Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
Where's the "good news"?

It might be good news if the Centre for European Reform managed to swear off endlessly recycling neoliberal clichés like small, nimble newcomer, raise their game, cope with competition, the gap in living standards with the US, flexible labour markets, entrepreneurship, and refrain from the usual ideological framing such as:

  • The upturn was partly cyclical (perhaps, but why is this never said of the Anglo-Saxon economies?)
  • it was also the result of the reforms to product and labour markets (evidence for this? what reforms? Germany reducing wages to gain a competitive edge would be an example?)
  • (NL) the only EU country that combines high employment with high productivity (high employment thanks to a much higher rate of part-time work than any other EU country)
  • The EU needs to find a compromise on `unbundling' quickly, and move on to building a low-carbon economy (liberalising energy markets will encourage short-term-profit investment in gas and coal, the antithesis of the second aim set out)
  • In many EU countries, one in five youngsters is looking for a job (a standard propaganda lie - France has a 15-24 unemployment rate around 20% while the UK has half of that, yet there are roughly the same numbers of jobseekers for a similar population in each country; see 1 here and 2 here and 3 here for explanations of this and other deliberately-maintained misconceptions about labour statistics)
  • narrow focus on the overall level of research and development spending (attempt to demonise public investment in research).

You might be right, though, that the scorecard could help us see where our own respective governments are headed. With a hope it's not where CER wants to take us... :-)  
by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Fri Mar 14th, 2008 at 01:24:09 PM EST

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