Emmanuel Macron is the fourth French president to have been in office during Angela Merkel’s 12-year tenure as German chancellor, and so it was with a faintly indulgent smile that she greeted the Europe Union’s new young pretender as he arrived in Berlin on Monday. The mismatch in experience was so apparently obvious that Mrs Merkel felt it necessary to say in advance that she would not behave like a “know-it-all” to the new occupant of the Elysee, but would listen carefully to his vision for France. Such protestations of modesty on Mrs Merkel's part are to be expected, but they cannot conceal the reality that if France wants to rekindle its post-war partnership with Germany, it needs to demonstrate it is committed to reforms.
Thursday, May 18, 2017
Monday, February 20, 2017
There is now a growing band of politicians, entrepreneurs and policy strategists who argue that a basic income could potentially hold the solution to some of the big problems of our time. Some of these new converts have alighted upon the basic income as an answer to our fragmenting welfare state. They point to the increasingly precarious nature of today’s labour market for those in low-paid, low-skilled work: growing wage inequality, an increasing number of part-time and temporary jobs, and rogue employers routinely getting away with exploitative practices.
This grim reality collides with an increasingly punitive welfare state. Our welfare system was originally designed as a contributory system of unemployment insurance, in which workers put in during the good times, and took out during temporary periods of unemployment. But a big chunk of welfare spending now goes on permanently supporting people in jobs that don’t pay enough to support their families. As the contributory principle has been eroded, politicians have sought to create a new sense of legitimacy by loading the system with sanctions that dock jobseeker benefits for minor transgressions.
Thursday, December 22, 2016
European Union council president, Donald Tusk, called on the authorities in Poland to respect the constitution as a standoff between the opposition and the ruling party continued. Polish opposition leaders called for days of anti-government protests and pledged to keep blocking parliament’s main hall after being accused of trying to seize power illegally by a government they say has violated the constitution. Several thousand people protested in Warsaw and other cities after police broke up a blockade of the parliament building in Warsaw in the early hours. “Following yesterday’s events in parliament and on the streets of Warsaw … I appeal to those who have real power for respect and consideration of the people, constitutional principles and morals,” Tusk told a news conference in Poland’s western city of Wrocław....Protesters had blocked all exits from the parliament on Friday after the opposition said PiS politicians illegally passed the budget for next year by moving the vote outside of the main chamber of parliament. The protest marked the biggest political standoff in years in EU member Poland and the sharpest escalation of the conflict between the opposition and the ruling Law and Justice (PiS) party since it came to power in October 2015. The police attempted in the early hours of Saturday to remove protesters by grabbing them and pulling them aside, but stopped as new protesters arrived at the scene. The police also called on protesters blocking the parliament to disperse, saying on loudspeakers that they might otherwise use force
Saturday, June 25, 2016
The European Commission is set to present a new draft of its data-exchange pact with the US, the Privacy Shield, in early July. EU justice commissioner Vera Jourova told EUobserver in a recent interview that the most contentious issues had been agreed by Washington and Brussels. These concerned access to data by US security services and bulk collection of people’s personal information. “We reached an accord on more precise listing of cases when bulk collection can occur and a better definition of how our American partners understand the difference between bulk collection which may be justified and mass surveillance without any purpose, which is not tolerable”, she said. “These specific points have already been finished and put down in written form”. The shield is to replace the 15 year-old Safe Harbour pact that failed to protect the privacy of EU nationals whose data was transferred to firms, such as Facebook, based in the US. The EU Court of Justice (ECJ) invalidated the harbour treaty last year, due in part, to revelations by Edward Snowden, a former US intelligence contractor, of mass-scale US snooping on Europeans. The EU commission and the US, after two years of talks, proposed the shield treaty as a replacement earlier this year. But the EU's main regulatory body on privacy, the Article 29 Data Protection Working Party, criticised the draft in the strongest possible terms. The body is composed of EU states’ national data supervisors and EU officials. Isabelle Falque-Pierrotin, its chair, said in April that the shield would fail to protect people's data. “The possibility that is left in the shield and its annexes for bulk collection … is not acceptable," she said. She sent the draft back to the EU commission, which is now set to present the updated version. That text becomes binding the moment it is adopted by the 28 commissioners, with no subsequent input from the EU Council or MEPs.
Friday, March 4, 2016
The British pound saw the biggest decline against the dollar since March 2009, after London mayor Boris Johnson, one of the most popular politicians in the country, said he would start a campaign in favor of the United Kingdom leaving the European Union (Brexit) in the referendum scheduled in June. The pound lost 1.7% at 12:01, on the New York market, to 1.4156 dollars. The pound had earlier lost 1.9% - its biggest decline since March 9th, 2009. All throughout yesterday, the pound fell to 1.4058 dollars - the weakest exchange rate since March 18th, 2009. The British currency weakened against all major currencies yesterday, after having gained significantly at the end of last week. Valentin Marinov, a strategist with "Credit Agricole" SA, states, according to Bloomberg: "The pound is dropping because the agreement achieved by British PM David Cameron in the EU summit (ed. note: - Friday) has not removed the fears concerning a Brexit. The fact that prominent members of the Conservative Party have announced that they are going to be campaigning for Britain's exit from the EU has increased investors' worries over such a possibility". Since the beginning of the year, the pound has lost 4.1%. On Friday night, David Cameron has achieved a special agreement that grants the United Kingdom "a special status in the European Union", but has announced that he has not abandoned the idea of a referendum concerning the United Kingdom's exit from the EU, and set the date of the poll to June 23rd.
Thursday, March 3, 2016
Following the capital deficit of almost 8 billion Euros, the regulator of the Austrian financial market (FMA) has imposed a moratorium on the payment of the debts of Heta on March 1st, 2015, which will expire on May 31st, 2016. "The Finance Ministry has said that Heta is not insolvent, and the guarantees offered by Carinthia and the federal government for Heta's debts will not be affected by the decision", Reuters wrote at the time. The suspension of the payments of Heta has been justified by the need to draw up a resolution plan, which would ensure equal treatment of all creditors, according to the press release of the FMA. Back in 2015, the Austrian Finance Minister said that the bail-in procedure will also be applied to creditors, as the Bank Recovery and Resolution Directive (BRRD) was transposed into the country's national legislation and came into effect on January 1st, 2015. Now, honoring the government's debt doesn't seem to matter in Vienna anymore, and judging by his own statements, the minister of finance is convinced that the financial situation of the country and its borrowing costs will not be affected. Unfortunately, reality, in particular the one that is giving the European authorities nightmares since the beginning of the crisis, does not "bend" to political will. Frances Coppola further writes that "Carinthia's insolvency will lead to a heavy fiscal adjustment for Austria, amid an increase in borrowing costs", and the "value of no risk investments will see a massive drop, because government can no longer be considered safe". "The implications, not only for the financial stability of Austria but for that of Europe as well, are terrible", the Forbes journalist concludes. If we also add in the uncertainties concerning the application of the bail-in framework, it is almost certain that Europe will need bigger crises than the Brexit and the refugees' "cover" the growing cracks in its financial foundation.
Wednesday, March 2, 2016
The Austrian authorities have taken yet another step on the mined field of financial "stability" of the so-called hard core of the Eurozone. Amid the nearing of the deadline for the moratorium set on the payment of the debts of Heta Asset Resolution, the bad bank set up for the takeover of the non-performing land of Hypo Alpe-Adria, the creditors have been presented with the buyback terms for the bonds guaranteed by the land of Carinthia. Their total par value is 11 billion Euros, and the "offer" includes the payment of 75% of the par value for senior bonds and 30% of the value of subordinated bonds, which means a total loss of approximately 3.2 billion Euros for lenders. "Creditors that refuse the offer could wait for as long as ten years for a ruling of the judicial system in their favor", said Hans-Joerg Schelling, the Austrian finance minister, according to Bloomberg. Schelling further said that "the offer is excellent", according to Bloomberg, and creditors "should be rational and accept it". For the buyback of the Heta bonds, Austria has set up a special investment vehicle, Kaerntner Ausgleichszahlungs-Fonds (The Fund for the Payment of Compensations of Carinthia). Unfortunately for the authorities in Vienna, the notion of "rational" is understood differently by creditors. "What the Austrian authorities have done is unprecedented in the developed world: they have announced a figure that they consider acceptable and they have asked the creditors to accept the offer", the partner of Swiss company Gold Partners AG who owns 200 million Euros worth of Heta bonds, told Bloomberg. The list of creditors that oppose the offer includes far bigger names however, such as German banks Commerzbank AG and NordLB, as well as PIMCO, the American investment fund manager owned by Allianz AG. Bloomberg estimates show that the exposure of those who have rejected the proposal of the Austrian authorities is about 5 billion Euros and represents approximately 45% of the total debt, as the terms of the offer are non-negotiable, and its acceptance by two thirds of the creditors involves its unconditional application and for the other creditors as well.
Tuesday, March 1, 2016
The European Parliament backs the monetary policy carried out by the European Central Bank to guarantee price stability but warns that its effect won't last without structural reforms, budgetary discipline and productive investments in the Member States. Moreover, the risks of the ECB's unconventional measures need to be monitored carefully, the European Parliament cautions in its Annual Report on the European Central Bank. Tom Vandenkendelaere MEP, Shadow Rapporteur and Member of the European Parliament's Economic and Monetary Affairs Committee, calls for a multi-tiered approach to stimulate growth and job creation: "We support the ECB's efforts to increase inflation to under but close to 2%, and its policy to increase the supply of money is slowly yielding results. However, we should not be blind to the risks of this approach and carefully monitor for negative side effects. In addition, Member States should deliver on their part and carry through the necessary reforms and productive investments to boost economic growth and employment."
Tom Vandenkendelaere is appreciative of the ECB's efforts to increase transparency and maintain close ties with the European Parliament: "Thanks to the ECB's efforts on greater transparency, most central banks are now in the habit of explaining important monetary decisions to the wider public."
Thursday, February 25, 2016
The European Commission has cut its forecast for economic growth in the eurozone this year. It has cut its prediction for the 19-country bloc in 2016 to 1.7% from the 1.8% it had forecast in November. That figure would still mark a moderate increase from the figure of 1.6% in 2015. The Commission said government spending had been unexpectedly high because of the number of migrants arriving in Europe, which had boosted GDP. But it warned that the crisis posed "major political challenges" that could undercut growth if not properly handled. And vice-president Valdis Dombrovskis said: "Europe's moderate growth is facing increasing headwinds, from slower growth in emerging markets such as China, to weak global trade and geopolitical tensions in Europe's neighborhood." "It is important to continue structural reforms that can help our economies grow, withstand shocks in the future and improve job opportunities for our population." The Commission cut its inflation forecast for this year from 1.0% to 0.5%, even further below the European Central Bank's target of about 2%. Consumer prices fell by 0.3% in 2015, largely as a result of the fall in energy prices.
Monday, February 22, 2016
A senior Romanian government source, who also insisted on anonymity, added: “We are analysing this proposal. Changes like this have been considered a red line for us until now so we are debating what to do and how to react.” He said Romania would “not want to be the one blocking a compromise which would lead to Britain leaving the EU. But we have to analyse whether it passes our red line.” Some commentators argued that eastern Europe should swallow welfare cuts for a greater good. “In the case of a Brexit, the EU would be weakened, economically but also politically towards Russia … and more focused on the euro, which would be of detriment to countries (such as Poland) that have not adopted the single currency,” Tomasz Bielecki argued in the liberal Polish daily Gazeta Wyborcza. “For that reason, the government … needs to be willing to compromise on the question of migrant workers. It is better to forego certain benefits than face Brexit.”... Poland’s president, Andrzej Duda, said Warsaw – a vocal opponent of any measures that might discriminate against its citizens working in Britain – broadly approved of measures to strengthen sovereignty and bolster EU members’ ability to stop legislation, but was looking carefully at the proposal to suspend in-work benefits for migrant workers. “This is a preliminary deal; let us see how the negotiations unfold,” Duda told the TVP Info news channel. “But free movement of workers and services is a fundamental value of the EU. There is a clause saying that in the case of a sudden influx of wage migrants, some benefits could be curbed. We will see what the interpretation [of the clause] is.”..The European council president Donald Tusk’s plan, which must be accepted by all 28 EU member states, seeks to address Britain’s demand for reforms to stem immigration and boost British sovereignty. It includes welfare reforms that are controversial in several east European countries, including Poland, which have sizeable populations of migrant workers in the UK. The Polish foreign minister, Witold Waszczykowski, told a press conference with his Hungarian counterpart on Wednesday that both countries aimed to present a joint statement on the UK reform package in Budapest on Monday. While sentiment towards the proposal was generally positive, Waszczykowski said, and “we share the UK’s push to respect the will of sovereign countries more, we must not see any solutions that discriminate against some groups of people”. Up to 1.3 million Poles are thought to live in Britain.
Sunday, February 21, 2016
The f*cking psychopaths running our economies are hellbent on leading us to war. We should have put the whole establishment against the wall in 08 when we still had some power. Now they will be putting us all up against the wall. As I said it will be a miracle if this decade doesn't end with a major conflict. All of the financial world is hocus pocus and the digital age was the ultimate magic wand to send it in overdrive. It's all bullshit and we all know it. Yet these financial wizards, these insincere quacks preach at the high altar of capitalism and we are forced to take their mass. Our politicians sit at the front row of this mass and nod their heads like obedient dogs. Anybody who votes for the mainstream political parties is a vote for this corrupt Kabbala. Mainstream parties always belittle the fringe parties as incompetent nutjobs followed by the media who always paint them as unviable. More importantly they the establishment always cynically point out that there is no point voting for a small party by stating they will have no impact on the stream of general opinion. We are all doomed by our feckless complacency...eat the shit of the 'celeb age'whilst we rob you of everything. The greatest freedom the liberals have won for us is the freedom to be ignorant of the reality which betrays us.
Friday, January 8, 2016
Relatively rich societies as a whole do not benefit from importing cheap labor from the third world. The rich and powerful in those affluent societies benefit as the immigration drives down the price of the labor they must employ to maintain their positions. Everything from cleaners to gardeners to nannies to whatever is all made cheaper relatively speaking for the established elites. They support the influx for that reason. The only exception being the left which supports it because it hates the West and the Western working classes and would do anything to cause them harm. It is a no-brainer that this is not done for the majority already there. There are many indices comparing countries for quality of life, opportunity, happiest and so on. They are put out by the UN, OECD, IMF and other organisations both public and private. The nations that always top these lists - Norway, Australia, New Zealand, Denmark, Finland and a couple of others - all have one thing in common. Relatively low populations. Aside from Germany no country with a large population even makes it into the top ten on most of these indices and Germany only manages it for a few. The correlation between a smaller stable population and wealth and income equality and general quality of life is obvious and the reasons don't need explaining. It just doesn't suit some to have things go down this path so they shut down debate with abuse and slurs. Horror of horrors, imagine a country with rising wages for everyone as people must be paid significant sums to do even the most menial jobs. It would push wages up right along the chain. Crikey, you might see the position of the rich and other elites eroded with respect to the rest of the population. What a terrible thought. A smaller population supported by automation and doing things smarter with better education for all and spreading the wealth evenly and maybe true democracy where those people are asked if they want to get involved in a foreign war far away. A sickening thought if you are a Cameron, Blair, Miliband, Corbett and the like. They would not have the power they crave and love in such a world. Others would not have the wealth they love. The West can do nothing to help with over-population in the second and third world. There are just too many people and they are still having too many babies. The answer to their problems must come from within or nature will sort it out for them. I visited the Foundling Museum in Coram's Fields over Christmas. It is a lovely place - but chronicles the horrors caused by the population explosion in Britain in the 18th and 19th centuries as people moved into cities and stopped dying like flies of poverty and disease - and the cities began to look like Third World cities do now - overcrowded slums full of factory workers. The population of Britain and Ireland in 1700 was probably around 6.5 million, estimated from parish records etc. The first Census in 1801 recorded 18.5 million - so it tripled in 100 years. In 1901 it was 45 million, despite mass emigration during the 19th century. And poverty was still rife, despite mass emigration. The growth has slowed down somewhat - but is still headed for 75 million by 2050. This is not a fluctuation back and forth. This is an inexorable, unsustainable, rise which can never ever be catered for even if we continue to access the resources of other countries as well as our own. It was only ever catered for via mass emigration - i.e. overflowing of millions to America and Australasia. (The two World Wars had little or no effect by the way.) That emigration continues to this day as young Britons are forced to choke back their tears and emigrate to Oz or New Zealand - a new series of "Wanted Down Under" starts tomorrow on BBC1. Yet Down Under must be filling up in turn by now, surely?
Thursday, January 7, 2016
" The world's stuttering economic recovery will continue to disappoint next year, the head of the IMF has warned. Rising US interest rates, a Chinese slowdown and disappointing world trade will all weigh on growth prospects in 2016, said Christine Lagarde. The IMF estimates the global economy will expand by 3.6pc next year, but Ms Lagarde - writing in German business daily Handelsblatt - said growth would be disappointing and uneven."At last an official acknowledgement that the German austerity forced on Europe for the last seven years has been a terrible mistake caused by the stubborn and stupid insistence of the messianic Merkel and her mad crippled adviser Schaubel. Just as the US and UK successful economic policies of the last few years are being reined in with small interest rises the ECB are printing €trillions of euros far too late and the IMF is in a panic having now changed position by 180o. When has Germany ever had any policy that does not suit its selfish interests and wrecks Europe every time in the process? No wonder Merkel is out of the headlines for a change. She should hang her head in shame and push Schaubel way out of the picture. Best Germany should leave Europe and take its satellite slaves with it...well... "The IMF has calculated that emerging market companies have "over-borrowed" by $3 trillion in the last decade, reflecting a quadrupling of private sector debt between 2004 and 2014." "Any "failed normalisation" of interest rates and market conditions would wipe 3pc from the world's economic output over the next two years,according to the Fund's financial stability report." Ah, so we should keep the 'accommodative monetary policy' that allowed this to happen, because we screwed up in the 'accommodative monetary policy' that let it happen. Who's responsible for overlooking all this? Ah, that would be you Christine, would it? Never mind, my advice is start pointing to it now and try and thereby distance yourself from it.... Ah again, I see we have already...
Tuesday, January 5, 2016
The people that run the EU will not allow it to fail. Look at Greece. The first real chance to stick two fingers up to Brussels, but ultimately, the Greek politicians bottled it under threats and blackmail from the EU. The same will happen in Spain. The Front National was shafted in France by a combination of the two major parties in France fixing the electoral system and the EU scaremongering the French public. Cameron has not bottled it, because he has never tried to stand up to the EU in the first place. The EU will prevail. At the first sign of any serious unrest, pressure will be applied behind the scenes on the respective government to send troops onto the streets to restore order if necessary. The genie is out of the lamp and there is nothing we can do about it short of armed insurrection...The Traverling Circus of the EU Parliment.
(1) The most outlandish of the European Union’s excesses; a £130 million travelling circus that once a month sees the European Parliament decamp from Belgium to France.
Over the course of the weekend, some 2,500 plastic trunks will be loaded on to five lorries and driven almost 300 miles from Brussels to Strasbourg. In all, the EU admits that the monthly Strasbourg sitting, which lasts just four days, costs an additional £93 million a year. The Conservative Party in Europe, which is leading a campaign to abandon it, estimates the cost a little higher at £130 million, or about £928 million in the seven-year cycle of an EU budget.
(2) Treasury figures have shown that the annual cost of a MEP sitting in the EU
assembly is £1.79 million each a year, which is three times the cost of a Member of Parliament in the House of Commons. The European Parliament, with 766 MEPs, cost £1.3 billion in 2012 – expenditure that was shared across the EU's members with a share of the annual bill for British taxpayers of £170 million. In contrast, the combined cost of the House of Commons and House of Lords, with 650 MPs and around 720 active peers, was £494 million in the same period.
Part of the difference is salary: MEPs are considerably more highly paid than MPs, with a £80,000 per year, paid with low 23 per cent "community tax rates", compared with £66,396 for elected representatives in the Commons. But the big difference between MEPs and MPs is the generous, or even lavish, expenses and allowances – entitlements that are worth over £415,000 a year each. One allowance for parliamentary assistants to work in the Brussels or local office of an MEP is worth £213,000 a year.
(3) The European Union is accused of “breathtaking hypocrisy” for continuing to demand that David Cameron pays a £1.7 billion bill despite its own auditors failing to give a clean bill of health to more than £100 billion of spending by Brussels. According to the annual report of the European Court of Auditors, seen by The Telegraph, £5.5 billion of the EU budget last year was misspent because of
controls on spending that were deemed to be only “partially effective” by experts. The audit,published this morning, found that £109 billion out of a total of £117 billion spent by the EU in 2013 was "affected by material error”.It means that the Brussels accounts have not been given the all clear for 19 years running.
(4) What right has Brussels got to spend our taxes on feed us Lies on why we should stay in this broken EU, which does not serve the common person in the streets of the UK. Voters face being bombarded with pro-Europe propaganda in the months leading up to the referendum as there is no limit on how much Brussels can spend on efforts to keep Britain in the European Union, campaigners have warned. The European Commission has formed a task force in Brussels to oversee an
“information” campaign in the run-up to the in/out referendum, which is expected
to be held next year.
Saturday, January 2, 2016
The number of people forcibly displaced worldwide is likely to have "far surpassed" a record 60 million this year, mainly driven by the Syrian war and other protracted conflicts, the United Nations said on Friday. The estimated figure includes 20.2 million refugees fleeing wars and persecution, the most since 1992, the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) said in a report.
Nearly 2.5 million asylum seekers have requests pending, with Germany, Russia and the United States receiving the highest numbers of the nearly one million new claims lodged in the first half of the year, it said. "2015 is on track to see worldwide forced displacement exceeding 60 million for the first time - 1 in every 122 humans is today someone who has been forced to flee their homes," it said. The total figure at the end of 2014 was 59.5 million. An estimated 34 million people were internally displaced as of mid-year, about 2 million more than the same time in 2014. Yemen, where civil war erupted in March, reported the highest number of newly uprooted people at 933,500. "Never has there been a greater need for tolerance, compassion and solidarity with people who have lost everything," Antonio Guterres, U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees, said in a statement. Developing countries bordering conflict zones still host the lion's share of the refugees, the report said, warning about growing "resentment" and "politicization of refugees". The report, based on official figures as of mid-year before the influx of refugees and migrants crossing the Mediterranean to reach Europe peaked in October, extrapolates from trends to estimate the global total. Syria's civil war that began in 2011 has been the main driver of mass displacement, with more than 4.2 million Syrian refugees having fled abroad and 7.6 million uprooted within their shattered homeland as of mid-year, UNHCR said. Together, nationals of Syria and Ukraine, where a separatist rebellion in the east erupted in April 2014, accounted for half of the 839,000 people who became refugees in the first half of 2015, it said. Violence in Afghanistan, Somalia and South Sudan sparked large refugee movements, as well as fighting in Burundi, the Central African Republic, the Democratic Republic of Congo and Iraq. Voluntary returns - a measure of how many refugees can safely go back home - are at their lowest levels in more than three decades, with only 84,000 people returning by mid-year against 107,000 at the same time a year before, the UNHCR said. Many refugees will live in exile for years to come, it said. "In effect, if you become a refugee today your chances of going home are lower than at any time in more than 30 years."
Tuesday, December 29, 2015
Spain should be taken over by an newly independent Scotland and Russia should take over Germany. Australia should take control of the United States of America, with Norway taking control of Australia. Brazil should govern China, with England taking over Brazil. And England should be governed by Poland. There should be a one-world currency called 'Kossuth', named after the old Hungarian Soviet-era beer that took its name from Hungary's patriotic leader of the 19th century...All the mainstream parties in Spain are hopelessly corrupt. If Iglesias brings podemos into a coalition govt with the PSOE, his future will be counted in months, not years. BTW too much provincial left right bickering here. The real problem is Austrian School economics to which both the left and right adhere, especially in the France of president Flamby!!
Friday, December 25, 2015
"Transnational criminal networks can be effectively combatted through strategic cooperation at international level. The European Union cannot even imagine tackling terrorist threats without cooperating with international partners", said Alessandra Mussolini MEP, European Parliament Rapporteur on the Council implementing decision approving the conclusion of the Agreement on Strategic Cooperation in the fight against serious crime and terrorism between the United Arab Emirates and Europol, after today's vote in plenary. According to the Agreement, the cooperation will include exchange of information on results of strategic analyses, criminal investigation procedures, specialist knowledge, general situation reports, training activities, information on crime prevention methods and the provision of advice and support in individual criminal investigations.
The Rapporteur continued: "This Agreement is more necessary than ever today due to the fact that the United Arab Emirates is becoming a growing hub for economic and financial crime. Structured cooperation with this country will benefit the safety of European citizens who deserve our absolute support at this really critical time." "After the tragic events in Paris, the political Groups which were initially against this Agreement have understood that ideological prerequisites and matters of principle cannot compromise the European responsibility to guarantee the highest standards of security for our citizens. The European Parliament has not missed this chance to support an Agreement whose implementation will improve the safety of our citizens", she concluded.
Sunday, December 20, 2015
Controversial plans for an EU Border and Coast Guard force are to be set out on Tuesday - part of an EU drive to curb the record influx of migrants. Some national governments are wary of granting the EU new powers in such a sensitive area of sovereignty. The European Commission is proposing a force with a stronger mandate than the EU's current Frontex border teams. Poland says it will oppose any move to send in EU border guards without the host country's approval. Polish Foreign Minister Witold Waszczykowski said such powers "would mean that this would be an undemocratic structure, not controlled by the member states". But he said strengthening Frontex "is necessary in every sense"....Frontex - an EU agency based in Poland - is already poised to send border guards to Greece, where almost 800,000 migrants have arrived by sea this year. Most of them are refugees from Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan. Frontex says its role is to help enforce border controls, but the deployed officers work "under the command and control of the authorities" in the host country. The deployment on the Greek islands near Turkey will boost the number of land and sea patrols, meaning more migrants will be identified and properly registered, a Frontex statement said. Of those who have come ashore this year only one in five was intercepted by border guards, Frontex said.
Friday, December 18, 2015
There is no jobs growth. The total hours worked in the US economy is the same as 15 years ago and most of the other economic indicators have been going south for months. The Fed is trapped and there is no way they can raise rates other than by a purely token amount without sending the whole thing rapidly to the dogs; in fact a recession next year is odds even if the Fed does nothing. We will get Big Bust 2 within the next 18 months...THERE WILL BE NO RATE RISE! Yellen knows full well you can't taper a Ponzi, so unless Goldman Sachs has massively shorted the markets and ordered its central banker minions to hike rates to crash the markets, Yellen will come up with yet another in her endless list of excuses to punt yet again on a rate hike. THERE WILL BE NO RATE RISE. Period. It's not like the Fed has any credibility left to lose. ..According to some soothsayers, there will be a 0.15% Fed rise BUT....after New Year there will be some more easing, say....$50 Billion. This time around the money printing will be in subsidies for the middle income earners. If the FED does not do this there will be turmoil and public protests. The Obama admin does not want this, not after the California shootings and most probably some more in the Christmas holiday season. The Obama gov needs the support of the public NOW more than ever....The Fed exists solely to further enrich the already super-rich. That means facilitating the looting and asset-stripping of the "middle income earners" (a soon to be extinct class) as part of the Fed's "No Billionaire Left Behind" monetary policy. The Fed will NEVER subsidize or otherwise give a damn about "middle income earners," much less savers, pensioners, and non-speculators, with whom it is in a state of undeclared financial warfare...The whole casino economy is built around perceptions. There are no relations between economic fundamentals and the value of the stock markets or the amount of public and private debt. A simple lack of confidence or misplaced rumor can cause a panic among investors. And then there's the trillions of debts owed in US dollars by entities who don't use the U.S. dollar as there native currency., Yellen will not raise rates in the absence of some exogenous event, i.e. a phone call from Goldman Sachs or the bond market going haywire as "investors" belatedly realize Yellen & her central banker cohorts are going to inflate away all government and TBTF banker debts and liabilities.
Tuesday, December 15, 2015
The ominous edifice on Avenue de Cortenbergh has been identified as a suitable venue for a closed-door meeting of European leaders ahead of the next EU summit, scheduled for the middle of December. Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Lövfen and his Greek counterpart Alexis Tsipras are going to be present, as are French President François Hollande, Chancellor Angela Merkel, the leaders of the Benalux countries and the Austrian chancellor. So that the rest of the EU member states don't feel left out, European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker will also take a seat at the negotiating table. Once again, the subject of the meeting will be the refugee crisis and the fragile alliance that Merkel is currently relying on to bring the ongoing flow of migrants from the Middle East under control. Together with Turkey and a number of countries in the heart of Europe, Merkel is hoping to seal a complicated deal she recently agreed to with Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu at the last EU summit. Essentially, it calls for Europe to provide billions in aid to Turkey in exchange for Ankara doing all it can to prevent Syrian refugees from traveling onward to Europe. Once those conditions have been fulfilled, however, the plan calls for the EU to accept a contingent of Syrian refugees, the size of which would likely be several hundred thousand. The scheme even has a provisional name: Merkel's Chief of Staff Peter Altmaier recently referred to it in an interview with SPIEGEL as the "Coalition of the Willing."