Wherever the policy is enacted, Austerity kills. That has always been the intention of the policy of the Anglo-Dutch Empire, and the effects are such when implemented, be it by the Obama Presidency or the EU system.
Here are several examples of this policy, beginning in the recent days in Detroit.
Detroit Bankruptcy Ruling: ‘Dead-ass Wrong and Morally Corrupt’
“Retirees are going to be put out of house and home. They’re not going to be able to afford a car, food, or medicine,” said a retired Detroit firefighter, quoted by the New York Times, in reaction to Tuesday’s ruling by a federal bankruptcy judge allowing the City of Detroit’s emergency manager to proceed with a plan to slash pensions and healthcare benefits of retired workers.
“We’ll be thrown out of our homes and starving if they seriously slash our pensions. Then they’ll tell us to go to the soup lines,” the AP quotes David Sole, 65, who retired from the Detroit Public Works Department in January after 22 years, and whose wife also is a city retiree.
“Pension is all we got, and now they want to cut that,” Catholic Online quotes a former city worker, who pointed out that neither police officers nor firefighters are eligible for federal Social Security.
“They’re going to lose their homes,” Sharon L. Levine, a lawyer for AFSCME Council 25, told the New York Times. “They’re going to lose medical benefits. They’re not going to be able to feed their families. These are very scary issues.”
“Pensions in Detroit average $19,000 a year, and there is a good possibility that they will be reduced. That is dead-ass wrong and morally corrupt,” declared Lee Saunders, president of AFSCME.
On the other hand, the Wall Street-controlled major news media could scarcely contain their glee at the Detroit ruling.
A Wall Street Journal editorial titled Detroit’s Bankruptcy Breakthrough”, said: “Federal Judge Steven Rhodes removed a major obstacle to Detroit’s economic revival on Tuesday by allowing the city to proceed with its bankruptcy filing. And he may have done an even larger public service for cities nationwide by ruling that the pensions of local government employees can be impaired under Chapter 9 of the federal bankruptcy code. Judge Rhodes also dismissed the union conceit that the language of Michigan’s constitution protects public pensions as ‘contractual obligations’ that cannot be ‘diminished or impaired’ … Judge Rhodes’s wise ruling is a warning to unions and their political bodyguards that Chapter 9 is not a pension safe harbor. American public finance will be better as a result.”
CNN quoted James Spiotto, a lawyer who tracks Chapter 9 bankruptcy filings: “If you’re going to hold too tightly to your constitutional right that your pension can’t be touched, the court is going to prove you wrong.”
The New York Times praised the ruling, which, it said, “dealt a major blow to the widely held belief that state laws preserve public pensions.” It quoted Bruce Babiarz, a spokesman for the Detroit Police and Fire Retirement System, as saying: “This is one of the strongest protected pension obligations in the country here in Michigan… If this ruling is upheld, this is the canary in a coal mine for protected pension benefits across the country. They’re gone.”
Next we have a very strong echo of the principle contained in the Pope’s groundbreaking first encyclical writing, Evangelii Gaudium, with a report from the Council of Europe on the deadly effects of Austerity in Europe. It’s either save the Euro, or save human life, but you can only choose one.
Austerity has eroded human rights, Council of Europe study says
Saving the euro through austerity is a violation of human rights, according to a study by the Council of Europe’s human rights commissioner Nils Muižnieks.
“Many governments in Europe imposing austerity measures have forgotten about their human rights obligations, especially the social and economic rights of the most vulnerable, the need to ensure access to justice, and the right to equal treatment,” said the Council of Europe’s human rights commissioner, at the launch of the research paper, entitled Safeguarding human rights in times of economic crisis.
“Regrettably, international lenders have also neglected to incorporate human rights considerations into many of their assistance programs,” Nils Muižnieks added. He went on to describe conditions imposed on governments in return for assistance as “onerous” and “have prevented governments from investing in essential social protection, health and education programs. When the EU as a central actor in the crisis makes decisions about economic governance in member states and when the Troika sets conditions for rescue packages and loan agreements, the impact on human rights should be better taken into account,” he added.
“The economic crisis has had dire consequences on vulnerable groups, in particular on children and young persons. Youth unemployment in Europe has reached record levels, with millions of young people unemployed with scarred futures. Cuts in child and family benefits, health care and education have also added a strain on millions of families. An increasing number of children are dropping out of school to find employment and support their families, risking life-long setbacks in educational achievement, and providing the conditions for job insecurity coupled with the re-emergence of child labour and exploitation.”
The Council of Europe represents 47 countries and is responsible for the European Court of Human Rights, which enforces the European Convention on Human Rights.
In 2012 alone, the European Committee of Social Rights (ECSR) found 13 countries in breach of their duty under Article 1(1) of the revised European Social Charter to pursue full employment policies. The pointed to the fact that over half of all young people are officially unemployed in Spain, Portugal and Greece, with little improvement expected until 2016.
Wage rights Worker protection, including the right to fair pay, collective bargaining and health and safety rights have been violated as a matter of policy. They cite Spain where the minimum wage is below what the European Social Charter says is necessary to guarantee a decent standard of living.
In Greece, the International Labour Organization reports an “important deficit of social dialogue” in the way workers rights are being violated.
Because of high unemployment, cuts in social services and regressive tax measures poverty has increased. In 2011, the percentage of people in the EU at risk of poverty or social exclusion reached 24.2%
Social security rights are being violated because social security systems have been pushed to the limit because of massive unemployment. The so called “reforms” of the pension systems have cut the benefits for old pensioners. In Greece the European Committee of Social Rights observed that pension reform measures would “risk bringing about a large-scale pauperi[z]ation of a significant segment of the population.” It said the government had failed to conduct the minimum level of research and analysis on the effects of the austerity measures.
The fact that people are being thrown out of their homes because of non payment of mortgages and rent has led to a dramatic increase in homelessness. Since 2007, homelessness has increased in 15 of the 21 countries monitored by national experts. This is the case particularly in Greece, Ireland, Italy, Portugal, Spain and the UK. New groups of homeless have emerged, with homelessness spreading among migrants, young people, women and families.
The right to food is being violated by austerity measures have led to cuts in food subsidies, not to mention unemployment and the rest. This has lead to the reduction in the consumption of staple foods.
Even the right to water is being violated because as a condition for international assistance from the EC, ECB and IMF, such as new fees for domestic water use have been introduced in Ireland and demands that Greece privatize its publicly owned water companies.
The right to education is being violated by the cuts to the education budgets, also demanded by the Troika and EU austerity policies. Spain cut its education budget by 21.4 percent between 2011 and 2012 and Estonia by 10% between 2008 and 2009. Similar cuts have been made in Greece, Portugal and other countries.
The right to health care is being violated on a wholesale basis as the EC, ECB and IMF have demanded healthcare cuts as a conditionality. Greece and other countries have been told to cut to health care so it does not exceed 6 percent of GDP. For Greece this is cutting it from 10 percent. Countries, including Greece have increased the out-of-pocket fees despite as a means of cutting the use of health services and worsening health outcomes for both high-risk and low-income patients. This has led to a deterioration of mental health, and in increase in substance abuse and suicide.
Europeans who have adopted the policy of Empire, continue to propose the deadly policy of Austerity, wherever they are, or whether or not they remain in political office.
Sarkozy Says Ibero-Americans Must Embrace Rotting EU Corpse
Like a salesman peddling cemetery plots, former French President Nicholas Sarkozy told an audience of businessmen in Buenos Aires on Nov. 27 that Argentina, and the Common Market of the South (Mercosur), can guarantee a bright future for themselves by embracing the rotting corpse of the European Union through a free-trade agreement.
Negotiations for a Mercosur-EU free-trade agreement have been stalled for years, due in part to Argentina’s objections to the deal’s sovereignty-busting demands. The EU complains that Argentina is “too protectionist.”
At a time when Ukraine and Eastern Europe are jumping off the EU’s sinking Titanic, the pompous Sarkozy, who traveled with a large entourage of security personnel, assistants, hairdressers, etc., said that Mercosur needs “greater economic opening to a globalized world.” Mercosur “isn’t integrated,” he complained. “It doesn’t speak with one voice.” He then attacked Argentina for putting up “imaginary barriers” to its Ibero- American neighbors — meaning that it isn’t as willing as Brazil or Uruguay to bend to the EU’s demands.
In an outrageous meddling in Argentina’s internal affairs, the former French President warned that President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner should really be concerned with “competitiveness,” rather than monetary policy, by which he meant her use of exchange controls to protect against speculation and capital flight. “I don’t think exchange controls are the answer to everything,” he pontificated.
Ignoring the fact that Europe is being wiped off the map by the Troika’s murderous austerity dictates, Sarkozy sputtered that “it’s time for Argentina to decide whether in 40 years it will be one of the great powers or whether it will disappear from the map.” He also insisted that Argentina could do much better, were it to ally with the free-trade agreement known as the “Pacific Alliance” made up of Colombia, Chile, Peru, and Mexico, which was put in place precisely as an alternative to the Mercosur customs union whose existence is an irritant to the Anglo-Dutch crowd.
There is an alternative, however. Liliana Gorini spoke on Italian radio about several of the political movements in Europe that are directly attacking this policy of murder, as well as identifying the solution.
Movisol Briefs Radio Padania on BüSo Convention and Glass-Steagall Campaign
Liliana Gorini, chairwoman of Movisol and LaRouche spokeswoman in Italy, was interviewed on December 4th by Roberto Ortelli on Radio Padania. Host Ortelli was just back from a conference at the European Parliament in Brussels with anti-euro politicians Magdi Allam and Bagnai, and made an intelligent observation on it: that the seat of the European Parliament shows no cultural reference whatsoever.
“They do it on purpose,” Gorini answered. “If the purpose is abolishing national sovereignty, cultural references, such as the Italian Renaissance or the German classics, are only an obstacle.”
During the conference in Brussels, Ortelli had asked the speakers whether the euro system was not merely a “mistake” but also a “wanted one,” as Jacques Attali had admitted; the speakers, of course, did not answer his question. Gorini did supply an answer, reminding listeners of what Lyndon LaRouche had repeated for years, starting with the “controlled disintegration” of the euro system and Obamacare: “the intention of the British Empire and its oligarchical system, expressed in the euro, is that of murdering people and reducing the population from 7 billion to 1 billion people.”
She briefed listeners on the convention of the BüSo party in Germany, held at the same time as that conference in Brussels, and the list of 35 candidates for the European Parliament on an opposition platform: Glass-Steagall, exit from the euro, the Eurasian Land-Bridge; and she mentioned in this context also the strategic importance of events in Ukraine, which might lead to a change in Germany, Austria, Switzerland, and “hopefully also Italy, if our campaign for Glass-Steagall continues.”