Italy Declares War On Merkel And The EU

Matteo Salvini promises Eurosceptic surge in 2019 EU elections
Matteo Salvini promises Eurosceptic surge in 2019 EU elections – Picture:www.express.co.uk

There was never any doubt that the leaders of the Euroskeptic coalition now governing Italy planned to challence the EU’s ruling bureaucracy over Italy’s proposed budget. Both Deputy Prime Ministers, Luigi Di Maio of Five Star Movement and Matteo Salvini of The League, were adamant about locking horns with European Union leadership over all issues of sovereignty between now and May’s European Parliamentary elections. This battle, coming as it does as Angeal Merkel’s fraile coalition faces another major setback, indicates that Germany’s domination of the EU, if not at an end, is looking very vulnerable.

The Italian budget proposes both tax cuts and universal income and has kicked into touch the EU budget limit of 2.0% of GDP, coming in at 2.4%. It has put their Finance Minister, Giovanni Tria, in a difficult position because Tria doesn’t want to negotiate this budget with Brussels, preferring a less confrontational, read more pro-EU, approach.

Salvini and Di Maio, however, have other plans. And since we began covering this story before the Italian election back in March, the imperative that Salvini force the issue of the Troika’s demands – (the EU, European Central Bank and the International Monetary Fund) – back down their throats on debt restructuring/forgiveness.

Salvini’s emergence as the leader of this fight, was that Italy, because they are more than technically insolvent, have all the leverage in the negotiations. The size of their outstanding debt and the liabilities existent on the balance sheets of banks across Europe, most notably the nearly $1 trillion in TARGET 2 liabilities, are something Juncker, Draghi, Merkel and Christine LaGarde at the IMF simply cannot ignore. The reason Italy’s debt problem, and those of other EU members in southern Europe are so intractable is the single currency, which was created for political reasons without regard for the sheer economic stupidity of tying economies like those of Italy, Greece, Spain and Portugal to the German economic powerhouse. This cut off the debtor nations from their traditional escape route, devaluation.

To successfully challenge EU financial diktat, Salvini and Luigi Di Maio, leader of Five Star have to make a serious effort to negotiate a good deal for Italy with Brussels, Berlin and the IMF. This is why the budget squeaked past the 2.0% limit and then they walked it back to 2.0% but with provisions they knew would anger the EU finance ministers.

The point of this is to provoke Brussels into a punitive reaction and then paint them as the bad guys to shift public sentiment back towards an Italeave position. Italy’s problems are not solvable with Germany holding the purse strings for all the EU countries.

With a big swing towards Euroscepticism and nationalism under way in Germany it looks as though the days of the Federal Europe project are truly numbered. With voting due tomorrow in Bravaria’s regional election, the CSU, sister party of Merkel’s CDU and traditional ruling party in the Bravarian provincial government and their main rivals the Social Democrats see their respective votes collapsing. Alternate for Germany (AfD)is now pushing up towards 20% nationally and looks likely to have a significant presence in the Bravarian assembly after the votes are counted, while centre left voters are turning to The Greens. If AfD out polls the Greens and denies the CSU a path to a coalition government without them then that could have spillover effects for Angela Merkel.

The latest polls have AfD averaging around 11% versus a strong push up to 18% by the Greens. Given recent shock results we must doubt the accuracy of these polls, but given the recent history of anti – establishment parties it would not be a surprise to see AfD outperform their polling numbers on Sunday.

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German Election: Will Another Term For Merkel destroy German Economy

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Majority of Germans Favour Snap Election as Merkel Coalition Talks Stumble

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Germany Sees Fourfold Rise in Terrorism-Related Cases
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A Week Before Election 30% Of German Voters Still Undecided

Polling companies in Germany are indicating that support for Chancellor Angela Merkel’s conservative Christian Democratic Party is still slipping with the election only one week away. More disturbingly perhaps for Hausfrau – Volkfuhere Merkel is the news that over a third of Germans are still unsure how they will vote. An opinion poll published today (15 September) on Friday showing the number of undecideds was not coming down fueled uncertainty about the kind of coalition that will emerge from an election on September 24.

 

Merkel Faces Crisis As German Ruling Coalition Collapses

 

German Chancellor Angela Merkel faces a crisis in her ruling coalition after Bavarian Premier Horst Seehofer demanded she take steps to halt the tide of illegal immigrants entering the country. To have any chance of surviving, the government must present new initiatives for controlling illegal immigration, deal with the critical situation on the Austrian border …

New German Coalition in Peril as Potential Partners Clash over 200,000 Annual Migrant Limit

Reports that German Chancellor Angela Merkel has agreed a proposal from coalition partner and leader of the Christian Social Union (CSU) Horst Seehofer to limit the number of asylum seekers in Germany to 200,000 per year to secure a ruling coalition may be somewhat premature. Other coalition partners are not as positive on the policy.

Merkel Calls for Beginning of Coalition Talks With Greens, Free Democratic Party

German Chancellor Angela Merkel officially announced on Saturday for the first time that her conservative bloc of the Christian Democratic Union (CDU) and its Bavarian sister party Christian Social Union (CSU) will seek to form a coalition government with the centre right Free Democratic Party (FDP) and left wing loony Greens.


German Elections: Anti – EU party AfD 3rd In Polls

Elections take place in Germany this Sunday, September 24, for the federal assembly (Bundestag) and the presidency (Chancellor). While Angela Merkel looks set to win a fourth term as Chancellor and the most likely outcome of the election is another “Grand Coalition” between Christian Democrats and Social Democrats that coalition will be a much-weakened if late polls are to be believed.
More news from September 2017

The EU can go and F*** itself!’ Italian Politician’s Outburst Rallies Support In Italy

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European sovereign debt crisis could cause Eurozone implosion – ex-BoE chief

Are government economists and mainstream media finally catching up with what The Daily Stirrer and Boggart Blog’s finance expert Phil T Looker has said since we started publishing? Former Bank of England chief Mervyn King has written an article warning that Eurozone deabt problems pose a bigger threat to the EU than a British OUT vote in the referendum

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Italian Town ‘Taken Over’ By Nigerian Migrant Gangs
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How Many Times Can Lame Duck Merkel Regenerate Her Government?

Dr Merkel-who

This week the new series of Doctor Who launched amid much ballyhoo about the mysterious Doctor being played for the first time by a woman. While many pedantic Whovians (or whatever they call themselves,) are appalled and complain that the lead role belongs to a man, in my not so humble opinion Jodie Whittaker (best know to date for Broadchurch,) the thirteenth Doctor Who, looks as if she may be the best Doctor since David Tennant. She brought to the role a sense of fun which has been missing since Tennant. Both Matt Smith and Peter Capaldi, the two most recently transformed Doctors in what has become a long line of regenerated Doctors are excellent actors, but somehow lacked the charisma to carry off a role that needs to be played with an attitude of, “I know this story is bollocks, but it’s not meant to be taken seriously so let’s have fun.” What has this to do with angela Merkel and Germany? you might well ask. Indulge me, all will become clear.

In the past few years the show had come over all politically correct and disappeared up its own arse. Another field of human endeavour that was in the past a lot of fun but has now fallen into the trap of taking itself too seriously is politics. Take Germany for example. Germans have always been a bit prone to taking silly things seriously. That Master race nonsense a few decades ago is a case in point. Germany was the most prosperous and stable democracy in Europe under Hausfrau – Volksfuhrer Merkel until she won her third term as Chanellor. That victory had the same effect as being declared divine once had on Roman Emperors. Merkel began to believe her own publicity, and thought she could change the world by supporting schemes to unite Europe under a single government and flood the continent with third world migrants (aka cheap labour for Germany’s factories). And she believed she could succeed because Germans, the ignorant masses, would march in lockstep behind her.

And that’s when it all started to go wrong. Uncontrolled immigration caused social and economic problems, while Merkel’s popularity slumped so much that in the wake of the inconclusive election of September 2017 her conservative CDU party was forced into a coalition with their traditional rivals the socialist SPD to keep nationalist and Eurosceptic parties out of power. Yet Merkel, who had looked dead in the water, is still afloat, her political career having undergone more regenerations that Doctor Who.

Earlier this year, Merkel managed to avoid a potentially disastrous second election by finally, six months after the election, getting the Social Democrats (SPD) to sign up to a mutual suicide pact in the form of new Grand Coalition. This ensured cartel-style government of the political and business elites reigns in Germany to do the bidding the European Union and march towards political and financial integration which fewer and fewer Germans support.

The results of Merkel’ desperatly clinging to power have been catastrophic for the former dominant parties of Germany. The Social Democrats (SDP)  is spiralling towards minor party status, with recent polling now putting them behind five-year old Alternative for Germany (AfD) nationally, 16% vs. 18.5% in a recent poll by Die Welt. Worse news for the SDP is that the classical liberal Free Democrats are gaining ground on them too.

But, it’s not just the SPD that continues to hemorrhage support. Merkel’s own Christian Democratic Union (CDU) is now below 25% nationally, since its coalition with the Christian Social Union (CSU) now has the support from less than 30% of Germans nationally.

The sister party of Merkel’s CDU, the CSU, which is a regional party operating only in Bravaria,  is usually good for around 8-9% of that total, but their support in Bavaria is down below 40%, dropping to 35% as of last month’s poll numbers. So, only a week before Bavarian state elections, all the traditional parties are seeing their bases eroding.

The CDU are aware Merkel is a lame duck, having nailed her colours to the mast or a raft of deeply unpopular globalist policies, the only thing keeping her in power at this point is that there is little confidence among German voters that a new election would solve the problem, while the one thing Merkel has succeeded in throughout her decline is stabbing potential rivals in the back.

The AfD, not a far right party as mainstream media always claim, but centre – right party that rejects globalism and concepts such as multiculturalism and a borderless world, are not ready for government while the pro – business Free Democrats are natural coalition partners but not coalition leaders. One of the problems for the AfD is that since the ninteen thirties, nationalism has ben increasingly conflated with National Socialism. People who compare AfD, Britain’s UKIP, the Sweden Democrats, the Freedom Party in The Netherlands and France’s Front National and Italy’s ruling coalition to Hitler’s Nazis or Mussolini’s Fascists are poorly informed. Nationalism is not authoritarianism. Mohandas K Gandhi was a nationalist, as were Guiseppe Garibaldi, Mustafa Kemal, Charles de Gaulle and Irish republican leader Eammon de Valera. The politics of these leaders ranges from conservative to democratic socialist.

I have closely watched developments in German politics for some years, just as I have watched developments in other EU nations, having anticipated the break up of the community since I worked in the EU Commission in Luxembourg in the 1980s and learned that the long term plan was political integration and the creation of a European Superstate. It was never going to work of course, the only surprise has been that the reassertion of national independence took so long. But what has become clear recently is that the poll numbers for opposition parties like AfD are under-stated because of real fear of political retribution, and allegedly because of electoral jiggery – pokery. For example, in the recent Swedish election, anti – immigration, Eurosceptic party The Sweden Democrats (SDs) slightly under performed against expectations. In the run up to the election Swedish mainstream media and government figures mounted a massive smear campaign against the SDs, branding them Nazis and racists.

After the election, even though the SDs had come from nowhere to be the third largest party and justifiably claim a place in the governing coalition. This was resisted by the undemocratic parties of the left, and now Sweden faces months of political haggling without a legitimate government just as Germany did because Angela Merkel refused to accept the inevitable.

 

While all this is going on, democracy is under attack on other fronts.  Germany’s anti-hate speech laws are being used to arrest people for being politically incorrect, while the far left directors of US internet giants such as Google and Facebook are meddling in political matters having appointed themselves censors of news and opinions that does not suit their cultural Marxist agenda. From last year’s GDPR, an attack on free speech disguised as a measure to protect users’ privacy, to the latest rules on sharing memes, the clamp down on speech critical of the political status quo in Europe is happening quickly not just in Germany but across the EU. Even in Britain, where we are on the way out of the EU, these rules are being applied to suppress voices critical of Islam, government immigration policies and telling the truth about immigrant crimes.

How is this affecting the polls? We have seen the reults for ourselves, in the brexir refrendum, in Sweden, Germany, Italy, Poland, Austria and to a lesser extent in other EU member states that have held elections recently. Watch an interview like this one . with a German voter and we have to wonder if there are masses of ‘closet AfD voters’ there are in Germany like there were ‘closet Trump voters’ in the U.S. in 2016 or Brexit voters in the UK referendum?

Being branded racist or xenophobic or an ignorant, uneducated working class oik might not directly put people off holding their opinions, but the sheer nastiness, and sometimes the violence with which supporters of the left respond on finding somebody does not agree with their ideology driven authoritarian agenda can have a very real deterrent affect.

No major national elections are due for a while, but if significant numbers in Bravaria turn out to vote AfD and cause an upset in Bavaria’s state elections on the October 14th that could be the catalyst to nudge AfD forward nationally to seriously challenge Merkel’s own CDU in the polls.

This plays in to the unfolding political crisis in the democratic world that after Trump and Brexit, Merkel’s decline in Germany and victory for the anti – EU coalition in Italy isn’t on the horizon anymore. It is here, throughout the liberal democracies the old elites are on the back foot, the banking cartel and the domiation of the petrodollar are being challenged, political parties that differ only in name, while toeing the globalist line on policy are in decline, and after the failure of the US /NATO allies to dislodge Assad in Syria, the military – industrial complex can no longer use scaremongering to swing public opinion behind regional wars and regime change campaigns.

‘Islam Doesn’t Belong to Germany’ – New Interior Minister
While mainstream media was hailing the political mastery of Hausfrau – Volksfuhrer Merkel in negotiationg a new coalition deal to keep her in power for another four years, after Germany had been without a government for almost six months, The Daily Stirrer (and other alt_news sites to be fair) warned that the new government of Europe’s most powwerful economy was fragile and full of holes. Only days after Merkel was sworn in for a fourth term, the holes in her coalition started to appear … Continue Reading”>

German Election: Will Another Term For Merkel destroy German Economy


According to the latest round of opinion polling ahead of the German elections, Angela Merkel looks set to become the joint longest-serving modern German chancellor, that’s despite having been accused of “putting problems on the back burner, and staved off several attempts to indict her on treason charges for her role in the immigrant crisis. Business organisations have also raised doubts about the economic consequences of re-electing her, warning that her new term may bring “stagnation” for Germany.

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A Week Before Election b30% Of German Voters Still Undecided
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Merkel Faces Crisis As German Ruling Coalition Collapses


German Chancellor Angela Merkel faces a crisis in her ruling coalition after Bavarian Premier Horst Seehofer demanded she take steps to halt the tide of illegal immigrants entering the country. To have any chance of surviving, the government must present new initiatives for controlling illegal immigration, deal with the critical situation on the Austrian border …

New German Coalition in Peril as Potential Partners Clash over 200,000 Annual Migrant Limit
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Merkel Calls for Beginning of Coalition Talks With Greens, Free Democratic Party
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German Elections: Anti – EU party AfD 3rd In Polls

Elections take place in Germany this Sunday, September 24, for the federal assembly (Bundestag) and the presidency (Chancellor). While Angela Merkel looks set to win a fourth term as Chancellor and the most likely outcome of the election is another “Grand Coalition” between Christian Democrats and Social Democrats that coalition will be a much-weakened if late polls are to be believed.
More news from September 2017

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Is USA Preparing For War Against Russia In The Baltic Region?
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Controlled Media Blacks out German Mass Opposition to Nonwhite Invasion

U.S. To Station Nuclear Weapons in Germany Against Russia
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Watershed Moment In US – EU Relations, Merkel Says Europe Can No Longer Rely On America
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Germany offering Britain post-BREXIT access to the European market for an annual “fee”! Who do these sausage scoffers think they are? The German government might like to pretend otherwise but there are twenty six other EU member states involved in negotiating any post – Brexit trade agreement with the UK, and Germany is not overly popular with many of them.

Left Wing Hate Mob Protesting At G20 Turn Hamburg Into An Inferno.
Militant anarchists staged a second day of violent protests in Hamburg as the G20 summit in the city held its first sessions. According to local reports, at least 45 people have been detained and 159 police officers have been wounded in clashes. For the second day, police had to resort to water cannon to disperse protesters from various neo – fascist groups (OK, we know they call themselves anti – fascist but the pathetic little university dumbed down idiots do not understand was fascism is,) while buildings and dozens of cars were set on fire in the suburb of Altona.

EU Euronazis Raise Demand For Brexit ‘Compo’ To €100 Billion.
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Frankfurt Becomes First German City Where Natives Are Minority

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Figures show that 51.2 per cent of people living in Frankfurt have a migrant background, the city’s secretary of integration Sylvia Weber said: Well that sounds like a recipe for conflict.

French Prime Minister says: “Europe Is Falling Apart”
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Somali Rapist Was Not Deported: Rapes Again.
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Is Bilderberg A Sinister Group That Runs The World Or Just A Tea Party For Rich And Powerful People
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BoJo Was Correct – The EU Was A Nazi Idea
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Will Merkel’s Migrant Disaster Drive Germany’s AfD Into Power?
Results from local elections held in Germany last weekend indicate that German Chancellor Angela Merkel is in deep trouble. Her party, the Christian Democrats is losing votes to opponents from the right and left, largely because of the illegal immigrant crisis brought on by Merkel’s crazy ‘open doors’ immigration policy which ahas resulted in Germany admitting criminals, terrorists and many illiterates,

German Industrial Production Slumps For Third Month Running

Is This Why The EU Did Not Want Us To Leave?

 

Germany’s industrial base is showing consistent signs of an economic crisis amid trade tensions between the U.S. and the European Union. Output from German factories unexpectedly declined for a third consecutive month according to statistic reported by Reuters and Bloomberg.

The figures, published last Friday, showed a 1.1 percent decrease for September, missing economists’ forecast of a 0.2 percent increase. Exports from Europe’s manufacturing powerhouse fell 0.9 percent and the trade surplus, a point of contention with President Donald Trump, narrowed further.

The news came at the end of a challenging week for the Eurozone economy, with other published statistics showing fears of a trade war between western and eastern blocs denting manufacturing confidence and Germany reporting another drop in factory orders.

Berlin’s Economic Ministry blamed the apparent weakness on temporary bottlenecks related to new emission-test procedures for cars. “In light of the slow order intake but a large backlog of work, the industrial upswing should continue as the squeeze loosens,” it said in a statement, adding construction business is booming.

In the Netherlands, manufacturing production fell 0.9 percent in July, while Spanish output fell for a third time in four months. But there was better news from France, where production beat expectations by rising 0.7 percent. Separately, German labor costs rose 0.2 percent in the second quarter compared to the previous three months.

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Germany

Germany’s Dependence on Fossil Fuels and Russian Gas

When Hausfrau – Volksfuhrer Merkel’s grip on Germany seemed unassailable she was free to let loose several personal sacred cows on the German people. One of course was her disastrous ‘open doors’ immigration police, another was the eqully disastrous green enegry policy, and now that is in ruins too.

from Institute For Energy Research

Germany embarked on Energiewende in 2010 with the goal of eventually making Germany independent of fossil fuels. The idea was to phase out oil, coal, and natural gas to allow for drastic reductions in carbon dioxide emissions. Since 2009, Germany has spent over a hundred billion euros on solar and wind energy, but carbon dioxide emissions did not decline over that period. In fact, they have risen by about 2 percent. The financial obligations from the expansion of wind and solar energy will continue to burden taxpayers for another two decades and will end-up costing German consumers around 550 billion euros.

In 2017, Germany’s energy consumption was fueled primarily by fossil fuels (79 percent). Renewables including hydroelectric power provided 15 percent and nuclear energy 5 percent. Despite the generating sector providing just about one-fifth of Germany’s total energy consumption, it was targeted to phase out its fossil fuel generating capacity under Energiewende. When the tsunami hit Japan in 2011, Germany decided to phase out its nuclear power first despite the unlikelihood of a similar disaster hitting Germany. Germany’s nuclear generation has declined by 56 percent since it reached its peak in 2001. Germany’s nuclear plants are to be shut down by 2022 and its coal-fired plants are to be closed by 2030.

Germany backs up its wind and solar units with coal-fired and natural gas-fired generation. Germany has 36 billion metric tons of coal reserves and produces domestically about half the coal it consumes. Despite its desire to reduce carbon dioxide emissions, Germany is bulldozing centuries-old villages and displacing their residents to make way for open-pit brown coal (lignite) mines. Having very few reserves of natural gas, it imports natural gas by pipeline with over half of it coming from Russia. Germany is Europe’s biggest natural gas consumer, and its demand is expected to rise by about 1 percent over the next five years as it phases out its nuclear fleet.

READ ALL >>>

… And Germany is running out of energy …

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The real problem here is that, driven by the hysterical warnings of self interested pseudo-scientists, politicians have set unachievable targets for reducing emissions while demanding that national economies keep growing.

Climate Denial Finally Pays Off
This blog has always been sceptical of the scientific case for climate change. And we admit that NO we are not climate scientists, NO we have not published research papers in ‘peer reviewed’ science journals. Of the three main contributors (all retired or semi retired) one is an engineer who still lectures in engineering and …

Nobel Laureate Smashes the Global Warming Hoax VIDEO
Nobel laureate Ivar Giaever’s speech at the Nobel Laureates meeting 1st July 2015. Ivar points out the mistakes which Obama makes in his speeches about global warming, and shares other not-well known facts about the state of the climate.

Charlotte Church blames Syria’s brutal civil war on CLIMATE CHANGE (not ISIS, Assad or Obama)
Last Nights QT: Stephen Kinnock, Leanne Woor (obscured) Charles Moore, David Dimbleby (host) Charlotte, Stephen Crabbe (Image source) Classical singer turned left wing fuckwit showed exactly what is wrong with the left on Question Time last night Climate change played a role in Syria’s conflict, according to Charlotte Church. Speaking as part of the panel …

The Pain In Spain as Green Energy Policy Fails

You will not find anything in mainstream media, either print or broadcast, about the failure of the green energy initiatives that have left Spain in dire economic strais or Denmark in the dark. Bizarre, as other governments are pressing ahead with plans to make us reliant on these crackpot schemes and intellectual wanks of mad scientists …


Climate Scientists versus Free Speech and Freedom Of Information

This week four groups, whose boards represent a distinctly liberal world view and who oppose scrutiny of taxpayer-funded science by academics, asked the University of Virginia to disregard its agreement before the court with American Tradition Institute to provide the records of former climate scientist Dr. Michael Mann, which belong to the public. The groups, led by the far-left Union of ….

Ever Changing Ocean

The scientists warn us climate change will cause massive extinctions, species will be destroyed, nations will die, the oceans will swamp huge areas of land as sea levels rise and lots of scaremongering stuff like that. But life in the seas has survived much worse catastrophes, much more violent changes than anything we puny humand can conjure up. It is a measure of the arrogance of humans in general and scientists in particular to imagine we puny humans could destroy the planet.also availabe HERE

Climate Change and the Population Explosion
In all the debates about climate change and the effect of carbon dioxide emissions on the environment there is one issue that has a huge bearing on humanity’s relationship with our planet that neither politicians nor scientists will discuss. Population growth. So a philosopher has to step up to the mark and ask why people are encouraged to have children when we face so many population related problems?

Here’s A Snippet From A Brilliant Article On Climate Change
Those building the biblical Tower of Babel, intending to reach heaven, did not know where heaven was and hence when the project would be finished, or at what cost. Those setting out to solve the climate change problem now are in the same position. If we were to spend 10 or even 100 trillion dollars …

The Great Wind Turbine Catastrophe

Because of failure to invest in new coal and nuclear powered generating plants to provide the electric energy we need Briain now faces a serious shortfall in electricity supply as old stations, already well past their planned lifespan are forced to close. Seduced by the voices of academics and the science lobby, the government seems foolishly determined to rely on wind turbines for future electricity needs.

Dedollarisation contagion: Germany Calls For Global Payment System Independent Of US

In what can only been seen as a vote of “no confidence” in the US dollar as global reserve currency, which effectively gives the US a  monopoly over global trade settlements infrastructure, Germans foreign minister Heiko Maas yesterday called for the creation of a new payments system independent of the US that would allow Brussels to be independent in its financial operations from Washington and as a means of rescuing the nuclear deal between Iran and the west.

Maas may have stopped short of openly supporting the Russia / China bid to replace the US dollar, but and independent European settlements system would have to exclude the dollar in trades between European nations and the BRICS bloc.

The German daily Handelsblatt reported that Maas said “Europe should not allow the US to act over our heads and at our expense. For that reason it’s essential that we strengthen European autonomy by establishing payment channels that are independent of the US, creating a European Monetary Fund and building up an independent Swift system,” he wrote, cited by the FT.

Maas who has made clear his opposition to the US use of sanctions to maintain its stranglehold on world trade, said it was vital for Europe to stick with the Iran deal. “Every day the agreement continues to exist is better than the highly explosive crisis that otherwise threatens the Middle East,” he said. The unspoken subtext was clear: Europe is no longer willing to be a vassal state to US monopoly over global payments, and will now aggressively develop its own payments network that is not subservient to Washington’s every whim.


German foreign minister Heiko Maas (Picture: Zero Hedge )

Belgium basedSwift, global payment network owned by a consortium of banks, enables financial institutions worldwide to send and receive information about financial transactions. Swift is supposedly politically neutral and independent but it has been used to block transactions and enforce US sanctions against various countries, most notably Iran.

In 2012, the Danish newspaper Berlingske wrote that US authorities seized money being transferred from a Danish businessman to a German bank via the system for a batch of US-sanctioned Cuban cigars. The transaction was made in US dollars, which allowed Washington to block it although the USA has no legal or moral right to stop sovereign nations trading with any country they want to.

Thorsten Benner, director of the Global Public Policy Institute, a Berlin-based think-tank supported Maas’s, saying his intervention was the “strongest call yet for EU financial and monetary autonomy vis-à-vis US.”

The German foreign minister’s words emphasise the dilemma facing European politicians as they struggle to maintain trade relations with Iran while coping with the fallout of US sanctions imposed by the US against companies doing business with Tehran.

As the FT adds, the EU is determined protect European businesses from retaliation by Washington for trading with Iran, but has failed to convince EU companies more concerned about maintaining their access to the lucrative US market than in the more modest opportunities presented by Iran.

Last month Washington rebuffed a high-level European plea to exempt crucial industries from sanctions. Mike Pompeo, US secretary of state, and Steven Mnuchin, Treasury secretary, formally rejected an appeal for carve-outs in finance, energy and healthcare made by ministers from Germany, France, the UK and the EU.

Swift will also be affected. Unless it wins an exemption from sanctions, which is unlikely, it will be required by the US to cut off certain Iranian banks from its network by early November or face possible countermeasures against both its board members and the financial institutions that employ them.

Maas’s stark warning against US domination of global payments comes with relations between Germany and the US in their worst state for decades. Mr Trump has chastised Berlin over its large surplus in bilateral trade with the USA, its relatively low military spending and its support for Nord Stream 2, a new gas pipeline that will bring Russian gas directly to Germany.

In short: Europe has finally had enough and it plans on hitting Washington where it truly hurts: the money.

MERKEL CLINGS ON: German refugee deal with Greece saves Chancellor’s Job


Merkel haunted by the immigration issue (Picture: express.co.uk )

German Chancellor ANGELA MERKEL, whose leadership has been in deep trouble since the inconclusive election in September 2017, is continuing to cling onto her job as the fragile coalition she formed staggers from crisis to crisis. In the latest, a last minute deal with Greece that will see Germany send back migrants to Greece if they have already applied for asylum there allowed Merkel to escape a no confidence vote that could have forced her to resign.

The beleagured  Chancellor told a news conference today: “It’s good that we have got a result,” but Merkel’s Interior Ministry spokeswoman Eleonore Peterman added that she would not be able to reveal any details before the deal was formally signed.

Last week, the Ms Merkel struck a similar agreement on returning migrants to Spain, confirming a deal reached in June when her increasingly divided Government accepted it would take back asylum seekers whose “first entry into the European Union was Spain”.

The Greek deal would affect migrants entering via Germany’s border with Austria, enabling it to send the migrants back to the Mediterranean country within 48 hours.

The German government is also in “very advanced” negotiations on a similar deal with the Italian Government, and fully expects an agreement to be struck in the near future according to Peterman.

Last week, the Interior Ministry spokeswoman said last week that both Italy and Greece had made counter-demands on any deals agreed after announcing the breakthrough with Spain.

A pact with Italy would provide the biggest breakthrough yet in Angela Merkel‘s struggle to get a stranglehold on a migrant crisis that once again threatens to tighten its grip on Europe again.

The Italians are likely to be the fly in the ointment, having been at loggerheads with Brussels and several European allies including France, after refusing to take in thousands of migrants rescued at sea while demanding that others take them instead.

Sharp Rise In Fake Science Publications Embarrasses Germany

Over 5,000 research scientists working in German universities and other higher education institutes have published their research findings in journals run by quasi-scientific publishers, according to a media report released on Thursday.

When researchers publish their results in a scientific journal, it is anticipated that their research theory, scope, assumptions, exclusions, method and data have been subjected to rigorous scrutiny by other scientists in the field in a process known as peer review. Though in recent years the per review  process has been discredited because of the operation of an old boy network in academic research, the system if properly executed acts as a form of quality control, ensuring that studies are scientifically sound before being released to the public.

Quasi-scientific publishers, however, carry out little to no review of the articles (a system known as pal review, you get your pal to say nice things about your research, in return you say nice things about the results of his next project) and often publish the articles soon after receiving them, according to research carried out by German public broadcasters NDR and WDR as well as German news magazine Süddeutsche Zeitung Magazin.

The publishers approach scientists and companies around the world, encouraging them to publish their work in one of their journals. The researchers then pay to have their article or study published in one of these journals where it appears within a few days.

The report found that some 400,000 researchers worldwide have used these scientifically dubious journals — knowingly or inadvertently — to publish their work.

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