GW: Basically the EUSSR is spending more money than [[[they]]] have got – always have – the accounts are unaudited – & unfortunately most of the money has gone into various blackholes. A good bit of it goes on keeping Brussels Bureaucrats in an opulent lifestyle while the tax payers struggle. I talked with a colleague who was in Brussels on Brexit evening & he said that the whole place was rather depressing. The architecture was especially unattractive but opulent & that very nearby there was a slum like district – cheek to jowl with the EU Parliament monstrosity???? He assumed that was where the ”staff” were housed – skivvies who support the various Bureaucratic Bar Stewards higher up the food chain who have their own wineries etc – Verhofstadt & Co – I can’t verify because my trip there was just to the bijoux tourist bits.
Given the reaction of some parts of the media, one could be forgiven for assuming that Europe and the rest of the Western world has become besieged by burqa-clad women. The “fear” is now so rife that empty bus seats in Norway were mistaken for a group of women wearing the burqa.
Meanwhile, in a much derided stunt in Australia, far right leader Pauline Hanson wore a full-face covering burqa into the senate chamber. Hanson’s aim was to prohibit Muslim women from covering their faces and to get the burqa banned in the country.
To look at it, the burqa is simply a veil which covers the body and face – and yet it is also sometimes associated with oppression, terrorism, and extreme religious beliefs. Some burqas only have a mesh screen for the wearer to see through. The niqab, on the other hand, is a face veil worn with a headscarf which leaves the eyes uncovered, while the hijab is a scarf which covers the head and neck. In Europe, the term “burqa” is used to refer to women who wear robes to cover the body and face, but their eyes may be left uncovered, as seen in the main image of this article.
Germans, Danes and Belgians pay the most for their electricity in Europe, followed by households on the Iberian peninsula, according to data from Eurostat.
In Germany and Denmark 100 kilowatt-hours of electricity costs on average €30.5, compared with prices as low as €6.60 in Serbia. One kilowatt hour is about enough to watch TV for around 3 hours or to run a washing machine for one cycle.
When the figures are adjusted to take into account different spending power across the countries, Germany retains the top spot although Portugal climbs into second place.
An update, Catalan President Puigdemont and four members of his government have now handed themselves into the Belgium Police. A judge by tomorrow will decide if the European Arrest Warrants issued by the Spanish courts earlier this week , will be abided by.
On Thursday, a judge from Spain’s National Court, Carmen Lamela, sent 8 members of the Catalan government to jail for rebellion, sedition, and misuse of public funds without any evidence. As expected, the attorney general had requested their immediate imprisonment without bail and the judge approved.
Carmen Lamela is the same judge who had already sent to prison the civil rights leaders, Cuixart and Sànchez, two weeks ago, for sedition.
In her order, Judge Lamela said that the imprisonment, pending trial of the 8 Catalan leaders was “appropriate, reasonable and proportional.” She based her decision on their flight risk, taking into account the “spending power of the accused which would allow them to abandon the territory”. She also mentioned that other ministers and Catalonia’s President Puigdemont had already abandoned the country to prevent a trial in Spain.
In fact, she describes the government of Catalonia as…
Carles Puigdemont says he’ll cooperate with Belgian courts
Ousted Catalan president, accused of sedition over independence campaign, brands Spanish authorities ‘extremely barbaric.’
Ousted Catalan President Carles Puigdemont said Friday he would cooperate with the Belgian justice system but could not get a fair trial in Spain, which issued an international warrant for his arrest.
In his first interview since he arrived in Brussels on Monday, Puigdemont also condemned the Spanish authorities as “extremely barbaric” and said he was ready to stand in the December 21 Catalan election called by the central government, which took direct control of Catalonia after the region’s parliament declared independence last week.
“All of us who led this process have to be committed to this cause, especially if there is even the smallest chance that we can all move forward together,” he told Belgian public television station RTBF.
A years-long power struggle between pro-independence leaders in the northeastern region and the Spanish government came to a head last month, when the Catalan administration organized a referendum on secession that had been ruled illegal by Spain’s constitutional court. Madrid deployed police in an effort to stop people taking part in the plebiscite.
Puigdemont declared that his administration, sacked by Madrid as part of its direct-rule measures, remained “the legitimate government of Catalonia.” He said he could campaign in the election from Belgium as “we live in a globalized world.”
The 54-year-old Puigdemont traveled to Belgium on the same that day Spain’s attorney general announced he had been charged with rebellion, sedition and misuse of funds over the regional government’s independence drive.
Puigdemont insisted he had not fled the country but simply traveled to the capital of the European Union to draw global attention to the Catalan crisis. However, he said there was no guarantee of a fair trial back in Spain, where a judge issued an international warrant for his arrest on Friday after he failed to heed a court summons.
“I will not flee from justice. I will go towards justice, but real justice,” Puigdemont said. “I’ve told my lawyers to tell the Belgian justice system that I’m completely available to cooperate.”
“It’s obvious it’s politicized,” Puigdemont said of the Spanish justice system. “The guarantees are not there for a fair, independent trial,” he declared, saying there was “enormous influence of politics over the judiciary in Spain.”
As evidence for his assertion, Puigdemont cited the fact that eight members of his government had been sent to jail pending trial, without the possibility of bail. He said they had been given less than 24 hours’ notice to appear in court and their lawyers had been given only the same amount of time to familiarize themselves with the charges.
“It’s not normal to have the leaders of cultural and pacifist citizens’ groups in prison,” he said. “It’s not normal that all of us risk 30 years in prison — 30 years! — for having kept our commitment to the voters … It’s something extremely barbaric. You can’t talk about democracy if you have to play according to those rules.”
Nevertheless, Puigdemont said he was open to dialogue with Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy.
“Mariano Rajoy has never put dialogue first, “he said. “He has used the police, violence … to get what he wanted. He should try using politics instead.”
Asked if he would request asylum, Puigdemont replied: “I’m not here to ask for political asylum in Belgium, I’m here to defend a legitimate government.”
One of the many reasons that the UK voted for Brexit, Juncker assumes he is more important, influential and a power figure than he is, but within time this could be how the EU becomes. Currently each of the 28 are in most respects are individual countries, but the power mad EU Bureaucrats are ahead of themselves, but give them the opportunity and they will gain and exert this power, in which case the remaining 27 will cease to exist as individual countries. I hope all of the 27 are happy with this forth coming situation.
RANTING Jean-Claude Juncker has been issued with an extraordinary reprimand by a fellow top eurocrat after he ordered Belgium’s government to change its constitution or face serious consequences.
The Regional Parliament of Wallonia had initially refused its consent to the FTA and so delayed the signing.
Now voted the majority of Members of the consent of Belgium to Ceta.
The give in the region was made possible by an additional explanation for the contract.
The regional parliament of the Belgian Walloon Region did take action and the Belgian Government allows the controversial trade agreement Ceta between the EU andCanada to sign. 58 MPs voted by the Belgian news agency Belga for five against. The Socialists and Christian Democrats voted accordingly it together with the opposition Liberals.Green and Communists voted against the permit.
GW: UK tourism has had a bumper season. Lots of Staycationers headed to Cornwall and Scotland while overseas tourists took advantage of the cheaper pound. Many wealthy ones were seen in Edinburgh taking advantage of the good weather and the Scots hospitality. One American stepped out of a taxi in Edinburgh to be met by a 6 foot tall Scots gent perfectly attired in beret with three feathers fixed by a silver thistle pin, traditional kilt and highly polished black brogues. We both smiled in appreciation of this man’s obvious attention to detail. Who said Brexit was a Bad idea? That Economic giant Osborne wasn’t it?
Where’s Terrie May UKC? Doing the MAYpole with the Devil at the Cern Facility?
This is another great piece from Secular Talk’s Kyle Kulinski taking apart some disgusting anti-Muslim comments uttered by the Trumpenfuehrer on ITV’s Good Morning show. Trump had asked rhetorically why Muslims don’t report the terrorists in their communities. Kulinski here demolishes this by showing that they do. He presents these facts:
* In 2013 a Canadian imam prevented a terrorist attack on a train by reporting the terrorists planning the attack to Canada’s finest.
* In 2015 Kenyan Muslims aboard a bus gave their hijabs to the Christian passengers to wear to prevent them from being butchered by al-Shabaab.
* During the French terror attacks last year, a Muslim waiter saved two women from being killed by leaping in front of them when the gunman was firing. He was killed, but the two ladies survived.
* Indonesia’s largest Muslim organisation, comprising 50 million people, has roundly condemned terrorism.