The bailouts of the four "PIGS" countries (Portugal, Ireland, Greece, and Spain) continues apace within the European Union. Only days after grim news in bankrupt Greece — rising bond rates, a significantly underestimated debt-to-GDP ratio, and a looming nationwide union strike to protest "austerity" measures — Portugal has received a €78 billion loan from the EU.
The four European Union members known together as PIGS (Portugal, Ireland, Greece, and Spain) are those countries whose general irresponsibility and massive government overspending has been enough to drive down the value of the euro as the interest rates on their government bonds are pushed to unsustainable levels. Last year the financial collapses in these countries, especially Greece, caused the euro to plummet 15 percent in just the first six months of the year.
A Muslim beauty who bared all for Playboy may well be the next victim of an honor killing in Germany, if orthodox Muslims get their way.
Sila Şahin, a Turkish knock-out and soap-opera star who shed her clothes for pornographer Hugh Hefner's German edition of Playboy, is under fire from those calling her a "whore" and a "western slut" and who believe she must die.
Europe is in a long meltdown. The financial crisis is getting a great deal of the attention connected with this meltdown. Greece, Portugal, and Ireland have public debt ratios to GDP and to government revenues that are scaring off bond purchasers and pushing up the interest paid on government bonds. The selfishness of Europeans (and Americans) who are demanding that the government (i.e. hardworking taxpayers) fund huge packages of social welfare benefits and public employee pensions is a Ponzi scheme that had to fall someday, and that day appears now.
A clinic in the United Kingdom that specializes in treating individuals suffering from “Gender Identity Disorder” (GID) has been given approval by the country’s National Research Ethics Service to prescribe a puberty-blocking drug to children as young as 12 who say they are confused about whether they are male or female.
The war has begun over what to do with the Tunisian migrants who flooded Italy, which country then threatened to scatter them across Europe. Last week, France blocked a train carrying the Africans at its border with Italy, which prompted an immediate protest from the latter.
What to do with the 25,000 migrants who fled Tunisia after its government fell, and then flooded the Italian isle of Lampedusa, has been a matter of some concern since the "biblical exodus," as officials termed it, began in January.
In Great Britain, in the days prior to the invasion of Iraq, government ministers and oil industry executives spoke about how best to exploit the rich oil reserves in that country, according to an article in the UK newspaper The Independent.
The paper reports that there were at least five meetings among representatives of BP, Shell, and the British government, taking place near the end of 2002. The invasion of Iraq began on March 20, 2003.
The so-called London Taliban is attempting to impose Sharia law by threatening homosexuals and women who don’t know wear Muslim garb with violence.
The city’s Daily Mail newspaper, in yet another installment of its episodic chronicle of Islam’s march through Britain and its institutions, reports that Muslims are harassing women who refuse to wear Islamic headgear, the hijab, or even worse, the suffocating burqa. Neighborhoods are being declared “gay free” zones.
Finland is a curious blend of statist socialism and national independence. Its politics do not always fit easily into American thinking. No one would call the small country a socially conservative nation. Religious belief is weak, and vices such as illegitimacy, alcoholism, and pornography are shockingly more prevalent than in its cousins — Sweden, Denmark, Norway, and Iceland.
Most Americans — blessed with an inimitable Constitution written by men of great character and wisdom who understood the profound importance of human liberty — take freedom of expression for granted. So it sometimes surprises them to learn that their notion of free speech and free press is exceptional in the world.