Mouse countries

In human hierarchies and in national hierarchies, you have to KNOW YOUR PLACE. Status is innate and permanent among humans and among countries.

When you’re the mouse, you have to avoid pissing off the nearest cat.

Eastern Europe traditionally understood its mousy position, stuck between Germany and Russia. Those countries ALSO understood that America and Britain were NOT their helpers and saviors. America breaks all promises and pulls out the rug every time.

What we’re seeing now is a beautiful experiment. Belarus behaves correctly and prospers. Ukraine forgot those old lessons and decided to trust America. The result is drably predictable.

Some of the mice, including Ukraine, are trying a new fruitless futile monetary trick this year.

El Salvador, traditionally one of our pet mice, thinks it can be “independent” through bitcoin. Two American scammers spent a year there “educating” Bukele, and he followed their commands. Now he’s no better off; he has only wasted a bunch of time and money that he could have used to serve and solve his own problems.

Albania has tried monetary tricks often through Ponzi schemes, and tried a truly original idea once. In 1920, Greece and Italy were fighting over Albania as usual. (WHY? Shouldn’t they be fighting to LOSE Albania? You take it! No, you take it! No, I insist, it’s all yours!)

Albania tried to get out of this bizarre catfight by asking to be adopted. It simply offered itself for sale to the highest bidder among US millionaires. This could have been a genuinely good deal if Ford had taken the bet. He would have set up the country as a branch plant to produce wool and leather and minerals. He would have treated the employees well, with education and medical care and life-skill training. Unfortunately nobody took the offer, and Greece and Italy continued fighting over the stupidest prize in history.

The story was told in a 1949 episode of Passing Parade. I can’t find a complete version of the incident online, only this one brief squib in Time magazine:

Harry F. Sinclair, oil man, says: “A member of the Albanian Mission in Rome told an American newspaper reporter that a certain American millionaire (understood to be me) had just been offered the throne of Albania, in the hope that he can put the country on a sound financial basis.”

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