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Wanna party on Facebook?

Everyone: I’ve set up a Facebook group for The Iceland Weather Report – and you are cordially invited to join!

I’ve been thinking of doing this for a while, partly because we’ve been getting so many links to things in the comments section, and this way people can post links on the group’s message board, or photos, or videos, or discussion topics, or … whatever they feel like [pretty much].

Of course you can also continue leaving them in the comments; that’s perfectly fine. This is just another option, that may give your links, photos, etc. a bit more exposure.

So if you have something you want to ask, or a topic you want to address, or an announcement you want to make, add it to the message board.

The group is open to anyone, but the hitch is of course that you have to be on Facebook to join. However, anyone can view the group and read what’s on the boards.

OK – let’s get to it! I look pretty lonely sitting there all by myself.

IT’S BEEN EXCEPTIONALLY COLD
With subzero temps and killer wind. Pretty nasty. And most awfully, the recession is digging its claws in deeper by the day. We’re really starting to feel it now … but more on that later. Sunrise this morning will be at 10:38 am and sunset at 3.53.

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  • Steve November 29, 2008, 5:40 am

    The population of the Westman Islands is rising?

  • Annie Rhiannon November 29, 2008, 6:20 am

    THE POPULATION OF THE WESTMAN ISLES IS RISING?!

    I joined your groupy group.

  • Muriel Volestrangler November 29, 2008, 7:07 am

    Here’s my nomination for Quote of the Day:
    “10% of our problems are due to the Kreppa and 90% are due to wrong decisions and in-decisions in the wake of the Kreppa”
    – Jón Daníelsson (Icelandic economist in England)

    By the way, has anyone been writing haiku about the crisis (or Kreppa-ku)? Haiku is a good way to relieve frustration, according to the Japanese. Here would be an example:
    “Snow brings winter light
    My country is a wasteland
    David Oddson – thanks”

  • Marc Scot November 29, 2008, 8:06 am

    And the cracks in the government continue to widen. Can the MSA actually refuse a directive like that?

    Cool kreppa-ku!

  • James November 29, 2008, 11:29 am

    I’m not on Facebook but, if I were, I’d probably join that group! If you ever start a YouTube channel, I’d subscribe to that…

    “British Prime Minister Gordon Brown brought two Icelandic banks to their knees when he froze their operations in Britain and placed the Icelandic Ministry of Finance and Central Bank on an official list of terrorist organizations. He then, with the help of the EU, used force to shift the massive debts of private individuals onto the shoulders of the Icelandic people. Yet when American finance companies did the same thing that the Icelandic banks were accused of doing, British authorities took no action.”
    Well, from that quote, I assume that Professor Hannes’ university chair is in modern Icelandic fiction:
    1. I thought it was Landsbanki (not the Icelandic Ministry of Finance or Central Bank) that was placed on the official list.
    2. I thought it was officially a list of regimes subject to financial sanctions (not specifically a list of terrorist organisations).
    3. I thought the Icelandic state had always guaranteed private savings in passported banks up to a legal minimum per account (as per EU/EEA law), with the Icelandic government having always used the Icelandic state to underwrite that risk. I can see a shift from ignorance to awareness as Icelanders realised the unacceptably large risk that their government had exposed their state to, but I can’t see that Brown shifted any obligations.
    4. I thought that American finance companies and the US government didn’t do the same thing as Icelandic banks and the Icelandic authorities. Perhaps I missed Bush/Bernanke saying that the US state would unlawfully prioritise bank assets towards the private accounts of American citizens over foreign citizens for an American bank passporting in the EU as it went into administration…
    So, Brown may have overreacted with the legislation, but the professor’s misinformation diverts attention from the Icelandic authorities (not Brown) being responsible for allowing Iceland’s unacceptably large obligations to accumulate in the first place – and the culpable leaders in those Icelandic authorities should now be held accountable for their breach of duty…

  • Michelle in NZ November 29, 2008, 12:58 pm

    Opposite hemispheres, seasons and sunrise/sets – yet similar happenings all over. Through this year more than a few finance companies have “gone bust” in NZ, swallowing up the investors money.

    Thank you for teaching me so much about Niceland (you haven’t called it that for quite a while….)

    Imagine tv ads showing snow, wintery, xmassy stuff, when it is 24 Degrees(c) outside

    Sending care and sincere huggles to you, from Michelle and Zebby-cat (who is snoring once more) in Wellington, NZ.

    Yeah, okay, I’m wearing shorts and a teeshirt at almost 2.00am in the morning, actually unusual to be able to in Wellington in the wee small hours at any time of the year.

  • Andrew November 29, 2008, 1:44 pm

    “With subzero temps and killer wind. Pretty nasty. And most awfully, the recession is digging its claws in deeper by the day. We’re really starting to feel it now…”

    This kind of weather must make people feel depressed at the best of times! Generally, how do people tend to behave in the Winter?

    So far as the recession/depression goes – we don’t need so much of the big political/economic issues – knowing how the ordinary people are being hit is what we would really like to know as this is not reported anywhere.

  • Andrew November 29, 2008, 1:59 pm

    Have you bought one!?

    http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/b82f2ec4-bd79-11dd-bba1-0000779fd18c.html

    Icelanders collapse in laughter
    By David Ibison in Stockholm
    Published: November 28 2008

    With its banking system in crisis, violent demonstrations in Reykjavik, a punishing recession on the way and soaring inflation, there may not seem much to laugh about in Iceland.

    But Icelanders take pride in their darkly ironic sense of humour. The latest example is The Crisis Game, a board game that takes a grimly comical swipe at the financial crisis that has devastated the economy.

  • luigi November 29, 2008, 3:56 pm

    Not everyone who throws shit on you, can be an enemy

  • alda November 29, 2008, 6:37 pm

    luigi – what, no seit4buffoon?

  • min-ciné November 29, 2008, 8:45 pm

    RÚV cuts costs by ISK 550 million.
    Is the map of the weather forecast going to get even smaller?

  • Muriel Volestrangler November 29, 2008, 9:31 pm

    It’s amazing how little of the really important news gets reported by the Icelandic press. A week or two ago someone related to the government mentioned the possibility of foreign creditors taking ownership of the “new” Icelandic banks, or part of them, as repayment. Now that idea has come up again as a real possibility.
    In the last few days the German bank creditors announced that they were forming a consortium to manage the collection of the debt owed them, some $21 billion.
    Earlier an Icelandic finance minister said that the total cost would be $20 billion and that it would take until perhaps 2020 to pay it off. The $20 billion included the $5-6 billion IMF loan and the $5 billion or so for Icesave.
    So what about the Germans and their $21 billion? At a minimum it seems that the total repayment cost would be $30 billion, not $20 billion. Was the Icelandic government lying to the people — yet again?
    And how are the Germans going to get paid back? Well, probably by giving them ownership of the “new” banks, which would make them creditors (and owners) of large parts of Icelandic real estate, agriculture industry, businesses, etc. Maybe they would even own part of the fish quotas. Icelanders, meet your new overlords — the Germans.
    And if Iceland joins the EU, then the fishing grounds shrink to 12 miles.
    All of this shows what an enormous, catastrophic mistake the Icelandic government made by nationalizing the banks and taking reponsibility for their debts. They should have let them completely fail and walked away from the debt, whatever the short-term problems may have been. Their solution is/was to hand over ownership of everything in the country to foreign creditors, and let the little people work as indentured servants for the next 20 years.

  • alda November 29, 2008, 11:55 pm

    James – I’m not selling Professor HHG’s quote any dearer than I bought it (as the Icelanders would say), but I expect this article should answer your questions:

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB122695569056034695.html

  • James November 30, 2008, 3:56 pm

    Alda – Yes, I agree that Brown overreacted and that unfortunately harmed Iceland. However, surely Icelanders aren’t treating that newspaper article as a true description of events and expert legal opinion – it was written by a culpable board member of Iceland’s central bank!!! To highlight just a couple of examples:
    1. “if the fund is unable to fully meet its obligations, then there is no requirement, under EEA rules, for the Icelandic government to step in”. Well, that seems to be the opposite to what all EU states unanimously subsequently declared! So, the board member is effectively saying that he was complicit in exposing Icelanders to unacceptable risk because he was ignorant of the legal and financial implications. Do Icelanders really want to keep such board members, especially as higher competence levels will be required to navigate the recession…
    – “the Icelandic Ministry of Finance and Central Bank even found themselves briefly on the list of terrorist organizations published on the Web site of the British Treasury”. What *evidence* is there of this? As I said, I thought only Landsbanki was on a list…

    Note I’m not attacking Iceland; actually the opposite as my underlying point is merely that the country urgently needs more capable leaders for the recession. But the current leaders are repeatedly trying to divert Icelanders’ attention from their past incompetence – and it appears that this newspaper article was a successful example… Anyway, all this serious stuff seems a little too heavy for a Sunday afternoon!

  • Stan December 1, 2008, 11:11 pm

    About Facebook…

    I just wonder if participation in the Facebook forum will detract from the page counts on this site and thus might hurt your chances for getting advertisers. I prefer the forum to comments because threads are preserved and can grow rather than be dropped when the next post comes out.

    What to do?

  • alda December 2, 2008, 9:59 pm

    Stan – don’t worry about it. I don’t. I think if anything these two can work very well in tandem. The Facebook group doesn’t allow for posts and subsequent discussions related to those posts like the blog does, but it does allow people to start their own discussions, etc. which the blog does not. I don’t anticipate my stats to drop on the site – if anything the group will help publicize the blog. So go for it!

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