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Debt adjusted: EU rebrands bankruptcy

Patrick L Young is expert in global financial markets working in multiple disciplines, ranging from trading independently to running exchanges.

Published time: February 20, 2014 13:58
AFP Photo/Alexander Klein

Even by the acute standards of Euro-buffoonery, a new report beggars belief as the EU seeks to offend nobody but, as always, ends up running from reality.

The terrifying point about EU policy is how often some tiny kernel of idiocy can be written in a report and then find itself doing the equivalent of going viral amongst the Brussels bureaucrats prior to developing into yet another law to add to the burden of paperwork which strangles enterprise throughout the 28 nation, er, free trade zone. The EU is increasingly bound together by red tape as opposed to being free to trade with the much more competitive economies of Asia and elsewhere.

The EU is, to put it diplomatically, embarrassed. Deeply economically embarrassed. We must be careful not to state anything more bluntly here otherwise you see I may cause offence. Yes, those getting on for 30 percent of folks in the Mediterranean who have barely any hope of gainful employment in the damned, doomed and stagnant eurozone, may well be rendered incandescent if I explain the reality of their situation which is economically grim. Indeed, for those facing bankruptcy. Well, fret no more.

The European Union, that finely tuned agent of commerce (er, killer of jobs I mean, surely?) has just produced a report which is really worried about bankruptcy. It’s not actually too worried about bankruptcy itself per se. No! Rather, it’s worried about the stigma of it all.

How interesting therefore to compare the situation in the USA with Europe. Even with the stunningly anti-enterprise President Obama delaying recovery with unaffordable healthcare provisions and automakers unions which, actually few want to join, going bankrupt is tantamount to a rite of passage.

In dreary old Europe, the idea of making bankruptcy easier to go through appears tedious to lawmakers, but of course, there is a politically correct twist. Yes indeed folks, the EU is proposing a marvelous reform to bankruptcy: calling it something else!

Traders are pictured at their desks in front of the DAX board at the Frankfurt stock exchange (Reuters)

This is of course the joyful politically correct delusion (also popular across the Atlantic) where a slaphead midget is transformed into a titan amongst men by being known as ‘vertically & follically challenged.’ No matter what phrase can be deployed, the politically correct will root out any possible innuendo of inferiority until language has been left with all the passion of Orwellian Newspeak.

Therefore, yes, you guessed it, ladies and gentlemen, that magnificent gravy train elite, the EU, have suggested vast bankruptcy reforms: they’re going to ban the term!

In place of a broken Italian bench (‘banca rotta’ - whence ‘bankrupt’ originates), EU denizens propose using the term ‘debt adjusted’ instead. Gosh, genius.

I suspect by the time you read that last sentence already tens of thousands of Spanish and Greek youths felt liberated while their parents realized their mortgages were no longer massive weights around their neck. By being termed ‘debt adjusted’ they were immediately back on the road to prosperity!

Sadly being a pragmatic financial type, I also have to note that all of a sudden indeed the eurozone can itself escape a huge multinational stigma as now Mediterranean nations can join the ranks of the ‘debt adjusted’ amongst all the other incompetently managed, spendthrift, over-regulated nations of Europe. Hmmm, I may need to go back and polish up a touch on my ability to avoid the truth, or rather ‘facilitate stigma avoidance’ but let’s plough on, shall we?

The British Conservative MP Brooks Newman offered a marvelous surmise of the situation: "This shows just how intellectually bankrupt - sorry debt adjusted - the European Union has become.”

Businesses throughout the EU want to grow. Workers are desperate to get back into employment. The economy desperately needs sustainable growth.

Meanwhile the EU is rooted in denial about its failed currency project. Commissioners are increasingly pushing for a political union nobody outside the Brussels bubble of delusion actually wants.

However, at least the EU has a crack team working on redefining a key economic status phrase. Thus the entrepreneurs who power the small business that drive the economy will feel less embarrassed if they cannot overcome the myriad problems which come from moronic top down socialism locked in a lethal embrace with the plodding corporates who trough at the EU regulatory tables.

Without audited accounts, without economic coherence and increasingly irrelevant in world affairs, the EU is indeed facing its own ‘debt adjustment’ destiny.

The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.

Comments (12)

 

mergon 02.03.2014 20:01

They built a system to generate jobs ,money and taxes ,to keep the machine going they employed people to make rule and regulation ,problem was they had to justify their jobs and just kept going .

In the death they just chocked the system to death with rules and regs and they are still going !

 

Regula 02.03.2014 07:40

To get out of the mire requires calingl things by their real name so the problem can actually be looked at and defined in terms everybody understands.

As to bankruptcy - some of the greatest business men went bankrupt the first time they tried. They learned and made it thereafter. The EU needs to let go of its prudishness and accept that nothing is perfect. If it wrecks, you analyze why it failed, you correct and try again. Such a simple, more practical attitude would simplify a lot - and simplifying is the path to health in business. It's called streamlining, to make business more dynamic. That is youth.

 

Gonças V. Faria 25.02.2014 11:56

How about writing an article that actually explains what the consequences of this could be instead of doing a biased ranting at it? Does the change in name actually incur any changes in the process or it's consequences? Voicing an opinion is not journalism, rather providing some constructive criticism would make for better journalism.

View all comments (12)
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