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Greece: Certainly going down
  • As nowadays the right to health care depends on the number of days that someone has worked during the previous year, the long-term unemployed and the uninsured workers lose their access to health care. In the meantime, the health services offered to the general population have been reduced, since several public hospitals and prevention centers have been shut down as a result of the cuts (40%) in the health and welfare budget, combined with the introduction of increased fees even for the insured patients. These problems, combined with the critical situation of the public hospitals still functioning (many suffer by tragic shortages in personnel and even in basic material, such as medicines, disinfectants, bandages etc.) and the inability of many citizens (mainly pensioners) to pay the much increased share for their medicaments, has led even the EU’s Centre for Disease Control to warn against an imminent outbreak of viral infections, hospital viruses, contagious diseases, HIV etc.

    The rapid decline of the heating oil consumption is another indication of the ongoing extreme pauperization of the population: compared to 2011 (a year that was marked already by a first sharp decrease in heating oil consumption), there is a 75% decrease of the consumption in December 2012, despite the cold spell in the biggest part of the country. A large part of the population is suffering today by cold because of the unforeseen successive increase of taxes imposed on heating oil by the Troika and the government, which resulted to the sharp rise of its price (average prices per liter 2009: 0,57 euro, 2010: 0,71 euro, 2011: 0,91 euro, and in 2012: 1,37 euro).

    The hunger is spreading rapidly all over the country, especially in the urban areas, for the first time since the era of the Nazi occupation. There are no available data on national level, but the case of the Diocese of Neapolis and Stavroupolis (two suburbs of Thessaloniki in Northern Greece) is a characteristic example: in 2010 the soup kitchens of the Diocese offered meals to 1.387 destitute and homeless citizens, in 2011 to 2.445 citizens, and in 2012 to 5.223 citizens. Another example is the desperate call of teachers’ unions in several regions of the country, informing the authorities that many pupils arrive hungry at school, with constantly increasing cases of daily faint of pupils in the classrooms due to hunger. Moreover, the hospital doctors’ association has announced that a constantly increasing number of infants are brought to public hospitals with severe stomach upsets – the reason is that their parents cannot afford to feed them with the (very expensive) baby milk and other infant feeding products; instead, they buy the cheapest products for adults.

    According to the European Commission itself, between 2009 and 2011 Greece has suffered the most violent drop in “real household disposable income”: the Greek households lost 17% of their real disposable income, while the other Southern European households counted income losses ranging from 5% (Ireland) to 8% (Spain). And the data for 2012 are yet to come… Most of the Greek workers and employees, both in the private and in the public sector (as well as the pensioners), have lost 30% or 40% or even 50% of their income during these nightmarish three years. And, yet, they are considered as the "lucky" ones, since they continue to have a job! A job that now is paid € 586 (gross!) per month, while those under 25 receive a monthly salary of € 511 (always gross!). The reality is even worse, though: In the private sector, many employers are blackmailing the workers and employees and oblige them to accept “salaries” of € 300, of course without any social insurance. On top, many employers (including “established” multinational firms and big enterprises) are not paying even these ridiculous salaries during many months. Thus, they transform their employees into hostages who continue to work without payment, hoping to receive sometime at least a part of their due salaries.

  • 25 Replies sorted by
  • it was and is a mistake to continue to keep Greece in the euro - In 2010 you would have already had to go back to the drachma, so that the country ever comes back on your feet - so that is never what - the Euro is Bullshit for Greece, Spain, Portugal, Italie, Zypern . . .

  • don't think that'd make much of a difference - leaving the euro would mean isolation and serious credit downgrade. Either way there's no way but down for Greece imho

  • ...really ?? ....look at Iceland ! The Eurozone is where people need to draw the line on globalist banksters. If not...things will certainly get worse.

  • iceland was the first one so they got away with it.. also the population is far far smaller. Perhaps you're right that greece would've done better by exiting the euro, but it would've been a disaster either way.

  • the real mistake was to let the Southerners go into the euro - and they may never be the economic level of the North European reach and that's the dilemma - the best thing would be fully classified and take back the euro as an error - the euro splits Europe and evil stirs turmoil between the countries of the South and the North. we Germans are now called Nazis, even though we pay for everything in Europe. Without Germany, the European Union is dead

  • Decline of GDP and rising unemployment is predicted not just for Greece in 2013. For the latest EU forecast follow the link in Krugman's blog-post

  • the euro was just another scheme in the long line of schemes that bankers and politicians have used to stimulate the economy.. ideally it seemed like a good idea but since our banking/government nexus is corrupt to the core, the benefits were short lived and the painful outcome will be long-lived

  • even though we pay for everything in Europe. Without Germany, the European Union is dead

    If you compare euro bank injection to everything Germany "paid" you'll realise that it is not so.

    the real mistake was to let the Southerners go into the euro - and they may never be the economic level of the North European reach

    OK, issue is that north used Greece fleet and yards, food production, Spanish food, meat and other production. And no such thing as "proper economic level" exist. In US and any big country also some regionts are far from "economic level".

  • Funny thing is: i live in Germany, a small city with 130.000 people, which has debts of!! Euros. This city is totally run down, no swimming pool or nothing for the people that live there. Kindergartens etc? All fucked up. Then there are many cities like that here. Still we (i am not german i just happen to live here) are pumping all the tax money to Greece etc. People here pay 45%+ taxes. What did people in Greece or Spain pay over the last decades in taxes? I know many people in Spain who earned well and did not even pay 10%. And now everybody insults the germans as nazis. Its ridiculous. In fact i am half spanish, i know what i talk about. Yes, i see that people in Greece get fucked, people in Spain get fucked. But its their political elite that does it. While people in Germany get fucked the same way by paying ridiculous high taxes and living in run down cities.

    According to a study in by ECB germans have way lower private wealth than the people in Greece.

    Look at the Scandinavians, they pay high taxes etc., have an awesome social system and those countries are doing well. Corruption and greed, an elite that sucks the masses dry, thats the problem. And the wrong people getting blamed.

    People in the west were kinda arrogant when soviet union collapsed, said the superior system won, well apparently it was just superior for a very short time, and the simple man will pay the bill for all this mess.

  • Look at the Scandinavians, they pay high taxes etc., have an awesome social system and those countries are doing well. Corruption and greed, an elite that sucks the masses dry, thats the problem. And the wrong people getting blamed

    All this countries have their own issues. Norway being sponsor is really colony that soon will be asked to pull all the money and start investing in deep water wells so global economy could work even if bad.

  • The catastrophe that would happen if a country leaves Euro is only based on media brainwash. The north, as usual, is stealing the south. Mediterranean countries feed the north. You got your BMW.. but we have your meal! And you eat 3 times a day. When mediterranean countries unite, like south america did, everything will end.. just they keep their anti-arab campaign to stop mediterranean countries (stupid politics) from getting together. It is time for germany to pay!!!

  • The catastrophe that would happen if a country leaves Euro is only based on media brainwash. The north, as usual, is stealing the south.

    Thing is that no one is stealing. Just as resources becomes more scarce all issues - real or imaginery become apparent.

  • "Consumer debt in the Netherlands has hit 250% of available income, one of the highest levels in the world. In Spain, by comparison, it has never gone above 125%." Who is in a deep crisis?? Of course the problem is because of the PIGS Eurozone is a fraud.

  • "Spanish tax rates are higher than in France, Britain, Italy and Germany" Wall street journal..

    “All of those countries enjoy a considerably higher income per capita than Spain and thus can more easily withstand higher taxes than a poorer country. With Rajoy’s tax hike, Spain suffers from the worst of both worlds: very high taxes combined with decreasing income and employment levels. At 23%, Spain has the highest unemployment rate in the European Union.”

    All these taxes goes to pay a debt that has never been auditioned.. If this is not stealing the poor it look a lot like it

  • ...when the people stop blaming each other, and attribute appropriate blame and punishments to the globalist bankster cartel, which sadly includes ALL of our bribed politicians....and punishments include life in prison and the gallows, or the law applied by their own hands in the streets, then we might see some of that stolen wealth return to the lifeblood of the people. And that will only be the first step....because the real culprits pulling the strings of the puppet banksters and politicians will still need to be thrown from the walls of their castles into the alligator infested moats ! A little Louiee the 16th justice ! But sadly, if the citizens are so brainwashed into believing that other citizens in other countries are to blame for their problems , then they're just following the plan of the elites divide and conquer. The forced unity of Europe was always just a step in the NWO's world takeover and had absolutely nothing to do with it's citizens prosperity. When you realize your wealth is being robbed for the benefit of a few uber-rich, the revolution will begin.

  • The riot kicked off when young people set fire to cars in Husby, a suburb in the far north of Stockholm. Witnesses claim at least 100 vehicles in the area were in flames. Another fire was lit in a nearby garage, resulting in the evacuation of the apartment block. Around 50 residents were taken care of and sheltered in buses that were on hand.

  • @fulgencio: cariño, this site is called personal-view not personal-feeling :) I accept subjectivity, but oversimplification and just polarising and making just one side responsible, although not annoying me, just bores me and adds mass to the data of useless information on the internet.

    Even if your statement about north and south would be valid, which it is maybe for 5%, the north would just find another cow to milk. Germany is hardly exporting inside the european union anymore, asia and russia are much more interesting markets. The bond between Russia and Germany is getting tighter and tighter, gas and knowledge and investments are flowing. And regarding food: although sad and cynic: northern europe would find food elsewhere. Southern europe is just about to become quite irrelevant in global politics, i still wish the best of luck.

    Sad thing is the braindrain, young academics and highly educated people leaving their countries, the education system in Greece and Spain is quite good, but "the economy" cant create jobs. Lets see where all this is going to. My prediction: further movement to the right and partially to the left on the political barometer-scale. I saw an interesting documentary about the italian fascist party recently and their polical campaign for the last election. People are getting tired of their political elites, of the system that lets them run their rat race, while only the rich get richer (ok, guilty aswell of oversimplification), its almost like Colin Crouch said, post democracy, lobbyism and reign of a few large corporations, the strange survival of neo-liberalism, because the banks were too system-relevant, too big too fail.

    Sometimes i even wonder if europe will play a role at all. USA and Russia being safe with their gas, China and India growing, Brasil doing good, eventually europe might not be more than a sentimentality, an idea, a living museum of the descendants of Kant, Shakespeare, Bach, Mozart, Goethe and Rousseau...

    Has anybody been to the Bordeaux or Burgundy over the last years? A lot of rich touristes from China and Russia, buying all the best vintage wines from the high class chateaus (check the price developement of chateau petrus over the last 20 years :P), most parts of europe might already be a museum with some expensive specialities for tourists and a nice vacation stay on the cote d'azur or in Monaco, Bavaria and the swiss mountains...

  • @ kurth: i feel you. a smell of 1789 or the red october in the air, thats what we need. eat the rich, feed the poor :P

  • Yeah, because both of those glorious revolutions ended so well.

  • @kellar42: well what is the alternative to a real change? and where is all this going to right now? Switzerland is having a vox pop, a voting whether the ceos of companies shall be restricted to a maximum income of 12 times what the lowest earner in the company makes, i am pretty curious how this will end. although companies like Nestle etc already threaten to leave the country in case this will become reality....

    besides: every cycle ends, none has lasted, what we have now is a dieing patient aswell and just because it still breathes stating that its a sucess, is not looking far enough, a wrong understanding of zen here and now :P

  • Yeah, because both of those glorious revolutions ended so well.

    ...those in fear of change always rationalize by saying " do you have a plan for something better ?".

    ....sadly that's not how the dynamics of history works.

  • Only a few months ago a topic with similar type of subject still resulted in a calm discussion... now people are almost on eachothers throat... Blaming south, blaming north...

    Is this the grand proof of just how well th EU succeeded in its main (supposed) goal of keeping peace in Europe?

    Or is this exactly what some guys somewhere wanted or just a result same ol same ol greed?

  • What?! Those frozen Greek Souvlaki dinners at Walmart aren't made in Greece?

    The only problem with eating the rich is.... they are too lean, soaked with suntan lotion and life extension hormones. The rich loot with impunity but when the poor loot, the riot police move in to stop to it. Riots and looting = the poor following thier Consumerist programming, shopping at 100% discount prices!

  • The rich loot with impunity but when the poor loot, the riot police move in to stop to it

    Well said.