Greece voted against the bailout. F*** Them.

Stupid, whiny Greeks are elated that they will run out of money in a few days and probably go bankrupt.

I hear them proclaim that this vote was about protecting their “dignity.” Watch how dignified you are when you are bankrupt and no one will lend you money. You think unemployment is bad now?

I have no sympathy for a country that thinks money grows on trees and that government programs are sacrosanct. These people need to pull their head out of their ass. I hope they get kicked out of the Eurozone and get smacked in the face by the reality that you have to live within your means.

They will suffer, needlessly, for their “dignity.” Fuck them.

What about the people who voted for the bailout? Do you have sympathy for them?

They’ve already suffered a lot and will continue to suffer for quite some time.

I don’t disagree that ‘Greece’ is responsible for the country’s problems, but who actually called the shots? My understanding is that the Government cooked the books - basically lied - in order to enter the Zone. They would never have been admitted if the truth were known. IOW, because of their crooked leaders, the people will suffer more than they needed to.

Nothing new there.

(I should also add that, in any case, someone has to pay for the generation(s) of Greeks who paid little or no income taxes and who often enjoyed fully pensioned retirement at 50.)

I can see their point. Why should they pay their debts when when the outcome is just as harsh as not paying them? Why not stick it to your creditors, so they feel the pain also? I’m not saying it is the right thing to do, but I can see the reasoning.

I’ll bet PLUTUS is plenty pissed.

That’s a new twist on an old tale!

Here’s a nice summary of the crisis:

Q. How did we get here?

A. Long story. Greece’s economy was never strong enough to share a currency with Germany’s, but both sides pretended it was, as it satisfied Greek pride and Germany’s ambitions (suffused with war guilt) of building an ‘Ever Closer Union’ in a new, democratic Europe. Reckless lending by French and German banks allowed the Greeks to finance widening budget and current account deficits for six years, but private capital flows dried up sharply after the 2008 crisis, forcing Greece to seek help from Eurozone governments and the International Monetary Fund in 2010.

Q. But all that was 5 years ago. How has Greece not managed to turn the corner since then, when every other Eurozone country that took a bailout has?

A. Greece was the first country to ask for help, and the Eurozone was totally unprepared for it on all levels–political, technological, emotional, whatever. The IMF, too, had no experience of dealing with a country in a monetary union. Consequently, the bailout was badly conceived (a point admitted at the weekend by Dominique Strauss-Kahn, who was head of the IMF at the time), focusing too much on the budget balance and not enough on fixing Greece’s uniquely dysfunctional state apparatus. In a normal recession, government spending can offset the negative effects of private demand contracting, but in this case, the budgetary austerity drove Greece into a vicious spiral. The economy contracted by 25% between 2010 and 2014, fatally weakening Greece’s ability ever to repay its debts.

Q. But didn’t Greece already get a load of debt relief?

A. Yes, €107 billion of it in a 2012 debt restructuring, the biggest in history. But it was only private creditors–i.e., bondholders–who took the hit. The Eurozone and IMF refused to write down their claims (although they did soften the repayment terms), and the new bailout agreement was based on more assumptions (since exposed as too rose-tinted) that Greece could grow itself out of its troubles. The economy continued to shrink in absolute terms and unemployment shot over 25%, forcing an ever bigger burden of taxation onto fewer and fewer shoulders. That created the political environment for this year’s crisis.

[Of course, any first-year economics student knows that you can’t “grow yourself out of troubles” by running budget surpluses and using the money to pay off foreign debt. I mean, this is just arithmetic, after all. But Germany can’t admit that they screwed up because, well:]

full article

How much worse can it get? Following Germany’s advice their GDP is down 25 percent, pushing their debt/GDP ratio up even as their total debt has gone down (people always seem to focus on the numerator, forgetting the equal importance of the denominator), so that even the IMF says the situation is “unsustainable”, yet the Germans are insisting on more of the same–which is, quite literally, crazy.

  1. Read this.

  2. Shut up.

You don’t understand Greek culture and history. They don’t dance because they are happy, they dance even though they are sad.

They’ve been suffering. At least now they will suffer on their own terms.

Give everybody a bottle of Windex.

Should fix things right up.

This is the way I see it, too. Paying one’s debt is all good and virtuous, but at some point one has to come to terms with the fact that this debt can’t be paid off, and declare bankruptcy, take your licks, and eventually move on. Europe’s plan for Greece, to keep it indefinitely just solvent enough that it doesn’t default, wasn’t working.

Commentators like to put these things into human terms, like “proud spendthrift Greece” verses “austere responsible Germany” so you can root for one and boo the other, but the reality of the situation is less black-and-white than that.

There’s another potential perspective. Normally when a country suffers from the sort of problems that Greece does, the value of heir currency will drop. This encourages foreign investment. It’s cheaper to vacation there, cheaper to hire workers, and place manufacturing, etc. This often becomes the fuel for the recovery phase of the economic cycle. Because they are on the Euro with many other economies that are not in trouble, the euro stays reasonably stable, and this doesn’t occur. Greece stays in recession. Meanwhile, a booming economy like Germany would normally have their currency get more expensive. BMWs and Mercedes would cost a lot more. Because Germany is on the Euro with countries like Zgreece, Spain, and Italy that are not doing all that well the Euro stays stable, and exports are still easy for Germany.

In other words if you have several different economies sharing the same currency, the wealthiest of these will get wealthier and the poorest will get poorer.

According to Milton Friedman the economist, there is only one historical example to compare the Eurozone to, and that is pre civil war US. In that example, the industrial Northern States concentrated the wealth at the expense of the South. This is more or less the same thing that is happening in Europe now.

That the Greeks got themselves in trouble without anybody else’s help seems pretty certain. However, the Greeks may perceive the last several bailouts suspiciously. It is in Germany’s best interest to keep the Greeks on life support, in a perpetual state of crisis as this helps their exports.

No surprise considering the historical context, but this may very well be another example of Germany fucking over the rest of Europe for its own benefit.

This being the case, the Greeks current reluctance to accept aid, may seem not quite so stupid.

Personally, I think the Euro is doomed. They either need one government or separate currencies.

None of this is an excuse for Greece, or anything that I’m going to debate, just another viewpoint I’d read and decide to throw out there.

In 1846, the British complained in song about the nasty American habit of “repudiating debt.” To the tune of Yankee Doodle:

Yankee has some public works,
Well may he parade them.
English money paid for all
And Irish labour made them.

Then hey for Yankee Doodle’s luck,
And for Annexation.
Hey for Yankee Doodle’s pluck,
And for Repudiation!

Fucking whiner! Shut up.

Those wild colonial boys are such a terror. Please pass the port.

It’s tough to live in a democracy. 51% of the people get to make public policy.

In WWII, the Hiroshima bomb did not spare those Japanese who were personally opposed to the continuation of the war.

F*** “The Greeks” because of a Greek national public policy.

This is all obvious, elementary stuff. But here is the fun part - Greeks (75% of them according to polls) want to be “on the Euro”. But they also don’t want the stuff that comes with it - namely, the bad economy, austerity and high debt payments because of the inability to devalue currency. So they want to have the cake and eat it. Doesn’t work that way.

It is not the “reluctance to accept aid”. Greeks will quite happily accept aid. It is the reluctance to accept the conditions that come with the aid. As in “give us the money, but don’t tell us what to do”.

Hopefully, we’re not fucked along with them.

As Scylla pointed out in the portion you declined to quote, the dependence on a fixed value Euro that prevents currency fluctuations that would aid Greece has mre to do with it than simply not wanting to take orders. In the run up to the vote,an amazing number of Greeks still spoke of the desire to continue to using the Euro as they swallowed the propaganda of a united Europe. It appears that by the time the vote occurred, enough realized that holding the Euro was simply a way to enslave their country under false financing for years to come.
The (dumb) European austerity measures would have already bailed out Greece’s debt if they had not been tied to the fixed value Euro. Now, if they drop the Euro, they may have a chance to recover.

Yeah, but a country gets the leaders it deserves, and this has once more been proof of it. Spanish politicians are thieves in exactly the same ways in which Spanish non-politicians are, and apparently the Greek populace considers that cooking the books is the right thing to do and that other people should bail you out after the crockpot explodes.