Tuesday, 22 March 2011

Flashback: EU commission president José Barroso


This video shows young José Manuel Barroso as a passionate maoist student leader in 1976 in Portugal:

Times - and Mr. Barroso - have changed. Now the President of the Commission of the European Union enjoys to be seen in somewhat different company:

But life is not always 100% rosy for this bureaucrat, who was not elected by the people of Europe:

And this handshake the President probably would like to forget:

Handshake between José Manuel Barroso, President of the EC, and Muammar al-Gaddafi, Guide of the Great Revolution of the Great Socialist People's Libyan Arab Jamahiriya (official EU caption)

Some (de facto) dictators are still very acceptable "strategic partners", although the Russians, according to cables leaked by Wikileaks, do not seem to hold Mr. Barroso in very high regard:

               In good mood after an excellent lunch (not official EU caption)

Of course, the salary (on the same level as US president Obama´s 400.000 USD a year) and all the other benefits and perks (e.g. a retirement pension, equivalent of up to 70 percent of their final commission salary, from the age of 65, and a golden parachute system for former commissioners, under which they can get up to 65 percent of their salary for three years after leaving their post.) makes it a little bit easer for the former maoist to endure some of the less enjoyable moments on the job.

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