In confirming his intention to contest the general elections on the PN ticket Simon Busuttil (SB) has slipped twice. This does not augur well for his bringing about change to the PN's dismal standings in current polls.
Firstly and rather immodestly, SB did not outrightly deny that he has party leadership ambitions but merely dismissed the claim that he is the anointed one.
His thesis that if he had party leadership ambitions it would have been better to join the parliamentary group after the elections makes little sense, unless he thinks that he can imitate Joseph Muscat in contesting leadership without having a parliamentary seat. Not having a parliamentary seat was a disadvantage for Joseph Muscat and it would be infinitely easier for SB to contest PN leadership with credentials of a solid performance at the polls in the the general elections.
But more serious is the claim made by SB that
"the country would be knocking on Europe’s doors for a bailout within a year or two if Joseph Muscat lives up to his promises"This is undiluted political scaremongering typical of the PN's DNA that they have a God given right to govern this country no matter how well or badly they perform. It is typical arrogance that we know best and the others are children of a lesser God.
Firstly the PN have been demanding PL to be specific about their policies in government as so far the only specific promise made by Joseph Muscat is to reduce utility rates without actually explaining the quantum involved. So how can SB deduce that with Labour's promises we would be asking the EU for a bailout within a year or two?
Secondly those who ask for a bailout are countries who finance their borrowing internationally. In Malta thanks to the people's strong culture of thrift, all financing is internally generated and gracefully the economy is liquid enough for our banks and households to have spare liquidity to invest in foreign securities. As I often explain to my followers I am not so concerned about the sustainability of our national debt because though we have a high public sector debt this is more than made up by private sector savings so that as a country we are net lenders not net borrowers.
So how can we be forced to demand a bailout, unless SB means to taunt a democratic mandate and from the Opposition as the new Leader of the PN would organise a policy of obstructionism asking the PN followers to draw their deposits from local banks to invest away from our shores in order to force the Malta government to seek a bailout.
SB had better explain what he meant and how he came to the conclusion that Labour would be forced to seek bailouts, as otherwise he has painted himself as a serious threat to democracy, which does not augur well at all.