Monday, 24 November 2008

Blog : 24th November

L’Union en 2025 : un « géant boiteux » dans un monde incertain. Jean Quatremer, Les Coulisses de Bruxelles (fr)
" ... Ce nouveau rapport insiste sur le déclin du monde unipolaire, dominé par les États-Unis, qui a succédé au monde bipolaire à la suite de l’effondrement du communisme en 1989. Désormais, la planète sera multipolaire et la puissance américaine sérieusement concurrencée par de nouveaux acteurs, en particulier la Chine et l’Inde et, dans une moindre mesure, la Russie et le Brésil. À l’horizon 2040-2050, selon le CNI, le PNB de ces quatre pays sera équivalent à celui des membres du G7… Le problème est que les ressources sont limitées : selon le rapport, il y aura donc très probablement des conflits entre ces différents blocs afin de contrôler les matières premières (eau, nourriture, etc.).
Un tableau particulièrement pessimiste qui donne tout son relief à la page consacrée à l’Union : alors que le monde devient de plus en plus dangereux et incertain, alors que le partage des richesses va se faire à notre détriment, l’Union, elle, continue à s’empailler sur le sexe des anges… L’histoire ne repasse pas les plats, le CNI nous le rappelle ..."

Europeana se plante magistralement… Jean Quatremer, Les Coulisses de Bruxelles (fr)
" ... N.B.: en fait, les dix millions de "hits" dissimulent, selon la Commission, 4000 visiteurs simultanés!!! On rêve. ..."

IMF to Italy: Carry on Restructuring. P O Neill, A Fistful of Euros (en)
" ... Nonetheless, the Fund wants to be clear that while the G20 summit might have sounded like a call for many countries to engage in fiscal stimulus, Italy shouldn’t think of itself as one of those countries. It doesn’t have the room and should concentrate instead on getting the budget under control. Indeed, the Fund’s emphasis on expenditure cuts for Italy makes it sound like the kind of medicine that David Cameron will be prescribing for the UK when the Pre-Budget Report comes out next week — but he is not going to get the gift of an IMF report saying that the UK should join Italy as a country needing to get its fiscal house in order ..."

Are Baltic Devaluations Now In The Works? Edward Hugh, A Fisful of Euros (en)
" ... Now this is a very interesting question, isn’t it? The only honest answer I can give is that I don’t know, and indeed I haven’t the faintest idea. The government of Latvia (the Baltic state which is currently most rife with “rumours” about imminent devaluations) works in its own wondrous ways, and neither we (nor Latvia’s citizens) have any idea at all how they plan to lift their country out of the deepest depression they have experienced in many a long year...."

Back in The Saddle (with some random observations). Alpha Sources.CV (en)
" ... As in the US we are far from an actual state of deflation, but given my argument as I laid it out (see link above) the negative momentum we are observing suggests that what comes next on the macroeconomic front may be quite "unexpected" as those ever incoming stream of Bloomberg headlines are so fond of noting. If we look at the evolution of data the interpretation is quite clear. As can be seen from the graphs below, the decrease in inflation is currently being produced solely as a function of declining headline inflation (this is the same picture as the one emanating from the US and Japan). ..."

PCA? The EU needs a real Russia debate. Katinka Barysch Centre for European Reform (en)
" ... The signal the EU has sent now is that it is prepared to accept new realities in the Caucasus and return to business as usual. In fact, the EU did so long before the November 14th summit. After a lull in September, EU-Russia co-operation restarted in October, with several EU-Russia ministerial councils (on energy, foreign affairs and justice and home affairs) and various technical working groups getting together that month. It makes little sense for the EU to continue co-operation at all levels, from expert meetings to summits, while keeping the PCA talks on hold. So unfreezing the talks was consistent, if not exactly brave ..."

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