Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Bloomberg reveals leaked German papers demanding more austerity for Ireland.

The Bloomberg report is linked from here. A quote showing that it is Irish assets that the EU pillagers are really after:

The commission said that an initial asset-sales plan provided by the government in December hadn’t been sufficiently ambitious and had been revised. The government said earlier this month it will seek to raise as much as 3 billion euros from selling assets.


UK Parliament debate on the EU Fiscal Treaty

The debate opened at 12:51 today and was a very rare Emergency Debate approved by the Speaker under Standing Order 24 moved by Bill Cash.

A feel for the grave emergency represented by this Non EU Treaty has at least been recognised in one part of the Palace of Westminster! Not so for the opposition, whose benches were virtually deserted throughout.

The Hansard report has now started to appear and I will append my own notes recorded as the debate proceeded with links to that record as the evening progresses. It begins from here.

Bill Cash did his usual accomplished job of pointing out the dangers and legal pitfalls represented by the Treaty, planned to be signed by only 25 of the present EU member states, thereby not (yet) a full EU Treaty!  The most startling revelation for me was the fact that the Foreign Secretary William Hague, in spite of having been urged to appear before Cash's European Scrutiny Committee, has refused do to do, and is not scheduled to appear until the end of March when it will be too late. A typically arrogant thumbing of the nose to democracy by this increasingly irritating non-entity, who has amazingly managed to make his two immediate predecessors appear vaguely competent!

Denis Macshane, unusually in my view made a good contribution to the debate. This passage seemed to me particularly effective:

Let us be clear: the Commission is not involved in this. The European technocracy and bureaucrats are not involved in this; they are utterly sidelined. This is about the raw politics of anger in Germany against Greece, and the raw politics in Greece against Germany. It is also about the raw politics of the Conservative party in this House, some of whose members rightly feel that all the pledges made by their leader, now the Prime Minister, on referendums, renegotiation and repatriation have not in any way been delivered. That is what is causing upset and concern in the House of Commons. I am sure that it was also raw politics in Ireland that led the Taoiseach to agree to the referendum there. We know that Monsieur Hollande has said that, if elected, he will renegotiate the treaty. We also know that Mr Rajoy, the new conservative leader in Spain, has said that he will not implement a Merkozy-type dose, because Spain could not take it.
We need a new approach in Europe, and in this country. I would have no problem if, after 15 years of wallowing in Euroscepticism, the Conservative party rejoined the real European world. I would like to see Conservative MEPs sitting with other centre-right MEPs, precisely to create the links that the hon. Member for South Northamptonshire mentioned. We need more engagement, and not in order to join some Euro-federalist nirvana—that is not on offer at the moment. We are living in not a two-tiered Europe but a multi-tiered Europe, and we have to be part of it. We are not at the moment, but I hope that the Government can change their course before it is too late.

Also from Labour Rhonda, Chris Bryant was impressive. Some quotes:

It is a shame that the hon. Member for South Northamptonshire (Andrea Leadsom) is no longer in her place. I gather she is often referred to nowadays as the new iron lady—although I do not know who will get an Oscar for playing her in the future. I profoundly disagree with her that a multi-tier Europe is a good idea. During my four and a half seconds as Minister for Europe the BRIC economies—Brazil, Russia, India and China, and for that matter, Mexico—repeatedly told me, “It is essential that we know that we are dealing with a single market.” If we decide to cut up the single market, with lots of different tiers of different elements of legislative proposals, it will do us damage with the growing economies of the world. China is not interested in dealing with 27 different countries in Europe; it is interested in doing business in Europe. If it is going to be more difficult to do business in Europe, it will do business elsewhere—and we will have cut off our nose to spite our face.
I wholeheartedly agree with the hon. Member for Stone (Mr Cash) about the danger of technocratic Governments being imposed on other European countries. There has always been an element of democratic deficit within the European Union. In a sense, it is almost inevitable—unless we choose to elect a single President and Government of Europe, to which I would be wholeheartedly opposed because I do not think that there is a single people of Europe.
Undoubtedly the speech of the day came from Conservative MP for Wokingham John Redwood, which I thus quote in full. It appears in the Hansard report from 2:07 pm:

This debate is about the future of democracy itself. There can be no more important issue. We are considering a draft treaty that presumes to take substantial powers of decision over how much a country can spend, how much a country can tax and how much a country can borrow from the democratic choices of the member state to a centrally imposed system, which it is hoped will make the euro work better. This matter is of vital importance to the United Kingdom because we wish our neighbours to live in democratic prosperity for their own sakes, because we wish to trade with them successfully and because we wish to make sure that there is no danger whatever that our cherished freedoms and independence as a member state that has deliberately kept out of the euro could in any way be damaged by this treaty, which presumes to use European Union institutions to enforce a non-European institution will.

The peoples of western Europe are right to be mightily worried about the bad state of health of their respective democracies where they have adopted the euro. We see daily on our televisions or hear reported on our radios dreadful scenes from Greece, Spain and Italy, which are struggling with the common economic discipline and policy being imposed today. The German-led new treaty says that such discipline is not strong enough, that there needs to be more mutually assured deflation and that there needs to be a madness imposed on these countries to try to see whether the euro will work.

Ministers rightly say that they must not say anything in public or be seen to do anything in public that makes the difficulties of the euro area worse. I fully endorse that approach. They should never normally comment on the euro, because it is too dangerous, it is too difficult and it is up to those in the euro to say what they wish about how their currency is developing. But how it develops is of grave interest to us, so I urge my right hon. Friend the Prime Minister to ensure that, in private, when he is round the table, as he will be, with all the other leaders and with a right to a view, he speaks truth to their impotence. He should say to those assembled leaders struggling to get a grip on their recalcitrant economies and some stability into their very unstable currency, “This is not working.” He should tell them that, in truth, the treaty before us this afternoon cannot conceivably make the euro work. Other things can help to ease the pain of the euro, and in another debate we could discuss many other policies that could pull off the trick of getting many countries through and the euro out the other side, but this treaty is not the way to do it.

This treaty is deeply offensive to many democratic peoples in the countries of western Europe that will face it. It reinforces a German view of how to make the economies of western Europe work that clearly is not working. If part of the medicine for a country that has borrowed too much is to spend less and borrow less in the public sector—that can be the right approach, and I can think of countries where that could apply—at the same time a series of policies have to be adopted to promote growth in the private sector, so that there is some hope, there are some new jobs and there could be new tax revenue coming in.

Where the EU is proposing tax rises, it needs tax reductions on enterprise, business and success. Where it is proposing a bigger monetary straitjacket, it needs monetary ease. It is now creating a very big monetary easing across the eurozone as a whole by tipping trillions of printed money into the system to try to make it work, but that new money cannot possibly help Greece or Portugal, because they have frozen and damaged banks, they are under the austerity cosh, and representatives of the European Union are going in and treating them as if they are damaged economies that cannot conceivably pull through.

The euro scheme is damaging the confidence that Greece and Portugal need in order to see light at the end of the tunnel; it is putting people off investing there. Why would someone go to Greece to invest through euros, if they think that it may be driven out of the currency and forced into a big devaluation? Why would they seek to do business in Greece when the banks are frozen and they are not benefiting from the liquidity injection that is helping the corporate bond market and the Government bond market, temporarily, in Italy and in Spain?

Above all, our Prime Minister has to secure and protect the British interest. We in this House should be very proud of what our predecessors created, obtaining control over how much is raised in taxation, how much is spent and how much this country borrows and prints. We are rightly out of the euro, because those in it cannot conceivably maintain democratic control over those issues. I am grateful to my hon. Friend the Member for Stone (Mr Cash) for raising this issue today before the summit, but we are worried that—inadvertently, I am sure—the Government might get us dragged into much greater supervision of our economy by the European Union, in a way that signs us up to the very mad policies that we are rightly warning them cannot conceivably work.

Europe is at risk: jobs are being destroyed; economies are being gravely damaged; the people are on the streets; and the main political parties in these European countries are signing up to exactly same policy, so even where a general election takes place the popular will is thwarted, as people do not have a proper choice if they stick to the main parties. In one or two countries Governments are even being changed by the European elite without a single vote being cast and without the democratic view of the people and their parties being consulted. Surely everyone in this House is ashamed of that. Surely we all unite in saying that the thing that brings us together is our belief in the power of the ballot box, the voice of the elected representative and the right of people to choose and to say that a policy is failing. We are told by the European establishment that only its policy can work. There is no evidence whatsoever that the policy is working, but there is massive evidence of the damage it is doing.

The final point I would like to highlight from the debate was made by Jacob Rees-Mogg with the important and concise penultimate contribution to the timed out debate from Richard Drax,  herewith:

....a key part of the treaty may already be in breach of European Union law. I refer hon. Members to article 8, which states:

“If the European Commission, after having given the Contracting Party concerned the opportunity to submit its observations, concludes in its report that such Contracting Party has failed to comply with Article 3(2), the matter will be brought to the Court of Justice of the European Union by one or more Contracting Parties.”

What that says is that the European Commission may end up enforcing requirements under the stability pact in direct contradiction of TFEU—the treaty on the functioning of the European Union—126(10).....

A further aspect of the treaty concerns me. Article 16 says that the treaty will be rolled into the TFEU within five years, so it will become part of the whole package of European Union law within five years. It is currently thought, though others may think differently, that it would not have been possible for this treaty to be brought in under enhanced co-operation. However, there is a school of thought that maintains that the ESM treaty which is awaiting ratification by Parliament would allow enhanced co-operation to be used, in which case this treaty could be rolled into the European Union’s treaties without the say-so of the House, under enhanced co-operation. We should be deeply concerned about that, not least—going back to article 8—because it refers to how countries may be fined...

3.27 pm
Richard Drax (South Dorset) (Con):

I pay tribute to my hon. Friend the Member for Stone (Mr Cash) for securing the debate. He stands up for everything in which I and a lot of Members on both sides of the House believe.

I simply do not understand why we all look at this huge abyss, this black hole, this legal and financial federalist nightmare, yet go on pouring billions of euros into it in the hope that it will somehow recover. It will not. The political elite in the entire eurozone are betraying the very people they say they represent.

We are going to have tears over this. We have, unfortunately, already had riots in Greece: God forbid that we have riots in this country one day when the people wake up to realise that we have been, dare I say it, disingenuous—I will not say untruthful because I am not allowed to use that word in this House—to our electorate. We have to be truthful, and we have to base our politics on common sense and the law. I want us to have jobs, growth, wealth and mobility, but we will not get them under the current EU federalist state. We must renegotiate and start talking. I urge those on the Front Bench, please, for our party and our country, to say at the meeting, “Enough is enough: let’s sit down and find a more common-sense approach for the future.”

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Der Spiegel opines "Irish can't afford to say no"

Der Spiegel seems to have got things the wrong way round in its article on the Irish referendum on the Fiscal Compact, just issued and linked here.

It is future generations of Irish men and women who cannot afford to continue to say yes, to more money printing, LTROs  (another €529 billion this morning), lies and democracy destruction presently under way within the Euro Group. The Irish are already deeply in debt and will remain so for the next generation due to their flirtation with the EU and shame of their political class.

Ireland will at least have another chance to once again reject an EU Treaty, give Britain just one chance and we could regroup with Australia and Canada, just as I urged on my first posting of today!

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Schultz addresses the Greek Parliament as the EU vice tightens

The above image is from the report on the EU Parliament President's visit to Athens last evening from The News Tribe, linked here!

This visit seems odd in itself, plus being particularly insensitively timed.

 It could well foster deepening concerns amongst many in Europe, that the title of the YouTube video posted below might prove frighteningly wrong:


Quitting the EU is as simple as ABC!

Finally Britain's House of Commons will today debate the European Union! Three hours has been set aside for the debate today at the request of Bill Cash and granted by the Speaker, although it does not yet appear on the published order of business, see here. My source is John Redwood's Diary, read here.

Although the subject is the Non-EU/Fiscal Compact Treaty (upon which the Irish will now have a referendum) the subject of the EU as a whole really cannot this time surely be avoided.

The EU is like a senile, demented, sclerotic, cantankerous, mean, illogical, incontinent  and elderly patient, lying almost comatose at the final moments of its existence, whom none wish to either tend, visit nor comprehend!  All, without exception, secretly yearn for it to pass beyond death's doorway.

Little suprise then that Parliament seeks to avoid discussing the subject as much as it possibly can. The green benches today will probably be as bare as usual when the necessity to consider the monster that actually controls our entire polity is raised for debate!

Yet the time has come to consider the solution to our involvement in this increasingly unaffordable disaster. It cannot in all conscience be any longer delayed!

First step must be to identify a identify a solution. That is as easy as ABC!

Australia - Britain - Canada!

Britain MUST first withdraw from the EU and then establish a zone of complete direct free movement of goods and people between the three equal entities. Offer our UN Security Council vote for future use by co-decision as an extra carrot to that of our large, mobile, hard-working and educated population, eager for extra space!

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Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Rheding in London tomorrow to meet Clegg

EU Vice-President Rheding, an even bigger spare part than her fellow Luxembourger, Jean-Claude Juncker, yet just as dangerous to freedom, prosperity and democracy, is flying in to London from Barcelona tomorrow to meet with the low-life Deputy PM, and EU lackey, Nick Clegg.

Now that is jet plane abuse of the environment if ever I heard of it! Can we please send Luxembourgers back to tend their cows, at least they could do little harm out there in the fields!

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Ireland to get referendum on Non-Euro/Fiscal Compact Treaty

The link with the news is from Deutsche Welle, here. Doubts had been thrown on this question and it is the second glimmer of hope for today after the German Constitutional Court ruled in favour of their Parliament and against the EU this morning!

The Irish government announced on Tuesday the country would hold a referendum to endorse a new European fiscal pact which most EU member countries agreed in January. The pact aims to implement tighter spending rules particularly for countries that use the euro currency.

Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny informed Parliament that the government's legal adviser had said the fiscal pact must go to a public vote.

"The Irish people will be asked for the authorization in a referendum to ratify the European Stability Treaty," Kenny told legislators. Kenny said the popular vote would be prepared over the next few weeks and argued that it would be in Ireland's interests to vote in favor of the accord. In January, all the members of the EU except Britain and the Czech Republic approved the pact.

The Fiscal Compact now seems almost certainly doomed due to the worsening economic situation in the Euro Group periphary making its provisions daily closer to something from fantasy land or a primer for revolution.

The second Greek Bailout terms face the Dutch parliament tomorrow and that in Finland later in the week. The 4% fall in sales of durable goods during January and weak December home sales in the USA makes hope from across the Atlantic even harder to discern.


Lord Falconer admits New Labour was "Too Cosy" with Murdoch

BBC Radio 4 Today programme's interview with Blair's former flatmate and buddy Lord Falconer gets a mention in the Evening Standard tonight, read here. A quote:

"I do worry now that we were too keen to curry favour," the former Lord Chancellor said on Radio 4. "It's not remotely inconceivable that because the politicians thought it was okay to court News International, other public officials followed. I don't mean the explicit corruption that Deputy Assistant Commissioner [Sue] Akers described yesterday. I mean the much-too-cosy relationships that were formed where... what went onto the political agenda or what was reported about what the police did was determined by that relationship."

There is a long and tortuous road to follow from that tiny step in the right direction!

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BBC ignorance in full form

The BBC interviewer on the video/radio report on Greece's default, linked here, amusingly seeks solace in that had Greece not been in the EU irt would have defaulted long ago and at greater cost for the private investors. Happily the moronic half-wit is quickly corrected by the interviewee from Legal & General who points out that the cost to private sector sovereign bond holders is at the high end 73 to 80 per-cent losses of recent international defaults!

The BBC as a long term recipient of funds from the EU, perhaps a cause of its complete and utter bias, need not worry itself about the fate of those who have lent their OWN money to the sickening construct that is the EU - the two organisations are a perfect match in that neither of them have any money of their own, hence their complete economic incompetence and spendthrift ways when it comes to own their employees comforts!


German Constitutional Court bolsters German Parliament

The Chicago Tribune reports as follows:

The German constitutional court ruled that parliament may not delegate most decisions on disbursing bailout funds to a special committee meeting in secret, as Merkel had planned after a previous ruling bolstered lawmakers' oversight powers....

In a case brought by two opposition lawmakers, the court said a nine-member sub-committee created to approve urgent action by the bailout fund was "in large part" unconstitutional because it infringed on the rights of other deputies.

The judges said the panel may approve price-sensitive debt purchases on the secondary market by the EFSF bailout fund, since confidentiality was essential in such operations.

But they denied it the power to authorize loans or preventive credit lines to troubled states or for the recapitalization of banks.

While not a show-stopper, the decision means parliamentary deliberations on future rescue operations could be slower and more cumbersome, since the full 41-member budget committee or the entire 620-member lower house will have to decide.

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Politicians cannot separate themselves from the corruption!

Coverage of the corruption allegations in the UK media is, perhaps understandably, sparse this morning. The following comes from the IHT:

In another blow to Mr. Murdoch, related this time to The News of the World, a lawyer for the Leveson Inquiry said Rebekah Brooks, a former Murdoch executive, was apparently informed by the police in 2006 that detectives had evidence that the cellphones of dozens of celebrities, politicians and sports figures had been illegally hacked by an investigator working for the newspaper.
The disclosure, contained in a September 2006 e-mail from a company lawyer to the editor of The News of the World, Andy Coulson, is highly significant. Until late in 2010, Ms. Brooks, Mr. Coulson and other officials at News International, the British newspaper arm of News Corporation, repeatedly asserted that the hacking had been limited to a single “rogue reporter” — the paper’s royal correspondent, Clive Goodman. The assertion was rendered implausible, at best, by the fact that the police had information that so many hacking victims existed, and that so few of them had anything to do with the royal family.
Monday’s disclosures could not have come at a more inopportune time for Mr. Murdoch. In recent weeks, morale at The Sun hit a low point after a number of senior editors and reporters were arrested on suspicion of illegally paying sources.
Blog editors emphasis and text enlargement

Britain's leaders will eventually have to face up to and account for, ALL the implications of the Murdoch empire's involvement in Britain's power structures and politics, not least with the presence in Downing Street of Andy Coulson during the opening stages of the present administration by this Coalition Government. 

The hacking of supposed celebrities was the means to obtain the circulation which was required to obtain the power which was exercised to contol the British political process. That point will have to be eventually addressed!

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Greece finally defaults!

The announcement of the S and P latest downgrade of Greece may be read from here.

The amusing part now has begun to unfold as various experts and leading lights of the EU system switch from claiming this as a real disaster and the end of the common euro currency, to assertions that it is really nothing to worry about at all, as we heard in an hilarious broadcast from the BBC Today programme this morning.


The North Atlantic trading region.

The Independent has an interesting article this morning raising the possibility that the eastern seaboard of the North American Continent was first colonised by Europeans. It is linked from here and the following are two significant quotes:

chemical analysis carried out last year on a European-style stone knife found in Virginia back in 1971 revealed that it was made of French-originating flint.....

Stanford and Bradley have long argued that Stone Age humans were quite capable of making the 1500 mile journey across the Atlantic ice - but till now there was comparatively little evidence to support their thinking.

But the new Maryland, Virginia and other US east coast material, and the chemical tests on the Virginian flint knife, have begun to transform the situation. Now archaeologists are starting to investigate half a dozen new sites in Tennessee, Maryland and even Texas – and these locations are expected to produce more evidence.


Monday, February 27, 2012

S&P downgrades outlook for the EU's EFSF Bailout fund to Negative!

The announcement is linked here. The rationale is stated as follows:

Following the lowering of the ratings on France and Austria on Jan. 13, 2012,
the rated long-term debt instruments already issued by the EFSF are no longer exclusively supported by guarantees from the EFSF guarantor members rated 'AAA' by Standard & Poor's or 'AAA' rated liquid securities.....

The negative outlook on the long-term rating on the EFSF mirrors the negative outlooks of France and Austria.


Dan Hannan on Greece!

Amusing to see the head-nodding to EU federalism, from the beneficiary of BBC nepotism, (supposedly the impartial interviewer anf informed programme hostess,) as the rabid Lib/Dem, EU federalist and craven flunkey makes the absurd points that, only for the moment, still keep him in unparalelled luxury:

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Britain's public officials being paid off for years!

As I was only saying just this morning, read here!

Britain has become wide-open to corruption following the example set from the top during the years of the New Labour Governments of Blair and Brown who simultaneously bankrupted the nation AND handed power to Brussels!

This is how the matter is being reported in the USA this afternoon, linked here:

UK police describe network of corrupt officials, illegal payments by Murdoch's The Sun tabloid

LONDON - Rupert Murdoch's top-selling U.K. tabloid, The Sun, had a culture of making illegal payments to corrupt public officials in return for stories, a senior British police officer said Monday.

Later that same article continues with the following:

Akers said journalists paid not only police officers but also military, health and other government officials. One official received a total of 80,000 pounds ($126,912) over several years, Akers said, adding that police also are investigating whether officials were placed on retainers by newspapers.

She said "a network of corrupted officials" had provided The Sun with stories that were mostly "salacious gossip."

"There appears to have been a culture at The Sun of illegal payments, and systems have been created to facilitate such payments whilst hiding the identity of the officials receiving the money," said Akers, who is in charge of a police investigation into phone hacking and police bribery.

She said one journalist had "over several years received over 150,000 pounds ($238,000) in cash to pay his sources, a number of whom were public officials." She said payments to public officials went far beyond acceptable practices such as buying them a meal or a drink.

The country became used to its politicians being disgraced during the expenses scandal. This is on an entirely different level. It is inconceivable that these practices were not known about at the highest levels of the Civil Service and Government. The appointment of Sir John Chilcot to head the Iraq inquiry, after it was already publicly known and revealed that he had received undeclared payments from a foreign wind electricity promoting company, is surely evidence enough for all beneath his exalted pay grade, to believe that such practises had become widely acceptable?

The British Establishment should tonight be in deep crisis! Not least because of the disgraceful police inaction since deep suspicions became self-evident so long ago!


Was Ayn Rand first to state Tea Party Aims?

An interesting op-ed from Bloomberg that is linked here.

Good news for fans of Atlas Shrugged and Ayn Rand, it being reported that the second part of the movie has been given the go ahead!

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EU Pantomimes begin to run concurrently!

The IMF is now complaining that the EU Commissions action last week, in threatening to cut off Hungary's cohesion funds of €495 million, is having an adverse affect on its negotiations for a loan to rescue the Hungarian currency, already underway before the threat was made, read here.

Meantime Bloomberg reports that the German Parliament is being made to withdraw a demand that the IMF maintains its level of support at previous levels for Greece, even though the IMF was refused further financing at the weekend, because the EU could not agree to raise the firewall, because the German Parliament says it cannot afford it, hence the IMF's shortage of funds?

Yet as I tweeted earlier today, Mario Draghi at the ECB has the cure for all of this. He has decided he can create as many virtual Euros as he wishes and lend them all to Europe's banks regardless of their own relative strength, and all at only 1% p.a. for three years. These banks have been this morning lending on at 1.2% for 6 months and 1.29% for nine months to the sovereign state of Italy, which is one of the powers (I use the term figuratively) standing behind the ECB. That latter point will perhaps explain why Draghi's plan can immediately be seen for what it is. Otherwise in complete lalaland, the entire world could borrow from Draghi for three years at 1% but who would be there to cover the losses - something, perhaps, for the German Parliamentarians to ponder before they vote at 6 pm this evening!

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Are ECB TARGET2 risks equivalent to a "bank run"?

The following is from an article in Der Spiegel this morning, on the inherent risks of what is essentially the ECB's own QE programme, due for a massive increase tomorrow, in one sub-section titled as being "Like Free Heroin for Junkies" all linked from here, and from whence I quote this:

When, say, a Greek auto dealer pays for a German car, the money flows from his home country to Germany. When a Greek bank receives a loan from a foreign investor, the money flows back.

However, since banks in ailing countries like Greece are no longer receiving money from private investors and the ECB is helping out instead, the TARGET2 deficit of these countries has soared in an alarming manner. Italy, for instance, now owes the euro system €180 billion -- compared to just one year ago, when it had a deficit of only €20 billion. "This is a bank run," says Ansgar Belke from the German Institute for Economic Research (DIW). "Investors have basically withdrawn their money from Italian financial institutions from one day to the next."

Germany, on the other hand, is currently owed around €500 billion within the TARGET2 system. In an interview with the center-right
Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung newspaper last week, ECB head Draghi played down the significance of those imbalances. "There are no risks in a cohesive monetary union," he said.

But what happens if one or more countries actually default on their loans and leave the euro zone? Ifo head Sinn has no doubt: "Then the deficits would have to be balanced out." Germany would have to shoulder enormous costs as a result.
Is Mario Draghi now the most dangerous man in the world, and indeed is he still within anybody's control?


Britain is Broke - George Osborne, Chancellor of the Exchequer!

“The British Government has run out of money because all the money was spent in the good years,” the Chancellor said. “The money and the investment and the jobs need to come from the private sector.” Daily Telegraph, 27/02/12

All well and good, clearly obvious facts, known by all sensible people for several years! So what is the job that should now be being done by the Government and all the other institutions and facilities of the State?

First; those responsible must be brought to account and punished with the full force of the law for both their criminal negligence and where it can be proven, outright fraud. They are of course spread out everywhere across British society, mainly within the public services and institutions, (but not exclusivey see T. Dan Smith and John Poulson).

Second; large areas of public expenditure are wasted. That waste is a function of public administration, it is most evident within the MOD and NHS, but exists across central and local government. The NHS reform has become a farce, not least because an individual's health should be that individual's own primary responsibility. Scrap the NHS.  Withdraw the major part of the cost of working adults' healthcare, from the state, and replace it upon the individual.

Both the above steps might bring home to the wider public the severity of the actual crisis the country today faces!

 It will be poltically difficult for both the Coalition parties, but the senior figures of the third, should initially be safely behind bars and unlikely to benefit until the economy has brilliantly improved, which with these two steps, it is practically guaranteed so to do!


Sunday, February 26, 2012

Warning on US Deficit at G20 from IIF's Dallara!

Attention was not all upon the EU and the Euro in Mexico City this Sunday it would seem. The report, linked here, sounds some other ominous warnings:

The non-partisan US Congressional Budget Office estimates that President Barack Obama will finish his first mandate with four consecutive fiscal years showing a deficit above $1 trillion.
Earlier this month an administration official said Obama's budget for the current fiscal year projects a $1.3 trillion deficit, slightly higher than the $1.296 trillion in 2011.
According to estimates from the International Monetary Fund, the US national debt surpassed the country's Gross Domestic Product in 2011 and should rise to more than 107% of GDP this year.


Poll has Germans opposing new Greek bailout by 62% to 33%

The full report on the poll from Reuters is linked from here.

A similar Emnid poll in September found 53 percent opposed and 43 percent in favor.

In what is becoming the norm across Europe, the German Parliament is fully expected to nevertheless vote in favour of the bailout, by a large majority, as Europe's elected politicians become ever more fearful of the consequences of their self-interest, greed and utter contempt for democracy!


G20 plans $2 trillion firewall next April

These mega numbers are supposed to impress by their sheer number on noughts at the end, and nought is exactly what they are worth.

How many $billions will the full salary package of the next World Bank Chairman have to be for managing these sums?

Career politicians have lost control of events, their every announcement proves that fact ever more clearly. Here is the one from Canadian sources on this latest ridiculous preposterous package.


Osborne only rules out further taxpayer cash for the EU for this weekend.

Britain's government quite clearly plans to remain within the multinational structures, such as the G20, which are slowly destroying their taxpayers livliehoods in a vain attempt to cling to their own power. George Osborne, attending the G20 Finance Ministers' meeting in Mexico City, has provided an interview with Sky News, which may be seen later this morning, a report on which is linked from here.
Speaking to Sky's Dermot Murnaghan, the Chancellor said: "We are prepared to consider IMF resources but only once we see the colour of the eurozone money and we have not seen the colour of the eurozone money.

"Whilst this G20 conference, I think, has a lot of important things to discuss... I don't think you're going to see any additional IMF resources committed here because, quite frankly, the eurozone have not committed additional resources themselves, and I think that quid pro quo will be clearly established here in Mexico City."

A responsible government of informed and intelligent ministers operating with the long term intersts of their citizens and taxpayers at the forefront of their minds, would have already begun the process of withdrawing from the never-ending merry-go-round of international meetings, which do nothing but hasten the rate of economic decline and foster false delusions of the correctness of the disastrous policies the West's career politicians continue to impose.


Saturday, February 25, 2012


In memory of Joe Desmond -

Olli's new Eurogroup Categories - German and non-German

Thanks to the Daily Mail blog of Mary Ellen Synon, for picking up on this one of Olli's faux pas, that I missed, the link is here and the exact quote is as follows:

Then during the questions there emerged a new phrase about the 17-member single currency: 'the 16 non-German members of the eurozone.'

Great. Europe is being divided into 'Germans' and 'non-Germans.' Last time I came across this kind of thing was in South Africa in the early 1980s when the doors -- and pretty much everything else --were designated for 'whites' and 'non-whites.'


G20 Finance Ministers in Mexico City this weekend.


Irish President Higgins' views on Fiscal Compact alarm Dublin

The Irish Times carries the report of their President's visit and speech in London last week, linked here. It would be quite astounding and an apparent complete failure of his duty to his country, in this commentator's view, had President Higgins suggested he would stand idly by while the entire sovereignty of his country was signed away to foreigners, yet nevertheless that would appear to be what his Ministers expect! A quote:

The primary concern among Cabinet Ministers relates to the President’s comments about the possibility of summoning the Council of State if the Government proceeds to ratify the fiscal compact treaty by legislation rather than referendum.

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Olli Rehn has been briefing "informally" in the sauna!

I noted the exchange at Olli Rehn's press briefing this week, regarding male only press briefings and the possible dress code for a similar session for female journalists, picked up on by Open Europe, linked here.

At the time, I knew not, that the session had been held in a sauna. No wonder the hopelessly at sea Olli Rehn came over as even more flustered than ever. So here we go again:


Friday, February 24, 2012

Greece's private creditors get ' Haircut' notice of 73 to 74 percent!

The farce continues with these notices being served as Europe's financial markets close. We must wonder what other surprises might be in store when Wall Street shuts, last week it was the announcement by Mme Lagarde in Berlin that the IMF would only meet 10% of the costs of Greek Bailout 2.0!

The report on the PSI terms may be read in this summary from DW, linked here.


Mario Monti - Sixteen Mansions and now the Palazzo Chigi!

Mario Monti greeted Irish Taoiseach Enda Kenny, at his new palace today, as may be read in the Irish Times, linked here.

Selling out your countrymen can certainly prove profitable and provide a luxurious lifestyle in the short run, but one must wonder........?


The reality of EU economic rule by Rehn! EU Tyranny!

The following paragraphs are taken from an article in published today, on the economic disaster unfolding in Spain:
Spain is supposed to bring down its deficit to 4.4 of GDP this year, but given the recession, the government is now trying to negotiate a five-percent target, the Financial Times reports.
Madrid already missed its deficit target in 2011, when Rajoy disclosed that it exceeded 8 percent of GDP compared to the 6 percent declared by his predecessor, Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero.
Recent past shows that a change of government is not seen as enough of a reason to accept an adjustment in a country's agreed targets. When Belgium finally formed a government last year it still had to pass spending cuts within a tight deadline or face severe fines.
“We will work with the Spanish authorities and decisions will be taken once we have a full picture,” said Rehn referring to when the budget is drawn up and submitted to the EU commission in March. Rehn also said that his services will examine if last year's overshoot of the deficit target was a one-off and if the blame lies with the central or regional governments.
NB "Recent past shows that a change of government is not seen as enough of a reason to accept an adjustment in a country's agreed targets."

Democracy is clearly dead within the Eurogroup. In Ireland their civil servants negotiated the austerity between elected Governments, as happened in Portugal!  In Belgium fines are exacted in spite of a change in governance, ie regardless of the policies poltical parties might offer their voters during an election campaign. Yet still Europeans contniue as if their daily lives will continue as before, while tyranny is installed on every side!


Cameron's pretence of Englishness exposed.

Frank Field MP asked a question at PMQ this week which received a less than frank answer:

The leader of the English Democrats, Robin Tilbrook (just announced as his party's candidate for Mayor of London) has addressed the nonsense of this reply on his blog, which is linked from here.


Greece set to launch the PSI intitiative.

Ekathimerini has the report on PSI with some details of the proposals, linked here.

In reading links from that Greek english news source, this blogger recommends readers consider that this news source now seems completely under Greek state control, see my posting of last evening, linked here.


Bankers and world government. 40 minute video.


Australia's Governing Labor Party splits asunder!

Any reasonably prosperous future there may be for the long suffering inhabitants of the British Isles will now almost certainly depend upon a rapid renewal of ties and trading links with our English speaking democratic cousins spread across the globe, rather than accepting further subjugation to an increasingly dictatorial and anti-democratic EU.

It is therefore a matter of considerable concern that Australia appears about to enter a period of political turmoil, brought about by the resignation of former Prime Minister Kevin Rudd this week and a now open contest for the Labor Party leadership and that of the minority coalition government. Reports from The Age, The Australian and west Australia are linked from their titles. A Reuters UK report from this morning is linked here.

Hopefully, while Australia goes through a period of political uncertainty between now and the next scheduled elections in late 2013, Britain itself will see the reality of  the utter emptiness underlying its own governing coalition.

Hopefully some senior political figure will grasp the opportunity this period of deepening chaos offers to forge a new political partnership with Australia's opposition leader Tony Abbott.

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Thursday, February 23, 2012

Proof positive that all freedoms & liberty have now been destroyed in Greece!

The following thoroughly sickening and fawning item has just appeared in ekathimerini from Greece, linked here:
The PM's quiet dignity

It is almost impossible to say anything good about anyone participating in the governance of the country right now.
We must, however, acknowledge the efforts made by Prime Minister Lucas Papademos over the past few months in order to ensure Greece’s position in the eurozone and to stave off a disorderly default.
Papademos achieved a fine balancing act between the political parties in his government, while also earning the badly dented trust of our international partners.
The first phase of his mission has been accomplished, but several tough weeks remain ahead.
However, even those who disagree with the agreement forged in Brussels should acknowledge not only the hard work put in by the prime minister, but also his quiet dignity and the moral standard he brought to the office he was assigned in such adverse conditions.
It has been during his tenure that Greece’s main political parties have really grasped the magnitude of the problems the country faces and as a result have begun to work together, something that seemed inconceivable last November.

Ask yourselves, would any newspaper publishing in a country where democracy survived and human rights were still assured, write such nonsense about their Leader, imposed from the outside, without ever gaining a vote in any position he ever held, while slowly imposing misery and poverty described as "necessary austerity"?

This is what the EU has wrought!


George Osborne - an extra menace to Britain's oil supplies!

George Osborne's policies have already resulted in a real slow-down in exploration activity in the British sector of the North Sea. Brilliantly mistimed and breathtakingly ignorant as it was when first announced his extra tax decisions appear ever more mistaken as the threat from Iran in the Straits of Hormuz pushes the oil markets to daily higher prices.

IP Dinner week in London has exacerbated these concerns, according to a report this evening from Reuters, linked here, where reading between the lines of the report, it appears that the stubborness of ministers and their civil servants in interpreting the exact requirements for the decommissioning of old fields is likely to so add to oil industry costs, such that new developments could once again be further discouraged!

Yet more useless wind turbines anyone?


EU Interim Economic Forecast

The pdf document is linked from here. The listing of the quarterly growth/shrinkage estimates by country is on page 45 of the pdf document.


My tweet on Olli & Another Fine Mess replay with Olli live!

Olli Rehn - Forecast basis changed from economies of 7 largest countries to total 27! I wonder why? Euro area is in "mild" recession.


IMF to impose a €30 Billion ceiling on total Greek exposure.

The report from ekathimerini is linked from here.

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Spain declares Fiscal Compact impossible even before ratification.

Spain has had the temerity to point out to the madmen and women in Brussels that the provisions of the new fiscal compact treaty could not even stand a chance of being implemented in cloud cuckoo land, read the report in this morning's Daily Telegraph, linked here, from which comes this quote:

Prime minister Mariano Rajoy has reportedly asked European officials to raise Spain's debt reduction target to 5pc, claiming that reducing it to 4.4pc will be impossible.
The ongoing damage of the debt crisis – and the German-led austerity drive – could be laid bare on Thursday if the European Commission (EC) unveils a wholesale revision of the eurozone's growth forecasts, as expected. Experts said the EC is preparing to cut its growth forecasts following the radical spending cuts, tax increases and job losses across Europe.

The missing ingredient for any cure for the ills that beset all the economies of the EU and the consequent plight of society across Europe, is the lack of democratic consent. The EU as presently constructed will never achieve that and every day that passes as it drives events in totally the wrong direction will deepen the consequent ill effects.

Democratic legitimacy has to be restored on a nation by nation basis. General elections are presently shortly due in Greece, followed by France, let us hope an anti-EU democratic and free-market alternative is provided in each of these nations, so that their voters, for once, have an opportunity for demonstrating the utter revulsion that by now the EU is everywhere due!

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Taming Treaties - the Intelligence Squared debate in Greece

The report on last evening's debate is from ekathimerini and is linked here.
A quote regarding the vote at its conclusion is the following:

An audience poll suggested that 75 percent were in favor of staying in the euro and less than 19 percent against. The problem, though, is that unless the situation improves substantially in the months to come, the question of whether Greece should use the euro or drachma may not be one that Greeks ever get the chance to answer.

This is merely hinting at the reality of Greece's already lost autonomy. I would suggest that the EU, having decided that no country can leavethe euro, requires that all Eurogroup members must remain stuck within the wealth destroying common currency until it entirely collapses under the weight of its own insoluble contradictions.

The Irish Times this morning has an article linked here, which supports this view when considering the deliberate construction of the fiscal compact treaty to avoid a referendum in Ireland. Increasingly treaties will be drawn to maintain the charade of national consent, while terms that would prove obnoxious to either democracy and decency are subsequently imposed behind the scenes and sickeningly without any public protest from national parliaments! That article opens as follows:

GERMANY’S MINISTER for European Affairs has confirmed that European Union negotiators sought to design the euro zone fiscal compact in such a way to avoid a referendum in Ireland.
Michael Link, who was visiting Dublin yesterday for talks with Ministers, officials and members of the Oireachtas, added that Ireland’s constitutional requirements will also help to determine the drafting, at next week’s EU summit, of rules governing the role of the European Court of Justice in enforcing the new pact.

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Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Chief Seattle's Response vs Mario Monti!

What point or purpose to the 16 houses of Mario Monti? See the posting immediately beneath this!

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Mario Monti - 16 mansions, $1.68 million p.a. & PM of Italy. EU corporatism laid bare!

As part of an exercise in transparency, the Italian public and others across Europe, can this evening see the rewards of a long career working for the EU, doing nothing apparently other than bankrupting former nation states and destroying national democracies. All these proofs come from the declaration of interests of EU appointed, Italian PM, Mario Monti, formerly hero of all eurocrats for his torment of Honeywell and massive, while pointless, fine of Microsoft !

Collecting houses all along the way it seems!

Read a report from Asia One, linked here!


Something is growing in Spain!

H/T Acting Man Blog, linked here.

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Olli's €750 Billion Firewall - perhaps come a Harvest Moon?

Even after the non-event of last Monday/Tuesday night, Commissioner Olli Rehn, has been amazingly specific on a new BIGGER EU firewall, he has been quoted as saying - "It should be possible to combine the firepower of the ESM and the remaining amount of the EFSF in order to have a substantially stronger financial firewall than we have at the moment. If you calculate you can see the ESM is 500bn euros and the EFSF remainder is 250bn euros."

Olli seems to believe a transfer union has been agreed, "Oh dear Another Fine Mess, Olli!" How much of that will Spain and Italy be liable for one wonders, and poor old France?????

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UK again outvoted over approval of an irregular EU budget

Open Europe points out this morning that George Osborne followed all his predecessors in accepting the result of a majority vote over a deeply flawed EU budget, rather than leaving the meeting and refusing to pay. One report from the WSJ is linked here.

This is the seventeenth consecutive year the budget has been approved even after the European Court of Auditors found material errors in EU spending.


The Killer paragraph of the Eurogroup Greek Statement

The official statement of this week's Eurogroup Meeting concluded in the early hours of Tuesday morning is linked here. The crucial/killer paragraph is as follows:

It is understood that the disbursements for the PSI operation and the final decision to approve the guarantees for the second programme are subject to a successful PSI operation and confirmation, by the Eurogroup on the basis of an assessment by the Troika, of the legal implementation by Greece of the agreed prior actions. The official sector will decide on the precise amount of financial assistance to be provided in the context of the second Greek programme in early March, once the results of PSI are known and the prior actions have been implemented.

We must now wait to see if a credit event is then deemed to have occured thus triggering payments on outstanding Credit Default Swaps.Good background is linked here, titled very fittingly, "Greece set on mechanical ventialtion".

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Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Eurogroup Agreement on Greece 21/02/12

The photograph at the beginning of the report, linked here, on the supposed "final deal" for Greece, reached during last night, most probably says enough at this very early stage. Three individuals none of whom have the experience, track record nor the competence for the task!

I may comment more fully in due time, but in fairness to those involved, proper consideration should be given as and when the detail becomes clear.

This blog's future attention will, as recommended to others yesterday, mainly focus upon the real problem areas for Europe - Spain and Italy, but mainly the failing EU itself!


Monday, February 20, 2012

Ecofin should have mainly Spain on their agenda for today.

The rising interest and debt figures for Spain in this linked report from SFGate originating from Bloomberg are truly and newly frightening.

Ecofin should forget their tinkering with the tiny economies and horrifying debts of Greece and Portugal, they have let matters deteriorate far too far, they are beyond outside help! In Italy the gargantuan ego of Mario Monti makes any sane or sensible outsiders' steps to help that economy an absolute impossibility, so if anything can be done to help the periphary of the euro zone, help should be concntrated towards Spain which has always lived within its EU Treaty obligations and constraints!

Some excerpts from the linked report are quoted below so that the urgency of the coming crisis for Spain may be immediately obvious, even to readers whose income depends upon the, elsewhere obviously, terminally sick EU:

Spain's debt load is set to double from where it was when Europe's sovereign debt crisis began, eroding the economic advantages that distinguished it from the region's periphery and helped shield it from Greek contagion....

Investors give Spain a discount of just 31 basis points on borrowing for a decade compared with what they charge Italy, down from 200 basis points at the end of last year. Spain's 10- year yield is 5.25 percent, up 40 basis points since Feb. 1.

As three-year loans to banks by the European Central Bank underpin demand for government bonds, Spain has raised about 30 percent of its planned bond issuance for 2012, according to UBS AG. Still, the Treasury paid an average of 3.332 percent to sell three-year bonds at its most recent auction on Feb. 16, compared with 2.861 percent two weeks earlier, reflecting the 33 basis- point rise in yields on the existing 2015 bonds.


A 'Major' Moron, Head of fixed income at HSBC, on the BBC

Hear the mind-blowing stupidity from Steven Major, Head of Fixed Income at a major international bank, HSBC, talking on the BBC this morning, brilliantly illustrating why our money has become practically worthless while talking about his optimism on the Greek, Portuguese and Euro crisis, from this link!


Sunday, February 19, 2012

Likely Bailout framework emerging if Greek deal is attainable.

4Traders has a report that seems well-informed on the likely trend for tomorrow's Ecofin meeting, the link is here and the following is the main items affecting Greece. Read the entire link to grasp the magnitude of the entire mess!

Under the deal, Greece will have around 100 billion euros of its obligations written off via a debt restructuring involving private-sector holders of Greek government bonds.
The private sector - mostly banks and insurance companies - will swap bonds they hold for longer-dated Greek securities that pay a lower coupon, resulting in a real 70 percent reduction in the value of the assets.
The bond exchange is expected to launch on March 8 and complete three days later, Greece said on Saturday. That means a 14.5-billion-euro bond repayment due on March 20 would be restructured, allowing Greece to avoid default.
The vast majority of the funds in the 130-billion-euro program will be used to finance the bond swap and to ensure that Greece's banking system remains stable: 30 billion euros will go to "sweeteners" to get the private sector to sign up to the swap, and 23 billion will go to recapitalize Greek banks.
A further 35 billion will allow Greece to finance the buying back of the bonds, and 5.7 billion will go to paying off the interest accrued on the bonds being traded in.
The overall objective is to reduce Greece's debts from 160 percent of GDP to around 120 percent by 2020 - the figure and timeframe that the IMF, ECB and the European Commission, together known as the troika, have established as sustainable.


A Primer on the Euro Breakup

The report from Variant Perception is a recommended read and is available from the Acting Man web site.

UPDATE 22/2/12 1010 GMT. We recommend you visit the Variant Perception blog as follows:

The paper stresses that the breakup of a currency block is not that unusual and gives much historical background and charts. Its conclusion, for those not wishing to delve too deeply into complicated economics (such as myself,) may be found on page 50 of the pdf file. The sub-heading to the report's main title, which was also used for the headline to this post, is tellingly:
Default, Exit and Devaluation as the Optimal Solution

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Tricky sums for the Euro Group on second Greek Bailout tomorrow.

Austria's Finance Minister, Maria Fekter, as if she were explaining complicated physics for a kindergarten, has put it all very simply this afternoon, when asked if Greece will get its deal, according to Reuters, linked here, replied:

"I don't think there is a majority to go a different way because a different way is enormously arduous and costs lots and lots of money."
A bold statement indeed for a country already on warning that its triple A credit rating is in danger. It appears she believes that Greek Bailout 2.0 does not itself involve huge amounts of cash, or as she quaintly phrases it "lots and lots of money"!

It is hugely complex and probably impossible to know where all the eventual liabilities might end, so let us assume the ESM is the present intention of the parties as to how any extra obligations for Greece, taken this coming week might land. (After all that agreement was supposedly only signed this month, that version is linked here).

Austria holds 194,838 shares out of 7,000,000 in this ESM disaster, which represents a mere 2.77%. Nevertheless if the reported figure now required by Greece is truly around the €145 Billion level, that is still "lots and lots" of beer money (€4 Billion) for your average Austrian. Of course mere peanuts when considering that France, already having lost one of its three A's as a result of this Euro fiasco, holds 1,427,013 shares of the total 7,000,000, almost eight times Austria's share, ( ie a whopping €29.6 Billion), making the wine drinking typical Frenchman potentially liable for crates worth of St Emilion or Gevrey Chambertin, depending upon whether his taste once was for Claret or for Burgundy!

Of course the good news all round, following dinner in Berlin on Friday of last week, is that President Sarkozy's ex-Finance Minister, who was in on the deal that began this merry go round, Mme Christine Lagarde, in her new job as MD of the IMF might chip in 10% on behalf of the rest of the world, bringing the costs to Austria to only €3.25 Billion and €23.9 Billion for the French, this calculation also assuming the money committed can be kept at the original estimate of €130 Billion.

How long can electorates be expected to believe that none of this money will ever fall due?

An interesting briefing paper from the EU dated last July, when the ESM was first proposed, is linked here, for those in need of an entertaining read and quiet Sunday afternoon chortle!

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Nick Cohen on the EU being a failure of decency! Recommended!

The entire "Comment is free" of today's Observer/Guardian is linked here. Try to read it all, I will try to capture the flavour with some brief quotes:

Greece has invaded no one and committed no crimes against humanity. Yet the EU, which boasts that solidarity is its founding principle, is forcing it into destitution and chaos.....

Currency union is – self-evidently – a disaster. Admitting that would bring a loss of face too great for the European elites to bear.....

Europe does not seem pleasant, prosperous or peaceful today. When historians write about the end of its postmodern utopia, they will note that it was not destroyed by invading armies anxious to plunder Europe's wealth or totalitarian ideologues determined to install a dictatorship, but by politicians and bureaucrats, who appeared to be pillars of respectability, but turned out to be fanatics after all.


Britain's Corrupt Civil Service - 55,000 MOD Clerks get bonuses!

The Telegraph has the full report on the the payments within the almost entirely non-functioning MOD, 55,000 pen-pushers in total out of a huge payroll of 83,000 with one actually receiving £85,831. The following quote makes clear that this rotten sickness is endemic across the whole of Whitehall and therefore probably the entire government machine:

In the past year 56 senior officials - those in the highest civil service grades - shared £505,000, averaging £9,000 each. Junior staff were handed a total of £37.9 million, typically taking home £697 - meaning 54,375 of its employees received bonuses, a level in contrast to ministers’ intention that bonuses are not given routinely.
The highest level of bonuses were awarded to the Department of Work and Pensions, whose employees scooped £51 million. The Department of Transport paid out £9.2million, the Foreign Office £6.4 million and the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs £2.3 million. The Department for Education spent £1.9 million on bonuses, the Department for Health £1.7 million, the Cabinet Office £1.3million and the Department for Innovation and Skills £1.1million.

Every pound of bonus money paid to a civil servant who is an indexed linked, Government-funded, pension recipient is a direct kick in the teeth to UK tax payers! Worse, every penny of bonus paid to a civilian employee of the MOD, given the facts on servicemen and women having been sent into battle under-funded and ill-equipped, is akin to rewarding those with such much spent blood on their hands!


Schäuble to decide who earns "what" across the entirety of Europe!

I imagine many will read the above headline and assume this blogger has finally gone completely OTT in his suspicions of the motives of those involved in the demented EU Project.

Not So! I have a direct quote put out by the state broadcaster of the German Government, of which Wolfgang Schäuble is Finance Minister, linked here, with the following in its penultimate paragraph:

"The Greek minimum wage is being lowered to roughly Spain's level," he said. "What's more, what should people in Eastern European or Baltic European countries think - when their minimum wages are still considerably lower and yet they are playing a part in supporting Greece?"

Note especially the way the statement has been phrased, no sugestion of mutual agreement, negotiation, nor even that other parties may have had some input into what is now occurring! Just the blunt cold clear fact "The Greek minimum wage IS BEING LOWERED..."

Had we not all hoped that Europe had been rid of this kind of arrogance. Was that not the supposed intention behind the EU for which 27 nations have sacrificed their democracies?

"We're All Greeks Now"

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Saturday, February 18, 2012

Show your support for the people of Greece

Please visit this link to show your support for the people of Greece. Although partly in French and Greek it is nevertheless packed full of background:

We're All Greeks Now!



Deutsche Welle debates default by deceit.

A complicated series of different ruses are debated in this latest offering from the German state broadcaster, Deutsche Welle, while seeking to avoid a credit event, or paying out on the CDS purchased to protect investors from the event that the article discusses provoking.

A surreal experience to read.

It gives a fascinating insight into the murky minds of those supposedly responsible for our money!

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Get set to book your cheap holiday in Greece!

At last some cheery news to post on this so far doom laden weekend. Mary Ellen Synon, advises in her blog, in the Daily Mail, to get ready to book your cheap holiday to Greece once the moment of default finally arrives, read it from here.


A British MP has recognised the very real and growing danger!

Steve Baker MP, on his blog, linked here, has mentioned a bond bust, I quote his post in full.  May I add "About time too":

"The UK money supply tripled between 1997 and 2010, widening wealth inequality, raising house prices out of the reach of young people and reorienting the economy towards the City, the South East and housing. Arguably, such an inflation will have destroyed real capital too. Sadly, this chronic inflation has been going on for 40 years since the Bretton Woods monetary system broke down.
The bust is now producing unemployment and hopelessness. The measures taken by the central banks and the Government, including ultra-low interest rates, quantitative easing and soon “credit easing” are creating further problems including increased disincentives to saving, atrocious terms on annuities for those about to retire and further distortions to the structure of the economy. And all the while the Bank of England’s QE programme is propping up bond prices to keep long term interest rates low, we risk a bursting of that bond market bubble and a further economic shock."


How money is made/created - Ben Dyson

Part two of the video is linked here. Ben Dyson is in Newcastle this afternoon.

More information is available from here.


Home repossessions, the ticking time bomb under the West!

This blog gave up making what it believed were constructive suggestions regarding the property price crisis long ago, as nothing was being done. Eventually something has to change, the self-delusion that appears to have most of Britain in its grip must be seen for what it is. Across the West there are signs of things coming to a head:

Reuters on Ireland, Spanish repossessions on BBC TV News , Daily Mail on Repossessions and walkaways Beverly Hills style while a new EU directive seems set to accelerate this process, read here.

The picture in the headline spread of the Irish Independent this morning pinpoints the intent behind what occurred and provides a clue as to where the responsibility probably lies.

The article, linked here, has the following chilling introduction soon to be repeated elsewhere is my forbidding guess:

BANKS are telling thousands of families struggling to restructure mortgages they will have to cut back on health insurance, private education, groceries and Sky Sports before any deal can be done.

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Two Grave Postings on Orphans of Liberty

I have already re-tweeted these items but they are of such crucial interest that must not be left like that.

Prodicus writing under the heading "Ancestral voices" is followed on OoL by James Higham with a much linked posting " "Has it started" best read it in that order by clicking on the postings' titles.

There is nothing I feel necessary to add at this stage, except perhaps in passing, probably co-incidentally, that the deadline for nominations for the post of head of the World Bank is chosen as the 23rd March. Also perhaps of significance is the fact that the announcement that the IMF will only cough up 10% towards the next Greek bailout, given last evening in Berlin, is everywhere ignored by the media, other than in the sources I provided when tweeting and blogging on the implications of such a move last evening!

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Friday, February 17, 2012

Who will now pay for any second Greek Bailout?

The timing of the announcement that there is no real money available for Greece, just before the US markets were closing for a three day weekend, seems at one with the whole tone of underlying dishonesty which surrounds the EU project.

The fact the news was delivered by Mme Lagarde in Berlin somehow adds even mor piquancy.

The Wall Street Journal report is here.

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Lagarde in Berlin announces IMF to slash funds for Greece!

In a speech in Berlin this evening, Mme Christine Lagarde, the head of the IMF (also former French Finance Minister, hugely culpable for the events of May 2010 at ECOFIN) announced that the IMF would slash its contributions to any second Greek Bail Out to a mere 10% of the total.

In other words this would reduce the IMF share to a mere €13 Billion for the second package if kept at only €130 Billion, compared to an IMF input of €30 Billion for the smaller first rescue funds since wasted.

The report is linked here.

The remaining Triple A nations of the Euro Group will supposedly be expected to stump-up for the shortfall, likely losing them their triple A rating - no wonders rumours of a 23rd March default for Greece get stronger by the hour!

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Nigel Farage warns of the dangers for Europe from the power-crazed EU!

Treasures from the threads - Number 72 - Mad Mervyn King

I have chosen the following comment which was in response to a sub-posting on Acting Man, linked here, titled:
"Uncle Mervyn, the Lunatic Running the UK Funny Money Farm"

I wonder about the timing of these bank downgrades, there are a lot of rumors swirling now that Greece will indeed default within the next month or so….
I kind of expect that a default in this case will be telegraphed because unlike the crash where the bankers were keeping there cards close to their vests and there was a lot of opacity in this case a LOT of people are in on the negotiations so its bound to leak out if a decision is made…..and of course a default will be a decision.
So seeing Moodys waving the downgrade stick recently and now hearing these rumors, I wonder if something is indeed imminent.
Then you have to wonder what happens with CDS?
JPM and BOA moved a trillion or so in derivatives into the FDIC portion of the bank awhile back to “allay the fears of European counter parties” was the quote I recall saw….are depositors funds at these two rat holes now vaporizable as MF Globals customer funds proved out to be?
What a mess!

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Cameron sells out Somerset to France

The Prime Minister, David Cameron, has determined that Britain will no longer have an independent nuclear power plant building capability and by doing so has effectively sold out Somerset and three other key nuclear locations to the French.

Read here and here. A Comment to one of the linked articles is as follows:

By Dr Tim Fox, Head of Energy at the Institution of Mechanical Engineers

Statement: Although some relatively small contracts are to be awarded to Rolls Royce and BAM Kier, it looks increasingly likely that the vast majority of the contracts involved in the manufacture and construction of the new nuclear reactors at Hinkley Point and Sizewell will go to France rather than the UK. An outcome the Institution predicted in it Nuclear New Build report two years ago.

The construction of the nuclear power stations at Hinkley Point and Sizewell will directly and indirectly create about 10,000 jobs. The UK has the ability to undertake about 70% of the engineering and construction work of a new nuclear power plant. We must ensure that we do not miss out on an opportunity to develop UK industry, skills and jobs with the roll-out of the country s new nuclear power stations.

Update 1500 GMT More details on the latest Tory Betrayal of Britain to France from EurActiv linked here.


The Troika are now trashing Portugal

The markets and broadcast media seem much concerned with Greece, understandably enough, but Portugal and Spain must not slip from view. This is a pan-European crisis and all member states will soon be disastrously affected in one way or another.

The Seattle Times, has a report from yesterday from Portugal, linked here. The following is how the article begins:

Portugal's jobless rate jumped to a record 14 percent at the end of last year, the national statistics agency reported Thursday in the latest grim sign of the bailed-out country's worsening economic problems.
The unemployment rate is the highest since authorities began compiling comprehensive national registers in 1950

That is quite frankly absolutely astounding for any of us who knew Portugal during or immediately after the overthrow of its last dictator in the mid-nineteen seventies, read here. Who could have guessed that the EU would bring that country so low, does President Barroso ever summon up the courage to nowadays return to the homeland he has helped to wreck?


Daniel Hannan MEP on Greece for TV viewers in the USA


N.B. the Upton Sinclair quote:

It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends upon his not understanding it.

This in relation to the army of those who now depend on the continuance of the EU


Who is watching out for England?

Robin Tilbrook, of the English Democrats, asks a very important question on his blog this morning, linked here:

Who is trying to achieve a positive result for the People of England - except the English Democrats?

To make the point that we English urgently need someone to fight for England's interests - have a look at this edited statement:- "The Scottish Affairs Commons Select Committee is (looking at Scotland's Independence Referendum and is) calling on the Secretary of State for Scotland to .... achieve a positive result for the people of Scotland."

Nothing wrong in that you may say - except no-one in Parliament is doing the same for us and 'trying to achieve a positive result for the People of England!'
Help us do so!!

Read more from here.

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A Macbeth tragedy adapted for the EU

Act 1
 Scene 111  
A blasted Heath
Thunder,   enter the three witches....

Macbeth - Van Rompuy
Banqou - Barroso
Three witches - EU/ECB/IMF Troika

Van Rompuy as the Thane of Glamis will fufill the prophecy regarding Cawdor, to become Head of the Euro Group, but by slaying Duncan, played by democracy, will the ultimate prize of EU Emperor, dangled before him by Merkozy, playing Lady Macbeth, ever really materialise or be worthwhile?

Fair is foul, and foul is fair:
Hover through the fog and filthy air.

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