Normally one finds Raedwald a modicum of good sense, but on this occasion he has this quite wrong.
Make no mistake, this blog is a fierce opponent of nationalisation which is the ultimate expression of State Kleptocracy. Indeed the State should own very little compared with its present bloated inventory.
But it is, surely, entirely a matter for Hungary as a Sovereign Independent State (for now) and for the Magyars to decide whether or not to nationalise the tobacco retail market. The Government of Hungary was lawfully elected and it is entitled to govern.
Whilst some of what Fidesz has been up to is not to our taste, it remains none of our business if they wish to trash its tobacco market.
Raedwald complains of – and says we should be afraid as a result of – the failure of any EU Member State to register a complaint at what has been done.
Well this blog says: “Hooray!”.
For once the EU bully boys have kept their noses out of other people’s business. That is a change. In the UK most people would infinitely prefer it if the EU never told us what to do ever again.
The UK Independence Party consistently votes against such interference in the European Parliament (with the odd hiccup where voting ‘Yea’ is anathema and voting ‘Nay’ is likewise). If Norway wants to do a deal with the EU, what business is it of UK MEPs?
So, on this occasion, one may welcome this piece of non-interference.
Hungary is bonkers, of course. They have just created a brand-new retail sector in black-market tobacco. Nothing will change save some enterprising people are about to get very rich and Hungary will lose a whole bundle of revenue. But that is their choice and their mistake to make.