Will Syriza take power in Greece?

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epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Costas Lapavitsas: The Syriza strategy has come to an end

In a joint interview with German daily Der Tagesspiegel and ThePressProject International, Syriza MP and economist Costas Lapavitsas says that the time has come for Greece and its partners to understand that “they are flogging a dead horse”. Instead, they should work together on “an exit that will be negotiated and consensual”. The first step? “After 5 years of scaremongering and misinformation, there has to be at last a genuine public debate”.

quote:

How wise is it for a debate that has been dominating the columns of the world’s newspapers and the plenaries of the continent’s parliaments to remain a taboo in the country it mostly concerns? No matter whether Grexit would ultimately be a catastrophic strategy or “the only logical solution”, the point conveyed through this joint interview to Berlin daily Der Tagesspiegel and ThePressProject International is that, “there has to be a genuine public debate at last”.

http://www.thepressproject.net/article/74530

quote:

So for Greece, does leaving the EZ also mean leaving the EU?

The most important is to differentiate between the EU and the EZ. In this country, and in most of Europe, a sustained confusion has been going on for years. That the membership of one equals the membership of the other. It’s of course absurd because there are members of the EU which are not members of the European monetary union. If Greece leaves the euro, it doesn’t have to leave the EU at the same time. If the Greek people want to leave the EU, let them leave the EU. But that’s a separate question. This conflation has been deadly and it’s been used ideologically...

KenS

epaulo13 wrote:

Costas Lapavitsas: The Syriza strategy has come to an end

Yeah, well read the interview just above with Pamitch giving a differenet perspective on the same thing said by Lascaris in that interview.

It is well done.

Why read more one sided diatribes?

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

KenS wrote:

epaulo13 wrote:

Costas Lapavitsas: The Syriza strategy has come to an end

Yeah, well read the interview just above with Pamitch giving a differenet perspective on the same thing said by Lascaris in that interview.

It is well done.

Why read more one sided diatribes?

..are you speaking of that panitch/lascaris debate piece? i did listen to it. twice in fact. there have been times in the past that i haven’t agreed with panitch so when he spoke of the possible aftermath of a greek exit being a disaster i wasn’t ready to just accept it. and what he talked about he didn’t really explain very well i thought. lapavitsas on the other hand does explain with detail. he further explains that leaving the euro does not mean you need to leave the union. i find this an important point.

..while i do have some preconceived thinking i am quite able to set that aside in order to see the reality of what is possible. and that for me is possible by listening to a wide variety of voices. many alternative options. what you call diatribe i hear as good information.

..what panitch, lascaris and lapavitas do seem to agree on is that the greek people need to be consulted on what is going to happen openly and honestly. in my eyes this is key and i’m hoping it will happen.

KenS

epaulo13 wrote:

..are you speaking of that panitch/lascaris debate piece? i did listen to it. twice in fact. there have been times in the past that i haven’t agreed with panitch so when he spoke of the possible aftermath of a greek exit being a disaster i wasn’t ready to just accept it. and what he talked about he didn’t really explain very well i thought. lapavitsas on the other hand does explain with detail. he further explains that leaving the euro does not mean you need to leave the union. i find this an important point.

What Lascaris "explains in detail" is the position he has always had. He barely even mentions the criticism Leo makes in the interview.

It is no surprise that what Leo says comes off with more difficulty, since he at least is addressing the difficulties with the end game of the Syryza position, and where he freely admitts the sticky points.

The parallel for Lascaris would have been addressing Leo's criticism of the Left Platform: what about telling people the real implications of Grexit? The left keeps 'admitting' that Grexit will mean capital controls. Those are not trivial- but not what will impact virtually all supporters of the movement. All Lascaris did is very briefly acknowledge that the left had not talked about 'the details.' If you stick to criticism it is always easy to be clear.

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

KenS wrote:

What Lascaris "explains in detail" is the position he has always had. He barely even mentions the criticism Leo makes in the interview.

It is no surprise that what Leo says comes off with more difficulty, since he at least is addressing the difficulties with the end game of the Syryza position, and where he freely admitts the sticky points.

The parallel for Lascaris would have been addressing Leo's criticism of the Left Platform: what about telling people the real implications of Grexit? The left keeps 'admitting' that Grexit will mean capital controls. Those are not trivial- but not what will impact virtually all supporters of the movement. All Lascaris did is very briefly acknowledge that the left had not talked about 'the details.' If you stick to criticism it is always easy to be clear.

ken

..i was referring to what lapavitsas was saying not lascaris.

KenS

Let's be clear about what "rationing" means in the context of it inevitably following a Grexit.

No one disputes that the near term collapse and hardship in the aftermath of Grexit will be much worse than anything than any option staying in the Euro.

That collapse will mean there isnt enough for people in the lower incomes, let alone the unemployed. Whether it is money or stuff, it will have to be taken from those deemed to "have enough" and redistributed. And the tax system is not capable of doing that. Not is there anywhere near enough of liquid cash and assets available from the wealthy and oligarchs... let alone the further chaos if you go after them hammer and tongs. The bulk of redistribution is going to have to come from those who just have more- not the wealthy.

And this has to happen in a country rife with corruption- where you have to use the tools of governance available, even if you also use popular organizations.

War Communism in revolotionary Russia showed how the seemy privateers and vultures insinuate themselves into the new systems of redistribution. They are experts in using peoples' needs- what an opportunity.

This is no tea party. No, it is not doomed to be AWFUL. But it wont be pretty if it happens. A lot more difficult than where Greece is travelling now. Maybe there will be no choice in the end but to go there. But is it honest to not be forthright about what really is at risk? "We'll need capital controls. Yes."  Pfff. Is that preparing people?

The critics are saying Syryza HAS surrendered. Period. Read Panitch. Yes, the path Syryza is on may in the ned lead to surrender or Grexit, but we are not there yet. [To that much Lacaris agrees.]

But as long as there is reasonable hope for the path Syryza is on, why go straight to repudiation and Grexit and all that entails, about which the Left is not being honest. I'm being more explicit about the last part than Leo, but he says it. The grassroots that wants the left platform not unreasonably feels that oppositional culture will win over everything. It got them this far.

But the intellectual leadership that engages in strategy, like Lacaris, knows better. And they are not being up front.

KenS

But Lapavtsas is not in a discussion. There is less to see in monlogues.

and you did compare Lacaris to Panitch.

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

..i never meant to compare lacaris to panitch and i'm not sure that i did. and i really did get more info about an exit from lapavtsas than panitch. so i don't understand your arguement about monlogues.

 

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

KenS wrote:

Let's be clear about what "rationing" means in the context of it inevitably following a Grexit.

No one disputes that the near term collapse and hardship in the aftermath of Grexit will be much worse than anything than any option staying in the Euro.

..maybe you are right but i see no evidence of that as yet. what i have heard so far is that there will be a temporary initial adjustment period. what form that will take is unclear right now and begs more debate. it doesn't have to necessarily go by way of russia.

KenS

There would be no evidence now. Its not even possible, we have not gone there yet.

And you are not alone in seeing it as a "temporary adjustment period"

The leadership of the left knows otherwise.

NDPP

Negotiations With Greece Close to Breakdown as Budget Strains Worsen

http://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2015/03/negotiations-with-greece-close-to...

"Things are not looking good for Greece. As we have said, the best solution for Greece would be to default but stay in the Eurozone. But it is not clear that its creditors would tolerate that. The authorities are acting as if their commitment to austerity, in the form of structural reform, is so deep that they are prepared to put the Eurozone at risk to enforce them."

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

KenS wrote:

There would be no evidence now. Its not even possible, we have not gone there yet.

And you are not alone in seeing it as a "temporary adjustment period"

The leadership of the left knows otherwise.

..no we aren't there. but panitch raised it and i see no evidence that it has to go this way. the work has just begun to understand what it means to exit. no one knows anything for sure as yet. not even how bad things can get if greece stays with the euro. 

NDPP

After Pillaging Pensions, Greece Raids Utilities to Repay Troika; Bonds Plunge as Bank Run Accelerates

http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2015-03-19/after-pillaging-pensions-greece...

"...Congratulations to those who were among the Greeks who successfully withdrew the 300 M Eur. This is probably one of the last batches of capital permitted to be pulled from Greek banks.

Needless to say, unless Greece is actively negotiating right now, not only how to implement the current bailout, but the terms of the third Greek bailout as well (which will likely demand a left kidney from every Greek citizen as collateral), it is all over."

KenS

epaulo13 wrote:

 the work has just begun to understand what it means to Grexit. no one knows anything for sure as yet.

Right. But that does not stop critics from saying, with certainty, that the path now set down leads only to betrayal.... and that should already be headed for Grexit instead.

There is no "maybe" or "we need to look deeper at this" from critics. None.

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

KenS wrote:

epaulo13 wrote:

 the work has just begun to understand what it means to Grexit. no one knows anything for sure as yet.

Right. But that does not stop critics from saying, with certainty, that the path now set down leads only to betrayal.... and that should already be headed for Grexit instead.

There is no "maybe" or "we need to look deeper at this" from critics. None.

..just as others say greece should stay with the euro. or that people should trust that syriza is on the correct path. i have no trouble with this and hope all sides continue to talk. lots of it in fact. this is how people move forward.

KenS

not true: "just as others...."

Syryza leadership is not saying stay in the eurozone, come what may.

It is the critics who say with certainty that this path leads to betrayal- is actually already there. They are the ones with no qualification.

And the other half is that the government is not preparing people for Grexit. Of course, without leading the way by starting with the grassroots supporters and allies of Left Platform. There is NO preparation, and also mandate, without a full discussion of where Grexit most likely leads.

Of course there are no certainties. But it is bullshit dilletantism to not LEAD a full discussion of the likely risks, if that is where you want to go.

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

..i didn't say those things ken your saying i said or implied. it's like your creating straw people then whacking them. you don't address the posts when they appear on the thread but broad brush them. people say more than one thing. posts are not just about betrayal and you keep focusing on that..then discount them because they have said it. without addressing the concerns raised.

..i have continually posted that this should be discussed by the greek people and that syriza themselves should be facilitating this. i'm not seeing this happen but i believe that the people themselves will at some point come out and voice their opinions. that is what i'm waiting for. and full disclosure i don't trust governments no matter who they say they represent.

montrealer58 montrealer58's picture

What does Grexit mean?

Mainly, political histrionics of what should be a slight hiccup in the global economic system.

With Grexit, Greece gets fiscal and monetary freedom to try to solve its own problems, as well as a currency which can buffer it from bad trade winds from around the world.

This 'Grexit catastrophe' narrative is neoliberal/austerity propaganda. Things will not be so bad if there is a new Drachma. Greece is not Germany, and Greece does not need Germany's currency. The Germans occupied Greece with soldiers in the 1940s, now they are using currency. Why should Germany be welcome in Greece?

The Euro debt then becomes a fixed target. Euros will come into the Greek economy through trade. One solution is to reissue it as never-ending rollover debt which does not need interest payments. Like the US does, it is like throwing it into the sea. People always want to trade this stuff.

Whatever it may be, there will be a US Dollar fix on the Drachma whether the ECB likes it or not. If they can trade Bitcoins, they can trade Drachmas.

At the beginning, there will be currency controls, but if people want to leave Greece laden with new Drachmas the markets will give them whatever they will. These Drachmas will get sucked into the ECB as foreign currency reserves, which, again, can cover the debt.

The speculators alone would provide enough liquidity for the new Drachma, whatever its value was set at. Greece could run pure bunko pump and dump on their own currency and people would love it.

NDPP

Yanis Varoufakis: Of Greeks and Gemans: Re-imagining Our Shared Future

http://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2015/03/yanis-varoufakis-greeks-germans-r...

"...In practical terms, the 20th February Eurogroup agreement offers an excellent opportunity to move forward. Let us implement it immediately, as our leaders have urged..."

Left Turn Left Turn's picture

[url=http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-31992175]EU's Juncker pledges 2bn euros for Greek 'humanitarian crisis'[/url]

Quote:
The EU has pledged €2bn (£1.45bn; $2.15bn) to ease what it calls Greece's "humanitarian crisis" - echoing a term used by Greece to describe the results of its financial crisis.

European Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker said the money would be spent on growth and "social cohesion".

Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras welcomed the move, stressing a common need to tackle the humanitarian crisis.

EU leaders say Greece is due to produce a reform plan to fend off bankruptcy.

Mr Juncker's announcement came after marathon talks between Greek PM Alexis Tsipras, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and other European leaders in Brussels, on the sidelines of an EU summit.

Mr Tsipras needs EU support for reforms to unlock vital funds, avoid possible bankruptcy and a eurozone exit. The leftist leader has pledged to end austerity - but his plans have met resistance from Greece's EU creditors.

NDPP

Greece Raids Public Health Service Kitty as it Scrambles for a Short Term Lifeline; ECB Refuses To Cut A Break. UPDATED: No Deal, Greece Given Ultimatum

http://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2015/03/greece-raids-public-health-servic...

"As we have said from the beginning, Greece was unlikely to prevail in the absence of outside help. The US was unwilling or unable to do much more than offer lip service early on. What passes for the left in Europe has also failed to apply remotely enough pressure to have an impact.

Greece is meeting its fate alone, and the outcome is not likely to be prettty..."

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Greece: Solidarity centres push change from below

I visited Athens recently as part of a solidarity delegation from the British party Left Unity. On January 25, the day before radical left party SYRIZA’s election victory, two of us were fortunate enough to take part in a tour of some of the self-organising structures in Athens supported by the Solidarity for All network.

quote:

Solidarity for All is an umbrella network for a wide range of self-organising structures. It was formed in 2012 when SYRIZA created a “solidarity fund” out of the salaries of its newly elected MPs.

However, Solidarity for All is not merely a solidarity fund, nor is it led or controlled by SYRIZA. It largely exists to support and coordinate the more than 400 solidarity structures that have emerged in Greece during the crisis.

The structures grew out of the “movement of the squares” (the greek version of Occupy) in 2011 and have retained their culture of decision-making by popular assembly.

There are solidarity initiatives organising around health, education, food, cultural activities and legal support. It includes networks “without middlemen” that create direct links between agricultural producers and urban consumers, and workers co-operatives such as the VIO.ME factory in Thessaloniki.

In the two years since its foundation, the Solidarity Train has increased its provision of food to the community and expanded into other areas. It now organises cultural activities such as lessons in dance and music, as well as English and French....

http://leftunity.org/report-from-solidarity-centres-in-athens/

eta:

Among the activists we spoke to, there were different views on the January 25 elections, which were still to come. All were left-wing and anti-memoranda, but political affiliation and support was varied.

However, there was uniform agreement that, whatever the result of the election, the solidarity movement must continue addressing the humanitarian crisis and building a grassroots movement opposed to austerity.

Chrisoula Roussaki, an activist from the Solidarity Train, summed up the prevailing sentiment at the centre: “We accept the risks, we are prepared for the worst scenarios but we will continue until the end.”

iyraste1313

are we at an historic turning point?

from zero hedge..... today......

Greece's Energy Minister Panagiotis Lafazanis will meet his Russian counterpart and the CEO of energy giant Gazprom in Moscow on Monday, as he hit out at the EU and Germany for tightening a 'noose' around the Greek economy.

 

Outspoken Lafazanis, on the left wing of Greece's co-ruling Syriza party, will meet Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak and Gazprom Chief Executive Alexei Miller as well as other senior government officials, the energy ministry said on Saturday.

 

Lafazanis' visit will come just over a week before Tsipras is due to meet Russian President Vladimir Putin in Moscow although the Greek government has stressed it is not seeking funding from the Kremlin.

KenS

Hedging with Russia is good.

Money from Russia comes with business/ownership/commercial strings too. Going there is only possibly less risky than the current roulette game Greece is playing with the EU.

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

After Syriza: What’s next for Spain?

Although Podemos are unlikely to win an outright majority in the general election, they have galvanised the opposition to the conservative government, while simultaneously challenging the parties of the old left.

The significance of Syriza’s electoral victory for anti-austerity parties and politics across Europe is slowly, but steadily sinking in. The next showdown will be in Spain where local and regional elections are due on 24 May, and a general election will be held before the end of the year. An electoral victory of Podemos will signal that the hard line neo-liberal block opposing anti-austerity policies in the Eurozone has not succeeded in silencing the voices of the people. Even without an electoral victory though, Podemos have won: they have already changed the political terrain in Spain and beyond....

https://www.opendemocracy.net/can-europe-make-it/marina-prentoulis-lasse...

josh

At best, all Greece will have achieved is trading austerity for austerity lite. But with the primary surplus targets it has set, it may not even achieve that much in the way of lessening of its pain. The main impact will likely be to shift more of the burden to the wealthy, and Greece may also get some humanitarian relief from the EU to improve the optics and assuage the creditors’ consciences (at least for the ones that actually possess them). That is not a meaningless outcome, but it clearly falls short of what Tsipras is trying to convince his coalition members and the Greek public that he will obtain. them.

http://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2015/03/greece-submits-inadequately-detailed-reform-list-tsipras-tells-parliament-peace-honor-um-honorable-compromise.html

josh

Greece drawing up plans to reinstate the drachma.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/economics/11513341/Greece-draws-up-dr...

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

German Chancellor Asked Greek Prime Minister to Reduce Pensions

Speaking on Greek television on Monday, the Deputy Minister referred to the recent meeting of the two countries’ leaders in Berlin and the talk on Greece’s debt. According to Mardas, the German chancellor suggested during the talks that the Greek government should proceed with pension cuts. Tsipras immediately rejected the suggestion.

According to Mardas, the group of creditors’ representatives, who are in the process of studying the Greek reform proposals, also suggested mass lay-offs in the public sector. The Greek side rejected that suggestion as well.

Mardas said that the key points the two sides disagree are issues regarding the labor market and labor laws....

http://greece.greekreporter.com/2015/03/30/german-chancellor-asked-greek...

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Dangerous Days Ahead

In the following conversation, translated by David Broder, French journalist Aude Lancelin and political philosopher Alain Badiou are joined by Syriza central committee member and Jacobin contributor Stathis Kouvelakis. Their discussion focuses on the tense negotiations between the European Central Bank (ECB) and Greece, as well as the historical roots of Syriza and what options the party now has.

The exchange is well worth reading in full, especially in light of yesterday’s news that Greece is preparing to nationalize the country’s banking system and introduce a parallel currency....

 

KenS

Given the hardball consistently played by the EU paymasters, the Syryza government would have to at least go through the motions of preparing to bring in the drachma. But some of the pessimists are so inclined to see them as sellouts, that they didnt expect the government to go even this far.

But it does remain to be seen how far or at what point the government will go down the hard road of telling the EU to get lost. I agree with Leo Panitch, who defends and supports the government's actions to date, but freely admitts that when it comes to the final push and shove... the goverment may basically cave in the end, for fear of the consequences of exiting the euro zone.

Personally, I am coming around to seeing Grexit as probably inevitable. But there is still a lot to play out before we get to that being the only reasonable option left for the movement.

NDPP

Greek Defiance Mounts As Alexis Tsipras Turns To Russia and China

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/comment/ambroseevans_pritchard/115103...

"Mr Tsipras is now playing the Russian card with an icy ruthlessness, more or less threatening to veto fresh EU measures against the Kremlin as the old set expires. 'We disagree with sanctions. The new European security architecture must include Russia,' he told the TASS news agency..."

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

eta..the link broke so i found another

Greek activists welcome much needed breathing space

quote:

Therefore: using the opportunity – creating alternative institutions

The atmosphere nowadays is sceptical, but not hopeless. Ultimately, nobody wishes to see SYRIZA fail, while at the same time nobody is believing in fundamental change either. A way out of this dilemma is focusing on the space opened by the new government to reorganize and extend the sphere of influence of the social movements.

Besides some impressive initiatives which combat the direct effects of austerity policies like foodbanks and solidarity clinics, there is another remarkable development. People are talking about the creation and extension of alternative economic networks – and they already started working on it. In the last years, many cooperatives were born, producer-consumer networks and producer markets were established. Some were established out of pure necessity, but there is also a realization of the fact that there won’t be any fundamental change without alternative economic institutions.

Danea, member of the anti-authoritarian group Alpha Kappa, argues that now that the movements have more “breathing space” a new range of possibilities is presenting itself. “So now it’s the time for us to go beyond this traditional forms of practices, like showing solidarity or any other symbolic action. Now, we can concentrate on building economic relations from the bottom up to offer an alternative to the capitalist market. People are fed up with big words, of how the production or the society will look like in the far future, which is not available to them. They need results here and now and it’s up to us to show them that these ways exist and work for them – here and now.”

http://kielarowski.net/2015/04/05/greek-activists-welcome-much-needed-br...

 

NDPP

Greece Offers 5 Key Points For Consensus With International Creditors

http://rt.com/business/247141-greece-anti-crisis-plan/

"...Greece expects to reach a preliminary agreement with creditor countries on financing the economy and the external debt at a meeting of eurozone finance ministers on April, 24, Varoufakis said.

'Preliminary results till be achieved at the meeting of the Eurogroup on April, 24,' he said, adding that Greece expects to negotiate the unblocking of the last tranche of 7.2 B euro from the EU loan program and to negotiate restructuring of external debt by June.

The Greek authorities have also said they would pay a $450 million tranche of the IMF on April 9 and start a dialogue on economic issues, said the head of the IMF, Christine Lagarde, Sunday after a meeting with Greek Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis in Washington.

Varoufakis, in turn, said the country intends to fulfill 'all the obligations with respect to all the creditors.' Both Lagarde and Varoufakis agreed that the uncertainty about Greece's ability to repay debts is not in the interests of Athens."

josh

Greek lawmakers voted on Tuesday in favor of setting up a committee to examine the circumstances under which Greece agreed to bailouts totaling 240 billion euros ($260 billion) with the European Union and International Monetary Fund.

. . . .

"After five years of parliamentary silence on the major issues that caused the bailout catastrophe, today we commence a procedure that will give answers to the questions concerning the Greek people," Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras told lawmakers before the vote in the early hours of Tuesday.

http://www.ekathimerini.com/4dcgi/_w_articles_wsite1_1_07/04/2015_548890

josh

Germany's economy minister branded Greece's demand for 278.7 billion euros ($302 billion) in reparations from World War Two as "stupid" on Tuesday, while the German opposition said Berlin should repay a forced loan dating from the Nazi occupation.

Greek Deputy Finance Minister Dimitris Mardas made the demand on Monday, seizing on an emotional issue in a country where many blame Germany, their biggest creditor, for the tough austerity measures and record high unemployment connected with two international bailouts totaling 240 billion euros.

http://www.reuters.com/article/2015/04/07/us-eurozone-greece-reparations-germany-idUSKBN0MY1JR20150407

NDPP

Greece and Russia Flirt but No Finance Deal (and vid)

http://rt.com/shows/in-the-now-summary/248089-greece-russia-police-shoot...

Interview with Greek cabinet minister

NDPP

Greece Makes  450 Million euro Payment To IMF

http://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2015/04/10/gree-a10.html

"The fact that Syriza has accepted the austerity dictates and is now merely negotiating with the troika over details was clear during Alexis Tsipras' visit to Russia..."

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

IMF made a €2.5billion profit from loans to Greece

Nice profit. With an interest rate of 3.6% the International Monetary Fund has made a 2.5 billion euro profit from the loans to Greece since 2010. Of curse, nobody lends money without profit, right? How much more when the majority of the IMF bailout goes to save banks and is paid back by people’s taxes.

quote:

In the same talking, Germany has made a profit of 380 million euro from Greek loans and Austria 100 million euro, as I read recently. Not to mention the rest of the whining EU partners…

http://www.keeptalkinggreece.com/2015/04/08/imf-made-a-e2-5billion-profi...

NDPP

Anti-EU Forum Athens

http://www.antiimperialista.org/athens_anti-euro_forum_2015

 

The Left Platform of Syriza together with all the Greek forces preparing for the Euroexit are preparing this meeting..."

Mr. Magoo

Quote:
Of curse, nobody lends money without profit, right?

Generally, no.  It's called the time value of money.

Quote:
How much more when the majority of the IMF bailout goes to save banks and is paid back by people’s taxes.

Were the majority of lenders banks?  Were the borrowers "people"?

From the link:

Quote:
The IMF has been charging an effective interest rate of 3.6% on its loans to Greece. This is far more than the interest rate the institution needs to meet all its costs, currently around 0.9%

Has the author never heard of risk?

Higher interest rates are common for borrowers who are perceived to be more likely to default.  Is that unreasonable?

josh

Sure charging a higher rate to cover risk is not unusual. But dictating the borrower's family budget is.

swallow swallow's picture

Given the atated purpose of the IMF, commercial risk rates do not seem reasonable. 

Mr. Magoo

Quote:
But dictating the borrower's family budget is.

It's evidently been IMF policy since 1952 -- certainly not some kind of special new torment for Greece.  And while you may disagree with the IMF, it's not like they impose conditions for no good reasons.  I suppose the alternative is "don't turn to the IMF".

Quote:
Given the atated purpose of the IMF, commercial risk rates do not seem reasonable.

The Greek Bond rate right now is on the order of 12%.  Paying 3.6% to the IMF would seem less of a ding than paying 12% to other creditors.

josh

Mr. Magoo wrote:

Quote:
But dictating the borrower's family budget is.

It's evidently been IMF policy since 1952 -- certainly not some kind of special new torment for Greece.  And while you may disagree with the IMF, it's not like they impose conditions for no good reasons.  I suppose the alternative is "don't turn to the IMF".

Quote:
Given the atated purpose of the IMF, commercial risk rates do not seem reasonable.

The Greek Bond rate right now is on the order of 12%.  Paying 3.6% to the IMF would seem less of a ding than paying 12% to other creditors.


I don 't know if it's the same conditions, but even if it were, doesn't make it right. And it wasn't Syriza that turned to the IMF. They're trying to deal with the consequences of that decision

Mr. Magoo

Quote:
I don 't know if it's the same conditions, but even if it were, doesn't make it right.

I don't see how the IMF could win that.

If the conditions aren't identical to those imposed on some other borrower then "clearly they're out to make a special example of Greece!".

And if they are identical, then "the IMF seems to feel that a 'one-size-fits-all approach is appropriate!".

But I'm not sure what makes conditions, at least in the abstract, "not right".  Should the IMF just send the trucks full of money, no questions asked?  The money isn't a right, it's a loan.  Can't live with the terms?  Don't take the loan.

Quote:
And it wasn't Syriza that turned to the IMF. They're trying to deal with the consequences of that decision

When they were campaigning, do you suppose they understood that any new government, anywhere, inherits the old government's problems?

And anyway, wasn't the original plan to sit the IMF down (along with the ECB and Angela Merkel) and explain to them how things were going to be different from now on?

iyraste1313

from zerohedge.com...

Greece signs a gas pipeline deal with Russia! One step closer to eurozone dissolution?...as we debate the niceties of neoliberal political preferences in this country

KenS

iyraste1313 wrote:

Greece signs a gas pipeline deal with Russia! One step closer to eurozone dissolution?...

That is not even a small step, even a tiny step closer, to Greece withdrawing from the eurozone. Which in itself only has only some not that great chance any more of starting a dissolution of the eurozone with a Grexit.

People get carried away with fairy dust bringing your dreams. If you want your revolution, its just going to be hard fucking work. Thats it.

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

..eta new link

Self-organized workers press SYRIZA to keep its promises

Workers’ movements and their supporters from throughout Greece embarked on a caravan to Athens earlier this month to speak with and make demands on the new SYRIZA government. They are asking for concrete support for their struggles, each of which is based on self-organization and horizontality. Saturday, April 4 marked the first day of a caravan that traveled to various towns throughout Greece, meeting with and gathering other workers in struggle in each location, who then all made their way to Athens.

The struggles range from the Thessaloniki-based recuperated factory Vio.Me and the self-managed television and radio station ERT, who together are spearheading the caravan, to workers occupying their workplaces and resisting permanent layoffs in a variety of ways in other parts of the country. The caravan culminated in Athens with 500 women cleaners who are in negotiations with SYRIZA for what they hope will be their fair rehiring.

What all of the participants have in common is that they organize in assemblies, where each person has equal decision-making power, and attempt to break down hierarchies and power structures. They are petitioning the new SYRIZA government for a variety of things, the core of which is that they are able to maintain their horizontality and self-organization, which some want to see codified in law....

http://kielarowski.net/2015/04/17/self-organized-workers-press-syriza-to...

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Greece’s Government: ‘Molon Labe’

An high-ranking official close to Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras said the Greek government is not planing to give in to its creditors’ pressures and go against the program they had promised to the Greek people who brought them to power.

Greece’s creditors — the European Central Bank, the European Commission and the International Monetary Fund — are asking for reforms that will bring more austerity to the country that already has more than half of its youth unemployed. The creditors are also asking for heavier taxation in sales, pension cuts up to 15% and cuts in public sector workers’ salaries, the government official said.

The official told capital.gr that the government is not even thinking to resign, noting that “if they want, let them try to overthrow us.”

The Greek government seems prepared to collide with creditors as negotiations continue to stall. The Greek side insists on the “red lines” it has drawn on certain measures while creditors insist that Athens should proceed with required reforms before any further financial aid is released. Thereby an agreement seems unlikely....

http://greece.greekreporter.com/2015/04/16/greeces-government-molon-labe/

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Athens is being driven closer to a Grexit

A trap door is slowly opening under Athens. The Finns appeared to give it a little nudge last week with a leaked report offering a glimpse of its battle plans should the Greeks exit the euro. In Berlin, the finance minister’s obsession with paying down debts (bizarre when German infrastructure is falling apart) was on display again and gave a further clue that he will not tolerate Greece reneging on its own borrowing.

While words like denouement have been used before in reference to the crisis, it looks as if we are on the last chapter of a very long book. With only days left to present a plan and not more than two weeks to come up with some serious cash to repay outstanding loans, Athens is at crunch point....

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/apr/12/athens-is-being-driven-clos...

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