The Reasoned Review

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Posts Tagged ‘france

Dirty Work

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It looks as though we’re trolling the Europeans for help on our Afghan problem. You know, the one that presents an “existential threat” to the United States and all? But I don’t think they’re biting this time.

From the Times:

NATO members and other foreign allies have expressed reluctance to send more soldiers because of the Afghan war’s growing unpopularity in their countries and increasing concerns over corruption in President Hamid Karzai’s government.

Silly NATO! When will they realize that such trivial matters as “public opinion” and “corruption” have no place when discussing vital defense strategy? Why can’t they take the United States’ example on this? The US, after all, doesn’t let a little thing like a widespread electoral fraud or massive heroin production by the winners of said fraud affect their decision. We must stay the course, after all!

Later they say that:

It remains unclear whether several thousand NATO and other foreign troops are really the equal of a similarly sized American force in terms of military capacity. Some countries may continue to restrict how their forces may be employed. In addition, a force that is cobbled together from too many nations — a few hundred here and a thousand there — might not have the unit cohesion of an American force, military analysts said.

Yeah, who needs ’em! The “military analysts” are right – nobody has the “unit cohesion” of a good ol’ red-blooded American soldier! It looks like no one at the Times has ever heard of a thing called “sour grapes”.

Written by pavanvan

November 26, 2009 at 4:12 pm

The Pernicious Bonus

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The G-20 economies are set to meet in Pittsburgh in three weeks to discuss various matters, among the most divisive of which stand the obscene “bonuses” awarded to the executives of our once-failing financial institutions.

What the Europeans want, according to The Times, are “‘global standards on pay structure, emphasizing long-term results in awarding pay and urging provisions to take back bonuses if bank profits tumble”, along with “limits on guaranteed bonuses”.

Reasonable enough. However, according to an anonymous source from The Times,  the US is reluctant to accede to such requests (in essence, allowing bankers unlimited pay completely divorced from performance), for the following reason:

American counterparts were seeking to sidestep the bonus issue out of fear the White House could be accused of yielding too easily to European pressure, which might endanger progress on health care reform.”

A likely story. It would be useful to contrast The Times’ coverage with that of Al-Jazeera, who wrote a similar story on the upcoming G-20 summit, but with a far different interpretation. To them, US reluctance to restrain the scandalous pay of its reckless bankers is attributable to its desire “to protect the status of Wall Street and the City of London as the world’s leading financial centers“.

Now that seems to make a bit more sense.

As an addendum, I would like to again point my readers to the Institute for Policy Studies report which informs us that the top five executives at the 20 banks that received the most federal bailout funds received an average of $32 Million in annual personal compensation.

Written by pavanvan

September 5, 2009 at 8:59 pm