I have been too angry to write about Cyprus until today. I cannot imagine what the people in the USA or any nation would do or could do with the possibility of a forcible, foreign inspired “tax” on bank savings. I do not subscribe to the “taxation is theft” theory of libertarianism. But this truly is a form of theft. And I would say, if we do not get out house in order, it could happen here, too.
I resent the European leaders again commanding a sovereign nation to do what we say or else. Here’s the NYT’s quote of German Chancellor Merkel:
In a closed-door meeting with members of her junior coalition partner, the Free Democrats, Chancellor Angela Merkel made clear her impatience with the government in Cyprus, stating that “under no circumstances can we give up our principles,” the public television network ARD reported.
At least the EU elites have some principles: They opposed a taking from pension plans to pay the bailout:
Before concrete details emerged, German leaders made it clear they would not back a deal that involved nationalizing the state-owned companies’ pensions, a measure that is rejected in Berlin as more socially dangerous than even the original plan to tax smaller savings.
“When you consider that there was massive resistance against involving the savings, then it is not easy to see how tapping the pension funds, which we view as socially a much more drastic step, is a very good idea,” Steffen Seiber, Ms. Merkel’s spokesman, told reporters.
Obviously no one from the Old Dominion writes the Chancellor’s material! The EU elites must have feared violence. But I wonder: Can’t the EU work it out with Cyprus without this sort of thing? No wonder they are considering a turn to Russia:
Fury among ordinary Cypriots at what they see as a ham-fisted European raid on their savings has stoked a search for an alternative economic saviour — Russia.
On Wednesday, the island’s finance minister was holding talks in Moscow about a loan, after his country’s parliament rejected a €10 billion EU-led bailout.