Tags: greece | greek | bailout | grexit

Disastrous to Bail Out Greece

Thursday, 16 July 2015 10:17 AM Current | Bio | Archive

Ahhh. The legendary Greek work ethic that has so many living the dream!

Because of massive debt, corruption, runaway spending, a cultural aversion to paying taxes, a longer-living population, and immense entitlements (doled out via a massively underfunded pension system), Greece had a huge problem. The piper finally came, but there was no more money.

So the European Union braintrust (an oxymoron) decided to bail out Greece, a combination of increasing the money supply (contributing to inflation) and using other people's money, namely, other European taxpayers.

And in return for the sacrifice others made — billions in bailouts and forgiving 50 percent of Greece's debt — what was asked? Significant retirement and pension reforms that would, in theory, get Greece back on solid financial footing, if that were possible for a nation whose debt exceeded an unfathomable 180 percent of its GDP.

The original bailout was made, with self-congratulating, albeit clueless, Euro-technocrats preaching that all would be well.

And things were “great,” as the message of “austerity” was received with a wink: "On with business as usual."

Every time Europe threatened to cut off funding, the Greek unions would mobilize, strike, and throw firebombs. Not willing to cut their losses, the EU did exactly what Greece knew it would: open up its coffers, again and again.

The EU issued an ultimatum: get serious about austerity, or face bankruptcy and EU expulsion. Yet did anyone really believe the Greeks, who riot on cue whenever anyone threatens to end the party, would voluntarily turn off the free-money spigot?

Was it remotely realistic to think the Greek politicians would enact unpopular but necessary reforms?

The latest development, which somehow took Europe by surprise, was obvious to all but the Euro-geniuses, as the Greeks voted to pass the buck on austerity measures in a nationwide referendum.

To be fair, the vote wasn’t unanimous. There were 30 Turkish ex-pats who voted “yes” just for spite.

Oh to be Greek!

Yet no one is offering solutions about how to grow economies. Instead, they are merely buying time, kicking the can down the road and praying the inevitable implosion occurs on someone else's watch.

The Ponzi scheme of socialist-leaning Western economies is quickly approaching implosion status. That's what happens when socialism and laziness trump free markets and personal initiative.

Many Greeks are betting the Europeans are simply invested too deeply to walk away now. Despite Greece spitting at those who have been keeping it afloat, many EU nations continue to offer such an olive branch.

Some call that sympathy. It’s not. It’s insanity.

The Greeks haven’t yet comprehended that money doesn’t grow on olive trees, and that those who work (mainly the Germans) are getting sick of giving their money to those who don’t. You can’t get welfare checks from a stone, so unless the Greeks become sober very quickly, their fat-cat lifestyle will end, one way or the other.

And then, their 25 percent unemployment rate will jump, poverty (and crime) will skyrocket, more banks will close, and the crisis will become endemic.

Ironically, the solution is to bolt from the EU. Long-term, Greece would control its own destiny. By returning to the drachma, it would control its own monetary policy.

The drachma’s value would be lower than the euro, which would significantly boost Greek exports. That, it turn, would spur manufacturing and, at least for the Greeks willing to put in an honest day’s work, increase employment. And tourism would see a huge surge, bringing in billions.

Greece would finally regain its sovereignty, no longer subjecting itself to the onerous laws of European bureaucrats hell-bent on self-righteous social engineering agendas.

Greece can chart its own course by remembering where it came from, drawing on the strength of an amazing people with an incomparable history. Or it can continue to wallow in self-pity, pretending the gods will save it from itself, the ultimate Greek tragedy that even Hercules couldn’t fix.

Chris Freind is an independent columnist, television commentator, and investigative reporter who operates his own news bureau, Freindly Fire Zone Media. Read more reports from Chris Freind — Click Here Now.

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Ironically, the solution is to bolt from the EU. Long-term, Greece would control its own destiny. By returning to the drachma, it would control its own monetary policy.
greece, greek, bailout, grexit
Thursday, 16 July 2015 10:17 AM
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