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Congratulations to the Greek left! The movement against austerity.... watch

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    (Original post by anastas)
    I live in Greece and personally speaking i haven't seen any substantial change neither in employment nor in economy growth. These charts may be true but people aren't numbers, the failure of Troika is shown on everyday peoples' lives.

    From my point of view, PASOK should have found other ways to solve the problem. There had been deficit problems in the country in the past too and the government didn't call out Troika or any other institution. Italy has deficit problems as well and they didn't get ''help'' from Troika.

    From your point of view, cutting wages is the way to go? I don't know how the UK media portrays the situation in Greece and i'm not sure the average European has realised what is really going on in countries like Greece, Spain, Portugal and Cyprus. Making statistics is fine, but having people getting unemployed and homeless and having Troika saying that they're really helping Greece is not.
    People are numbers whether you like it or not I'm afraid. I would completely agree with you that unemployment in Greece is far too high even still and needs to be lowered significantly even still - and it looks like the Greek economy is (or was) gaining momentum prior to Syriza's victory. The problem was that without intervention from the troika the Greek economy would probably be even worse than it is now, it's the Greece's fault again that they got themselves in this mess and no one else. Italy has problems too and did get a bailout : http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/f...lout-deal.html

    With austerity measures attached.

    Cutting wages is the way to go. If you raise them you are going to detract foreign investors from coming to the country and unemployment will most likely be falling very slowly / increase.. In addition to the fact that it is bad for small businesses. Personally I don't see Greece properly recovering for a good 10 years.


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    (Original post by Midlander)
    Nigel Farage, the man of the people who supports fox hunting and opposes gay marriage.


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    Seen what this ukip MEP thinks about gay marriage?

    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk...e-9830047.html

    It would appear that he's gay himself. Is he a homophobic homosexual?
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    (Original post by Fullofsurprises)
    Out of interest, what type of public sector worker are you? I doubt that very many have had a near-doubling of pay. The great majority have flatlined, but when you take inflation into account, most UK workers have suffered a big net drop in real incomes which is hardly made up for by a modest recent revival.

    Global living standards are a very mixed topic. Quality of life has probably fallen in many developing countries (and even developed ones) because of longer hours spent working to maintain living standards, increasing urban pollution and reduction in working conditions. The standard GDP PPP figures are strongly influenced by the growth in incomes of the corporate sector and the rich.

    In the developed world, marginalisation of vast numbers of workers, casualisation and zero-hours contracts, the mass destruction of professional work and the removal of whole tiers of employment by the digital economy are further entrenching the privileges of wealth owners and the destruction of real living standards for whole swathes of middle and working class families.
    I'm a civil servant, so haven't enjoyed progression pay unlike the majority of the public sector.

    Have the great majority flatlined? Average income has flatland, but most people earn more money as they get older, so most workers will have outpaced the average. The rest have become pensioners.
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    (Original post by MatureStudent36)
    Seen what this ukip MEP thinks about gay marriage?

    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk...e-9830047.html

    It would appear that he's gay himself. Is he a homophobic homosexual?
    Yes.

    Just as many blacks agreed with slavery.
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    (Original post by MatureStudent36)
    Seen what this ukip MEP thinks about gay marriage?

    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk...e-9830047.html

    It would appear that he's gay himself. Is he a homophobic homosexual?
    It seems to be the case. He is in agreement with his party leader anyway.
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    (Original post by Quady)
    I'm a civil servant, so haven't enjoyed progression pay unlike the majority of the public sector.

    Have the great majority flatlined? Average income has flatland, but most people earn more money as they get older, so most workers will have outpaced the average. The rest have become pensioners.
    Sophistry. You aren't comparing like with like. If you got a 65% rise (difficult to accept, but let's just speculate for a minute that's true) and that was due to age increases, promotion, bonuses, or whatever, then that isn't real increase in pay rates.

    However, increasingly I have to say I don't really find many of your points credible and short of you posting your payslips, then and now, we will have to leave it there.
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    (Original post by anastas)
    I live in Greece and personally speaking i haven't seen any substantial change neither in employment nor in economy growth. These charts may be true but people aren't numbers, the failure of Troika is shown on everyday peoples' lives.

    From my point of view, PASOK should have found other ways to solve the problem. There had been deficit problems in the country in the past too and the government didn't call out Troika or any other institution. Italy has deficit problems as well and they didn't get ''help'' from Troika.

    From your point of view, cutting wages is the way to go? I don't know how the UK media portrays the situation in Greece and i'm not sure the average European has realised what is really going on in countries like Greece, Spain, Portugal and Cyprus. Making statistics is fine, but having people getting unemployed and homeless and having Troika saying that they're really helping Greece is not.
    Your own governments past and present are to blame and nobody else. Certainly not those who bailed them out of their own sodding mess.


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    (Original post by Fullofsurprises)
    Sophistry. You aren't comparing like with like. If you got a 65% rise (difficult to accept, but let's just speculate for a minute that's true) and that was due to age increases, promotion, bonuses, or whatever, then that isn't real increase in pay rates.

    However, increasingly I have to say I don't really find many of your points credible and short of you posting your payslips, then and now, we will have to leave it there.
    Living standards have improved since the '50s yes or no?


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    (Original post by Midlander)
    Living standards have improved since the '50s yes or no?

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    :confused:

    Quady was talking about the last 5 years, not the last 50.
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    (Original post by Fullofsurprises)
    gains a clear win.

    Owen Jones writes brilliantly about it. This was a victory of hope against the lies of the post-cold war 'consensus' that only neoliberal capitalism can solve our problems and the lie that we have to destroy our public services, the incomes of more than half the population and the lifestyles we've been used to, because capitalism demands it.
    http://www.theguardian.com/commentis...-cynicism-hope

    Syriza's victory in Greece should be a role model for us here in the UK. We do not need to accept the Tory/neoliberal/New Labour line that there is no alternative to massive cuts in public services.
    It's really not. It's about the incompetent Greek government living beyond their means for decades by failing to collect tax and offering huge pensions by a continued cycle of borrowing and hiding debt.

    Then, when they get found out and are given money on the condition that they begin living within their means, they throw a hissy fit and elect a party who don't want to pay the debt. You can't just refuse to pay a debt, no-one would lend to them again.

    Syriza are being completely unreasonable here.
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    (Original post by Fullofsurprises)
    Sophistry. You aren't comparing like with like. If you got a 65% rise (difficult to accept, but let's just speculate for a minute that's true) and that was due to age increases, promotion, bonuses, or whatever, then that isn't real increase in pay rates.

    However, increasingly I have to say I don't really find many of your points credible and short of you posting your payslips, then and now, we will have to leave it there.
    How is it not an increase in pay?
    Someone starting in the job I had in 2008 last year would start on £970 less than I did. But that's a very different thing to arguing to say people's individuals haven't seen their pay keep up with inflation.
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    (Original post by Quady)
    How is it not an increase in pay?
    Someone starting in the job I had in 2008 last year would start on £970 less than I did. But that's a very different thing to arguing to say people's individuals haven't seen their pay keep up with inflation.
    I'm not sure exactly what you mean in your first sentence, do you mean that you started in 2008 and the starting pay for the exact same role is now £1000 more? Which part of the civil service do you work in? This sounds like one of those made up things that Tory libertarians accuse the public sector of.

    On average, real wages in the UK have fallen by 8% between 2008 and 2014. (TUC figures)

    In the US, adult male incomes have remained stagnant over a 40 year period in real terms, once you subtract the top 1% of earners. That figure is growth of only 1.2% for the UK and is getting lower.

    The anglo-saxon model is broken.
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    (Original post by tengentoppa)
    It's really not. It's about the incompetent Greek government living beyond their means for decades by failing to collect tax and offering huge pensions by a continued cycle of borrowing and hiding debt.

    Then, when they get found out and are given money on the condition that they begin living within their means, they throw a hissy fit and elect a party who don't want to pay the debt. You can't just refuse to pay a debt, no-one would lend to them again.

    Syriza are being completely unreasonable here.
    It's hardly a 'hissy fit'. The country has been devastated.

    Obviously the problem was over-borrowing, but as in the UK, it isn't the tax evaders and avoiders, the bankers, or the politicians who are suffering from the austerity - it is the poor and the middle class.

    Austerity suppresses demand and causes deflation, which is happening in the UK, across Europe and elsewhere. For sure the Greeks made a lot of very bad mistakes (or at least, corrupt civil servants, the rich and bankers did) but the payment is being made by the majority. The austerity programme is pushing us collectively back to the early 30s and in some ways things are already worse than they were then. The current depression has lasted longer and wages are not recovering as they did after some years back then.

    A more sensible way out would be to leave the Euro, default (most of the bankers to whom the money is owed are little better than gangsters anyway) and set a new economic system up. I doubt that Greece can handle all this alone, but at the moment, the 'Troika' is basically just about ensuring that Goldman $achs and JP Morgan retain the profits of their programme of Euro-manipulation.
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    Funny that the Keynesian argument about the suppression of demand always gets trotted out even though a lack of demand does not even anyway justify socialistic policy or increased government spending. Best way to increase demand would be to actually give the middle class their money back by cutting taxes.

    That's the long term goal in my opinion as it is very hard to say that the UK has a liberal, free-market system when the government takes such a significant portion of our income and government spending as a percentage of GDP is at 45% (without including the massive unfunded liabilities of public pensions).
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    (Original post by The_Mighty_Bush)
    Funny that the Keynesian argument about the suppression of demand always gets trotted out even though a lack of demand does not even anyway justify socialistic policy or increased government spending. Best way to increase demand would be to actually give the middle class their money back by cutting taxes.

    That's the long term goal in my opinion as it is very hard to say that the UK has a liberal, free-market system when the government takes such a significant portion of our income and government spending as a percentage of GDP is at 45% (without including the massive unfunded liabilities of public pensions).
    Opposing austerity is not the same as advocating 'socialistic policy', but if by that you mean a measure of rational government planning as opposed to a bizarre and madly idealistic fantasy that the 'market will sort everything out' then you are right. However, my experience with these sorts of arguments is that libertarians think that the opposite of anything not controlled by hedge fund algorithms and offshore tax-free oligarchs is 'socialism'.

    Giving tax breaks to middle class people has been proven over and over in the US not to raise demand. This is because they are much more likely to save additional and unexpected income, or else to spend it on cheap imports. Arguably part of the reason China surged from the 80s onwards is that the US handed tax breaks to those on comfortable incomes.

    Raising the incomes of the poorest is a foolproof method, since they will immediately spend most of the new money.
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    (Original post by Fullofsurprises)
    It's hardly a 'hissy fit'. The country has been devastated.

    Obviously the problem was over-borrowing, but as in the UK, it isn't the tax evaders and avoiders, the bankers, or the politicians who are suffering from the austerity - it is the poor and the middle class.

    Austerity suppresses demand and causes deflation, which is happening in the UK, across Europe and elsewhere. For sure the Greeks made a lot of very bad mistakes (or at least, corrupt civil servants, the rich and bankers did) but the payment is being made by the majority. The austerity programme is pushing us collectively back to the early 30s and in some ways things are already worse than they were then. The current depression has lasted longer and wages are not recovering as they did after some years back then.

    A more sensible way out would be to leave the Euro, default (most of the bankers to whom the money is owed are little better than gangsters anyway) and set a new economic system up. I doubt that Greece can handle all this alone, but at the moment, the 'Troika' is basically just about ensuring that Goldman $achs and JP Morgan retain the profits of their programme of Euro-manipulation.
    Isn't a good 60% of their bailout sourced from the Eurozone? Also wouldn't call the likes of the IMF as 'as good as gangsters'. Just like Iceland they want to rack up a bill and leave someone else with the tab.

    Out of interest, what would have happened if nobody had bailed out Greece at the time?


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    (Original post by Midlander)
    Isn't a good 60% of their bailout sourced from the Eurozone? Also wouldn't call the likes of the IMF as 'as good as gangsters'. Just like Iceland they want to rack up a bill and leave someone else with the tab.

    Out of interest, what would have happened if nobody had bailed out Greece at the time?

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    Actually Greece hasn't been 'bailed out' as such - some of their debt repayments have been delayed and more loans were taken out.

    The IMF were only applying patches to the tidal wave of cheap loan money pumped in previously by the banks at rock bottom rates and underwritten by the apparent confidence of bankers (maybe misplaced!) that the EU would never let a Eurozone country go down.

    Without the recent interventions, I strongly suspect the Grexit would have already taken place. As it is, they simply kicked the problem down the road and now we've reached the place where it landed.
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    (Original post by Fullofsurprises)

    Raising the incomes of the poorest is a foolproof method, since they will immediately spend most of the new money.
    Or the marginal propensity to consume if you want to make yourself sound smart :fyi:



    Universal basic income is the most cost effective and efficient way of doing this. But it will never happen on a large scale
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    (Original post by Fullofsurprises)
    Opposing austerity is not the same as advocating 'socialistic policy', but if by that you mean a measure of rational government planning as opposed to a bizarre and madly idealistic fantasy that the 'market will sort everything out' then you are right. However, my experience with these sorts of arguments is that libertarians think that the opposite of anything not controlled by hedge fund algorithms and offshore tax-free oligarchs is 'socialism'.
    You clearly don't know anything about economics if you think the economy is planned by hedge funds and not only that but that government can "rationally" plan it better. Just complete nonsense really.

    (Original post by Fullofsurprises)
    Giving tax breaks to middle class people has been proven over and over in the US not to raise demand. This is because they are much more likely to save additional and unexpected income, or else to spend it on cheap imports. Arguably part of the reason China surged from the 80s onwards is that the US handed tax breaks to those on comfortable incomes.
    Any evidence that this has been "proven over and over"? In any case people saving right now (or what they would actually be doing, which is getting rid of debt) would not be a terrible idea right now since private household debt is extremely high at the moment.

    (Original post by Fullofsurprises)
    Raising the incomes of the poorest is a foolproof method, since they will immediately spend most of the new money.
    What would they spend it on though? Much of the money would go to businesses that cater to more basic desires (supermarkets) rather than service side industries. In any case, my answer to raising the income of the poor would still be to cut their taxes. The government has actually got many poor out of taxation but has also done things that have been counter-productive to that goal such as raising VAT. This can be done by cutting VAT and NI in the future.

    In the short term, we should be trying our hardest to cut the deficit and the debt.
    In the long term, we need to cut taxes (income tax on middle earners, VAT, NI) and shift employment from the public sector to the private sector.
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    (Original post by Midlander)
    Isn't a good 60% of their bailout sourced from the Eurozone? Also wouldn't call the likes of the IMF as 'as good as gangsters'. Just like Iceland they want to rack up a bill and leave someone else with the tab.

    Out of interest, what would have happened if nobody had bailed out Greece at the time?

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    As a default would not be permitted to occur inside the Euro, they'd have been kicked out immediately and the Euro-zone banks would have been given cash to absorb the losses as Greece repeatedly defaulted. Their new currency would collapse in value, inflation would go through the roof but after a few years they'd be no worse than Argentina.

    Greece is a pin-prick. It's a default of a country the size of Italy or more that if allowed to happen repeatedly would cause the global economy to go Blitzgreek simply because of how much debt everybody is holding as it caused a domino effect. A single default from the likes of the US would be catastrophic.
 
 
 
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