The Greek people are once again getting a raw deal

The Greek people are once again getting a raw deal

Despite promising to renegotiate the bailout deal, to soften austerity measures coming down the pike, the new Conservative coalition government in Greece is moving forward with harsh new spending cuts. Even though the New Democracy party supported the bailout and austerity program during the campaign, the Party did promise to soften the austerity blow and have the spending cuts spread out over two years rather than inflicted immediately. But now, in the face of opposition from creditor nations like Germany, Greece is dropping its demands, and accelerating austerity that has already leveled the Greek economy, shooting unemployment up above 20%.

At least now, for the first time since this crisis began, there’s an alternative to austerity taking root in nearby France, where the Socialists have taken control and are promising to increase wages for working people, while forcing the super wealthy to pay their fair share in taxes again. Let’s hope France succeeds, the whole European continent depends on it.

Comments

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 2 years 24 weeks ago
#1

Vive la France...Vive la Resistance...Long live the Revolution! Vive la FRENCH Fries! Force the super-rich to pay their fair share of the taxes! But keep those politicians in check who want to build "Bridges to Nowhere".

mitchellhirsch's picture
mitchellhirsch 2 years 24 weeks ago
#2

The ancient cradle of democracy -- Greece -- is being devastated by a combination of a foreign financial oligarchy and corrupt domestic politicians. With unemployment at 22.6% and rising, in the fifth year of what is now an out-and-out depression, the austerity recipe dictated for Greece by the ECB-EU-IMF 'Troika' includes massive layoffs, slashing unemployment insurance and the minimum wage, and the wholesale privatization sell-off of public systems and services to finance debt service.

But, while the new French government has begun to take the more progressive economic steps mentioned here, it too is constrained by the Eurozone's insane fixation on all nations meeting austerity-driven deficit targets.

Unless and until the people of Europe force a reversal of the deficit target core of economic and fiscal policy, there's little prospect for improvements even in France and throughout Europe. And without debt moratoria and a complete rejection of the austerity conditions being imposed on Greece, little prospect for the current or next generation of Greeks.

Alan Lunn's picture
Alan Lunn 2 years 24 weeks ago
#3

We depend on it, too, considering there will be blowback from any European economic meltdown. We are all now victims of Larry Summers economic libertarianism and the disastrous era of "financial innovation" along with the 700+ trillion dollar swaps market bubble that is running on empty, is stretched to maximum, is still without capital requirements, and is the means by which money has been extracted to the banking monopolies and into the 1/3 of all the world's money that is in tax havens -- the biggest heist of history.

And Fox News still thinks it's all Obama and big government to blame. They aren't just spreading ignorance, they're spreading foolhardiness. Our debt is only 15 trillion. JP Morgan under the thief Jamie Dimon (who owns the Senate), owns 55 trillion just in one type of extremely toxic derivative. That's over three times the U.S. debt. Please tell me why the Tea Party wants to hold American government hostage again this year over the "debt crisis." The right-wing I came from has gone totally nuts.

Kend's picture
Kend 2 years 24 weeks ago
#4

The top 1% pay 38% of the taxes and the top 10% pay 70% can anyone please explain to me how that isn't a far share.

renegrippo's picture
renegrippo 2 years 24 weeks ago
#5

That's easy. Depending on the income and wealth of the top 1% it could be extremely unfair. You've just repeated one of the biggest misleading facts that the conservative echo chamber has been repeating for years now. Think about why it is they are paying such a high percentage of the total tax burden given their low percentage of the population even while their effective tax rate is lower than most taxpayers thanks to Bush giving himself a tax cut. IT'S BECAUSE THEY ARE TAKING HOME AN EVEN HIGHER PERCENTAGE OF THE TOTAL INCOME.

This one misleading fact is what is causing millions of people in this country to vote for republicans who just wind up making matters worse precisely becaue of this mindset that you have espoused. This one data point illustrates the disparity of wealth and income that exists in the USA yet conservatives have successful used it to make people feel sorry for the 1%, who are doing just fine.

It's a very sad situation. I'm sorry you have fallen for it yourself.

2950-10K's picture
2950-10K 2 years 24 weeks ago
#6

Damn right they're getting a raw deal, just like the teabag austerity lie in this country.

Let the rich grab everything via Reaganomics and, "unregulated capitalism,"........then blame the resulting economic crash on the 99% for out of control entitlements and living beyond their means...... oh, I almost forgot, those overpaid union workers!

In my opinion, actually it's a simple fact these days, an increase in wages is a correction, redirecting wealth to those among us who both created and were entitled to it in the first place... go France!

Almost everyone I ask, have never heard of the Ryan budget plan let alone Paul Ryan. Thanks to shows like Meet The Press, the average citizen remains lost in a rightwing hell, destined to vote for David Gregory's best interests and against their own!

No coverage in Philly! .......should have invited a dozen teabaggers wearing tricorns and waving Ben Franklin designed, French and Indian war snake flags!

Thank goodness we have a few like Thom, Mike Papantonio, and Senator Sanders involved in the mass media and fighting like hell for all of us 99.9%ers!

js121's picture
js121 2 years 24 weeks ago
#7

The Greek's will revolt once the cuts start affecting their ever-decreasing income. They were fooled by lies; but, open those eyes and watch what they do.

TVcameraman 2 years 23 weeks ago
#8

I wonder how long before the Greek people start a revolt. I also wonder which nation(s) will send in their police/military to quell it...?

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 2 years 23 weeks ago
#9

Higg's Bossom? Oh, Higg's Boson! Oh, FSM, Never mind!

And speaking of internet outages...has anyone else experienced an internet outage yet? I had one this morning/noonish that made me wonder if I was seeing an early occurrence of the DNSChanger Virus that is supposed to hit us tomorrow, Monday 7/9/12.

I tried all the usual troubleshooting things..power off/on my modem/router..(didn't do a modem/router reset..too many things to set up again)...ping to my router/modem..ok..ping to web sites..not ok...ping to known good ip numbers...still not ok. Phone (audio) line up ok. Checked all connections. Using Wireshark to catch and analyze all the packets. Guess I should have run a Noise Margin/Attenuation/power DSL line check but didn't. Was getting ready to try another modem/router, and a network card, when my internet connection came back. Must have scared it into submission!

Are you scared yet? Scared enough to participate in the "FBI sting operation(?)" when you go to their web site to have your computer "scanned" for the "DNSChanger virus"..and anything else they can find..pirated music, videos, or other things?

But, I guess the reason why they say it will happen tomorrow is because they are going to pull a server that they had been using to circumvent the effects of the virus which has been around for some number of years now. I wouldn't be surprised, though, if they didn't create the DNSChanger virus themselves to redirect suspect targets to their server for "honeypot" monitoring. Remember Duqu, Stuxnet, and Flame virus they launched on Iran and it got out and infected the world?

I had already done the manual checks for the virus and did not find anything. The virus is supposed to be so elusive, however, that virus checker programs are ineffective (what else is new?).

There are some things to check in the registry and I was ok there. Another indication was supposed to be to look at your DNS ip number in ipconfig /all (ifconfig for Linux) and they gave about a dozen, or so, ip numbers that if you had them (as your DNS ip in ipconfig) it would be an indication that you had the virus.

Problem is that most people use 192.168.1.1 which is the default access point (their router/modems) ip number for defaulting to their ISP DNS. Some people, like myself, like to use various optimal DNS ip numbers sometimes.(Go to grc.com and run Steve Gibson's Service called DNS Spoofability Test and his test will show you a list of the results showing the best DNSs to use...which you enter into your ipv4 properties.)

Seems to me that if the virus is "changing the DNS ip in your computer" which redirects you to an undesired web site (the rogue dns which provides ip numbers to direct you to an unwanted web site)...and if you see only the default DNS ip of the ISP DNS (eg:192.168.1.1) on your computer then any problems with redirections or even outages would have to be at the ISP or elsewhere. ie: they have the DNSChanger virus redirecting at their level...not mine. At any rate..you can change your DNS ip to any one you want...it doesn't have to be your ISP. But no mattter what DNS ip number you have you should still be able to ping to some ip address on the internet. And, so far, my ISP has not owned up to an outage.

Yes, it could still have been just me, or my equipment, but I'm paranoid. And why shouldn't we all be? And not just because our kitchen appliances will be monitoring us in the future...maybe even now. And if that sounds really odd or paranoid, or even crazy, then you don't know much about our current technology and what these people are capable of.

And in the event I can't get on to the internet tomorrow..."Good afternoon, good evening, and good night".

Global's picture
Global 2 years 23 weeks ago
#10

Bring some fairness to the tax code and go to a flat tax. People are getting tired of the whiners that vote in these idiots that spend taxpayer money in every give away safety net program they can devise to capture more and more slaves to the government. Wake up and try a little personal freedom for a change.

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 2 years 23 weeks ago
#11

"The Government" are the lowly paid (compared to the private sector CEOs and other top execs) representatives. Granted, politicians know, and we know, that the system is corrupted by the private-sector's big money and the only way to get reelected is to pander to these greedy wolves. I'd say that the capitalist private-sector wolves are the ones to whom we are enslaved...not the government. Over the last 30-some years our wages and benefits have been reduced way more than our taxes have risen...and it has been the capitalist wolves who have made this happen...not the government...although the government could have done a better job of protecting us from the wolves. Although we often see the government as being very wasteful..it is the government that has been bought and paid for by wealthy capitalist wolves...who force them to spend money on seemingly wasteful projects. We need to get the government to stop being puppets of the wealthy private sector corporateers. Aye, me bucko, the corporateers are robbing us blind and trying to blame it all on their useful idiots...the government.

We need the government to raise taxes on the wealthy, to get them to pay their fair share of the taxes in a truly accelerated progressive tax...not a flat tax. The capitalist wolves would love a flat tax. Even with an accelerated progressive tax (with no loopholes) the wealthy can live quite comfortably and would not even really miss the extra taxes they would have to pay. The only thing that might take a really tiny hit would be a little bit of their foreign, off-shore bank accounts...which they could never hope to spend anyway. And some of that they gamble away in very risky (discounting eventual government bailouts) derivatives and other high-risk Wall Street Casino bets. They are just being overly greedy and heartless and even unpatriotic. They sure don't care a whit about the well-being of their fellow countrymen/women. And anyone who sees things THEIR way are either one of them or useful idiots working against their best interests and are too dumb to know it yet. As you get older and more destitute and hurting for health care you may wish you had not been on the side of the capitalist pigs (I mean wolves).

Capitalist pigs may have a finger pointing at the government but they have 3 fingers pointing right back at themselves. But the prominent finger they are pointing at all of us is the middle finger. We need to bite it off!

Global's picture
Global 2 years 23 weeks ago
#12

That is crony capitalism, to my point, quit electing these idiots that are influenced by the power. Capitalism is still the best overall system in the world. You can't cut the head off just to cure some of the human weakness of greed. The problem is crony capitalism, especially the ones that say on the outside "please don't regulate me" but inside the smoke filled rooms they say regulate this and that so my competition can't keep up. Tell me what would pounding the so called rich with more and more taxes do for any of us? would that help create any jobs other than government jobs and continue to feed this beast that is dragging us over the financial cliff. Look at the death spiral that is Europe, is that our future?

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 2 years 23 weeks ago
#13

There are many terms that can help describe what is going on between "the government" and those with enough money to influence them. Crony capitalism is one usually meant to describe the collusion of those in government with those with the money that can buy influence in government. Big business can say "Here's some money for your campaign funds...now, here is what we expect in return"..and usually, it doesn't even need to be said..But, I think that some use the term in an attempt to disparage only the government and not the capitalist wolves. This would be like buying a cheap whore, then besmirching her for being a whore....overlooking the fact that you are just as much a whore...or even a bigger whore...even though the strict definition of the word would not fit.

Only the wealthy can do this and so therefore only the wealthy can effectively influence government. Therefore, it is a government "by the rich, and for the rich". It should be the rich that we tax the most, and proportional to the profits that they rake in, and not those who can least afford it. If "taxation without representation" has any meaning at all it should describe what is happening against those at the bottom 90%.

Just as the wealthy French Nobility refused to pay their taxes, the Capitalists refuse to pay their fair share of the taxes. And that would mean a Progressive tax. They SHOULD pay more...they have reaped the benefits...and most especially since the Bush tax cuts for the rich. It is time to stop coddling these greedsters, who profit by shipping our jobs overseas, and chop off a lot of our "Nobility's" heads (figuratively speaking, of course)...or make them pay a progressive tax that equals what they had to pay in Eisenhower's days....a whole whopping lot more than a mere return to pre-Bush days.

As I watched CNN, this morning, I hear them say that Obama is trying to give 90% of the population tax breaks while not giving the top 10% the same tax breaks that they have been enjoying since the Bush years. They said something like... "Obama's new proposed bill would make anyone earning less that $250K a year get the breaks and anyone above would have to continue with the pre-Bush years tax breaks". And then they turned right around...like they are in a "Republican Bubble"...and said that if someone earning a combined income of $80K a year, they would have to pay something like $1800 more in taxes. I don't know, maybe I was watching Fox Snooze by mistake.

CNN is turning out more and more like Fox Snooze every day. They said that Obama knows that the bill doesn't stand a chance and that it is merely a political ploy. Yes, that could very well be true...I don't believe much in what Obama says anymore because I believe he is really a Republican in disguise. But, it does highlight that the rich are getting away with murder...and it is murder...because of their rampant greed...people will (or are) starving and dying for lack of affordable health care. It is a war that these greedy corporations have started which are killing people...and will kill many more.

I agree that we have to stop electing these idiots who are influenced by money...but who are we gonna trust? Ghost Busters? I think it is insane to keep voting for people that we believe are going to finally work in OUR best interest just to be surprised that they were either lying to us or they find out how insurmountable and useless their pre-election sloganeering was in the face of the entrenched corrupt system in place now. Right now, the ones with all the gold...rule. They were able to amass all the gold through the Reagan and Bush years of favorable tax breaks to the rich. There is only one solution now...and it ain't pretty. But it is necessary...unless a whole lot of wealthy people straighten up and unlock the shackles that are now imprisoning us. I think a jail-break is necessary...because the prison guards are not going to let us go. And we're all in for life...and due to our ineffective and unfair healthcare system....death!

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 2 years 23 weeks ago
#14

What is destroying Europe, and even the rest of the world, is not socialism. What is destroying us all is the games that heartless and greedy capitalists have been playing around the world. Greedy and conniving capitalist bullies that set up governments to sell out their own people to get them locked into a death spiral. Greece was fine, relatively speaking until Goldman Sachs went in with a financial scheme that ended up wrecking their country. Same thing with Russia...

It used to take sending in troops and heavy artillery in order to invade and take over other countries. Now they do it on the sly by financial trickery. And, of course, if after they ruin themselves financially, and are weakened militarily, then if they fail to pay up...we can send in the Jackals...target heads of state that refuse to obey. Maybe that is what some would-be US politicians are afraid of? They sent in the Jackals to take care of JFK and a number of foreign leaders that made waves. Of course the US Military Industrial Complex has unmanned drones, and satellites, and all the technology (all-be-it "Made in China") to bully their way into these countries to impose their will.

Most of our computers are either manufactured in China...or at least many of the Integrated Circuit (IC) chips are. I used to work in the industry and saw, first hand, how advanced these foreign companies were. (Korea, Taiwan, and even China was starting to get advanced equipment..and that was about 8-9 years ago. Some of those Korean IC plants were even more modern and advanced than many plants I went to in the US...at the time.) The US often designs the chips, but has many parts of the manufacturing process of those chips done in China. And China has reverse engineered these chips and could easily have made modifications, back-doors. So much of our technology is really suspect.

Global's picture
Global 2 years 23 weeks ago
#15

Many smart economist believe that even if you tax the rich at 90 percent you will never get revenues of more than 20 percent of GDP. All you will succeed in doing is killing the work ethic and driving the economy underground to avoid the taxes. What scares me is that with this crap economy we still have a president and his policies that is favored to win re-election, the tipping point into European socialism is here. Deficit spending means nothing to these liberal radicals, they just become pawns to the central banks. The middle class and the poor suffer the slow death of inflation as the printing presses drone on. Self inflicted inflation will be the shackles of the middle class. The silent killer. Not to mention the damage it is causing to the baby boomers as they retire. Think about retirement when interest rates are lower than inflation. It won't work. He who controls the money (central banks) controls the people. We are the frogs in the pot of water.

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 2 years 23 weeks ago
#16

I certainly agree that we are the frogs in the slowly boiling pot of water. But I believe that it isn't because of liberalism or socialism...it is because the rich have been driving us all to our destruction. And what kills the work ethic the most is when these rich connivers send our jobs overseas. They are already cheating us out of our ability to survive and feed our families.They are maximizing their profits at our expense by exploiting cheap labor.

And the thing that is driving inflation is the ever increasing prices for goods and services being overlorded by overpaid CEOs and capitalists who expect way too much compensation. After these capitalists continue in cutting back on quality and labor in their endeavor to maximize profits in the shortest possible time...they are running out of rope...and will eventually hang themselves with it. The only thing left is their marketing hype of shoddy products that no one wants to buy even if they could afford it....because they were laid off years ago and are struggling just to get by.

I'm sure there were those who said the same things (about taxing the rich) in Eisenhower's day but they did just fine in producing a tremendously strong and growing economy. And that lasted until Reagan started to turn things for the worse...and Bush nosedived our economy by servicing the rich with all their tax breaks and anti-labor practices.

Our economy went to sh!t when corporations started downsizing paychecks and benefits and shipping our jobs overseas. So, it is finally time we reverse this very destructive practice and tax the rich. We also need to penalize any corporation that chooses to send our jobs overseas. Penalize them for having offshore tax-shelter havens.

And the Republicans have no problem on "deficit spending" if they are getting wealthy off the outcome. The Military Industrial Complex has no problem with deficit spending when it comes to murdering people in other countries in the stupid, illegal, and immoral wars they start. As long as American corporations are raking in the money from government programs they don't care a whit about deficit spending. The only time they care, or mention, deficit spending is when it is time for the government to meet it's social-spending obligations. They don't care if the people are cheated out of the social contracts like social security, etc. That's when they sound like immature sniveling brats throwing tantrums and stomping their feet. They are greedy bastards that have committed criminal acts and should be thrown into jail and have their ill-gotten gains taken from them and put back into the commons.

renegrippo's picture
renegrippo 2 years 23 weeks ago
#17

This is more nonsense.

1) When the marginal tax rate is high the incentive to pay exectutives ongodly wages at the expense of all other workers is diminished and average wages go up. This produces economic stimulous.

2) A high marginal tax rate is a fair way to ensure that the ALL of the costs associated with that income is covered by the individual who is receiving that income. It's very easy to ensure that revenue goes to the right person. It's very hard to ensure that all of the costs associated with that revenue are born by the individual who is reaping the revenue.

3) It's not only about the actual tax revenue received by an increased marginal tax rate. it's also about what happens to that money. If it goes to the rich who will consider extremely disposable income it will stagnate. If it goes to reduce the deficit and preclude further austerity it will have a popcorn effect by virtue of the effect on the ecomony. Our economy is heavily dependend on consumption.

4) Look up the word socialism. A high marginal tax rate is not socialism. Consumer protection is not socialism. It's not hard to figure out what socialism is. Obama has not espoused socialism in any way shape or form.

5) Why would someone not want to earn more money just because the tax rate on that money is high. Wouldn't a high marginal tax rate be incentive to earn more so you could increase take home pay? Are you referring to the hypothetical, laughable Laffer curve?

6) The current deficit was not created by Obama. It is well known what has created it; a) Bush tax cuts, b) two wars, c) medicare part D that was a huge tax giveaway to the pharmaceutical industry, d) economic downturn, much of which was created by conservitvie policies to deregulate wall street. It is a fact that the increase in federal spending under Obama's watch is down from many prior administrations. Obama could not end the wars on the day he took office. He is not a dictator and therefore could not repeal a law that contributed heavily to the deficit by just saying, "make it so." He's been trying to do things that improve the economy, but...

Because the republicans have maintained control of the senate by abusing the philibuster, effectively requiring 60 votes to get anything done, Obama's policies in large part have not even been implemented.

And the dems never really had 60 votes because two of the 60 (Bird and Kennedy) were too sick to even show up to cast a vote. That's why the Affordable Care Act needed two republicans to get to 60 votes.

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 2 years 23 weeks ago
#18

And, of course, it is now known that not only has all 3 branches of our government been guilty of collusion on behalf of the wealthy, according to whistleblower Sibel Edmonds et al, and against the majority of it's citizens...but also the major banks have been colluding, according to Matt Taibi "Wall Street Bribes, Bid-rigging and Collusion within the Municipal Finance Markets" from Rolling Stone magazine et al, for at least the last 15 years on setting the Libor rate. There is no real capitalism or free market as the right wing likes to hype. There is no real competition. It is all rigged and we are all the losers in this historically unprecedented corrupt system of smoke and mirrors, marketing hype, engineered beliefs, and clap trap. What we have here...is Organized Crime on a massive scale...and many of the tentacles of that organized criminal empire runs through both major political parties.

Even the one political party that tries to convince us that they represent "the people", the Democrat Party, is corrupt to the core. Both parties are owned and controlled by the ruling elite. The Democrat Party panders false hopes so that the people don't react appropriately to the really horrible things that awaits them. In effect, we are being exterminated...depopulated...and this is their plan, I suspect.

We need to massively boycott businesses in the US. Don't tell me that "Oh, but that will mean even fewer jobs"...that's the same old worn-out saw that they use to frighten us from merely going to the polls every four years to elect yet another fake and to keep us from actively rebelling against them in any meaningful way. And besides, that argument flies in the face of all those other actions the ruling elite has been carrying out...like shipping our jobs overseas. They don't care a whit about jobs in the US...yet they use that argument to keep us frightened to do anything really meaningful that would make a difference. Repeating the same old failures of the past will never change anything for our good. It will only keep us bogged down and sinking into the mires and fens of a corrupted democracy. It is their way of dividing and conquering. And a massive boycott is only the beginning...people need to take to the streets en masse like Occupy Wall Street but bigger and more numerous.

Global's picture
Global 2 years 23 weeks ago
#19

No republican voted for the ACA. It was a total partisan ram it down your throat 2700 page take your medicine,pass it to find out what's in it snow job. It is not a tax I promise it is not a tax.

The Death of the Middle Class was by Design...

Even in the face of the so-called Recovery, poverty and inequality are getting worse in our country, and more wealth and power is flowing straight to the top. According to Paul Buchheit over at Alternet, this is the end result of winner-take-all capitalism, and this destruction of the working class has all been by design.

From Screwed:
"I think many of us recognize that for all but the wealthiest, life in America is getting increasingly hard. Screwed explores why, showing how this is no accidental process, but rather the product of conscious political choices, choices we can change with enough courage and commitment. Like all of Thom’s great work, it helps show us the way forward."
Paul Loeb, author of Soul of a Citizen and The Impossible Will Take a Little While
From Unequal Protection, 2nd Edition:
"Hartmann combines a remarkable piece of historical research with a brilliant literary style to tell the grand story of corporate corruption and its consequences for society with the force and readability of a great novel."
David C. Korten, author of When Corporations Rule the World and Agenda for A New Economy
From Cracking the Code:
"No one communicates more thoughtfully or effectively on the radio airwaves than Thom Hartmann. He gets inside the arguments and helps people to think them through—to understand how to respond when they’re talking about public issues with coworkers, neighbors, and friends. This book explores some of the key perspectives behind his approach, teaching us not just how to find the facts, but to talk about what they mean in a way that people will hear."
Paul Loeb, author of Soul of a Citizen