Sunday, March 29, 2009

Easy like Sunday Morning

Meghan and I have been working hard these last few weeks and with hard work I think it is very important to find simple pleasures. I have two in particular that helps me get my mind off things. One is a good solid blues beat. I love how a good blues tune can capture up all of your troubles and make one melodious masterpiece out of them. The second is wine. I've always liked a good glass of wine but it is the perfect end to my days lately. These two things go wonderfully together. I seem to appreciate one more when I've had a little of the other.

Tillie has been pretty sick today. Not the, "Aww, she's sick!" but the, "Oh Gross! Tillie just got sick over here!" I won't go in to details but we fed her some white rice and pumpkin filling in hopes to settle that stomach. It seems to be working, for now.

There is an already famous speech that was made the other day by Daniel Hannan, a member of the English Parliament, that I found inspiring. I have a great love for the way well educated Englishmen articulate themselves and I can accredit that affinity to one of my favorite heroes of all time: Winston Churchill. The speech isn't long and I love reading it so I'm going to quote it here:

"Prime Minister, I see you’ve already mastered the essential craft of the European politician, namely the ability to say one thing in this chamber and a very different thing to your home electorate. You’ve spoken here about free trade, and amen to that. Who would have guessed, listening to you just now, that you were the author of the phrase ‘British jobs for British workers’ and that you have subsidized, where you have not nationalized outright, swathes of our economy, including the car industry and many of the banks? Perhaps you would have more moral authority in this house if your actions matched your words? Perhaps you would have more legitimacy in the councils of the world if the United Kingdom were not going into this recession in the worst condition of any G20 country?

The truth, Prime Minister, is that you have run out of our money. The country as a whole is now in negative equity. Every British child is born owing around £20,000. Servicing the interest on that debt is going to cost more than educating the child. Now, once again today you try to spread the blame around; you spoke about an international recession, international crisis. Well, it is true that we are all sailing together into the squalls. But not every vessel in the convoy is in the same dilapidated condition. Other ships used the good years to caulk their hulls and clear their rigging; in other words – to pay off debt. But you used the good years to raise borrowing yet further. As a consequence, under your captaincy, our hull is pressed deep into the water line under the accumulated weight of your debt We are now running a deficit that touches 10% of GDP, an almost unbelievable figure. More than Pakistan, more than Hungary; countries where the IMF have already been called in. Now, it’s not that you’re not apologizing; like everyone else I have long accepted that you’re pathologically incapable of accepting responsibility for these things. It’s that you’re carrying on, willfully worsening our situation, wantonly spending what little we have left. Last year - in the last twelve months – a hundred thousand private sector jobs have been lost and yet you created thirty thousand public sector jobs.

Prime Minister, you cannot carry on for ever squeezing the productive bit of the economy in order to fund an unprecedented engorgement of the unproductive bit. You cannot spend your way out of recession or borrow your way out of debt. And when you repeat, in that wooden and perfunctory way, that our situation is better than others, that we’re ‘well-placed to weather the storm’, I have to tell you that you sound like a Brezhnev-era apparatchik giving the party line. You know, and we know, and you know that we know that it’s nonsense! Everyone knows that Britain is worse off than any other country as we go into these hard times. The IMF has said so; the European Commission has said so; the markets have said so – which is why our currency has devalued by thirty percent. And soon the voters too will get their chance to say so. They can see what the markets have already seen: that you are the devalued Prime Minister of a devalued government."

No comments: