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Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Back to the drachma

This may be one of the few times I will ever actively endorse the radical wing of a hard left party, but Syriza's radicals are absolutely doing the right thing with regards to the EU and the Euro:
The radical wing of Greece's Syriza party is to table plans over coming days for an Icelandic-style default and a nationalisation of the Greek banking system, deeming it pointless to continue talks with Europe's creditor powers. Syriza sources say measures being drafted include capital controls and the establishment of a sovereign central bank able to stand behind a new financial system. While some form of dual currency might be possible in theory, such a structure would be incompatible with euro membership and would imply a rapid return to the drachma.

The confidential plans were circulating over the weekend and have the backing of 30 MPs from the Aristeri Platforma or 'Left Platform', as well as other hard-line groupings in Syriza's spectrum. It is understood that the nationalist ANEL party in the ruling coalition is also willing to force a rupture with creditors, if need be.

"This goes well beyond the Left Platform. We are talking serious numbers," said one Syriza MP involved in the draft. We are all horrified by the idea of surrender, and we will not allow ourselves to be throttled to death by European monetary union," he told the Telegraph.

Syriza's Left Platform has studied the Icelandic model, extolled as a success story by the International Monetary Fund itself.

"The Greek banks must be nationalised immediately, along with the creation of a bad bank. There may have to be some restrictions on cash withdrawals," said one Syriza MP.  "The banks will go ape-shit of course. We are aware that there will be a lot of lawsuits but at the end of the day we are a sovereign power," he said.

Syriza has a strong ideological motive to strike at the financial elites. They view the banks as the nerve centre of an entrenched oligarchy that has run the country for more than half a century as a family business. Forcing these institutions into bankruptcy provides cover for a socio-political purge, best understood as a revolution.
Without national sovereignty, absolutely no other political position or policy matters. Golden Dawn, ANEL, and the other Greek parties should support the Syriza radicals in this. As should nationalists in Spain and Italy. I would love to see Italy back on the lira. Heck, I still have some.

The banks remind me a little of the SJWs in science fiction.

The creditors argue that 'Grexit' would be suicidal for Greece. They have been negotiating on the assumption that Syriza must be bluffing, and will ultimately capitulate. Little thought has gone into possibility that key figures in Athens may be thinking along entirely different lines. 

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69 Comments:

Blogger Rantor June 17, 2015 4:59 AM  

All in favor of Grexit and a Greek National Bank. Biggest concern is that the socialists will use that bank to print notes like never before and throw nation into an even worse economic crisis. I see little hope for them to maintian their social state and have a successful national currency. They will find that controlling the banking sector is insufficient and go on a corporate nationalization spree, thus furthering economic harm in a nation riddled by corruption.

Of course a serious accounting effort would have shown that Greece did not qualify to enter the EMU.

Blogger VD June 17, 2015 5:17 AM  

Biggest concern is that the socialists will use that bank to print notes like never before and throw nation into an even worse economic crisis.

Of course they will. But a nation can expect to recover from an economic crisis. It cannot expect to recover from a loss of national sovereignty, it can only expect to disappear from history like many a conquered nation in the past.

Anonymous WhiteKnightLeo #0368 June 17, 2015 5:28 AM  

"Biggest concern is that the socialists will use that bank to print notes like never before and throw nation into an even worse economic crisis.

Of course they will. But a nation can expect to recover from an economic crisis. It cannot expect to recover from a loss of national sovereignty, it can only expect to disappear from history like many a conquered nation in the past."

True enough.

I can support the desire of Greeks to be masters of their own economic fate. I don't support the nationalization of banks, but that's because I don't support *nationalization*, period; I don't think governments have any business trying to run businesses.

Blogger Student in Blue June 17, 2015 6:04 AM  

Well, from one point of view it'll work. Government-run businesses never seem to turn a profit and are awful, so with government-run banks would we ever have to worry about the financial sector growing too big and effectively strangling the rest of the economy?

Anonymous WhiteKnightLeo #0368 June 17, 2015 6:12 AM  

@Student in Blue

That happens *because* of government involvement. Without the federal government guaranteeing the sub-prime mortgages, the 2008 crisis wouldn't have happened.

Blogger Rantor June 17, 2015 6:17 AM  

A government bank to provide currency backed by hard resources is no problem in my mind. The problem comes when they inflate the currency and destroy wealth.

Blogger Student in Blue June 17, 2015 6:33 AM  

@WhiteKnightLeo

It's more than just guaranteeing of sub-prime mortgages. Without that, there would've still been a downward spiral, just not in 2008.

Banks (and businesses of all sorts) will continue to do illegal things as long as it remains profitable. Crime needs to not pay.

Blogger James Higham June 17, 2015 6:56 AM  

It's started.

Anonymous Trimegistus June 17, 2015 6:59 AM  

Greece is going to go Full Zimbabwe. That's what always happens when you give socialists a central bank to play with.

They'll nationalize the banks, repudiate or renegotiate debts, and print money to pay for all the free shit they promised the voters. The new Drachma will accumulate zeros until it's worth more as toilet paper than as money. Greeks will use Euros, or possibly US Dollars, for most transactions.

Far from restoring sovereignty over their money, this will remove even the fig leaf of Greek financial sovereignty, and shut down any remaining Greek-owned financial industry.

Anonymous zen0 June 17, 2015 7:02 AM  

5. WhiteKnightLeo #0368

I don't support *nationalization*, period; I don't think governments have any business trying to run businesses.

Are these banks in fact businesses, or are they branch offices of the Global Government?

Blogger Peter June 17, 2015 7:12 AM  

Being from Greece, i doubt that Syriza will have the "balls" to do that. But if they are willing to do so, kudos to them and i agree with Vox that the other parties should support them.

Anonymous WhiteKnightLeo #0368 June 17, 2015 7:27 AM  

@Student in Blue

The downward spiral was caused by the fact that the federal government had been guaranteeing those mortgages for more than 10 years. They were so good an investment that they got traded all over the place; it was called "mortgage-backed securities". The CEO of BB&T bank saw it for what it was and refused to participate, but most banks saw it as guaranteed money.

Banks can and do fail on their own, just all businesses. But what you are talking about is 'too big to fail'. And 'too big to fail' only happens in the first place because of the involvement of the government. So long as businesses believe that the government will bail them out if things go badly for them, they will take more risks than they would otherwise.



@zen0

If the banks they are planning to nationalize are in fact connected to such bodies as the World Bank or what have you, then nationalizing them is probably better than leaving them as is: they'll be political institutions in either case, but at least they would be motivated by *Greek* politics.

But national banks are themselves very dangerous things. Our own Federal Reserve has been little more than a colony of leeches funding profligate spending by politicians who want to buy votes without having to sell tax hikes to pay for them.

Blogger Nate June 17, 2015 7:30 AM  

Screaming "If you leave you will die!!" Its more like "Don't leave! we're not done killing you yet!"

Blogger Rantor June 17, 2015 7:33 AM  

National Banks vary. The Federal Reserve is a congressionally chartered profit-making institution... not how I want my money printed. The move to electronic currency is designed to ensure that banks can charge transaction fees on everything, thus enriching themselves. Total bullshit corporate tax. Small businesses in Scandinavia have been fighting this. Transaction charges can destroy profit on a small purchase. When I lived in Norway every transaction, deposit, transfer, withdrawal, included a charge.

Anonymous ZhukovG June 17, 2015 7:59 AM  

It would be interesting to know what kind of support the Russians are offering behind the scenes.

Anonymous WhiteKnightLeo #0368 June 17, 2015 8:01 AM  

@Rantor

Maybe. But I've yet to hear of a national bank that hasn't performed the function of a piggy bank for profligate government vote-buying.

Blogger njartist June 17, 2015 8:05 AM  

"Biggest concern is that the socialists will use that bank to print notes..."

In the United States, they would be known as Greenbacks; one president hated by the local southrons is considered by some to have been assassinated for that very reason. Greenbacks were Lincoln's way to get around the debt-slavers.

Anonymous Stilicho June 17, 2015 8:09 AM  

But if they are willing to do so, kudos to them and i agree with Vox that the other parties should support them

Vox is right, it is the only viable course left to them...unless the Germans want to work harder to support the millions of Greeks depending on them...

The leftists will, of course, use this as an opportunity to grab more power and use that power to pillage the country and destroy their political opponents for a generation while blaming them for the additional problems the leftists create. But a generation from now, there will still be a Greece and they'll have the opportunity to fix the problems caused by the left. The other option is to become a non-state protectorate of Brussels which will use that opportunity to pillage the country and destroy their political opponents while blaming them for the additional problems Brussels creates....

Blogger Daniel June 17, 2015 8:18 AM  

On the other hand, despite the Left trying to push it's own agenda, they may merely be creating the rules environment which will be taken advantage of by an active Right. It isn't unheard of...

Anonymous Cash June 17, 2015 8:27 AM  

Crap. The Russians are going to have all the best vacation spots.

Anonymous RedJack #22 June 17, 2015 8:32 AM  

The German's and the French got what they have wanted for at least 200 years, a United Europe. Now they have to decide if they really want it.

The German's are probably regretting the EU already.

Blogger Kryten 2X4B 523P June 17, 2015 8:32 AM  

"On the other hand, despite the Left trying to push it's own agenda, they may merely be creating the rules environment which will be taken advantage of by an active Right. It isn't unheard of..."

Yeah, but the amount of screaming from them when you play by the rules they set is incredible - because there will always be "unwritten rules" or "gentlemen's agreements" or "unspoken community standards" that they can make up on the fly to justify it..

Anonymous Trimegistus June 17, 2015 8:54 AM  

Hey, where'd my comment go?

To repeat: if the Greek lefty government leaves the Euro, it's a sure bet they're going to fire up the printing press and go Full Zimbabwe. The new Drachma will drop down to toilet-paper/rolling paper value, and Greeks will do all their business in grimy bundles of Euros or USD. In short, by trying to reassert sovereignty over its money, Greece will lose it completely.

Blogger Peter June 17, 2015 8:59 AM  

@Stilicho

To be fair even the (past) mainstream socialist party, PASOK, as well as their oppoents, New Democracy, have been chastised as right-winger/capitalists in disguise.

Heck, even SYRIZA with its leftist, as far as corporations/banks are concerned, policies isn't considered that left.

That's what you get with a country that has a considerable big part of the population idealizing communism. Which is to expected considering the civil war and the fact that the liberation front, which was mostly leftist(in the Soviet Russian form of the left), was outlawed and left to rot by the state after the Nazis were out of the country. My grandpa was part of that front and he was prosecuted as well during the military regime.

All in all, a considerable part of greeks among the youth are anti-capitalists/anti-right/left-wing sympathizers(at least in words). Mostly because this country has been on the receiving end of various right wing forces. It's kind of similar in the way that countries that were part of the Soviet block are having a huge anti-communist/anti-leftist sentiment.

While i would consider myself leaning left in the past, i have settled for libertarian instead. Which probably makes me not a leftist i guess(is center left even viable?).

Now on the topic of Golden Dawn and ANEL. ANEL are showing some minor promise but won't catch on mostly because of the reasons i stated above and the fact that from time to time they come off as crazies. Now, as far as Golden Dawn is concerned, it is one of the few parties that you can say accurately that they are Neo-Nazis(who also shifted from paganism to Christianity in order to gain more traction) , and that by default makes them national traitors.

Anonymous Stilicho June 17, 2015 9:08 AM  

Mostly because this country has been on the receiving end of various right wing forces.

Really? By what metric? I have always considered Greece and its governments to be solidly statist, anti-capitalist/crony capitalist, leftist oligarchies of one sort or another regardless of official labels.

Anonymous Stilicho June 17, 2015 9:16 AM  

In short, Greek governments (and most European govts post WWII) are more a mattter of who is imposing socialism on whom than any true left/right divide.

Have you had an actual Pinochet?

Anonymous Athor Pel June 17, 2015 9:27 AM  

"22. Peter June 17, 2015 8:59 AM
...
Now, as far as Golden Dawn is concerned, it is one of the few parties that you can say accurately that they are Neo-Nazis(who also shifted from paganism to Christianity in order to gain more traction) , and that by default makes them national traitors."



Let me get this straight, the fact that Golden Dawn is a national socialist party makes them a national traitor. Is that how Greeks see things?

Because I'm not able to make the same connections.

Does national socialist = German socialist?

Or does the average Greek see the switch from paganism to Christianity as the cheap political ploy that it is.

Anonymous Discard June 17, 2015 9:27 AM  

What the Greeks do with their drachmas is a detail. Of course they will fuck up, and badly. The destruction of a political and economic system will always be a time of chaos. Isn't that why so many people have guns and lots of ammo?
I always thought that the plan was to survive the fall and put things right afterwards. Economic collapse is the friend of the honest thinking man, isn't it?

Blogger Peter P. June 17, 2015 9:30 AM  

@Stilicho



For all their sweet talk, there has been quite the crony capitalistic feast here all over the years. PASOK could call itself left-wing or socialist all day but it was cronyism incarnate. Mostly a bunch of people eating money that was supposed to go to various overpriced(on purpose) projects. And whenever they(believe me they did try) tried to be less statist there was like this huge leftist uproar all over the place always. If anything the only reason this country may seem leftist, it is because its inhabitants were always resistant to change(at least when their party wasn't in charge).

The most right wing force i can think of that plagued this land, was the military regime that lasted like 7 years. Not long by any means but it is engraved into the memory of most people. It was a time of terror. And to be frank, this country has been giving commies the middle finger for quite a while. Not that i am a commie, despite my grandpa being one, but i got to hand it to them that they did a good job cultivating their public image over the years(being prosecuted for a long time does that). So in most circles, at least here, noone considers any goverment so far(besides Syriza) to be leftist. And even they, are considered moderate.

To sum it up, commies have good PR here. So here, anything that isn't near the RED isn't considered leftist enough.

PS1. Whenever there was a push towards lifting some state controls it was the left(SYRIZA, KKE etc etc) that rallied under various banners together against it.

PS2. To give you some prespective, no leftist here that wants to save face here considers the goverment of america under Obama leftist by any means. It's like Sweden's version of the right vs left. You are either a radical or not a leftist.

Blogger Peter P. June 17, 2015 9:34 AM  

This comment has been removed by the author.

Blogger Peter P. June 17, 2015 9:35 AM  

This comment has been removed by the author.

Blogger Peter P. June 17, 2015 9:36 AM  

@Athol Pel

They are literal Nazis(like Hitler loyalists). Like, if those were the 1940s they would be on Hitler's side and probably the same people going around saying absurd things like " The Third Reich are our friends" and betraying us. There's a subtle difference between being a national socialist and being a guy that adores Hitler and the Third Reich(at least when you are not German).

And yes, we see the shift as the cheap political ploy that it is.

PS. freaking typos made me post and delete like 3 times.

Anonymous CunningDove June 17, 2015 9:46 AM  

The creditors argue that 'Grexit' would be suicidal for Greece. They have been negotiating on the assumption that Syriza must be bluffing, and will ultimately capitulate. Little thought has gone into possibility that key figures in Athens may be thinking along entirely different lines.

It also brings to mind the fact that Truman asked MacArthur what he would do if China joined the fight & flanked his maneuver into Korea. MacArthur dismissed the idea that China would get involved. And now we have 2 Koreas.....

Anonymous Sheila June 17, 2015 9:51 AM  

I wholeheartedly support national sovereignty and Greece pulling out of the Euro - out of the EU in general. However, I doubt the Greek work force will work quite the way the Icelanders did in pulling off their economic recovery. While I'm far from expert, my experiences in Greece indicated lots of corruption, long siestas, short working hours, and plenty of apparently able-bodied men spending their days drinking and smoking in the outdoor cafes.

Blogger darkdoc June 17, 2015 10:06 AM  

Right wing, left wing.

Both wings are attached to the same bird and that bird is government, and who controls the power and more important, the purse.

So give the wing crap a rest, both wings are willing to be oppresive and coercive when needed. Talking about wings means you have been distracted just as they desire, like a magician distracting you so you never see the real trick.

Is there a side that won't tax you, won't betray you, won't use your money to buy their votes, won't use your children to fight their wars, won't bind your children in debt for the future to pay the things they want today?

Grow up, children, grow up.

Blogger Peter P. June 17, 2015 10:12 AM  

To be frank, I am not taking sides here. Just trying to present the overall sentiment over here at the best of my abilities.

Blogger Anthony June 17, 2015 10:14 AM  

Any sort of default will cause enormous economic pain, which will probably get Syriza voted out of power after they do it. The real question is whether ND can actually enact decent-enough economic policies afterwards to enable a recovery without selling the country to the Germans.

OpenID simplytimothy June 17, 2015 10:20 AM  

Transaction charges can destroy profit on a small purchase. When I lived in Norway every transaction, deposit, transfer, withdrawal, included a charge.

If these are in a database, as they probably are, then a SELECT statement for those businesses with the most transfers is easy. Since you have access to the database, you have access to politicians. You then 'lobby' so that the law is changed in such a way that the productive business is destroyed by the changes in the law but, miracle of miracles, 'somebody' has a business that complies with the new law or is exempt from it and now 'somebody' owns that income stream.

Blogger Tom Kratman June 17, 2015 10:20 AM  

Before we crap completely over Greek corruption, incompetence, and irresponsibility we probably ought remember that while they may be corrupt, the EU also corrupted them, and while they may be irresponsible, they were bribed and encouraged into that irresponsibility.

I'm looking forward to their default, even as I look forward to every lamp post in Europe having it's own EUnuch dangling from it.

Everybody, sing along: (I'm sure you know the tune)

Fuck the European Union!
Fuck the Hague and ICC!
Fuck their rules and regulations;
Fuck the whole bureaucracy!

Asshats, Bastards, Cowards, Dimwits,
Excrement-Feeding, Gallows-bait.
Hang the swine Higher than Haman,
Ignorant Jackasses, Knaves.

Watch them purge the bent banana.
See your taxes rise and rise.
See your nations fall to ruin.
Watch as every freedom dies.

Lick-ass Morons, Nincompoops, Oh,
Pity the Quagmire these Reds made.
Sycophants and Thieves, the whole crew,
Underworked and oVerpaid.

Friday Mornings EUnuchs sign in
To ensure their holidays
Are paid for by lesser beings.
Others call those people, "slaves."

To the lampposts, Europeans.
Tie the knots and toss the ropes.
Fit the nooses, haul the free ends
Stand back; let the bastards choke.

Blogger darkdoc June 17, 2015 10:27 AM  

Tom - SING IT LOUD, SING IT STRONG !!

Blogger Shimshon June 17, 2015 10:34 AM  

I'm all teary-eyed at the raw emotional depth of the song.

Blogger Tom Kratman June 17, 2015 10:39 AM  

It's from the heart, yes.

Anonymous BGS June 17, 2015 10:54 AM  

Without the federal government guaranteeing the sub-prime mortgages, the 2008 crisis wouldn't have happened.

Forcing banks to give mortgages to non Asian minorities with bad credit was why the 2008 crisis happened. Just like everyone knew Greece didn't belong in the EU, everyone knew non Asian minority forced mortgages are toxic. Without the crisis & all the foreclosed homes after it leftists wouldn't have been able to spread die verse city into as many neighborhoods. People are also able to make much more wealth from bad things happening than good especially when they cause the bad things.

Blogger Quizzer W June 17, 2015 11:00 AM  

A couple of Russian military bases will solve whatever economic woes plague the Greek people. I have no idea how that solution will be viewed by the locals.

Anonymous Stilicho June 17, 2015 11:07 AM  

Thanks, Peter.

PASOK could call itself left-wing or socialist all day but it was cronyism incarnate

That is a common feature of socialism. Very nearly required, in practice if not in theory.

Blogger The Remnant June 17, 2015 11:12 AM  

Absolutely. Between a global libertarian government versus multiple competing governments of differing ideological hues, I would choose the latter every day of the week and twice on Sunday. This is because any government that can abuse power will, so it's best to keep governments small and separate (like anti-trust, which should be applied to governments rather than to businesses anyway).

There can be no true freedom without independence, national sovereignty, and international competition. The U.S. was designed to have state sovereignty and interstate competition, but that was destroyed a century and a half ago. However wrongheaded Greece may be internally, it's far better for Greece to go its own way and help shatter the supra-national monstrosity in Brussels.

Anonymous Trimegistus June 17, 2015 11:20 AM  

Interestingly, having no functional currency of its own might actually be good for Greece. A completely worthless drachma means no individual debt at all, and a completely "gray market" cash economy means prices and wages can seek their natural level. Greeks working abroad will funnel money back home. Taxation will be meaningless so the government will be forced into genuine austerity. The Greek government will have to make money by actually providing services to its people -- or individuals in government will do the same by pure corruption. It could hardly be worse than what they've got right now.

Anonymous Jack Amok June 17, 2015 11:33 AM  

"The banks will go ape-shit of course.

Did an elected official actually use the term "ape-shit"? Well, maybe these Syriza folks do have what it takes to go through with this "crazy talk" about upsetting the bankster apple cart (or is it a fig cart in Greece?). I agree they will almost certainly screw it up, being leftists, and also being Greeks, not to mention having to deal with an economy full of Greeks who have spent a couple of generations scamming the government. But at least a new generation of Greeks will have a chance to fix it afterwards, while if they go forward with the EU they'll be relegated to being waiters for German tourists and absentee landlords. Kratman's right that the EU has contributed significantly to the corruption, and disentangling themselves from that mostrosity is a necessary step towards ending the corruption.

Anonymous Jack Amok June 17, 2015 11:34 AM  

For all their sweet talk, there has been quite the crony capitalistic feast here all over the years. PASOK could call itself left-wing or socialist all day but it was cronyism incarnate.

It must be the leftist PR that makes anyone see a contradiction between "left-wing" and "crony capitalism." The socialists do their damnedest to portray politics as a choice between two slightly different facades over the same foundation that seeks to socialize every aspect of life. Nazis or Commies? Both are socialists, both want to control other people's lives. Like DarkDoc said, two wings attached the same bird (I like that one, Doc).

I think one of the biggest challenges we face in recovering civilization is articulating what the actual alternative to "Left-wing" really is. Sadly, the farther the leftists push things, the more likely a military dictatorship is the alternative.

Blogger Jourdan June 17, 2015 11:43 AM  

Not only did he say "ape-shit", the current foreign minister used to work for Valve Software. It pleases me to no end that Greece's guy in these negotiations knows who Gordon Freeman is and what a Portal Gun is.

Anonymous Jack Amok June 17, 2015 11:51 AM  

Not only did he say "ape-shit", the current foreign minister used to work for Valve Software. It pleases me to no end that Greece's guy in these negotiations knows who Gordon Freeman is and what a Portal Gun is.

Maybe they can get a Finance Minister who used to work for Blizzard who would know how people like to game the economy.

Blogger Tommy Hass June 17, 2015 12:10 PM  

Is any country in the EU non sovereign? I ask this because Germans are said to be the leaders of the EU, so, in theory, it could be said that for them, it's not being conquered, it's conquering others.

Anonymous Quartermaster June 17, 2015 12:12 PM  

"It also brings to mind the fact that Truman asked MacArthur what he would do if China joined the fight & flanked his maneuver into Korea. MacArthur dismissed the idea that China would get involved. And now we have 2 Koreas....."

After WW2 there were 2 Koreas because of the soviet Union's involvement in the war against Japan at the end. Kim simply tried to reunite Korea forcibly under himself and Stalin supported him.

At MacArthur's level, the intel said no Chinese involvement. The intel failure over the Chinese entry was in DC, not in the Pacific theater. He and his staff were as surprised as anyone that Mao entered the war.

When I lived in Germany in the late 60s, the Germans were all for the European experiment. The people on the street couldn't have cared less, but the people in Bonn were a different kettle of fish. Berlin is the same way. I'd bet a dollar to a donut that the majority of Fritzes would like to have the DM back.

Anonymous ticticboom June 17, 2015 12:34 PM  

So who's going to invade first, Germany or Turkey?

Blogger Tom Kratman June 17, 2015 12:36 PM  

QM:

MacArthur was always prone to overestimating himself and underestimating his enemy. Note his failure to collect supplies before the Japanese landed in the Philippines, based on his faith he could stop them on the beaches. That was a forerunner of his underestimation of the PLA and China.

Note what a Brit Liaison wrote of him: "He is shrewd, selfish, proud, remote, highly strung and vastly vain. He has imagination, self-confidence, physical courage and charm, but no humor about himself, no regard for truth, and is unaware of these defects. He mistakes his emotions and ambitions for principles. With moral depth he would be a great man; as it is he is a near miss which may be worse than mile.... "

Moreover, his theology was unsound; he seems to have been certain there was a fourth person in the Trinity. Now if only the Japanese had agreed with him that he was a god, but they were stuck on the Emperor as a divinity.

Blogger Tommy Hass June 17, 2015 12:48 PM  

"So who's going to invade first, Germany or Turkey?"

False dilemma.

Blogger Tommy Hass June 17, 2015 12:54 PM  

I wonder why Anglos and the French intervened so much when a country invaded another country that wasn't them.

Would the Brits really suffer from a realpolitik perspective if Germany invaded Poland unopposed? Is Churchill telling me that THAT was necessary to protect Britain?

Or Korea. Would America really be in trouble if Korea turns all communist?

Blogger ScuzzaMan June 17, 2015 1:39 PM  

The borrower is servant to the lender.

The Greek government is attempting the impossible: to borrow without owing anything to the lender in return.

What usually happens when people attempt the impossible is it ends badly.

Of course, the Greek government's creditors have also been attempting the impossible: to be re-paid by a borrower incapable of repaying what they lent.

All ends in tears, these arrangements usually do.

Blogger Mark Citadel June 17, 2015 4:01 PM  

This is brilliant. A default utterly discredits Syriza (not because Greeks will be unhappy about leaving the EU on principle, but because they are going to financially implode and benefits will become virtually non-existent), even if Russia coughs up some money.

And if Syriza is discredited, there is only one political party which will gain with all other options now exhausted.

Golden Dawn.

I chant with all: GREXIT! GREXIT! GREXIT!

OpenID thenoisyrogue June 17, 2015 4:20 PM  

Iceland is the success story "forgotten" by the mainstream press since they turned things around against the desire of the EU and other powers at be. I wish Greece the same success.

Anonymous Sithicus June 17, 2015 5:25 PM  

It's quite simple. France and Britain offered their help and support to prevent Poland accepting German offer of anti-Soviet alliance.

The Germans offered an alliance against Soviets in 1939. In order to prevent this from happening the Brits and French convinced Polish goverment that they were better options. In hindsight we should have probably acceptet the German offer.

We knew that we were screwed - it's been only 20 years since we regained our independance after beeing partitioned for 123 years and we were still rebuilding our country, our industries and our army.
War with the Russians in 1919-1921 did not helped much.

In 1939 Britain and France signed a series of military agreements with Poland that contained very specific promises. The leaders of Poland understood very clearly that they had no chance against Germany alone.

The French, in fact, promised the Poles in mid-May 1939 that in the event of German aggression against Poland, France would launch an offensive against the Germans "no later than fifteen days after mobilization". This promise was sealed in a solemn treaty signed between Poland and France.

Unfortunately, when Germany attacked, Poland was almost totally and completely betrayed by its democratic "friends". While Britain and France did declare war, French troops made a brief advance toward the Siegfried Line on Germany's western frontier and immediately stopped upon meeting German resistance.

This is very significant since Hitler had concentrated almost all German military forces in the east, and France had one of the strongest armies in the world. Had France attacked Germany in a serious way as promised, the results could have been very serious, if not disastrous for the Germans.

Polish leaders were not aware of the fact that England and France were not ready for war. They needed time to catch up with the Third Reich, and were determined to gain the time at any price

To accept London's guarantees was one of the most tragic dates in the history of Poland. It was a mental aberration and madness". On the same day when Britain pledged her support of Poland, Lord Halifax stated: "We do not think this guarantee will be binding". Other British diplomat, Alexander Cadogan wrote in his diary: "Naturally, our guarantee does not give any help to Poland. It can be said that it was cruel to Poland, even cynical.

If a different circumstances polish planes would fly along the Luftwaffe instead against it during the Battle of Britain.

Anonymous zen0 June 17, 2015 11:29 PM  

60. thenoisyrogue June 17, 2015 4:20 PM

Iceland is the success story "forgotten" by the mainstream press since they turned things around against the desire of the EU and other powers at be. I wish Greece the same success.


As do I. If they cannot show success like Iceland, the rest of the southern group will have a hard time getting their population to follow the same path.

How else will bankster power be curtailed?

Anonymous The Kulak June 18, 2015 1:19 AM  

Dear Polish friend Sithicus, yes the Anglo-French...and some Americans, at least the Rockefellers who were building up Hitler's war machine via Standard Oil of New Jersey, were eager to turn the Germans...eastward. Against Russia. Stalin may have been a damnable tyrant, but he was not wrong to suspect treachery when the offer of a true anti-Nazi pact was refused, in part because Poland wouldn't permit Soviet troops even in the event of war (not that this particular sticking point would've mattered all that much). The Nazis also tried to convince your country's leaders to go along with an attack on the Soviets as late as 1937, before plans changed. It's nice to see the less convenient bits of Polish history that might not entirely match the 'Christ between two thieves' narrative come out. Including taking that little piece of Czechoslovakia at Munich. OTOH, I sympathize with the Polish football ultras who chant that 'Lvov is Poland' (well it was until July 1941 when the progroms began against Jews and Ukrainians only became a majority there by 43 when Poles left) and 'Bandera is a d---' and remind the Right Sector Nazis that they will NEVER be brothers, no matter how much BS there is in Belsat about Polish-Ukrainian brotherhood and just a single Polish volunteer fighting for Ukraine as opposed to probably the real number of at least high single digit KIA your country has already sustained in Donbass (and your Su-25 pilots who were 'vacationing' last summer were damn lucky to survive and not get shot down too). That Robert P too many consonants guy who represents NATO in Moscow is a real unflappable BSer.

Someday, when it is no longer career suicide, a Polish journalist will report...or Radek Sikorski whom I've met will get drunk enough to admit to a young pretty thing with a tape recorder (not easy being married to that old neocon battle axe Applebaum)...that a few Polish 'regulars' did their own 'vacationing' in Donbass while Warsaw, NATO and Washington were all condemning Russia for the same.

Anyway, cheers fellow Slav Magdalena Ogorok has my vote any day:

http://www.liveleak.com/view?i=87c_1421657085

Anonymous The Kulak June 18, 2015 1:21 AM  

http://fortruss.blogspot.com/2015/04/general-skrzypczak-i-retract-everything.html
Former top Polish commander in Iraq: 'I retract everything I said about the need to arm Ukraine, they just passed a law glorifying the people who murdered my uncle in 1943-44' Volyn

http://fortruss.blogspot.com/2015/06/polish-soccer-fans-seize-upa-flag.html
Polish soccer ultras 'f--- the UPA and Bandera'

https://www.facebook.com/TruthfromUkraine/posts/727925673943602
Anti-Bandera rap

Anonymous The Kulak June 18, 2015 2:19 AM  

Someone said: "A couple of Russian military bases will solve whatever economic woes plague the Greek people. I have no idea how that solution will be viewed by the locals."

You don't have to entirely imagine. The Brits with their bases on Cyprus have already had to get used to large numbers of 'biznismen', no doubt a few of which are actually non official cover SVR/GRU collecting their signals and spying for example, on whether or not the UK was seriously gearing up to bomb Assad in the run up to the failed parliamentary vote in August 2013. The Russian Black Sea Fleet has been making quasi port calls on Cyprus and the Cypriots had to squelch rumors they were about to give the Russians a nice deal on a lease at the island. Russian ships and perhaps soon Chinese with all the money Beijing is putting into the Suez Canal industrial zone in Egypt are gonna be a lot more common sight in Hellas and the Piraeus soon. You can imagine the rage of the guys who still remember the Fulda Gap days of the 70s and 80s like Breedlove, much less the Max Boot and McInsane neocon nutjobs.

No two Russian bases won't solve Greece's problems, and the Greeks being wily will denounce claims they're the BRICS Banks 1st and newest colony (the way Cyprus was becoming a Russian colony before the EU's 'one and only 'bail in' experiment just happened to hit all that 'dirty' Russian money on the island). The leases will only be for 'maintenence' not permanent bases, but everybody will know the score. And the Greeks will give the EU the bird via NATO on their way out of the club, perhaps with a symbolic vote of some sort to censure Gen. Wesley Clark as a war criminal and demand that NATO pay reparations to the families of the Serbs murdered on Clark's orders at B92.

http://www.bbc.com/news/magazine-32358662

The Balts and other assorted eastern European Eurocrats will show their true colors with paroxysms of anti-Greek rage on behalf of their new bosses, the way their parents and grandparents who were loyal members of the Party denounced those uppity Czechs in 1968.

The times they are a changin' Eurocrats and NATOists. Get used to the GRU/SVR guys waving at you from one table over in Athens/Limassol.

Blogger Hermit June 18, 2015 5:19 AM  

It's very hard for Italy to go back to the Lira because of our political situation.
We do not have a radical alternative left party like Syriza but only politically correct faggot-loving degenerate leftists.
We do not have radical nationalist party as well, the only alternative movement anti-Euro on the right is the Lega Nord but it's a regionalist party with few votes in the south, also they're bound to be allied again to a dying Berlusconi or it's impossible for them to win.
The other anti-Euro alternative is the Movimento 5 stelle but it's a weird movement full of everything: crazed leftists, weird fascists, and normal random idiots. It's not even a party with a defined ideology: it's just a movement of random angry people ruled by a shady guru.

Anonymous Sithicus June 18, 2015 1:37 PM  

I cannot comment on the presence of polish regulars or mercenaries during the latest kerfuffle in Donbass as it was of no interest to me. It's quite possible especially if the pay is good. I still know few people that are in the business as we've served together in Yugo during the 90's so I'll ask. It was glorious but getting bombed by NATO planes sucked.
I forsee another serious military conflict in the Europe in the next decade or two - related to the increase of muslim & african imigrants. It'll end either in massive deportations or ethnical cleansing. I have to admit that I look forward to it.

Blogger Thucydides June 19, 2015 12:13 PM  

Onr reason everyone fears the "Grexit" is the insane intertwining of accounts and liabilities that has developed over several decades of the EUZone being in operation. How much Greek debt is being held by various banks, investment firms and even other governments as collateral? Perhaps worse is how much is being unknowingly held as "securitized" debt instruments. This is like the 2008 meltdown of the mortgage market on steroids.

While the formal exit of Greece from the EU will have some pretty huge effects (in particular second and third order effects as the various banks and financial institutions discover they are holding worthless paper), there could be surprises in store as even the threat of Grexit starts a process of unwinding in unexpected places.

I am pretty sure the German people will be up in arms when they discover that they are on the hook for the massive losses this will entail (taxpayer funded bailouts and government mandated "bail ins"), and this will only increase as the rest of the PIIGS go down in a domino effect. Russia *may* try to gain some leverage by propping up Greece . but my personal opinion is this will turn into some sort of tar baby as Greece absorbs far more resources from Russia than they ever get back, much like the Eastern Ukraine is far more of a mixed blessing for the Russians than they would like to admit; sure they look tough and threatening on the world stage as they try to reassert their imperial prerogatives over the former Czarist empire, but the drain on resources is far more than they can afford in the long run; the Russian economy is only about the size of Italy's, while the economy of the EU alone is many times larger. As Russia pushes, the EU is already becoming somewhat more united and spending more resources to react. Art some point the EU or the US will be pushing hard enough and from enough different points the Russians can no longer continue.

While armed conflict isn't a huge possibility (most European military forces are "toy armies"); you can bet the Germans will certainly be taking other steps to stem their losses and find ways to make the PIIGS pay back their loans. Tarriffs, steep import restrictions and other tools of economic warfare will be employed.

Against this backdrop, I can also see the Europeans collectively attempting to sweep their Islamic "immigration" problems out the door, so there will be lots of violence, just directed inwards rather than against fellow Europeans (at least at first). As the Chinese say; we WILL live in interesting times.

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