Friday and we like to take a detour to a classic movie, a Sidney Lumet 1-acter dating from 1957 starring a host of star actors, not in the least Henry Fonda. At stake is the life of a young Latino and what seems apparently to be a clear cut case for the jury, is not so straightforward for Henry Fonda. He doubts the evidence of the public prosecutor and step by step manages to convince the other jury members when the final deliberation takes place.
Over now to November 2011, the difficult budget round, the OLO crash and the Leterme rescue mission asking everybody to buy staatsbons @ 4% when rates where at almost 6%. Again, no real solutions were presented but the good Belgian citizens bought into the story and the “sound” investment.
March 2013 and Ministers openly saying upfront that back in November/December 2012 they already knew that the current budget wouldn’t meet targets, Europe would do difficult and the budget control would become extremely difficult. Gouverner, c’est prévoir, n’est-ce pas ?
So what’s at stake ? Well, apparently there seems to be a misunderstanding already about the efforts. EUR 1 bio structural savings doesn’t equal 1% or 1,5% of GDP what the IMF has urged for. That would involve an effort of around EUR 4 to 6 bio but never mind, only the Dutch (EUR 16 bio), the Italians (EUR 50 bio) and some others in Europe are stupid enough to make such a structural effort, as they say. It seems we are gonna continue to sell out our house by liquidating wooden furniture. Only this time, it won’t serve to heat the stove or pay off the rent, this time it will serve to have the outstanding debt drop below 100%. Bravo, on applaudit très fort. And now for some structural measures with a view, if you please.
Back to Henry Fonda. Today we heard that some people are annoyed about some ministers acting difficult about the composition of measures to be taken. They are accused of being idealistic and gung-ho to be front page news. Briefly, let’s finish this off today because we have our ski vacation planned and we have a plane to catch. Henry Fonda in 1957 stood up for justice because the issue at stake – the life of a presumed guilty Latino kid – was too important to judge over in a split second. One of the jury members, who quickly voted for guilty and death penalty, was motivated by the fact that it was a warm summer day, too hot in the jurors’ room and having tickets to go and see a NY Yankee baseball game.
Democracy is all about respect towards its citizens. Politicians should at least have the decency to make an effort when it comes to important decisions about the well being of future generations. And have respect towards the voters because they awarded them with a huge responsibility and a nice remuneration package. So I would invite the Rue de La Loi to show some dignity for once.
Cheers and have a nice weekend