Dissolution

Well, we didn’t have to wait long for the EU to start demanding more money for its bloated budget, did we?

“It is extraordinary that the Commission should demand an increase in the EU budget that is bigger than the rescue package that was agreed for Cyprus earlier this week.”

They’re utterly shameless.

As for Cyprus:

“Nobody knows what is going to happen. The economy could go into a free fall,” said Dimitris Drakopoulos, from Nomura.

The country has just lost its core industry, a banking system with assets equal to eight times GDP, and has little to replace it with. Cyprus cannot hope to claw its way back to viability with a tourist boom because EMU membership has made it shockingly expensive. Turkey, Croatia or Egypt are all much cheaper.

The way I see it, the Mediterranean countries should be queuing to get out of the EU now. But at the moment they all still seem to be strangely enamoured of it, as if it’s a dream they really really don’t want to let go of, even as it’s turning into a nightmare.

It’s not the only dream that’s been turning into a nightmare. I was wondering today whether every institution is prone to inevitable decay, and that what goes up inevitably comes down again not long after. A hundred years ago the medical profession was making giant strides in understanding diseases as caused by bacteria and viruses, and finding effective treatments for them, and thereby defeating diseases that had plagued humanity for millennia. But just one hundred years on, the same medical profession believes that more or less every disease is caused by… tobacco smoke! What a rapid reversion to mediaeval superstition! What a stunningly fast decline.

It’s as if, whenever a few medical or scientific giants grace the world, they are promptly followed by pigmies.

And it’s not just the medical profession. Science is afflicted with the same decay. Global warming/climate change evinces similar signs of derangement, and it has even burrowed deep into the one organisation that has embodied the best of science over the last 50 years: NASA. They have a wonderful set of achievements, including putting the first man on the moon. But now they also have James Hansen, who believes that trace amounts of CO2 in the atmosphere lead to runaway global warming, and compares coal trains to “death trains”. It’s another sad decline and fall.

Perhaps it’s all quite simple and predictable. A few scientific giants make their mark, and are held in justifiable awe for their achievements. Their successors, who take on their mantle when they pass on, are treated with the same awed respect – except that none of them are big enough for the role. They are all like so many Sergeant Bilkos who have been promoted to become generals.

It’s not just medicine and science either. All our politicians are small people these days. And they all have small, mean dreams. We have no statesmen (as Junican was complaining in the comments today).

And the media too. They’re in a state of terminal decay as well.

And philosophy is more or less dead too. I have recounted before how the great intellects of 1950s Britain could be watched debating earnestly with each other for hours, wreathed in clouds of smoke from their pipes, in the early days of television. There’s nothing like that now. A ‘debate’ seldom lasts five minutes these days. And even then it’s not really a debate. And of course they wouldn’t be allowed to smoke.

Everything is rotten.

And we seem to be living in a time of general dissolution, in which everything is dissolving, and everything is ceasing to work properly – but nobody can quite face up to the awful fact, and pretends that nothing has really changed at all.

About Frank Davis

smoker
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20 Responses to Dissolution

  1. wobbler2012 says:

    I think people over there in Cyprus haven’t grasped the insanity of the situation, they trust the banks with THEIR money are told they can only withdraw 300 of THEIR OWN money a day?? That is the madness of the situation to temporarily keep this EU house of cards going.

  2. Furor Teutonicus says:

    The cypriots have only themselves to blame.

    Just what DOES a “Government” have to do theses days, to get the people to revolt?

    • harleyrider1978 says:

      Furor theres a long standing rule when it comes to despots or abusive governments in control. Maintain the lowest level of life for the people ie welfare etc. The egyptians maintained a wealth of wheat in storehouses around the country to feed the people in times of famine or withheld it in times of revolt.

      I suppose these Cypriots are afraid if they go it on their own, The tit of the EU will no longer feed them…………..Point here is what the EU has done shows just how volatile their own EU future is.

      In america the government creates its own Currency accounts called M-1 THRU M-6 if I remember right. When one is tanked they simply create a new one…………and the presses roll on!

    • beobrigitte says:

      Just what DOES a “Government” have to do theses days, to get the people to revolt?

      Years ago I had a boss who had to implement quite restrictive alterations to his work force.
      Instead of just dictating them, he pinned a note up on the notice board, asking for staff to join him for a beer in a local pub after work.
      Almost everyone did attend. We were told that he was directed to interfere with the 3 things that should never be touched: staff holidays, staff working hours and working conditions as this lights a fuse for a massive detonation. He also told us that the best he could do was delaying the inevitable before he leaves but he’d require our support.
      We listened, we discussed and we acted united. As a workforce we were unbeatable for as long as we had this boss. After he left there was only revolt and the detonation did happen.

      Governments need to understand that they NEED the people’s support – e.g tobacco control has introduced and continues to push for further alienation of the SMOKING POPULATION, so one of the many fuses is lit. It is just a matter of WHEN and WHERE the first explosion happens.

  3. Junican says:

    I’ve been reading the new Scottish Tobacco Control Strategy tonight. Here is the URL (courtesy of Freedom to Choose (Scotland):

    Click to access 00417331.pdf


    It is worth reading – if you can stand it.
    What struck me is this:
    Tobacco Control think that the can go on salami slicing ad inf. They think that no one will notice the gradual extension of the creeping prohibition. But that is not true. They can get away with it for a while, but, eventually, people will notice. We have already seen this effect with the plain packaging consultation fiasco.
    It can only get worse for Tobacco Control as more and more people become aware.

    • beobrigitte says:

      I’m afraid, I didn’t get very far with reading that Tobacco Control Strategy nonsense tonight.

      I stopped at the sentence

      CREATING a smoke free generation”

      It told me everything I need to know.

      I just wonder if this “creation” incites some fanatics; the creation of a generation of people is only attributed to god, who did lay down GUIDELINES for the behaviour of a functional society.

      Perhaps tobacco control could peruse these guidelines and get out of all our lives!

  4. waltc says:

    On Topic: Amen. I think we’re all whistling past the graveyard now and what we’re whistling is snatches of old songs and sayings (“”land of the free,” “fight on the beachheads”) to convince ourselves that things are still what they were and that the graveyard is something we can actually get past instead of seeing that the whole damn thing is a graveyard of all those ideals.

  5. harleyrider1978 says:

    Cyprus President says they will not leave the EU! Even after the EU cuts the life out of Cyprus and its people. The stranglehold on member nations is a death grip as if Cyprus left the EU it could devalue its own currency enuf to make it a cheaper vacation spot than other places. This is Cypruses only viable option at this point,yet their President still defys reality of the fix his island nation is in. All EU member nations should take heed. The EU will require you to fall upon your own sword before you can leave……………..

    • nisakiman says:

      It’s what Greece should have done two years ago, Harley. Had they defaulted and gone back to the Drachma then, they would probably by now be glimpsing the light at the end of the tunnel.

      As it is, they have a grey vista of unending economic misery ahead.

      • melinoerealm says:

        Υes, and the few sane voices in Greece, were buried under tons of official media propaganda.
        I think that’s where people’s strikes need to be directed at, for now. Destroy the brainwashing machinery, it’s tacky techniques, it’s whole presence. It’s the “official media”, or rather the official propaganda machinery for shady policies – the real problem right now.

  6. roobeedoo2 says:

    Smoking in Syria was banned inside cafes (hookah bars), restaurants and other public spaces by a presidential decree issued on 12 October 2009 which went into effect on 21 April 2010. Syria was the first Arab country to introduce such a ban.

    http://metro.co.uk/2013/03/29/war-child-7-joins-front-line-fight-with-rebels-in-syria-3564995/

    • Frank Davis says:

      And in 2011 the Syrian civil war began.

      I doubt if the smoking ban was the primary cause, but I bet it angered a lot of Syrians.

      • beobrigitte says:

        People are angered for many reasons; if you add to it, they have had enough. In EVERY report I see about the Syrian conflict, I see people smoking. Smoking seems to have become a symbol for the people of Syria.
        This reminds me of a question; HOW MUCH money has tobacco control given to these people in order to SURVIVE?

        I have seen many, many donation appeals in recent days; I normally have no problem donating. I just would require TRANSPARENCY with respect to HOW my donation is going to benefit the people in dire need. Needless to say, SMOKING BANS do not enter dire needs.

        • margo says:

          By the way, are you getting the feeling that we in the UK are being nudged by the media (Channel 4 News particularly) to want our troops to intervene in Syria?

  7. cherie79 says:

    A friend of mine sold a house in Cyprus a few weeks ago and his cash is currently with his solicitor there and, naturally, he is worried sick and has no idea what will happen. Also read about the English woman who sold her house here and transferred the money to Cyprus to buy a house there and is now stuck. Why should these people have to pay? they though the EU was a safe place to buy.

    • Furor Teutonicus says:

      XX they though the EU was a safe place to buy.XX

      Then they are fuckwits, and deserve everything they get. It is not as if this shite has not been on the horizon for a couple of years!

  8. melinoerealm says:

    IMF is soooooo worried about the environment and the ecology…. how sensitive of them…. really I am moved. I would weep, but can’t seem to find my packet of handkerchiefs… :-)

    http://www.examiner.com/article/imf-calls-for-higher-gas-taxes-the-u-s

    • beobrigitte says:

      It isn’t only the US….. My gas bill has become an onion paper; every time I open it, it brings tears to my eyes.
      I think I will visit a local wood in the middle of the night…. Just need enough loading space.

    • margo says:

      I am so sick of this cure-all hypocritical policy of raising the prices – so the rich can go on regardless while the rest of us are forced to make cuts.

    • Furor Teutonicus says:

      XX IMF is soooooo worried about the environment and the ecology XX

      Me too! I mean DAMN! You just wat to SEE the dandruff problem the global warming Godess is having here”

      15 cm MORE snow, tonight!!!!

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