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

by DoDo on Fri Mar 2nd, 2012 at 01:38:53 PM EST
EU states sign fiscal treaty without UK and Czechs - EUROPE - FRANCE 24
The leaders of 25 EU countries have signed a new treaty they hope will prevent the 17 eurozone nations balance their books and alleviate the currency bloc's crippling debt crisis. The treaty was not signed by the UK or the Czech Republic.

...The Netherlands announced that its "provisional" public 2012 deficit would rise to 4.5 percent of gross domestic product from 4.1 percent forecast before, sparking a pointed rebuke from the European Commission.

"We think that the Netherlands is one country that has been very vocal when supporting the reinforcement of our fiscal surveillance rules," said European Commission economy spokesman Amadeu Altafaj.

And Spain, at the centre of the debt crisis with soaring borrowing costs that have since receded, had to explain why the country's 2011 public deficit estimate grew to 8.5 percent of GDP from a previous forecast of 6.0 percent.



*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Fri Mar 2nd, 2012 at 01:39:07 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Backdoor deals give Serbia EU candidate status | EurActiv
Serbia clinched its coveted status of EU candidate country at a summit in Brussels last night (1 March), after Bucharest dropped its opposition following an agreement on a roadmap that should see Romania enter the Schengen passport-free area in September.

...During a dramatic meeting at the ministerial level on 28 February, Romania took its EU partners by surprise when it announced it had concerns over the rights of ethnic Romanians living in Serbia...

The move raised eyebrows among EU ministers, while in Serbia anti-Romanian sentiments started spreading like a forest fire.

This led to frantic behind-the-scenes talks ahead of the EU summit. In what appeared like a face-saving effort, Bucharest and Belgrade signed a bilateral agreement at the ambassadorial level yesterday morning, providing for the better protection for the Romanian minority in Serbia.



*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Fri Mar 2nd, 2012 at 01:39:18 PM EST
[ Parent ]
A different take:

EUobserver.com / Enlargement / Serbia gets EU candidate status, Romania gets nothing

EU Council chairman Herman Van Rompuy, after chairing a special Dutch-Romanian meeting on Thursday, said there is "strong political will" to make a "positive decision" on Schengen in September.

But in the end Romanian President Traian Basescu backed down without any real concessions.

Dutch leader Mark Rutte said he will only lift the veto if the European Commission in July says Bulgaria and Romania have done enough to fight corruption. "We need two [commission] reports that point in the right direction," he noted.



*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Fri Mar 2nd, 2012 at 01:39:26 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Ahhh...Ohhh...I have never heard about Romanians in Serbia being mistreated or discriminated or even hated in any way (excluding some isolated more personal cases). My maternal grandmother was Romanian from Vojvodina and I used to visit Romanian relatives in those areas of Vojvodina that have a lot of Romanians. So this is really news for me and frankly I do not believe it. Someone (probably Germans) pushed and pressed Romanian politicians to raise this "issue" because they want to force Serbia to recognize Kosovo and are not successful by now. So let's press Serbia more by opening new conflicts between minorities and Serbs... Don't they have enough trouble with Hungary's new aspirations about other state's territory and human rights issue? Don't they have enough trouble in Europe anyway? Unbelievable...And poor Romania has to do everything they ask to get Schengen that it should get anyway...

Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind...Albert Einstein
by vbo on Sat Mar 3rd, 2012 at 03:30:24 AM EST
[ Parent ]
So this is really news for me and frankly I do not believe it.

Why? Whipping up ethnic hatred is easy and quick, it doesn't need much precedent, and specifically in Vojvodina, there have been conflicts pushed by nationalists recently.

Someone (probably Germans) pushed and pressed Romanian politicians to raise this "issue"

Nope, the motivation mentioned in the article, Romania's blocked entry into the Schengen zone, is very much a sore issue for Romania to do stuff on their own.

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

by DoDo on Sat Mar 3rd, 2012 at 06:27:50 AM EST
[ Parent ]
and specifically in Vojvodina, there have been conflicts pushed by nationalists recently.

Honestly, there were tensions in Vojvodina (probably "always" but mostly during Milosevic) between Hungarians and Serbs, because of the history and because Hungarians were loud about how they would like separation. But I really can't remember any serious conflict with Romanians. I am not there and I can't guaranty that now may be some tensions but I haven't heard or read about them anywhere...so I am skeptical about this sudden "news".
On the other hand Romanian situation in Serbia has NOTHING to do with Romania not having Schengen...I do not see connection at all so it's pretty much looks to me like "you stir things in Serbia so we can show them for not being obedient about Kosovo and we'll give you Schengen"...or actually not...but well we can promise to do it anyway...


Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind...Albert Einstein
by vbo on Sat Mar 3rd, 2012 at 08:55:28 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Its the way politics happen in EU all the time. A government treathens veto in one question to gain an advantage in a unrelated question. Crappy system, but there it is.

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 Sat Mar 3rd, 2012 at 09:10:00 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I repeat, whipping up ethnic hatred is easy and quick, it doesn't need much precedent. By assuming that it needs long-running precedent, you are also implicitly excusing those who whip up hatred.

On the other hand Romanian situation in Serbia has NOTHING to do with Romania not having Schengen...

Why would it have to? This is politics, where horse-trading and blackmail are the norm. You use the influences you have to get what you want. (And Romanian President Băsescu is a populist who found nothing beneath him in his domestic power struggles, so it entirely fits his style.)

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

by DoDo on Sat Mar 3rd, 2012 at 09:32:22 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Why would it have to? This is politics, where horse-trading and blackmail are the norm.
---------------
Yes but I am just saying that I am sceptical about this "issue" with Romanians as nowadays I am sceptical about ANYTHING they present us as truth. It is so obvious after all we have witnessed in last few decades that they will stir and lie and go to war and do practically ANYTHING just to preserve their interest. Probably this was a case always but is now more obvious because we have this information revolution and people can find out more...if they want and if they are capable.

Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind...Albert Einstein
by vbo on Sat Mar 3rd, 2012 at 06:00:40 PM EST
[ Parent ]
EUobserver.com / Political Affairs / Sarkozy: I'm not cut out to lead an EU institution

BRUSSELS - Forced to reflect that this week's EU summit might be his last as he trails in polls ahead of April elections, French President Nicolas Sarkozy has said he does not have the temperament to lead an EU institution.

"I don't think I have the qualities to be a good European Commission or European Council President," he said in Brussels on Friday (2 March) in response to a press question on his potential future career.

With the first round of elections taking place on 22 April, Sarkozy is polling 3.5 points behind Socialist contender Francois Hollande.

A second round vote, on 6 May, sees Hollande on about 56.6 percent, according to an Ifop poll published Thursday, compared with 43.5 percent for Sarkozy.



*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Fri Mar 2nd, 2012 at 01:39:38 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Putin holds comfortable lead ahead of Sunday's vote - RUSSIA - FRANCE 24
Russian President Vladimir Putin seems all but certain to win re-election in Sunday's vote, with current opinion polls putting him at 60%. The runner up, Communist party leader Gennady Zyuganov, trails with only around 15%.


*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Fri Mar 2nd, 2012 at 01:39:48 PM EST
[ Parent ]
ElPaiscom in English: Barcelona hospital closes its surgery ward because of regional health cuts
Bellvitge Hospital, which has been one of Spain's most important health facilities for complex surgeries, canceled all of the day's procedures. Among the patients affected by this sudden closure was Silvia López, a 33-year-old woman who was meant to have seven cancerous tumors removed from her rectal area. The cancer has spread to her liver.

"All of these months of chemotherapy and weeks of diet so they can leave us out in the cold at the last minute," she said.

Additionally, a hospital official said there wasn't any money to treat the hundreds of patients -- many of them elderly -- who have come down with seasonal flu. "We have been hit right in the middle of the flu epidemic and there are not enough beds for patients," the spokesman said. The Catalan government of Artur Mas has made some $1.2 billion euros in cuts, or 12 percent of the region's health budget.



There are three stories about the euro crisis: the Republican story, the German story, and the truth. -- Paul Krugman
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Sat Mar 3rd, 2012 at 04:04:37 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Wait until the stories about ambulances running around with a patient but being rejected by multiple hospitals come, then you'll get a real austerity feel...

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Sat Mar 3rd, 2012 at 06:29:57 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Guardian - Front Page - Revealed: government plans for police privatisation

Private companies could take responsibility for investigating crimes, patrolling neighbourhoods and even detaining suspects under a radical privatisation plan being put forward by two of the largest police forces in the country.

West Midlands and Surrey have invited bids from G4S and other major security companies on behalf of all forces across England and Wales to take over the delivery of a wide range of services previously carried out by the police.

The contract is the largest on police privatisation so far, with a potential value of £1.5bn over seven years, rising to a possible £3.5bn depending on how many other forces get involved.

This scale dwarfs the recent £200m contract between Lincolnshire police and G4S, under which half the force's civilian staff are to join the private security company, which will also build and run a police station for the first time.



keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Sat Mar 3rd, 2012 at 06:22:12 AM EST
[ Parent ]
seeing as the Met are already a wholly outsourced arm of News International, while the undercover police are more concerned with protecting polluting corporates than preventing terrorism, this is merely public admission of a long standing policy.

Of course, I'm sure there will never be any conflicts of interest between investigating corporate crime and the corporate ownership of the investigation. As we've already see n in the case of Murdoch, merely providing expensive meals and a crate of best scotch would never influence the course of an investigation ..(cont p94)

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Sat Mar 3rd, 2012 at 06:24:25 AM EST
[ Parent ]

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