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Tuesday, 31 January 2012


For more than an hour, at prime time on 9 TV channels, on Sunday 29th of January, 2012 President Sarkozy presented his analysis of what would be good for France in the present context of the World.  As in previous such "interviews" he refused  to reveal when he would declare his candidature for the next Presidentiel Election but admitted that he knew what electors expected, and that he would not avoid his duty when the time came !!! 

In particular, he announced that the Government will reduce Employers' payroll charges.  The aim is to reduce the cost of production and make French products more competitive. To compensate for the lost revenues, he intends to increase the turnover (sales) tax.  This would directly hit Asian imports as much as the sales of French products in France, but it would favour French production and exports in the long run !!!  These measures will be introduced on the 1st of  October 2012.

The immediate reaction of Socialists was expected:  the increase of turnover tax will increase the cost of living in France !!!


Monday, 30 January 2012


When David Cameron "Vetoed" the intention of France and Germany to introduce a tax on financial transactions, he did so, in my opinion, for the following two reasons;

   1)  The EU, in accordance with the Lisbon Treaty, did not have the right to impose taxes directly on EU members, without a unanimous vote by all EU members.

  2)   The tax proposed would have "destroyed" the City of London as a financial center, even though it was meant to provide revenue to bolster the defence of the EURO.  This was understandably totally unacceptable to David Cameron and Britain !!!

So far, so good !!!  Today, David Cameron is in Brussels for the next round of EU "discussions".  There will be talk about the "EUROZONE" but this does not yet exist legally.  There is no Treaty which concerns the preoccupations concerning the "EURO" and its future. 

There will certainly be further attempts to suck Britain into plans to pay for rescuing the EURO, but Britain still has its veto !!!  One could propose a new EU division called the "EUROZONE" but this needs a detailed "sub treaty", something which cannot happen with the blink of an eyelid !!!

Something which will certainly not be raised concerns the new split of EU overheads which Mr Barroso must be contemplating !!!  There have been so many private and public discussions, activities and meetings about the EURO, which exclude non-EURO countries, that 2011 EU expenses and those in the coming years cannot be farmed out as in previous years !!!

David Cameron will certainly be alert to all this and make his British feelings known !!! 

Sunday, 29 January 2012


Greece was first seduced by the EU bail-out loans, which at the time were a comfortable solution for their then problems.  No one at the time asked any hard questions to identify the reasons why the Greek economy in fact needed 110 Billion Euros to stave off their financial crisis.

EU politicians, to protect a euro currency country from bankruptcy, blindly lent 110 Billion Euros of financing in a way no lucid investor would ever lend financial help !!!

Now the same EU politicians, who lent 110 Billion Euros of financing, then proposed another 110 Billion a year later, which has not yet been paid, have got cold feet !!! They are hesitating !!!  Have they suddenly realized that one should not jump at the chance to lend money to a potential bankrupt ? 

"EUROZONE" politicians, namely Merkel above all and Sarkozy, now want Greece to submit to direct EUROZONE budgetary controls !!!  They apparantly seem to want an EU general manager to supervise  Greek economic controls.

This is not an acceptable proposition in the light of the current EU Treaty !!!  Does it , however foreshadow what the awaited "EUROZONE" Treaty will enshrine ?

Greece should not accept outside interference in its affairs, not in the current state of the EU.  The eurozone does not yet exist !!!


Saturday, 28 January 2012


What is holding back David Cameron from passing legislation to control any of the following problems ?

1)  Is it right that shareholders' rights are diluted when Directors are "rewarded"  for  "just doing their job" ?

2)  Should the details of any Director's Contract or Bonus Conditions Contract  not be officially filed so that interested parties such as Shareholders, Auditors or the public can have access to the details ?

3) Should the Chancellor George Osborne not insist that there should be a cap on the earnings of each individual Director or "Manager" unless the excess above "normal" earnings possible is filed in a contract ?

4)  Should heavy penal fines not be envisaged if Directors or others receive or permit the payment of unreported  "benefits"  abroad, either directly or indirectly ?

5)  Should legal limits not be set on what "Remuneration Committees" are empowered to do ?   

If Prime Minister Cameron and the Chancellor Osborn want to keep their noses clean they must introduce legislation on the above matters. They were elected to do just such things !!!

Friday, 27 January 2012


During three hours last evening on French television, François Hollande, the Official Socialist Candidate in the Presidential Elections was questioned on his programmed intentions if elected as the new President of France early May 2012.

He had, earlier this week, already published his Socialist Manifesto but last evening Journalists of all shades had the chance to question him closer on his intentions.

As a general comment on my part, the Socialist Manifesto does not address enough of the critical issues in France and Europe or in  enough detail.  If François Hollande is elected and replaces Nicolas Sarkozy as President, I cannot imagine from what he said in his Manifesto or last night on Television, how he will really achieve his aims in the EU or in the EUROZONE.  His objectives with respect to migration in the EU or immigration were not clear !!!

His intentions in France are clearer; he wants to tax higher income tax payers more in order to balance the books of the nation.   He will reorganise Banks and tax heavily banks which favour get-rich-quick policies, as opposed to those which favour traditional policies and make investments and loans to private customers and businesses.

No mention was made of the problem concerning the 35 hour week which, compared with other EU countries, penalises French exports and does nothing to fight cheap imports from China and Asia.       

Last night, to mention the name of Sarkozy, the outgoing President, was anathema, even though in opinion polls generally, Hollande at present has a comfortable lead.

The last person to debate with François Hollande was the French Minister for Foreign Affairs, Alain Juppé.  He posed several tough questions to François Hollande, a lot harder and less friendly than those asked by the journalists earlier.  I was left with the impression that if ever Sarkozy decides not to seek a second term, Juppé would be a perfect replacement.  He had the measure of Hollande last night.


Wednesday, 25 January 2012


In the British Press one reads that Ronnie Tretton, aged 27, has been convicted 88 times during the last ten years for offences, including 25 times for theft related crimes.  He is a one-man crime wave in Southend where he lives.

Unfortunately there are others like Ronnie Tretton who flout the law and have a string of convictions to their name. The reason for this is clear.  Their punishment for their crimes does not deter them in the slightest.  In fact they probably consider that risks are worth taking because they are not caught very often, far from it !!!  For them crime is their "profitable tax-free business" !!!

Should the British Government and the EU also, not consider doubling the punishment for habitual criminals each time they reappear for sentencing ?  Would it be wrong to protect the Human Rights of victims of habitual criminals ?

When crime is profitable the punishment must be stiff to act as a deterrant.             

Tuesday, 24 January 2012


From reports it seems that the Prime Minister of HUNGARY, Viktor Orban, is seeking a Standby Loan from the EU of 20 Billion EUROS.  The Hungarian local currency is the FLORINT and it has been sinking against the EURO on international markets.

The EU, or the "EUROZONE" jumped to the rescue of Greece, but now, quite rightly, seems to have got cold feet about bailing out Greece with a further "loan" of 130 Billion Euros.  Everyone learns from mistakes, whatever level one has attained !!!

This Blog warned Readers in its article of  27 December 2011,  that HUNGARY was flouting the rights of its inhabitants with a Constitution which cannot be accepted in the EU.  Now HUNGARY and their leader Viktor Orban is going to retire "early" 274 judges !!!  Two or three judges would not cause a ripple, but 274 is more like getting rid of an opposition of some sort.  Simply said, it is "Diktatorship".

The reputation of Cohn-Bendit, a leader of the Student Uprisings in Paris in 1968,  is renowned.  Now an elected member of the EU Parliament, it was a pleasure recently to see him put Viktor Orban in his place by criticising the Hungarian Constitution !!!  He can now destroy any hopes Viktor Orban may have of "temporary finance" to cure the misdeeds of the Hungarian politicians in recent years !!!

The EU, or "EUROZONE" is not a cow which should be milked until it dies !!!      


FIFA and Blatter only want Goal-Line technology, but real football Pundits, i.e. the real football spectators and experts, who pay to watch the games in stadiums, want more.  They want on the spot "televisual" proof when there are doubts, when the Referee perhaps was not in the best position to see what happened.

Before FIFA and Blatter could react, the FA in England announced that they want to review a flashpoint last Saturday, 21 January 2012,  in the match between Stoke City and West Bromwich Albion.  The referee missed the incident, which was not a "goaline technology incident" but where eye-gouging  is alleged.  I have seen no criticism of the referee or other official relating to this incident !!!

Alas, FIFA are not the leaders of all that is best in Football !!!


Wednesday, 18 January 2012


The normally punchy French President, Sarkozy, appeared quite limp on television at lunchtime today, to report on the meeting between Union of Employers and the Workers Unions.  

One cannot say that today President Sarkozy was "punchy" !!!  He looked tired without much motivation and weighed down with problems. 

Normally he is a convincing fighter who masters the detail of all he talks about.  Today he left the impression that he was relieved when his reporting duties were finished !!!

He said months ago that he would announce in March whether or not, he would be a candidate for the Presidency, for a second and last term of 5 years.  Perhaps today we have had a clue that he has doubts about whether he should stand or not !!! 

Presidential candidates will be looking for further clues !!!   Suddenly campaigning will become serious !!!    

Tuesday, 17 January 2012


Of the numerous candidates who have indicated their intention to stand for election to become the President of France, probably only 10, perhaps 15,  will qualify.  Only 4 or 5 will have a realistic chance to be one of the two leading candidates after the first round on APRIL 22, and thus to be present in the run-off two weeks later, on May 6, 2012.

Some of the Candidates eliminated after the first round will then haggle with the two remaining candidates.  Their objective will be to obtain from either of the two candidates promises to help them to attain the objectives of their party and their voters. 

Something may, in this context be a cabinet job or just favourable legislation for their party.  

The 4 candidates expected to finish at the top are;

           President SARKOZY (his candidature is awaited).
           François HOLLANDE, the official Socialist candidate.
           Marine LE PEN, the official National Front candidate.
           François BAYROU, Democratic Party.
Other leading candidates expected to be present in the first round of the presidential election are:

          Jean-Luc Melenchon, Left wing
          Dominique de Villepin, Republican.
          Eva Joly, Ecology + The Greens. 
                Nathalie Arthaud,  Workers Struggle Party
          Nicolas Dupont-Aignan, Against the EU
          Christine Boutin, Christian Democratic Party.
          Frédéric Nihous, Hunting, Fishing and Nature.
          Corrine Lepage, CAP 21. 
          Philippe Poutou, New Anti-Capitalist Party.

This article will be updated in due course. It should be noted that all candidates must file the necessary 500 signatures before the March, 16 2012.  


The Presidential Election in France will take place on April 22 , 2012.  If no candidate obtains more than 50% of the votes, the two leading candidates will contest a second election 15 days later, on May 6, 2012.

All candidates must register the names of 500 sponsors before March 16, 2012. The list filed will be examined to eliminate all non-approved sponsors on the list. The end result will be that 10 to 15 candidates are qualified to present themselves for election on April 22, 2012.

Today there are approximately 40 Candidates but many will be eliminated because they have failed to obtain the signatures of 500 valid sponsors.

The main Candidates who as of today, are expected to figure on the final list of Official Candidates, are detailed in the next article entitled "PRESIDENTIALS 2012:  THE PROBABLE CANDIDATES " 

Monday, 16 January 2012


The leading French television station, TF1, decided to transmit, yesterday evening at prime time, the sorry story of Maud Sapin, a woman aged about 59, who was arrested at her home on the suspicion that she had falsified her driving license !!!

The facts are simple.  She was unknown to the police, i.e.  had no criminal record,  she had held a driving license for 35 years but she had been caught driving at more than 50 kilometers per hour in a built up area.  Police came to her home because there was a query about her driving license.  She had committed her "crime" on March 8, 2010 !!!

In her interview on TV she tearfully said she had been subjected to questioning as though she was a criminal, fingerprinted and was finally ordered to undress completely in the presence of a policewoman !!!  She then spent the night in a cell !!!  From the interview it was not clear whether she had been informed of her "Human Rights" or Legal Rights to call on an Advocate !!! 

The next day the police discovered that her driving license was not forged !!!  She was released. Last month only, in December 2011, 18 months after her arrest and release, she made a complaint about the police.    

France is not a Totalitarian Country !!!  The foregoing facts shock every normal thinking citizen.  However, the next Presidential Election is now less than 100 days away !!!  How can the National N° 1 Television Station, TF 1, justify transmitting the above interview just before the coming election for events which took place almost two years ago ? 

This in fact may put unecessary pressure on and orientate, the electors' choice of the future President of France.  Is this admissible ?

Saturday, 14 January 2012


"I like being able to fire people",  Mitt Romney, the Republican front runner for the USA Presidentials said in New Hampshire !!!

He should spend more time listening to either prospective employees or possible voters before firing.  He is perhaps aiming a bit too high in running for the Presidency !!!   Voters will no doubt make up their own minds !!!

Friday, 13 January 2012


Rating Agencies have a responsibility towards their "clients" but they also have a responsibility towards the companies and countries they judge !!!  Must they always publicize their thinking in such a way that destroys companies and countries before they have acted ?

Quiet, confidential information to "clients" is what they are paid for.  When they destroy companies and countries with downgrading credit worthiness and publish their "opinion", without giving the reason, they punish others, but they do not suffer if their judgement is not just.

Standard & Poor's have withdrawn publicly the French AAA rating.  Will they publish their reasons why, straight away, now ?  Or will they wait because they are anticipating that something will happen these coming days with respect to the EURO crisis ?  Is that why they have today downgraded the French Credit Rating ?   


A 100 jours de l'Election Presidentielle, la précampagne prend des allures d'une gigantesque "Boîte à Idées" !!!

Côté Sarkozy, qui n'a pas encore fait acte de candidature, on relance l'idée de la TVA sociale, de la taxe sur les transactions financières.  Côté Holland, on annonce la suppression puis la modulation du quotient familial...  Côté Eva Joly, on propose deux jours fériés pour Kippour et l'AID...

Assez de gesticulation !!!  Il est temps que chaque candidat présente un programme cohérent et ne se contente ni d'un "catalogue à la Prévert", ni d'une mosaique d'idées sans consistance réelle !!!   

Quant à Marine Le Pen, elle a d'ores et déjà présenté un programme chiffré. 

Thursday, 12 January 2012


COLUCHE was a sensation in 1981 when he announced his candidature for the Presidential election which was finally won by Mitterand !!! Coluche was a popular comic at the time, well loved because of his outrageous sarcasm towards politicians in particular.

The impact his candidature made was spectacular.  How can you fight a comic with no proven program but who with his popularity could pick up all the floating votes !!!  The real politicians were worried to death !!!  He withdrew his candidature before the first round of voting.

He died in a Motorcycle accident in 1986, aged 41, but not before launching the "Restaurants from our Hearts" for the Needy and for this he is still fondly remembered even today.  They open every winter. 

 ERIC CANTONA, now aged 45, was a well known and very competitive footballer who played for Manchester United.  He is also  remembered for a KUNG FU attack on a spectator in the crowd who was niggling him. This and his football made his reputation !!!

He has announced his intention to stand as a Presidential candidate and will send a letter to numerous Mayors in France to try and find the required 500 sponsors. At present he has no political experience.

His main objective is to highlight the lack of housing for low income and destitute families.  This is something that other candidates, from the left or the right, have not covered so far !!!  Cantona, just like Coluche, could steal floating votes and depending on his impact cause a flurry among the three or four leading contenders for the Presidency. 

He may withdraw from the Presidential race early, before the first round of voting just like Coluche, but he will benefit from free media coverage and prime time interviews on television just like other candidates, to present his views !!!    


Wednesday, 11 January 2012


Alex Salmond, Leader of the Scottish National Party, wants a vote for Scottish Independence !!!  If he wants to convince anyone else except his close friends, he must clearly explain how he sees Scottish Independence after a Scottish Independence vote.

What kind of Independence does he aspire to ?  Does he want to create, for example, the Republic of Scotland ?  Does he want to obtain Total Independence from everything connected with the rest of the UK and/or the EU ? 

Alex Salmond must be clear in all his speeches of what his real objective is.  Every decision has a cost !!!  The costs must be calculated and presented to the Scottish electorate. (This presupposes that non Scottish voters have been identified and will not have a vote).

There are some major Questions which need a speedy answer:

1) Who will be the Head of State of Independent Scotland ?
    - The Queen ?  Alex Salmond ?  Gordon Brown ?   

2) Will Independent Scotland have a "House of Lords" ?

3) Besides income from North Sea Oil and a tax on Whiskey, what else will cover the costs of Independence ?   

Alex Salmond has a lot to explain, but can one be sure that he will convince the whole big wide World outside of Scotland ?

Tuesday, 10 January 2012


When I first came to Paris in the 1950's, there were colourful "sites" of tramps congregated over Metro grills of hot air, swigging their wine.  All the tourists returned home with indelible memories of these harmless tramps !!!

There are few typical old style French tramps left now.  They have been replaced by what we now call "SDF's" (people without fixed domiciles).

Some are old style French tramps but many are "Roms",  i.e. "Romanian Travellors", or footloose foreigners, but also French people with "problems" or without a full time job.  They occupy key "begging" sites as though they have a leasehold on the four or five square meters they sit on daily.  The Roms are served meals by their "landlords".  This is a typical description of where I live in the upmarket part of the 17th arrondissement in Paris, and also in certain other areas of Paris.

This has been a growing problem during the last 30 years in France. Lack of enough housing for such people is a root cause.  Free migration in the EU adds to the problem.  Polititions shy away from discussing all this, especially at this time in France with the upcoming Presidential elections and then the General election !!! 

It seems Eric Cantona, the former Manchester United footballer, may become a candidate in the 2012 Presidentials in France.  His main object is, apparently, to highlight the absence of adequate housing for the needy. 


Sunday, 8 January 2012


Every two or three years there are animated discussions in Britain on the problem  of  EUTHANASIA.  Recently another report was issued on the subject and of course both sides, those who are for and those who are against, aired their views. 
Should any form of euthanasia be permitted ?

The updated (amended)  SUICIDE ACT (1961) states quite clearly that it is not a crime to commit suicide !!!  The Act also makes clear that complicity, aiding and/or abetting anyone to commit suicide, is a criminal act.  The punishment is Imprisonment for up to 14 Years.

What is not covered by the Act or by Jurisprudence, is the case of a terminally ill patient or person who is suffering enormous pain and who wants to die !!!  Those who are mentally alert can obtain legal advice, sign documents, then go abroad with a friend or family member to a country where Euthanasia is permitted.  In this case it would, in my oppinion, be difficult for the Director of Public Presecutions  (DPP) to bring someone to trial.

The main case that remains, is that of a terminally ill person who is considered as being insane or who cannot express himself coherently.  People around him are fully aware of his condition and know he wants to die.  In such a case a procedure should be established where a judge is named to proceed with an enquiery.  The DPP is probably the best person to propose most of the conditions.

The object must be to introduce a Euthanasia Rights Law.  Without such a law, situations will arise when the lives of hopelessly terminally sick people are secretly ended on grounds of compassion.

Friday, 6 January 2012


On December 25, 2011, this Blog published an article entitled "FRENCH PRESIDENTIALS: THE RACE FOR 500 "SPONSORS".  The reality of what was described in this article was revealed in a PRIME TIME  interview of Marine LE PEN on French Television yesterday evening.

The circumstances are very easy to present.  In 2002, to the stupefaction of the Socialists their candidate Lionel Jospin, was pushed out of the second spot by Jean-Marie LE PEN, the father of Marine LE PEN, the then Leader of the National Front !!!  Jacques Chirac, however, became President after the run-off !!! 

Now President Sarkozy and the UMP Party and François Holland and his Socialist Party, are both anxiously looking over their shoulders !!!  No one has forgotten what happened in 2002  and everyone knows that the situation is ripe for a repeat scenario !!!

Marine LE PEN has a softer and more convincing style of speaking than her father. In her interview she virtually said that she was up against a brick wall when talking to Mayors and asking them to sponsor her candidature !!!  The UMP and SOCIALIST party instructions were;  no sponsorships for the NATIONAL FRONT !!!   It is, however, a fact that in virtually all opinion polls Marine LE PEN has obtained at least 20% to 25% of the votes.

The French Constitution, in this case, does not punish anyone who interferes with the democratic right to sponsor and vote for a candidate.  This is a flagrant abuse of power.  No one can now act to change things, but when the General Election takes place after the Presidential elections, beware if the National Front holds the balance of power !!!  

Thursday, 5 January 2012


In spite of the recent "BRITISH EU VETO" which David Cameron used, to make clear to Angela Merkel and Nicholas Sarkozy that Britain would not accept to pay for the "bottomless costs" to save the EURO,  another attempt to make Britain pay something has already been put together.

The European Commission, of which Manuel Barroso is the President, wants to raise 45 Billion Euros through a levy on share dealings and other financial operations in the EU.  The tax would be a minimal one centime of a EURO on each transaction !!!

This would hit the City financial area right between the eyes.  Business would be transferred from the City to other world financial centres.  The result would be lower profits and job losses;  the total loss to Britain alone would probably be much higher than the total tax collected by the EU !!!  What the effect of this tax would be on the Pound Sterling needs to be calculated !!!

Propping-up the EURO has been badly mismanaged in my humble opinion.  The EU and its LISBON TREATY were not ready for staving off the GREEK bankruptcy or to avoid the consequent run on the EURO !!!

Now no one in the EU or "EUROZONE"  really wants to provide more funding for Greece.  The Greeks know this and understand that their sole realistic option is to declare their country bankrupt and to abandon the EURO !!!  This could happen very quickly !!! 

Wednesday, 4 January 2012


Sepp Blatter and FIFA are slowly introducing, but oh so slowly, Goal Line Technology !!!  What is holding them back ?  Even without the help of Goal Line Technology, just the help of simple television pictures convinces many armchair critics whether an incident in a match has been correctly judged by the referee or not.

If Sepp Blatter needs another eight years in office to give birth to and polish his Perfect Goal Line Technology project, a better solution would be to oust all his plans and within two years impose Television Replays (like in rugby) in all Premier League Football Games.  As this Blog has already said before, referees need help, but not just on the goal line.  Lots of things happen behind the referee's back !!!

Can Sepp Blatter now put a date on when his Goaline Project will become obligatory in Premier League games ?


Tuesday, 3 January 2012


One must be very clear about the situation at present.

First of all, the EUROZONE does not yet exist.  Its existence will be enshrined in a Treaty  which at present is being "conceived".   The parents of this Treaty, Merkel and Sarkozy, are actively following all stages of the conception. They  expect the birth sometime in the Spring of 2012.

When their baby, excuse me, their Treaty is proposed for adoption, the godparent countries will certainly look closely at the conditions of the new EUROZONE TREATY !!! 

The first questions will be ;

   -  What will happen if my country wants to quit the EUROZONE ?  What are the conditions ?
   -  Do all countries have equal voting rights on all issues ?
   -  Will the adhesion of my country depend on a referendum in my country ?
   -  What will the annual costs of the EUROZONE be for my country ?
   -  Will there be a EUROZONE Central Bank, EUROZONE MEP's etc. ?
   -  What would be the cost of quitting the EUROZONE or the EU ?

To be quite honest, it is always easy to ask questions at this stage.  However, at a later stage there is never any time left to ask such awkward questions !!!  Once the idea has been fertilised, when the beautiful baby is about to be christened,  Sarkozy will not want to be hampered by political gatecrashers.  Merkel will not want to lose any grace either !!!

To be quite clear, this Blog does not think that the creation and adoption of a EUROZONE  Treaty before the 30th June 2012, for practical reasons, is a viable  possibility.

Sunday, 1 January 2012


Fusilier Duane Knott is facing the possibility of being charged with murder after, in Afghanistan in 2010, shooting a suspect of wanting to plant a bomb !!!

How can you charge a serving soldier of murder ?  Murder is killing with premeditation, and one can add, with the aim of a personal gain !!!

How many Tyrants have never been brought to trial, but who have killed mercilessly in cold blood, to further their personal aims ?

Will the expected BRITISH HUMAN RIGHTS ACT cover the case of Duane Knott ?  Is there any Politician of Government rank in Britain who is prepared to protect British Soldiers ?

What does the Justice Minister, Kenneth Clark think of all this ?