It seems Channel 4 are going to broadcast a drama-documentary about UKIP winning a General Election.
‘It’s liberal-left poppycock!’ Ukip fury as C4 predicts race riots if Farage wins election
Row over Channel 4’s drama-documentary, ‘Ukip: The First Hundred Days’
Show airs tomorrow and portrays British life if party wins general election
Film shows society on the brink of collapse, three months after their win
Aide close to Ukip leader Nigel Farage said idea is ‘simply preposterous
‘Bring it on, we say, because this sort of thing simply serves to boost our ratings.’
The most interesting feature:
The provocative scenes play out against the backdrop of smoky pubs because Farage has lifted the smoking ban.
It could backfire. Those smokers who don’t know that UKIP would relax the ban might think of voting for them.
A crucial meeting of eurozone finance ministers over the future of Greece’s bailout broke down in acrimony after Athens angrily rejected the bloc’s insistence that it agree to complete its current €172bn rescue as “absurd” and “unacceptable”.
It is the second time in five days that negotiations between the new anti-austerity Greek government and its eurozone creditors have collapsed and it means Athens, whose public finances are deteriorating fast, could soon be left with no European financial backstop.
The eurozone gave Athens until Wednesday night to reverse course and seek an extension of the current programme, which is due to expire at the end of next week.
Jeroen Dijsselbloem, chairman of the eurogroup of finance ministers, said the time available for a Greek request was almost up: “We can use this week, but that’s about it,” he said.
As I understand it, there are three ways all this can pan out.
1) The EU blinks. Greece is offered debt relief and a relaxation of austerity, just to keep them in the EU. However, if Greece gets this, Italy and Spain and Portugal will immediately demand the same deal, and the crisis will deepen.
2) Greece blinks. Tsipras’ and Varoufakis’ bluff gets called. Greece returns to mounting debts and unemployment, just like before. The Syriza government falls.
3) Neither side blinks. Greece runs out of money, reneges on its debts, and exits the EU in a disorderly manner.
I expect Greece will blink. But former Chancellor Ken Clarke reckons Greece will leave the EU.
A Greek euro exit is inevitable and Britain must insulate itself from the economic shocks it would cause, Ken Clarke has said.
Speaking on the BBC’s Sunday Politics programme Mr Clarke said that there would be “knock-on effects” from a Greek euro exit.
“Just judging from the public statements of these latter-day Trotskyites who appear to have won the election in Greece, I can’t see how that can be reconciled,” he argued.
“I hope a very great deal of work is going on to minimise the impact on financial markets, on the United Kingdom – because it affects us just as much anybody else in the western world – to make sure that any knock-on effects of from their exit are minimised, and knock-on effects on the Greek people, who are going to suffer more … are also minimised as well.”
But there’s another possibility: the Russians and/or Chinese intervene. The new leftwing Greek government has been holding talks with both, and has said that there are “offers on the table.”
There is a very strong incentive for Putin to intervene. The expansion of the EU has destabilised Ukraine, and brought the EU almost into open conflict with Russia, and Putin would dearly like to inflict some damage on the EU. What better way to do that than to arrange for Greece to switch its loyalty from the EU to Russia? It would be a big reversal for the EU ‘project’ to lose a member state, and an even worse blow for that member to switch loyalties. It would mean that just as the EU had gained a foothold in Ukraine, Russia could gain a counter-foothold in Europe, to use as a powerful bargaining chip.
And it would fit in with other recent Russian moves in the Eastern Mediterranean. For example, Egypt:
*SISI: RUSSIA, EGYPT AGREE ON FREE TRADE ZONE W/ EURASIAN UNION
*SISI STRESSES IMPORTANCE OF MILITARY COOPERATION W/ RUSSIA
*EGYPT’S SISI THANKS PUTIN FOR SUPPORT IN TOUGH TIMES
*RUSSIAN DIRECT INVESTMENT FUND, EGYPT TO DEVELOP INVESTMENT
*SISI: RUSSIA, EGYPT SIGN AGREEMENT ON NUCLEAR POWER PROJECTS
*SISI: EGYPT, RUSSIA COOPERATION ON GLOBAL ISSUES IS IMPORTANT
*SISI :RUSSIA, EGYPT WILL TAKE COMMON STAND AGAINST TERRORISM
The president of Cyprus, Nicos Anastasiades, has said he is in talks with the Russian government to let its military use the island nation’s sea and airports. He made the announcement in an interview with Russia’s state owned news agency Itar-Tass today, having previously denied earlier reports that Cyprus had agreed a deal to lease its facilities with the Russian armed forces.
And if Tsipras and Varoufakis are playing their cards very boldly, it may be because they actually do have some good cards.
And it may not really be Tsipras and Varoufakis who are holding the cards, but Vladimir Putin.
If, as lot of people expect, Greece leaves the Euro, expect to see Putin in Athens the next day, and the Russian Black Sea fleet in Piraeus (owned by China, I believe) the day after.