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March 10, 2006


Jonathan Steele on Lukaschenko:

Would you expect a European leader who has presided over a continual increase in real wages for several years, culminating in a 24% rise over the past 12 months, to be voted out of office?

Dunno. But I’d expect any such leader to have been fiddling the figures. A 24 % rise in real wages isn’t sustainable. Bit like Barbour’s "dash for growth". Such things always end in tears. Real wages can’t rise faster than productivity, not in the long term.

(The IMF, while admitting Lukashenko's economic success, calls it "ultimately unsustainable", being based on cheap Russian energy imports and wage increases that outstrip productivity growth.)


Me, I’d say that’s a populist dictator fiddling before the election without a care about what happens after it. As long as he remains in power. Mr. Steele feels differently.

Quick question. Has anyone ever seen Jonathan Steele and Neil Clark in the same room?

March 10, 2006 in Economics | Permalink


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Neil Clarke had a great piece where he has a Lukashenko Speech. It could have been George Galloway or Hugo Chavez speaking it was so crackpot.

Mr Clarke was using it as evidence for the defence however, not the prosecution.

Posted by: EU Serf | Mar 10, 2006 11:23:59 AM

Any regime, no matter how odious, is worthy of praise, as soon as there's even the whiff of confrontation with the US. Witness Iran, Syria, and now this.

Posted by: Mr Eugenides | Mar 10, 2006 12:21:16 PM

Same room!? Christ, they share the same bed.

Posted by: dkidd | Mar 10, 2006 11:06:45 PM

Now that Slobo's popped his clogs, I can see Clark and Steele clutching each other and gazing adoringly at a big picture of the old monster while hot, salty tears run down their little faces.

It is an image that cheers me immensely.

Posted by: David Gillies | Mar 11, 2006 4:53:05 PM