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Europe Is Turning Against Free Trade
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New European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen wants a “carbon tariff” on imports to Europe.

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After decades of piously reciting neoliberal orthodoxy, extolling a ‘post-political’ borderless world, the European Union seems finally to be turning away from free trade. Numerous factors are working in this direction: a decades-late reaction to China’s mercantilist trade policies which have gutted European industry, the threat of trade wars with America under President Donald Trump, the withdrawal of free-trading Britain from the EU, the rise of Big Tech everywhere but Europe, and ordinary Europeans’ angry reaction to policies which have destroyed their jobs only to enrich footloose capitalists and tax havens.

I have been struck by a rather marked changed of tone among eurocrats in recent months, both among the incoming administration of future Commission President Ursula von der Leyen and the éminences grises of EU think-thanks. Von der Leyen herself has said she will “introduce a Carbon Border Tax” in order “to ensure our companies can compete on a level playing field.” This would presumably be a tariff according to amount of carbon that went into producing a product, hitting China and other industrial exporters most. A carbon tariff has been a long-time ask for protectionist-leaning French politicians.

Von der Leyen, a conservative German politician, has rather implausibly promised a “Green New Deal” for Europe. As such we can expect any-and-all government initiatives these days to be justified by some vague reference to the environment, under the sign of Saint Greta. (Seriously, why has Greta not been awarded a Nobel Peace Prize yet? Why has that doddering old Pope Francis not canonized her? Surely the dying and two confirmed miracles requirements are mere formalities at this point.) It is almost as if human rights’ claim of a sacrosanct private sphere of individual choice fails to recognize the basic interdependence of all things. Ho hum.

The influential think-tank Bruegel – which is run by former top European officials – has been moving away from the EU’s traditional neoliberal trade policies and laissez-faire attitude. Bruegel published a recent paper making “the case for industrial policy”:

The Chinese authorities . . . have cleverly used state subsidies to promote AI and support domestic firms. To help counter this challenge, Germany and Europe should respond with their own subsidies to knowledge-based sectors. Europe’s automotive industry is an obvious candidate for such support. This is why Altmaier’s plan to develop European battery production for electric cars make sense, and may even accelerate an industrial renaissance across the continent.

Whatever one thinks of such arguments, it certainly marks a significant shift in EU thinking.

There has also been talk of restoring Europe’s “economic sovereignty,” which has never really recovered since the Second World War. Since then, Europe has been dependent on Mideastern oil, U.S. economic aid, military support, and tech companies, and Chinese industrial prowess. European companies have been increasingly vulnerable to being bought up by foreign capital.

In France, there has been a longstanding critique of the EU’s economic policies and a demand to implement a protectionnisme européen (“European protectionism”), most notably voiced by the euroskeptic demographer Emmanuel Todd. This was long a pious wish, but with Britain on the way out and Germany itself churning out its own industrial policy, it looks like things may be changing. Not only France, but also much of southern and eastern Europe, are basically protectionist in outlook, leaving the free-trading Dutch and Nords rather isolated.

It’s easy to mock the EU as fake and gay – rightly so in certain areas, such as foreign policy – and prone to perpetual gridlock. But if there’s one area where the EU has real power, it’s on economic matters: namely market regulation, trade, and antitrust.

EU Commissioner for Competition Margrethe Vestager has been making a name for herself in recent years by inflicting billions of euros in fines on American tech giants, mostly for unpaid taxes. Hervé Juvin – a prominent environmentalist intellectual who has been elected to the European Parliament as a candidate of Marine Le Pen’s National Rally – recently asked Vestager:

Madam Vestager, complements on your past actions . . . You express with great conviction your faith in the [EU] single market. I however observe that Europe is not in the lead concerning IT and AI. I also observe that in economic history never has a country caught up in a given sector except by protecting it behind demanding tariff and non-tariff barriers. My question is then: How can you help Europe catch up in the IT and artificial intelligence fields without abandoning the dogma of freed trade . . . without building up an effective external border for the single market, as our Chinese and Russian rivals have been able to do?

Certainly, the EU easily has the capacity – that is to say the human capital – to produce indigenous tech giants, as China and Russia do. The trend so far has been for American companies to hoover up any promising European start-ups or for them to become marginal over time, as their dominance of any given national market proves to be totally insufficient to rival a company dominant in the far larger U.S. market.

In addition to these factors, one can also sense demand among the metropolitan classes for a more powerful EU as America and Britain have moved to their own more-or-less vapid brands of nativist populism. As Gideon Rachman of the Financial Times recently argued in an article tellingly entitled “The EU needs to be a power project”: “The EU once dreamt that the whole world would move towards a law-based system, similar to the EU method. But a world order, shaped by Xi Jinping’s China and Trump’s America, will be based on power rather than rules.”

All roads lead to Carl Schmitt, it seems.

Whether the metropolitan classes – at once privileged and ineffectual, contemptuous of the very nations and states through which mass action is actually possible and power actually exercised – can actualize their dreams for the EU is another question.

Open borders, in the absence of a cross-border regulator, of course means a kind of lawlessness. But, as it turns out, opening up borders is a lot easier than instituting some kind of common “governance” across borders. Hence, if Europeans wish to preserve their way of life and govern their own space, they will have to reinstate an effective external border, the crossing of which occurs only occurring to the will and interests of the European peoples.

I would love Europe to be a well-regulated, sovereign, and European space. Self-sufficient, open to fruitful economic and cultural exchanges of the world, but maintaining its identity and character in perpetuity. I can imagine Europe as a beautiful garden. Is that too much to ask?

Only with these:

May you keep these:

 
• Category: Economics, Foreign Policy • Tags: EU, Free Trade 
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  1. Anonymous[189] • Disclaimer says:

    I find it quite something that the author managed to write an article on the EU and free trade and this time and not even mention Brexit. In fact, I rarely ever see Brexit mentioned on this site. Who ever selects the articles for this site seems to have an aversion to British politics. I’ve seen SERBIA and the Balkans mentioned more often than Britain on here.

  2. The EU has long had an industrial policy, and it is called the euro. This shared currency, however, has only had the effect of propping up German exports by making them cheaper than they would have been if priced in marks. And unfortunately, it has seriously disadvantaged certain other industrial countries such as France and Italy, while transforming the ‘peripheral’ states of Europe (Greece, Spain, et al.) into virtual debt-colonies.

    So the real question here is: Are the Eurocrats finally ready to implement an industrial policy that benefits all Europeans? Personally, I remain skeptical.

    • Agree: A123
    • Replies: @UncommonGround
    , @A123
  3. “Von der Leyen herself has said she will “introduce a Carbon Border Tax” in order “to ensure our companies can compete on a level playing field.” This would presumably be a tariff according to amount of carbon that went into producing a product, hitting China and other industrial exporters most.”

    Au contraire, mon ami! China has the same Carbon Border Tax legislation in draft at present and planned it in conjunction with the EU. Between them, they will do much to bring the world into line.

    • Troll: MikeatMikedotMike
    • Replies: @Wally
  4. @Anonymous

    Patrick Cockburn covers Brexit constantly, albeit from a Remoaner perspective.

  5. “I also observe that in economic history never has a country caught up in a given sector except by protecting it behind demanding tariff and non-tariff barriers.”

    Marine Le Pen’s new friend here may wish to bone up on American history before making such bone-headed pronouncements. It was, after all, the protectionism of the 19th century that enabled America to overtake Britain in the early 20th century. Figures as diverse as Henry Clay and Abraham Lincoln all supported putting tariffs on foreign imports as part of a larger industrial policy. (Admittedly, there’s more to economic development that just tariffs; but the latter are still a necessary condition for the former.)

  6. onebornfree says: • Website

    “Free trade” simply means : the ability of sovereign individuals and businesses to buy/sell goods, services to anyone they choose to, anywhere in the world, at any price they mutually decide on,without outside interference from others [ including governments].

    Classical economist David Ricardo’s Law of Comparative Advantage (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Comparative_advantage ] neatly explained exactly how/why free trade amongst individuals is to the economic benefit of everyone, and why government policies restricting or even eliminating free trade between individuals in other parts of the world via tarrifs, trade barriers, taxes etc. must always result in higher prices for consumer goods and [consequently] a lower standard of living for the general population of any particular country whose government limits free trade between individuals /businesses anywhere else in the world that they might otherwise do business with.

    [Yes, Ricardo was a mercantilist unfortunately, but at least he got one thing right- free trade between individuals is a necessary component of a healthy economy with a rising standard of living for all classes.]

    All governments oppose free trade- although some still pay [very] vague lip service to the idea, and right now, to the world populations detriment , the “iron laws” of comparative advantage are taboo, which means: free trade between individuals is now increasingly restricted, and everyone [except the elites] is going to “enjoy” an even lower standard of living than that which they presently “enjoy”.

    As Forest Gump observed: “Stupid is a stupid does”.

    But no matter, sooner or later the”iron law”of comparative advantage will have its revenge and almost everyone will suffer, as they well deserve to.

    And so it goes

    “Regards” onebornfree

    • LOL: Alden
  7. @Digital Samizdat

    That’s what he’s saying: you need some protectionism for early industrial development, though the sentence is a bit awkward.

    • Replies: @Digital Samizdat
  8. @Digital Samizdat

    the euro. This shared currency, however, has only had the effect of propping up German exports by making them cheaper than they would have been if priced in marks. And unfortunately, it has seriously disadvantaged certain other industrial countries such as France and Italy, while transforming the ‘peripheral’ states of Europe (Greece, Spain, et al.) into virtual debt-colonies.

    Germany exported sucessfully also before the Euro existed. The Euro exists since a short time ago. It was Mitterand who demanded from Kohl that Germany accepts a common currency as a condition to accept the reunification of Germany. It makes little sense to have a common economic market with 20 different currencies.

    Greece only got the euro because they lied about the state of their economy. For that they had the assistance of an American financial firm. When they where hit by an economic crisis, they spoked about leaving the euro. They could have done that and many people in Germany were hopeful that they would drop the euro. But the fact is that nobody in Greece wanted to leave the euro.

    Germany has been the largest donor nation in the EU. France profits from that, specially its agriculture. A large part of subsidies in the EU go to the agrarian sector and France profits from that a lot. Germany would prefer to reduce this subsidy.

  9. A123 says:
    @Digital Samizdat

    The EU has long had an industrial policy, and it is called the euro. This shared currency, however, has only had the effect of propping up German exports by making them cheaper than they would have been if priced in marks.

    You are precisely correct.

    And, Germany destroyed the gains they could have made by supporting failed “green” power concepts such as wind and solar. They now have some of the highest cost electricity in the world, which impacts their global competitiveness. The anti-science, Carbon Border Tax is Germany’s way of dragging other EU states down with them.

    Here is a question, “If Germany is so committed to green power, why doesn’t it cancel Nordstream 2?” They shouldn’t need to import nasty, CO2 emitting, hydrocarbon fuel from Russia.

    PEACE

  10. @A123

    Here is a question, “If Germany is so committed to green power, why doesn’t it cancel Nordstream 2?” They shouldn’t need to import nasty, CO2 emitting, hydrocarbon fuel from Russia.

    Here is the answer. Germany is not so commited to green power. That’s the reason why they want and need to import gas from Russia like many other European countries. The US is against this import because they want to sell their own gas from fracking which is more expensive. The environmental costs of that are much worse than gas from Russia. There is a lobby which doesn’t want that Germany imports gas from Russia and the US has made a lot of pressure against Germany because of that. Maybe The Country also wants to export in the future gas from territories which they occupay, I don’t know.

    • Replies: @A123
    , @216
    , @Michael888
  11. A123 says:
    @UncommonGround

    That’s the reason why they want and need to import gas from Russia like many other European countries. The US is against this import because they want to sell their own gas from fracking which is more expensive.

    If Germany was using LNG shipping, distance means that it would still be cheaper to buy Russian vs. U.S. So, blocking Nordstream 2 doesn’t benefit the U.S. gas export industry.

    There is a more obvious reason. Poland stood up against Mullah Merkel’s German Caliphate and her replacement of Christians with imported Muslims. IslamoGlobalism is now trying to inflict punishment. Mullah Merkel desperately wants to bypass the existing Polish gas transport infrastructure that generates fees for Christians.

    PEACE 😇

  12. Von der Leyen, a conservative German politician

    Calling von der Leyen “conservative” is totally meaningless, like most of the CDU her policy stances are indistinguishable from progressivism (e.g. she’s spoken out in favour of quotas for women in politics, also initiated a major witch hunt in the Bundeswehr over residual ties to the Wehrmacht during her time as minister of defence, while the Bundeswehr is decaying ever more as an actual military force…priorities). She also has a proven record of incompetence and cronyism. I think the prospects of people like her turning the EU into a force that matters on the international stage are pretty remote, it’s more likely they’ll just continue their wrecking job.

    • Agree: Guillaume Durocher
  13. 216 says: • Website
    @UncommonGround

    The average German voter has ratified their green insanity, unless they make an abrupt U-turn and return to nuclear power, they might be headed for recession.

    • Replies: @The Alarmist
  14. @German_reader

    She also has a proven record of incompetence and cronyism

    She is a gynecologist by education. She still remains a butt of the jokes in Russia. Latest Report (a month ago) by Karaganov’s group (group is a collection of different specialists in economy, geopolitics etc.) underscores a dramatic decrease in intellect, competence and increase in infantile, due to the death of a meritocratic process in the West. So, this pretty much covers most of EU and US elite.

    • Replies: @Anonymous
  15. @onebornfree

    Quote some dead dude you don’t understand out of context and think you’re smart. You must be a sophomore. C-.

    “There is no free market. It is all crooked.”
    Someone Much Maturer Than You.

  16. Wonderful that they are even lip-servicing dumping that everybody-always-knew-it-was-a-vile-lie-for-children “free market” crap. The world is run like a cheesy confidence racket and they act, with straight faces, as if it works like a chess game.

  17. @A123

    They may have “some of the” highest cost electricity. Whatever that means.

    But they have the warmest houses, so it evens out. Dummesel.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Passive_house

    You people are kinda stupid.

    • Replies: @Wally
    , @The Alarmist
  18. @A123

    Dumbass. The Carbon Border Tax is not the same as carbon taxes. It is protectionism, dumbass. Read up. I know it’s hard. But sound out the words.

    • Troll: A123
    • Replies: @A123
  19. A123 says:
    @obwandiyag

    Obi,

    Congratulations on being an ineffective, braid dead, gibbering Troll.

    Pease continue. We find you amusing.

    PEACE 😇

    • Replies: @Digital Samizdat
  20. Wally says:
    @obwandiyag

    Not nearly as stupid as your beloved low IQ, sh-thole ‘Africans’.

  21. Franz says:
    @onebornfree

    Classical economist David Ricardo’s Law of Comparative Advantage …

    … is unintelligible without the full context, which Ricardo provided.

    In his argument of “comparative advantage” he noted the “prejudice” most investors have to invest in their own nation. Ricardo then notes he agrees with the prejudice and would not alter it.

    This totally changes the modern glib interpretation Comparative Advantage. If a country don’t give a crap about its workers or environment, it can pump out tons of cheap goods. Nations with work codes and environmental protection laws, and also buy from them, will be subsidizing them.

    In fact, American investors totally subsidized China when it cut two generations of industrial workers off at the knees and sent the work out. China did not pay for an old Kaiser steel mill in California to be chopped up neatly and sent like a jumbo DIY kit across the Pacific. Americans did.

    —-

    Post Scriptum — Despite Ricardo being part correct, I would avoid thinking of economic “laws” as any way comparable to real laws. We are not talking about the speed of light here.

  22. @216

    … they might be headed for recession.

    They’re already there. Thanks to the Greens and their willing accomplices in the CDU and SPD, the Morgenthau Plan might be realised after all.

  23. @obwandiyag

    But they have the warmest houses, so it evens out. Dummesel.

    Have you actually lived in Germany? They rarely put the heat up in order to save money (gas and electric are expensive), and the passive house simply helps them save even more by losing less of the little warmth they allow themselves.

  24. @A123

    He’s like a Tiny Duck who can spell.

  25. @Guillaume Durocher

    You’re right. My error. Somehow I missed the word “except”.

  26. @UncommonGround

    Germany exported sucessfully also before the Euro existed.

    Yes, but that was before China–with its low labor-cost advantage–was a ‘thing’.

    It was Mitterand who demanded from Kohl that Germany accepts a common currency as a condition to accept the reunification of Germany.

    That wouldn’t surprise me. But be aware that post-de-Gaulle France was no more sovereign than post-war Germany, both being NATO protectorates. And the euro certainly hasn’t done France any favors.

    It makes little sense to have a common economic market with 20 different currencies.

    Possibly. But it’s also true that having a common market without a shared budget makes little sense either. Read up on what happened to America’s Articles of Confederation.

    • Replies: @atlantis_dweller
  27. @A123

    German ‘environmentalism’ is so idiotic. I remember several years ago after Fukushima, when all these little Bundes-hippies were running around with their ‘Atomkraft – nein, danke!’ signs. Initially, I would try to explain to them that shutting down their nuke plants would be a bad idea until they came up with something better to replace them. ‘No problem!’ they would insist. ‘Why, we’ll just throw up some more solar panels.’ I would try to explain to them, ‘This is Germany. There’s no sunlight here.’ But that never seemed to phase them at all. Eventually, I just gave up.

    Now here we are, seven or eight years later, and guess what: it’s time for Nordstream 2!

    • Replies: @A123
    , @UncommonGround
    , @Antares
  28. Renoman says:

    One day soon you’re gonna realize
    That the leaders of the Country are telling you lies
    That they sold it all and they sold it cheap
    And they put it in their pockets cause you were weak
    And they’re getting away ya they’re gonna get away
    And they really don’t give a damn what you say

    • Replies: @atlantis_dweller
  29. “Free trade” etc, apart from being almost meaningless, is a mere tactic of (usually, non-existent) “industrial Policy”.
    Coordinated policy, clear goals & fiscal support are the bedrock of many Asian counties economies. If the EU wants a 21st C it also needs coordinated policy. (“Airbus”, is at least an example of such a policy)
    If it wants that policy to actually succeed, they should also (as a first step) do away with austerity. A policy not for the benefit of the EU or it’s States, but for its bankers & bond holders (neither of whom give a toss, beyond projected profits) for any nation or Union.

  30. A123 says:
    @Digital Samizdat

    Even more German entertainment:

    — The wildlife Traditional Greens are beating the New Greens senseless (1).

    The most important cause lies in the legal resistance of wildlife and forest conservationists fighting new wind farms. The BWE President referred to an industry survey of the onshore wind agency. According to its findings, more than 70 percent of the legal objections are based on species conservation, especially the threat to endangered bird species and bats.

    in 2021 thousands of wind turbines come to the end of the 20-year subsidy period of the Renewable Energy Act, more wind turbines will be demolished on balance than new ones will be added

    ____

    — The New Greens are beating natural gas senseless.

    There is a very real chance that Nordstream 2 will not come online any time soon because of the sheer number of bureaucratic roadblocks. (2)

    Greenpeace Germany which claimed that the environmental impact assessment on the construction of the pipeline was incomplete, pointing to pollution on the country’s Baltic coast caused by toxic grease after a construction incident.

    PEACE 😇
    _______

    (1) https://www.powerlineblog.com/archives/2019/08/wind-energy-collapsing-in-germany.php

    (2) https://emerging-europe.com/news/pressure-builds-over-environmental-impact-of-nord-stream-2/

  31. Whatever one thinks of such arguments, it certainly marks a significant shift in EU thinking.

    .

    The EU apparatus don’t “think”, they obey. So the question is, what’s been telegraphed to them from Washington and New York, with regard to trade issues (and, if of interest, why?)?

  32. @Renoman

    Oh, doubtless. But if you are lucky, soon or maybe later, you’re gonna realize the leaders lie better, not more, than the masses they lie to, and all is not only as it should be, but as it only can be.

    They wouldn’t be let lead if they lied any worse, or any less.

  33. @Digital Samizdat

    Why say “NATO”, where it is USA? I mean, if we are telling truth, what’s the point to telling it half-baked, or half-named?
    Western Europe has been occupied (again, “protectorate” seems to agree with the lie that it is only about “protection”) by the USA since WWII.

    After acknowledging it as it is, an analysis whether this be more good or bad for Western Europe in the past decades, and whether this will be more good or bad for Western Europe in the coming decades, becomes possible.

    Of course a truly, united Europe could change the course of this occupation. But a truly united Europe doesn’t exist, and isn’t going to: it’s in no-one’s interests, certainly not in the interest of the obedient EU high-profile bureaucrats, to promote one. Therefore, nothing will bother the occupation.

  34. @A123

    Poland stood up against Mullah Merkel’s German Caliphate and her replacement of Christians with imported Muslims. IslamoGlobalism is now trying to inflict punishment. Mullah Merkel desperately wants to bypass the existing Polish gas transport infrastructure that generates fees for Christians.

    The only problem with your explanation is that the idea for the pipe line is from 1995. I’m not sure that Mullah Merkel had been already born at that time. According to wikipedia the plans and start for the project begun before MullaMerkel was Kanzler of Germany.

    • Replies: @A123
    , @Skeptikal
  35. @Digital Samizdat

    I remember several years ago after Fukushima, when all these little Bundes-hippies were running around with their ‘Atomkraft – nein, danke!’ ……. Now here we are, seven or eight years later, and guess what: it’s time for Nordstream 2!

    The idea for Nordstream is from 1995, the plans and the start of the project preceded Fukushima by many years. Renewable energy plays a considerable role in the suppy of energy in Germany. Today In Germany no other source produces more energy than renewable energy.

  36. Wally says:
    @Godfree Roberts

    Classic leftist lying.

    Labeling CO2, a trace gas loved by plants, as “carbon” C, a solid, is part of the deception pulled on the naive. The gullible then assume that they’re saving the world from chunks of carbon flying around.

    The Carbon Dioxide Word Game
    https://principia-scientific.org/the-carbon-dioxide-word-game/

    Most Massive Scientific Fraud In Human History
    https://principia-scientific.org/most-massive-scientific-fraud-in-human-history/

    • Replies: @Alden
  37. A123 says:
    @UncommonGround

    The only problem with your explanation is that the idea for the pipe line is from 1995.

    Nord Stream #1 was planned in the 90’s and went live 2011-2012.

    I believe the planning for Nord Stream #2 did not begin until #1 was proven technically successful, which would imply 2012-2013 as a major funding, project initiation event.

    If you have good source material it would be appreciated. Much of what I can find inadequately distinguishes #1 versus #2. There may be earlier, Russian language, proposals committing Gazprom to the #2 line that I cannot readily locate.

    PEACE 😇

    • Replies: @UncommonGround
  38. TGD says:
    @onebornfree

    Classical economist David Ricardo’s Law of Comparative Advantage (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Comparative_advantage ] neatly explained exactly how/why free trade amongst individuals is to the economic benefit of everyone, and why government policies restricting or even eliminating free trade between individuals in other parts of the world via tarrifs, trade barriers, taxes etc. must always result in higher prices for consumer goods and [consequently] a lower standard of living for the general population of any particular country whose government limits free trade between individuals /businesses anywhere else in the world that they might otherwise do business with.

    I keep trying to explain to the “free market- free trade freaks” that the early advocates of free trade, Adam Smith, David Hume and Ricardo, assumed that the exchange of gold to settle trade account deficits would keep trade relatively in balance. See David Hume’s “price specie flow mechanism.”

    The replacement of hard money with fiat money has been the enabler of massive trade imbalances and the consequent rise of “adversarial” trading nations like Japan, China and South Korea.

  39. @A123

    You are right. Articles don’t distinguish very well 1 from 2. There is an article in German in wikipedia, Nord Stream. The article says that the president of the Russian company at that time, Rem Wjachirew, said in 2000 that he would see a pipeline that doesn’t go through the Ucraine still during his life time. In 2004 an agreement with German firms was signed, one year later than foreseen. In 2005 Schröder and Putin formalised the contract. They also say that the EU had already in 2000 seen the project favourably:

    https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nord_Stream#Nord_Stream_2

    • Replies: @A123
  40. A123 says:
    @UncommonGround

    said in 2000 that he would see a pipeline that doesn’t go through the Ukraine still during his life time. In 2004 an agreement with German firms was signed, one year later than foreseen. In 2005 Schröder and Putin formalised the contract. They also say that the EU had already in 2000 seen the project favourably

    Nordsream #1 would be:
    — 1990’s — planned
    — 2000’s — signed / construction start
    — 201o’s — construction complete / commercial use begins

    So, one would presume the quote is about #1 not #2.

    PEACE 😇

  41. ‘Carbon (dioxide) taxes are completely CRIMINAL and immoral. Taxing the ‘gas of life’ is criminal. It wont ‘save the planet’ There is NO human caused climate change. CO2 does NOTHING to the weather or long term climate. Provable with real physics and geophysical data.
    Please stop taxing the gas of life! Eliminating it is physically absurd!!!! AND impossible, zero emissions are IMPOSSIBLE! 98% of CO2 is in the oceans! the levels of which are controlled by laws of nature not humans.
    Economic criminals are driving this greatest science/geopolitical FRAUD. Stop stealing our MONEY!

    • Agree: Fox
  42. So, one would presume the quote is about #1 not #2.

    I don’t think that this is right. The reason is that the information about the project is about the project which was decided by Gehard Schröder when he was Kanzler. And this is Nord Stream 2 and not 1. You can google his name and nord stream 2 and you’ll se the results. The article also doesn’t mention any other posterior agreement. There is only one which was signed by Putin and Schröder – at least I never heard about another agreement. Merkel has always had difficulties with the Russians, she never had really good relations with them. In spite of that she supports now the project. The reason for that is that it’s a private project that had been supported by a German government and that economically it is favourable to Germany – it’s almost ready anyway. It’s more ecological than fracking gas from the US and it’s cheaper. The fact that the pipe lines are under the sea diminishes the power of intermediaries like Poland and the Ucraine. So Germany cannot be pressured by them.

  43. Archangel says:

    Everything “green” that the EU did turned out to be a scam. Money for special interests using artificial markets at the expense of the population. It started with the bio-ethanol/bio-diesel handout to the agro-industry, followed by the wind and solar energy which made the fortune of a number of intermediaries and utilities, and the carbon trading scheme which was revealed to be a vehicle for VAT fraud of about 10 billion euros. Hence I believe that the carbon border tax will be another scam. The sheer legal complexity of its setup implies massive opportunities for “tax optimisation” i.e. pay nothing and even outright fraud, which will be very hard to prove if caught.

    As far as industrial policy is concerned, the EU has consistently protected the automotive and aerospace industries ,and left the others fend for themselves. Thus most of the semiconductor, electronics, telecommunications industries died without the commission even bothering to do a post-mortem analysis to avoid similar catastrophes in the future. The new commission will do nothing; except introducing more regulatory burdens as part of its ongoing routine.

    The EU is a true curse on the continent.

  44. ivan says:
    @onebornfree

    Please note that
    a) The England that had supposedly had the comparative advantage in cotton went on to become a mighty industrial power based on steam power running her mills, and the simultaneous destruction of the superior Indian cotton trade which England had nickled-and-dimed to her advantage. Whereas the Portugal in Ricardo’s argument remained a backward nation specialising in the hoary old trade in port wine.

    and
    b) The Portuguese were hardly in a position to engage in a drawing room discussion with Ricardo on the merits of free trade, since they were forced as part of the price that England extracted for supporting her during the Peninsula War, to open up Brazil for the English free-traders.

    Had the French followed the free-trade nostrums, they would hardly have the Airbus or the Ariane Space industries, whereas our British friends lost their independence in aircrafts and a budding space program to satisfy the free-trade dogmas.

  45. @A123

    Taxation has gone a long way to improving life quality for the 85% on all those issues. What a bizzare cartoon.

  46. @A123

    Interesting. Merkle is satanic enough to view her world as one that needs an internal war against the ghosts of her ancesters, and what better way to do it than flood her nation with sub-Saharans and ME Muslims. She is obviously corrupt ideologically, and morally. Personally I believe the Jews are behind the immigration problem and she is their tool. Since WW1 Germany has been under attack, whether from external military forces, economic wars, and/or internal traitors.

  47. @German_reader

    Calling von der Leyen “conservative” is totally meaningless, like most of the CDU her policy stances are indistinguishable from progressivism (e.g. she’s spoken out in favour of quotas for women in politics, also initiated a major witch hunt in the Bundeswehr over residual ties to the Wehrmacht during her time as minister of defence, while the Bundeswehr is decaying ever more as an actual military force…priorities). She also has a proven record of incompetence and cronyism.

    Au contraire, cher German_Reader. This is the textbook definition of “Conservative”.

  48. IC says:
    @A123

    It’s true that Germany has screwed itself over with their ridiculous push into solar and wind power and are now at a cost disadvantage along with paradoxically increasing their CO2 because they’ve had to build new coal powered plants to offset the intermittent nature of renewables. Hundreds of thousands of Germans have had their power shut off because they can’t afford the high prices. It’s a massive scam on the populace. The New Green Scam has been going on in Southern Australia as well with blackouts. One mine was shut down for two weeks due to one. One govt official’s response to a mine owner was that they should build their own power plant. That’s Third World behavior.

    I don’t see how the EU can realistically demand a Carbon Border Tax when they are sabotaging their own industries with suicidal policies. It’s their fault for not providing an even playing field. And they have no business coercing other countries to toe the line on the Climate Change scam. It’s bad enough that they’ve unfairly had and still have tariffs against American imports for decades even after they recovered from WWII. This Carbon Border Tax is simply another tariff and I suspect it’s because they need more money for their migrant parasites, their faltering welfare state, and their slowing economy.

  49. O. R. says:

    To help counter this challenge, Germany and Europe should respond with their own subsidies to knowledge-based sectors. Europe’s automotive industry is an obvious candidate for such support. This is why Altmaier’s plan to develop European battery production for electric cars make sense, and may even accelerate an industrial renaissance across the continent.

    I think this proposition makes senses. Developing knowledge-based sectors, eg the electrical industry, would be great. This would help Europe meet her energy needs with new electrical power generation centers, and get rid of her dependency on Russia for natural gas through Ukraine.

    My problem with the EU is the FTA it signs with Latin America, and the rules of origins. If for example i take the document below on the rules of origin for EU-Mercosur, i find the text is sometimes vague, complicated, confusing, and largely interpretable.

    Observers say ‘there are concerns about the ease with which goods processed partly or fully in a third country can receive duty-free access under a bilateral agreement by being re-exported with just enough processing to satisfy rules of origin requirements:

    EU-Mercosur FTA texts (Uruguay, Jul 2019)

    EUROPEAN UNION-MERCOSUR
    PROTOCOL1 ON RULES OF ORIGIN

    https://www.gub.uy/ministerio-relaciones-exteriores/sites/ministerio-relaciones-exteriores/files/inline-files/02%201%20%20Protocolo%20sobre%20reglas%20de%20origen%20%20%20Protocol%20on%20rules%20of%20origin.pdf

  50. Anonymous[155] • Disclaimer says:
    @Anonymous

    Your comment might be self explanatory. Due to (great) Britain having given up their homegrown industry over the last decades and the circus that their internal politics have turned into they are in the process of making themselves obsolete in the european experiment. Hopefully Scotland will be able to regain their independance from the English colonizers and join the European Union and Ireland can prevent another period of pointless violence to see England turn into a second rate European country. How much can change in a hundred years where sun could not set over the British Empire to the sun setting on the (great) britain

  51. Smith says:

    Good!

    Free trade means selling your industry somewhere else (China!!!), and that means China is richer while you get poorer.

    A strong nation needs to have a strong domestic industry.

  52. Isabella says:
    @Anonymous

    Agree with you. In fact, the Brexit move is more important than almost anything else in Europe and the Balkans right now. If UK does manage to leave, taking her 1 billion Euros a day with her, she will be able to start to rebuilt run down infra’s like the Health service and increase policing in the now Wild West streets of London. But more,,, other nations will be encouraged to leave the floundering dying EU. All it takes is for the UK to get it’s brains together long enough to start to trade with Russia, and UK will take off again. EU will be dead in the water within a couple of years. Especially with Macron “I’m really born again Napoleon” running the show. Then, with a bit of luck America will lose NATO, it’s European military arm against Russia, and we will really be off and running.

    • Replies: @Herald
  53. Biff says:

    Taxing the ‘gas of life’ is criminal.

    A real idealist aren’t you.

    “We tax everything that moves, and everything that doesn’t”
    Hillary Clinton

  54. Lot says:

    China has played the USA and Western Europe off each other for 30 years to facilitate tech theft and destroying our industries.

    Now the USA has stepped up and imposed serious tariffs on them. Time to show some solidarity, Europe, and do the same.

    Call it a carbon tariff if you like.

    • Replies: @Amon
  55. Antares says:
    @UncommonGround

    Germany has been the largest donor nation in the EU. France profits from that, specially its agriculture. A large part of subsidies in the EU go to the agrarian sector and France profits from that a lot. Germany would prefer to reduce this subsidy.

    Germany provides its costumers with money, otherwise it couldn ‘t sell to those countries. The banks have most of all protected their own loans. That’s the reason why Greece was not allowed to default and escape from the Euro.

    For that they had the assistance of an American financial firm.

    Goldman Sachs.

  56. Antares says:
    @Digital Samizdat

    German ‘environmentalism’ is so idiotic. I remember several years ago after Fukushima, when all these little Bundes-hippies were running around with their ‘Atomkraft – nein, danke!’ signs. Initially, I would try to explain to them that shutting down their nuke plants would be a bad idea until they came up with something better to replace them. ‘No problem!’ they would insist. ‘Why, we’ll just throw up some more solar panels.’ I would try to explain to them, ‘This is Germany. There’s no sunlight here.’ But that never seemed to phase them at all. Eventually, I just gave up.

    There is no solution for radioactive waste. They have tried everything but it all failed completely. In Germany there was a location of which ‘the experts’ were 100% sure that it would be save for the next thousands of years. Thanks to its rare geological formation it was guaranteed to remain dry. And then they had to install pumps. And then the barrels that were stored inside turned out to have been literally dumped there, with dents and fissures in the hulls. One big mess and you would not want to go in there and clean it up.

    Not that the environmentalists are one bit wiser. The only thing that reduces output is reduced input. Everything else is a fairy tale. More investments only make it worse. We should not fool ourselves.

    Of course I didn’t mean the harmless carbon dioxide but real, nasty pollution!

    And spoken personally, why do we need all that garbage? Now our vegetables are wrapped up in plastic. That is the consequence of AI! I have worked in that industry! It is not for a better world at all, but: lower wages, lower required skills, higher profits and more control. AI does not only improve the control over a production process, but also over human beings. And it leads to ‘smarter’ weapons. That is also more control (over us).

    We should first understand where we want to go before we embark. But hey, that is a “should be!” Not gonna happen. So the real question is: “In what mess will we find ourselves some day?” and “Who rules?”

  57. An interesting personal footnote regarding Frau von der Leyen.

    From Wikipedia:


    Von der Leyen’s father’s grandparents were the cotton merchant Carl Albrecht (1875–1952) and Mary Ladson Robertson (1883–1960), an American who belonged to an elite planter family of the southern aristocracy from Charleston, South Carolina.

    Her American ancestors played a significant role in the British colonization of the Americas, and she descends from many of the first English settlers of Carolina, Virginia, Pennsylvania and Barbados, and from numerous colonial-era governors. Among her ancestors were Carolina governors John Yeamans, James Moore, Robert Gibbes, Thomas Smith and Joseph Blake, Pennsylvania deputy governor Samuel Carpenter, and the American revolutionary and lieutenant governor of South Carolina James Ladson

    During her student years in London, she went by the name Rose Ladson.

    She has seven children, unusual in this day for a working politician.

  58. gotmituns says:
    @UncommonGround

    Actually, the EU was Hitler’s idea.

    • Replies: @Anon
    , @Wally
  59. Herald says:
    @Anonymous

    Most thinking people have an aversion to British politics.

  60. Herald says:
    @Isabella

    I can’t envisage that a post Brexit UK, one of the loudest rabble-rousers in the anti-Russian brigade, will be doing much trade with Russia, or will be allowed to, for that matter.

    Almost certainly after Brexit the UK will sink even deeper into US clutches and will then be stripped of anything worthwhile, including the little bit of independence it gains through Brexit.

    More police on the streets will only be for protection of the ruling classes and will have very little to do with protecting the masses from crime. That’s not what the police in do in the UK.

    Lastly anyone who thinks Boris Johnson and his gang of opportunists are going to resurrect the NHS is going to be very sadly disappointed.

  61. Alfred says:
    @UncommonGround

    “It makes little sense to have a common economic market with 20 different currencies. “

    That is a red-herring. Lots of trade is done in US dollars by countries other than the USA. With the internet, it costs almost nothing to convert currencies or to have multiple currency bank accounts.

    The real problem with the Euro, as Martin Armstrong, keeps on repeating is that the government bond markets are not unified. You lend to the German government and the interest in a Euro loan is x%. You lend in the same currency to the Italian government and the interest rate is x+%

    That is a design problem and will inevitably trash the Euro in a year or so.

  62. onebornfree says: • Website

    ” The idea that political freedom can be preserved in the absence of economic freedom, and vice versa, is an illusion. Political freedom is the corollary of economic freedom………………If individuals are not free to buy and to sell on the market , they turn into virtual slaves dependent on the good graces of the omnipotent government, what ever the wording of the constitution may be.”

    Ludwig von Mises “The Anti-Capitalistic Mentality”: https://mises.org/files/anti-capitalistic-mentalitypdf-0

    “It is a delusion to believe that planning and free enterprise can be reconciled. No compromise is possible between the two methods. Where the various enterprises are free to decide what to produce and how, there is capitalism. Where, on the other hand, the government authorities do the directing, there is socialist planning.

    From: “Omnipotent Government- The Rise of the Total State and Total War”. by Ludwig Von Mises
    https://mises.org/library/omnipotent-government-rise-total-state-and-total-war

    Regards,onebornfree

    • Agree: Agent76
    • Replies: @obwandiyag
  63. Anonymous[406] • Disclaimer says:
    @Andrei Martyanov

    Unmerited privilege and advancement of women, queers, and minorities in the US and EU are relegating both unnoticed to the dust bin of history. For example, nineteen more qualified white male applicants to medical school are bypassed to fill female quotas, and the same misallocation of education resources would probably be doubly so in the hard sciences. On his retirement twenty years ago, a former professor at Annapolis said the blacks and Hispanics being admitted weren’t capable of complex conceptual thought and yet unmerited advancement would place them in the Navy’s most critical jobs. It goes on across all fields.

    A study done in England led a feminist psychologist showed that women are demonstrably less capable of flying complex jets than men and yet on the present trajectory we’d be lucky to see more than a few men in the cockpit. Graduates of medical schools in India are allowed to take the physician’s licensing exam in all 50 states despite half of many programs in India being spent in language and test prep, and where, according to an association of Indian med school professors, parents can buy their sons and daughters not only admission but also good grades.

    It also goes unnoticed that men have been so emasculated in the US and EU that they allow women on TV to author their worldview and opinion. The emasculo-feminist icing on the cake might be college educated white women giving the Dems’ homicidally ant-white coalition the edge in elections and so guaranteeing their own children will eventually be persecuted like criminals in their own country.

  64. Anon[424] • Disclaimer says:
    @gotmituns

    Fhürerin Merkel failed the IV Euroreich , like Fhürer Adolf the III Reich , at least in the IV Euroreich there has been shooting wars only in Yugoslavia , Ukraina and Georgia

    Those germans ……

    • Replies: @Wally
  65. onebornfree says: • Website

    Guillaume Durocher says: “Europe Is Turning Against Free Trade”

    This just in:

    Nothings changed, the nations of Europe have been opposed to free trade since at least the start of the 20th century.

    “Stupid is as stupid does” .

    And so it goes….

    “Regards” onebornfree

  66. Agent76 says:

    November 10, 2008 Corporations versus the Market; or, Whip Conflation Now by Roderick T. Long

    this month’s lead essay, philosopher and libertarian theorist Roderick T. Long draws a sharp contrast between corporatism and libertarianism properly understood.

    https://www.cato-unbound.org/2008/11/10/roderick-t-long/corporations-versus-market-or-whip-conflation-now

    Aug 30, 2011 CORPORATE FASCISM: The Destruction of America’s Middle Class

    A new kind of fascism has taken over America: the merger of corporations and government whereby corporate power dominates. With the emergence of ever-larger multinational corporations — due to consolidation facilitated by the Federal Reserve’s endless FIAT money — the corporatocracy has been in a position to literally purchase the U.S. Congress.

    May 7, 2012 TPP = Corporate Power Tool of the 1%

  67. Agent76 says:

    Feb 18, 2019 Amazon Paid $0 In Federal Income Taxes Last Year

    Despite doubling its profits, Amazon has paid zero dollars in federal taxes for the second successive year.

    https://www.forbes.com/sites/niallmccarthy/2019/02/18/amazon-paid-0-in-federal-income-taxes-last-year-infographic/

    Feb 14, 2014 Free Trade vs Fair Trade

    In this video, Peter Crawford talks about the difference between free and fair trade. After reviewing the pros and cons, Mr. Crawford addresses solutions for the American economy that would bring back jobs and prosperity.

    • Replies: @Antares
  68. What?
    I do not think so!

  69. Wally says:
    @gotmituns

    said:
    “Actually, the EU was Hitler’s idea.”

    Had they listened to him the Communists would not have taken much of Europe.

    • Replies: @onebornfree
  70. Wally says:
    @Anon

    Except NS Germany started no wars.

    The Soviet Union Conspired to Foment World War II and Infiltrate the U.S. Government,
    By John Wear https://codoh.com/library/document/6807/?lang=en
    exc:

    “If the Waffen-SS had not existed, Europe would have been overrun entirely by the Soviets by 1944. They would have reached Paris long before the Americans. Waffen-SS heroism stopped the Soviet juggernaut at Moscow, Cherkov, Cherkassy and Tarnopol. The Soviets lost more than 12 months. Without SS resistance the Soviets would have been in Normandy before Eisenhower. The people showed deep gratitude to the young men who sacrificed their lives.[15]”

    Why Germany Invaded Poland, by John Wear: http://inconvenienthistory.com/11/1/6391
    Roosevelt Helped Start World War II in Europe: http://www.unz.com/article/roosevelt-conspired-to-start-world-war-ii-in-europe/
    New Documents Show: Roosevelt colluded with Stalin: https://forum.codoh.com/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=11013&p=83910&hilit=Roosevelt+colluded+with+Stalin#p83910

    • Replies: @Anon
  71. onebornfree says: • Website
    @Wally

    Wally says: “Had they listened to him the Communists would not have taken much of Europe.”

    “…In truth, Hitler was involved in an extreme left-wing political movement and revolution, sporting a red armband while working on behalf of the Communist Party of Germany in Munich. In fact, on the second day after the Communists declared the Bavarian Soviet Republic on April 6, 1919, Hitler sought and won an elected position in the Communist government. Bluntly, Hitler participated in a Communist regime even during a period that resembled a Lenin-like reign of terror….”

    “Was Hitler a Red-Armband-Wearing Communist?”:
    https://www.lewrockwell.com/2019/09/lk-samuels/was-hitler-a-red-armband-wearing-communist/

    “…….Without a doubt, ideologically, economically, and politically, Karl Marx and Adolf Hitler were almost indistinguishable. Like father and son, they were two social justice warriors, determined to weaponize intolerance, socialism, racism, and nationalism for the greater good. In big ways, Marx and Hitler seamlessly fit a similar political profile as both fraternal comrades and combative siblings. They were two sides of the same coin…..” :

    “Was Adolf Hitler the Son of Karl Marx?”:
    https://www.lewrockwell.com/2019/10/lk-samuels/was-adolf-hitler-the-son-of-karl-marx/

    Regards, onebornfree

    • Agree: Agent76
    • Replies: @Eugene Norman
  72. Amon says:
    @Anonymous

    Brexit is a joke that’s overstayed its welcome.

    What is the use of leaving the EU when the destructive immigration policy is a product of the British government itself?

    What is the use of leaving the EU when the outcome is submissions to murican and jewish trade agreements that will plunder the British kingdom blind?

  73. onebornfree says: • Website

    Frightening how much the Euro-commie tart in the photo at top looks like the US commie tart “democratic socialist” Elizabeth Warren, otherwise known as “liar-watha”. And I’m sure they have much in common other than their looks.

    Regards, onebornfree

    • LOL: Agent76
  74. Agent76 says:

    Oct 26, 2019 The Biggest Sellouts to China

    American companies love to sellout to China. But some people stand up. On the first edition of Sellout or No Sellout, we take a look at League of Legends, NBA ,Blizzard, Tim Cook, Quentin Tarantino, Magic the Gathering, and Shaquille O’Neal. And the Hong Kong protests are at the core of pretty much all of it. Which ones sold out? And which ones didn’t?

  75. Antares says:
    @Agent76

    VAT has nothing to do with unfair trade: imported and domestic products are equally taxed.

  76. Skeptikal says:
    @Digital Samizdat

    “Marine Le Pen’s new friend here may wish to bone up on American history before making such bone-headed pronouncements. It was, after all, the protectionism of the 19th century that enabled America to overtake Britain in the early 20th century.”

    Uh, that is exactly what Marine Le Pen’s friend said.
    Read the quote again, er, Bonehead!

  77. @onebornfree

    Economic “freedom” just means the rich get to be perfectly free to fuck over the poor any old way they want to without let or hindrance.

    Anybody who uses the word “freedom” in relation to markets is a liar and a shill. Either that or an idiot.

    • Replies: @onebornfree
    , @Reg Cæsar
  78. Amon says:
    @A123

    Well, that’s how it was solved in my nation. Highest tax rate in the world = lowest poverty, homelessness, under educated,and debt ridden nation on earth with access to 23/7 health care that don’t require a bank loan or third mortgage to be paid off.

    But hey, you keep your free enterprise colleges with their pipeline to poverty through fraudulent bank loans, shitty college degrees in gender, women and native american rain dance classes, same goes for your “pay or die” health care system which also works hand in hand with banks to ensure you are fleeced of all of your funds through usury. Not to forget their depiction of curing you when they actually want you to remain sick for long as possible so they can keep charging you for useless treatments and medicines.

    You might also want to take a look at that poverty and homeless crisis since it seems to be rampant in places where the free market has driven housing prices up so high even the middle class can’t afford them, but oh, that is the free market price the 99 percent must put up with in a free market place right.

    Libertarians like you truly is the dumbest breed of humans.

    • Agree: annamaria
  79. Alden says:
    @Anonymous

    Maybe because Americans can do absolutely nothing to influence Brexit one way or another?

    Plus, it’s none of our business?

  80. Alden says:
    @onebornfree

    Also known as beggar thy neighbor.

    Exactly what China did to us with ultra cheap labor, primitive manufacturing no pollution controls, putting cheaper anti freeze ingredients into cough medicine partnering with Walmart and beggaring America.

    • Agree: Lot
  81. Amon says:
    @Lot

    The USA have played the European nations against each other for 80 years now. Endlessly meddling in elections to ensure the ever expanding globohomo agenda would triumph over sound logic.

    The means have been covertly funding domestic terrorists, bribing government officials and when that was not enough they organized soft coups and color revolutions. All of i to slowly but surely murder the European nations and their national cultures, languages and genetic codes in favor a submissive third world nation occupied by human trash willing to work as slaves for just one can of coca cola.

    All of this evil we are told, is not only to please the worshipers of Zion, but their own pagan beliefs in a mortal jewish god and the paradise promised to them for endless servitude to their devils that walk among us.

    Europe will not be free to seek it manifest destiny until America and its inbred barbaric subhumans are all dead and buried six feet under.

    • Replies: @TOITN
  82. renfro says:

    I would love Europe to be a well-regulated, sovereign, and European space. Self-sufficient, open to fruitful economic and cultural exchanges of the world, but maintaining its identity and character in perpetuity. I can imagine Europe as a beautiful garden. Is that too much to ask?

    Well that is the ideal for every country isn’t it?
    The question is how do we get to that?

    Its a over complicated subject. ..on purpose.Because there is no profit in leveling the universal playing field.
    You cant achieve that ideal as long as you have economic refugees gravitating to more wealthy countries and profit driven entities rearranging global production.

  83. Anon[424] • Disclaimer says:
    @Wally

    Good song of the Franco troops of the spanish civil war , eh ? Cara al sol . much bettter then Lili Marlen .

    • Replies: @Ilyana_Rozumova
  84. So what is really happening in Europe? The answer is quite simple and that being Europe is totally dominated by Germany and Germany is totally dominated by it’s green party : Die Grünen, period.

    Which means that Germany has morphed into a “Greta” nation which is gauged and judged by it’s “Gutmenschentum” , by the loyality of it’s neurotic citizenry to the concept of protecting the climate from the evil capitalists and therefore the drive to eliminate it’s most important industrial factor : the automobile industry. The greens are steadily and relentlessly pushing towards the elimination of privately-owned automobiles, and the reduction of German industry to a bare minimum.

    The German greens hate business and commerce with a violent passion and they, being totally crazy are not concerned with the outcome of their concepts, thusly with the introduction of their own “Morgantau” paln.

    Authenticjazzman “Mensa” qualified since 1973, airborne trained US army vet and pro jazz performer.

    PS DTS is more prevalent and rampant in Germany than anywhere else on planet mirth.

  85. Alden says:
    @Wally

    Thanks for the information.

  86. Skeptikal says:
    @UncommonGround

    “The only problem with your explanation is that the idea for the pipe line is from 1995. ”

    Nord Stream 2?
    I don’t think so.
    Nord Stream 1 was first discussed ca. 1995-97.
    Nord Stream 2 was proposed ca. 2011.

  87. HEREDOT says:

    Terrible days await Germany. the northern stream is unacceptable to the anglo zionist empire. Instability, confusion await isis germany. Deuthsche Bank’s 50 trillion dollar toxic derivative is a nightmare for Germany and Europe!

  88. in economic history never has a country caught up in a given sector except by protecting it behind demanding tariff and non-tariff barriers.

    Sometimes it occurs to me that it might be really good for all of us if the EU were to throw amazon, microsoft, apple, google, and facebook out.

    Impossible obviously but the Chinese seem to do OK without kissing FAGMA ass.

    • Replies: @Skeptikal
  89. onebornfree says: • Website
    @obwandiyag

    obwandiyag says: “Economic “freedom” just means the rich get to be perfectly free to fuck over the poor any old way they want to without let or hindrance. Anybody who uses the word “freedom” in relation to markets is a liar and a shill. Either that or an idiot.”

    Anyone who seriously believes that their government gives a shit about the poor is either a full on retard, under 14 years of age [too young to know any better] or a some low level, delusional, thieving bureaucrat/government employee of some description or other.

    “If one understands that Socialism is not a ‘share the wealth’ program but is in reality a method to consolidate and control the wealth, then the seeming paradox of super rich men promoting Socialism becomes no paradox at all. Instead it becomes logical, even the perfect tool of power-seeking megalomaniacs. Communism, or more accurately Socialism, is not a movement of the down-trodden masses but of the economic elite.” From: “None Dare Call It Conspiracy” -Gary Allen

    “Regards” onebornfree

  90. Skeptikal says:
    @Morton's toes

    China has its own FAGMA, just different names.
    Controlled by Beijing.
    See article in the current London Review of Books by John Lanchester:
    https://www.lrb.co.uk/v41/n19/john-lanchester/document-number-nine

    Currently not behind a pay wall.

  91. TOITN says:
    @Amon

    It’s funny how Uncle Sam is the one who starts all the wars yet it’s the EU that gets the Lions share of all the refugees fleeing the wars and conflicts and what have you.

    I’ve always admired the ‘European way’ but I dont know why they choose this path to remain ally’s with the USA. Now the EU is is slowly but surely stratifying because of the EU’s undying allegiance to the USA.
    It’s make or break time for the EU but yeah I share your sentiments those people are some accursed wretched folk, the majority anyway save but a handful.

  92. HEREDOT says:
    @Anonymous

    Britain is the most despicable country that is the chief architect of these problems we face today. What are you opposing? The crushing, annihilation of England is the salvation of humanity. British nauseating

    • Agree: Ilyana_Rozumova
  93. @A123

    This isn’t just a European problem, its a problem for most western countries. Policies pushed by the Greens and their neoliberal allies have made most western countries much less competitive in economic competition with Asia and Latin America. And that’s the idea, they want to further de-industrialise the West, so they can have more green playgrounds and make short-term to medium term money out of offshoring productive activity.

    Besides all the green red tape, targeted tariffs on imported goods have been replaced with hefty indirect taxes or just about everything. For example, most western countries have hefty taxes on diesel, petrol, electricity and natural gas and this leaves their farmers and manufacturers at a major disadvantage in competition with developing countries.

  94. @Anon

    Lili Marlen should be a song of US troops . Particularly those in Afghanistan,
    Interestingly enough Hitler (the idiot ) did love the song, Goebbels hated it.
    Story goes that composer and lyrics writer were Jews.
    But than I do not think that it really influenced the moral of German soldier.
    Song came out after Kurks battle when German army was already in panic retreat anyway.
    The way things are developing for US army in Middle East the song will be revived with English lyrics.

  95. @Digital Samizdat

    Figures as diverse as Henry Clay and Abraham Lincoln all supported putting tariffs on foreign imports as part of a larger industrial policy.

    Southerners had– and still have– some rather choice words about those men and those taxes.

    Admittedly, there’s more to economic development that just tariffs; but the latter are still a necessary condition for the former.

    Wouldn’t embargoes work better? The U.S. once had a pretty stiff one against China for years.

    In the 1970s there was a big argument in the US over whether to get our chrome from Rhodesia or the Soviet Union. One or the other was hated by everybody, and there were no other sources.

    No one dared suggest blocking chrome imports from both countries, and coming up with a domestic chrome substitute, or simply recycling all that chrome wasted on vehicle ornamentation over the years.

    • Replies: @Ilyana_Rozumova
  96. @Reg Cæsar

    There is no substitute for chrome. That is a fact, No chrome no stainless steel.

    • Replies: @Reg Cæsar
  97. the far larger U.S. market.

    The reason for “the far larger U.S. market” is the constitutional strictures on states applying tariffs and embargoes against one another. The EU was a mad attempt to imitate this. Is the EU ready to drop this internal free trade, and allow Luxembourg to levy tariffs on rum from French Guiana and Bourbon vanilla from Réunion?

    The difficulty with tariffs is that some bureaucrat or congress has to be authorized to set a figure. 10%? 110%? 1010%?

    An embargo is much simpler. All it requires are customs agents and a coast guard, who are already on the job.

  98. sally says:
    @onebornfree

    Free trade eliminates competition, allows corporations and other groups to organize their criminal activities and to accumulate such wealth and power that they can control the law making and war making apparatus of the states that host them, as a result; anything of value eventually gets sucked up into the bosom, ownership and placed under the control of a very few.. Copyrights, patents, private property ownership, privatized assets and government contracts all represent closed door feudal elements that impose on the masses in societies monopoly powers; these monopoly powers are owned by the few. Corporate Feudal Societies is the result of globalization, often the corporations are larger than the nation states that host them.

    In such societies, the few compete with each other to make the group of the few smaller, and smaller and smaller while the starving to death masses grow and grow and grow. Everyone not in the group of the few, everyone without valuable patents, copyrights, substantial income producing real estate properties, government contracts, and state backed franchises (electric companies) become the slaves that are forced to starve in the streets unless individually they are lucky enough to have earned an education of the right kind, at the right time, that makes them useful to one of the feudal lords.

    Its the nation state system.. because that system is much like the EU, it just that the EU is a smaller version of the great big world wide scam that separates humanity into information controlled, rule restricted, propaganda opposed and polarized human containers, called nation states. We need the entire world to compete, not over who is allowed to live or die, but over how we will use our skills to contribute and to make each a part of a better global society. The nation state system or the smaller version of it, the EU, are in-the-way of human progress.

    The Bexit is the best thing since sliced bread.. the exit may cause a few nasty years, but in the end it will free the British people to one again compete in the real world.
    The problem is not free trade, the problem is the nation states that say they enable it.. what they really do is is enable it for a few, and disable it for the balance.

  99. @Ilyana_Rozumova

    There is no substitute for chrome. That is a fact, No chrome no stainless steel.

    Excuses, excuses.

  100. @obwandiyag

    Economic “freedom” just means the rich get to be perfectly free to fuck over the poor any old way they want to without let or hindrance.

    Like hiring immigrants.

  101. Antares says:
    @TOITN

    I’ve always admired the ‘European way’ but I dont know why they choose this path to remain ally’s with the USA.

    We never chose. If they don’t like our politicians they will be shot. It is that simple. Most of the time they don’t need this kind of measures. There are many ways to blackmail a country.

    In my country it can happen that a military man (I never look at ranks) tells us, after the choice for the F-35 was made, that you will see that an American hoola-boola has spoken with him for 30 minutes. Imagine a teenage girl who was allowed to speak with her idol. For 30 minutes!

    The real question is of course: who put that idiot at that position?

  102. Antares says:

    Actually I believe it were 45 minutes, but you get the idea.

  103. @UncommonGround

    Natural gas (methane) is bubbling up all over the arctic and need only be harvested to provide long-term, inexpensive solution to energy needs for neighboring countries. It is much better to use this abundant natural gas rather than frack or drill deep wells, but of course will cut into the profits.

    • Replies: @annamaria
  104. Amon says:
    @TOITN

    I’ve always admired the ‘European way’ but I dont know why they choose this path to remain ally’s with the USA.

    We didn’t chose, it was chosen for us. Post WWII the winners carved up Europe like a pizza that damned hundreds of millions to suffer under either Juden Bolshevik terror regimes or in the case of western European nations, neo liberal economic policies implemented by US/UK dominance that destroyed the nations of Europe’s ability to build strong independent economies.

    Part of the plan for this was the infiltration and destruction of nationalists or right leaning parties across Europe by the combined forces of the CIA and MI organisations through the use of controlled left wing organisations like Antifa or right wing terror cells set up by NATO.

    Economically, the nations were held hostage by the world bank and US banking cartel after the US decided to steal all of Europe’s gold to prevent any of them from leaving the US dominated international trade system post WWII. Even to this day no nation in Europe can access their gold and all attempts to reclaim it is met with harsh condemnation from the US as it would mean an end to the US fiat dollar system.

    Europe will only be free once America leaves.

  105. @TOITN

    You know it’s funny, but in Germany, you can almost track the problem foreigners in Germany by the last 40 years of so of American/Israeli policy. You just need to know nationality, age, and time and country, and you have a good idea of what was going on if you know you’re recent Mideast history.

    Cheap German bars in the poorer places can be real eye-openers.

  106. annamaria says:
    @Michael888

    “Natural gas (methane) is bubbling up all over the arctic and need only be harvested to provide a long-term, inexpensive solution to energy needs…”
    — Agree.

  107. @onebornfree

    Hitler never joined the communists.

    As for free trade. The US became the biggest power on earth behind a protectionist wall in the 19C. It is falling apart because of free trade, following the trajectory of the British – once the workshop of the world now begging for Japanese investment to stay post Brexit, so they can still say they produce cars. The Asians are growing like gang busters (China) or maintaining their industrial base (the rest) while protecting their industry, subsidising industrial champions, or – in the case of China – government ownership of much of bigger capitalised firms. An inconvenient truth for the readers of lew Rockwell, Mises or even the economist. Your ideology is a busted flush but you will happily die in the post apocalyptic rust belt of hyper capitalist America than face the truth, because you are born free. Free of decent wages, free of healthcare, free of decent roads or high speed trains, free of non-crumbling infrastructure. But free.

    (Well except for a legal system that jails more people per capita than all dictatorships).

    • Agree: utu
    • Replies: @Miro23
  108. Miro23 says:
    @Eugene Norman

    As for free trade. The US became the biggest power on earth behind a protectionist wall in the 19C. It is falling apart because of free trade, following the trajectory of the British – once the workshop of the world now begging for Japanese investment to stay post Brexit, so they can still say they produce cars.

    When you’re the world’s leading industrial power such as Great Britain in 1850 or the United States in 1950, free trade makes a lot of sense. In simple terms , it opens up other people’s markets and allows your manufacturers to knock out theirs.

    However if you’re not the world’s leading industrial power, free trade is a threat to your industrial base and protectionism is the answer.

    So, when Great Britain started to lose out to more efficient German and US manufacturers by the 1880’s they should have shut down free trade – same as the US should have done by 1980 when it was clear that they were losing out to Asian manufacturers.

    The fatal mistake, especially made by the US, was to give in to US corporations (the neoliberal framework) who wanted to continue capturing the massive profits of manufacturing in Asia and selling in the US. They were allowed to export the US manufacturing base (and the associated jobs) in the biggest ever sellout of the US people.

    Private corporate interest vs. the public interest.

    • Replies: @utu
  109. utu says:
    @Miro23

    The fatal mistake, especially made by the US, was to give in to US corporations (the neoliberal framework) who wanted to continue capturing the massive profits of manufacturing in Asia and selling in the US.

    It is difficult to believe that this was just a mistake, shortsightedness, inability to predict the long term consequences. The same Wall Street built up Soviet industries in 1920s and 1930s and it does not seem that they were expecting to get massive profits from selling Soviet manufacturing goods in the US. So, why did they do it? Why did they decide to build up China sometimes in 1970-1980s by transfer of technology, investments and opening market for them?

    • Replies: @Miro23
  110. Miro23 says:
    @utu

    The fatal mistake, especially made by the US, was to give in to US corporations (the neoliberal framework) who wanted to continue capturing the massive profits of manufacturing in Asia and selling in the US.

    It is difficult to believe that this was just a mistake, shortsightedness, inability to predict the long term consequences.

    It’s a mistake from the POV of the US public, but since when have they mattered? IMO the US has always had too much involvement of business in politics. It’s a long tradition, but at least, in the past, corrupt politicians shuffled the money around within the United States. With the internet, digitalization and global supply chains these same corrupt politicians could cooperate in sending US money (and manufacturing) off to China (never to return).

    I don’t think that they’re trying to build up Russia or China. They’re just in it for personal gain “Greed is Good”.

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