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wonderpup

What Is The Imf Doing In Greece?

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I never really gave much thought to this question before- but why on earth did the EU call in the IMF to help it deal with the Greeks?

Are we to believe that the EU lacked the financial resources to handle the situation in Greece- a tiny speck of an economy in the grand scheme of things?

This seems incredible to me- so lack of funding can't be the answer- but then what is?

The only reason I can think of is to allow the EU to avoid getting it's hands dirty in Greece- to create some distance between the kill and the weapon, in the same way one might want to hire an assassin rather than doing the job yourself.

Ok- fairly dramatic language I know- but why else would the EU invite the IMF to the party if not as some kind of moral smoke screen behind which it can hide?

The more I see the EU operate the more it starts to resemble some sleazy gangland mob rather than the force for good I always imagined it to be.

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indeed, same reason the US gets the UN involved when it wants to jackboot part of the middle east

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The smoking gun;

EU put eurozone safety before Greece during bailout, IMF report claimsThe bailout of Greece was bungled because it was an attempt to save the single currency rather than the debt-stricken country, according to a highly critical IMF report.

The internal report on the handling of the Greek crisis has detailed a catalogue of errors, which led to the IMF breaking three out of four of its own rules relating to lending money to bankrupt countries.

It also admits that the impact of austerity policies in Greece was badly underestimated as EU institutions and leaders tried to save their political skins at the expense of the Greek economy.

The report, first leaked to the Wall Street Journal, explained that in 2010 the IMF lent €36bn (£30.5bn) to Greece despite a risk “so significant that staff were unable to vouch that public debt was sustainable”.

Most damaging of all is the IMF admission that the Greek bailout was not drawn up to help Greece but was a “holding operation” that “gave the euro area time to build a firewall to protect other vulnerable members and averted potentially severe effects on the global economy”.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/financialcrisis/10101660/EU-put-eurozone-safety-before-Greece-during-bailout-IMF-report-claims.html

So The Greek people were sacrificed for the 'greater good' by having a mountain of unsustainable debt piled onto their shoulders- and the EU continue to this day to peddle the line that they were 'helping' the Greeks? How does it help a nation drowning in debt to force it to take on even more debt?

Next time that hypocrite Schaeuble talks about people taking responsibility for their actions he should be first in line to do just that and have the decency to admit that the EU have behaved disgracefully in this entire debacle.

Edited by wonderpup

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So The Greek people were sacrificed for the 'greater good' by having a mountain of unsustainable debt piled onto their shoulders- and the EU continue to this day to peddle the line that they were 'helping' the Greeks? How does it help a nation drowning in debt to force it to take on even more debt?

If they had not "bailed out" Greece back then, what would have happened? Could you describe how you believe everything would have played out?

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Well, I believe it is not dissimilar to Ireland. The ECB threatened to withdraw liquidity if they didn't take a bailout to pay back French and German banks and their senior unsecured bondholders.

Very little money got through from these so-called bailouts.

Oh and IMF are the stormtroopers, the experts in crashing and stripping the economy for waiting vultures from America investment banks amongst other insiders.

Indeed, Aldo Ferrer (a former Arg economy minister) yesterday: "There are economists who are planning to head back to the (International Monetary) Fund,” ... he told a Buenos Aires radio station, adding the organization’s recommendations were “useless.”

“What the IMF says has to be taken as information and have the prudence to not owe nothing to it,” Ferrer affirmed considering the organization commanded by Christine Lagarde “incorrigible.”

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Seen to be impartial...the Greek's certainly aren't going to pay any attention to what the German's say. Probably turning a deaf ear to the IMF too, be it a slightly less deaf one.

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Because the US didnt want germany f&cking it all up.

gernany have f&cked it up anyway.

Theres a long thread on it.

A 25% collapse in output would usually result in a hyperinflation and be over quite quickly. In rgeeces case the 25% fall in output has been forced upon it by germany but it is still locked into the same currency as it started with. hence the forced deflation, completely unnecessary social suffering and hopelessness.

Thats how germany treats its friends and equal partners to protect its banks and economy. Remember that.

Edited by R K

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Because the US didnt want germany f&cking it all up.

gernany have f&cked it up anyway.

Theres a long thread on it.

A 25% collapse in output would usually result in a hyperinflation and be over quite quickly. In rgeeces case the 25% fall in output has been forced upon it by germany but it is still locked into the same currency as it started with. hence the forced deflation, completely unnecessary social suffering and hopelessness.

Thats how germany treats its friends and equal partners to protect its banks and economy. Remember that.

How does a collapse in output necessarily result in hyperinflation :blink:

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A 25% collapse in output would usually result in a hyperinflation and be over quite quickly. In rgeeces case the 25% fall in output has been forced upon it by germany but it is still locked into the same currency as it started with. hence the forced deflation, completely unnecessary social suffering and hopelessness.

Thats how germany treats its friends and equal partners to protect its banks and economy. Remember that.

Also remember this is just one view on it, not necessarily the correct view.

Another view is that the Greek economy always was a lie based on excessive and non stop borrowing, and the 25% fall in output is just revealing the emperor with no clothes. The start of the story was fudging to get into the Euro, losing control of their own destiny and ability to print their way out of the problems (if that would have worked anyway). All the rhetoric about Germany is a misdirection to avoid facing up to socialist failings.

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Also remember this is just one view on it, not necessarily the correct view.

Another view is that the Greek economy always was a lie based on excessive and non stop borrowing, and the 25% fall in output is just revealing the emperor with no clothes. The start of the story was fudging to get into the Euro, losing control of their own destiny and ability to print their way out of the problems (if that would have worked anyway). All the rhetoric about Germany is a misdirection to avoid facing up to socialist failings.

Indeed... very superfluous to look for the causes somewhere else or blame monetary policy for failings of this nature..

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Currency falls... a lot.

That option is not available as an adjusting mechanism.

OK, and does it fall a lot if its supply's left alone? All I was getting at is that hyperinflation is not exactly a natural phenomena, but an outcome of monetary cranks/charlatans meddling with/operating money supply - if that's assumed as a given (which I sadly admit is a reality), then I "get" it.

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Also remember this is just one view on it, not necessarily the correct view.

Another view is that the Greek economy always was a lie based on excessive and non stop borrowing, and the 25% fall in output is just revealing the emperor with no clothes. The start of the story was fudging to get into the Euro, losing control of their own destiny and ability to print their way out of the problems (if that would have worked anyway). All the rhetoric about Germany is a misdirection to avoid facing up to socialist failings.

Its not a "view". Its a fact.

I agree. They made up some data with the help of goldman Sachs. EU turned a blind eye. Everyone was happy.

But to suggest there isnt a systemic problem at the heart of the Euro system and that german banks didnt recycle german savings into greece is risible. Its the fundamental cause of the EZ crisis.

Forcing greece to shrink her economy by 25% had almost nothing to do with resolving the problems of the greek economy and everything to do with avoiding german bank asset write downs. Im not repeating the facts on this since theyre sooooo well known but if you refuse to accepty germany (& the EZ) can very simply resolve this without causing such punitive damage - and in the process doubling greeces debt/gdp - the exact opposite of what they claim theyre trying to do, then Im afraid you are simply refusing to accept reality (even the imf accept they ot this wrong), presumably due to some political belief or other that I cant help you with. Certainly theres no economic basis for it. If it was such a brilliant idea it would have been successful which clearly it hasnt been. Look at the IMF forecasts to see that (Ive linked them in the greek thread)

But please, since you have a counter-vailing view - post up what it is, with your supporting data else Ill assume youre just trolling. I notice from other posts you havent posted anything other than your opinion. No data, no economic rationale. Just trolling.

Ive no interest in wasting time reading political propaganda so Ive added you to my "block" list. Since you have no interest in discussing factual comment I suggest you block me also. Cheers.

Edited by R K

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Its not a "view". Its a fact.

I agree. They made up some data with the help of goldman Sachs. EU turned a blind eye. Everyone was happy.

But to suggest there isnt a systemic problem at the heart of the Euro system and that german banks didnt recycle german savings into greece is risible. Its the fundamental cause of the EZ crisis.

Forcing greece to shrink her economy by 25% had almost nothing to do with resolving the problems of the greek economy and everything to do with avoiding german bank asset write downs. Im not repeating the facts on this since theyre sooooo well known but if you refuse to accepty germany (& the EZ) can very simply resolve this without causing such punitive damage - and in the process doubling greeces debt/gdp - the exact opposite of what they claim theyre trying to do, then Im afraid you are simply refusing to accept reality (even the imf accept they ot this wrong), presumably due to some political belief or other that I cant help you with. Certainly theres no economic basis for it. If it was such a brilliant idea it would have been successful which clearly it hasnt been. Look at the IMF forecasts to see that (Ive linked them in the greek thread)

But please, since you have a counter-vailing view - post up what it is, with your supporting data else Ill assume youre just trolling. I notice from other posts you havent posted anything other than your opinion. No data, no economic rationale. Just trolling.

Ive no interest in wasting time reading political propaganda so Ive added you to my "block" list. Since you have no interest in discussing factual comment I suggest you block me also. Cheers.

Well, since I'm fairly new to this topic, I only ever see your views posted as fact too. I never see you post data, just references to articles that suit your view. I could say that your view is also politically motivated, and those articles suit it. I could post articles which disagree with your view, does that make mine "fact"?

I see you won't be reading this, because you've blocked me. But you'll note, and I hope others note, I haven't insulted you once. I haven't used the overly aggressive tone you've used. All I've done is state an alternate view. I find it weird that you are on a public forum, VEHEMENTLY expressing your views (quoting only those articles that agree with you) and when someone enters debate to state an alternate view, you can't handle that, throw a hissy fit and do the equivalent of blocking your ears and "na na na na".

Odd.

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If they had not "bailed out" Greece back then, what would have happened? Could you describe how you believe everything would have played out?

I cannot know of course, but the belief at the time was that a Greek default would have had catastrophic consequences for the EU banking sector and possibly the global economy.

Don't get me wrong here-I'm not arguing that this should have been allowed to happen- what I object to is the blatant propaganda that the money funneled into Greece was intended to help the Greeks alone- while in reality it was a bailout not of the Greeks but of the entire EU banking system and by extension the entire Euro area.

So now- when the Germans insist that the Greeks alone should pay the costs for this bailout in terms of 'austerity', including cutting pensions and health care, I call this rank hypocrisy.

Think of it this way- if Wonga responded to people who got into deep debt on their loans by lending them even more money so that they could service that debt we would call that the lowest form of loan sharking- but this is precisely what the people at the highest levels of the EU did to the Greeks- fearing the consequnces of a default they conspired with the corrupt Greek goverment of that time to foist even more debt onto the people of Greece-not in a sincere attempt to help the Greeks but to avoid the meltdown of the Euro system and the German and French Banks who had recklessly lent the Greek state the money (Correctly assuming that they would be bailed out if anything went wrong.)

It may well be that preventing a Greek default was-at that time- a vital thing to do- but to present this action a 'rescue' of the Greek people and as a result demand severe hardship from those people as a payment for this 'rescue' is pure unadulaterated bullsh*t.

What Greece needed was debt restructuing, not more loans- and everyone understood this to be the case at the time. But since this restructuring was impossible for the reasons described above the choice was made to offer more debt- again not in the interests of the Greeks specifically but in the wider interest of the Euro area and the global economy.

The Greek 'bailout' was in reality a bailout of the EU- so all this quasi moral crap from the Germans about the need for the Greeks to pay for their sins is based on a proaganda campaign worthy of Joseph Goebbels himself- it's a 'Big Lie' designed to conceal the reality that the bankers of France and Germany were facing a meltdown and the only way to save them was to load debt onto the people of Greece, then take that borrowed money and use it to buy up the toxic debts of the bankers and so save the system.

The reality is that the Greek people have paid a severe price for this strategy and they deserve to be treated with respect and compassion- not characterized as lazy spendthrifts who should to be left to twist in the wind to suffer for their 'sins'.

The EU elites have in this matter revealed themselves to be vendictive hypocritical little sh*ts, posturing about the morality of debt obligations while all the time knowing that they sacrificed the Greeks on the alter of EU preservation.

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Another view is that the Greek economy always was a lie based on excessive and non stop borrowing, and the 25% fall in output is just revealing the emperor with no clothes. The start of the story was fudging to get into the Euro, losing control of their own destiny and ability to print their way out of the problems (if that would have worked anyway). All the rhetoric about Germany is a misdirection to avoid facing up to socialist failings.

Sounds a bit like the lie that was, and probably still is, the UK economy. But Greece is an example of what happens if you believe the lie that borrowing for public sector purposes is an investment. No it bloody well isn't, it is a liability for someone. Either future generations have to cut back on their fair share or the current generation will have to pay eventually by their savings been stolen by monetisation. Running a deficit during periods of economic expansion on the basis of jam today is theft pure and simple. It is also immoral.

Edited by crashmonitor

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I cannot know of course, but the belief at the time was that a Greek default would have had catastrophic consequences for the EU banking sector and possibly the global economy.
Don't get me wrong here-I'm not arguing that this should have been allowed to happen- what I object to is the blatant propaganda that the money funneled into Greece was intended to help the Greeks alone- while in reality it was a bailout not of the Greeks but of the entire EU banking system and by extension the entire Euro area.
So now- when the Germans insist that the Greeks alone should pay the costs for this bailout in terms of 'austerity', including cutting pensions and health care, I call this rank hypocrisy.
Think of it this way- if Wonga responded to people who got into deep debt on their loans by lending them even more money so that they could service that debt we would call that the lowest form of loan sharking- but this is precisely what the people at the highest levels of the EU did to the Greeks- fearing the consequnces of a default they conspired with the corrupt Greek goverment of that time to foist even more debt onto the people of Greece-not in a sincere attempt to help the Greeks but to avoid the meltdown of the Euro system and the German and French Banks who had recklessly lent the Greek state the money (Correctly assuming that they would be bailed out if anything went wrong.)
It may well be that preventing a Greek default was-at that time- a vital thing to do- but to present this action a 'rescue' of the Greek people and as a result demand severe hardship from those people as a payment for this 'rescue' is pure unadulaterated bullsh*t.
What Greece needed was debt restructuing, not more loans- and everyone understood this to be the case at the time. But since this restructuring was impossible for the reasons described above the choice was made to offer more debt- again not in the interests of the Greeks specifically but in the wider interest of the Euro area and the global economy.
The Greek 'bailout' was in reality a bailout of the EU- so all this quasi moral crap from the Germans about the need for the Greeks to pay for their sins is based on a proaganda campaign worthy of Joseph Goebbels himself- it's a 'Big Lie' designed to conceal the reality that the bankers of France and Germany were facing a meltdown and the only way to save them was to load debt onto the people of Greece, then take that borrowed money and use it to buy up the toxic debts of the bankers and so save the system.
The reality is that the Greek people have paid a severe price for this strategy and they deserve to be treated with respect and compassion- not characterized as lazy spendthrifts who should to be left to twist in the wind to suffer for their 'sins'.
The EU elites have in this matter revealed themselves to be vindictive hypocritical little sh*ts, posturing about the morality of debt obligations while all the time knowing that they sacrificed the Greeks on the alter of EU preservation.

That sounds a fair summary to me. However, it also goes to show how useless moral judgements are & how unproductive the ranting & abusive language that follows.

Loan sharks are those who charge high rates of interest, & take advantage of people who wish to borrow money & do not care how much they have to repay.

Historically some people were in want of the necessities of life (food, shelter, warmth) & used loan sharks to survive. Before the rise of credit unions etc. they were the only lenders the poor could turn to. These have been superceded (after much evolution) by the modern welfare state. Unfortunately it is a fact that some people will use welfare money to fund spending on other items that are not physically necessary & it has proved impossible to persuade such people not to do this, with the result that it is increasingly difficult to persuade others who are taxed to provide such welfare to willingly supply that tax.

In the case of Greece it appears that the population voted for a government who were going to greatly improve their wealth & benefits by joining an organisation (the EU) without any effort on their part. It seems that nobody was prepared to point out (or nobody who was listened to) that this was to be achieved by borrowing large sums of money which would have to be repaid at a rate of interest (whether it was into loan shark territory I do not know). So it could be argued that the Greeks, as a nation, should have thought a little harder about the consequences of their governments actions.

I suspect we have done something not totally dissimilar; in fact it is my contention that all democracies tend to do this. Restraint & moderation are not the sole determinants of human behaviour.

Edited by cock-eyed octopus

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Odd.

Just a forum but whatever the subject matter here some posters throw bait then make for a waste of time and energy trying to engage in logical evidenced discussion, particularly when they initiate it, so consider yourself fortunate with a block.

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In the case of Greece it appears that the population voted for a government who were going to greatly improve their wealth & benefits by joining an organisation (the EU) without any effort on their part. It seems that nobody was prepared to point out (or nobody who was listened to) that this was to be achieved by borrowing large sums of money which would have to be repaid at a rate of interest (whether it was into loan shark territory I do not know). So it could be argued that the Greeks, as a nation, should have thought a little harder about the consequences of their governments actions

I don't disagree with that- what I object to is the claim that the bailouts that followed were designed to help the Greek people- they were not. To help the Greek people their debt needs to be restructured- instead they were forced to take on even more debt- and even Wonga did not stoop so low as to lend more money to people who could not pay back their loans- but the 'leaders' of the European Union did exactly that to Greece-so any abuse heaped upon them is well deserved I would argue.

If the European Governments wanted to bail out French and German banks in order to save them-and the system- from the idiotic loans they made to a corrupt Greek Elite then fine- but to hide this action behind a claim that they were 'helping' the ordinary people of Greece is blatant propaganda of the most pernicious kind.

And to now demand that those same people be driven into penury to provide cover for their bailout of those Bankers is not only hypocritical but immoral.

Perhaps I was stupid to think so, but I used to believe that the EU stood for something, that it had some kind of moral standards- but it's clear to me now that this is not the case. The reason they will drive the Greeks into the ground is because to restructure that debt will finally crystallize the losses they have foisted on their own people- and they would rather torture an entire people than have the moral courage to face their own populations with the reality that they were never bailing out the Greeks, they were bailing out their own Bankers with their own taxpayers money- money that is never going to be paid back.

Edited by wonderpup

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I don't disagree with that- what I object to is the claim that the bailouts that followed were designed to help the Greek people- they were not. To help the Greek people their debt needs to be restructured- instead they were forced to take on even more debt- and even Wonga did not stoop so low as to lend more money to people who could not pay back their loans- but the 'leaders' of the European Union did exactly that to Greece-so any abuse heaped upon them is well deserved I would argue.

If the European Governments wanted to bail out French and German banks in order to save them-and the system- from the idiotic loans they made to a corrupt Greek Elite then fine- but to hide this action behind a claim that they were 'helping' the ordinary people of Greece is blatant propaganda of the most pernicious kind.

And to now demand that those same people be driven into penury to provide cover for their bailout of those Bankers is not only hypocritical but immoral.

Perhaps I was stupid to think so, but I used to believe that the EU stood for something, that it had some kind of moral standards- but it's clear to me now that this is not the case. The reason they will drive the Greeks into the ground is because to restructure that debt will finally crystallize the losses they have foisted on their own people- and they would rather torture an entire people than have the moral courage to face their own populations with the reality that they were never bailing out the Greeks, they were bailing out their own Bankers with their own taxpayers money- money that is never going to be paid back.

You can heap abuse all you like, but it doesn't help the situation. If anyone thinks finance is driven by morality they are extremely naive; I would argue that the desire of Greeks to achieve greater material prosperity without further effort from themselves is also immoral - unless they maintain they are being underpaid for their efforts, in which case the moral thing to do would be to improve the lot of severely underpaid third world workers. The behaviour of the Greeks post EU membership leads me to the conclusion that morality had little to do with their conduct.

The only reason a firm like Wonga mightn't lend to people who already couldn't pay back loans is hardly moral; it's a fear of prosecution or not being repaid. Banks get away with what they do because governments are frightened of the consequences of banks failing. Hardly news I know, but true, & nothing to do with morality. Personally i'd have made bank directors personally responsible for bank debt from day 1. That'd have slowed them down a bit I reckon.

I honestly think morality as a model of human behaviour is pretty useless. I am a thoroughgoing cause-&-effect guy, from the Big Bang onwards. No guilt. No innocence. No free will. Psychopaths were always going to be psychopaths, Saints always saintly. All you can do is the best by the people you know & love, & help the rest as much as you can. Moral posturing is pointless at best, & all too often leads to hatred & violence.

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You can heap abuse all you like, but it doesn't help the situation. If anyone thinks finance is driven by morality they are extremely naive; I would argue that the desire of Greeks to achieve greater material prosperity without further effort from themselves is also immoral - unless they maintain they are being underpaid for their efforts, in which case the moral thing to do would be to improve the lot of severely underpaid third world workers. The behaviour of the Greeks post EU membership leads me to the conclusion that morality had little to do with their conduct.

The only reason a firm like Wonga mightn't lend to people who already couldn't pay back loans is hardly moral; it's a fear of prosecution or not being repaid. Banks get away with what they do because governments are frightened of the consequences of banks failing. Hardly news I know, but true, & nothing to do with morality. Personally i'd have made bank directors personally responsible for bank debt from day 1. That'd have slowed them down a bit I reckon.

I honestly think morality as a model of human behaviour is pretty useless. I am a thoroughgoing cause-&-effect guy, from the Big Bang onwards. No guilt. No innocence. No free will. Psychopaths were always going to be psychopaths, Saints always saintly. All you can do is the best by the people you know & love, & help the rest as much as you can. Moral posturing is pointless at best, & all too often leads to hatred & violence.

If there is no morality then what is wrong with hatred & violence? Nothing at all- hatred and violence in the amoral universe you describe are just as valid as any other form of behavior.

Unless you disagree with that in which case it does matter that the people who run our system operate in terms of a moral framework and what the EU is doing in Greece is immoral because they are in effect punishing the Greek people for a situation that the EU itself has chosen to perpetuate.

The solution to unpayable debt is restructuring that debt- it is not loading on even more debt in an effort to cover up the failure of the bankers and the politicians to operate the Euro system in a sane and intelligent manner.

But rather than have the moral courage to admit this failure of both themselves and the system they support, the fiction is continued by the 'Troika' that by financially torturing the Greeks this debt will magically become viable again- a claim that even the IMF has admitted-privately- is nonsense.

So what are we to make of an EU elite that would rather see ordinary European people go without food or healthcare than admit they made a mistake? Are these the kind of people you want to have any say in your future? Is the ongoing collapse of Greek society really a price worth paying to keep these people in power?

I don't think it is.

Edited by wonderpup

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The solution to unpayable debt is restructuring that debt- it is not loading on even more debt in an effort to cover up the failure of the bankers and the politicians to operate the Euro system in a sane and intelligent manner.

I'm not so certain that this is a truism. Many people refinance their debt at lower interest rates in order to make it more payable. This is what happened with Greece, they refinanced at cheaper rates. So it was restructuring, just not write down. I 100% agree with you that it probably would have been better to write down, rather than refinance.

If it were left to the free market, Greek would have gone bust and maybe this would have been good, but maybe it would have been terrible. We don't really know.

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If there is no morality then what is wrong with hatred & violence? Nothing at all- hatred and violence in the amoral universe you describe are just as valid as any other form of behavior.

Unless you disagree with that in which case it does matter that the people who run our system operate in terms of a moral framework and what the EU is doing in Greece is immoral because they are in effect punishing the Greek people for a situation that the EU itself has chosen to perpetuate.

The solution to unpayable debt is restructuring that debt- it is not loading on even more debt in an effort to cover up the failure of the bankers and the politicians to operate the Euro system in a sane and intelligent manner.

But rather than have the moral courage to admit this failure of both themselves and the system they support, the fiction is continued by the 'Troika' that by financially torturing the Greeks this debt will magically become viable again- a claim that even the IMF has admitted-privately- is nonsense.

So what are we to make of an EU elite that would rather see ordinary European people go without food or healthcare than admit they made a mistake? Are these the kind of people you want to have any say in your future? Is the ongoing collapse of Greek society really a price worth paying to keep these people in power?

I don't think it is.

There is nothing 'wrong' with violence & hatred right & wrong are moral judgments, & such judgments have proved remarkably flexible from society to society, despite each society regarding their morality as immutable. It comes down to personal preference, which a democracy will (or should, as ours by & large does) translate into a consensus of preferences, enshrined into law.

I note with interest your concern with ordinary European people. I would suggest that their suffering is a lot less than those in other parts of the world. And I would suggest that the Greeks must bear a lot of responsibility for their situation since they voted for their government - unless you are saying the vote was rigged? So the mistake (a belief in free money) was also theirs.

And, no I son't want the EU having any say in my future. I voted against the bastards having any say in it last time around, & will do so again if offered the opportunity.

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