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Sat Jun 27, 2015, 02:19 PM

Has anyone followed the Greek situation

today? It seems that the Euro zone countries are
giving the Greeks the finger, because they are
upset about a referendum in Greece about any
agreement. What an acceptance of a democratic
decision.

24 replies, 1236 views

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Arrow 24 replies Author Time Post
Reply Has anyone followed the Greek situation (Original post)
sadoldgirl Jun 2015 OP
enlightenment Jun 2015 #1
jwirr Jun 2015 #2
Ironing Man Jun 2015 #3
BillZBubb Jun 2015 #9
former9thward Jun 2015 #12
BillZBubb Jun 2015 #13
former9thward Jun 2015 #15
BillZBubb Jun 2015 #16
former9thward Jun 2015 #20
BillZBubb Jun 2015 #21
former9thward Jun 2015 #22
Igel Jun 2015 #17
BillZBubb Jun 2015 #18
socialist_n_TN Jun 2015 #4
FLPanhandle Jun 2015 #7
OldEurope Jun 2015 #5
CK_John Jun 2015 #6
DCBob Jun 2015 #14
Divernan Jun 2015 #23
DCBob Jun 2015 #24
SoCalDem Jun 2015 #8
BillZBubb Jun 2015 #10
pampango Jun 2015 #11
Igel Jun 2015 #19

Response to sadoldgirl (Original post)

Sat Jun 27, 2015, 02:38 PM

1. Nothing reasonable about the troika's response to

Greece's new leftist government.

I prefer to think that Tspiras is giving the finger to the troika, not the other way around. I hope the Greek people hold firm; we'll see how the vote goes on the 5th.

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Response to sadoldgirl (Original post)

Sat Jun 27, 2015, 02:44 PM

2. You ask what happened to a democratic decision? It got lost in a trade agreement - the EU.

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Response to sadoldgirl (Original post)

Sat Jun 27, 2015, 02:50 PM

3. err...

no, the Eurogroup have not given the Greek government the finger because they've decided to hold a referendum on the terms of an - as yet - unagreed bailout, they've said that they will not give Greece additional time to hold a referendum before the current bailout ends.

the date of the end of the current bailout has been known for some years, and if the Greek government thought that a referendum was required on such an important issue perhaps they should, some months or even weeks ago, have schedualed a referendum to take place a few days before the end of the current bailout so that the Greek people could have made a decision about the proposed details of the new one.

they chose not to, and instead thought they'd be able to convince their lenders to support their political and economic analysis - which was proper 'are you high?' stuff - and about as likely Bernie Sanders picking Sarah Palin as his running mate. 3 days before the deadline, the Greek negotiating team left Brussels and called a referendum on the as-yet-unagreed new bailout for a full week after the old bailout had finished and the as-yet-unagreed new bailout stopped being available.

the point about democracy is something of a double-edged sword - if the Greeks should be asked whether they should accept a bailout, then the Germans should also be asked whether they should offer one. the opinion polls in Germany suggest that the answer would be a big, fat, resounding 'Łuc% off and die'.

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Response to Ironing Man (Reply #3)

Sat Jun 27, 2015, 04:43 PM

9. The Germans are the real a-holes here.

How soon they forget how, after WWII, they pleaded with the West to forgive their debt. The West did exactly that and the German economy was able to recover. Had it not been for that Germany would still be an economic mess.

The Greeks have never been offered a reasonable way out of their mess.

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Response to BillZBubb (Reply #9)

Sat Jun 27, 2015, 05:08 PM

12. Their debt was not forgiven.

It was stretched out over a number of years. The last payment was made in 2010.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/London_Agreement_on_German_External_Debts

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Response to former9thward (Reply #12)

Sat Jun 27, 2015, 05:20 PM

13. I believe a significant chunk (nearly half) WAS forgiven.

The rest was stretched out so much as to make repayment relatively painless.

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Response to BillZBubb (Reply #13)

Sat Jun 27, 2015, 05:24 PM

15. Well as the article pointed out the German economy was expanding so

rapidly that the debt payments did not really make any difference. I think the issue here is that French and German workers do not want to be taxed to pay for benefits in Greece that don't even exist in those countries. So if Greece wants to go off and finance itself with the drachma then so be it.

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Response to former9thward (Reply #12)

Sat Jun 27, 2015, 05:26 PM

16. I read the link. The Germans got an incredible deal.

Half the debt was forgiven. The rest to be paid back over thirty years. PLUS, no payments had to be made unless Germany had a trade surplus that year. WOW!

And the Germans are trying to stick it to Greece. Amazing.

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Response to BillZBubb (Reply #16)

Sat Jun 27, 2015, 05:46 PM

20. Why should German workers have to pay for benefits to Greece workers?

Benefits that German and France (who you are ignoring) do not have.

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Response to former9thward (Reply #20)

Sat Jun 27, 2015, 06:04 PM

21. The aren't paying for Greek benefits. The money is gone.

It is a sunk cost. If Greece cannot repay the debt, they get nothing.

They have to determine what the best path forward is for all concerned. Is it better to have a debt free Greece remain in the EU and have a chance to recover its economy? Or is it better to let Greece leave?

The German and French workers need to look at their leadership and determine who was foolish enough to make big loans to corrupt Greek regimes. And to find out why.

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Response to BillZBubb (Reply #21)

Sat Jun 27, 2015, 06:16 PM

22. I never thought the EU would work.

Europe has a long history and most of it has been conflicts. The EU was an artificial attempt to push it all together in order to compete with the U.S. You can't push people together and make them like one another. Greece should go.

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Response to BillZBubb (Reply #9)

Sat Jun 27, 2015, 05:26 PM

17. Yeah.

Meanwhile, in the East the Soviets took Konigsberg and pushed Poland west a hundred miles or so in a landswap: The USSR got Polish territory and kicked out the Poles, shifting the Polish borders into German land and having the Poles (under Soviet occupation) kick out the Germans.

Created hundreds of thousands of German refugees.

The German government involved in creating the mess also didn't so much borrow money to get it into its post-war mess as get squashed, bombed, invaded, with a large portion of their infrastructure destroyed and their manpower killed--their fault, ultimately. Esp. since that's a large part of what provoked WWII anyway and nobody wanted a weakened, impoverished Europe that might again hurtle towards war. Still, the WWI debts were included in the amount Germany owed, and the Marshall Plan monies were largely to be repaid.

About 50% of the outstanding debt was forgiven. The rest was paid off. It should also be mentioned that the forgiveness brought the percentage of loans versus grants made to Germany in line with what other Marshall Plan recipients got. Like Greece. Germany long since paid off that debt.

Moreover, Germany also inherited East Germany, which didn't get reindustrialized to nearly the same extent under the Soviets as West Germany did under the Marshall Plan. That internal "Marshall Plan" isn't done and gobbled up billions of marks.

Greece took in a lot of loans. It let its economy be corrupt and inefficient. A lot of the money was investment, but instead siphoned off and not used as intended. Moreover, it started from a lower economic base in the first place, even though it had all the amenities and social niceties of a more advanced, more industrialized economy and used money to maintain its standard of living (so to speak). If it wants to be forgiven, I say let's repeat the aftermath of WWII: Let Britain and the US occupy Greece, execute its leaders or imprison them, restructure the economy and political system and rebuild it on the ruins of the old economy. Then add up the old debt and the new debt, knock about 50% off the stop, and set up a 30-year repayment plan.

We'll skip the bit about taking a chunk of its territory and relocating the Greek population to create a massive refugee crisis. The Turks already did that.

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Response to Igel (Reply #17)

Sat Jun 27, 2015, 05:36 PM

18. Who made the loans to a corrupt and inefficient country? And why?

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Response to sadoldgirl (Original post)

Sat Jun 27, 2015, 02:52 PM

4. Well one thing to remember, it's the capitalists and the bankers that.......

are giving the finger to Greek democracy, NOT the workers of Europe. If the Trioka forces Greece out of the EU over the explicit wishes of a majority of Greek people, I think that Europe explodes in worker unrest. European workers are nearly as tamed as American ones are.

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Response to socialist_n_TN (Reply #4)

Sat Jun 27, 2015, 03:24 PM

7. Not a chance

The workers in Germany and France are not thrilled to see their taxed Euros paying for Greek benefits they don't even get.

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Response to sadoldgirl (Original post)

Sat Jun 27, 2015, 02:54 PM

5. There is no democratic decision, yet.

On German TV I just watched a feature, where they interviewed some Greeks waiting in a line for a cash machine. They were as astonished as the rest of Europe. Obviously, Varoufakis just pulled the referendum out of his sleeve in the middle of the night, without informing the Greek before. So I, too, feel that this was just his last straw.

I don't like the German government, and did never vote for any of them. They made many mistakes in this. But Greek governments have been failing for so many years and in so many levels that it seems impossible for the EU to do anything as long as the Greek do not even start to change things in a healthy direction. Corruption and nepotism and greed have ruined Greece, and everybody knew it. Tsipras and Varoufakis know this and they were elected because they promised to stop this. But they don not do anything except offending other country's elected politicians.
Did you know, that shipping companies don't have to pay taxes at all? And everyone else can escape from taxation with some bribe and a trip to Switzerland. When that banker informed authorities in European countries about many cases of tax fraud some years ago, there were also many Greek on this list. What did the Greek do about that? They ignored it to this day.
Tsipras and Vaoufakis seem like populist gamblers with no real will to improve anything. They just want to pose as saviours and show themselves as tough and strong. Pathetic fail.

I'm not Greek, but I have had quite a number of friends and neighbours form Greece, and I visited Greece several times. I love Greece.

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Response to sadoldgirl (Original post)

Sat Jun 27, 2015, 03:22 PM

6. The Greek is the perfect example of a bombastic politician promising more than they

can deliver.

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Response to CK_John (Reply #6)

Sat Jun 27, 2015, 05:24 PM

14. Sounds a bit like..

Bernie.

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Response to DCBob (Reply #14)

Sat Jun 27, 2015, 11:05 PM

23. DCBob escapes a smack down by 1 vote.

AUTOMATED MESSAGE: Results of your Jury Service

Mail Message
On Sat Jun 27, 2015, 10:45 PM an alert was sent on the following post:

Sounds a bit like..
http://www.democraticunderground.com/?com=view_post&forum=1002&pid=6914558

REASON FOR ALERT

This post is disruptive, hurtful, rude, insensitive, over-the-top, or otherwise inappropriate.

ALERTER'S COMMENTS

Should be in GD P

You served on a randomly-selected Jury of DU members which reviewed this post. The review was completed at Sat Jun 27, 2015, 11:00 PM, and the Jury voted 3-4 to LEAVE IT.

Juror #1 voted to LEAVE IT ALONE
Explanation: The thread is about the Greek Situation. Save your powder.
Juror #2 voted to LEAVE IT ALONE
Explanation: Alerter--you are alerting on a post that is within the BODY of the thread. If you have a complaint about where a thread belongs (GDP v GD), you need to alert on the post that starts the thread. Also, you might want to alert to a host, rather than try to get someone's post hidden.
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Explanation: Obvious troll is obvious.
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Explanation: Yes, the comment was petty, gratuitous and snarky - trying to sneak in a hit on Bernie outside of the GD-P zone.
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Response to Divernan (Reply #23)

Sat Jun 27, 2015, 11:47 PM

24. sweet!

I have no idea why that comment would be considered hideable?? Its snarky but whats wrong with that?? Whoever alerted needs to chil the fk out.

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Response to sadoldgirl (Original post)

Sat Jun 27, 2015, 03:50 PM

8. Too many previous adminsitrations had willingly accepted too many risky loans

from the IMF.. Shame on the IMF (Eurozane) for goading them into loans they could never afford to pay back.. NOW they had someone in charge who did not personally agree to ANY of the past fiscally dangerous schemes and he says NO..

Suck a lemon IMF !!!

Iceland told them to go F themselves and nothing bad happened..

If you cannot pay,,,you just cannot pay.. It's simple.

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Response to SoCalDem (Reply #8)

Sat Jun 27, 2015, 04:47 PM

10. Agreed. The Greeks have to resist any austerity plan.

The lenders should never have propped up crappy Greek governments with loans. They were as bad as the bankers in our last mortgage debacle here.

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Response to sadoldgirl (Original post)

Sat Jun 27, 2015, 04:49 PM

11. It must be frustrating to negotiate with government officials with the understanding

that they have the authority and intention to accept or reject an agreement at some point. Then late in the negotiations they announce that they have not such power or intention.

I suppose that if the shoe were on the other foot and an agreement that Greece liked was near and the negotiators from Germany and other creditor countries announced that they did not have the power or intention to approve the deal but would submit any agreement to a series of referenda.

If any or all sides had announced in the beginning that any agreement would go before voters, my guess is the negotiations would have gone differently. Neither side should belatedly come up with an "Oh, by the way. I forgot to mention. Any agreement we sign will have to go before our voters as a referendum rather than being approved by the government and then we have to face our voters at the next election."

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Response to sadoldgirl (Original post)

Sat Jun 27, 2015, 05:41 PM

19. Other way around.

Tsipras has been flipping the Eurozone the bird every chance he gets. It'll take a lot of good will on both sides to come to a compromise that's workable, and all Tsipras has done is show ill will and, with this call for a referendum, bad faith.

What's got him spooked were the surveys showing that while he and his supporters are all about exiting the Euro, most Greeks were against it. Then the banking system started to unravel and was saved only by the announcement of a likely deal--which triggered a revolt among his supporters.

He was stuck with a revolt that would make him rely on his political enemies for the deal, and probably end his power and possibly his government and blacken SYRIZA's name. Or doing what his supporters wanted and exit the Euro, making sure that SYRIZA's name was permanently engraved on the default and crash of the banking system--with any bailout from some 3rd party that might or might not include some hefty strings, but which would constitute a very large political shift that hadn't been discussed.

Now, a shift towards Russia would play reasonably well in some ways with the anti-EU sentiment among his supporters. However, Russia is big into Orthodox identity folk in Greece and there are more ultranationalist New Dawn supporters behind Russia and the DNR/LNR than there are Communists. That pairing of nationalism and Communism may work well in Russia and in the Donbas, but does not work for SYRIZA.

Tsipras did not think that being a flippant asshole would lead him to this. "Stand up to bullies," his mother probably said, "and they'll back down." Except that in this case the bullies own a bunch of paper that says Greece is heavily and voluntarily indebted to the bullies.

The best defense is idiocy: "I'm sorry, we took out those loans because we were idiots and greedy and really thought that somebody would save our asses. Our experts should have looked at them and understood, but our experts have an average IQ of 32. 32.418, to be precise. Give or take 18 points." Which is what people mean when they say the Greeks were goaded into taking the loans, basically saying, "Meh, they're Greeks. Offer them money and their brains turn off, but what can you expect from those people ... They're Greeks."

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