What would you do if you were a Greek citizen

By Dark Politricks

The news that the Greek PM George Papandreou has seriously “pissed off” the German and French leadersNicolas Sarkozy and Angela Merkel, by jeopardising their bailout plan through his decision to allow the Greek people to decide what to do in a referendum is not much of a surprise.

Apparently the leaders of France and Germany are fuming that he has gone back home after agreeing to the huge bailout that would have put Greece into even more debt whilst “saving the euro” by daring to ask the people who will be most affected by this decision what they think.

How dare the Greek people have a choice to decide whether to jump into decades of austerity, low growth, huge debt repayments, job losses, service cuts and much more.

Greece, the ancient home of democracy, now giving it’s people a chance to decide whether to be a free nation or to succumb to their new European masters in Berlin and Paris. How dare they do such a thing!

In a true democracy the people should have a chance to make their voices felt about the most important decisions their political leaders make. Here in the UK we have only once had a referendum on Europe and that was whether or not to join the EEC back in 1975.

That was nothing to do with the EU, the Euro or the dream of a European Super State some globalists wish to see. The politicians dread letting the people make a decision in case they make the “wrong one”.

As the Tea Party and Occupy Wall Street protests in the USA, Occupy London protests and student riots in the UK, and the massive demonstrations all round Europemake abundantly clear – the people understand a lot more than the politicians give them credit for and they are certainly not happy with the status quo.

Piling more debt upon an already larger debt is never the answer and the only things Sarkozy and Merkel care about is saving their precious dream of United States of Europe.They are so furious with the Greek PM’s decision to delay plans to “calm the markets” and stabilise the Euro that they have demanded he attend the head masters office to be told off in person on Wednesday when he attends the G20 meeting.

I would love to be a fly on the wall in that meeting as I am sure the Greek PM is going to get such a massive telling off by his new overlords he will blush for days. How dare he ask the Greek people for their opinion on such a huge decision.

Do they still believe the EU is actually a grouping of sovereign states that can make their own decisions?

Or do now see the European Super State as a reality which makes their demands legally binding with no scope for dissent by member countries parliaments or the people they supposedly represent.

On news of the unanimous decision by the Greek cabinet to back Mr Papandreou’s plan for a referendum the markets crumbled – as they usually do on a weekly basis on news of the next “Euro rescue plan”.

In Germany the Dax index, the major stock market average, lost 5%, while the French stock market closed down 5.4%, the Italian 6.7% and London 2.2%.

No doubt a lot of people in brokerage houses all around the world got even richer from this news as volatility in the market enables traders to make money on the dips and rises. Who wants stability when their is scope for money to be made by the banksters!

In fact as always, the banksters of the world will do okay whatever happens and the people of Europe will suffer whatever happens. But whatever your opinion on the Euro, the EU or the current debt crisis surely the Greek people, those most affected by any decision should have the final word on the matter?

Economists, politicians and commentators all over the world believe the Greeks should reject the EU bailout plan and go down the route of Iceland which if we remember was one of the first countries to suffer due to over leveraged banks after the financial crisis first started.

Iceland, a country not in the Euro but with all the benefits of free trade and movement of people, something many Brits wish we had instead of full EU membership, experienced a massive collapse in their banking system during 2008.

Relative to the size of its economy, Iceland’s banking collapse is the largest suffered by any country in economic history.

Their main 3 commercial banks were over leveraged to an amount that equated to 11 times the size of the whole GDP of Iceland (about £130 billion). The collapse caused a run on their banks by UK depositors who had been attracted to invest by the high interest rates offered and the crisis threatened to tank the whole Icelandic economy.

Their currency fell sharply in value, foreign currency transactions were virtually suspended for weeks, and the market capitalisation of the Icelandic stock exchange dropped by more than 90%. The countries GDP dropped by over 5% and the country went into recession. As a result of this crisis the UK and Dutch governments decided to bailout their own citizens who had invested in the banks many of which were local councils trying to get the best return on their savings, something the Labour Government at the time had suggested they do.

However despite threats from the UK and DutchAnti-Terrorism laws being used to freeze Icelandic assets in the UK and lots of pressure from the world community the Icelandic people basically chose to stick two fingers up at the world and reject their own governments choice of bailouts, debt and austerity.

Instead of pouring good money after bad by injecting capital into their banking system to prop it up like the USA, UK, Ireland and others did they decided to let capitalism run it’s natural course by letting the banks fail, choosing short term recession over long term depression and lengthy austerity measures. They chose to ignore pleas to protect the creditors of those banks and instead placed the banks into receivership whilst at the same time protecting Icelandic savers money.

After their President had vetoed a number of controversial bills that would have meant paying back the creditors of the failed banks the decisions were put to referendums, a choice now facing the Greeks, and the people of Iceland chose to vote No and No. Shortly afterwards the current government was thrown out of office.

Obviously this disgraceful act of people power and referenda were anathema to the UK and Dutch governments which had basically been turning the screws on Icelandwanting them to re-pay for their own bailing out of Icelandic investors, something they shouldn’t have done in the first place.

In the year or so that followed Iceland went through a painful period but now they out the other side and doing well which cannot be said for the countries that chose to bail out the banks rather than protecting the people from the banks.

As Washingtons Bog article explains, even the IMF now praises the Icelandic strategy:

“As the first country to experience the full force of the global economic crisis, Iceland is now held up as an example by some of how to overcome deep economic dislocation without undoing the social fabric.”

So maybe there is a chance for Greece to escape the years of gloom that awaits them if they decide to pile more debt on top of their already weak economy.

However unlike Iceland, Greece is already in the Euro, with all the straight jacket mechanisms that entails. Without being able to leave, return to the Drachma, devalue and take back control of their own interest rates they will basically have to hand over full control of their economy to the ECB and the main Euro players i.e Germany and France.

Many people believe Greece should have never been allowed to join the Euro in the first place and it was only the massive cooking of the books by Goldman Sachs and JP Morgan that enabled it to meet Europe’s strict deficit rules while continuing to allow it to spend beyond its means.

That choice to choose the Euro over the future of their people has come back hard to bite them in the ass as many people are now seeing an end to the dream of a United States of Europe in the near future.

A decision by the Greek people to stand up for themselves and say no to more debt and austerity like the Icelandic people did, might just help move that dreamy future forward a bit for everyone else who sees the Euro and EU as a globalist plan that has been forced upon the people of Europe without their say and is bound to ultimately fail anyway.

As with all referenda it all depends on the way the question is formed. Obviously the Greek PM Mr Papandreou wants to shift any blame from himself to the people if it all goes tits up which undoubtedly it will.

However despite all their current strife, the daily riots and lack of jobs, apparently the Greek people are still in favour of the Euro so maybe a straight “Are you in favour of remaining in the Euro or not?” question might lead to a YES – face saving vote for the Greek PM, and then the focus can move down the Mediterranean to Italy or Spain.

However if the question was posed in more realistic terms such as the one below I wonder what the Greek people would vote for.

What would you do if you were a Greek citizen being asked the following two questions.

Question 1 – Straight In or Out of the Euro question

[polldaddy poll=5634160]

Question 2 – Austerity and Debt or Drachma and devaluation.

[polldaddy poll=5634176]

Please provide comments for the “other” selection if you have any in the comments for this post.



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2 Responses to “What would you do if you were a Greek citizen”

  1. Edward Murphy Says:

    The situation that Greece finds itself is similar to an end of war scenario.
    You start again and build a decent, open and fully accountable system of Government for the good of all, rebuilding a shattered economy, and money should be made available, without strings, to make this happen
    Germany, for one, has a very short memory when it comes to rebuilding its own economy after a war, a situation which could never have been resolved without outside help.

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    […]What would you do if you were a Greek citizen « Dark Politics[…]…

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