Friday, June 06, 2008

East is the new West (not what you think!)

... or "If Sarkoszy was my man, then Merkel is my gal! ... And Tusk is my bro for life!"

During the recent French presidential election, I took time to back Nicolas Sarkozy. What a neat guy: pro-capitalism, particularly pro-business (vs. the typical french reliance on government) and willing to stick his neck out like the pro-American cowboy-wannabe that he is. Finally, a president of France who embodies the word suave!

Then there's Angela Merkel quietly but bravely trodding the same trail that Nick-o is on. Pro-american (or at least less anti- than most continental politicians); pro-business and willing to fight some hard fights vs. the traditionally german paralyzing social-protectionism. I have to apologize to her for neglecting to give her an equal shout-out.

While I'm in the mood to genuflect, I should also give a belated nod to Donald Tusk, Polish PM. This guys is strong-like-bear enough to get elected even (sarcastic gasp!) with straight talk and a pro-growth, low-tax, pro-privatization, pro-decentralization (or even lessened state intervention), increased civil liberties platform.

Sarkozy's parents fled communist dictatorship in Hungary in 1944. Merkel, herself, grew up in the oppression of East Germany. Tusk braved the secret police for decades as a member of the (at the time illegal) Solidarity party, personally fighting for the freedoms he now can protect.

Lesson for today: It's no coincidence to me that those who have seen the evils which accompany collectivism are some of the most staunch supporters of the individual's right to act without government intervention. At least somebody understands. East is the new West. Once bit, twice shy.

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