|The Portrait's Box by Ridolfo Ghirlandaio|
"In politics nothing is contemptible" - Benjamin Disraeli
The United States of America is interested in building stronger ties with India (as part of its strategy for the Asia-Pacific Region). India has, for years, been distrustful of America because of its relationship with Pakistan (Washington, among other things, used to sell weapons to Islamabad; which represented a problem to New Delhi given the tense relationship between the two neighbours) and because leftist elements have always been wary of dealing with a ferocious anti-left expansionary US. Moreover, India wants to avoid being used by the US to counter a ferocious expansionary China and other friends in the Middle East.
However, India has been slowly opening up more to the US: it is engaging in military exercises with it (an engagement that started after the 2004 Tsunami) and it is buying military assets from Washington. Furthermore, a year ago the Indian parliament finally voted in favour of opening its retailing market to US (and other foreign) companies - prior to January 2012 India didn't allow foreign direct investment in retailing.
In January 2012 President Obama admitted, to the public, that the US was conducting drone attacks against Pakistan (which began in 2004).
India, Pakistan is no longer a US priority: let's do business.
"To tax the community for the advantage of a class is not protection: it is plunder" - idem
Speaking of France: the Constitutional Council declared that a 75% income tax is unconstitutional, since it violates the Principle of Fiscal Equality (how ironic). Well, President Hollande, in his New Year Speech, vowed to restructure the law and keep its objective of plundering and annoying the wealthier for symbolic reasons.
Hollande seems to suffer from the Louis XIV syndrome (every morning he must look at himself, in the mirror, and utter "L'état c'est moi!"). Under his tenure, France will have a new national motto: Liberté, Emmerdité, Fraternité!
Portugal, according to an IMF Report, is another country that blatantly breaches the principle of equality. Quick example: public servants work less hours, less years, than those working for the private sector and yet get a pension three times higher in average - no wonder leftist MPs are against cutting public spending (they are protecting their own pension and benefits in detriment of the rights of those who work in the private sector).
Question: doesn't the above example constitute a violation of the 13th article (Principle of Equality) of the Portuguese Constitution "1. All citizens have the same social dignity and all are the same under the law; 2. No one can be privileged, benefited, prejudiced, deprived of any right or exempt of any duty for reasons of ascendancy, gender, race, language, territory of origin, religion, political or ideological convictions, education, economic situation, social condition or sexual orientation"?
The Portuguese government commissioned the mentioned report (which is highly commendable) but will it have the political fortitude to undertake the recommended reforms?
Sua Cuique Persona...to each its own mask...