Friday, December 27, 2013

"EU citizenship for sale"

"Tourism to Europe? There is no need to travel - just wire 650,000 euro and you become an official citizen of the European Union. Reside in Germany, the UK - anywhere you like. No qualification needed - just some money. No one has to know where your money comes from.

A plan, which was approved in Malta [last month] is expected to...give those who want to purchase a Malta EU passport the right to reside in any of the other 27 member states. They will even be eligible to become members of the European Parliament.

Malta is selling EU passports for 650,000 euro (US$875,000) as part of a law passed in order to bring in cash and investment. It comes with the benefits of EU membership, including the right to reside and work in the 28-member bloc.

The island country, which has a population of 452,000, is a member of the EU and the Schengen borderless travel area, and has a visa waiver agreement with the US.

The country’s prime minister, Joseph Muscat, said the plan is expected to attract “high value” individuals from around the world who can then invest in the island. Muscat estimated that 45 potential applicants would raise the country around 30 million euro."

Read more from source here.

Friday, December 20, 2013

How should we take on the problem of unequal pay in Europe?

Tonight I was involved in an online discussion (through Global Voices) about “How we should we take on pay inequality across Europe.”

The inhumane levels of poverty and joblessness in Catalunya, Spain, and wider Europe demand that more is done to combat these social ills, and now...

"A movement to give every citizen “unconditional basic income”—no work required—is gathering speed in Europe.

For the last 11 months, the European Citizens’ Initiative (ECI) has been spearheading a one-year campaign to gather a million signatures that support "Unconditional Basic Income (UBI)" for all Europeans.

The ECI wants everyone to have a basic, guaranteed wage, which is enough to cover day-to-day expenses.

If they collect one million signatures reaching the minimum requirement from at least 7 European Union (EU) member countries by January 14 2014, the European Commission will have to examine their initiative and arrange for a public hearing at the European Parliament.

In the short term, they want to do some “pilot-studies” and examine different models of UBI.
In the long run, their objective is to offer to each person in the EU the unconditional right as an individual, to have their material needs met to ensure a life of dignity by the introduction of the UBI.

The Basic Income proposal is being presented by citizens from 15 EU member states (Austria, Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Poland, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, United Kingdom)."


Saturday, December 14, 2013

"Women of Spain, go back to the bad old days!"

Sometimes I get the sense that I am living in a past era...

A how-to manual called Marry and Submit Yourself (Casate y se sumisa) is proving a hit in Spain...

It is aimed at newly-wed women - teaching them to accept criticism of their cooking or housekeeping, and to learn to keep the peace in a marital home. 
The author, Costanza Miriano [has said] that her book is not about women being doormats, but being supportive.

Source: here.

Friday, December 6, 2013

"The Remade Parent" now available

I am extremely happy to say that my new non-fiction book is finally now available as a Kindle e-book (at only $4.82.) 

It includes a chapter looking at parenting in Spain.

The print-on-demand soft-back version will soon also be for sale...