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YT strikes on the BBC

… Or BBC Radio Scotland, to be precise.

Riddoch Questions is a radio show hosted by Lesley Riddoch that was broadcast today. Lesley, who is keenly interested in the parallels between Iceland and Scotland, came here last week to discover first-hand just how we’re coping amidst the economic rubble. I think anyone interested in Iceland will find this fascinating … I did, even though I cannot listen to myself without cringing [I was in the midst of a severe blood-sugar crash and am surprised I actually sound coherent] … Lesley starts out with a recording of the demonstration last Saturday and interviews some people on the scene, then moves on to talking with Guðni [Th. Jóhannesson] who sounds eminently lucid and makes some excellent points. After that it’s Eygló and myself … YT has her 15 minutes of fame about 16 minutes in, the actual Iceland bit starts around 3 minutes in, and sort of tapers off towards the end as they move on to discussing the collapse of Scotland’s banks.

Note that the link expires in seven days’ time.

On a completely different note: check this out. A petition has been set in motion by a group calling themselves Movement for a New Republic in Iceland, urging the International Monetary Fund and others not to lend the Icelandic government any moneys. To wit:

We, the People of the Republic of Iceland in this period of economic turmoil and near national bankruptcy, declare to the International Monetary Fund, to the Central Banks of all our neighbouring countries and to their respective governments, that it is not in the interest of the people of Iceland that our current government receive loans from anyone.

It is precisely because of corruption in government and severe mismanagement of economic and monetary policy, that Iceland is now in such a sad and shameful position. Since we believe that a more politically accountable and civilised government is now crucial in order to ensure an effective implementation of economic recovery and reconstruction, a change has to be made in government to restore trust and credibility, domestically as well as internationally.

We are working hard to press for early elections and are convinced that they will result in a new government followed by a new professional governance structure.

Until then,

Please do not deliver the money.

Ha! I think I shall have to lie down under a skin, long and hard, to decide whether or not to put my name on it.

I barely went out in the fresh air today. I walked from the front door to my car, and from my car to the gym. Shocking, I know. However, for those brief moments it seemed like the weather was just fine. Calm, crisp, overcast, around 1°C. Right now it’s 0°C [32F], sunrise was at 10:17 am, sunset at 4.10 pm.



Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Marc Scot November 21, 2008, 6:49 pm

    It appears that the die is cast! Frankly, I’m surprised it took this long before a vote of no-confidence appeared. (Also, cold in Scotland today too…)

  • Roy November 21, 2008, 7:03 pm

    An excellent read from the author of “Liar’s Poker”. Take the time, you’ll learn!


  • alda November 21, 2008, 7:17 pm

    Marc – they say they were waiting for the IMF loan to go through. Didn’t want to rock the boat during delicate negotiations. Now that that’s happened, though, they’re going for the jugular.

  • The Other Katherine Harris November 21, 2008, 9:23 pm

    Charming presentation, Alda. You have a marvelous voice, in addition to your talent as a communicator and your good looks. Ever thought about a career in TV news? Bet you could have it on a platter.

    I loved your gorgeous recent photos, too. It’s great that you’re still able to detach yourself from the economic/political debacle and do purely creative things. I’ve been unable to write poetry, listen to music with sustained interest, act in a play or, for that matter, draw a truly relaxed breath, since Shrub and His Thugs took power here and began committing the ever-greater horrors they’re still getting away with. Beauty became irrelevant, compared to straining against all that.

    As for the petition, I’d sign in a heartbeat if Icelandic, but then you already know where I stand on the IMF/World Bank thugs and their enablers.

    Conditions continue to worsen daily in the States, for all but the oligarchs. No doubt a larger percentage of our populace is actually suffering than of yours, although this won’t be true for long, if the IMF gets hooks into you, privatizes everything in sight and forbids social spending.

    Warm good wishes from New Mexico, where it’s colder than usual (about 40 degrees F) under bright turquoise skies and the air is still after wild gales yesterday,

  • Marc November 21, 2008, 9:58 pm

    Hi Alda,

    Very nice radio broadcast. Taught me something about Icelandic history too. Hmm. Do you know you have a tendency to pick up your conversation partner’s accent? You sort of moved toward the Scottish inflection in this interview. Only people with a very good feeling for language have that.

    All the best.


  • alda November 21, 2008, 10:20 pm

    Erin – why thank you! But trust me – I’d be terrible on TV. I have a cameraphobia – I freeze up when I have a lens pointed at me.

    Marc – actually people have been telling me for years (even when I lived in Canada) that I had a slight Scottish inflection. I have no idea where it comes from – and as a result I don’t think I can take credit for your last complement!

  • hildigunnur November 21, 2008, 11:27 pm

    Alda, a cameraphobia wears off, trust me :p

    I signed already.

    Can’t seem to be able to listen to your presentation, doesn’t work on my Mac’s Firefox, Safari nor Opera 🙁 Will try Chrome on the work computer tomorrow.

  • Ian November 22, 2008, 12:28 am

    What a nightmare – I can’t think that Baager and these bastard fucked you up so much… I work in banking in the UK and always wonder how Kaupthing etc where behind some many buyout deals. Seems that some people in Iceland have been screwed to pay for their yacht. Best wishes to all the ordinary people of Iceland and good lcuk.

  • Andrew November 22, 2008, 1:08 pm

    Interesting programme! I learned something from it.

    Was there another demonstration today?

  • trev london November 22, 2008, 1:19 pm

    You are as elloquent in speech as you are in print, alda. As said elsewhere, you would be great in broadcast journalism. Your English shames some BBC reporters. Have you heard the economics editor, Robert Peston? He sounds like he’s being continually strangled. I wish he were, sword of doom as he is.

    What is interesting is the difference between attitudes there and here. Your optimism should be a beacon to follow. Here, most folk are down, me included. My business is down 50% this month and severe economies are in progress (though I’m still cooking with olive oil 🙂 ) as I brace for even worse to come. I don’t think many have the faith that our politicians can get us out – indeed many are terrified at the level of debt Brown seems willing to take on. I am in that group. They see the answer in more of what got us in the shit to start with. A correction has to correct. They want the status quo.

    An excellent interview, though I shuddered why Eyglo actually said she was glad it had happened, without qualifying it. I know what she meant, but a lot of folk have lost a lot of money in the debacle and I wish she had just made that acknowledgement. A pleasure to hear your voice – and yes, I noticed the Scottish inflection too!!

  • James November 22, 2008, 7:02 pm

    Nice to put a voice to the text 🙂 Ever thought of adding a weekly audio podcast (or, better yet, embedded YouTube video) to your blog?…

  • namme November 22, 2008, 7:15 pm

    I didn’t notice a Scottish inflection, but then again I live in Newfoundland and my perception of accents is now skewed. But well done in any event.