Birds Blamed for Fiscal Deficit
The Romanian government is facing difficult times. The nation’s finances are in poor shape and the targets for reducing the budget deficit are not likely to be met. The situation is clearly placing an enormous strain on members of the ruling coalition.
But salvation could be at hand! In a somewhat bizarre outburst, Varujan Vosganian of the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats, has announced that he knows how to rectify the country’s financial problems.
According to Mr. Vosganian, Romania’s financial woes have been caused by chickens! Specifically, the chickens in people’s backyards.
A Shortfall in Tax Revenues
Yes! A leading Romanian politician is blaming chickens for the country’s inadequate tax revenues. Those awful people who keep chickens in their yards and produce their own food are robbing the national purse of taxes because they are not purchasing these foodstuffs in shops. Every egg which emanates from a backyard hen deprives Romania of 0.5 lei in taxes and also robs the country’s farmers of much-needed income.
Growing your own food and keeping livestock is evidently an incredibly selfish thing to do and extremely unpatriotic.
Eggs and Jam
In his unprecedented rant, the politician went on to say that the Romanians who produce their own food are costing the county millions. Their activities rob agricultural workers of income and this further impacts tax revenues.
He justified his remarks by pointing out that in countries where tax revenues are equal to or greater than 45% of GDP, people do not keep chickens or make their own jam. Is this man from another planet?
The Chicken and the Egg
It doesn’t seem to have occurred to him that people might be subsistence farming because they can’t afford to buy the food in the shops. If they didn’t have any chickens, they still might not buy any eggs due to lack of funds.
Mr Vosganian has served as Romania’s Minister of the Economy no fewer than three times. After his outburst, he said that his comments may have been "too abstract." Well, that’s one way of describing his ideas.
Chickens in the UK
It would be interesting to see what the public reaction would be in the UK if there was a ban on keeping of chickens and the growing of vegetables in gardens and allotments was outlawed. What would happen if we weren’t allowed to forage for berries or fish for our suppers?
It is hard to imagine that a nation could be brought to its knees by chickens. Perhaps the Minister for the Economy should take a closer look at the huge increases in public spending which have occurred in Romania recently. Or were they the chickens’ fault as well?