Tag Archives: bulgaria

Observations of an ex pat: And so it begins…

And so it begins. Or at least it will on Friday January 20th when Donald Trump stands, on the steps of the US Capitol building, places his hand on The Bible and swears to protect and uphold the constitution of the United States.

The US presidential inauguration is a celebration of American democracy and the peaceful transition from one administration to the next. There are parades, marching bands, waving flags, an inaugural ball and a bevvy of Hollywood stars.

Not this time. Oh yes, all the above will occur as usual. But in addition a million-plus protesters are expected to descend on Washington DC to political disown the elected President of the United States. “Not our President” they will shout.

And all the indications are that the forthcoming inaugural weekend  is a mere curtain raiser for the global thrills and spills to come. If you enjoy life on the edge, than you are living on the right planet at the right time. 

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged , and | 6 Comments

Opinion: Shades of Grey 2: Six Useful Facts to Help You Chillax this Christmas

  1. There are nine countries to which Romanians and Bulgarians can travel to from 1 January: Austria, Belgium, Germany, Luxemburg, Malta, Netherlands, Spain (only Romanians), the UK and Switzerland.
  2. There are around 6.5 million Romanians and 2.1 million Bulgarians in the age group 20-39, 8.6 million in total.
  3. So far, 1.9 million Romanians and 0.35 million Bulgarians have already emigrated to other EU countries (Eurostat 2010, Open Society Insititute Sofia, 2011), including 80,000 Romania-born persons to the UK (ONS 2011) and 160,000 to Germany (German Office of Migration Studies , 2013).
  4. Labour and skills shortages are reported from Bulgaria and in

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged , and | 7 Comments

It’s “Immigration Hysteria Day”. Again. Here’s how Lib Dems need to respond

Another day, another bout of “the UK’s about to be invaded by 29 million Bulgarians and Romanians” hysteria. But today it’s not Nigel Farage splattering mis-shapen statistics into the debate: it’s the Prime Minister, David Cameron – increasingly resembling Mr Farage’s mini-me – who’s showing leadership by following the tabloid press. Here’s how the BBC lists the new proposals:

  • New migrants will not get out-of-work benefits for the first three months
  • Payments will be stopped after six months unless the claimant has a “genuine” chance of a job
  • The “habitual residency test” to determine eligibility for benefits will be tightened up
  • An earnings

Posted in News | Also tagged , , , , , and | 44 Comments
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