Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Cyprus Needs To Quit

Whatever happens the Cypriot people are going to be suffering for the next few years - just as they've been having an increasingly hard time in the last few. There's no avoiding the pain. But now is the time to see whether there are any Cypriot politicians with the balls to lead the country out of the Euro. Even better, the Cypriots should take the opportunity to leave the EU completely.

A Euro exit will mean that the newly resurrected Cypriot pound will be lower in value than the Euro. The value of people's savings will drop compared to the Euro, but that's unavoidable. While imports will be more expensive, it does mean that Cypriot exports will become cheap, and that tourism - the biggest sector of the economy outside banking - will become more attractive. In time the influx of tourists and the increase in exports will mean an increase in value for the Cypriot pound. And if banks have to fail, as seems likely, then that's what has to happen. Bleeding the people dry to keep the banks of life support ultimately does the economy no good.

Leaving the EU completely will also mean that Cyrpus would be in a better position regarding the influx of immigrants from Eastern Europe. It's a simmering issue in Cyrpus, which has had high rates of immigration from Romania, Bulgaria etc. It's precisely the issue which has given rise to the fascist Golden Dawn party in Greece, and the same thing could happen in Cyprus. The Greek Cypriot far-Right has never lost the desire for Enosis with Greece - a resurgent far-Right, whether it's Golden Dawn or some other local variant - will present even bigger problems in the future.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Huhne Down - Who Next?

I'll admit to a certain grim satisfaction in seeing Chris Huhne sentenced to eight months, I also think he's got off relatively lightly given the charges and the way he did everything in his power to deny the truth for so long. There are plenty in the blogosphere who are saying that Huhne should have been charged for crimes against the economy, the environment and science. That's true enough, but it misses the point that political class that Huhne (and Vicky Pryce come to that), remain firmly in control. The green agenda remains at the heart of political power across the western world, even though the scientific rationale is rapidly unravelling. So, given that, what can we do?

The answer is to attack the powers that be with every weapon available to us. And that means focusing on their areas of weakness, such as expenses, corruption, lying and cheating. It means using the law to bring down individual politicians for all of their transgressions. If we can't prosecute for the lies and hypocrisy implicit in their politics, we must prosecute for the lies and hypocrisy in their personal lives and activities.

Remember, Al Capone was brought down not for extortion, murder or violence, but for tax offences.

A strategy like this won't dislodge an ideology directly, but in time if we can clear out the current lot of thieves it may make room for a new generation to emerge and hopefully, just hopefully, a new generation rid of the green poison that our current masters are imbibing.