Welcome to the new version of European Tribune. It's just a new layout, so everything should work as before - please report bugs here.
Display:
You must be raring to go!
by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 11:51:51 AM EST
No, but pink in the middle.

"Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage." - Ana´s Nin
by Crazy Horse on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 12:10:47 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Would someone of the french persuasion please comment on what this means and where it comes from?

French government report issues renewables warning


The Energy 2050 report notes found increased deployment of wind and solar will require electricity storage on a "massive" scale alongside demand management.
....
While the country should continue to develop renewable energies, the commission recommends that "the optimal path" for France is to extend the life of its nuclear plants, as long as the Nuclear Safety Authority permits, and continue working on the next generation reactors.


"Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage." - Ana´s Nin
by Crazy Horse on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 12:09:21 PM EST
It comes from Areva and EDF, of course.

tens of millions of people stand to see their lives ruined because the bureaucrats at the ECB don't understand introductory economics -- Dean Baker
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 12:16:05 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The Commission (of yes-men) was set up last September by the delightful Energy Minister, Eric Besson, with the mission of looking at the cheapest option for electricity in the future. Most NGOs refused to participate. Even when setting up the commission, Besson declared that the government would, over the coming months, continue to support the nuclear option "avec une clairvoyance renforcée, with enhanced insight", whatever that means.

The report, delivered the other week, unsurprisingly says nukes are the ticket. And trashes renewables - can't possibly produce enough, intermittence (even with a Europe-wide grid) = fail, will increase electricity prices by 50% to 100%, etc.

So, to remain as cheap as possible, prolong the life of existing reactors.

Mostly smoke-blowing ordered up to embarrass the opposition during the electoral period. A waste of time, because the PS bought the Greens out with the promise of parliamentary seats, and Hollande can be basically pro-nuke without any fuss being made.

by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 12:43:53 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Guardian: Attacks paid for by big business are 'driving science into a dark era' (19 February 2012)
Most scientists, on achieving high office, keep their public remarks to the bland and reassuring. Last week Nina Fedoroff, the president of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), broke ranks in a spectacular manner.

...

"We are sliding back into a dark era," she said. "And there seems little we can do about it. I am profoundly depressed at just how difficult it has become merely to get a realistic conversation started on issues such as climate change or genetically modified organisms."

...

"Those of us who grew up in the sixties, when we put men on the Moon, now have to watch as every Republican candidate for this year's presidential election denies the science behind climate change and evolution. That is a staggering state of affairs and it is very worrying," said Professor Naomi Oreskes, of the University of California, San Diego.



tens of millions of people stand to see their lives ruined because the bureaucrats at the ECB don't understand introductory economics -- Dean Baker
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 01:16:59 PM EST
One particularly important thing scientists could do would be to work harder to help colleagues not fall into accepting money from large corporations for research that omits as much as it includes...
by Metatone (metatone [a|t] gmail (dot) com) on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 01:33:15 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Eek! Politically-motivated scientists!
by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 02:01:01 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Whatever next? Activist judges? Politically motivated politicians?

The world is ending.

by ThatBritGuy (thatbritguy (at) googlemail.com) on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 03:21:30 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Seems to me that the 1960s were the anomaly. Massive cold-war funding for research, all sorts. "Scientists" looked upon as gods after triumphs of antibiotics, nuclear bombs, jet airplanes, TV, detergent, microwave ovens, etc. Whether any 1960s-era scientists had anything to do with the improvement in the popular consumer lifestyle is debatable, since the underlying science for most of these things was done in the 1930s, much of it in Europe.

Maybe the way to get science going again is to starve it so that only the truly committed will be involved. That would certainly reduce the number of useless published articles...

by asdf on Thu Feb 23rd, 2012 at 08:32:51 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Maybe the way to get science going again is to starve it so that only the truly committed will be involved. That would certainly reduce the number of useless published articles...

Hmm, what I'm seeing right now is starvation leading to an increase in the number of useless articles as the truly committed are swamped by mediocres who can't make better money in the private sector and are quite happy to write, referee, publish and not read useless crap.

I'm also seeing a "Dutch disease" as finance becomes the only sector that pays a decent salary to science types so it hoovers up those who are neither truly committed nor mediocre.

tens of millions of people stand to see their lives ruined because the bureaucrats at the ECB don't understand introductory economics -- Dean Baker

by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Fri Feb 24th, 2012 at 01:47:20 AM EST
[ Parent ]


You can't be me, I'm taken
by Sven Triloqvist on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 01:39:07 PM EST
Me no savvy. What are we to take from this?

She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre
by ATinNM on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 02:22:16 PM EST
[ Parent ]
An interesting - for some - example of post-production motion analysis in the creation of the unique but ultimately irrelevant POV of the drawing tool.

You can't be me, I'm taken
by Sven Triloqvist on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 02:56:44 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Fair enough.

I thought there might be some earth-shattering revelation causing an evolutionary jump in human consciousness leading to the beating of swords into plowshares, global equality, fraternity, & all that shit and I was too dense to "Get."

She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre

by ATinNM on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 03:07:34 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Thanks for treading where I was too intellectually embarrassed to go.

'tis strange I should be old and neither wise nor valiant. From "The Maid's Tragedy" by Beaumont & Fletcher
by Wife of Bath (kareninaustin at g mail dot com) on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 04:20:09 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I "do" The Fool extremely well.  

Naturally talented in that direction, I suppose.

:-)


She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre

by ATinNM on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 05:24:57 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Now don't go thinking you have any monopoly there!

As the Dutch said while fighting the Spanish: "It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 07:10:51 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Today I went in search of a new phenomenon in the UK, the micropub. Opening up a pub used to be expensive and difficult, but following a change in the law in 2005 it's now a lot easier.

the first guy to do so was at the Butchers Arms in Kent and he inspired a few others nearby to follow him. There are a few others here and there, but if someone wants to talk to the wellspring, you have to go to Kent. Fortunately for me it's only just the other side of the the Thames.

It is a tiny place, but it's absolutely wlecoming and it's comfy, tho' what it's like when there's 20 or so in I don't know.

I spoke with the the guy for about an hour and got a feel for the finances and think I might look at trying something similar here.

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 02:26:43 PM EST
So, how big is a pint in a micropub?

;-))

"Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage." - Ana´s Nin

by Crazy Horse on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 02:29:25 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Ha, same size, it's only legal to serve beer in 1/3, 1/2, 2/3 or 1 pint. And it has to be at least the amount specified, none of this several centimetres of foam to fill the glass up as you get in germany.

But it's beer. Just cask beer. No bottled beer, no wine, no cider (I might change that), no food, no music, no television, no mobile phones. But conversation definitely allowed.

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 02:47:30 PM EST
[ Parent ]
No music?

Not even the faint sound of Mozart, Bach, Telemann, etc., drifting quietly in the background?

(Agree with the TV.  They are a pestiferous plague of intrusive noise here in the states.)

She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre

by ATinNM on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 02:58:32 PM EST
[ Parent ]
A license for music costs money (and it's not cheap). Otherwise a bit of chamber music in the background would be ideal

keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 03:34:08 PM EST
[ Parent ]
See if rg can provide live music...

tens of millions of people stand to see their lives ruined because the bureaucrats at the ECB don't understand introductory economics -- Dean Baker
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 03:50:45 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Even worse. The regulations on live music are an absolute nightmare

keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 05:54:46 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Is it a mandatory license from a government agency you mean or a license from a collecting agency to play their music? Because if the problem is the latter, is there no music released under a license that would allow it to be played in a micropub?

A vote for PES is a vote for EPP! A vote for EPP is a vote for PES! Support the coalition, vote EPP-PES!
by A swedish kind of death on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 04:07:36 PM EST
[ Parent ]
all music owes royalties to the "Performing rights society". There's no such thing as royalty free as the PRS take a slice of everything.

Technically you can be busted for playing a radio in a public park

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 05:58:04 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Like in Spain...

tens of millions of people stand to see their lives ruined because the bureaucrats at the ECB don't understand introductory economics -- Dean Baker
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 06:01:32 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I have no doubt they claim a slice of everything, but at least in Sweden in theory they only have the right to collect for their members.

Wikipedia to the rescue:

PRS for Music - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

PRS for Music manages about 10 million musical works on behalf of its songwriter, composer and publisher members. PRS for Music licenses its members' musical works whenever they are played, performed or reproduced both in the UK and globally through its partner network.[2] A PRS for Music licence gives the user permission to play or use the music it represents in a number of circumstances such as on radio, TV, online or in public premises.

PRS for Music - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

There are often internet radio stations that play music which has been licensed by the copyright holders such that it can be played without paying the PRS. This may include some Creative Commons or Public Domain music. According to these radio stations, there is no need to pay money to the PRS if only these radio stations are played at your workplace. [27][dubious - discuss] There are many radio stations that play creative commons music. [28] There are also various 'licence-free' music streaming services providing background music for businesses that only use music exempt from PRS (and PPL) Public Performance Licences.[29]

Though your micropub might not enjoy trying to set a legal precedent if none exists.

A vote for PES is a vote for EPP! A vote for EPP is a vote for PES! Support the coalition, vote EPP-PES!

by A swedish kind of death on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 06:10:06 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Indeed. PRS will only bust you for playing the radio or 'popular' CDs. If you use open music, and can prove you use open music, no bust.

Of course this means no pop or anything punters might recognise. But that might not be a bad thing.

Not everyone likes music in pubs anyway.

by ThatBritGuy (thatbritguy (at) googlemail.com) on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 06:37:08 PM EST
[ Parent ]
ThatBritGuy:
But that might not be a bad thing.

ruddy saving grace, harumph splutter

"I would rather have questions that can't be answered than answers that can't be questioned." - Richard Feynman

by melo (melometa4(at)gmail.com) on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 09:44:28 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Well that sucks.

She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre
by ATinNM on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 05:26:39 PM EST
[ Parent ]
You may be able to find some public domain music. Recording has been around a long while. I don't know if a complete effort has been made to hover up all claims on recordings from the 20s, etc. That could also be a name for the pub: The Public Domain. But that might be tempting or taunting TPTB.

As the Dutch said while fighting the Spanish: "It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 07:15:43 PM EST
[ Parent ]
No music? What if the customers start singing? Or do they have signs like this?

by gk (gk) on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 03:02:20 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Ah, kloster andechs. Great pub. must visit soon (I shall warn WoB when it happens)

No signs like that, but...

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 03:35:13 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Wait, wait, where's that sign from?  I'm sure I've seen it somewhere.  Information, please.

'tis strange I should be old and neither wise nor valiant. From "The Maid's Tragedy" by Beaumont & Fletcher
by Wife of Bath (kareninaustin at g mail dot com) on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 04:22:26 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The Biergarten at Andechs. At least, I saw such a sign when I was there, and this sign is from Kloster Andechs, so I presume they are the same.
by gk (gk) on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 04:24:00 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Yes, like Helen said (doh... must learn to read).  Thanks, gk.  

I would love to go there, but I'll wait for Helen.

'tis strange I should be old and neither wise nor valiant. From "The Maid's Tragedy" by Beaumont & Fletcher

by Wife of Bath (kareninaustin at g mail dot com) on Thu Feb 23rd, 2012 at 03:14:38 AM EST
[ Parent ]
you go girl!
by stevesim on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 02:33:24 PM EST
[ Parent ]
thanks

keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 02:47:54 PM EST
[ Parent ]
You can get anything you want at Helen's micropub!

tens of millions of people stand to see their lives ruined because the bureaucrats at the ECB don't understand introductory economics -- Dean Baker
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 03:24:15 PM EST
[ Parent ]
well, that's a good point.

How many different beers can you do, do justice to, and economically speaking?

No more than four, at a wild guess?

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 03:32:43 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Well, you start gently. the first place seems to keep 6 on, but two of those are strong ones which last a fair while.

the second one I visited had 3 on, but would probably have 5 on at weekends.

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 03:37:43 PM EST
[ Parent ]
No food?  Not even pretzels and nuts?  Will they let you give away food but not sell it? Does it require an extra license?  So many question, and all I really want to know is "can I bring a cake and some munchies to the grand opening?"

'tis strange I should be old and neither wise nor valiant. From "The Maid's Tragedy" by Beaumont & Fletcher
by Wife of Bath (kareninaustin at g mail dot com) on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 04:25:32 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Food opens you up to all sorts of inspections by the council and often isn't worth the bother.

Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 04:40:35 PM EST
[ Parent ]
So long as it's served cold in an unopened wrapper, it's ok. so nuts, crisps, supermarket pork pie in plastic good. Gourmet pork pie from local butcher open, not good

keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 05:53:59 PM EST
[ Parent ]
nicest atmosphere i ever found in a 'third space' was the troubadour in earls' court. it was a hole in the wall back in the sixties. lately i looked online and apparently it has expanded a lot, (garden space, 1-bedroom funky hotel upstairs.)

apparently it has kept its charm, though that's what they'd want me to think, obviously...

just to make a point about a little place, if authentic enough, becoming a really nice community focus point as people gradually gravitate there in a low key way, being able to rely on its sustained quality. it bit off what it could chew. i wish your enterprise similar success, even if the visions may be different, the intention seems good, and i bet it will attract some good political discussions over the brewskis. nothing nicer than to see a long held dream moving towards realising itself.

"I would rather have questions that can't be answered than answers that can't be questioned." - Richard Feynman

by melo (melometa4(at)gmail.com) on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 09:55:57 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I say go for it.

That's what a good pub should be.  Pubs should be quiet so you talk shit with your neighbors and enjoy a good beer.

Maybe not quite as bare-bones as the guy in Kent has it (I do occasionally enjoy playing pool and hearing some classic rock with my beer), but he's got it a lot more right than wrong.

Be nice to America. Or we'll bring democracy to your country.

by Drew J Jones (pedobear@pennstatefootball.com) on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 04:40:06 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I say "go for it" also, although the licensing rules seem ridiculous. Over in this benighted country, you trip over an establishment selling beer/wine/sandwiches/spaghetti/god-forsaken-frozen-seafood/whatever, not to mention newspapers, with music and dancing girls, practically, everywhere you go.

I was in a chain hamburger outfit last night and they had Laughing Lab beer on tap, which is I suppose not up to real beer-drinker standards but is pretty popular here and was in addition to a list of bottled and draft choices, including Guinness and several others. Just a regular generic low-class 100%-kitsch family place...filled with Army dudes from Fort Carson and their (mostly pretty noisy) young families.

by asdf on Thu Feb 23rd, 2012 at 08:44:59 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I got involved in a major railway-related court case by contributing expert opinions. The glimpse I got of how lawyers work on the case is beyond my most negative stereotypes. The lawyers on the contacted side don't want dumbed-down explanations, nor face-to-face consultations, instead they want to work with technical texts, but don't understand a word of it. Say, they waste pages upon pages on what could be the difference in meaning between two synonyms of the same technical term, not even noticing that the passage using one of the synonyms is completely irrelevant to the case. But, from what I got to see in a document, the opposed side is worse: they don't understand the technical parts either, but that didn't hinder them from making a long list of claims of which every single one was either a misunderstanding of something basic, complete nonsense, a quote blatantly out of context, or outright lie. Finally, according to someone closer to the fire, the jury has even less clue, and is likely to decide for the side who presents documents with a nicer formatting.

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 03:44:29 PM EST
However, they believe they understand it all perfectly?
by Colman (colman at eurotrib.com) on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 03:52:17 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I can't decide: the ones on "my" side, on one hand, even have the gall to assert at one point that they "completely analysed" a certain railway standard (though I got the impression that they only did a text search); on the other hand, they were clearly swayed and confused by the opposed side's bullshit arguments (hence the questions that reached me).

By the way, one of the opposed side's points is to dismiss an expert opinion by a professor, for using a program of his own rather than a certain high-level environment for simulation programs. Yes, in effect, confusing programming language and application...

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.

by DoDo on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 04:06:16 PM EST
[ Parent ]
So many professionals, so little competence. I'd apologize on behalf of lawyers everywhere, but since most of them aren't the least bit sorry, it would be a waste of words, yes?

I always had the same feeling when I'd watch a story (several on the news show "60 minutes" for instance) that dealt with a matter with regard to which I had personal knowledge and experience. I couldn't help but be disillusioned when the available information was used for the sole purpose, apparently, of supporting a viewpoint rather than providing the truth.

With legal cases (lawsuits) unfortunately, the real purpose is to present that which wins for one's clients, not that which reveals the truth or creates any real understanding.  Then there's the fact that some people just don't mind doing a shoddy job when they know they're going to make the big bucks anyway.

Well, that's enough out of me for one night.

'tis strange I should be old and neither wise nor valiant. From "The Maid's Tragedy" by Beaumont & Fletcher

by Wife of Bath (kareninaustin at g mail dot com) on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 04:40:08 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I couldn't help but be disillusioned when the available information was used for the sole purpose, apparently, of supporting a viewpoint rather than providing the truth.

NY Times: Reason Seen More as Weapon Than Path to Truth

"Reasoning doesn't have this function of helping us to get better beliefs and make better decisions," said Hugo Mercier, who is a co-author of the journal article, with Dan Sperber. "It was a purely social phenomenon. It evolved to help us convince others and to be careful when others try to convince us." Truth and accuracy were beside the point.


tens of millions of people stand to see their lives ruined because the bureaucrats at the ECB don't understand introductory economics -- Dean Baker
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 05:01:10 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Just as you were getting started!

You can't be me, I'm taken
by Sven Triloqvist on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 05:21:33 PM EST
[ Parent ]
interesting experience for you, I am sure.

I had a similar experience when I helped an attorney friend of mine fight a noise complaint for one of his clients.  As I had done acoustic measurements as an engineer, I tried to explain to him various scientific concepts but he only wanted scientific texts which he could present, also in the nicer format.

He won the case as I pointed out that all the measurements from the complainant were taken without adequate protection from the wind.

by stevesim on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 03:59:50 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Ha  A former employers lawyers wanted to sue an ex client who had been ejected from the premesis for plagiarism. Said client did not have a leg to stand on,  had set up websites attacking the employer, had Libeled organisation and individuals inside it plus picked out organisation board members and tried to sue them for not properly  investigating the claimed conspiracy against him.

I was asked to look through all of the evidence that had resulted in his ejection and see if it all stood up for the organisations lawyers. after several hours of investigation, I had a report that said the initial ejection was rock solid, Chummy was absolutely bang to rights on the initial charges.

Lawyer initially asked if I could rewrite the report in a more "Friendly" font, and then asked that seeing as the case would cost starting at £20,000 if It was thrown out, and £200,000 if it went to court and went badly, and there would be legal costs on top of that, would there be anything I could do to the complainants website to make it stop working permanently. Had to question him about if he knew how much trouble he could be in If I tried this.

Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.

by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 04:32:03 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Law is what you can get away with.

It's about persuasion, not technical accuracy or truth. Nonsense, lies, misdirections and drama are all part of the process.

Then again - conspiracy to commit an obvious crime is evidence of epic fail, even by the usual standards of the legal profession.

by ThatBritGuy (thatbritguy (at) googlemail.com) on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 06:40:13 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Grecia y sus ciudadanos son meros daños colaterales - Desde Londres - Cotizalia.comGreece and its citizens are mere collateral damage - From London (blog) - Cotizalia.com
Cuando la elite creó la UME sabía que no era una Área Optima. "El estado actual no es adecuado para empezar una unión monetaria. Un retraso debe ser considerado" decían en 1988 Neumann, Ernst Helmstädter, Wilhelm Nölling y Wilhelm Hankel.When the elite created the European Monetary Union they knew it wasn't an Optimal Area. "The current state is not adequate to start a currency union. A delay should be considered" said in 1988 Neumann, Ernst Helstaedter, Wilhelm Noelling and Wilhelm Hankel.
Faltaba un elemento básico que permite que las uniones funcionen, un mecanismo de transferencia entre países con superávits y países con déficits. No fue un despiste no crear ese mecanismo. La UE es absurdamente meticulosa con sus asuntos. No olvidó una de las condiciones para que una unión no arruine a sus países.There was a basic element that allow unions to work, a transfer mechanism between surplus and deficit countries. It wasn't an oversight not to create such a mechanism. The EU is absurdly meticulous about its affairs. It didn't [just] forget one of the conditions for a union not to ruin its countries.
Sin ese mecanismo, con la negativa franco-alemana a corregir los excesos, la corrupta casta política y la pasividad ciudadana, Grecia y Portugal estaban condenados desde 1999. Pero la elite no podía implementar en 1999 la Europa que quería, una UE que pasara el poder de los Estados nacionales a un gobierno central y el fin de un sistema de prestaciones sociales costoso para las corporaciones.Without that mechanism, with the Franco-German refusal to correct excesses, with the corrupt political caste and the citizens' passivity, Greece and Portugal were doomed since 1999. But the elite could not implement in 1999 the Europe they wanted, a Europe which would transfer power from national States to a central government and the end of a system of social entitlements costly for corporations.
......
Ceder soberanía monetaria al BCE y legislativa a Bruselas era bastante como para eliminar poder estatal y el sistema de Bienestar. La connivencia político-financiera, la falta de vigilancia de los reguladores y la pasividad ciudadana llevaron a la burbuja del crédito a partir del 2001.To transfer monetary sovereignty to the ECB and the legislative one to Brussels was enough to eliminate state power and the Welfare system. The political/financial collusion, the lack of vigilance by the regulators and the citizens' pasivity led to the credit bubble from 2001.
Para el 2007, los desequilibrios entre países con superávits y déficits por cuenta corriente eran insostenibles. La crisis financiera en los EEUU fue el detonante de una crisis que antes o después habría estallado en la UE.By 2007, current account imbalances between surplus and deficit countries were unsustainable. The US financial crisis was the trigger of a crisis which sooner or later would have broken out in the EU.
......
Como consecuencia de estos rescates y la penosa actuación gubernamental, la crisis financiera se convirtió en crisis soberana y los déficits públicos explotaron. Los Estados no tienen por qué endeudarse emitiendo deuda. La UE podría tener déficit público sin emitir deuda. España no tendría que preocuparse por colocar su deuda y menos al 10%.As a result of these [banking] rescues and the pitiful government action, the financial crisis became a sovereign crisis and public deficits exploded. States don't have to get indebted by issuing debt. The EU could have a public deficit without issuing debt. Spain needn't have to worry about plaving its debt, least of all at 10%.
Pero por la "errónea" concepción de la UME, los Estados deben endeudarse a través del Mercado siguiendo una Ley que no permite que los Estados se financien a través del BCE. El aumento del déficit desde el 2007 no fue tanto por el descontrol público como por el apoyo al sector financiero (Alemania), pago de intereses de la deuda (Italia) o pérdida de ingresos por el desempleo (Francia).But because of the "wrong" conception of the EMU, States must get indebted through the Market following a law which does not allow States to finance themselves through the ECB. The rise of public deficit from 2007 was not so much due to out of control public spending but due to the support to the financial sector (Germany), payment of interest on debt (Italy) or loss of revenue due to unemployment (France).
Como la Comisión reconoce, "las balanzas fiscales se deterioraron con los estabilizadores automáticos responsables de la mitad del deterioro". A pesar de ello, la reacción de la UE ante el aumento de los déficits fue culpar a los Países, "cargarse" sus gobernantes e imponer un ajuste que no soluciona los problemas.As the Commission recognizes, "fiscal balances deteriorated with automatic stabilizers being responsible for half of the deterioration". Despite this, the reaction of the EU facing rising deficits was to blame the Countries, "get rid of" their rulers and impose an adjustment which doesn't solve the problems.
Estos hechos explican la situación de Grecia hoy. La UE podría haber evitado su endeudamiento en 1999 con una correcta UME, en el 2003 cuando el BCE pidió corregir su déficit o haber forzado su quiebra en el 2010 cuando era claro que no tenía solución.These facts explain the situation of Greece today. The EU could have prevented its indebtedness in 1999 with a correct EMU, in 2003 when the EBC asked to correct its deficit, or a bankruptcy could have been forced in 2010 when it was clear there was no solution.
......
Puede que se apruebe este rescate pero la UE no tiene intención de aplicarlo. ¿Cómo justificar que Grecia tuviera una quita del 70% sin cumplir las medidas de ajuste cuando España hace recortes y una reforma laboral?The rescue may be approved, but the EU has no intention to apply it. How could it be justified that Greece would have a debt reduction of 70% without fulfilling the adjustment measures when Spain is doing cuts and a labour reform?
Para ello, la propaganda de la UE vendió la idea que los hedge funds buscaban la quiebra y la aparición de los CDS, a pesar que las entidades francesas y alemanas ya los tenían diariamente descontados a precios de mercado.Fr this purpose, the EU propaganda sold the idea that hedge funds were looking for a default and the triggering of CDS, despite the fact that French and German [financial] entities already had them daily discounted to market prices.
La idea era dar tiempo a las entidades para que se prepararan para la quiebra griega con la ayuda del LTRO II y el incremento de las líneas con la Fed. Ahora, pueden asumir esos €81.000 millones. Grecia ya puede quebrar.The idea was to give time to [financial] entities to prepare for a greek default with the help of the second LTRO and the increase of [liquidity] lines with the Fed. Now, they can take on those €81bn. Greece can finally go bankrupt.
Pero no quieren que parezca que es una decisión de La UE, así que se invita a Grecia a que se vaya. Han colocado al país en una situación que el próximo gobierno pedirá la salida. Grecia ya cumplió su papel. Gracias y adiós.But they don't want it to look like an EU decision, so they invite Greece to leave. They have put the country in the situation that the next government will ask for an exit. Greece already played its role. Thanks and good-bye.
......
España deberá continuar con sus ajustes a pesar de lo que significa para los ciudadanos. Y sin mostrar ninguna duda en la aplicación de las medidas o el mercado atacará. El paso final es Francia. Cuanto más débil, mejor para Alemania. Cuanto más apoya la Merkel a Sarkozy, más cerca está Hollande de la victoria.Spain must continue with the adjustments despite what that means for citizens. And without showing any hesitation in the application of the measures or the market will attack. The final step is France. The weaker, the better for Germany. The more Merkel supports Sarkozy, the closer Hollande is to victory.
Grecia solo es un peón en este ajedrez. Un experimento que prueba que la crisis no es tanto económica sino una herramienta de transformación de la sociedad.Greece is but a pawn in this chess game. An experiment that demonstrates that the crisis is not so much economic as a tool for transforming society.
Cuando el gobierno alemán pide un protectorado sobre Grecia, sigue las ideas de Verwaayen: en este mundo global, la nación está desapareciendo y se debe reemplazar por la relación entre corporaciones y regiones. Las corporaciones europeas no pueden competir con Asia. Sobran pensiones y prestaciones. Es la "asiación" de la UE.When the German government demands a protectorate over Greece, it's following the ideas of Verwaayen: in this global world, the nation is disappearing and it must be replaced by relations among corporations and regions. The European corporations cannot compete with Asia. Pensions and entitlements are excessive. It's the "Asiatization" of the EU.
El desempleo pasa a ser un problema individual. Los trabajadores están tan asustados y tan endeudados que la deuda cura el problema laboral. Las reformas se aceptan con tal de mantener el trabajo.Unemployment becomes an individual problem. Workers are so scared and indebted that debt cures the labour problem. Reforms are accepted just to keep one's job.

I can't find anything to disagree with in the analysis. Only the claims of motivation, planning and agency are unverifiable and equally amenable to explanation by incompetence or blindness. But the picture is too consistent for comfort.

tens of millions of people stand to see their lives ruined because the bureaucrats at the ECB don't understand introductory economics -- Dean Baker

by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 04:57:36 PM EST
As Michael Hudson wisely noted, when you find methodological madness, private interest is always at work.

As the Dutch said while fighting the Spanish: "It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 07:27:38 PM EST
[ Parent ]
European Tribune - Wednesday Open Thread
There was a basic element that allow unions to work

Should be "What was missing was a basic element..." etc.

by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Thu Feb 23rd, 2012 at 02:44:04 AM EST
[ Parent ]
The "motivation, planning and agency" give me a problem because I have a job believing in such perfect scheming over twenty years. It's easy to second-guess history.

OTOH, the description of the current situation, "It's the "Asia(n)ization" of the EU", "debt cures the labour problem", seems to me perfectly right.

The Machiavellian intention ascribed to Merkel of supporting Sarkozy to help Hollande win so France can then be market-blitzed and reduced to a quivering jelly (that's what I understand, give or take a bit of language) is... Hmmmm.

by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Thu Feb 23rd, 2012 at 02:55:19 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Umm, whilst I appreciate Mig posting all that, it's a bit of a breach of creative commons 3 paragraphs rule ain't it

keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Thu Feb 23rd, 2012 at 03:12:57 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Except the translation is all mine.

tens of millions of people stand to see their lives ruined because the bureaucrats at the ECB don't understand introductory economics -- Dean Baker
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Thu Feb 23rd, 2012 at 04:18:23 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Dean Baker abounds: Greece and Those Wild and Crazy Guys at the EC (February 21, 2012)
Last week I got the answer when I had occasion to meet with a high-level EU official. There is no economic reasoning behind the troika's positions. For practical purposes, Greece and the other debt-burdened countries are dealing with crazy people. The pain being imposed is not a route to economic health; rather it is a gruesome bleeding process that will only leave the patient worse off. The economic doctors at the troika are clueless when it comes to understanding a modern economy.

...

But the core countries have zero intention of allowing their inflation rate to increase from the current 1-3 percent range. As I learned from my conversations with this EU official, low inflation is viewed as the equivalent of a commandment from God. He could not even see the logic of deliberately allowing the inflation rate to rise.

...

The country that some proponents of this route hold up as a model is Latvia. Latvia has seen its economy contract by more than 20 percent, although it is now seeing respectable growth. Still, its unemployment rate is well into the double-digits. Furthermore, Latvia's unemployment rate would undoubtedly be much higher if close to 10 percent of its workforce had not emigrated to other countries in search of work.



tens of millions of people stand to see their lives ruined because the bureaucrats at the ECB don't understand introductory economics -- Dean Baker
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Thu Feb 23rd, 2012 at 04:21:09 AM EST
[ Parent ]
On the other hand: Germany is now opposed to merger of EFSF and ESM (Eurointelligence,  23.02.2012)
Why Germany does not care

In an ECFR paper, Sebastian Dullien and Ulrike Guerot take a closer look at the German position, in which they say that Berlin is determined to force a German solution to the crisis. They argue that Germany's rigidity is not just about simple national interest and the psychological scars of Weimar-era hyperinflation. It is about a broadly-held belief in the foundations for economic success, as shown by German historical success. Austerity is not just about teaching others a lesson: it is about building the foundations for sustainable economic growth. And attacking excessive austerity and demanding a renegotiation of the new fiscal treaty will simply fall on deaf ears. Instead, a more promising strategy might be to demand pan-European growth and investment programmes with more spending and taxation power shifted towards the EU level.



tens of millions of people stand to see their lives ruined because the bureaucrats at the ECB don't understand introductory economics -- Dean Baker
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Thu Feb 23rd, 2012 at 04:28:34 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Maybe Germany needs to wage and win a total war against the European Periphery, so that it can then instutute a Marshall Plan and thus recycling its surpluses into post-war reconstruction.

tens of millions of people stand to see their lives ruined because the bureaucrats at the ECB don't understand introductory economics -- Dean Baker
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Thu Feb 23rd, 2012 at 04:30:14 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Yanis Varoufakis: What is a Surplus Recycling Mechanism? An idea going back to Bretton Woods (9 February 2011)
In summary, from the late 1940s to 1971, the United States actively played the role of SRM, recycling wilfully its own surpluses to Europe and Japan. No market mechanism could do this. It was a mechanism that was run, administered and finetuned constantly by skilled officials. Of course, by the 1960s it run out of steam, as the USA turned into a deficit country. From that moment onwards the Global Plan`s days were numbered. And when it crashed on 15th August 1971. ... Today I am posting here Chapter 3 of my forthcoming Global Minotaur, as a contribution to our discussion of what the SRM is and how it worked, at a global scale, from the late 1940s to 1971.
In a nutshell, the US willfully recycled its exports into Germany and Japan. Is it possible that that is a better explanation of the German Economic Miracle than "austerity"?

tens of millions of people stand to see their lives ruined because the bureaucrats at the ECB don't understand introductory economics -- Dean Baker
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Thu Feb 23rd, 2012 at 04:53:33 AM EST
[ Parent ]
can we get Varoufakis as EU finance minister please?

cohn-bendit can take over barroso's gig, while we're at it!

"I would rather have questions that can't be answered than answers that can't be questioned." - Richard Feynman

by melo (melometa4(at)gmail.com) on Thu Feb 23rd, 2012 at 10:38:24 AM EST
[ Parent ]
European Council on Foreign Relations: The long shadow of ordoliberalism: Germany's approach to the euro crisis
A new ECFR paper by Sebastian Dullien and Ulrike Guerot - `The long shadow of ordoliberalism: Germany's approach to the euro crisis' - argues that:
  • Germany's rigidity is not just about simple national interest and the psychological scars of Weimar-era hyperinflation. It is about a broadly-held belief in the foundations for economic success, as shown by German historical success.
  • Austerity is not just about teaching others a lesson: it is about building the foundations for sustainable economic growth (and Germans believe that this view is substantiated by their country's post-war and post-reunification experience). This is not up for negotiation.
  • Attacking excessive austerity and demanding a renegotiation of the new fiscal treaty will simply fall on deaf ears. Instead, a more promising strategy might be to demand pan-European growth and investment programmes with more spending and taxation power shifted towards the EU level.


tens of millions of people stand to see their lives ruined because the bureaucrats at the ECB don't understand introductory economics -- Dean Baker
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 05:12:33 PM EST
That one analysis states that such attempts "will simply fall on deaf ears" is not reason to not try, if only for the record. Especially if you have a fallback position, which is where you're trying to go anyway.

As Robert Zimmerman once said, "Even Swabian housewives must sometimes have to stand naked."

"Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage." - Ana´s Nin

by Crazy Horse on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 06:24:50 PM EST
[ Parent ]
This presents as received fact assertions that we know to be wrong and misleading. Is this out of deference to German sensibilities or in an attempt to convince all that There Is No Alternative?

As the Dutch said while fighting the Spanish: "It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 07:49:14 PM EST
[ Parent ]
the cognitive dissonance for me comes when i feel myself saying, ok, we'll take the no-nukes, we'll take the civic responsibilities, we'll take the ability to work hard at difficult, rigorously demanding enterprises, we'll take statues of goethe and beethoven in our city squares, we'lleven dress in beige polyester, but set us up with panels, set southern europe free from the utility yoke, and let us pay our own way energetically, and as surplus accrues with greater rollout, we'll give it back to you to pay the interest on those nice deutschmarks, oops euros you set us up for our solar farms with.

but that would be assuming, said the other voice, that they actually want this european experiment to actually work, in hard times as well as good, thin and thick.

if austerity really meant cutting out waste, start with bankster bonuses, fatcat politicians and work down through the ranks from there.

the gap between the obvious and public ignorance of it has never in all of history been so vast, can anyone think of a more dramatic one.

if it takes 5 planets' resources to power up america, we must be good for 2 or 3, and china... but the other side of the change, the new paradigm, is infinite electricity for everyone, limited only by how many units we choose to install. home energy systems should be as common as telephones, dishwashers, prams and pushbikes...if only entrepreneurs could make as much money off doing that as they can blowing property bubbles, price and market fixing, and blowing shit up, we'd be there already!

head meet keyboard

"I would rather have questions that can't be answered than answers that can't be questioned." - Richard Feynman

by melo (melometa4(at)gmail.com) on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 09:00:58 PM EST
[ Parent ]
 Here's something to get you in the mood for the GOP debate tonight!  I got 5/10.  

Mother Jones

by ElaineinNM on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 06:51:51 PM EST
I got 4, who could have imagined Dave Mustaine'd be  even dumber than Santorum

keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Thu Feb 23rd, 2012 at 03:11:31 AM EST
[ Parent ]
How do you do on Haider vs. Blair?
by gk (gk) on Thu Feb 23rd, 2012 at 03:35:54 AM EST
[ Parent ]
9/14

keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Thu Feb 23rd, 2012 at 06:55:16 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Quiz Blair and Haider : Results | Quiz | guardian.co.uk
You scored 6 out of a possible 14
You're clearly very confused about the difference between Left and Right. Are you perhaps Tony Blair?


A vote for PES is a vote for EPP! A vote for EPP is a vote for PES! Support the coalition, vote EPP-PES!
by A swedish kind of death on Thu Feb 23rd, 2012 at 06:56:43 AM EST
[ Parent ]
ha

keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Thu Feb 23rd, 2012 at 08:17:11 AM EST
[ Parent ]
9/14
by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Thu Feb 23rd, 2012 at 08:40:40 AM EST
[ Parent ]
4 too. But knew nothing of Mustaine previously.
by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Thu Feb 23rd, 2012 at 08:34:52 AM EST
[ Parent ]

Display:

Occasional Series