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Sep 10 2008

About kissing and poverty in Africa

Published by at 2:17 pm under Europe,Opinion

First published on my old blog on 24/11/2005. 

Oops, first mistake, Frau Merkel! Your stance on the EU finance deadlock is wrong. Change tack while you still can and side with the “rooinekke” (Tony Blair’s people). Because the “kakies” are right on this issue and France is wrong. 

If it’s true that the new German government will try to move closer to the Anglo-American bloc, then this is a good place to prove your bona fides. But, there’s another good reason for you to side against France on this issue… 

The “women charmers” want nothing to do with Blair’s point that the EU should cut back drastically on the subsidies it pays to its farmers. These subsidies make EU agricultural products cheaper than they would otherwise have been and so makes it impossible (or very difficult) for emerging and third world countries to break into the EU with the fruit of their main economic activity – products from the farm. 

In short, the EU agricultural subsidy paid to EU farmers is a “poverty tax” on third world farmers. Nothing less. 

There are a few “major trends” (as I call them) in the world economy . Globalisation is one. The trend against apartheid in South Africa was another example. This trend grew ever stronger from the 60′s to the 70′s and into the 80′s, until it became impossible to fight against in the early 90′s. 

With these “big trends” one should always be careful to stand in the right corner. In other words, one should always make sure that you’re siding with the winners…that you are on the right side of the trend. 

A recent example of a politician who “took on” a major trend and lost (because you can only lose against a major trend) was Franz Müntefering and his (now famous) attack on “the locusts”. 

The “world voice” against rich world agricultural subsidies is growing louder by the day – and will eventually win the battle. This is another “big trend” that no-one (also not the EU and certainly not France and Frau Merkel) can fight against. How long it’ll take for these subsidies to go, is unknown. Probably many years from now. But, they’ll go. Discrimination against third world farmers will stop – one day. 

So, Frau Merkel, jump to the other side. You’re on the losers’ side. 

Which I found interesting, for another two reasons: Firstly, I thought you were going to be strong on “principles”….that you were going to be the leader who always let herself be led by “the principle of the case”. Obviously not. “Interests” won over “principles” on the very first move you made as the new Chancellor. 

Secondly, as a member of the market-loving CDU you should really have come up with a “knee-jerk reaction” against market-interventions such as these silly agricultural subsidies. 

I see you’ll be off to meet with “soutie” Blair next. Maybe, just maybe, he can convince you to jump sides. 

But, then again….that good-bye kiss on the hand will probably linger on the female mind a bit longer – and make it just that wee bit to difficult for you to turn your back on the kisser.

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