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Greece Vote

Discussion in 'The Swarm Lounge' started by GTNavyNuke, Jul 3, 2015.

?
  1. No (Means Do not agree with previous offer - likely exit from European Union)

  2. Yes (Means agree to try and consummate previous offer - try and stay in European Union)

Results are only viewable after voting.
  1. GTNavyNuke

    GTNavyNuke Helluva Engineer Featured Member

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    Interesting how things can get all turned around.

    I actually think (and a close reading should support this) that the German people have a culture which makes them very effective at expansion. The reason for the historical reference to previous reichs was to support that opinion. In fact, Germany has done far far more to advance it's world standing since the fall of the Berlin wall in 1989 than the US has done. What they did in assimilating East Germany and increasing their economic power is simply amazing.

    I believe that Germany has been greatly increasing its hold on the EU as France's economic power recedes. This opinion is largely based on reading a lot of stuff on CNBC and Bloomberg as well as a few weekly economic postings. In an economic union of many countries with a common currency, the strongest countries have the advantage of a weaker currency with respect to trade than if they had their own currency alone. That was my main point.

    I admit to being opinionated about Germans and their culture in that I think they are very hard working and have shown a lot of foresight in advancing their world power. They will screw Greece as much as they can since they recognize that Greece will be lost at some point from the EU (in my opinion) and to do otherwise will set a very bad precedent for Portugal, Spain and Italy where the real money lies. My opinion for the last few months has been that these "negotiations" are more about having someone else get the blame for Greece leaving the EU. It would have been easy to kick the can down the road for another year if all sides had wanted to do so.

    But to say I am bigoted is wrong; at least if the definition of bigoted is "stubborn and complete intolerance of any creed, belief, or opinion that differs from one's own." I am guilty of being opinionated, and my opinions will be based on what I believe the facts to be. When my understanding of the facts changes, hopefully my opinions will too.
     
  2. AE 87

    AE 87 Helluva Engineer

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    I appreciate your response. Still, I'm not claiming anything about you personally. I'm not judging you as a person. I made a judgment about what you wrote and in later posts acknowledged that otherwise good people can hold ethnist opinions.

    Speaking for myself, I love people which allows me to disagree with them on particular issues, or behaviors, without disliking them as people. Occasionally, I've even had to suffer this truth with u[sic]ga grads. So the sarcasm of your first paragraph is beside the point.

    If you want to discuss my response to your post, respond to my question about comparing France to Hitler.
     
  3. AE 87

    AE 87 Helluva Engineer

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    Just so I understand, would you consider the following statement bigoted?
    I admit to being very opinionated about the blacks and their culture in that I think they are very lazy but have shown a lot of foresight in their manipulation of white guilt for domestic power. They will screw the Whites as much as possible since the Whites will lose their place eventually (in my opinion) thru immigration. ​
    Now, in my opinion, this statement is on its face bigoted.

    Still, I agree with you that the definition of bigotry hinges on concern for facts regardless of prejudice. Imo, on this issue and the one you raised in the ugay thread, bigotry is reflected in an unwillingness to discuss rationally one's opinions with someone who disagrees. A bigot dismisses disagreement as arising from the stupidity or evil of the other person.

    So, I await your responses to the question of this thread and the other.
     
  4. jwsavhGT

    jwsavhGT Moderator Staff Member

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    Have a nice evening folks. I wish each of you a safe & happy Independence Day.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jul 3, 2015
    TechnicalPossum and GTNavyNuke like this.
  5. AE 87

    AE 87 Helluva Engineer

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    You too! God bless!

    I hope to continue our discussion later.
     
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  6. TechnicalPossum

    TechnicalPossum Helluva Engineer

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    Getting back to the original question...

    Greece never should have been allowed to adopt the Euro due to the weakness of the economy. Once they got in, the EU countries, the IMF, and the EBC have spent a good chunk of the past 4 years propping up their economy. At this point, Germany is the single largest stakeholder at 21% of Greece's sovereign debt, which is why they have been swinging the biggest stick at the table (France is the second largest holder at 13.5%). It has nothing to do with expansionism. It has to do with protecting the German investment in Greece.
     
    AE 87 likes this.
  7. cyptomcat

    cyptomcat Helluva Engineer

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    Also getting back to the original questions, some of the reasons Europeans ended up in this situation is that they knowingly encouraged or ignored corrupt Greek behavior:
    • They repeatedly bribed Greeks into buying their stuff including expensive weapons, especially the Germans (eg Siemens and Ferrostaal) (Link 1)
    • They gave money to Greece, so that Greece can in return pay European banks. (Link 2) In effect, the banks were bailed out for dangerous investments they made like the Greek bonds (Link 2). Mind you, these are the banks that also made risky Wall Street investments involved with the sub-prime mortgage crisis. (Link 3)
    I saw an interesting comparison, to paraphrase: If bank leaders keep making dodgy loans to suspect customers, most likely because they want the high risk returns for their bank and bonuses for themselves, would you blame the suspect customer or the bank leader? We don't trust the former, but we do trust the latter when we use tax money to back our deposits at their institutions.

    Back to the Greek side. They are obviously corrupt, and IMO Europe has ignored that, and did not deal with it properly. Greeks did somewhat follow the European and IMF suggestions, and improved its primary surplus to the goal of about 3%, yet the Greek GDP suffered in proportions that haven't been seen anywhere since post-WW2 problems. EU and IMF projections have been bad. And mind you, that was with non-Syriza governments. Considering the fruitless negotiations since January (which are actually similar to the 2010 negotiations in terms of drama), I think it's time to stop the drama and vote No. After the default, negotiate a haircut, and try to grow back. Voting Yes would probably mean a new political controversy, a new election (months?) might be necessary. I am not 100% sure about this, but I just have low expectations of the Eurozone after the deals and negotiations of the last 5-10 years.

    Links:
    (1) http://www.theguardian.com/world/2012/apr/19/greece-military-spending-debt-crisis
    (2) http://www.newstatesman.com/politic...-their-governments-mistakes-and-errors-troika
    (3) http://www.ft.com/intl/cms/s/0/dfe35888-4ca6-11df-9977-00144feab49a.html#axzz3f1gYHbvy
     
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  8. AE 87

    AE 87 Helluva Engineer

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    Good post.

    Fwiw, I interpreted link 1 differently than the impression I got from you. I read your post as suggesting Germans et al were bribing Greeks to spend money they weren't otherwise going to spend. However, I read link 1 as saying the Greeks had their own reasons for spending the money and the bribes were for the with whom.

    I'm not sure about the next bit but I got the impression that the Greeks had not been completely honest with the creditor banks so that the riskiness of their investment was unknown.
     
  9. cyptomcat

    cyptomcat Helluva Engineer

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    I didn't mean that Europeans encouraged more spending (even though an argument can be madr for that, it wasn't my intention).

    I meant the Europeans encouraged more corrupt behavior by taking part in the corruption (bribes).
     
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  10. TechnicalPossum

    TechnicalPossum Helluva Engineer

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    784
    Even if the spending was encouraged, at what point is the borrower (Greece) responsible for their own decisions? Just because someone will lend you the money doesn't mean you should bear no burden or responsibility if you take it and can't pay it back.

    I think another factor in the whole issue with Greece was the structure of the economy. It is/was primarily a tourism based economy. With the 2008-2010 recession causing a decrease in disposable income throughout Europe, their economy was disproportionately harmed in all likelihood. But, with the weakness of the Drachma, it was still cost efficient for northern Europeans to vacation there. With the shift to the Euro, the cost efficiency for a Greek vacation diminished.

    Additionally, there was already one haircut on the debt, 50% in the end of 2011 (citation - http://www.marketwatch.com/story/greek-bondholders-to-take-50-haircut-2011-10-26). I suspect the appetite for another one be limited, but will happen in the end.

    Honestly, I am not sure what would be the best way to vote for long term stability. I think that a No vote could cause a withdrawal from the Euro and a high chance of causing hyperinflation if the Drachma was brought back as I can't see creditors placing much value on a new fiat currency which is being printed due to a debt crisis. There is also the fact that the debt is in Euros and not Drachmas, meaning that Greece would have the challenge of finding a buyer for the new currency in order to pay any of the debt. But, a Yes vote would not change anything unless the Greek government takes a similar approach as Cypress and places a levy on bank deposits to gather the capital needed to make the debt payment. Their economy has essentially stalled with no real plan to revive it. And I concur that a Yes vote would likely cause a snap election less than 6 months after the Greek national election.

    The scary part in this is that Spain, Portugal, and Italy are not in particularly better shape.
     
  11. GTNavyNuke

    GTNavyNuke Helluva Engineer Featured Member

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    Looks like it's going to be a slight no outcome. Maybe now the EU, IMF and ECB will have to renegotiate a reduction in principal amount and stretch out the terms. One thing I read was that in 2011, the private creditors took 75% to get paid and get out but the EU, IMF and ECB didn't agree to any reduction.

    Here was a good article about why a Bloomberg writer would have held his nose and voted yes. Where he and I differ is that he thinks there is a reasonable chance that Greece could become viable in the EU. I liked these thoughts (my bolding): http://www.bloombergview.com/articles/2015-07-05/greece-should-vote-yes-and-europe-should-be-ashamed " .....
    Talks about debt relief now rather than later have been his (Tspiras) only hope of telling Greeks he'd won them something. The concession would have cost the creditors nothing -- less than nothing, measured against the costs they now face. Yet they refused it.

    In the beginning, I think, this was out of ordinary bureaucratic mulishness. Rules are rules. By degrees, and under great provocation, this characteristic EU trait became a determination to show Tsipras who was boss.

    The right thing was to help Tsipras lose with dignity -- to show a little respect to the Greeks who'd voted him into office out of despair. Any instinct of that kind gave way to the view that Tsipras and his supporters had to kneel. That would encourage future backsliders to get in line, and Greece had it coming anyway. That mindset, in turn, formed itself into the idea that the euro system, and maybe the EU itself, might be better off without Greece."

    This is a real Greek drama.
     
  12. GTNavyNuke

    GTNavyNuke Helluva Engineer Featured Member

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    7,148
    Wow, 62% so far voting no. That will really help the Greeks negotiate if there is a negotiation to be had. "With 85 percent of votes counted, 62 percent of voters backed Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras and his Coalition of the Radical Left, or Syriza, by voting “no” to the latest proposals for spending cuts and tax increases. Thirty-eight percent voted “yes,” less than opinion polls predicted, according to results from the Interior Ministry." http://www.bloomberg.com/news/artic...les-on-europe-in-austerity-referendum-triumph

    Now the EU (er, really Germany o_O but I'll be politically correct) has to decide whether to let Greece go, with the geopolitical instability on the southern flank or buy them off bail out by bail out. I think they have to let them go; they aren't stupid and won't throw good money after bad. They tried to stay at 100% payback and will get a lot less.

    And here's the real motivator: "The question is whether leaders can negotiate with a government that has rejected their conditions for staying in the 19-member currency union, after forcing Portugal and Ireland to follow through on similar measures and complete bailout programs."

    Although this is a really interesting drama, there are going to be a lot of people forced to take losses. As usual, those with money and power will force most of the losses on those who don't have the power. Just the way it is. And sad.
     
  13. GTNavyNuke

    GTNavyNuke Helluva Engineer Featured Member

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    Yes I would consider this statement to be bigoted. What you have done is substitute races for countries. My point is that countries have cultures, identities and resources which manifest themselves in different ways. Germany has been very expansionist but the Swiss, who I assume are the same race, have not been. This may be due to resources available, but it is not due to the race which I assume they share.

    I also believe that men run faster and are stronger than women at the same age. And I believe that as you get older you slow down in your running speed. So I must be a sex and age bigot too.
     
  14. AE 87

    AE 87 Helluva Engineer

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    Well, at least you admit it.
     
  15. GTNavyNuke

    GTNavyNuke Helluva Engineer Featured Member

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    :D I do. Too many people are afraid to say politically incorrect things that are factually correct.

    But back to Greece, there is going to be a lot of pain in the near term (maybe the long term too) if they leave the EU. I've been to the Greek isles maybe 4 times in my life and they along with the people are among the most beautiful in the world. I'm not a fan of Athens, the city, but am of the Greek isles.
     
  16. AE 87

    AE 87 Helluva Engineer

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    Well, it should be interesting. The best thing for the Euro and Eurozone seems to be to let Greece go. But, the poor Greeks who were convinced to vote themselves hostage. Maybe Europe will pay the ransom.
     
  17. LibertyTurns

    LibertyTurns Helluva Engineer

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    From each according to their ability, to each according to their need. I say let those bloody socialists wallow in their own excrement. They've finally run out of other people's money.

    I'll do have 1 question: How far behind is the US? We're spending every dime we can borrow and unraveling our mess with be a million times more painful than Greece.
     
  18. AE 87

    AE 87 Helluva Engineer

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    It's hard to say. We stopped reporting spending and debt 3 or 4 months ago, iiuc.
     
  19. awbuzz

    awbuzz Helluva Engineer

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    Yet so many are too blind to the fact that the US is headed down the same path. We've trained folks to expect a bail out in business and in life.

    The "government" opting to pay for birthing babies more than once (which should only be okay in extreme circumstances) is ridiculous. ... let me stop before I go into a diatribe about wasteful spending and lack of personal responsibility that seems to have become an acceptable norm.
     
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  20. AE 87

    AE 87 Helluva Engineer

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    It seems to me the Eurozone has no motivation to negotiate with Greece except the devastation to the Greek economy and people during the weeks it takes to crank up the drachma again. The loss of a member nation hurts but probably not as much as saying the membership rules don't matter.

    Still, I expect them to blink.
     
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