|Economics & Politics|
|ON March 24 the Portuguese
prime minister, Jose Socrates,
resigned after all the opposition
parties rejected his austerity
plan, which included slashing
pensions by more than €1,500 a
month and more cuts in tax benefits.
His government´s collapse triggered an
election, which could not take place for
another two months. During the interim
Socrates stayed on as acting prime
minister and reached an agreement
with the European Union and the
International Monetary Fund for a
€78bn bailout. The terms? Almost
exactly the same as those proposed by
him and rejected by the Portuguese
parliament six weeks earlier.
When the elections finally took place
the political class could sense a certain
degree of cynicism. The Portuguese
president, Anibal Cavaco Silva, warned
voters they could not complain about
|CASH CON BY
|WATCHING the evolution
of economic discussion
Washington over the
past couple of years
has been a disheartening experience.
Month by month, the discourse
has gotten more primitive;
with stunning speed, the lessons
of the 2008 financial crisis have
been forgotten, and the very ideas
that got us into the crisis - regulation
is always bad, what´s good
for the bankers is good for
America, tax cuts are the universal
elixir - have regained their
And now trickle-down economics
- specifically, the idea that
anything that increases corporate
profits is good for the economy -
is making a comeback.
On the face of it, this seems
bizarre. Over the past two years
profits have soared while employment
has remained disastrously
high. Why should anyone believe
that handing even more money to
corporations, no strings...
Ties with US set to grow amid challenges: Gilani
DPA ISLAMABAD THE friendly relations between Pakistan and the US will continue to grow in diverse fields despite challenges, said Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani in Islamabad.
“All relationships go through challenging times.
The real challenge is to convert them into opportunities for the mutual benefit of our two countries and people,” he said at a function held at the US embassy in Islamabad on Monday to mark the 236th anniversary of the Declaration of Independence.
“This is the real test of the strength of any relationship.
It is in this spirit that our two governments remain engaged in working together to further strengthen our ties,” he added.
Gilani said the values of freedom, democracy and human rights have inspired millions of people and scores of nations around the world.
“It is also a bond that unites our two nations.
As we embarked on our own struggle for independence in the early decades of the last century, we too yearned to create a homeland where the values of democracy, of dignity and of equality of human beings would thrive and reign supreme,” the APP news agency quoted Gilani as saying.
“We remain steadfast in our resolve to root out the twin menaces of terrorism and extremism.
Our democratic government, in fact, took ownership of this war and has united the entire nation to wipe out this scourge,” he added.
He said the strategic dialogue between the two countries provides a framework for further strengthening the bilateral ties in the areas energy, agriculture, defence, information technology, women empowerment, trade and financial issues, education and health, among others.
Gilani also said that Pakistan believes in peaceful coexistence in the region.
Gilani on Monday told Gul Haneef, chairman of Institute of Strategic Studies, that Pakistan was a responsible state.
He said the institute should provide researched material to the government on foreign policy issues.