Friday, January 3, 2014

Big Spenders: Lamassoure - Almunia - Papandreou - Verhofstadt

Alain Lamassoure - Joaquin Almunia - George Papandreou - Guy Verhofstadt

There's quite a good case to be made for increasing the EU's budget. For one thing, the Euro will only survive if there are greater financial transfers between countries. For another, the EU has lately been given new powers which are meaningless if not properly funded. But, of course, you'd have to be mad to make any of those arguments in public these days. So step forward Lamassoure and Verhofstadt. As Members of the European Parliament, they don't have to worry too much about public opinion. Back in the capitals, Papandreou, the former Greek PM, became the poster-boy for greater transfers to the southern member states, and was liquidated by the Germans. As for Almunia, Spain's perpetual EU Commissioner, his mouth says spending cuts are necessary, whilst the southern Socialist in him screams, "Spend!".

With apologies to: pots of gold; eternal optimism; Anglo-Saxon brutality; MAD