Tuesday, 10 August 2010

Hard Times in Brussels

The days of bank staff packing their desks into trays and leaving work for the last time under a flurry of camera flashes may be gone, but the age of austerity now approaches, with news that food, fuel and, well, pretty much everything, is subject to a price hike while pay is frozen and more public service jobs cut.
Meanwhile the front page of FT Deutschland reported yesterday that EU Budegt Commissioner Janusz Lewandowski has suggested he is to put forward a range of options for DIRECT TAX to fund the EU from September. Possible taxes could include a tax on bank transactions and a tax on air travel. He is also quoted as saying about the UK rebate that "the justification...is much less convincing than it used to be" adding that "If the EU had more of its own revenues then transfers from national budgets could be reduced." He cited Germany as a country hoping to reduce their contribution *unsurprisingly I may add, as she currently pays in the most and ahead of the UK, is the primary net contributor. She has also recently been stung as the emergency purse when Eurozone economies get into trouble.
But DIRECT TAX? Do I need to repeat that?
Bad enough that the Labour Government handed back around a quarter of our rebate, to which we qualified by paying in far more than we receive in return. If we forego the rest of the rebate we can expect to pip Germany to pole position on being the bank of Europe. Meanwhile, next year when Romanians are entitled to free EU migration we can surely expect to be handing over even more jobs to non UK workers while writing out the cheques to improve their roads and welfare. We'll soon see the mettle of Cameron's pledges on so-called Referendum Locks. It will be interesting to see how much he packs below his Tory Chastity belt.
And to make matters worse, we have busted the EU for even more frivolous waste. UKIP revealed all Brussels officials and politicians can get Viagra for free if needed and can even claim for Heroin replacement Methadone under the European Commission scheme. They are also entitled to penile implants. Official guidelines for claims read: "Treatments with Viagra will from now on be reimbursable." The document also says drugs used for withdrawal and narcotics treatments for addicts can also be fully reimbursed "at the rate of 100 per cent for a maximum of six months."
Hard times indeed.