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Thread: Austerity pushing Europe into social and economic decline, says Red Cross

  1. #1

    Austerity pushing Europe into social and economic decline, says Red Cross

    Critique of response to EU debt crisis highlights unemployment, widening poverty gap, and growing risk of social unrest.
    Europe is sinking into a protracted period of deepening poverty, mass unemployment, social exclusion, greater inequality, and collective despair as a result of austerity policies adopted in response to the debt and currency crisis of the past four years, according to an extensive study being published on Thursday.
    "Whilst other continents successfully reduce poverty, Europe adds to it," says the 68-page report from the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies. "The long-term consequences of this crisis have yet to surface. The problems caused will be felt for decades even if the economy turns for the better in the near future … We wonder if we as a continent really understand what has hit us."
    The damning critique, obtained exclusively by the Guardian, of the policy response to the debt crisis that surfaced in Greece in late 2009 and raised fundamental questions about the viability of the euro single currency, foresees extremely gloomy prospects for tens of millions of Europeans.
    Mass unemployment – especially among the young, 120 million Europeans living in or at risk of poverty – increased waves of illegal immigration clashing with rising xenophobia in the host countries, growing risks of social unrest and political instability estimated to be two to three times higher than most other parts of the world, greater levels of insecurity among the traditional middle classes – all combine to make a European future more uncertain than at any time in the postwar era.
    "As the economic crisis has planted its roots, millions of Europeans live with insecurity, uncertain about what the future holds. This is one of the worst psychological states of mind for human beings. We see quiet desperation spreading among Europeans, resulting in depression, resignation and loss of hope. Compared to 2009, millions more find themselves queuing for food, unable to buy medicine nor access healthcare. Millions are without a job and many of those who still have work face difficulties to sustain their families due to insufficient wages and skyrocketing prices.
    "Many from the middle class have spiralled down to poverty. The amount of people depending on Red Cross food distributions in 22 of the surveyed countries has increased by 75% between 2009 and 2012. More people are getting poor, the poor are getting poorer."
    The survey conducted in the first half of this year "mapped" the 28 countries of the EU plus a further 14 in the Balkans, eastern Europe and central Asia.
    In the EU, it found that the grave impact of the crisis was not confined to the crisis-ravaged, bailed-out countries of southern Europe and Ireland, but extended to relative European success stories such as Germany and parts of Scandinavia.
    Last year the Spanish Red Cross launched a national appeal to help people in Spain, the first ever. Suicides among women in Greece have at least doubled. Many employed in Slovenia have not been paid for months. In France 350,000 people fell below the poverty line from 2008 to 2011. One in five Finns born in 1987 have been treated for psychiatric or mental disorders, associated with the economic slump in Finland in the 1990s.
    Despite Germany's vaunted success in avoiding the high levels of unemployment prevalent across much of the EU, a quarter of the country's employed are classified as low-wage earners, almost half of new job contracts since 2008 have been low-paid, flexible, part-time so-called mini-jobs with little security and usually no social benefits. In July last year 600,000 employed in Germany with social insurance did not have enough to live on.
    The problems are also affecting Europe's wealthiest societies, such as Denmark and Luxembourg, the study found.
    In the Baltic states and Hungary up to 13% of the populations have left in recent years due to economic hardship. The study reports a mounting trend of intra-European migration, mainly from east to west, in search of work.
    The jobs crisis is one of the most debilitating issues facing the EU and the eurozone. Of more than 26 million unemployed in the EU, those out of work for longer than a year stands at 11 million, almost double the level of five years ago when the international financial crisis broke out in the US.
    The social impact is immense, the study found. In Greece and Spain adult children with families are moving back in with their parents, several generations are living in single households with one breadwinner between them. It is now a common sight to find formerly prosperous middle-class men and women sleeping rough in Milan, Italy's financial capital.
    Youth unemployment figures in a quarter of the countries surveyed ranged from 33% to more than 60%. But as destructive to families, the report said, is the soaring jobless levels among 50-64 year-olds which has risen from 2.8 million to 4.6 million in the EU between 2008 and 2012.
    "The rate at which unemployment figures have risen in the past 24 months alone is an indication that the crisis is deepening, with severe personal costs as a consequence, and possible unrest and extremism as a risk. Combined with increasing living costs, this is a dangerous combination," the study said.
    Despite the perceived success of Germany, Europe's economic engine, the study takes the EU's biggest country to illustrate the widening wealth gap, raising questions about the longevity of the EU's traditional model, the social market economy. According to Germany's Bertelsmann Foundation some 5.5 million Germans have lost their middle-class social status over the past decade and fallen into the ranks of low-income earners while at the same time half a million others made the grade as high-income earners.
    Austerity pushing Europe into social and economic decline, says Red Cross | World news | The Guardian

    Sound familiar?
    Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities.

    Voltaire


  2. #2
    Now the EU is looking for a scapegoat for their failure....By the way in France they are massively close corporations, we should thank our socialist president for that.


    Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities.

    Voltaire


  3. #3
    Euro-court outlaws criticism of EU


    THE European Court of Justice ruled yesterday that the European Union can lawfully suppress political criticism of its institutions and of leading figures, sweeping aside English Common Law and 50 years of European precedents on civil liberties.
    The EU's top court found that the European Commission was entitled to sack Bernard Connolly, a British economist dismissed in 1995 for writing a critique of European monetary integration entitled The Rotten Heart of Europe.

    The ruling stated that the commission could restrict dissent in order to "protect the rights of others" and punish individuals who "damaged the institution's image and reputation". The case has wider implications for free speech that could extend to EU citizens who do not work for the Brussels bureaucracy.

    The court called the Connolly book "aggressive, derogatory and insulting", taking particular umbrage at the author's suggestion that Economic and Monetary Union was a threat to democracy, freedom and "ultimately peace".

    However, it dropped an argument put forward three months ago by the advocate-general, Damaso Ruiz-Jarabo Colomer, which implied that Mr Connolly's criticism of the EU was akin to extreme blasphemy, and therefore not protected speech.
    Euro-court outlaws criticism of EU - Telegraph

    These people have lost their minds...They are not better than the venerable leader of North Korea!
    Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities.

    Voltaire


  4. #4
    So much for freedom of speech. . . .
    "Democracy is two wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for lunch. Liberty is a well-armed lamb contesting the vote." -- Benjamin Franklin


  5. #5
    All-Time High Unemployment: The Economic Depression In Europe Just Keeps Getting Deeper

    The unemployment rate in the eurozone is higher than it has ever been before. This week we learned that eurozone unemployment came in at an all-time high of 12.2 percent for September. Back in January 2012, it was sitting at just 10.4 percent. So anyone that believes that "things are getting better" in Europe is just being delusional. In fact, the economic depression in Europe just keeps getting deeper. The funny thing is that the mainstream media will barely call what is going on in Europe a "recession" even though the unemployment rates in both Spain and Greece are now much higher than anything that the United States ever experienced during the "Great Depression" of the 1930s. There haven't been as many headlines about the financial crisis in Europe lately because the ECB has been papering over the debt problems of the periphery (at least for the moment), but the economic conditions on the ground for average Europeans just continue to get even worse. Later on in this article, you will read about a 25-year-old Spanish man with three college degrees that moved to London in a desperate search for a job who is now cleaning up poop for a living. The economic collapse of Europe continues to march on, and there is no end in sight. All you have to do is look at the latest unemployment numbers to realize that things are getting worse in Europe.
    In Italy, the unemployment rate is up to 12.5 percent.
    In January 2012, less than two years ago, it was sitting at just 8.9 percent.
    In Greece, the unemployment rate is up to an astounding 27.6 percent.
    In January 2012, it was sitting at just 21.4 percent.
    In Spain, the unemployment rate is up to 26.6 percent.
    In January 2012, it was sitting at just 22.8 percent, and all the way back in January 2008 it was just 8.6 percent.
    The youth unemployment statistics in the eurozone are even more horrifying...
    Unemployment among the under-25s rose by 22,000 in September to 3,548,000 – nudging up youth jobless rate to 24.1%. In France, the youth jobless rate jumped from 25.6% to 26.1%, while in Italy it increased from 40.2% to 40.4%.
    But as bad as those numbers are, they are nothing compared to what is going on in Spain and Greece. In Spain, the youth unemployment rate is up to 56.5 percent, and in Greece the youth unemployment rate is up to 57.3 percent.
    And of course unemployment is not the only problem that the European economy is dealing with right now. The following are some more facts about the European economy that show that the economic depression in Europe just keeps getting deeper...
    All-Time High Unemployment: The Economic Depression In Europe Just Keeps Getting Deeper

    It is obvious that the actual European Union system is a fiasco and I don't know why they persist to think that it is a good idea!

    The European Union system is unequivocally in a pre-revolutionary stage if they keep taking the same direction.



    Just to remind how Nigel Farage was right on.

    Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities.

    Voltaire


  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by Franc Tireur View Post
    Now the EU is looking for a scapegoat for their failure....By the way in France they are massively close corporations, we should thank our socialist president for that.
    That cannot be good for the French economy. But you can thank the Socialists view of business for that.

    Same problem here in the USA. Obama's czars and regulators have churned out over 120,000 pages of new business regulations that never went past the Congress or Senate for approval. He gave his czars regulatory powers. Czars are not supposed to be regulators; they are advisers. The primary qualifications for being an Obama czar are 1) never owning a business, and 2) being an avowed Marxists.
    "Democracy is two wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for lunch. Liberty is a well-armed lamb contesting the vote." -- Benjamin Franklin


  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by TopDogger View Post
    That cannot be good for the French economy. But you can thank the Socialists view of business for that.

    Same problem here in the USA. Obama's czars and regulators have churned out over 120,000 pages of new business regulations that never went past the Congress or Senate for approval. He gave his czars regulatory powers. Czars are not supposed to be regulators; they are advisers. The primary qualifications for being an Obama czar are 1) never owning a business, and 2) being an avowed Marxists.
    The problem with Communism, Socialism, Fascism, and National Socialism is that all of these systems kill creativity, entrepreneurial, modernism and prosperity. I don't even talk about freedom and liberties. I believe that the United States of America have the best foundation and the potential for the best society in the world, unfortunately there are many things that disrupt this achievement.
    Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities.

    Voltaire


  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by Franc Tireur View Post
    The problem with Communism, Socialism, Fascism, and National Socialism is that all of these systems kill creativity, entrepreneurial, modernism and prosperity. I don't even talk about freedom and liberties. I believe that the United States of America have the best foundation and the potential for the best society in the world, unfortunately there are many things that disrupt this achievement.
    The largest deterrent that we have is the lack of honesty and ethics with our politicians. Politics does not always attract the best people, but rather those that are popular, mostly because they tell people what they want to hear.
    "Democracy is two wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for lunch. Liberty is a well-armed lamb contesting the vote." -- Benjamin Franklin


  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by TopDogger View Post
    The largest deterrent that we have is the lack of honesty and ethics with our politicians. Politics does not always attract the best people, but rather those that are popular, mostly because they tell people what they want to hear.
    Until the special interests are the top priority, people are going to be put aside. The root of the problem is a total laissez faire from the rubber stamp politicians against the economic predators. For example take the undefined identity of the multi national corporations, their legal status allow them to play in any field around the world without accountability, the international central banking systems horror show, the trade agreements that aren't enforced and abused, etc

    So much for a few powerful sociopaths and psychopaths and barely nothing for the rest of people.
    Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities.

    Voltaire


  10. #10
    This is what happening when people are fed up by taxes:

    The protesters from Brittany said in the manifestation: "Holande demission"

    Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities.

    Voltaire


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