Sunday, June 05, 2005

Major discovery!!!

No, it is not a dinosaur, no it isnt a honest socialist either (that would be some discovery). It is a science, they discovered a new science in the South of Belgium, it is called 'economy'.

Alain Destexhe, a senator in the Brussels Parliament for the liberal party published a book that asks for greater openess, transparency regarding the socalled transfers: the money that flows from Flanders to Wallonia. It is a good start to diagnose the problem, even better would be to solve it. But let us not ask too much.

Instead of reading Alain Destexhe's book it would be much better to read almost anything of Peter Bauer, we are obviously in the business of development economics. For the Dutch readers there is a nice text of Hans Jansen.

Bottom line, what is sold as solidarity between regions is the stimulation of corruption in practice. Destexhe says in Knack magazine that if the Flemish solidarity stops the lifestandard in Wallonia will drop by fifteen to twenty percent. The Marshall plan, which has taken mythical proportions was never more than 5% of GDP of any recipient. Above all the Marshall plan was limited in time. But ofcourse 'solidarité' sounds much nicer than the naked truth. And as always rhetorics are more important than facts.


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