It is unclear what benefit EU derives from British membership. But British expulsion from EU will surely simplify EU politics & debates
- Italy’s Monti rebuffs Britain’s EU budget drive – Reuters UK (uk.reuters.com)
- EU bids to keep Britain engaged in budget debate – Reuters UK (uk.reuters.com)
- Merkel warns Britain against European Union exit (telegraph.co.uk)
- Now even the EU wants us to leave (express.co.uk)
- 10 key questions for Britain and Europe at the Brussels summit (guardian.co.uk)
- 56% of Britons would vote to quit EU in referendum, poll finds (guardian.co.uk)
- If Britain leaves Europe, we will become a renegade without economic power | Observer editorial (guardian.co.uk)
- ‘Opportunist’ China’s Help Rejected By EU (quicktake.wordpress.com)
- Newswallah: Long Reads Edition (india.blogs.nytimes.com)
- It’s not just our leaders who are in a crisis. Democracy itself is failing | Peter Beaumont (guardian.co.uk)
- Conspiracies, Coups and Currencies (nytimes.com)
- The eurozone crisis is eroding our democracy. How do we withdraw our consent from being governed like this? (blogs.telegraph.co.uk)
Socrates, the greatest of all oral communicators, was freaking out over “the very latest communications technology, written language based on an alphabet” though as Powers concedes, “writing wasn’t completely new”. Socrates believed that scrolls would erode thought by permitting people to forget what they had learned because they’d be able to look things up, that “they wouldn’t feel the need to ‘remember it from the inside, completely on their own.’ ” Worse, writing wouldn’t “allow ideas to flow freely and change in real time, the way they do in the mind during oral exchange.” (via Born to Check Mail By LAURIE WINER, Published: July 9, 2010, Book Review – Hamlet’s Blackberry – By William Powers – NYTimes.com).
Indian yogis in Athens
Socrates was a great believer in oral teaching. The shruti tradition in India was alive before Socrates was born. Was that a coincidence? After all, Valmiki committed to palm leaves pre-existing history. Similarly, Krishna Dwaipayan Vyasa wrote the pre-existing history of Mahabharata!
Mentioned by Aristoxenus and recalled by Eusebius, Socrates’ encounter with an Indian yogi however, is not well-known. Mentions of the Athenian encounter between the Indian yogi and Socrates are a rarity in modern history. Socrates was accused of
disrespect for the gods whom the state recognizes, of introducing new divinities and of corrupting the young
Socrates was condemned to death by poison. Compare this to Indian ethics which forbid violence against the intellectual class – the Indian brahmins, priests, and rishis.
What were the alien gods that Socrates was promoting? What was it that Socrates was teaching that ‘corrupted the Greek youth’. The alien gods and teachings that Socrates was accused of promoting – were these from India?
Why would the ancient Greeks be anti-Indian?
Pliny’s ‘moralizing verdict on the Roman trade with India,’ borders on being an anti-India polemic. Pliny’s India writing’s remain a significant academic memory even today.
Why the anti-Indian polemic?
Indic ideas that threatened the world
Indian teachers and intellectuals were sent to all corners of the world. The spread of Buddhism in Asia is well-chronicled. In 2nd century AD, Origen, a Christian pioneer, attributed the spread of Christianity “The island (Britain) has long been predisposed to it (Christianity) through the doctrines of the Druids and Buddhists, who had already inculcated the doctrine of the unity of the Godhead”
Mani, the Buddhist teacher, and his adherents, known to Christians as Manicheans were the nightmare for Christianity till the 15th century, feared by the Vatican for a 1200 years. Vatican killed, burnt and quartered all those who displayed any leaning towards Manichean-ism.
St.Augustine was canonised for his conversion from Manichean to Christianity. When Mani called for overthrow of slavery, the Vatican at the Council of Gangra, re-affirmed its faith in slavery. Islamic invaders searched and destroyed statues or boet /buta (meaning statues of Buddha?).
The reason behind this ‘persecution’?
Indian economic system in 500 BC ensured property rights for all – something that Europe could achieve only in the 19th century. Property, wealth and power concentrations in Greece would be threatened by Indic thought.
Travelling salesmen stop travelling
From 5th century we increasingly see more stories of visits to India. Visits by Indian rishis begin to dry up. The last Indo-Buddhist seems to be Mani.
1000 years after Mani’s death, the Vatican was afraid of his his ‘hold’ over the European populations.
Leaders of the 16-nation euro region endorsed a Franco- German proposal for a mix of IMF and bilateral loans at market interest rates, while voicing confidence that Greece won’t need outside help to cut Europe’s biggest budget deficit.“It’s an extremely clear political message,” European Union President Herman Van Rompuy told reporters after the leaders met in Brussels late yesterday. “It’s a mixed mechanism but with Europe playing the dominant role. It will be triggered as a last resort.”
After objecting to a possible IMF intrusion on the $12 trillion euro-region economy, the ECB endorsed the package, with President Jean-Claude Trichet saying that European governments will remain in control of the process.Trichet, who told France’s Public Senat television earlier that surrendering control to the IMF would be “very, very bad,” held his own press conference after the summit to revise the comments. (via EU Steers Greece to IMF, Pledges Loans in Last-Resort Update1 – BusinessWeek).
On January 9, Standard & Poor’s announced that Greece, Spain and Ireland were on review for a possible downgrade, indicating that a Euro-zone country could default. The Greek situation acquired some urgency, as redemptions are due soon. Greece cannot be left to fend for itself, without reducing the credibility of the EU among its own member states – and may turn out to be the acid test for the EU and the Euro. But EU-Zone economy is contracting now for the last 18 months.
Britain and Sweden are suggesting that IMF is better suited to handle the Greek situation – rather than the ECB. Germany and France, being the economic and political leaders of the Euro-pride brigade, are worried about IMF entry into Europe.
The gross debt (government, private, corporate) of the Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Portugal, Spain, UK, US are all above 200% – going upto more than 1000% in case of Ireland.
- More on the Recovery (fool.com)
- CREDIT SUISSE: These Are The 25 Riskiest Countries In The World (businessinsider.com)
- DealBook: U.S. Banks Tally Their Exposure to Europe’s Debt Maelstrom (dealbook.nytimes.com)
- Greek debt crisis eases, but drama is not over (seattletimes.nwsource.com)
- Rex Nutting: Investors demanding larger government deficits (marketwatch.com)
- Are We Still in The Great Recession? (neatorama.com)
Can EU ignore Greece …
European Investment Bank President Philippe Maystadt said the bank can’t rescue member states struggling with budget deficits.
“The EIB’s mission and statute do not allow for bailouts in terms of budget deficits or balance-of-payments support to individual member states,” he said in a statement posted on the Luxembourg-based lender’s Web site today. (via EIB Says It Can’t Rescue States With Deficits (Update1) – BusinessWeek).
The problem with EU
Greece may turn out to be the acid test for the EU and the Euro. Britain and Sweden are suggesting that IMF is better suited to handle the Greek situation – rather than the ECB. Germany and France, being the economic and political leaders of the Euro-pride brigade, are worried about IMF entry into Europe.
The crisis has exposed the EU’s Achilles’ heel — states remain independent to spend as they wish, but their decisions can affect all 16 eurozone nations. Countries that help Greece risk having their own borrowing costs rise as a result, and could see other struggling eurozone economies get in line for aid. (from Star Tribune)
Divide et impera
Vietnam suffered from a prolonged war (1956-1976) – and finally peace had a chance after 20 years of war. Korea remains divided. The Cyprus problem between Turkey, Greece and the Cypriots has been simmering for nearly 100 years.
The role of the Anglo Saxon Bloc, in Indonesia, the overthrow of Sukarno, installation of Suharto and finally the secession of East Timor is another excellent example. The Israeli-Palestinian conflict (1935 onwards) will soon enter its 75th year. The entire Arab-Israeli-Palestinian conflict is a creation of the Anglo-French-American axis. The many other issues in the West Asia and Africa are living testimony of the Western gift to the modern world.
The track record
Closer home is the Kashmir problem. After 60 years of negotiations, India-Pakistan relations have remained hostage to the Kashmir issue. Similarly, between China and India, the border issues remain 60 years after the eviction of Britain from India.
The Anglo-Saxon habit of partitioning countries is a disaster!
- Cyprus between Greece and Turkey
- Israel between Palestine, Jordan and Syria
- Chinese Singapore in Malaysia
- Northern Ireland out of Ireland
- Two Koreas
- Taiwan and China
and of course a Pakistan out of India.
With a benign, ‘democratic’ dictator like Lee Kuan Yew, in the frame, the Singapore out of Malaysia is too small and too short-term a success to make any impact. The other thing is the Western ‘nation’ model has been a huge failure. How many countries have been successful in this quest for ‘nationhood’?
- Cyprus, a familiar stopover in spy lore (sfgate.com)