore the left-wing government that lied about the country's finances in order to gain entrance into the EU (and euro).

Spain is a different matter altogether. Cheap capital from around Europe flooded into the country sparking an enormous housing boom. The economy rode this false prosperity until the bubble burst. This was flawed capital allocation on a continental scale. You neglected the best example for your position, which is Ireland. There, the government guaranteed the nation's largest banks at the height of the financial crisis, without understanding the gravity and dimension of the institutional losses. The government literally flushed the country's net worth down toilet via horrific judgment.

As someone who started several businesses, all of which prospered without any government bailouts or handouts, I can assure you that business climate does influence entrepreneurial thinking. That, however, is my right :-)

The private sector is doing fine, eh?

romneygate writes:

in response to Naplesishome:

Elephanttamer - to call you a one-note symphony is a crime against harmony. The Greek welfare state has collapsed into the sea of corruption from whence it came. You, of course, would ignore the left-wing government that lied about the country's finances in order to gain entrance into the EU (and euro).

Spain is a different matter altogether. Cheap capital from around Europe flooded into the country sparking an enormous housing boom. The economy rode this false prosperity until the bubble burst. This was flawed capital allocation on a continental scale. You neglected the best example for your position, which is Ireland. There, the government guaranteed the nation's largest banks at the height of the financial crisis, without understanding the gravity and dimension of the institutional losses. The government literally flushed the country's net worth down toilet via horrific judgment.

As someone who started several businesses, all of which prospered without any government bailouts or handouts, I can assure you that business climate does influence entrepreneurial thinking. That, however, is my right :-)

Of course! Certainly there were/are many astute businessmen as yourself that recognize governmental incentives as opportunities to exercise your entrepreneurial talents. That was the case in Ireland for sure. Somehow, it always comes to exploitation and abuses that are quickly appropriated to the government and the consuming recipients of the "trickle down" economics, right? Aw, I know that doesn't happen in your assessment, right? You just play the system "legally" as you help most times to establish it. Get the programs on the books and then "use" them, right? It only takes a few bucks "donated" to the right politicians, right? You just donate $50K to a politician's election campaign and he or she may get you a $500K tax break. That's a real "successful" business, for too many.

romneygate writes:

in response to wonderful:

The private sector is doing fine, eh?

Is that a text message?

reallifeswfla writes:

Best of luck to the owner and staff of Erin's Isle.
Time marches on.
It's the Naples way, rip it down and build something new.
RaceTrac gas station will be there by this time next year.
Texaco, the fruit stand and the other place will be bulldozed also.
Ironicly, the empty, decaying Shell gas station across the street will remain.

ex151b#232440 writes:

in response to TheyPavedParadise2:

This is exactly why Donna Fiala doesn't understand her job. Businesses in her district are disappearing because of the cost of permitting and fees, etc. Mike would have to spend a small fortune in impact fees to reopen in another location. Add to that the fire inspection, and all sorts of miscellaneous crap. Businesses will continue to close or leave until Fiala, Coletta and Coyle are replaced with people who know what to do to fix the problem.

So true! Every day it gets harder and harder
(and more expensive)to get an OK to build. Coletta must go!

Bigkondorsback (Inactive) writes:

I lived on Manatee Rd in the late 80s. Where did the very hot chick go that worked at the little car wash building to the right of Erin's Isle. That's really the important question here.

anotherPOV writes:

in response to Naplesishome:

Elephanttamer - to call you a one-note symphony is a crime against harmony. The Greek welfare state has collapsed into the sea of corruption from whence it came. You, of course, would ignore the left-wing government that lied about the country's finances in order to gain entrance into the EU (and euro).

Spain is a different matter altogether. Cheap capital from around Europe flooded into the country sparking an enormous housing boom. The economy rode this false prosperity until the bubble burst. This was flawed capital allocation on a continental scale. You neglected the best example for your position, which is Ireland. There, the government guaranteed the nation's largest banks at the height of the financial crisis, without understanding the gravity and dimension of the institutional losses. The government literally flushed the country's net worth down toilet via horrific judgment.

As someone who started several businesses, all of which prospered without any government bailouts or handouts, I can assure you that business climate does influence entrepreneurial thinking. That, however, is my right :-)

Don't forget that Greece was able to lie about their finances because of the lack of morality exibited by one of America's most vaulted institution; Goldman-Sachs. GS was the cooker of the books that hid Greece's debt from the world. Unregulated capitalism at its best.

drolds writes:

in response to Bigkondorsback:

I lived on Manatee Rd in the late 80s. Where did the very hot chick go that worked at the little car wash building to the right of Erin's Isle. That's really the important question here.

She's 46 now. She has 4 kids. She is hooked on bath salts. She needs a sugar daddy. Are you still interested?

just_makin_it writes:

To all you haters out there, why do you bother?
To anyone who's interested, I went by Erins Isle around 6:45am and there was already a Channel 2 news van parked in front. Watch the news at noon for the story!
Good luck Mr. Ward, I had many a good meal there, the music was wonderful, and the Chablis was awesome! Maybe open somewhere else? You will be missed!

romneygate writes:

in response to just_makin_it:

To all you haters out there, why do you bother?
To anyone who's interested, I went by Erins Isle around 6:45am and there was already a Channel 2 news van parked in front. Watch the news at noon for the story!
Good luck Mr. Ward, I had many a good meal there, the music was wonderful, and the Chablis was awesome! Maybe open somewhere else? You will be missed!

The "vultures" were up early, right?

Naplesishome writes:

in response to anotherPOV:

Don't forget that Greece was able to lie about their finances because of the lack of morality exibited by one of America's most vaulted institution; Goldman-Sachs. GS was the cooker of the books that hid Greece's debt from the world. Unregulated capitalism at its best.

I hardly want to venture down the dubious trail of defending Goldman Sachs, but answer me this: If you're a gunsmith, and you sell someone a weapon, and the person who bought the weapon kills somebody, do you blame the murderer or the gunsmith? Goldman sold a financial product to a Greek government intent on committing fraud. How this transaction was represented to Goldman (and vice versa) remains unknown. It's interesting that the entity most damaged by this transaction, namely the EU, has not taken any action against Goldman (or the former Greek government officials). Makes you wonder about complicity on all sides.

From my perspective this is not an issue of "unregulated capitalism" - its an issue of deliberate fraud. Criminal behavior is not the exclusive purview of any governmental system, but representative of the human condition. Hitler was a fascist who murdered twenty million Jews. Stalin was a communist who also killed about twenty million. Our great democracy fire bombed Dresden and dropped nuclear weapons on Nagasaki and Hiroshima. In the final analysis, humans often behave like slightly over-evolved chimps. Some, like elephanttamer, are simply less evolved than others :-).

Gifted1 writes:

"It's a shame because I probably won't get more than 10 cents on a dollar."
That says it all right there.
30 years in business and thinks he is being nickle and dimed. There has NEVER been a less expensive time to open a business. Have you seen the local strip mall vacancies?
Where did all the money go?

romneygate writes:

in response to Naplesishome:

I hardly want to venture down the dubious trail of defending Goldman Sachs, but answer me this: If you're a gunsmith, and you sell someone a weapon, and the person who bought the weapon kills somebody, do you blame the murderer or the gunsmith? Goldman sold a financial product to a Greek government intent on committing fraud. How this transaction was represented to Goldman (and vice versa) remains unknown. It's interesting that the entity most damaged by this transaction, namely the EU, has not taken any action against Goldman (or the former Greek government officials). Makes you wonder about complicity on all sides.

From my perspective this is not an issue of "unregulated capitalism" - its an issue of deliberate fraud. Criminal behavior is not the exclusive purview of any governmental system, but representative of the human condition. Hitler was a fascist who murdered twenty million Jews. Stalin was a communist who also killed about twenty million. Our great democracy fire bombed Dresden and dropped nuclear weapons on Nagasaki and Hiroshima. In the final analysis, humans often behave like slightly over-evolved chimps. Some, like elephanttamer, are simply less evolved than others :-).

Please, the gunsmith analogy is simply superfluous. Goldman Sachs has more than a responsibility in the Greek matter than merely providing an investment vehicle. That has always been the case and criteria for investment. Goldman need to provide a prospectus outlining that responsibility and the nature of the vehicle involved and all the other particulars. There are those that will contend that was the case. If so, the EU is just another naive "investor"!

Naplesishome writes:

in response to romneygate:

Please, the gunsmith analogy is simply superfluous. Goldman Sachs has more than a responsibility in the Greek matter than merely providing an investment vehicle. That has always been the case and criteria for investment. Goldman need to provide a prospectus outlining that responsibility and the nature of the vehicle involved and all the other particulars. There are those that will contend that was the case. If so, the EU is just another naive "investor"!

ET - I'm really not trying to be obsequious here, but you appear ignorant to the facts, circumstances and laws that apply. G-S was not conducting a public offering of registered securities. There is no regulatory, legal or moral obligation to provide a "prospectus" to an accredited investor ("the Greek government") for a derivative contract. Moreover, there has been no allegation that the customer...again the Greek government...was in any way misled. Quite to the contrary, the Greeks got exactly the product they wanted (a debt swap) and the outcome they desired (entrance to the EU). It was the Greek government that misrepresented its financial position to the European Union, not G-S. As such, my gunsmith/gun buyer analogy holds.

I'm really not trying to be argumentative, it's just that your understanding of the duties and obligations of an investment bank is simply incorrect. By the way, that does NOT speak to the morality of the process.

I have long argued that the British approach to accounting is superior to ours (and most of the rest of the world). We are "rules-based" while they are "principals-based". The problem with "rules-based" accounting is that you need a rule for every eventuality and creatively deceptive people continually come up with new eventualities. Principal-based accounting imputes intent...if your intent was to deceive, even if you followed all correct practices and procedures, then your accounting is flawed. The problem with "principal-based" accounting is that malicious intent is easier to allege than to prove.

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