All you Europeans have surely heard the hallowed phrase spoken time and time again, by our most respectable politicians in a sincere and serious manner, at press conferences, EU-supertops, in the national parliaments and the House of Europutados in Strasbourg, and many many other settings:
‘We are making these drastic budget cuts so as to generate growth and jobs’.
Well, here in Spain the numbers for September are just in, and indeed, the austerity miracle cure is working as never before! After the fifth round of draconian budget cuts and tax hikes in nine months, unemployment is up 10 % since September 2011 (it now stands at a staggering 4.705.000 or 25.5 % of the work force) and economic contraction is expected to be some 3 % this year. Meanwhile, neither the budget deficit nor national debt are coming down, due to reduced revenue from a shriking economy. Bravo gentlemen! A great job done! Spain is saved! Just like Portugal and Greece have been famously dragged out of the mire by five years of Dr Euro’s Miracle Austerity Medicine!
Dear reader, do me a favour. Whenever you hear one of the Eurogues who lord it over us speak the sentence
‘We are making these drastic budget cuts so as to generate growth and jobs’
get up from your chair, wherever you are, and shout LIES! For a blatant lie it is. The austerity cuts are being made to save the toxic Euro which is the basis of unelected Brussels despotism, and to recue the banks and big business interests which are Brussels’ favourite pals.
And they are being made against all economic wisdom, and – worse – against the hard, undeniable evidence of recent experience which shows that it only plunges countries into a downward spiral with even less chance of recuperation.
To force such measures upon a national economy compares with a farmer who sells off the trunks of his cherry trees for firewood after a bad harvest.
Mr Olli Rehn, Brussels’ Austerity Tsar, stepped by Madrid yesterday to give Mr Rajoy his marching orders. By the looks of it, this very week Spain will ask for the Bail-Out; as soon, that is, as they manage to find a euphemism for ‘Bail-Out’ which hides what it really is: money in exchange for say, sovereignty and citizens’ rights. Expect, therefore, to see more of Dr. Euro’s Miracle Medicine to be applied this autumn, with – surely – the same salubrious effects as it has had so far.
Does anybody happen to have the blueprint for a guillotine lying about?
PS Oh, by the by: Eurostat, the famous Eurosceptic agency which always lies through its teeth to give Brussels a bad name, just came out with the unemployment numbers for the continent. Guess what? Unemployment in the EU countries which do NOT use the Euro is still way lower than in those that DO use the Euro. Isn’t that interesting now? (See my post ‘Chopping up the Milking Cow’ of April 3 last)
PPS Those who wish to know how truly dismal the Spanish situation is, should look at thishere article by Ambrose Evans-Pritchard.