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Thread: Greece's Tsipras calls referendum to break bailout deadlock

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    Re: Greece's Tsipras calls referendum to break bailout deadlock

    Quote Originally Posted by PoS View Post
    But unless Tsipras's party enacts major reforms (such as downsizing government spending and reforming tax collections to increase revenue) and so far it seems to have no intention of doing so, then this new government really is no better than the government it replaced.
    That's simply not true. That's exactly what they have proposed and exactly what the Troika have rejected. Tsipras proposed tax increases, extending pension age to 67 and cutting a number of government ministries, downsizing military and police spending and increasing staffing of departments that enforce anti-tax-avoidance measures. It's Troika propaganda to suggest that they are not doing everything humanly possible to address systemic problems.
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    Re: Greece's Tsipras calls referendum to break bailout deadlock

    Greek public debt has RISEN under the externally imposed austerity program from 120% to 180%, and the Troika are demanding even more of the same failed medicine.

    https://theconversation.com/now-the-...ght-move-43974
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    Re: Greece's Tsipras calls referendum to break bailout deadlock

    It appears they have a point about the legality of the debt and restructuring plan taken on by previous governments too...

    " As Greece and its international creditors race to agree on a bailout deal, the issue of the legality of Greek debt has been raised. The Greek parliament’s Truth Commission on Public Debt has released a report that rejects the legitimacy of the large sovereign debt restructuring. It alleges that a substantial part of the country’s €320 billion debt is illegal and “odious”.

    The Truth Commission was set up by the Greek parliament in April 2015 with a mandate to audit the legitimacy of the Greek debt in light of Greek, EU and international law. The report concludes that Greek foreign debt should not be legally enforceable. As yet, it has no legal standing, but may well fuel Greece’s objections to its bailout plan in the weeks to come. ... "

    " ...“Odious” originates in a highly regarded international law theory coined by Alexander Nahum Sack. The idea proclaims that public debt contracted against democratic principles by a regime for purposes other than the best interests of the nation, should not be enforceable. This is the case of colonial debts or debts incurred during a dictatorship. It refers to the legitimacy of the debt, which is lacking among those who dealt out the loans in the first place.... "

    https://theconversation.com/explaine...-illegal-43650
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    Re: Greece's Tsipras calls referendum to break bailout deadlock

    Quote Originally Posted by Andalublue View Post
    It's rather ironic that the use of a referendum on a single, albeit major, issue is being portrayed as a lack of leadership when everyone on the right has been applauding the UK Tories' EU-exit referendum plans, the consequences of which are considerably more complicated, difficult to explain and debate than the Greek government's negotiating position. That's a red herring if ever I saw one!
    There's a big difference between a party's holding a referendum on an issue when there is time for clear, reasoned-debate, and one's calling a referendum when a crisis is unfolding to evade making tough decisions. The Greek Prime Minister took the latter course.

    Not surprisingly, the Greek people have not gained any confidence in the wake of Prime Minister Tsipras' abdication of leadership responsibility. Instead, he appears to have touched off an all-out bank run. From Bloomberg.com:

    Two senior Greek retail bank executives said as many as 500 of the country’s more than 7,000 ATMs had ran out of cash as of Saturday morning, and that some lenders may not be able open on Monday unless there was an emergency liquidity injection from the Bank of Greece. A central bank spokesman said it was making efforts to supply money to the system.

    “I’m here to take my mother’s pension out before the machine runs out of cash,” said Erato Spyropoulou, who was standing in a line of about eight people at one of National Bank of Greece SA’s ATMs. “It’s very worrying what’s happening because people don’t know what they’re being asked to vote for. It’s the last nail on Greece’s coffin.”


    Greeks Line Up at Banks and Drain ATMs After Tsipras Calls Vote - Bloomberg Business

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    Re: Greece's Tsipras calls referendum to break bailout deadlock

    For what it's worth, here is where things stood:

    http://online.wsj.com/public/resourc...62415Greek.pdf

    One big issue was pension reform (see p.3). Its early retirement concept was based on disincentives and a phase-in by 2022. However, it was not clear that the proposal was near universal. There was troubling language concerning an exemption for "other special categories" which was undefined and rejected by the EU/ECB/IMF. The creditors accepted the proposal that those in "arduous professions" and mothers with disabled children could retire early as was appropriate.

    What were those "other special categories?" No definition was given. No number of persons was introduced. Was Greece really proposing to reduce early retirement for only a small fraction of its workforce? The actual extent of what Greece was providing was not known and not knowable from the language of the Greek proposal.

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    Re: Greece's Tsipras calls referendum to break bailout deadlock

    Quote Originally Posted by donsutherland1 View Post
    There's a big difference between a party's holding a referendum on an issue when there is time for clear, reasoned-debate, and one's calling a referendum when a crisis is unfolding to evade making tough decisions. The Greek Prime Minister took the latter course.
    That's not at all what he's doing. What he's doing is to show the Troika, and the world in general, that the Greek government's position is precisely the reflection of the will of the Greek nation. He's already drawn very stiff opposition to the extent to which he has compromised towards the Troika's position. Were he to agree to their entire position then he might well have to resign, which would have the same effect as defaulting, since there would be a period of leaderless government until a new election could take place.

    The Troika knows this, but they are playing a largely political game. They want Syriza out of government, they'd prefer a right-wing government that will apply austerity in the way that they dictate.

    Not surprisingly, the Greek people have not gained any confidence in the wake of Prime Minister Tsipras' abdication of leadership responsibility. Instead, he appears to have touched off an all-out bank run.
    It's not the government's position that's causing the run on the banks; it's the threats from the Troika that are doing that.
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    Re: Greece's Tsipras calls referendum to break bailout deadlock

    Quote Originally Posted by donsutherland1 View Post
    For what it's worth, here is where things stood:

    http://online.wsj.com/public/resourc...62415Greek.pdf

    One big issue was pension reform (see p.3). Its early retirement concept was based on disincentives and a phase-in by 2022. However, it was not clear that the proposal was near universal. There was troubling language concerning an exemption for "other special categories" which was undefined and rejected by the EU/ECB/IMF. The creditors accepted the proposal that those in "arduous professions" and mothers with disabled children could retire early as was appropriate.

    What were those "other special categories?" No definition was given. No number of persons was introduced. Was Greece really proposing to reduce early retirement for only a small fraction of its workforce? The actual extent of what Greece was providing was not known and not knowable from the language of the Greek proposal.
    No. You'd only draw that conclusion if you had a political agenda to refuse any condition that you didn't come up with. I don't believe there was any package of proposals that the Greeks could come up with that the Troika would have accepted. They've decided some time ago that Grexit is their preferred option.
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    Re: Greece's Tsipras calls referendum to break bailout deadlock

    Quote Originally Posted by Fenton View Post
    What a intensely cowardice thing to do.

    He's leaving it up to the Greek people so he doesn't have to take responsibility when this blows up in his face.

    He can tell the Greek people " hey guys, dont look at me, this is what you voted for ".

    Unbelievable.
    I have to disagree with you on this.

    I see nothing wrong with letting the people decide their fate.

    Sure, it maybe cowardly, but almost all politicians are cowardly...so nothing new there.

    I think there should ALWAYS be a referendum for major national decisions...no matter what the politicians intentions really are.
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    Re: Greece's Tsipras calls referendum to break bailout deadlock

    If I was him I would demand Germany pay reparations for World War II. Problem solved.

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    Re: Greece's Tsipras calls referendum to break bailout deadlock

    Quote Originally Posted by Andalublue View Post
    No. You'd only draw that conclusion if you had a political agenda to refuse any condition that you didn't come up with. I don't believe there was any package of proposals that the Greeks could come up with that the Troika would have accepted. They've decided some time ago that Grexit is their preferred option.
    Why did the Greek Government propose exempting "other special categories" and not define them? There's reasonable understanding what constitutes "arduous professions" and the population of mothers with disabled children. One can estimate the impact of pension reforms from exempting those two groups, which is reasonable. But one can't estimate the impact from an undefined "other special categories." That was a key pension-related sticking point that the creditors rejected. A mature Greek leader would have then countered with specificity and then the parties would be able to evaluate the pension reform proposal. No such specificity was forthcoming. Days later, the Greek leadership would punt to try to evade its responsibilities.

    If anything, Grexit might well be the Tsipiras' government's preferred option. It made unsustainable campaign promises. It tried to extort reparations from Germany. It vilified the IMF, which is the party who has gone farthest on debt relief e.g., restructuring.

    It has now punted at the moment where decision is needed. It has shown little regard that the consequences of its punt could be effectively the same as if it had rejected the EU/ECB/IMF proposal.

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