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1
Dom  Jul 12, 2015 • 12:15:24pm

The plan is not as incendiary as your description of it - there is indeed deep scepticism about relations that amount to a Franco-German EU axis, evident in any negotiation over subsidies and exemptions, but in this instance Germany cannot set a precedent of being easy on an EU state that doesn’t respect the financial rules. There is a north-south split within Europe, responsible economies and essentially relaxed, maybe corrupt ones. The UK rejected the Euro primarily because of these unstable economies, not because of concern about Germany. Greece is getting schooled in adherence to basic rules: you can’t go cap in hand time after time with no plan and no intention to meet repayments, and then consider yourself entitled to negotiate, well, anything whatsoever. They are being asked to tax their wealthy and cut their spending, which is the bleeding obvious. I am not sure on what basis Syriza was trusted by the Greeks to subvert that basic trait of any honest broker.

2
Eigth Immortal  Jul 12, 2015 • 12:20:23pm

re: #1 Dom

It’s probably the same problem you often see in groups. Not enough Greeks understood what Syriza or anyone else could and couldn’t do to address Greece’s actual problems. Hell, if I were a Greek citizen, I don’t know who I’d vote for.

3
Dom  Jul 12, 2015 • 12:33:29pm

You’re right, we recently voted in the UK and I still can’t say I fully understand (read:trust) any of them!

4
aagcobb  Jul 12, 2015 • 2:24:13pm

re: #1 Dom

The plan is not as incendiary as your description of it - there is indeed deep scepticism about relations that amount to a Franco-German EU axis, evident in any negotiation over subsidies and exemptions, but in this instance Germany cannot set a precedent of being easy on an EU state that doesn’t respect the financial rules. There is a north-south split within Europe, responsible economies and essentially relaxed, maybe corrupt ones. The UK rejected the Euro primarily because of these unstable economies, not because of concern about Germany. Greece is getting schooled in adherence to basic rules: you can’t go cap in hand time after time with no plan and no intention to meet repayments, and then consider yourself entitled to negotiate, well, anything whatsoever. They are being asked to tax their wealthy and cut their spending, which is the bleeding obvious. I am not sure on what basis Syriza was trusted by the Greeks to subvert that basic trait of any honest broker.

They turned to Syriza out of desperation because the politics of EU imposed austerity has left Greece mired in a deep economic depression. Syriza didn’t create the crisis; it occurred under previous Greek governments. The blame isn’t entirely with the Greeks; creditors should’ve known that Greece was a fundamentally less credit worthy government than Germany, but they lent to Greece like it was Germany anyway. The fundamental problem is that there is a much bigger difference in wealth between Greece and Germany than there is between any two US states and no automatic stabilizers to send money where it is needed as with the US, so Greece really needs a different currency than Germany to reflect the very different economic situations between the two countries. inflicting massive suffering on the Greek people to intimidate other southern countries into toeing the line seems incredibly unfair to the Greek people.

5
Dom  Jul 12, 2015 • 2:40:43pm

re: #4 aagcobb

The blame isn’t entirely with the Greeks; creditors should’ve known that Greece was a fundamentally less credit worthy government than Germany, but they lent to Greece like it was Germany anyway. The fundamental problem is that there is a much bigger difference in wealth between Greece and Germany than there is between any two US states and no automatic stabilizers to send money where it is needed as with the US, so Greece really needs a different currency than Germany to reflect the very different economic situations between the two countries.

This has long been true - well said. They can go bankrupt then, but they ostensibly at least don’t want to.

6
cinesimon  Jul 12, 2015 • 2:50:55pm

re: #1 Dom

Thing is, the ‘reforms’ they’re demanding are those which will make repayment more difficult than ever. And most of them know it.
It’s a very sick game. And I’m sorry but you’re presenting a very squeaky clean, black and white argument that just isn’t reality.
You really think they should make their economy worse? Just because a bunch of right wingers call it ‘reform’?

7
Dom  Jul 12, 2015 • 4:29:51pm

I’m not here to shill for the world economy. But the conditions for further credit are some plan to repay it. No?

8
Eric The Fruit Bat  Jul 12, 2015 • 5:44:40pm

I don’t think there’s anything in the EU charter that allows for a temporary ‘Grexit’-I think this is just some wishful thinking on the Germany finance minister’s part.

Looks like the great Euro experiment is about to start to wind-down in a very uncontrolled fashion.

9
Romantic Heretic  Jul 12, 2015 • 6:54:47pm

I’ll just repeat two things I’ve said before.

1. Austerity is the economic equivalent of bleeding. It’s based on the idea that nations must suffer to get well. Like bleeding it does have something resembling resembling a positive effect, because the patient is weaker. The fever goes down and they stop shivering. But they’re not well.

Bleeding killed George Washington. It can kill countries as well.

2. Now the only thing left to find out is who runs Greece when the current political system falls apart; the Fascists or the Communists. I personally don’t think their current form of government can stand the pressure. When democratic systems fall authoritarian ones rush in to fill the gap.

Finally, if the EU does fall apart there will be wild parties in boardrooms around the world. Europe is hard to push around. It’s too big a market and corporations can’t afford to lose access to that market.

Smaller countries, even economic powerhouses like Germany, are much easier to manipulate and control.

10
LastYearsMan  Jul 12, 2015 • 9:50:22pm

It’s first and foremost an exchange rate problem, not a debt problem. If Greece (and Spain, Portugal, Italy, etc.) had their own currency to devalue, the crises of the past few years could have been quite solvable. If the Germans were willing to put up with some inflation, the problems could have been solvable. But the Germans have gotten rich off of overinvesting in southern Europe, and now they’re refusing to admit that they are just as much a part of the problem as the south.

What’s German for assholes?

(Edit: sorry for the rant. All imho, of course. But it really pisses me off, what’s happening in Europe).


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