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The Great people of Greece.


bobby47
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Sometime in the next twelve hours something highly significant is going to happen to all of us and I think it's wonderful.

Thank you Greece, thank you to all men and women born Greek and thank you to Syriza the far left party that looks increasingly likely to win the Greek election and have a majority that'll enable them to form a Government.

For those of you that aren't familiar with this modern day European Union 'tragedy,' this Greek working class party want at least half their debt to the EU wiped out and they want an immediate end to the austerity economic programme that was forced upon this proud people by the mandarins of Brussels, the IMF and the German Chancellor.

Since the negotiated loan agreement with the EU and the IMF, the Greek economy has shrunk by a full quarter and over 25% of its citizens are unemployed with absolutely no chance whatsoever of ever getting another job in their lifetimes. Factor all this in with high inflation, poverty levels that are beyond our imagination, a national feeling of hopelessness and no fear of consequences because the worst has already happened to these great people, they've voted for Syriza and I couldn't be happier.

If as I hope the Germans and the rest of the EU refuse to reduce the debt and give the green light to end the austerity programme the Greek people will walk away from the EU. They'll go it alone, they'll bring back the drachma and despite the pain that'll be visited upon them, they'll do it, they'll be happy doing it and be content in the knowledge that their destiny is back in their own hands and they will decide what is best for themselves rather than some faceless bureaucrats from the IMF and the EU.

If however Syriza, manage to negotiate a reduction in debt then that makes me happy as well, because then the Italians, the Portuguese and the Irish will want the same. This then pretty much means, more and more quantative easing, an end to gathering in more weak economies like Albania and Belarus, less expansionistic EU policies, less chance of further conflict behind the old iron curtain and more and more likely that the Euro will eventually go belly up and then we can draw a line under this mad social engineering experiment that is the European Union.

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I think the situation in Greece, Spain, Portugal, Italy and elsewhere can be summed up as "squeeze someone until the pips squeak" which translates in any language as extract the maximum amount of money from someone. Even works here in the UK. The problem is it is the ordinary worker who suffers regardless of political party. After all where does this money come from, but thin air? It is the creditability of the bankers that will take a knock and the establishment has been told to sort it out or to go down with the ship. However the Brits love to suffer instead of removing the real problem which is get power back from our political classes.

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The change is happening in Spain also. Look up Podemos (We can). Also they are beginning to prosecute corrupt officials and local mayors - over 2000 to date, and even have a princess on trial for fraud.

 

The rise of Syriza can’t just be explained by the crisis in the eurozone: a youthful generation of professionals has had enough of tax-evading oligarchs.
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Greece is a corrupt, elitist society where tax-evasion is applauded. Since the crisis, more people were found to be owning Porsches than were declaring €40k euros income. That's not to mention the shipping magnates who operate tax-free!

 

Greece should never have been allowed to join the EU. Let them go - but make them pay their debts!

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Greece is a corrupt, elitist society where tax-evasion is applauded. Since the crisis, more people were found to be owning Porsches than were declaring €40k euros income. That's not to mention the shipping magnates who operate tax-free!

 

You're not talking about the ordinary Greek Harry are you? Most of the elite's money is "invested" here in the UK in London property. Let the elite pay it back instead of passing it down to the peasants after all David Cameron said we were all in this together except when it comes to paying it back.

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Greece is a corrupt, elitist society where tax-evasion is applauded. Since the crisis, more people were found to be owning Porsches than were declaring €40k euros income. That's not to mention the shipping magnates who operate tax-free!

 

Greece should never have been allowed to join the EU. Let them go - but make them pay their debts!

 

Yes I tend to agree, a lot of this they have brought upon themselves through decades of evading taxes and corruption at all levels. When I was on holiday a few years back on Crete, I got talking to a local bar owner and he admitted that they had it so so good for so long and now they are paying the price, so even some Greek people realise how good they had it but eventually it caught up with the country and they had to be bailed out, so lets not feel too sorry for them. You run up massive debts here and you have to eventually pay it back or face the possibility of bankruptcy. I think the country needs to be careful now following this election, its okay saying goodbye to the Euro and go back to the Drachma but if they fail to meet the repayments then their economy will suffer even greater hardship because they will lose the support of the other member countries.  

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Four things have brought this great Country to its knees. First, the bloody Olympic Games that left this nation lamenting their decision to ever consider the idea that the Games should return to Athens. Second, their dysfunctional economy that saw heavy reliance upon public services, much like ours only a few years ago, that allowed people to work six hours a day and retire at forty five years of age, thirdly the bloody European Union and finally their past Governments demanding that Germany honour their pledges to repay their reparation debts following Word War Two.

Yes! Odd ain't it. Germany holds sway over Greece insisting that they repay this impossibly high burden of debt and yet, they Germany were allowed to walk away from repaying their billions of numerous currency debts amassed from 1921 to 1945, while the victors of World War Two struggled for decades to repay in full the Americans who funded our fight against the Nazis.

Yes! Greece was the last Country in Europe to end their demand that Germany should repay is debts. Perhaps it's this that makes the German Chancellor so determined that Greece should be crushed.

I say again, 'I'm thrilled. I hope Greece gets what it wants and I hope that the chain of events that are about to unfold bring about the destruction of this European Union.'

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Ah another cracking subject well I for one will be very weary of this gift from Greece because it could have implications for all of us and sadly Bobby we have to disagree on this. The reason why Greece got into this mess was because most Greeks paid little or no taxes, corruption was rife and life was a permanent siesta. Totally reliant of public services for employment so basically if they walk away from paying their debts they will have no money,no industry and so much uncertainty which in turn will bring disruption and a lot of anarchy ...which in turn will blow its tourism right out the Olympic rings.

 

It's almost certain that should they walk away from their debt others will follow so stand by for even more people coming to the UK for work,stability and a place to live.

 

What I love about the Greeks is that they are so upfront about the fact that the system was abused for so long.

 

Sorry Bobby mate but this is not a good thing.

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hello pal. Is it a bad thing? Not if you think like me. If, from hereon, if it stops the EU hoovering up unstable places like the Ukraine, Albania and Belarus and poking Mother Russia with a stick, then I'm all for the chaos that will ensue.

I couldn't care less about the impact it has on the Banking community and the ones who've brought us all to our knees taking advantage of the stupidity of the ruling elite and the ignorance of the working classes who always are required to fund these insane arrangements.

Let it burn for all I care. The European Union is the greatest man made mistake since Hitler demanded more living space for the Germanic people and I'll applaud anything that topples this madness over the edge and into oblivion.

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hello pal. Is it a bad thing? Not if you think like me. If, from hereon, if it stops the EU hoovering up unstable places like the Ukraine, Albania and Belarus and poking Mother Russia with a stick, then I'm all for the chaos that will ensue.

I couldn't care less about the impact it has on the Banking community and the ones who've brought us all to our knees taking advantage of the stupidity of the ruling elite and the ignorance of the working classes who always are required to fund these insane arrangements.

Let it burn for all I care. The European Union is the greatest man made mistake since Hitler demanded more living space for the Germanic people and I'll applaud anything that topples this madness over the edge and into oblivion.

 

That 70's vote somehow morphed from a vote for a 'Common Market' for trading to 'free Movement' ... The free movement bit being without a referendum ... Lots of people unhappy about that ...

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Well gents we will see...back in the late 90's I worked in Jakarta,Indonesia trying to help bump start a failing economy after the yanks had pulled their investments. Two days into my life changing trip I summoned up the courage to ask why people were queuing up next to tankers in the centre of the city. Well it was business and office types carrying away water in small plastic bags the sort you would normally see a goldfish in at the circus. You see there were no plastic bottles to be seen anywhere because the factories did not have the materials to make them.

 

I've paid my taxes and claimed no state benefits since I left school back in 1976. I've never walked away from a debt and served my country but don't think for a minute that I expect to get something in return because I don't. I know that there's a good chance that there will be no state pension when I actually need it and probably no free healthcare either.I feel people and countries should pay their dues after all how can you live off a state if the state has no money?

 

As for Russia well that's more about the ego of one man and one man only. Communism died long ago with only the North Koreans holding on and even that's down to government dictatorships which I know you top posters love so much.

 

Fortunately I am assured that there are members of this forum who have travelled, seen true austerity, witnessed extreme brutality and experienced civil unrest where there is no guarantee that you will live no further than tomorrow. Ah we see it on the TV and at the moment it's in Ukraine but could it be a little closer in twelve months time...what about 5 years. Are you guys really saying bring it on??

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Ah another cracking subject well I for one will be very weary of this gift from Greece because it could have implications for all of us and sadly Bobby we have to disagree on this. The reason why Greece got into this mess was because most Greeks paid little or no taxes, corruption was rife and life was a permanent siesta. Totally reliant of public services for employment so basically if they walk away from paying their debts they will have no money,no industry and so much uncertainty which in turn will bring disruption and a lot of anarchy ...which in turn will blow its tourism right out the Olympic rings.

 

It's almost certain that should they walk away from their debt others will follow so stand by for even more people coming to the UK for work,stability and a place to live.

 

What I love about the Greeks is that they are so upfront about the fact that the system was abused for so long.

 

Sorry Bobby mate but this is not a good thing.

 

I totally agree greenknight, bad management over decades of corruption and people not paying taxes, now they see an option to avoid paying their creditors, guess what, yessss the Greek people have voted for the party who want to half the debt or not pay it at all, funny that. 

 

Greece's debts total around €356bn (£290bn) - or around 165pc of the country's gross domestic product, a broad measure for the total economy. Greece's high levels of debt mean investors are wary of lending it more money, and demand a higher premium for doing so. The yield on Greek 10-year government bonds - the cost of borrowing to Greece - is one of the highest in the world at 29pc, compared with 1.7pc in the UK and 1.6pc in the US. Greece is struggling to repay its debts as it is in the throes of a deep recession. The economy is expected to contract by around 6.4pc this year, while unemployment is at record levels. To add to the economic turmoil, the Greek government is in tatters. Unable to form a coalition government due to fierce differences over how to lead the country out of the crisis, another general election was forced.

 

How did it end up in this mess?
Greece is in a large amount of debt following years of living beyond its means; public spending soared in the past decade and public sector wages doubled during the period. However, as the government upped its spending, tax income was hit because of widespread tax evasion. So when the global financial downturn hit, Greece was not equipped to cope.
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I read this article only last week

 

Amid expectations that Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou will resign soon, Greek politicians today worked to negotiate a power-sharing deal between rival parties that would secure a $179 billion (130 billion euros) rescue package for the country’s economy — and the promise of a savage new round of austerity.

But fears of widespread bank failures remain despite the likely deal, which has been championed by the Franco-German “Merkozy†alliance. Large firms in those countries stand to lose the most if Greece rejects the bailout and elects to default.
At the heart of the crisis, though, is the European Union, an economic and political institution forged over decades, sealed with a treaty in 1993, but only, truly made real in 2002, when most of the current member states dropped their currency in favor of the common euro. For centuries a breeding ground for war and imperialism, Western Europe had bound itself together in peace and apparent prosperity, with a supranational government all its own to be quartered in Brussels.
Its anthem: “Ode to Joy.â€
Things have changed. While most major banks remain multinational (with interests around the world) their errors — some would say crimes — have brought renewed focus on the sovereign state. Today, with Greece on the edge of default, the euro zone nations have a new catchphrase: “Exposure.†As in, how much “exposure†do our banks have to the bad debt held by yours.
It’s enough to make one’s head take an “Exorcistâ€-style lap around the neck. But here, below, is a simple guide to this latest and most important chapter in the crisis. The results in Greece will likely determine, and certainly predict, the fate of the European Union. This is the least you should know.
Why is Greece in debt?
Like any state (or person, for that matter), it spent more money than it took in. After the switch to the euro, the traditionally strong Greek public sector saw wages rise to ultimately unsustainable levels. To compound this, the retirement age in the country is low (by Western standards) and benefits are generous.
But that alone is not enough to sink an economy.
Mass tax evasion, on the other hand, can certainly do the trick. And it did in Greece. When people and businesses don’t pay their taxes, it limits revenue. So when the money inevitably ran out, Athens turned to European banks for loans. Soon, the government was borrowing billions and those debts, like subprime mortgages in the United States, were often repackaged as c0mplex commodites and sold off around the continent. Everyone, especially banks in France and Germany, wanted a piece. Now they have it.
 
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As much as I have great warmth and respect for Rebecca, Harry, Mick and my friend the Greenknight, I don't retract a single word. Not bloody one! The European Union can get stuffed! Not the strongest intellectual argument I know but howling, 'get stuffed' sums up perfectly the contempt I have for this mad arrangement shaped, moulded and served up by these idiots of West Europe.

Greece, together with many southern Medditeranean countries have always had there own way of doing things. Moreoften than not if you want your car fixed you go to the man who fixes the car and he does it for you. In return, you agree to paint his bloody garage. It was this way long before the bloody EU came a calling and it'll be this way long after. They call it 'community'. We call it economic madness.

The source of the madness was ever expecting Greece and others like them to ever be able to compete with the mighty German economy, hoovering them up into the EU and gifting them billions to create bloody cycle tracks, block rotten paving and an instruction booklet explaining why you couldn't sell your fruit if it fell off the branch after growing into an unacceptable shape unfit for our supermarket shelves.

Not only do I say, 'let it burn', I bloody hope it sets fire to a whole bunch of other good nations who might ask, 'why did we ever join. We were much happier and prosperous before we decided to join this club of fools'.

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I think the EU has to shoulder a lot of the blame,for how Greece has found itself in this mess today.

First off they should never have join the single currency,they cook the books to join & the other members knew but turned a blind eye. Also Greece was one of the countries who used to get a lot of money through the EU until the EU decided to expand eastwards. That's when there problems started as they,had there money which they used to receive from the EU seriously reduced along with the likes of Italy,Spain,Portugal & Ireland the trend was all these countries have had economic problems since!!

It's like individual people if you have a job & you can afford nice holidays etc but then one day you lose your job it can be difficult to alter the way in which you spend your money,as you may countinue spending as much in the same way as before you lost your job? it won't alter overnight it takes time to adjust how you cope with the situation!!

Also it should not surprise anyone if Greece decide not to pay the money back as they do have a history of doing so!

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And whoever pressed the rotten button and gifted me a minus rotten one, they can get stuffed as we'll. in fact, thinking about it, I hope the digit you used to deliver me that little slice of pleasure, suddenly turns black, wobbles slightly and then drops bloody off.

Do your worst I say! And while I'm at it if, when I journey down to the tip tomorrow to dump this mattress that someone was kind enough to deposit upon my fully paid for skip, and whilst I'm dragging the blasted thing out of my car, a fully paid up member of Syriza suddenly pops up from behind the skip labelled 'for mattresses only' and he says he follows Hereford Voice and asks, 'should we repay our debt to the European Union?' I'll tell him, 'either move out of me bloody way or grab a hold and help me get this bloody thing into the skip'. And I'll tell him, 'don't pay a penny. Give them nothing. Take control of your own destiny and when the next European War begins, as it surely will, stay bloody neutral and don't get involved in the madness of the European Union'.

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Will admit that Greece is not a country that I have been to or really shown any interest in - well this Topic started off by Bobby has really opened my eyes , it's an old saying that says " there are two sides to every story " well it's apparent from reading these posts that there certainly are .

I have read , with interest , all these well written posts and I must declare that I am still sitting in the fence as to which side I should come out in favour of.

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As much as I have great warmth and respect for Rebecca, Harry, Mick and my friend the Greenknight, I don't retract a single word. Not bloody one! The European Union can get stuffed! Not the strongest intellectual argument I know but howling, 'get stuffed' sums up perfectly the contempt I have for this mad arrangement shaped, moulded and served up by these idiots of West Europe.

Greece, together with many southern Medditeranean countries have always had there own way of doing things. Moreoften than not if you want your car fixed you go to the man who fixes the car and he does it for you. In return, you agree to paint his bloody garage. It was this way long before the bloody EU came a calling and it'll be this way long after. They call it 'community'. We call it economic madness.

The source of the madness was ever expecting Greece and others like them to ever be able to compete with the mighty German economy, hoovering them up into the EU and gifting them billions to create bloody cycle tracks, block rotten paving and an instruction booklet explaining why you couldn't sell your fruit if it fell off the branch after growing into an unacceptable shape unfit for our supermarket shelves.

Not only do I say, 'let it burn', I bloody hope it sets fire to a whole bunch of other good nations who might ask, 'why did we ever join. We were much happier and prosperous before we decided to join this club of fools'.

Sorry for late response ...I have been offline so to speak.

 

Heh no retraction required your position is clear old chap but to use your analogy"There I was me car needed fixin so I went to see me old mate Stavros who said he could fix my car which had damaged t h e steering because I could not avoid the crater in the road no cash to fix the bloody roads 'cause what monies were there have been stolen, squirreled away by some dodgy contractor. Stavros says no worries Knighty you can fix me garage...but I can't you see , my arm was broken in the crash and gonna be weeks before I can get it fixed"

 

Does this sound familiar ??

 

As for prosperity well this country was financially broken after WW2 so guess what we borrowed to rebuild and create the NHS and welfare system we have today. Sadly though our generations have taken this for granted. Anyone born after 1950 and particularly those in the 1950-1960 window have fared very well sitting on the crest of a wave of positive lifestyle changes with developing first class health service, social care, free prescriptions, state pensions,final salary schemes not to mention the early availability of new council housing providing homes for thousands.We have not even touched on strong union representation. Yes sure there was the cold war and strikes but generally we can't complain. I have often thought that the people who complain the least are those who suffered the most....these days they tend to be over 75 !

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I looked at the figures this afternoon and Greece is €323 billion in debt. This includes the €240 billion bailout by the eurozone countries/ECB/IMF. The exposure of the UK to that debt is €1.6 billion ~ ie our contribution to the IMF. If Greece paid none back (which is impossible) then we would be exposed to 0.6% of the bailout. Which is getting off lightly in my book. 

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The banking system we have today is the same as the federal reserve in America the money is in private hands .There are shareholders in the bank of England and we are not allowed to know who they are ,as laws past through parliment prevent us knowing.President Lincoln introduced the greenbacks he was assassinated JFK also started to introduce interest free money and he also got taken out. As Megilliand stated the Irish gave the wrong vote that is because the Republic of Ireland is sitting on top of oil reserves bigger than the north sea. I hope i do not have to write a ten page post to spell it out but he who holds the gold makes the rules.

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