Give Greece A Chance

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This afternoon.

Anti-Irish Water and austerity protesters in solidarity with Greece outside Leinster House, Dublin this afternoon.

Earlier: Tsip Happens


(Sam Boal/Photocall Ireland)

Meanwhile…

mercille:Jones

Julien Mercille (left) and Owen Jones at the Sinn Fein Summer School last weekend

Syriza has to be broken, or so the EU great powers decided long before it was even elected. But how? First: compel it to impose another dose of disastrous austerity, in violation of the party’s clear electoral mandate. This would inflict on it the same fate as the Greek social-democratic party Pasok, which so alienated its support base that its vote plummeted from 44 per cent in 2009 to 4.7 per cent by 2015.

A second possible strategy: strangle Greece’s economy until the people decide that the lesser catastrophe would be to resign themselves to endless austerity within the eurozone. This is the current course of action.

The third strategy: force a default and drive Greece out. However, this might expose the eurozone’s Achilles heel. A precedent would be set: the eurozone would no longer be an indivisible currency union, but a club that weaker members can leave or from which they can be de facto ejected. Italy, say, could find itself the subject of extreme market speculation….

The elites are determined to end the revolt against austerity in Greece (Owen Jones, New Statesman)

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56 thoughts on “Give Greece A Chance

  1. Drogg

    Where are people getting all these greek flags? Did they have them just hanging round their house or did they have to order them off amazon?

    1. Sam

      How many flags do you count there? I see two Greek flags. For all we know they are being held up by Greek people.

      1. Drogg

        But its not just this protest i have seen them all over the place the last few days, are you indicating they are just reusing flags?

        1. Sam

          There are Greek people living in Dublin, and yes, I’d say the flags are sturdy enough for multiple outings.

          1. FistoRoboto

            As someone in the Greek Community here in Ireland, there are only about 300 of us in the entire country.

          2. Lilly

            Really, why are there no Greek restaurants so? I fancy smashing a few plates from time to time. If you were in Greece, what way would you vote in the referendum on Sunday?

        1. St. John Smythe

          Hummus is Greek now? Ah jaysis, did they claim it from the Middle East like the British claim our music stars and sportsmen?

  2. fluffybiscuits

    Piece from humanrights.ie views the situation from Greece from a different angle. Austerity is presented as the article points out as the lesser of two evils. There is simiply no other way. For austerity to work it requires at least an ignoring of democracy and the vote from the Greek people is sending shockwaves throughout the Eurozone as no other country would dare do this. Ireland got its belly rubbed and a few treats from Frau Merkel for doing its bidding but Greece has bared its teeth and is snarling somewhat even only for a little while . At the core of the Eurozone is the idea that the only way out of a situation is to impose austerity, nothing could be further from the truth. Iceland devalued its way out of recession, put in place proper banking controls and arrested those whom damaged the Icelandic national economy including Geir Harde their former head of government.

    http://humanrights.ie/uncategorized/the-greek-financial-crisis-and-the-rhetoric-of-emergency/

    1. Paolo

      Iceland is still in the poo and it was in a completely different situation with different creditors and vastly different levels of public and private debt.

    2. Yawn

      So remind us how one country can devalue within a currency union? Greece wants to stay in the Euro, so their only option is “internal devaluation”.

      The biggest problem with discussions on this topic is the constant suggestion that painless simple solutions are out there. And by the way, Iceland is still on its knees and went through a painful devaluation process.

      1. Continuity Jay-Z

        They are playing better football now as a result of downgrading from wealthy fishermen to street urchins.

    3. Miko

      You can’t vote reality away. Austerity is a horribly misused and overused word – what it means in this context is that the Greek people want everyone else in Europe including poorer countries to massively subsidise their lifestyle forever and they won’t make any structural reforms to change that. What about the human rights of the poor in Slovakia who have less money at their disposal because The Greeks have spent it on themselves…

      1. scottser

        the greeks didn’t ‘spend it on themselves’. they were made spend it on refinancing bad bank debt.

    4. PPads

      Greece employs one in three within the civil service which is higher than Northern Ireland surely? I was shocked to find out that children of Greek Civil Servants could inherit their parent’s pensions but more to find that in some cases the same applies here in Ireland.

      1. Norbet Cooper

        Look at Greek Railways, where their Transport minister said it would be cheaper for them to send all it’s passengers by Taxi then running trains.

        1. PPads

          And the state within the state known as CIÉ are not covered by FOI why? My point is that we have the same sh|t going on here.

  3. Paolo

    The money they owe, they owe to us and the other citizens of Europe. They HAVE NOT reformed the issues with their economy.

    They borrowed money from us so that they could keep the lights on and now, suddenly, those loans are some sort of insidious weapon used to oppress the Greek people?

    1. scottser

      previous right-wing governments borrowed money to pay for their insolvent bank’s debts. the upper echelons of greek society is as corrupt as fuk and they are well insulated from any crisis, so it’s the average citizen who is saddled with this debt. if you mean ‘they borrowed money to keep the lights on’ you mean keeping the lights on joe popodopolis’s mansion and yacht, then you are probably right.

      1. Yawn

        Not correct. The debts were used to find government expenditure and avoid levying and collecting taxes the way every other developed economy does.

      2. Miko

        None of what you just stated is true. None of it. In fact it’s a complete rewriting of history.

    2. Mr. T.

      They can have my part of the debt. I don’t mind. I’d rather have a dignified Europe than one oppressed and humiliated by the wealthy few who have no respect for proper citizenry.

    3. Domestos

      Twice. This will be the third emergency loan. It’s been going on for five years. And the ECB are still providing ELA.

    4. f

      Let’s set fire to that strawman. According to Karl Otto Pohl, former head of the Bundesbank: ‘[The Greek bailout] was about protecting German banks, but especially the French banks, from debt write offs. On the day that the rescue package was agreed on, shares of French banks rose by up to 24 percent. Looking at that, you can see what this was really about — namely, rescuing the banks and the rich Greeks.’
      http://www.spiegel.de/international/germany/former-central-bank-head-karl-otto-poehl-bailout-plan-is-all-about-rescuing-banks-and-rich-greeks-a-695245.html

      They really, really didn’t ‘borrow money from us to keep the lights on’.

        1. Kieran NYC

          Well if they weren’t telling the government they weren’t paying tax, they’d hardly tell them they had a job now, either?

  4. Lady Chatterly

    I always thought Mr Mercille was hot. But he can move back to France anytime he wants. Hello Mr Jones!!!! Very handsome. I said HELLO Mr Jones!!!!

    1. Mister Mister

      Of course he won’t, it was a PEACEFUL PROTEST ! PEACEFUL PROTEST ! LEAVE HIM A-LOW-WIN YOU BLEEDIN SCUMBAG ! SHAME ON YOU, SHAME ON YOU.

      You know, those idiots typical response.

  5. Owen

    The global PC brigade at is again. Why the F**K would we want to stand with Greece??! Forget solidarity and austerity, they have left a negotiation and are trying to put Europe in a hard place. Let them, and let them leave. They borrow 250% GDP per annum and it’s increasing and are refusing to make an effort to address that on a national level. We borrow 103% and its decreasing. We pay high tax, they pay very little.

    AND….. While I’m on a coffee rant. They are a passive dictatorship. Those harping on about ‘democracy’ with this referendum, open your eyes! Having a referendum at the final hurdle of a loan payment is not ‘putting it to the people’. It’s hiding behind your people. While then coming out and saying ‘vote no’ to stop Europe humiliating us is misleading and arrogant.

    If / when they leave the Euro/pe they will quickly become a 3rd world country. I don’t want that, but without sweeping national reforms there is little option. They are making no effort, why defend that.

      1. Owen

        They are making ZERO effort for national reforms. Z.E.R.O They ARE paying at the tooth for their borrowing, yes, but no effort made to prevent the corruption or change how they are opperating.

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