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paiktis
01-02-2013, 21:15:07
http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2012/may/16/greece-must-remain-in-eurozone

after some exchanges, a little bit of honey :D

(I dont agree with about 80% but that got that journalsit the european journalist award for 2012. it's obvious why kind of giving your favorite pet/friend whatever a cookie but since pluralism is a virtue, i post it)

Poison Arrow Frog
02-02-2013, 06:22:59
I personally think Greece's best hope is to get booted out as it is clear they're not making the structural reforms they need to revive their economy. So now the question is will the Germans just keep giving the Greeks more and more money until they go bust or should the Greeks be shown tough love.

Dyl Ulenspiegel
02-02-2013, 08:08:26
2012 saw some improvement. As for "structural reforms", what exactly? Usually the term is used by lobby groups for "reforms that fill our pockets".

Poison Arrow Frog
02-02-2013, 23:45:49
For instance requiring something like two weeks just to get a new phone line or the massive amount of regulation which makes it damn near impossible to even register (much less get permits for) new businesses. Then there is the facts that something like 80% of the population are tax cheats because Greeks have a culture of being tax cheats, an excessive involvement of state owned companies in the economy which mostly lose money and discourage private companies from investing, excessively high minimum wages compared to the lowest in the EU productivity of Greek workers making it unprofitable to hire Greeks, or maybe the fact that the government hires an absurd percentage of the population. Sure, those government workers don't get paid much but neither do they do much of anything useful so effectively they just get paid to read the newspaper all day and dream up new unnecessary procedures designed to some how justify their continued employment even if it is to just pass the same piece of paper back and forth between them all day while accomplishing nothing.

In short, they need a massive reduction of government, deregulation, and the resulting efficiency gains which will be made as a result of it.

paiktis
03-02-2013, 00:17:40
well some of it it's true, some of it it's not, at least according to my impression.
For example, and if im not mistaken, greece has the same amount of public workers as belgium and they have the same population.

ABout the burocracy - functioning of the public state system, you are absolotely right and i bet a greek person told you because the description is spot on.

for the tax evasion, its really simple. just look at the percentage of people on regular salaries. These are near impossible to tax evade and I think they are a significant amount.
Free business (self owned businesses) tax evade like they breath.
Also... huge businesses tax evade, depend almost entirely on the state to get state projects with the blessings of the politicians. Its a hugely corrupt system that german companies (and others) took FULL advantage of.

And there are many more other things, it is a very broad discussion.

However and just to play devils advocate, why would you say that these things would be ameliorated if greece got booted out from the euro (something that there's no legal way of doing) ?

these things imho would continue to exist. It's sad that the euro did not make them go away but EU membership overall did wonders for greece (thats the truth).

(I dont want to open a new discussion but the EU itself is rather different now than what it was in the past. i was one of the most fervent advocates of the eu and not just because it gave "free money" but for the wider daring undertaking it was taking to secure a peaceful environment in europe which was the reason it was made. but i have to say that today's EU is smoething I dont recognize for a myriad of reasons unfortunately, altough the core idea is still there but burried under wrong after wrong policy in supra and national level)
I'll just add that the so called "golden armor" of the eu back in the 80s helped consolidate democracy in greece. and while at least I thought that was a done deal, I see that now with a 30% unemployment, large number of people living under poverty line and indeed a dog resistance by the established political status quo to change anything other than just cutting wages to inhumane levels, htat's not an economic crisis anymore. it's a crisis of democracy institutions. greece has gone so far to the conservative right it's unbelievable. (with an equal radicalization of the left) there are actual proponents of the dictatorship doing street matches, something that in the past would have been unthinkable.
imho if this crisis keeps another year or so with no amelioration whatsover you'll have either a fascist greece or a country in a semi official civil war. probably both.