Beyond the Cusp

July 1, 2016

Brexit Opposition Proves There is but One Side

 

Both progressives and conservatives are ridiculing the British for voting to leave the European Union (EU) and reestablish their borders, control of their economy and implementing their own independent immigration law as well as seeking their own trade deals. All of these and more were denied Britain while mired in the EU. There should have been less surprise as the British have for all their history been an independent sort and always a bit apart from the rest of Europe. But there was another item which has become very evident since the Brexit vote, almost everybody was piling on the scorn all claiming that the British had gone absolutely and madly insane voting to leave the bureaucracy that is the EU because the cold and moderating decision making by the overlords in Brussels simply was and always would be superior than anything any elected government can produce because elected governments often change between conservative and progressive thus often working against themselves alternating directions as the governing coalitions change back and forth. This had, for reasons that escape us, brought out condemnations from progressive leftists and right wing conservatives which are an unusual occurrence as these two sides never seem to agree on anything. So, what is at work here to get these presumably opposing sides of the political arena to agree?

 

There has been a theory which is often relegated to the perpetually discontented that there is little difference between the two opposing parties in the United States, the Republicans and the Democrats. The only difference is the speed in which they are driving off the cliff. They claim the left is Thelma and Louise at the end of the movie driving off the cliff with the foot to the floor going as fast as the vehicle will go while the right are driving in a Model A Ford which is only capable of going 35 MPH thus creeps over the cliff, but over the cliff both sides are taking us. We are somewhat less familiar with the particulars of European politics but are willing to bet that Europe too had its perpetual malcontents who feel the same way, just with more parties to blame. Then there is the Israeli politics where if you are happy with the government, just wait a few minutes and it will pass. But the editorial cartoons, editorial articles and even what today passes for news reports all questioned the sanity of the British body politic, or at least those voting on Brexit favorably. No matter what newspaper or news broadcast and the vast majority of talking heads all were scratching their heads and completely gob-smacked over the yay vote on the Brexit referendum. Some even went so far as to question the sanity of David Cameron in keeping his promise to hold a public referendum over remaining in the EU as promised during the campaign. One must respect David Cameron for holding himself to keep what he promised after his party won an outright majority thus not requiring their forming a coalition with another party on who they could claim demanded no referendum as a condition for joining the coalition. Sometimes winning is losing and the Brexit vote was exactly that because the Conservative Party won an outright majority making Cameron Prime Minister and leading to Brexit, forcing Cameron’s resignation.

 

EU Flag

 

All the immediate ramifications aside, the reality is the reactions to Brexit passing has revealed that there are things that the left and the right can come together on, even if they did so independently with their shock, amazement and disapproval of the British decision to leave the EU. Some who came out a little upset had previously denounced the EU bureaucracy as a dictatorial menace threatening all of Europe with its edicts and such and now they were lamenting that Brexit could signal the end of the EU many guessing who would be the next to leave the sinking ship which was obviously the EU. We have our reservations on this automatically leading to the death of the EU as there will always be a remaining core even if France were to depart. Brussels can always count on Germany remaining along with Belgium along with Hungary, Austria, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Poland, Italy, Greece and likely others as other than Britain the other nations mostly retired their currencies in favor of the Euro so leaving the EU would leave them facing a potentially cost prohibitive task of recreating the national currency. The previous paper currency would probably need updating or face an untenable threat of counterfeiting as their older bills probably lack the newer intricacies newer paper money use to prevent easy counterfeiting of their money. Still, if a nation planned their leaving of the EU, plus the fact that exiting the EU can take at least two years, an exit could be managed providing the government was stable enough that they would not need fear too many challenges. But what would possibly be the promise the EU proffered that would be so tempting to both ends of the political spectrum that there would be such agreement?

 

Many people probably have long forgotten one of the selling points originally given for the establishing of the precursor and then finally the making of the EU. The theory was that this was going to be the making of a “United States of Europe” which could rival the United States in economic force and be able to hold their own against the United States and also China on the world market. This was probably wishful thinking but there was a secondary reason spoken of in whispers and hushed tones as if it were some taboo subject, one which must not be permitted the light of day. The EU was to be another unifying economic and governance organization. The United States already represented one of the “great blocs” and the EU would be the next such bloc and it was thought that Russia and China with a few satellites would be a third and this would leave Africa, the Middle East and South America to form one or two other blocs. The oil cartel OPEC came to be seen as one and the South America trading bloc which to a limited extent included India made another loosely grouped bloc. The aim behind the EU was for them to challenge the United States in the coming unifying of these blocs going forward in the next stages where these trading blocs would also begin to take on governing as the EU had with bureaucrats smoothing out any differences allowing for unifications of currencies, trading and governance. Eventually these separate blocs would start to merge into one world-wide trading bloc leading to a unified governing bloc and soon thereafter a world body of bureaucrats who arranged trading formalities and mechanisms which also controlled a unified currency and would supersede the individual government through holding a veto power over legislations and the first task the bureaucrats would face would be unifying the legal systems and laws beginning with trade laws, tariffs and expand from there. The eventual aim was to be that new world order which would be called anything other than new world order, but it would be a world government which would be made up of experts and specialists who would be given the powers and other needful supervisory roles which would grow until the system was inescapable and all national borders would slowly be erased and the world would be unified into one super-governance.

 

There would be a few nations who would require additional pressures in order to force them into the mold of a singular ruling bureaucracy. The United States, Canada and originally, and once again, Britain would be the potential standouts whose strong self-defining histories would make incorporating them into such a system would present special problems. The idea that the Islamic world was not also viewed as a potential set of difficulties is another overlooked problem. Then there was one other nation that from all the lists and presumed alliances and the institutions which were to be formed and slowly merged all left out one nation. They were most definitely refused an alliance in the Middle East, Europe would not offer them a hand, they were nowhere near Asia and the United States had more often than not been in an adversarial role despite accusations of the United States being all but controlled by this nation and Africa and South America likely have no intention of including them. That troublesome country would be Israel. Europe has admitted Israel into projects if Israel adds far more than anyone could argue that they were not an asset to the aims, and thus Israel is accepted in order to advance European interests. With Brexit the world has thankfully taken a giant step back from bureaucratic Gehenna and potential liberty and freedom have taken a step towards safekeeping into the future.

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

July 18, 2013

Britain Should Ignore United States and Quit the European Union

Ever since Britain tied their fates with that of the Continent joining originally the Common Market and later its mutated big brother, the European Union, they have had a rocky relationship with Britain considering breaking off numerous times. Every single time Britain considered going off on their own the United States hit their panic button and rallied to keep Britain economically and financially tied into the Continent. Once again Britain is having second thoughts especially with the European Union once again complaining and blaming many of their ills on the British membership. Many British Parliament Ministers and a plurality if not an outright significant percentage of the population have basically come to their wit’s ends with their animosity further aggravated by consistent attempts by the Brussels bureaucracy to marginalize the City of London through hostile regulations. Add to that the economic perils now threatening the European Union are simply another reason to depart before Britain becomes dragged down because of their ties to the European Union. Add to that the ultimate insult the European union pushed upon the loyal British subjects when they instituted fines for anybody utilizing standards weights and measures requiring all transactions and weights, distances and all other measures in metric weights and measures laying steep fines for anybody caught utilizing the English Standard Measures.

The British have one great advantage over almost every other member of the European Union in going their own way in that they never adopted the Euro and retained their own currency, the Pound Sterling. They would not be required to go through a massive inconvenience of having to print and reissue their native currency and change out the Euros as they never quite got all the way into the morass that is the European Union, especially tying one’s economy and monetary system to the unified monetary Euro system which is what has been at the base of the financial failures of many European Union members. For everybody in the European Union who chose to replace their native currency with the Euro, which is almost all of the older members on the Continent, they no longer had complete control over fluctuating monetary difficulties and the rates of inflation and deflation of their currency was now tied to the European Union’s consolidated financial health. This was doomed from the beginning to run into a very basic and simple problem, if every nations GDP, productivity, production, cost of living and virtually every other macroeconomic indicator did not closely match the general average of the European Union, then their economy would drift away from the worth of their currency as the Euro was valued equal in every nation. A country like Germany where they had an industrial growth curve ahead of the rest of the European Union simply because when the two halves of Germany, the East and West, merged together Germany experienced a great opportunity for economic growth as they modernized and rebuilt much of the communist neglected infrastructure and modernized East German industry. This allowed Germany to have a higher cost of living increase than was reflected in the Euro’s value thus allowing Germans to live with an overly-valued economy to currency ratio, an envious position to be sure. Take any of the nations whose GDP and economy are heavily based on tourism such as Italy or Greece and you find the opposite situation. When the United States led the world into economic near oblivion in 2008, it had a disastrous effect upon the tourist industry which drove the economies of nations such as Greece and Italy to fall way behind the worth of the euro which followed the average of the European Union. This problem would have eventually come to bear and have slowly torn the European Union supposedly common economy and currency apart but the economic ailments from the 2008 real estate crash in the United States which was felt worldwide quickened and accentuated this effect. Without being able to allow their currencies to slide with respect to other currencies of the world because of being tied in using the Euro, those nations who were most affected by the downturn experienced overvalued monetary situation which magnified their potential for inflation which resulted in increased unemployment which in turn pushed inflation higher as they spiraled unable to adjust their currency and balance their troubled economic situation allowing for increased demand for items and manufacturing in their country because of lower cost of business. Keeping their own currency, the Pound Sterling, allowed Britain to adjust the worth and exchange rates against the rest of the world, including those other countries in the European union who were utilizing the Euro, and keep a balance between their economic growth and health and their currency worth against the rest of the world.

The British are going to once again hold a popular referendum on whether to remain or pull out from the European Union. Once before when they tried to hold such a referendum the people voted by a slight but more than negligible margin to withdraw and go off on their own. Of course as soon as the results were announce the United States had a complete hissy fit and demanded they redo the vote. There were debates on both sides of the pond, heated phone calls and meetings, everything short of politicians jumping off the Washington Monument or the Tower Bridge with the British claiming the people had spoken and the United States claiming they did not realize what they had done. In the end they held another vote which was reported to have a different result where the people by the smallest of margins voted to remain in the European Union. Well, wasn’t that convenient for Washington and less so for London as London was struck immediately with a number of days of less than normal British stoicism in the form of agitated demonstrations against the European Union in particular and the continent in general. The polls and predictions for any ballot should one be taken is for overwhelming margin for those who wish the European Union and Britain to go their separate ways. The margin will hopefully be so lopsided that the United States simply resigns and accepts the dictates of the British people. Such might actually have a better than average chance this time since President Obama appears to make most of his decisions by inspecting what all the other United States Presidents have done in the past and then proceeding to do exactly the opposite. So, congratulations Britain, you may actually be allowed to do what is best for Britain and not so much what makes the United States and European Union happiest.

Now for a few notes on the European Union which will likely prove the British wisdom for picking this moment to finally depart the European Union. As Discussed earlier, the Euro as the unifying currency cannot work as long as each nation retains their independent financial policies. The European Union cannot act as if it was the United States of Europe unless it can find some manner of providing a unified overriding economic policy which is uniformly applied to all member states. One of the measures for nations is GDP which can be determined as straight GDP or GDP per capita which measures it against population. Looking at European Union nations in straight GDP for 2012 we find a disparity with Germany rated at the top with a GDP of $3,400,579 and at the bottom is Malta with a GDP of $8,689. Using the more balanced GDP per capita removes the bias against smaller nations and our 2012 results in this measure are, at the top Luxemburg with $107,206 followed by Denmark with $56,202 while at the bottom we have Bulgaria with $7,033 and just above them come Romania with $7,935. With such a disparity of GDP having the same currency which disallows independent adjustments to allow for these disparities the Euro as the uniting currency for the European Union was a guarantee of unavoidable difficulties. With these predictable stresses due to a unified currency and disparate economic outputs and productivities the European Union eventually had to come to depend upon the nations with the most powerful economic engines to uphold those who were destined to fall behind. This has led to high levels of distrust, resentment, dependency, and misgivings between the stronger nations and those who they prop up. Germany and France had been carrying the brunt of this burden and as long as these two were able to cooperate neither was overly resentful of their being put upon to prop up the weaker European Union economies such as Portugal, Greece, Spain, Italy and Ireland to name a few. The problem is of late acrimony and mud-slinging has replaced Franco-German friendship. At one end, nations such as Greece have been heavily resentful of the demands put upon them by German Chancellor Angela Merkel for all the financial sacrifices and belt tightening she has demanded as the price for bailing them out over their previous profligacy. Meanwhile, German Chancellor Merkel is fed up and furious at French President Francois Hollande over the French government’s internal problems, particularly the evidence of corruption and rule-breaking by its members. While French President Hollande believes that government investment and increased spending is the solution to the European Union and its individual nations’ economic woes, German Chancellor Merkel is resolved to stick to her formula of spending cuts and austerity. These two have an animus that goes far beyond their opposite approach to solve the economic woes of the European Union but has apparently evolved into a personal dislike that guarantees to produce great levels of stress, smoke and noise and little else. As stated earlier. Britain has chosen a very opportune time to reconsider their membership in the sinking ship known as the European Union.

Beyond the Cusp

February 17, 2013

Bulgaria Shows Promise in Choosing to Expel Hamas

Bulgaria has learned a tough lesson with the results that have come to light in their investigation of the terrorist bombing of a tour bus at the Burgas Airport, on the Black Sea. They traced the origins of the attack which killed seven and wounded thirty-two people, with three in intensive care directly to Hezballah terrorists who were likely acting under the auspices of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps. Needless to point out, but when has that stopped us, the Iranians, Hezballah and other similarly aligned entities all denounced the findings of the Bulgarian investigators. Now it seems the same groups are up in arms over the decision of the Bulgarian government to expel a delegation sent there by the terrorists ruling over Gaza, Hamas.

 

“We condemn this act, which reflects the scale of compliance with Zionist pressures,” Hamas spokesman Taher al-Nunu said, according to Ma’an. What a surprise having Hamas blame their being treated as the terrorist entity and thus undesirable visitors which they are on Israel, or as they are want to call it, the Zionist entity. My problem with their description using the term Zionist entity could describe anyplace in the world where someone who is a true supporter of Israel to the point of having hopes or plans on making their home in Israel. Fortunately, we all know when Hamas along with Hezballah, Ahmadinejad, Ayatollah Khamenei, President Morsi, President Abbas, or any of almost countless others of the same ilk use the term Zionist entity they are referring to Israel. What these enemies of the Jewish people probably do not realize is that many Israelis take being referred to as Zionist as a compliment of a high order and only object to anybody soiling such a noble word with their blasphemous intent. We could go down a litany of condemnations aimed at Bulgaria claiming they broke every civility and diplomatic nicety on and on from various Hamas spokespeople most of which would be names few of us recognize, but we all have seen this spectacle before and will likely witness it many more times in the future. One thing that can be said for Hamas, Fatah, and other Palestinian entities as well as the Iranian connections from Iran through Iraq and Syria all the way to the Mediterranean Sea with Hezballah is that there no lower limit to what they might find as insulting to their make-believe honor. Proof is the number of articles which appear so regularly as to become a common piece of almost every world news wrap-up stating how some terror aligned group is expressing their protest to some perceived insult to their honor. Perhaps we should offer them bandages for their bruised egos.

 

What probably made the protest from Hamas more poignant was the fact Hamas had touted this official, according to their spokespeople which was contested by the Bulgarian Foreign Ministry, delegation as proof that Hamas was making headway and becoming accepted in Europe and were no longer being treated as a terrorist entity. Well, back to square one and the terrorist entity label is still attached. Europe may not decide to place Hezballah into the terrorist bracket quite yet, but Hamas has not been let out of the little terrorist house. It would be my guess that Hezballah will join Hamas on the European terror lists before Hamas is removed, which is likely to never occur. Actually, there have been some promising stirrings and the slightest of indicators that some parts of Europe are awakening to the threat posed by the more radical members of their immigrant groups. We had made mention of this as a likelihood quite a while ago and had been roundly mocked for the idea. Looking at European history one will note that Europe appears at times to be asleep at the wheel but eventually they awaken and take back control of their ships of state. We may be witnessing the beginnings of this phenomenon. The earliest signs were made by such as Ayaan Hirsi Ali, Geert Wilders, Brigitte Gabriel and some very brave individuals who drew the Mohammad cartoons along with the newspapers and journalists and all the rest who have spoken truth and many paying a deep price for their convictions. History will hopefully place their names among former greats who were the few who stood against injustice and hatreds throughout history. May the future be a tribute to their warnings and make a world where speaking one’s mind and standing honestly for the principles that every individual has a right and the unfettered freedom to worship how they choose, speak truth freely, and nobody has the right to impose their realities on another becomes the rule of law over all of the world. A future filled with mutual respect, acceptance, tolerance and peacefulness. As I read somewhere, “And they shall beat their swords into plow-shares, and their spears into pruning-hooks: nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war anymore.”

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

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