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What's happening in Greece right now
#31
Vasilios Vazakas Wrote:I don't think Soros will alow a default, his purpose is to force France and Germany to accept a fiscal Union. They will take all our assets for nothing, plus they have targeted the natural gas and oil fields of the Aegean sea.

If Greece accepts "austerity", then Greeks assets and resources will be seized by foreign powers and foreign corporations.

If Greece defaults, it retains national sovereignty.

If the vultures want Greek assets and resources, they will have to launch a military invasion.

The Game will be exposed for what it is.

War.
"It means this War was never political at all, the politics was all theatre, all just to keep the people distracted...."
"Proverbs for Paranoids 4: You hide, They seek."
"They are in Love. Fuck the War."

Gravity's Rainbow, Thomas Pynchon

"Ccollanan Pachacamac ricuy auccacunac yahuarniy hichascancuta."
The last words of the last Inka, Tupac Amaru, led to the gallows by men of god & dogs of war
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#32
i agree with both of you, but our politicians are are sold to the banksters. I am convinced that the ex Prime minister papandreou is a Soros agent. is it a coincidence that both our Papademos and Italy's Monti are members of the trilateral commision?
They cannot invade Greece, so it had to be economic war. Unless they had us fight with Turkey. Which is unlikely since Greece and Israel have become partners.
Have to go to sleep now,Good night from Crete.
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#33
Vasilios Vazakas Wrote:They cannot invade Greece, so it had to be economic war.

Exactly, and what they are doing to Greece they plan to do to everyone. Why Greece is being chosen [lucky you!] to be extorted now is largely bad luck and 'throw of the dice', IMO. I have to think very hard to find the very few countries who's leaders are not owned by the banksters. Again, the Argentina model is the best 'out there', I think. Yes, they will use every ' economic weapon' they have and it will not be easy, but I think it is possible. Let's hope so - for Greece and all the rest of us who's leaders are owned by 'them'. Obviously, if there is to be a rebellion against the EU and their Banksters it will have to come from the People, and not from the political class. As the birthplace of modern democracy, you may well have a second shot at it [for yourselves and the rest of Humanity]!

NB - Occupy Greece has a channel one can often watch live - or replays of recent events here.
"Let me issue and control a nation's money and I care not who writes the laws. - Mayer Rothschild
"Civil disobedience is not our problem. Our problem is civil obedience! People are obedient in the face of poverty, starvation, stupidity, war, and cruelty. Our problem is that grand thieves are running the country. That's our problem!" - Howard Zinn
"If there is no struggle there is no progress. Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and never will" - Frederick Douglass
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#34
I think we were chosen because we were the weakest link, we had set up the right conditions
and symbolically Greece is the heart of Europe and the birth place of democracy.
You send a strong message when you attack a symbol.
We are still one of the few defiant countries in the western world.
However our problem through our history was that we have plenty of Efialtis.
Efialtis was the man who betrayed the 300 Spartans to the Persians at the hot gates.
And since then, the name Efialtis has been identified with the word traitor.
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#35
Vasilios Vazakas Wrote:I think we were chosen because we were the weakest link, we had set up the right conditions
and symbolically Greece is the heart of Europe and the birth place of democracy.
You send a strong message when you attack a symbol.
We are still one of the few defiant countries in the western world.
However our problem through our history was that we have plenty of Efialtis.
Efialtis was the man who betrayed the 300 Spartans to the Persians at the hot gates.
And since then, the name Efialtis has been identified with the word traitor.

Perhaps you [Hellas] were the easiest to 'pick on' and set as an 'example' - but they have in mind to do everyone, in the end! It seems they have a handful of countries they aim to pick on very soon, as well. Yes, Greece is a symbol and you resisted the 'Empire' when we imposed upon you the 'lovely' Dictatorship fo the Generals - this is not to be forgotten and your overthrowing them to be dealt with now. Greece will set the example for the other nations [all of them], so give your best shot! On a very personal note, I found my stays in Greece simply wonderful - great and cheap food, warm people and hospitality, beautiful Nature [Athens and a few other cities excepted], wonderful sun and sea, etc. I have a favorite island I fell in love with....and hope it is still there when I next go [wasn't sold or made into a prison colony].
"Let me issue and control a nation's money and I care not who writes the laws. - Mayer Rothschild
"Civil disobedience is not our problem. Our problem is civil obedience! People are obedient in the face of poverty, starvation, stupidity, war, and cruelty. Our problem is that grand thieves are running the country. That's our problem!" - Howard Zinn
"If there is no struggle there is no progress. Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and never will" - Frederick Douglass
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#36
I don't know if the people can carry this hge burden on their shoulders.
Which one is your favourite island?
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#37
I think it has been the Greek diaspora which has been sustaining much of the population there. There are certainly many Greeks here in Australia who have been sending money to their family there. But with further reduction in income and higher costs of living this is not going to be sustainable. I hope this will be the Argentinian moment for the Greeks and that they chuck out the useless eaters and Efialtis at the top and do it for themselves. Argentina and Iceland are better places for having told the bankers to shove it.
"The philosophers have only interpreted the world, in various ways. The point, however, is to change it." Karl Marx

"He would, wouldn't he?" Mandy Rice-Davies. When asked in court whether she knew that Lord Astor had denied having sex with her.

“I think it would be a good idea” Ghandi, when asked about Western Civilisation.
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#38
Another good site for video/livestreaming of what is happening in Greece LIVE: `Αγανακτισμένοι` στο Σύνταγμα (live streaming) here.
"Let me issue and control a nation's money and I care not who writes the laws. - Mayer Rothschild
"Civil disobedience is not our problem. Our problem is civil obedience! People are obedient in the face of poverty, starvation, stupidity, war, and cruelty. Our problem is that grand thieves are running the country. That's our problem!" - Howard Zinn
"If there is no struggle there is no progress. Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and never will" - Frederick Douglass
Reply
#39
Daily Telegraph Chief Financial Correspondent Ambrose Evans-Pritchard is a very spooky character.

He is also a hardline monetarist, and a deep political player.

He was the "journalist", or more accurately, weapon, launched at Bill Clinton in the 1990s.

His piece below is not without interest.


Quote:Germany's Carthaginian terms for Greece

The last time Germany needed a bail-out from world creditors, it secured better terms than shattered Greece last week.


By Ambrose Evans-Pritchard7:21PM GMT 12 Feb 2012

The US, Canada, Britain, France, Greece, and other signatories at the London Debt Agreement of 1953 granted Chancellor Konrad Adenauer a 50pc haircut on all German debt, worth 70pc in relief with stretched maturities. There was a five-year moratorium on interest payments.

The express purpose was to give Germany enough oxygen to rebuild its economy, and to help hold the line against Soviet overreach. This sweeping debt forgiveness caused heartburn for the British - then in dire financial straits, themselves forced to go cap in hand to Washington for loans. The Greeks had to forgo some war reparations.

Yet statesmanship prevailed. The finance ministers of the day agreed to overlook the moral origins of that debt, and the moral hazard of "rewarding" a country that had so disturbed the European order.

The Wirtschaftswunder whittled down the burden of German debts to modest levels within a decade. Germany emerged as a vibrant democracy and a pillar of the western security system.

Greece has less strategic relevance, and must comply with tougher terms.

The EU deal will in theory cap Greece's public debt at 120pc of GDP in 2020 - at the outer limit if viability - after eight years of belt-tightening and depression, if all goes perfectly.

Since nothing has gone to plan since Europe's austerity police began to administer shock therapy eighteen months ago, even this grim promise seems too hopeful.

The Greek economy was expected to contract by 3pc in 2011 under the original EU-IMF Troika plan. In fact it shrank by 6pc, and is now entering what the IMF fears could become "a downward spiral of fiscal austerity, falling disposable incomes, and depressed sentiment."

Manufacturing output fell 15.5pc in December. The M3 money supply crashed at a 15.9pc rate. Unemployment jumped to 20.9pc in November, up from 18.2pc the month before, and is already above the worse-case peak pencilled in by the Troika.

Some 60,000 small firms and family businesses have gone bankrupt since the summer, the chief reason why VAT revenues dropped 18.7pc in January. The violence of the slump is overwhelming the effects of fiscal retrenchment. So much Sisyphean effort for so little gain.

You can argue that Greece has dragged its feet on EU-IMF demands - though the IMF is careful not make such a crude claim, offering mixed praise in its last report.

But as Professor Vanis Varoufakis from Athens University says: "If we had better implemented the measures, the worse it would be: the economy would be comatose, and the debt-to-GDP ratio would be even more explosive."

So yes, like Germany accepting the terms of the Carthaginian Peace with a gun to its head in 1919, Greece signed "an insincere acceptance of impossible conditions" - to borrow from Keynes - hoping that sense would prevail with time.

Greece must cut 150,000 public sector jobs by 2015 under the latest accord, and fiscal policy will tighten by an extra 1.5pc of GDP beyond the squeeze already under way.

"There are another 50,000 shops and small businesses hanging on for dear life that are expected to collapse over the next six months," said Prof Varoufakis.

Premier Lucas Papademos pleaded for national unity the weekend. "We are just a breath away from ground zero. A disorderly default would set the country on a disastrous adventure. Living standards would collapse and it would lead sooner or later to an exit from the euro."

Well, perhaps, but remaining in EMU is also a disastrous adventure, and living standards will certainly collapse, which is why it ultimately makes no difference whether or not the Greek parliament backs the latest accord (I write before knowing the outcome of Sunday's vote).

The policy cannot command democratic consent over time. The once dominant Pasok party has collapsed to 8pc in the polls. Support is splintering to the far Left and far Right, just like Weimar Germany under the Bruning deflation.

The next Greek parliament will be packed with "anti-Memorandum" fire-breathers, and any attempt by Greek elites to prevent elections taking place must push street protests towards revolution.

In a sign of things to come, the Hellenic Police Federation has called for the arrest of Troika officials on Greek soil for attacks on "democracy and national sovereignty".

It is clear that Germany's finance minister Wolfgang Schäuble wishes to expel Greece from the euro, calculating that Euroland is now strong enough to withstand contagion, and that the European Central Bank's `Draghi bazooka' for lenders has eliminated the risk of a financial collapse.

"We can't keep sinking billions into a bottomless pit," he said on Friday.

Earlier he was caught on camera telling his Portuguese colleague that Lisbon can expect softer terms on its rescue package but only once Europe has dealt harshly enough with Greece to satisfy German public opinion.

Any slippage by Greece will be seized upon as a pretext to withhold the EU loans.

It is certainly arguable Greece has no hope of clawing back viability within monetary union and should therefore return to the Drachma.

While Ireland has pulled off an "internal devaluation" inside EMU by deflating wages, it has an open economy, a high trade gearing, and a current account surplus: Greece has a deficit of 9.4pc of GDP after four years of slump. Greece's "equilibrium real exchange rate" is overvalued by 33pc according to IMF data.

But that is not the argument made by Mr Schäuble. As high priest of the "household fallacy" - the false equation of macro-economics with the budget of a Schwabian Hausfrau - he thinks Greece is in trouble because it spends too much, not because it is trapped in debt deflation with a badly over-valued currency.

From there he progresses to the next fallacy of thinking that Portugal, Spain, and Italy will pull through as long as they cut, cut, and cut again.

If Portugal spirals down in much the same fashion as Greece once austerity bites in earnest - and therefore misses target after target - it is likely that Mr Schäuble will turn on Portugal with equal fury, because that is how he sees the world.

Each failure is ascribed to lack of moral fibre, not to the design flaws in the currency project that he himself helped create and foist on the German people against their wishes.

Belief that EMU fall-out from Greek exit - or "Grexit" in market slang - can be contained by firewalls and more fiscal austerity assumes that Greece is a special case, alone brought low by turpitude.

If you think, as I do, that Greece did indeed commit a host of sins but is also the first of several victims of a mad ideological experiment that shackled together economies with different growth rates, wage bargaining systems, productivity patterns, sensitivity to interest rates, and inflation proclivities - without fiscal transfers or sufficient labour mobility to cushion the effects - and that this disaster was compounded by Germany's (beggar-thy-EMU-neighbour?) wage squeeze, and compounded yet further by sharp monetary and fiscal contraction at the wrong moment in the states most at risk, then you will expect the crisis to grind on whatever happens in Greece.

The EMU end-game is harrowing for Greece, but it is also ghastly for Germany. Berlin has accumulated ruinous liabilities without yet solving anything, and is fast squandering sixty years of diligent statecraft.

By demanding a budget viceroy for Greece, and now an escrow account to seize Greek revenues at source, the Merkel-Schäuble government has crossed a diplomatic line and brutalised EU politics. "Memorandum Macht Frei", as one Greek newspaper splashed.

Would Konrad Adenauer ever have made such a blunder?
"It means this War was never political at all, the politics was all theatre, all just to keep the people distracted...."
"Proverbs for Paranoids 4: You hide, They seek."
"They are in Love. Fuck the War."

Gravity's Rainbow, Thomas Pynchon

"Ccollanan Pachacamac ricuy auccacunac yahuarniy hichascancuta."
The last words of the last Inka, Tupac Amaru, led to the gallows by men of god & dogs of war
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#40
2012-02-13 Athens burns: has #Greece entered its Argentina moment?
Submitted by FuturePress on Mon, 02/13/2012 - 19:09

Greece's political establishment trembles as banks and government offices burn amid violent anti-austerity riots. Has the country finally reached a tipping point?

Exactly ten years ago, the crisis-ridden country of Argentina spiraled into a bout of social unrest that would eventually lead to the largest sovereign default in history. After three years of being forced to swallow the bitter pill of IMF-imposed austerity, a tipping point was finally reached: foreign creditors and neoliberal governments had pushed the people too far. They rose up in defiance and ousted five successive Presidents in the space of just three weeks.

With the incredible images of flame-engulfed buildings and policemen emerging out of Athens, it now looks like Greece may be headed down the same path. The country has become ungovernable. Even though a majority of traitors was found to pass yet another deeply unpopular austerity package through Parliament, this weekend's violent protests indicate that the Argentina moment' may have arrived. The Greek people simply can't take any more austerity.

This weekend's 48-hour strike and mass demonstration witnessed some of the largest mobilizations in Greece to date. Even our weathered comrades inside Greece reported that the scale of the protests and the severity of the violence were some of the worst yet. With over 100,000 descending onto Syntagma Square, riot police desperately clung on to their perimeter as they were pelted with rocks and firebombs. The Guardian reported that:

More than 40 buildings were set ablaze in an orgy of looting that left scores injured as protesters vented their anger at the caretaker government and parliament's ordering of a further €3.3bn of savings by slashing wages and pensions and laying off public sector workers … Meanwhile street battles between police firing rounds of teargas and demonstrators hurling firebombs and marble slabs left Syntagma square, the plaza in front of the parliament building, resembling a war zone.

"The rebellion has begun," the Greek resistance hero and veteran left-winger Manolis Glezos told reporters. Indeed, as students and anarchists fought back waves of riot police assaults on the occupied University Law Department, as hundreds of outraged protesters took over a TV station, and as plumes of smoke and clouds of teargas filled up the Athenian night skies, one thing became overly clear: the social situation in Greece has spun entirely out of control.

Just before the weekend, the Guardian's veteran Greek correspondent, Helena Smith, wrote that she feared for a "social explosion", warning that the "Greeks can't take any more punishment." With poverty deepening, social inequality worsening, protests persisting and the economic situation only spiraling ever deeper into despair, "it is easy to see why, among politicians at least, there is little stomach for more."

A series of resignations by ministers on Friday, unwilling to support the latest measures, not only underlined the panic of the political class in a country where MPs no longer feel safe walking in the streets but proved how tenuous public support is for the bailout. If there is to be a social explosion, many said that it would come because Greeks had been pushed too far.

In my own PhD research, which compares the Argentine crisis of 2001-'02 to the Greek debt crisis, I am paying particular attention to the process through which the "impossible" at some point becomes "inevitable". In Argentina, two factors conspired to make a default and a massive devaluation of the peso both of which previously seemed heresy inevitable: massive popular protests combined with a willingness of foreign creditors to let Argentina fail.

In Greece, we appear to be approaching a similar tipping point. Six government ministers resigned this weekend, the far-right Laos party deserted the coalition, and over 40 lawmakers were sacked after they rebelled against the terms of the EU-IMF bailout. As the Guardian rightly concluded, "the scenes of mayhem on the streets of Athens and all across the country leave big questions unresolved regarding Greece's capacity to stick with the savage austerity."

Unlike two years ago, "when the angry graffiti demanded that the IMF go home' and reject austerity', it now exhorts protesters to murder bankers' and rise in rebellion' and never be slaves'. The spirit of resistance shows no sign of abating. With support for the left … growing by the day, opposition to any cost-cutting reforms is bound only to increase." As one opposition leader put it, "Martial law has to be imposed for these measures to be implemented."

At the same time, Greece's foreign creditors appear ever more willing to allow the country to default. Helena Smith has pointed out that, "as the talks [between Greece and its creditors] rolled on last week, a growing number of voices in the single currency's more stable "core" countries suggested they could manage without Greece … Some investors, too, argue that, because a default has been a possibility for many months, financial markets would take it in their stride."

Dutch Prime Minister Rutte who throughout this crisis has been playing hard-ball with Greece, usually followed a few weeks later in his radical neoliberal footsteps by Angela Merkel has already raised the possibility of a Greek exit from the eurozone. So have EU Commissioner Neelie Kroes and German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schauble. All in all, Greece's creditors appear to be preparing the ground for what they previously told us was "impossible".

Yet as the elites persist with their scaremongering just to buy themselves a little more time, at least the 82-year old WWII survivor Stella Papafagou won't be afraid of the "apocalyptic" consequences that Prime Minister warned of in Parliament today. "We've fought several times for liberation," she told the New York Times. "But this slavery is worse than any other. This is worse than the '40s. I would prefer to die with dignity than with my head bent down.
"Let me issue and control a nation's money and I care not who writes the laws. - Mayer Rothschild
"Civil disobedience is not our problem. Our problem is civil obedience! People are obedient in the face of poverty, starvation, stupidity, war, and cruelty. Our problem is that grand thieves are running the country. That's our problem!" - Howard Zinn
"If there is no struggle there is no progress. Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and never will" - Frederick Douglass
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