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Wednesday, January 10, 2007



Just a couple factual corrections (I'm a Lithuanian citizen): there are/were 3,5 million habitants in Lithuania, not 4 mln. I wouldn't be so sure of underlining the problem of alcoholism either. Of course, it exists but mostly in rural and quite poor areas. I wouldn't call it as being of high rate. Unfortunately, I don't know the real figures.

Well, though the salary is said to be only one factor leading to immigration, it's a really important one. Lots of people are fed up with minimum wage imposed by, let's say, retail sector. That's why the lady has to stand in the line now - there are fewer and fewer workers wishing to do a hellish job for a minimum wage.

One another important thing that's is blowing figures up is the family. Usually, there's only one member at first going to the British isles to find a job. If he succeeds, he brings his family members as well. In other words, instead of one person we now have 3-4.

And the last one that's highly debated and everyone agrees that's a huge problem: higher education. Students are massively fleeing to European/American universities because of their really higher level of education. Moreover, it has become a kind of a vicious circle since the brightest PhDs are also usually choosing either the private sector or a foreign institution due to low salaries within the universities. No good education is possible without good lecturers, isn't it?

Akhond of swat

Lots of Chinese and Indian taxi drivers, plumbers, repairmen would be only too happy to go to Eastern Europe


R: "I wouldn't be so sure of underlining the problem of alcoholism either. Of course, it exists but mostly in rural and quite poor areas. I wouldn't call it as being of high rate."

Alcohol consumption is linked to alcoholism, obviously. Here are some WHO figures:

Country / liters consumed by adult (<15 years old) per annum
France 11.4
Lithuania 9.9
Sweden 6.0
United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland 11.8
United States of America 8.6


As always, whne I hear talk about labor shortages being a problem I want to both laugh and cry. There is no such thing as a shortage in and of itself, but rather a shortage at current prices.

Lines are to long at retail because "Lots of people are fed up with minimum wage"? Uh, how about raising wages and attracting workers from someone else? This is what a genuine labor shortage is about, there are no longer a pool of unemployed workers, so you need to bid a worker away from another business. This may a problem for businesses, but it is hardly a problem for the people.

Raising wages enough for skilled professions like doctors however may be impossible though if people simply can't afford to pay the salaries. The question however really is if that is the case. Does Lithuania offer "free" (cough) healthcare? If so, I suspect that is the problem right there, the government simply has a price ceiling on doctor wages, and of course you have a shortage. Due to the apparent labor "shortages" in the Lithuanian labor market, wages ought to be rising, and I strongly suspect they are, regardless of whether or not the journalist writer of the quoted article wants to admit it or not (or even sees it). The more such wages rise, the more affordable the real price of doctors and other skilled trades will be for the locals.

I like Akhond of swat's idea to "import" Indians and Chinese skilled labor. It ought to alleviate the emigration problem where the only way to have enough workers for local needs is to pay Western wages for construction, plumbers, doctors etc. Both of those countries have a tradition of entrepreneurship as well which bodes well for anyone bright enough to encourage them to come in. Such entrepreneurs create new jobs, which to fill they must bid up wages. Instead, immigrants from Belorussia, Ukraine etc. may be white which some might feel more comfortable with, but hteir heritage is freeloading under communism, the antithesis of what you want in immigrants.

Arthur Eckart

The only way the U.S. dollar will collapse is if some export-led economies collapse. U.S. monetary policy is restrictive compared to monetary policies in many export-led economies. See related article: http://www.peaktrader.com/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?t=17178 Also, it looks like Iran is increasingly becoming surrounded. The U.S. economy has become large and diversified, which makes it stable. However, there's some concern about simultaneous market bubbles in the goods market, money market, housing market, commodities market (including oil, gold, copper, etc.), stock market, bond market, etc. Also, maintaining the tax cuts, Iraq war, and Democrats control of Congress (which may increase spending) affect the economy. Moreover, the U.S. is in a long-term structural bear market.


AE: "The U.S. economy has become large and diversified, which makes it stable. "

Shall we right that on a tombstone as, "Famous last words"?


"Alcohol consumption is linked to alcoholism, obviously. Here are some WHO figures:"

Lafayette, how accurate do you think those numbers are?

Your country, for example, gets phenomenal numbers of tourists (and people who go on "booze cruises"). Is there any way of screening these people out of "alko consumption per head"?


suvi: "how accurate do you think those numbers are?"

If you've got better numbers, show them.

"Your country, for example, gets phenomenal numbers of tourists (and people who go on "booze cruises")"

Now I've heard everything. This is laughable.



"If you've got better numbers, show them"

I asked how accurate you thought the numbers you quoted are. Do you think they're accurate?

"This is laughable"

On the contrary - NOT to take it into account is laughable. The question is: do they?


"Do you think they're accurate?"

In a word, yes. Now, let's see YOUR numbers.


Lafayette, the only number I've seen is one that comes from the Estonian drinks industry. According to their estimates, around 30% of all alcoholic drinks purchased in Estonia are not consumed there. If that's anywhere near true - and there are good reasons to believe it could be - then it would be interesting to know whether and to what extent the official stats reflect this.

And hence my question to you, because you live in a country where very large quantities of alco export could pass under the statistical radar, and I wondered if you had an opinion from a French perspective. It was a serious question.


"and I wondered if you had an opinion from a French perspective. It was a serious question."

France does have a SERIOUS alcholic problem.

For the moment, the "illness of alcoholism" is not reported by the health statistics, or if they are I can't find them.

However, illnesses resulting from alchohol is collected (per 100K inhabitants) by the WHO in terms of:
- Chronic liver disease,
- Road traffic deaths and
- Chronic liver disease.








Make of these statistics what you will. I see no "smoking gun" in any country. Apparently Estonia, for some reason, has far less incidence of chronic liver disease than its neighbors.


Oooopps - the first "result" of alcoholism above should read "selected alcohol related causes".


Make of these statistics what you will

Lafayette, thanks for your reply

Howie Copywriter

The bubble will pop soon, like:
The latest in rampant real estate speculation in the building of the Bronx Gateway Mall, in the South Bronx. The Gateway Fast Track Unit has been set up at 149th St., near the Major Deegan Expressway to coordinate with the community, employment and quality of life issues involving the Gateway Center Mall under construction. Construction of the Mall has gone on for about a year, from E 149th St to E 153rd St.and River St. and is planned to house one million square feet of retail space. This is on the former site of the Bronx Terminal Market.

Two meetings were convened by the Gateway Fast Track Unit, at Hostos College on Janurary 4th and 5th, to allow the community to assess the progress of the project. The Fast Track Unit is affiliated with the Bronx Overall Development Corporation (BOEDC), and set up to deal with the South Bronx’s community’s concerns about the Gateway Mall project. A Community Agreement allows people to have a voice in shaping the project. The meetings brought up the need for rats and vermin control and to plant trees in area near the construction. More on http://www.realcrash.com

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The hepatitis A virus can be killed by boiling infected foods for three minutes and by disinfecting surfaces infected with the virus with bleach. It is best to avoid eating raw or partially cooked mollusks (clams, oysters, mussels, and scallops), as these fish often live in HAV-contaminated rivers and seas. When traveling to areas of the world known to have a high incidence of hepatitis A, it is especially important to eat well-cooked foods and to drink only bottled water. Sanitizing diaper-changing tables is also important, as hepatitis A-infected infants are typically a silent source for the spread of hepatitis A infection. Meticulous hand washing is of a great importance after using the bathroom, before eating a meal, and when preparing food for others.

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