We Report – You Decide
The European community, led by
is trying to bully the small island nation of Cyprus. The banking system in that country, largely
through its own fault, is near a state of total collapse. Europe is being asked to bail it out, which
seems reasonable since Europe has bailed out much, much larger banking systems
in countries like Spain. But political considerations have raised
their ugly heads.
For reasons only understood if one understands bullies,
Cyprus needs to raise 5.8 billion
Euros to get a 10-13 billion Euro bailout.
The original plan was to tax bank deposits, in effect to take part of
everyone’s bank account. This was as
unacceptable as it was idiotic.
Petros Giannakouris/Associated Press
With anger and anxiety growing across
Anastasiades’s new plan would scrap a tax on bank deposits. Experts warned,
however, that the deposit-tax plan might need to be revisited unless the
government found other means to reach the goal of raising €5.8 billion to
satisfy Cyprus ’s
creditors and unlock the full bailout funds. Cyprus
So what’s the new plan?
The plan sent to Parliament would nationalize pension funds from state-run companies and conduct an emergency bond sale to help raise the €5.8 billion. Gone was any reference to a deposit tax, which Parliament roundly rejected in a vote Tuesday.
But that plan offends
Before concrete details emerged, German leaders made it clear they would not back a deal that involved nationalizing the state-owned companies’ pensions, a measure that is rejected in
as more socially dangerous than even the original plan to tax smaller savings. Berlin
In a closed-door meeting with members of her junior coalition partner, the Free Democrats, Chancellor Angela Merkel made clear her impatience with the government in Cyprus, stating that “under no circumstances can we give up our principles,” the public television network ARD reported.
Now it’s nice that Germans have principles. It would have been even nicer if they had those principles back when, say, they were murdering 6 million or more Jews, Eastern Europeans and other peoples. It would be nice if they had those principles when some gratitude is required for the postwar aid given to
Germany or the protection West Germany
had from Soviet occupation.
As for the Cypriots, they are doomed no matter what. Even if they get a bailout the economy will be devastated in the short term. So the recommendation is that they leave the Euro, set up their own currency and suffer the consequences. They will suffer almost the same if they don’t, but this way they will have the satisfaction of standing up to bullies. And who knows, maybe
has a lot of wealthy citizens at risk here will do something.