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The Greek Saga

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Captain Vancouver View Drop Down
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    Posted: 13 Jul 2015 at 01:57
Well, the Greek tragedy continues, with tensions running high, deadlines missed, finance ministers stamping about with indignant expressions, and angry retribution threatened. 

But who is really at fault here is less clear than the Acropolis on a smoggy day. Sure, corruption and tax evasion happened in Greece. Some of this, I understand, has been modified. Debt still hangs large over that small country however, but- and here is a key point- how should we apportion blame?

If questionable developer A secured loans from slippery banker B, for projects not that likely to pay back, but were thought by both to be rather irrelevant, as someone else could always pick up the tab, then, in some virtual financial court of justice, who is to blame? Hmmm? How would you divide the liability? Because that's about what happened.

Today the financial sector of the economy holds a place unknown to past generations. It used to be an essential, though perhaps auxiliary function of society, one that employed a modest section of the workforce, and not always its brightest sparks. Today it reigns supreme, urging all to believe that if not Nirvana, it is certainly the center for all to exert effort to migrate to, with no small measure of success in this goal. But ultimately, all economic questions are political ones, a point I subscribe to.

We can also consider the rather unseemly, in terms of maintaining European unity and integrity, though historically correct fact that when Germany was on the ropes post WW2, its former victims agreed to cut German national debt by 50%. Perhaps this is an era current German officials might like to push under the table, and have forgotten.

What do history buffs here think?



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franciscosan View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote franciscosan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 Jul 2015 at 05:08
I'm not sure that the question of how to apportion the blame is a useful one.  I think that the question is how to get out of this mess, especially since it is not only Greece but also Portugal, Italy and Spain.

Whatever Europe does, they want to fix the problem, not have it drag on, not have it pop up again later.  The problem is that they have a united currency, but the different capitals have different monetary policies, at least that is my simple understanding of it.

"economics" in ancient Greek means 'the custom of, or how to run a household.'  A husband was supposed to teach his young bride "economics" and then get out of her way allowing her to manage what he brought in.   A man on the other hand, had his role to play in the government of the polis, or politics. 
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wolfhnd View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote wolfhnd Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 Jul 2015 at 06:33
"We can also consider the rather unseemly, in terms of maintaining European unity and integrity, though historically correct fact that when Germany was on the ropes post WW2, its former victims agreed to cut German national debt by 50%. Perhaps this is an era current German officials might like to push under the table, and have forgotten."

It could be argued that Germany and Japan were both given many breaks after WWII because of the Soviet Threat.  It's also clear that both Germany and Japan make good economic use of the breaks they were given.  It may be useful to compare the economic success of Germany and Japan to the relative failure of Puerto Rico which have also been given much assistance.

46 percent of Puerto Rico's working age men have jobs compared to 76 percent in the U.S. .  Overall employment for Germany is 60 percent, U.S. 64 percent and Puerto Rico 40 percent.   Welfare payments make up 20 percent of Puerto Rico's personal income and if you include the island’s unfunded pension liabilities and the debt of its public enterprises, debt to GDP radio is 150 percent which is not particularly high compared to other countries but it is important to remember that a high percentage of the government spending in Puerto Rico's comes from the U.S. .  There are many unique reasons for underemployment in Puerto Rico not the least of which is U.S. policy still the numbers are interesting.

The comparisons to Puerto Rico were prompted by remarks made by German finance Minister Schäuble who chided U.S. policy makers interference by proposing that the  Eurozone would take in Puerto Rico, if the U.S. would allow Greece to adopt the U.S. dollar.

I have no doubt that the two big to fail bankers have had there share in responsibility for the Greek problem but that does not explain the relative discrepancies between Greece and other countries faced with the same problems.


Edited by wolfhnd - 13 Jul 2015 at 06:37
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franciscosan View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote franciscosan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 Jul 2015 at 06:05
I once saw a movie, it was a terrible movie, but it had an interesting premise.  A woman borrowed a million dollars from a local bank and threatened to default.  The bank had to prop her up in order to keep solvent.  Sounds like what Greece was (implicitly) threatening to do.  

I don't blame Greece for wanting to wriggle out of their current position, but I tend to feel they did things that got them into that position.  What is it, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure?

Welfare is not well, whether it is in Greece or Puerto Rico, it may be the best of bad options, but it is a bad option.  I am glad that I am not in Greece, nor the rest of the Euro-zone.  I would equally hate being in Germany or France working on the other end of the "bargain."
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Fintan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 Aug 2015 at 00:38
Hello Captain

In this theme, in what Spain is involved, and the Euro, and the so selfcall European Community.

The first  to understand this is take a look at the History,

All begins much before the WWII but this  good showing of what happen now.

Grecce is not an European country because of the people nature, that comes from centuries of  subjugation to the Turkish that only in the 19th centurie was finished with the help and simpaty of many europeans (Lord Byron, who was killed fighting by independence of Greece), romanticism pure and the dead. More or less about three centuries of domination by the turkish and the Islam. Also the religion of Greelks comes from Byzantium, they are orthodox, not Roman (protestant comes from Roma too) and the population is in part slave and not from old greeks origin.
 Also they have been used in the cold war paying his startegical situation after WWII with many money, USA I mean. Then they have other mentality  (this has say me by greeks and I have been in Grece.
They are used to live without work too much, and this is not what you usually meet in Europe, even in east Europe. Now the tap has been cut and nothing rest behind. Greece have not democratic  habits and they are been fooling by profesional impostor that don't know what to do or make and what happen. They had a dream and now have a nightmare, Obama don't want to pay the bill and now the greeks are going to probe the real world (I mean in this part of world is Germany) in all his hardness, more than in WWII because they have nothing only european creditors that are very angry with Greek diplomacy, that could made his origins in Agamenón and Troya. This is a joke. 

It is hour to take away the mask and now the banks are Eruope (also call the CE), as Russia isn't Europe, and even Europe is not Europe, is Germany Ltd. A not democratic Germany, that never was clean of nazis under penalty of dissapear (Patton thinks that) and if Germany dissapear, Russia wins Europe (I can't imagine how cause they are idle at the moment and didn't have the nuclear bomb).
Well, Germany have the same great oligarchy that Hitler save of SA revolution (Krupp, IG Farben, Thyssen) and the same regiment that lift the austriac to power in Alemania. Not the same economic situation at all, by now. And Germany is plenty of socialdemocracy, remember the new freekorps that kill
by example to Rosa Luxemburgo y Karl Liebknecht and betray the worker class better than the same Nazis. All under a socialdemocrat canciller.

(I only want freedom for Sapnish Nation and after Europe and the world, no other thing)

Next time I will try to talk about Spain, the  german socialdemocracy and their spanish henchmen and how Spain was entry to "Europe" with the condition of beenplucked by the european social-democratic pirates.

If you let me of course.

If somebody read that, please excuse my bad english (and good spanish).





Edited by Fintan - 26 Aug 2015 at 00:43
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Fintan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 Aug 2015 at 08:20
The german social democracy:

It likes Germany has not political weight, this is for France in Europe. This is an artificial way to make thinks because Germany has the money and the economical power. In special with the euro she control the Central European Bank cause the euro is based in the Bundesmark.
It is knows that to have centralized the economy, have to  be a central politic power as less strong, that give coherence to the whole. But here, in Europe, with the euros we have diferents ways to govern, not to think (nobody thinks here), in the jail Germany controls. 
Then Germany is each day reacher with more money to borrow and greece, Spain, Portugal and other oligachies obey the  Big Oligarchie without any complain, even Greece. And as far as they obey Germany and get more and more money (not gratis at all) they are more poors and more in debt. It is a play of oligarchies and people. The people need to sack their politics to make up a system problem, not a goverment problem but they don't know cause the mass media are in hands of holigarchy. It don't go against german people that is a victim too.

I don't know if it can be understood or not...



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franciscosan View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote franciscosan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 Oct 2015 at 05:45
Once upon a time there was an ant and a grasshopper....
Grasshoppers play all Summer long, and then freeze.
ants work all Summer long, and prepare for the Winter.

But now you say that what is just is for the Grasshopper to play all Summer long, and then be taken care of by the ant.  From outsider's perspective that is what it looks like for PIGS (Portugal, Italy, Greece, Spain).  Of course, it is more complicated than that, Germany has tied itself to the others through the European Union.  If the PIGS commit economic suicide, Germany will suffer as well.

Why should we not just believe that your insinuation that Germany is a bunch of Nazis, is just sour grapes?  [the fox trying to reach some grapes, couldn't and finally declared that they were probably sour anyways.]  Germany is not willing to issue out blank checks to the governments that seem fiscally irresponsible, without those governments making economic concessions.  What Germany is doing seems to make sense, the first thing one does for someone who is bleeding, is to stop the bleeding.  Am I correct about that? is that sensible advise? and is that what is going on?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote wolfhnd Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21 Oct 2015 at 09:09
Originally posted by franciscosan franciscosan wrote:

 What Germany is doing seems to make sense, the first thing one does for someone who is bleeding, is to stop the bleeding.  Am I correct about that? is that sensible advise? and is that what is going on?

Germans are such practical stoic people but they forget other people don't share their world view.  Ask a Greek what is more important to work hard and meet your obligations or to "live life to the fullest".  They may not be mutually exclusive views but emotions often translate into politics at some crude level.
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