In the UK, there is an election coming up. As there are several things going on in Europe that would double UKip’s vote and send George Osborne marching into the powder cabinet, the UK media set has decided you don’t need to know about it. So yes, Farage is right when he says we shouldn’t be in Europe – because we don’t care about it and would much prefer Rupert Murdoch as our Lord High Protector; and he is right when he says the UK media have persistently, over three decades, lied about what the EU is really like.
The trouble with Nige is that his solution is to buy one of the proprietors for himself, and this does I’m afraid come under the two wrongs, not right rule of being an idiot. But that’s another debate for another column: all I would say for now is here are some things you almost certainly didn’t read in your favourite newspaper this morning…because with the exception of specialist pages 153-5, they weren’t visible:
* Last night, Greece rebuffed an EC order not to pass the Relief Bill in Athens, and the law was enacted by a huge majority including those with a murky past of Troika collaboration.
* Banco Madrid filed for bankruptcy yesterday, and won’t be bailed out by the Rajoy Government.
* At the last US stress test, both Santander and Deutsche banks were bluntly told by the Fed that that business models “left enormous doubts” about their ability to withstand an “event”.
* The Italian toxic loans figure went up €185bn in January 2015.
* Yesterday, the ECB opened its multi-billion euro f**k-off sign in Frankfurt. The event was celebrated by violent demonstrations from start to finish.
* Several Troikanauts have come out publicly over the last week to say that the Austro-German banking contagion is a far bigger issue than Greece.
* Three days ago, France’s persistent deficit went unpunished: no austerity, no IMF, no Troika, no Schäuble screaming in meetings, no Draghi cutting off their QE liquidity. One law for the rich, and another for the poor.
The Guardian won’t print this stuff, because its attitude to the EU (like that of the Labour Party) is up there with the Flat Earth Society. The Barclays Twin-Turdo powered Daily Telegraph won’t because the Tories are largely pro-Europe, and they want them to win so they can carry on prostituting the paper’s content with impunity. Which is fine because that’s their shtick….and yes, I know yesterday was Budget Day and all that, but it doesn’t explain what none of the subjects above have been given a proper airing….and why, on the day that somebody finally defied the European Commission and their bosses in Troika2, for the British press Greece suddenly became an uncountry.
It is an amazing attitude, is it not, to claim to be passionate about the EU, and then spend an entire election and Budget pretending it doesn’t exist.