Showing posts from 2015

Remember Paris!

  Indeed, huge majority of Muslims are not terrorists. But majority of perpetrators of terrorist acts in Europe since 2001 are Muslims. That fifteen million European Muslims generate more terrorist – including the thousands that travel to join ISIS – than half a billion of Europeans shows that their   integration in Europe, especially in France, is failing .   What can’t Europe do? Campaigns in Afghanistan and Iraq did achieve little but regrouping of radical Islamists into a different organization. Bombing the Middle East to stone age will not achieve much either.  We should stop the migration flows and improve the border controls.  This would make sense at least until we learn how to better integrate Muslims into our societies. But what about all those who  already are in Europe?  Again, I do not believe much can be achieved by violence. Fencing off Muslim ghettos or sending young jobless people to labor camps is unjust, inhumane and stupid. Policing and security checks are just the

Internet after Net Neutrality Regulation: The best is yet to come

  People argue. Some argue to prove that they are right. Others argue to make things right. For the time being, the argument about net neutrality is over. The Regulation does not go neutral all the way, but it would be  wrong to claim that this was a defeat for net neutrality   just for the sake of proving how right the advocates of harder net neutrality provisions were. In the days after, the Internet is full of panicky messages how terrible the Internet is going to become. How after the passing of the Regulation company such-and-such will now act so-and-so and this would be just terrible for everyone. The first thing to be said is that if the Regulation was rejected, company such-and-such could be doing so-and-so anyway. As they were able to do so before Tuesday. With the exception of The Netherlands and Slovenia,  protection of net neutrality in Europe is now stronger, not weaker . From here onward there are two options. 1) Activists can use the argument of company such-and-such as

Slovenia: Bad Bank Going Badder

  In about tweet: Slovenia created a “bad bank” to solve the banking crisis. It hired Scandinavians to run it independently of old boys’ networks. They got too independent and were sacked. As a measure for saving its failing banking sector,  Slovenia in 2013 established a “bad bank” , officially called  Bank Assets Management Company  (BAMC). The BAMC purchased some 1.6B€ worth of non-performing assets from the banks which were also recapitalized by the government with some 4B€. Total cost of the operation is over 5.5B€ which is a lot of taxpayer money for a country with a population of only 2 million. In 2013 Slovenian government  hired few foreigners – independent of the local business milieu – to manage BAMC . Their independence proved unpleasant, to say the least. The next government lowered their salaries mid-term, hoping they would quit. They did not. Possibly they found other means to remunerate their work. Possibly not. Then BAMC was investigated by the local Court of Audit and

Net-neutrality in the Times of Crisis

In the context of the Telecoms Single Market (TSM) package the European Council and the European Parliament are revisiting the issue of net neutrality. Net neutrality is a principle of internet traffic management that says that   all internet traffic should be treated equally, regardless of the content, sender or receiver . As responsible minister I introduced the net neutrality principle into the Slovenian Telecommunications Act in 2012, making Slovenia the second EU member state to  guarantee the Internet to remain an open and equal opportunity technology . Road to serfdom Neutrality is a principle used in public roads, for example, where the same speed limits apply to rich and poor, and same fees are charged weather a lorry is carrying computers or gravel. We do not believe that the road administration should be getting a cut of the profit that is made by those that transport goods from one end of Europe to the other. Because high priced Gucci bags are on a truck that passes under t

More Hayek, less Schumpeter in European digital policies

The Google probe seems to prove that the EU is way too focused on fighting old wars. However, if it wants to put in place a system where innovation thrives it must care less for the existing IT industry and do more for those that do not exist yet. Already during the early 1990s – in the  Bangemann Report  – the information and communication technologies (ICTs) have been politically understood as a strategic development priority of the European Union. ICTs were high on the agenda of the Lisbon Strategy whose goal was “to make Europe the most competitive and dynamic knowledge based economy in the world”. In the Europe 2020 Strategy, the Digital Agenda for Europe is one of the seven flagship projects. Its overall aim is “to deliver sustainable economic and social benefits from a digital single market based on fast and ultra fast internet and interoperable applications.”     Schumpeter: Profit is result of innovation European policies in the field of innovation are based on the Schumpeteri

Greece: its not about the austerity

  Greek elections were not about the end of austerity and debt-write off. This was just an election narrative that captured the hearts of the Greek electorate and, surprisingly, dazzled large majority of the pundits, commentators and economists in Europe. As good as it gets As financial analysts are explaining, countries like Italy, Spain, and Portugal are spending larger share of their GDP to service their official debt than Greece. Much of the debt has already been written off or “hair cut”, a lot has been reprogrammed, postponed, the interest rates on the European loans are quite small. The troika is not requiring any substantial new austerity measures anyway. Much of what Syriza claims it wants has been done already. In the  words of Daniel Gros : “… in the end, the difference between a government that has never made good on its promises to pay and a government that promises not to pay might not be that large.” If not much will change with respect to debt and austerity, what was th