Some Responses to the Greek Crisis

Some responses to the Greek crisis:

Boris Johnson:

After five years of crisis, the European Union has reached such depths of intellectual and spiritual exhaustion that ministers are willing to contemplate two appalling options: the immolation of Greek democracy or a Grexit that would almost certainly prove contagious to other eurozone members – including, ultimately, the French themselves.

What will the Greeks do? My heart says they should tell Schäuble to get stuffed. Five years ago, I said they should go for freedom, and I think the same today. What have they gained, by staving off the inevitable? More unemployment, more misery, more poverty. What have they got to lose? Nothing but their chains – the servitude that goes with a cruel monetary version of the Ottoman empire.

Now is the time to rediscover the spirit of Marathon, to fight for the things that made Greece great, to burst the shackles of the Great King of Brussels. Now is the time for what they used to call arete – the full expression of their independent moral virtue.

Nigel Farage:

The Greek parliament must pass legislation by Wednesday for the bailout to go ahead but with a significant number of the Syriza government’s MPs opposed to the measures, Alexis Tsipras, the Prime Minister, faces a tough challenge to pass the package.

And if they decide not to, Mr Farage has called for Greeks to take to the streets, saying he would join them if only he was an Athenian himself.

Max Hastings:

This Greek fiasco seems likely to signal the beginning, and not the end, of a crisis that will end with the break-up of the eurozone in its present form. The process may take years, but eventually German voters will refuse to continue cashing other people’s dud cheques.

Nigel Lawson:

The fact that the eurozone has proved an economic disaster is hardly surprising, since it was always a political, not an economic, project.

Its sole raison d’etre was to be a stepping stone towards a full-scale political union, a United States of Europe.

It is now more than a quarter of a century since, as Chancellor – in a speech to which Margaret Thatcher referred in her memorable final parliamentary performance as Prime Minister – I warned the only way that a monetary union could work is if it is accompanied by a full fiscal and economic union. In turn, this requires full political union – a single European state.

No matter that the great majority of the people of Europe do not share this ambition: a fundamental contempt for democracy has always been one of the most striking (and least attractive) characteristics of the European integrationists, however high-minded their intentions.

Paul Krugman:

The European project — a project I have always praised and supported — has just been dealt a terrible, perhaps fatal blow.


The Italians and Spanish and French have noted every word of this, and more. Europe as it is, is already over. Everything from here on in is a mere death rattle.


About Frank Davis

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31 Responses to Some Responses to the Greek Crisis

  1. harleyrider1978 says:

    Even California decided against raising the minimum wage for fear of business closures and more unemployed today………..seems even the libs are starting to figure out the gig is almost up for their economic and socialist agenda.

  2. gainny says:

    The dispossession of the Greek people will continue, whether by Brussels or Athens.

  3. waltc says:

    Amen to every quote Frank quoted. Why– I keep wondering– are people, in fact whole nations, such dweebs? Why the allegiance to the devil-you-know? Is Athens suffering a Stockholm syndrome?

  4. Jim says:

    “Why– I keep wondering– are people, in fact whole nations, such dweebs? Why the allegiance to the devil-you-know? Is Athens suffering a Stockholm syndrome?”

    Its very easy to say that sat here in the UK, with our functioning banks, growing economy, guaranteed pension payments and salaries. What you have to realise is that if the Greeks leave the euro, it will be horrendous for them. The banks are bust, and would collapse entirely without ECB support, so the financial system would be gone. The Greek state has no money to pay its employees. The Greeks import just about everything that a modern society needs, and a new drachma would not be acceptable as payment for imports, hard currency is needed for that, which Greece does not have. Basically we would be witnessing the first collapse of a western state (if you can call Greece a western state to start with).

    So while freeing themselves from the euro yoke and introducing their own currency would be the best solution in the long term, in the short to medium term it would be even worse than what they have today, and will have tomorrow if the new deal goes through. I can perfectly see why they don’t want to face that scenario, and prefer the devil they know. I don’t know what I would want to do were I in their situation. They have no easy options, every one is a sh*t sandwich. Its just a case of low level sh*t sandwiches for decades, or a massive one and then its done.

    • Rose says:

      It has occured to me that if Greece does bite the bullet and leave, it would be a worthy use of our massive foreign aid budget to help get them back on their feet, no strings attached.

      A drop in the ocean, I know, but every little helps.

      • Jim says:

        That was my solution to the problem. Force the Greeks out of the euro, but at the same time offer them massive cushioning payments, probably as much as they are being ‘loaned’ now. Most would come from from Germany, so that would make them look better too. Its sort of a win-win really – the Greeks NEED to be out of the euro, the Germans are going to end up paying one way or another, but this way their losses are limited, and the Greeks don’t get off scot free as it would still be painful even with massive aid packages. And the seeds of their economic recovery would be sown.

        But of course the EU and euro ‘project’ is more important than people’s lives, so everyone has to suffer for the good of the EU elite’s dictates.

    • Frank Davis says:

      a new drachma would not be acceptable as payment for imports, hard currency is needed for that

      So what happened when the Western world started trading with Far East countries like China back in the 18th century? The Chinese didn’t have any pounds or dollars or francs. But they did have stuff the West wanted to buy, and the West had things they wanted to buy. And that is really the only essential prerequisite for trade. And as long as Greece has something to sell – like tourism and shipping -, ways will be found to trade, regardless of whether the medium of exchange is dollars, euros, drachmas, sea shells, or cigarettes.

      If Greece returns to the drachma, everyone who is currently trading with Greece will need to hold drachmas, An exchange rate between the drachma and other currencies will emerge. It probably won’t be very favourable for the Greeks at first, because most people will naturally prefer to use so-called ‘hard’ currencies.

      …unless the EU retaliates against a Greek departure from the euro by imposing sanctions in some form.

      • harleyrider1978 says:

        All the conditions are perfect for a civilwar in Greece……………..

      • Rose says:

        So what happened when the Western world started trading with Far East countries like China back in the 18th century?

        We used silver.

        “At the time, increased global demand for tea was one of the primary reasons for a shortage of silver; this was the only currency that the Chinese, sole producers of the commodity at the time, would accept in payment.”

      • Jim says:

        No importer of goods into Greece will want to be paid in freshly printed drachma. What can they buy with it? No-one outside of Greece will exchange it for hard currency or goods. A pharmaceutical company selling drugs doesn’t want a ship, or 20,000 litres of olive oil, or a lifetimes supply of holidays in the sun. It wants hard cash. Dollars, Euros, sterling, gold even. Not a newly instituted paper currency thats will be being printed like mad by the Greek state to pay its vast army of employees and welfare claimants. Of course eventually an equilibrium value will be found with other currencies, and some degree of convertibility with other currencies established, but that may take many months. In the meantime Greece needs oil, food, drugs, machinery, spare parts, everything that makes an economy function, none of which is made in Greece. Which is why they will need hard currency to tide them over, enough for 6 months of imports at the very least.

  5. c777 says:

    Wait till the troika raids their bank accounts on Thursday morning.
    “If” the Greek parliament approve the troika’s measures on Wednesday that is.
    This ain’t over yet.

    • harleyrider1978 says:

      Their screwed anyway they go. Freedom has a price and if the greek government was smart theyd stash some well hidden hard asset away somewhere to tide or cushion the conversion to the drachma besides the above mentioned foreign aid so they could hold out long enuf to survive the first months of independence as Nigel has said.

  6. harleyrider1978 says:

    Betcha Greece goes ahead with the below plan very quickly and a million other ways to get business to open up across Greece.

    Greece to issue smoking licences to pubs

    The smoking ban in Greece could be amended just four months after it was brought in with the introduction of a smoking tax.

    • harleyrider1978 says:

      The above is from 2011 and could have been instituted already but considering whats going on now who cares what Greece does as within 3 months Greece will default yet again and then like Nigel said neither the IMF WORLD BANK or much anyone else has the money to bail out anyone else. They’ve reached the limit of printing money around the world and that means game over for the whole world order movement………..they took us all to the very end with them.

      • nisakiman says:

        There was indeed talk of ‘smoking licences’, but the conditions were fairly onerous and the cost high. So the ever enterprising Greeks just issued ‘smoking licences’ to themselves, with no conditions and no costs (apart from the odd fine for the unlucky ones). And so it continues to be so.

        With regards the latest developments, I really can’t see the Greeks selling their birthright for a mess of pottage.

        Schaeuble (who in my opinion is an embittered and thoroughly nasty piece of work) has quite deliberately imposed a humiliating and counter-productive deal on the Greek nation with a view to very publicly punishing the Greeks for having had the temerity to stand up to the might of the EU technocrats. He has determined that they will suffer and that they will lose everything. The proposed ‘bailout funds’ to be issued to Greece will go directly to pay the interest on the unsustainable loans that hang like a millstone around the neck of every Greek. None of it will be used to actually assist the country to recover. The family jewels will be confiscated and all power devolved to the Troika.

        The Greek parliament may pass the bailout deal, but if they do, there will be blood on the streets. The Greeks are quite passionately nationalistic, and any attempt to steal their country from them by German bankers will be met with resistance.

        • harleyrider1978 says:

          The final nail driven in the banksters coffin will be LET THE LENDER BEWARE………..
          But Ive the feeling the lenders were just as much forced to make the loans as Greece was forced to accept the bailouts by Brussels. We don’t know the threat that was used but we know threats have been made to force capitulation by any and all who dare oppose EU authority. Including the threat of military intervention Im sure.

        • smokingscot says:

          @ Nisakiman

          One thought went through my tiny mind this morning that it ain’t so much about Greece, but also an example that serves as a salutary – and needlessly viscous – warning to the political upstarts in Italy as well as Spain.

          Podemos and Five Star supporters (as well as UKIP to an extent). Be careful what you wish for ’cause it ain’t going to happen.

          On the plus side, the Iran deal has cheered me up no end, but that’s another story altogether.

  7. harleyrider1978 says:

    We will all be like Greece if the EU gets its way

    The humiliating terms imposed on Greece show just how far the EU will go to snuff out any hint of sovereignty in its member states

  8. harleyrider1978 says:

    Macau softens stance on full smoking ban in casinos

    EJ Insight

    Macau appears to have eased its stance on a proposal to implement full smoking ban on casino floors, the Hong Kong Economic Journal reported …

    • harleyrider1978 says:

      Macau softens stance on full smoking ban in casinos

      Macau appears to have eased its stance on a proposal to implement full smoking ban on casino floors, the Hong Kong Economic Journal reported Tuesday.

      Smoking may be allowed in VIP rooms if the casino operators can assure that they have made adequate arrangements to safeguard people’s health, the report said, citing Tam Chon-weng, Macau’s Secretary for Social Affairs and Culture.

      On July 10, Macau’s legislature passed a revised bill on smoking control. However, casino operators have sought some leeway in implementing the smoking ban on gaming floors.

      Tam said the government is firm and clear that it intends to curb smoking, and that a thorough study on the impact of a full smoking ban has been completed.

      That said, the administration has taken note of the views of market players and may leave some room for casinos to have smoking rooms.

      Industry players had expressed concern that a full smoking ban may deter some gamers and affect casino revenues, already under pressure due to China’s anti-graft and austerity campaign.

      But now the apparent softening of the government’s stance has provided some cheer for the industry. Share prices of gaming firms outperformed the broader Hong Kong market on Monday.

      Kwok Chi-chung, president of a Macau junket trade group, had called for a win-win proposal that can control smoking without affecting the casinos’ business too much.

      • Smoking Lamp says:

        Let’s hope they stay the course on softening the ban. I suspect the economic realities were beginning to become clear. Hopefully the same economic realities are recognized elsewhere–like NOLA.

        It is essential that the tobacco control lies get exposed–especially the second hand smoke fraud. Also the lies about no economic loss after bans need to be exposed.

        Hopefully this step in Macau is the first stage of tobacco control’s totalitarian reign crumbling. It won’t fall without out a fight and exposing their lies will hasten their demise.

        • jaxthefirst says:

          Some years ago, a friend told me that a smoking ban was imposed in Las Vegas casinos (well before being caught up in the current rash of bans), for politically-correct reasons and (of course) because of promises of a huge influx of non-smokers, keen to gamble away their cash in the new, smoke-free gambling dens, but that it was repealed completely within a few short weeks, because the takings from slot machines (where I understand the majority of Vegas’s money is made) literally dropped through the floor. I also heard that an early state-wide ban in Florida was also repealed (I heard that one at the Forest Freedom Dinner just before the UK ban was imposed, so it was a while ago). Anyone else (Harley, maybe?) ever heard of either of these “failed” bans?

  9. harleyrider1978 says:

    French tobacco sales rise for first time in years – The Local

    France is losing its war on tobacco if the sales of cigarettes are anything to go as the country reports an increase for the first time since 2009.

    • DICK R says:

      Why should any body in his right mind believe he can win a ‘war against tobacco’ especially as most of it is now smuggled from Eastern europe and sold at a fraction of the price of the official product ?

  10. harleyrider1978 says:

    In the end NOBODY WILL GET PAID as a worldwide reset is about to happen.

    • harleyrider1978 says:

      I can see the EU coming into Greece like carpet baggers raising taxes on every property they want to confiscate from the owners after they cant pay the taxes levied by the government because the government rent subsidies have been cut but wont allow you to throw out the unpaying renters. Then the EUcrats simply buy your land/property for pennies on the euro and take over. Putting refugee greek poor into tent cities across the country and bread and soup wagon showing up to feed the newly disowned citizens to the elements at hand……….worse then ww2 maybe. At least those greeks could fight back.

  11. jltrader says:

    Seems like everyone here except Jim bought the story where the Greeks are the ‘good guys’ being bullied by the ‘bad guys’ the Germans. I think the picture is not black and white, but it has many shades of gray. When Romania was having problems in 2010 after the GFC (Great Financial Crisis) which the politicians said will bypass Romania (just to show how smart they were), among other measures, the VAT was raised from 19% to 24% and salaries for all state employees cut by 25%. And let me tell you they were and still are less than half of Greek average salaries. We were just in luck that the then president couldn’t run again so he had nothing to lose by taking deeply unpopular measures. Greece has structural problems (basically spends much more than it earns), and until they solve that, with or without Euro they’ll go from crisis to crisis.

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