Sunday, 1 March 2009

Wanker of the Week

Is the improbably named 'James T Kirk', for the following comment on the BBC News' Have Your Say:

"In their 2005 manifesto New labour promised a referendum on whether or not to sign the Lisbon treaty."

No, it was on the EU constitution, not the Lisbon Treaty. Irrespective of that, Blair did that to ensure the French held a referendum which he believed (rightly) would reject the Constitution and enable Britain and other countries to renegotiate some of the more ambitious aspects and gain more opt outs. This was achieved with the result that Lisbon really is just a tidying up exercise.

Well, as much as I like Star Trek (alright, alright, stop sniggering at the back... :-), this 'James T Kirk' is an utter wanker. I mean, does anyone seriously buy this shit? Gordon 'Courage' Brown didn't hold a referendum because he was scared that he would lose. As the Meerkat says, 'Simples'...

Meanwhile, most (though not all) of those making comments show their general ignorance by attacking Free Trade. My favourite is this:

We need a bit of both [Free Trade and Protectionism!]. Exporting comes from reciprocity [NB A protectionist concept, much favoured by the French...], and we need to keep key domestic skills safe.

BUT the net result should be that we export a little more than we import.

Eventually that WILL solve our economic woes.

You just can't be a net importer and fund it by we have seen.

Gordon-Charisma Brown, Brownutopia, Republic of Tax, Spend and Waste.

As much as this person has obviously picked out Gordon the Moron's, ahem, 'qualities', the statement does suggest one slight mathematical problem: how can all countries export a little more than they import?!!! That means that we can't all follow this policy, which makes it unsustainable... that way lies the 1930s Depression, to which protectionism made no little contribution.

What these muppets need to get is some basic economics (and history) lessons:

- Some countries import more than they export. This deficit can be funded in a number of ways: borrowing, a transfer / sale of assets abroad / etc.

- This is not a problem! It's a good thing!

- If a country can no longer afford - or is perceived as no longer being able to afford - to do this, its currency tends to depreciate against those of others. This makes its imports more expensive, and its exports cheaper, allowing it to reduce / eliminate its trade deficit. [For the benefit of the likes of Mr Kirk, this is one reason why joining the Euro is a really dumb idea - just look at its impact on Italy, for example...]

- This is a natural part of the economic cycle... like recessions. You can't 'cure' a recession, as idiots like Brown seem to think. Of course, you can make them worse, by entering them with a structural fiscal deficit, built up during a boom... But who would be stupid enough to do something like that?!

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