The Welfare State: a fraud

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In May 2010, our then President Zapatero announced in sheer panic (but, like The Joker, without losing his everlasting smile) that pensions would be frozen for one year without being adjusted for the CPI, thereby losing purchasing power. Foreign leaders, it seems, warned him of the importance of basic algebra if an immediate default was …

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Expropriate it!

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A few years ago, the late Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez made one of his famous propaganda gestures in front of the TV cameras. Walking beside the mayor of Caracas and cloyingly applauded by the usual cohort of smiling followers, Chavez demanded details about the ownership of the buildings sitting on both sides of the street …

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Deficit and public debt in Spain: where’s the success?

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The great philosopher George Santayana wrote a memorable sentence:  “Skepticism is the chastity of the intellect, and it is shameful to surrender it too soon or to the first comer”.  Spain’s 2012 budget deficit figures have recently been published and everyone seems cheerful about them, not least the government. Should we yield to this fiesta …

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The pathology of power

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“Power tends to corrupt”. This famous sentence written by the Catholic British historian Lord Acton is often quoted but seldom understood. Today, the collective imagination pictures corruption in a very narrow and childish way, restricted to the customary envelope discreetly delivered beneath the table. However, the corrosive effect of power on the human being embraces …

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Systemic corruption

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By its very nature, power tends to destroy the morals and judgment of human beings. When man thinks he is God, he soon turns into a tyrant and creates his own Tree of Good and Evil, changing it as he sees fit. Of course, power’s destructive potential affects men in different degrees depending on character, …

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Still believing in GDP?

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When the Greek philosopher Plato wrote the “Allegory of the Cave” 2,400 years ago, he was surely thinking about Keynesian economists (that is to say, nearly all economists): a group of men, chained to their convictions, confusing reality with the shadows that the light of real life projects on the wall of their own cave. …

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