Monday, July 23, 2018

The Portuguese Way

I've written about this before but a big front page article in the New York Times business section is a good excuse to right about it again. Portugal, my ancestral homeland, besides begin a great place in general, has taken the lead in showing the left how to properly deal with the European crisis. And the results have been excellent. Here's the story:
"[W]hen Europe’s debt crisis struck, [t]he economy crumbled, wages were cut, and unemployment doubled. The government in Lisbon had to accept a humiliating international bailout.
But as the misery deepened, Portugal took a daring stand: In 2015, it cast aside the harshest austerity measures its European creditors had imposed, igniting a virtuous cycle that put its economy back on a path to growth. The country reversed cuts to wages, pensions and social security, and offered incentives to businesses.
The government’s U-turn, and willingness to spend, had a powerful effect. Creditors railed against the move, but the gloom that had gripped the nation through years of belt-tightening began to lift. Business confidence rebounded. Production and exports began to take off....
At a time of mounting uncertainty in Europe, Portugal has defied critics who have insisted on austerity as the answer to the Continent’s economic and financial crisis. While countries from Greece to Ireland — and for a stretch, Portugal itself — toed the line, Lisbon resisted, helping to stoke a revival that drove economic growth last year to its highest level in a decade.
The renewal is visible just about everywhere. Hotels, restaurants and shops have opened in droves, fueled by a tourism surge that has helped cut unemployment in half. In the Beato district of Lisbon, a mega-campus for start-ups rises from the rubble of a derelict military factory. Bosch, Google and Mercedes-Benz recently opened offices and digital research centers here, collectively employing thousands....
“What happened in Portugal shows that too much austerity deepens a recession, and creates a vicious circle,” Prime Minister António Costa said in an interview. “We devised an alternative to austerity, focusing on higher growth, and more and better jobs.”
Voters ushered Mr. Costa, a center-left leader, into power in late 2015 after he promised to reverse cuts to their income, which the previous government had approved to reduce Portugal’s high deficit under the terms of an international bailout of 78 billion euros, or $90 billion. Mr. Costa formed an unusual alliance with Communist and radical-left parties, which had been shut out of power since the end of Portugal’s dictatorship in 1974. They united with the goal of beating back some of the toughest aspects of austerity, while balancing the books to meet eurozone rules.
The government raised public sector salaries, the minimum wage and pensions and even restored the amount of vacation days to prebailout levels over objections from creditors like Germany and the International Monetary Fund. Incentives to stimulate business included development subsidies, tax credits and funding for small and midsize companies."
Got it? Left unity + anti-austerity + growth = success. Yes, I know things are not perfect there and yes, yes [insert special circumstance that, in your view, would make this approach work in Portugal but nowhere else]. But it is a bit of a mystery why the Portuguese Way hasn't been embraced by more on the European left. I guess they're not tired of losing yet!
Read the whole article. Great pix, especially the first one of Porto--beautiful city!
About this article
NYTIMES.COM
At a time of mounting uncertainty in Europe, the country has defied critics who insisted on austerity as the answer to the Continent’s economic and financial crisis.

7 comments:

  1. It is nice to see social progress done right!
    (BTW: "besides begin a great place" -> "besides being a great place")

    ReplyDelete
  2. I was very surprised with this post, the writer really impressed me and helped me understand many things needed, I need to acquire it and change to be able to succeed in life, thanks a lot
    currency converter box online, currency converter box free, best autoketing app

    ReplyDelete
  3. I accidentally saw your post and it attracted me from the first few seconds, it was excellent, hope you have more successful posts.
    Stickman Warriors games to play, Cooking Christmas Traditional Food unblocked, Wheelie Challenge games for school kids

    ReplyDelete
  4. I like this post because it contains a lot of useful information to read, maybe everyone will like me.
    free kizi Games, pbs Games for boys, jogos friv gratis

    ReplyDelete

  5. food games free
    play basketball games
    soccer games play
    like this post because it contains a lot of useful information to read, maybe everyone will like me.

    ReplyDelete
  6. friv Games
    jogo io
    2player games
    Pretty good post. I just stumbled upon your blog and wanted to say that I have really enjoyed reading your blog posts. Any way I'll be subscribing to your feed and I hope you post again soon. Big thanks for the useful info.

    ReplyDelete
  7. I am just astonished to see just how good of an article this is. I’ll apt to be again to study much more, thank you that information.
    miniclip games for free,
    a10 games 2019,
    Jogo para criança

    ReplyDelete