Tuesday, March 09, 2010


And this is from an essay on economic policy in Counterpunch by Marshall Auerback and Rob Parentaeu:
...As the voices of fiscal retrenchment intensify, a future (for the US) not unlike Latvia, Greece and Argentina could await. It has taken the people of Iceland to make the first stand against this growing neo-liberal madness. In a historic referendum, over 90 per cent of the population has rejected a proposal for the repayment of billions of pounds lent by Britain and Holland to compensate depositors in a failed Icelandic bank.

The deal would have saddled citizens of Iceland with an additional $16k in debt to compensate the UK and Holland with a $5.3 billion note for the failure of their local banks. This, in a country of a mere 300,000 citizens. The vote failure has already prompted the ratings agencies to downgrade the country to junk, as well as leaving an IMF-led loan in limbo. The “experts” are declaring this a disaster for Iceland, but they and their banking allies must secretly be dreading the result, demonstrating as it does that an international bailout watchdog is truly powerless when the people of the bailout recipient nation want to have nothing to do with a poisoned chalice of an economic “rescue”, which does nothing but create a country of indentured serfs.

It is now time for the rest of us to follow the Lilliputians of Iceland: to take the rentier juggernaut down before it completes the task. Time to pry the vampire squid off our faces so we can see the light of day again and allow some semblance of humanity to flourish again. Hopefully, Iceland represents the future, not Latvia.

The Icelanders knew what they were doing. I read one young woman who said, "We may have to become a cold Cuba, with lots of old cars, only ours will be Range Rovers."

... A poor and isolated country with powerful enemies, that struggles by on its own.

I had a sudden fantasy of spending summers in Iceland and winters in Cuba, two tough little island nations. It might make an interesting retirement. The medical care would be good.


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