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Thoughts on contemporary issues from a political economist.

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Lawrence Lessig: We the People, and the Republic we must reclaim

Lawrence Lessig: We the People, and the Republic we must reclaim

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Non-ending European marvels

So the dice have rolled. An agricultural economist runs Euro monetary policy. A “you are jealous of me, the best pupil in class” finance minister runs the Euro. And a flock of I-can’t-run-a-corner-shop heads of government pretend to run EU member-states. So much so for the open-government free-market democracy European ideals. Jean Monnet must be turning in his grave….

European realities…

(c) Los Angeles Times, 2012

Hellenic Republic Public Debt Bulletin, June 2012

The latest public debt data for Greece (June 2012 bulletin) have just been released.

Greek central government debt reached €303.527 bn in late June, registering a quarterly increase of 8.3% over the March 2012 figure which stood at €280.3 bn. The underlying cause being additional EFSF and IMF loans in the context of the second €130 bn loan agreement.

Support mechanism loans stood at €148.83 bn end-June, compared to €111.94 bn in March. They break down to €25 bn given to the Greek Financial Stability Fund in the first round of domestic major bank recapitalization, €7.2 bn to cover bond maturities excluded from this year’s debt haircut and €1 bn to cover primary deficit needs.

In the second quarter of the year the Greek government proceeded with a total of 6 issues of Treasury bills, through which it requested €6.5 bn and secured funds totaling €10 bn at comparable rates of interest.

Follow the link to view detailed data in GR and EN.

Pre-election (June 17, 2012) comment…

Αυγη 3.6.2012

The 2012 Transit of Venus

On June 5th, 2012, Venus will transit the face of the sun in an event of both historical and observational importance.

More at the NASA Science page.

Live transit webcast here   [view schedule (Hawaiian time – UTC/GMT -10)].

Calculate your location transit times here.

The Transit of Venus on Wikipedia.

Link

The future of the European Union: The choice

The future of the European Union: The choice

A sound and pragmatic proposal by The Economist newspaper to address Europe’s immediate needs.

Hellenic Republic Public Debt Bulletin, March 2012

The latest public debt data for Greece (March 2012 bulletin) have just been released.

Public debt stood at €280bn (136% of GDP) during the first quarter of 2012 (March 31), falling from €368bn (179% of GDP) at the end of 2011, as a result of the successful implementation of the first phase of PSI.

As stated in the Public Debt Bulletin, published Monday, €177.3bn of nominal debt has been written-off on completion of the first phase of PSI on March 12, 2012 and new bonds to a nominal value of €55.8bn have been issued with maturities ranging from eleven to 30 years.

Follow the link in EN or GR to view detailed data.

Annular solar eclipse of May 20, 2012

Tulip Fields in the Norfolk Countryside

theuklandscape

Throughout April I made three or four visits to two Tulip fields in the Norfolk countryside (UK), this year was apparently a really good year for the Tulips because of all the rain we had here. The rain made shooting a little difficult as I couldn’t always get the conditions I wanted  and the window for opportunity is quite small as the flowers are soon de-headed to allow more of the energy to go into the bulbs. Here are a few of my favourite images from the shoots.

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