Free Markets, Free People
Much more so than does the President of this country apparently:
Chancellor George Osborne has announced a number of measures to try to help business in his Budget.
Corporation Tax will be reduced by 2% from April 2011, rather than 1% as previously intended, and fall by 1% in the next three years, to reach 23%.
Mr Osborne also said that he was looking to boost enterprise and exports, as part of a Budget "for making things".
He said he also wanted the UK to be the best place to establish a company.
"Cuts in the burden of corporation tax, that will be worth around £2bn per annum when implemented over the coming years, are likely to be particularly beneficial for big multinational companies," said BBC business editor Robert Peston.
"And a significant lifting of planning constraints will delight much of the corporate sector."
He added: "With the corporation tax changes – and the recent pledge by Vince Cable to slash red tape – they represent a loosening of alleged shackles on the corporate sector."
And business body the CBI said the Budget would help business grow and create jobs.
Wow … what a concept. Cut business taxes and attract businesses, create jobs and actually increase government revenue.
Now, there’s a “jobs bill” for you.
One of the stated goals of this war on Libya has been to “avert a humanitarian crisis”. But the Washington Post seems to believe such a crisis is now being precipitated there:
Aid organizations scrambled Wednesday to prepare for large-scale relief operations in Libya, as fears grew of a potential humanitarian crisis in a key city besieged by government forces.
International military forces on Wednesday stepped up attacks on government troops in Misurata, 131 miles east of Tripoli. The airstrikes seemed to bring a temporary respite from the fighting that had raged for six days between forces loyal to Moammar Gaddafi and rebels, as government tanks retreated from the city center.
But after nightfall, the tanks returned and resumed their attacks, according to a doctor at the city’s main hospital. “They are shelling everywhere,” he said by telephone.
Patients were being treated on the floor, medical supplies were falling short, fuel for the generator was running low, and water had been cut off, said the doctor, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because he feared retaliation by Libyan forces.
What I’d guess the coalition will learn eventually is you can’t stop what is going on in Libya from 30,000 feet, no matter how many coalition members and aircraft you use. He who is on the ground, and controls it, determines who can be on the ground with him.
Trying to sort “white from red” as one of the DoD briefers termed it (civilians = white/Gadhafi troops = red) is exceedingly hard, especially in an urban area. While it may be clear that the red guys are shooting up the place, they’re mixed in with the white meaning any strike against them has a very great possibility of killing a whole bunch of civilians.
U.S. and allied warplanes on Wednesday aimed their attacks on Gaddafi’s ground forces in Misurata and other key cities but were constrained by fears that strikes in heavily built-up areas could cause civilian deaths.
“It’s an extremely complex and difficult environment,” said U.S. Navy Rear Adm. Gerard Hueber, the chief of staff for the coalition.
So that speaks to the limits of what the present plan (pure “no-fly zone”) can accomplish, especially considering the “no boots on the ground” promise by most of the coalition members, to include the US. Or so we’ve been told numerous times.
International aid organizations have been unable to deliver relief goods to Misurata and other contested towns. Asked whether the U.S. military might play a role in distributing emergency relief, one American official said, “All options are on the table.” He declined to comment further.
Oh. Wait. I thought that option was definitely off the table. Mission creep? Or maybe not, since no one has yet to be able to define the mission in any clear and understandable way. Not the goals of the UN resolution – the mission of the US military committed to the war in Libya.
It sort of works out like this – if you’re Libya, look out but if you’re Iran or China, don’t worry about it. Allahpundit explains:
Via Greg Hengler, it’s simple as can be. If (1) there’s a preventable humanitarian crisis looming and (2) the benefits of intervention outweigh the costs and (3) there’s international support for intervening, then “go for it.” Question: What if (1) and (2) are satisfied but not (3)? Just … let ‘em die, then?
For instance, how about Syria?
At least 10 people have been killed and dozens wounded after Syrian police opened fire on people protesting against the deaths of anti-government demonstrators in Deraa, witnesses say.
Hundreds of youths from nearby villages were shot at when they tried to march into the centre of the southern city.
A Syrian human rights activist told the BBC that at least 37 had died.
Troops also reportedly shot at people attending the funerals of six people killed in a raid on a mosque overnight.
Why that sounds almost exactly like things that happened in Libya prior to the international coalition finally taking action. Again, just as in Libya, we have “civilians” being killed by their government.
Time to apply the Obama Doctrine? Is that crickets I hear?
If you think that I’m making this up – about the Obama Doctrine that is – here’s Andrea Mitchell to explain it to you:
So who gets the full Monty and what popular uprising gets ignored by the doctrine? We know Iran gets a free pass. And apparently so does Syria. Who else?