A quick round up of some topical stories for you:
Poland is a poor country
It seems all those who keep whining about how poor Poland is are actually right! Poland comes fourth from bottom of the EU “rich list” judging by GDP per capita (as expressed by Purchasing Power Standards which eliminate price level differences between countries).
The only countries to be worse off than Poland are, in descending order;
- Latvia (crisis stricken – definitely)
- Romania (overrun by gypsies, dead dogs & thieves – allegedly)
- Bulgaria (in the grip of the mafia – allegedly)
Doesn’t look good, does it! [That's one of those 'question tag things - feel free to ignore it]
Finance Minister gets a close shave
No wonder Tusk is looking so miserable. His minister of finance seated next to him, Jacek Rostowski, survived a vote of no confidence yesterday by 223 votes to 193, not exactly encouraging. It’s pretty easy to understand the concerns though. Looking back at an article in the Economist from a year ago we see that Tusk’s government was predicting a budget deficit this year of 1.3% of GDP, well within the EU 3% guideline. A year on and we’re looking at a deficit that is predicted to be a whopping 6.6% of GDP and stern words from the EU to get this back under control.
I have trouble believing that the economic crisis has unexpectedly deteriorated by such a magnitude in the last 12 months so I think it’s fair to ask questions about the competence of this government’s financial management and forecasting. One thing for sure, we won’t be enjoying these lower tax rates for very long!
Want a Polish Master’s degree? Got €330?
So the truth is out, we finally know why there are so many Poles with Master’s Degrees – because there’s a roaring trade in downloaded pre-prepared theses. For just €330 you can buy yourself a Master’s thesis on any subject you like, but why stop there? For €3,000 you may as well go the whole hog and get a Doctoral one!
For some people writing dissertations on demand is the only source of income and they earn up to 3,000 zlotys (660 euros) a month. Internet shops which specialize in writing Master’s, Bachelor’s and Doctoral theses, and employ the whole teams of “experts” are also thriving.
This doesn’t surprise me in the slightest. Not that Pole’s aren’t as smart as we thought they were but that they are smart enough to find find ways around everything, usually involving a download and a profitable business opportunity. What they lack in thesis writing ability they make up for in street savvy.
The next Polish sporting hero is……..
For sure going to be Agnieszka Radwanska, the tennis player who is currently competing at Wimbledon. Yesterday, she won a very tight second round match against the unseeded Chinese player, Ping Pong (surely shome mishtake – Ed). I expect to see Aga crowned as the Ladies Singles champ pretty soon and for a Polish media frenzy to follow immediately thereafter. Her younger sister, Urszula, who is also playing at Wimbledon this year, sadly lost her second round match against Slovakian Dominika Cibulkova (something to do with onions perhaps?) and so will be taking an early bath. Give it a couple of years and we’ll be toasting “the Polish Williams sisters”. What am I talking about, let’s toast them now, who cares if they won anything yet! GO GO RADWANSKA SISTERS!!!