Tag Archives: Italy

Salvini the Kidnapper Officially Has the EU Scared, by Tom Luongo

The EU is toast. From Tom Luongo at tomluongo.me:

A court in Sicily has ruled that Interior Minister, leader of The League and all-around Euroskeptic bad-ass Matteo Salvini should stand trial for kidnapping migrants held in abeyance off Italy’s shores.

“I confess,” Salvini said in a video posted to his Facebook page, “there is no need for a trial. It’s true, I did it and I’d do it again.”

“I risk 3 to 15 years in prison for blocking illegal landings in Italy. I have no words,” wrote Salvini, the leader of the ultra-nationalist Lega (League) party, which now rules Italy in a coalition with the anti-establishment Five Star Movement (M5S).

If this wasn’t so stupid it would be hysterical, actually. But it exists and it’s an attack on Salvini that has a number of angles to it.

As Dr. Steve Turley explains in the video below one of the goals of this attack is to drive a wedge between Five Star Movement (M5S) and its coalition partner, The League.

Early returns on this look to be it will go nowhere as M5S leader Luigi DI Maio supported Salvini. But, the real issue isn’t the coalition government.

If somehow Di Maio can’t ride herd over his faction with the Italian parliament and they vote to allow this trial to go forward then M5S will continue sinking into obscurity and The League’s rising poll numbers will accelerate.

As Turley points out it is not in M5S’s best interest to betray its partner at this point. They enjoy parliamentary representation well above their current polling.

So, they would jeopardize everything they’ve worked to shape Italian domestic policy.

But that’s not the real issue here. The real issue is this is an attempt by the EU and The Davos Crowd behind them to slow down the integration of the Euroskeptic movement around Europe to challenge the current status quo in the European Parliament.

Salvini called for a “League of Leagues” after his meeting with Hungary’s Viktor Orban.

That’s why Salvini is calling for “A League of Leagues” across Europe.  He will succeed.

This is the guy who successfully rebranded the secessionist Northern League into the MIGA party – Make Italy Great Again. 

Then he and Five Star Movement leader Luigi Di Maio navigated the Italian Swamp to form a government experts said couldn’t work, while simultaneously neutering establishment stalking horse Silvio Berlusconi.
Thanks to Salvini’s strategic genius Italian politics will never be the same again.  His League now polls around 30%, which bodes well for it in next year’s European Parliamentary Elections.

Because now his sights are MEGA – Make Europe Great Again.

In fact, this frivolous lawsuit is prima facia evidence that the EU oligarchs in Brussels are officially scared of what’s coming in May’s European Parliamentary elections.

If Salvini wasn’t a threat they wouldn’t be going after him this way.

If you bind Salvini down with having to whip up support in Italy he’s not spending that time convincing the leaders of Alternative for Germany (AfD) or Marine Le Pen’s National Rally to coalesce into a unified opposition against the hardcore leftist European integrationists.

Populist Euroskeptic movements are still rising all across Europe. And the EU needs to get past this election to ensure that the real power in Brussels remains in the hands of The Davos Crowd. This has become an existential threat to the European project.

It has to stay on course despite the will of the people of Europe.

It’s an act of pure desperation. It’s no different than how they are handling Brexit. And it’s why the EU will not cave on Brexit until the last minute, if at all. They cannot empower Salvini, Le Pen, Kurz, Orban, et.al. against them.

Caving to the U.K. on Brexit will reveal how weak they truly are.

So, Salvini and Di Maio were right to embrace the accusations rather than soft-peddle. The people are craving competent leadership and this initial show of solidarity demonstrates that.

This will have to be dealt with and it will be a real test of the political situation in Italy. If the Senate votes this down then Salvini can ignore it and, worse for Brussels, campaign harder on it.

It will also shore up his support abroad as the real prize, the European Commission Presidency comes into focus. If it fails then that will make it much harder to put together a coalition strong enough to block Jean Claude-Juncker’s expected successor.

The future of the EU actually hangs in the balance on this frivolity. That tells you just how desperate things really are for the current leadership of the rapidly disintegrating European Union.

 

 

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The Tragedy Of The Euro, by Alasdair Macleod

The euro’s failure at inception wasn’t a certainty, but now it is. From Alasdair Macleod at goldmoney.com:

After two decades, the euro’s minders look set to drive the Eurozone into deep trouble. December was the last month of the ECB’s monthly purchases of government debt. A softening global economy will increase government deficits unexpectedly. The consequence will be a new cycle of sharply rising bond yields for the weakest Eurozone members, and systemically destabilising losses in the bond portfolios owned by Eurozone banks

The blame-game

It’s the twentieth anniversary of the euro’s existence, and far from being celebrated it is being blamed for many, if not all of the Eurozone’s ills.

However, the euro cannot be blamed for the monetary and policy failures of the ECB, national central banks and politicians. It is just a fiat currency, like all the others, only with a different provenance. All fiat currencies owe their function as a medium of exchange from the faith its users have in it. But unlike other currencies in their respective jurisdictions, the euro has become a talisman for monetary and economic failures in the European Union.

Recognise that, and we have a chance of understanding why the Eurozone has its troubles and why there are mounting risks of a new Eurozone systemic crisis. These troubles will not be resolved by replacing the euro with one of its founding components, or, indeed, a whole new fiat-money construct. It is here to stay, because it is not in the users’ interest to ditch it.

As is so often the case, the motivation for blaming the euro for some or all the Eurozone’s troubles is to shift responsibility from the real culprits, which are the institutions that created and manage it. This article briefly summarises the key points in the history of the euro project and notes how the mistakes of the past are being repeated without the safety-net of the ECB’s asset purchases.

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Macron May Trigger Debt Crisis with Yellow Vest Crackdown, by Tom Luongo

If the Yellow Vest protests upend the stability of French society and the government, it could lead to a debt crisis. From Tom Luongo at tomluongo.me:

The Yellow Vests have reached critical mass. And the movement has now created the perfect storm for President Emmanuel Macron.

He can no longer ignore it, even though he tried to do so. And his lack of understanding of the situation as well as his open contempt for his opposition has placed him in a political vice.

Ignoring the problem will only make him look weaker and more disinterested. He could address the situation, put France first and step aside for new elections, which is the decent thing to do.

But, he’s chosen the predictable third option, crack down on the protesters in a futile show of strength. Authoritarians react to challenges like clockwork.

Disobedience is met with violence. More disobedience is met with more violence.

Before last weekend’s Act VIII protests Macron had one of the Yellow Vests original organizers, Éric Drouet, a truck driver, arrested and released pending a trial for “organizing an undeclared demonstration” while meeting with friends at a restaurant.

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Yellow Vest Riots Spread: Week Five, by Bruce Bawer

The money quote from the article: “Perhaps the question should not be why Western Europeans are rioting but why they did not start rioting a long time ago.” From Bruce Bawer at the gatestoneinstitute.org:

  • Across Western Europe, ordinary citizens feel ignored and condescended to by their political, business, academic, and media elites. Against the will of most of these citizens, their leaders are gradually surrendering their nations’ sovereignty to the EU.
  • Also against these citizens’ will, their nations have been flooded with Muslim immigrants who embody a major cultural challenge, have caused massive social unrest, and represent a devastating economic burden.
  • Although it is increasingly obvious that taxpayer-funded Islamization is leading Western Europe down the wrong path, the EU, which stands foursquare behind this disastrous development, refuses to reverse course.
  • Perhaps the question should not be why Western Europeans are rioting but why they did not start rioting a long time ago.
“Yellow vest” protesters gather at Place de l’Opera on December 15, 2018 in Paris, France. (Photo by Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images)

Paris has now seen its fifth weekend of street demonstrations by the so-called gilets jaunes, or “yellow vests,” although reports suggest that things may be finally winding down. Meanwhile, the protests — which in many instances rise to the level of riots, with innumerable examples of looting, vandalism, and arson – have spread. The last couple of weekends have seen disturbances in other major French cities, such as Toulouse, Bordeaux and Lyon, as well as in cities in the Low Countries, including Brussels, Amsterdam, Rotterdam, The Hague, Nijmegen and Maastricht. This weekend, in London, as the tension, confusion, and frustration surrounding Brexit have intensified and the possibility of a second referendum seemed to increase, yellow-vested protesters, most of them apparently supporters of Brexit, blocked major bridges and shut down streets in the city center.

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All (Political) Roads Lead To Massively Higher Government Spending, by John Rubino

All of the revolutions, quasi-revolutions, and proposed revolutions out there are pushing for higher spending and less taxes. That’s problematic when the overthrown governments are deeply in debt. From John Rubino at dollarcollapse.com:

The past few years have seen more than the usual amount of political upheaval. But, interestingly, most regime changes have resulted in pretty much the same thing: Higher government spending and bigger deficits.

Apparently the only “reforms” today’s voters will accept – which is to say the only actions that don’t get a leader kicked out of office – involve spending rather than saving money.

Three recent examples:

The US
Republicans – the party of smaller government – gained control of the White House and Congress in 2016, and proceeded to take a meat ax to bloated entitlements, lowering the government’s share of the economy to levels not seen since the Reagan years.

Just kidding. They tried to eliminate the newest entitlement, Obamacare, but failed to produce even a coherent proposal. So instead they cut taxes, expanded the military and left everything else on autopilot. Now, nine years into a recovery with official unemployment below 4% — and with the small-government party in charge:

U.S. budget deficit approaches $1 trillion

(MarketWatch) – The Treasury Department says that adjusted for timing-related transactions, the deficit would have been $270 billion over the last two months compared to $250 billion during the same period the prior year, with tax revenue up by 1% but spending up by 4%.

The budget picture is deteriorating as the U.S. taxes individuals and companies less and spends more, mostly on defense and benefit payments to an aging population. Though a growing economy is softening the blow, it’s possible that the annual deficit will top $1 trillion this year.

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Italy, the EU, and the Fall of the Roman Empire, by Alastair Crooke

The EU is trying to stop rising nationalism across Europe, but in so doing may accelerate it instead. From Alastair Crooke at strategic-culture.org:

The EU leadership is trying to contain a crisis that is emerging at increasing speed: this challenge comprises the rise of contumacious states (i.e. the UK, Poland, Hungary and Italy), or of defiant, historic ‘cultural blocs’ (i.e. Catalonia) – all of whom are explicitly disenchanted with the notion of some coerced convergence towards a uniform EU-administered ‘order’, with its austere monetary ‘disciplines’. They even dismiss the EU’s claim to be, somehow, a part of a greater civilizational order of moral values.

If, in the post-war era, the EU represented an attempt to escape the Anglo-American hegemony, these new defiant blocks of ‘cultural resurgence’ which seek to situate themselves as interdependent, sovereign ‘spaces’ are, in their turn, an attempt to escape another type of hegemony: that of an EU administrative ‘uniformity’.

To exit this particular European order (which it originally was hoped, would differ from the Anglo-Americanimperii), the EU nevertheless was forced to lean on the latter’s archetypal construct of ‘liberty’ as empire’s justification (now metamorphosed into the EU’s ‘four freedoms’) on which the EU strict ‘uniformities’ (the ‘level-playing-field’, regulation in all aspects of life, tax and economic harmonization) have been hung. The European ‘project’ has become seen, as it were, as something that hollows out distinct and ancient ‘ways-of-being’.

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Salvini Takes Control of Europe’s Future, by Tom Luongo

Will Italy face off with the European Union? From Tom Luongo at tomluongo.me:

Deputy Prime Minister Matteo Salvini just declared himself the leader of the Europe’s future.  He refuses to budge one inch in negotiations with the European Union over Italy’s budget now threatening to take down the government.

And in doing this he not only speaks for Italians, he is now speaking for that growing part of the European population who sees what the EU is morphing into and recoiling in horror.

Protests in France over Emmanuel Macron’s new tax on diesel have turned violent.  The British leadership has completely betrayed the people over Brexit.  They may win this battle but the animosity towards the Britain’s leadership will only grow more virulent over time.

As the core leadership in France and Germany fades in popularity, held in place because of domestic political squabbling, Angela Merkel and Macron are ratcheting up the rhetoric against the rising nationalism Salvini represents and are now pushing hard for their Federation of Europe before both of them leave the scene in the next few years, at best.

If they lose their battles with Salvini and Hungary’s Viktor Orban they may be run out of office with pitchforks and firebrands.

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