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Ex-EU Boss José Manuel Barroso to speak at FT Business of Luxury Conference in Lisbon

Next month former President of the European Commission José Manuel Barroso will speak at a Financial Times conference on the Business of Luxury in Lisbon (see bottom of image below).


Barroso’s Lisbon speech will be in stark contrast to his role as Chairman of the UEFA Foundation for Children, designed to help underprivileged kids around the world.

The May speaking engagement is much more in line with his role as Chairman of another organisation — the mega-powerful US Investment Bank for the Ultra Ultra High Net Worth: Goldman Sachs  aka Government Sachs aka the Vampire Squid.

Goldman was first labelled the Vampire Squid, due to their parasitic nature, in this 2010 Matt Taibbi article for Rolling Stone Magazine:

The conflict of interests have not gone unnoticed:

Barroso was severely criticised for joining a bank that had so mercilessly profited  from destabilising the Euro, particularly through its dealings with Greece,  only 20 months after leaving the top job in European politics..

Revolving Door

Tony Blair received some stick for working for JP Morgan after leaving office.

Ex-German Chancellor Gerhard Schröder , who works for Rothschild, was once referred to as a “political prostitute” by US Democrat Congressman Tom Lantos for objecting to the Iraq War but then  taking money off Vladimir Putin.

Euro architect and former ECB Chief Economist Otmar Issing moved to Goldman Sachs in 2006, just months after leaving the ECB.

And Mario Draghi, current head of the European Central Bank was at Goldman while they were making mega profits out of hiding Greece’s debt from the Greek public and from the ECB itself.

Barroso himself argued that as the  minimum 18 months cooling off period had passed he should be allowed to join Goldman.

If times get tough, then maybe the Obamas will head for Wall Street or the British Virgin Islands too.

Meanwhile here’s Barroso  talking about a multi-speed Europe

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Transatlantic Aliens

I came across Transatlantic Aliens in the bookshop today.


The blurb referred to the cultural contribution made by Europeans who moved to the US in the 1930s and 1940s.

By looking at how celebrated outsiders such as Theodor Adorno, Simone de Beauvoir and Vladimir Nabokov experienced American life, Will Norman celebrates their transformation of alienation into novel ways of interpreting the modern world.

Given President Trump’s recent Executive Order indefinitely banning all refugees from Syria from entering the US, the book — which came out in October — couldn’t be more relevant.

This is an excellent blog post by author Will Norman on the need to not demonise foreigners — written just days after President Trump won the 2016 US Election:


Norman starts by saying, “These are dark days for Cosmopolitanism.”

Dark days indeed.

Theresa May told the Conservative Party conference in October that a Citizen of the World is a Citizen of Nowhere.

Following Amber Rudd’s speech about naming and shaming firms who hire too many foreign workers — the Pound dropped like a stone.


One interpretation of Cosmopolitanism is that the Cosmopolis, the world state, is an ideal state in which citizens must live their lives regardless of local constraints. This is a morally driven universe which comprises of international solidarity above all else.

I do not feel this is Mrs May’s interpretation. Although English Culture is itself a mix of so many influences, the incorporation of habits, customs and languages from around the world makes the PM squirm. 

In Mrs May’s worldview, the more that Cosmopolitans feel they have in common with outsiders, the more readily they distinguish themselves from fellow British citizens and the less loyalty they show.

Tory donor Lord Ashcroft commissioned a study into the US election which referred to Cosmopolitan Activists — 25% of whom are less than 24 years old — the majority of whom believe in gun control, government regulation, green energy, same sex marriage, immigration, multiculturalism, social liberalism and feminism.


There are so many contradictions in what our politicians now say that there’s no fun in spotting inconsistencies.

Now that they’ve lost power, maybe here are two former Chancellors whose words we can actually trust.

Here is George Osborne on how the Government has prioritised controlling immigration over the economy:

And Ken Clarke on how Enoch Powell would have been surprised that the Tory party is now ‘mildly’ anti immigrant:

Where do we go from here? 

I hope there is more public participation in the debate surrounding the terms of Brexit.

If not then commission hungry lobbyists will run the show and sell Britain into feudalism for a fraction of what it is really worth. 

The British Parliamentary system is not equipped to override inherent conflicts of interest – if this isn’t fixed immediately this will lead to Britain’s downfall.

How to solve such a problem? 

Strategic Noise. We have an accountability problem. Certain people are getting away with passing lots of favourable legislation because there is no independent scrutiny or oversight.

Better reporting of parliamentary, local government and international affairs would do a lot to warn people of what is coming in a structured way that allows for organised civil responses that go beyond attending protests. 

The Government is well equipped to rely on and perpetuate bureaucracy – the rest of us need to start catching up.

Too many people are keeping their knowledge to themselves. 

The more we know about what is actually happening up and down the country and about the political process the more we can more meaningfully get involved.

Will political parties suddenly adjust to allow new ideas? 

Or will they do what they can to protect the status quo?

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Unions love Trump, Max Keiser to run in North Carolina

Max Keiser says Trump’s Infrastructure Plan Seduces Unions

Max Keiser tells how Trump is seducing unions with his infrastructure plans and dropping TPP.

Max Keiser to run in North Carolina

In mid-January Max Keiser said he will announce his official candidacy for Congress in March.

Trump the Autocrat

David Frum, author of George W Bush’s Axis of Evil speech, has this to say about the future under Trump:

Starbucks & Refugees

Interesting to see Starbucks’ position from a PR perspective — and the accompanying backlash.

Where’s Jared Kushner?

Someone’s running the White House – but it’s not Jared Kushner.

Where’s Obama?

Meanwhile Obama is not going away quietly but his legacy is being questioned: