Cyprus is absolutely the template for Europe now. It is just that the template is far worse than what is narrowly imagined.
It is not the small nation of Cyprus nor is it that the specifics of the criminality that was transacted in Cyprus which is any sort of template. This is not the center of the issue. It is what Cyprus means and the horrible implications of what took place.
I cannot issue a stern enough warning here. No words that I write will adequately embrace the transgression that has taken place in Cyprus. Any thought that you have that the Cyprus experience is a lone and isolated event that will not be repeated, in some form in the future, is going to be proven wrong. Continue reading
“Germany has created an accidental empire,” German sociologist Ulrich Beck said on March 25. In an interview with EUROPP editors Stuart Brown and Chris Gilson, the professor at both Munich University and the London School of Economics invoked the memory of the last “accidental empire,” Great Britain. But he stopped short of calling Germany a military power—which Britain was. Germany’s de facto empire has an economic power base, not a military one, he proposed.
In the turbulence of the ongoing European financial crisis, one nation has emerged from the storm as the clear leader of the Continent. For the third time in a century, Germany has set itself apart as the top dog in European economics and politics. The Berlin-led bailout of Cyprus proved that point in a tangible way.
That’s just the way it happened to turn out, some may argue. But is this true? Continue reading
Some think he’s still a comedian, however, he has it right in knowing that all roads in the European economic crisis lead to Berlin as it seeks to control Europe’s destiny for the fourth time.
In an interview with the German business newspaper Handelsblatt, Mr Grillo said: “The northern European countries are only holding onto us until their banks have recouped their investments in Italian sovereign bonds. Then they’ll drop us like a hot potato.” The comic-turned-political activist, who campaigned against austerity measures implemented by Prime Minister Mario Monti, compared the technocrat prime minister to “a bankruptcy trustee acting on behalf of the banks” and described his Five Star Movement as: “the French revolution – without the guillotine.”
He repeated his call for a referendum on Italian membership of the euro and insisted he was not anti-European, but a critic of the way the EU has evolved.
“I have only said we need a plan B. We need to ask ‘What has become of Europe? Why do we have no common tax or immigration policy? Why is only Germany getting richer?‘,” he said. Continue reading
Incredible Video: Beppe Grillo Dissects the Financial System… on 1998
First Greece was subjugated and forced to yield (still is) national sovereignty, now comes Portugal. One country at a time, the European continent is being captured via economic warfare. Be it the Troika or the EU itself, all roads lead back to Europe’s powerhouse, Berlin, and it’s Fourth Reich making the capture. With the Vatican undergoing a leadership transition and possible candidate elected this St. Patrick’s Day, we could likely soon see the revived Holy Roman Empire.
Little by little, the Portuguese state is going down in defeat. In April 2011, when the country got a loan of €78bn from the troika (EC, ECB and IMF) to avoid bankruptcy, it committed itself to privatisation. But under the leadership of Passos Coelho, a model student of the fiscal discipline demanded by the troika, the sell-off of the “crown jewels” – what’s left of them, that is – has sped up.
Losing control of their destiny
For the 80,000 or so inhabitants of Viana, like for the rest of the country, the powerful wave of privatisation is causing a lot of worry. “Some of these state enterprises are gems, others are junk buckets, but they’re all strategic assets. And we’re losing them forever,” worries Bernardo S Barbosa, head of the local weekly Aurora do Lima. The Socialist mayor, José Maria Costa, shares a growing national concern: the feeling that the country is losing its sovereignty. In a vast room at City Hall, this engineer by training reacts very angrily to the policy of the executive: “By taking away our public assets, which are so vital, to the benefit of foreign companies, and private interests at that, we’re losing control of our own destiny. I even fear that in the end it will affect our freedom and democracy.” Continue reading
After the cataclysms of two world wars and the communist collapse, are we again seeing a new wave of German immigrants in Poland? While this is hardly an exodus yet, Poland has become one of the favourite places where Germans relocate permanently. In 2006, Poland ranked fifth among such countries, and today more Germans settle in Poland than in Spain or France. According to the Federal Statistical Office (Destatis), 9,434 German passport holders settled in Poland only last year, making Poland the third most popular destination for Germans relocating abroad, now ahead of Austria and behind only Switzerland and the United States.
Only a few years ago, when someone in Germany said they were going to work in Poland, the usual reaction was one of astonishment. Today no one in Germany finds this strange. For unemployed Germans, especially from the former DDR, Poland represents an opportunity for getting a permanent job, and for young graduates it offers the prospect of a faster career track and being entrusted with more ambitious and responsible tasks.
Full article: The Germans are coming back to Poland (Presseurop)
The Fourth Reich has taken over Europe, according to Il Giornale, a right-wing Italian newspaper. In a headlining story last Friday, Alessandro Sallusti, the editor in chief for the paper, asserted that Italy is “no longer in Europe. It is in the Fourth Reich.”
These bold comments come in the wake of recent non-productive talks between Italy, Spain and the European Central Bank (ecb) over fiscal aid for the two struggling members of the eurozone. ecb President Mario Draghi has put pressure on Italy and Spain to formally apply for aid from the bank before any steps are taken to provide assistance. If either nation were to make a formal request, strict conditions would be enforced by the ecb in exchange for buying its bonds—strict conditions that would essentially put either nation at the mercy of the German-influenced ecb.
Germany is not making many friends at the moment, but frankly, it doesn’t need to. The euro is crumbling, Italy is in trouble, and there is only one place Europe can turn to. If Germany chooses to bail out indebted Europe, expect Germany to exact its full pound of flesh in return—and that means economic, if not more political, control. Although a crumbling Europe is a negative for Germany’s economy, Germany is taking full advantage of the crisis to consolidate its control over the continent.
Full article: ‘The Fourth Reich’ Has Arrived (The Trumpet)
The Eurozone can handle a Greek crash/exit. The Eurozone can handle a Spanish crash as well. However, when the crisis hits Italy, you can count the days (maybe even hours) before it collapses the US economy.
The euro zone is grappling with another dangerous phase of the financial crisis. This past Monday, Moody’s lowered the outlook on Germany‘s triple-A credit rating from stable to negative. On Tuesday, EU officials said Greece is unlikely to meet its obligations and will require further debt restructuring. What’s more, markets are increasingly wary of Italy’s fiscal situation.
Now, All Eyes On Spain
Yet it is Spain, Europe’s fourth-largest economy, that remains the focal point of the European debt crisis again this week. Interest rates on 10-year bond yields alarmingly have risen again above 7 percent. There is widespread concern that the country may require a full bailout. This is a scenario that the euro zone appears ill-equipped to handle.
Not Just Another Spanish Crisis
It must be remembered that this is not merely a Spanish crisis, nor is Spain another Greece. Just three years ago, the Spanish banking sector had received wide praise. During the darkest days of the global financial crisis, the Spanish banking sector was considered among the most solid of any rich country. So much so that in August 2009 the FDIC approved the sale of Guaranty Bank of Austin, Texas (the 12th largest bank failure in U.S. history) to BBVA Compas – the U.S. arm of Spain’s Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria SA (BBVA).
Full article: Spain: The Next Wave Of The Financial Crisis Arrives (International Business Times)
Great article, great insight:
But let’s make no mistake. The sovereign debt crisis is not over. Not in Europe, not in Japan, and not in the US. It is in a lull period. And don’t give me that old shibboleth, “The market is telling us that the crisis is over.” The market knows a lot less than many pundits believe. What did the market know in mid-2007? Not very much, although the warning signs were clear, at least to some of us.
Full article: There Will be Contagion (John Mauldin) (Note: Article is a .pdf file. Download link is below title.)