Tag Archives: France

Helicopter Money

This week on Facebook: Sees me return to economics, yet more history and the despair of an old man who — like all old men before me — thinks that the world is going to hell in a handcart. My first instinct was to ignore articles on helicopter money as it being something that I was incapable of having an influence on (which is true) and finding myself totally confused by the rationales offered by economists and politicians. Nevertheless, the notion of helicopter money made me think of some historic precedents that I believe are valid allusions to its use. Read more of this post

The Siege

“So William, I beat you again!”

“Perhaps you should not brag so Georgina, when we are wed I may beat as often as I like.”

She hotly replied, “No man will ever beat me William Young, husband or not!”

Watching him as he unstrung his bow and started walking towards her, she immediately regretted her sharp-tongued reply. She remembered vividly her parents announcing her betrothal to him, the feeling of elation, the love for him. A feeling she had held from the very first moment they met, each time she looked at him love welled up inside her, so much that she thought her heart would burst.

As he approached her he said, “You are closer to the butt than me.”

“But always a better shot,” she replied. Read more of this post

The Troika & The IMF

This week on Facebook: My innate cynicism tells me that that this exercise in flagellation by the International Money Fund (IMF) issuing their critical report¹, is not a pursuit of penance but rather a manipulation of the media. The Moving Finger writes; and, having writ, Moves on:… and so does the IMF. The media criticism of the IMF’s handling of crises mentioned in the report, especially the crisis in Greece and that of the Eurozone, will soon be forgotten as the media also moves on. The IMF will be left to continue dispensing its euphemistic aid regardless of its efficacy to those in receipt of it. Read more of this post

Stop The World I Want To Get Off

Stop The World I Want To Get Off is a musical set against the backdrop of a circus, the show focuses on Littlechap, from the moment of his birth to his death. Each time something unsatisfactory happens, he calls out ‘Stop the world!’ and addresses the audience. In a week ending with the result of the UK referendum on membership of the EU (Brexit) a post on Syria is hardly like to excite an audience. Nevertheless my attention was caught by Monday’s article suggesting that Sykes-Picot agreement was not responsible for shaping the future of the Middle-East, following which I decided to devote this week on Facebook to Syria. Relying on the modern media for information and especially the social media, which seems to feed on unsatisfactory outcomes, encouraged me to see the world as a circus and myself as Littlechap. Read more of this post

Marrano – The Letters

Between late 1938 and July 1942, my twin brother, Abraham Francisco Hubsch, wrote to me at least once a fortnight from Paris. Our ambition was to study together at l’École de Paris, but we agreed that one of us should stay in Santa Cruz de la Sierra with Mama.  Being Marrano was just family history which, to us both, could have no relevance in this day and age. We should have listened to Mama, history does have a way of repeating itself. Here are five letters written by Abraham between 1939 and his disappearance in 1942.

Miguel Ariel Hubsch

1952 Read more of this post

That Odious Greek Debt

Der Spiegel reported in May 2010 that without bribes virtually no foreign company could do business in Greece. In How German Companies Bribed Their Way to Greek Deals, Der Speigel claimed that the money from bribery enriched industrialists, civil servants, the military and politicians.  Read more of this post


How many times have I gazed at his sketches and read his letters I muse, fifty, one hundred, more? Sometimes smiling, sometimes quietly weeping, sometimes doing both, afraid that failing in this ritual would eventually lead to all memories of Abraham fading. Perhaps this visit to Abraham’s favourite Café is really a pilgrimage? There’s L’église Saint Germain des Prés, just as Abraham sketched it and the cartoon clearly shows a view of …

My recognition of the scenes around me are interrupted by someone excitedly calling, “Señor Hubsch! Señor Hubsch!” A waiter is trotting towards me, his face a beaming smile, his arms outstretched, finally embracing me as he might a returning son. Stepping back his face assumes a sad expression, there are tears in eyes as he places his hands on my shoulders: “Señor Hubsch, I never expected to see you again, they took so many and so few have returned. I’m so sorry, so sorry,” almost whispering, “Where is Mademoiselle Rebecca?” Confused, I don’t answer. He breaks my silence, saying in a consolatory manner: “Never mind Señor Hubsch, you’re back and look, your favourite table is free. Please – come and sit down while I bring your café.” Leading me to the table, he pulls out a chair for me and sits me down, briefly patting my shoulder before vanishing back into the restaurant. Read more of this post

A Tale of Two Maggots

An article that I read supporting Malthusian theory and concerning vegans and speciesism, reminded me of entomophagy, which I introduced in Jiminy Cricket. Those readers who recognise ‘A Tale of Two Maggots’ as an allusion to Dickens’ A Tale of Two Cities, should be aware that the French connection is not Les Deux Magots. This is the name of a famous Paris restaurant that I used as my setting for Marrano. Located in St-Germain-des-Prés, the restaurant is named after the two figurines (les deux magots) on display and has no connection with maggots or entomophagy. Read more of this post

Friend me now!

A recent incident prompted me to recount the following anecdote, one that I intended to post with the title The Diary Of A Silly Old Fart’. However, I immediately came upon a problem that I knew would jar with those who, like me, comprised the less erudite readership of the one time website My Telegraph. That is; the use of the words ‘friend and unfriend’ as verbs. Finding an apodictic verb usage was difficult but thanks to Megan Garber, an article that she wrote for The Atlantic settled this for me (and perhaps a few others). As Megan writes in her (brief) article ‘friend,’ as a Verb, Is 800 Years Old adding, its use as verb is not the construction of FaceBook co-founder Mark Zuckerberg. One day a new verb ‘to zucker’ may be added to the SOED and those falling prey to a social network scam can be said to have been ‘zuckered’. Read more of this post

A passport and a prerogative to boot.

There is no entitlement to a passport, they are issued by a Minister’s exercise of the Royal prerogative and exercising this Royal prerogative also means that a passport can be withdrawn. There is no statute law governing the grant or refusal of British passports. A Government Minister exercising the Royal prerogative may assume that Rex non potest peccare (the King can do no wrong), yet controversy surrounding the ministerial use of the Royal prerogative continues unabated. Read more of this post

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Hello, I’m Ed Conway, Economics Editor of Sky News, and this is my website. Blogposts, stuff about my books and a little bit of music


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