European Union and Historic Greece:
The Current Debt Crisis
Dr. Ioannis N. Kallianiotis
The Arthur J. Kania School of Management
University of Scranton
Scranton, PA 18510-4602
Tel. (570) 941-7577
Fax (570) 941-4825
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European Union and Historic Greece:
The Current Debt Crisis
This work gives a swift historical background and discusses the Greek economy since 1974, before and after her integration with the European Union and some of the problems that the current global financial and European debt crises have created, mostly to Greek and to all European citizens. The most severe problems are the social chaos, which is increasing every day, due to the current financial crisis and the worst recession since the great famine and depression of 1940s, the economic and political corruption, which are underrated by the officials, and the tremendous uncertainty that this artificial and controlled “creature” (the Economic and Monetary Union) has caused to its member-nations and their citizens. Europe has a seven thousand years old history, which comes from ancient Greek civilization and is complemented by Christianity. Greece experienced many difficulties, conflicts, and invasions by barbarians and other neighboring countries, which had and continue to have tremendous negative effects on her economy by trying to borrow and finance all these wars. But at the same time, many good periods with tremendous contributions to the global scene are recorded. Even though that Greece started the war of independence from Turks in 1821, major parts of the country are still under occupation. These wars continued during the 19th and 20th century and she participated in the two world wars and after WW II, she fought another five years war against communists until 1949. After that time the nation and citizens enjoyed a huge growth, a stable development, a multiple improvement, and a preservation of their traditional social values. Lately, the European integration has destroyed the sovereign nation-states and it is ruling undemocratically an entire continent and Greece, as a member of the EU and EMU. As has been seen, European Union’s economic and social policies cannot satisfy any welfare functions for the Europeans, like justice, fairness, allocation, equity, stability, distribution, efficiency, full employment, homogeneity, security, sovereignty, independence, self-sufficiency, certainty, and democracy. Instead of help, EU has lowered Greece’s indigenous cultures to a uniform sub-culture of waste, dependency, and apostasy. Unfortunately, if this union will not learn from its thousands years old European history and will not respect its Hellenic-Christian civilization, it would be better for Europeans to be dismembered, because it will just play the role of the main experiment for the accelerated globalization and the prototype of the human enslavement, the destruction of the sovereign nation, and the falsification of the history for these misfortune Greeks and all naïve Europeans.
I. A SWIFT HISTORICAL JOURNEY
My intention in this paper is to provide an outline of the economic and political history lying behind Greece before and after her integration with the European Union (EU), a cost benefit analysis, her interdependence with EU, and the policy implications of her lost public policies and sovereignty. “Europe” and “European Union” is nowadays a very political word and we will try to see what they have in common. The answer is that Europe has been different things at different times and has caused similar problems all the times.1 The goal of the study is to present a swift historical journey of Greece and to analyze the severe changes that have taken place in this EU member-nation after the 1957 Common Market idea and the politics of 1992 integration. Of course, history now gets less attention among business people than it was once the case, and that makes current societies and their economies more vulnerable than in the past. Human beings are making history and most of the time, do so unconsciously. Hellenic history took its unique direction (with the Providence of God) because the country occupies an incomparable position and her people have a particular objective, which was to offer some possibilities to all humans to learn the truth and to become persons (perfect personalities). It is very hard to describe truthfully, and impossible to analyze the contribution of Greeks and their nation to European history.2 “The most important of them are to be found in ancient Greece, the world the Romans made, early Christianity, [the spiritual and godly Byzantine Empire], and the barbarian incursions into Western Europe in the closing of antiquity. Between them, they constituted the foundations of a future Europe.”3
In size, Europe is the smallest of the five major continents and it is expanded to the Aegean Sea, the Black Sea, the Caucasus Mountains, and the Ural Mountains. To the east of those borders, Asia starts and Europe ends. Greece is between the Ionian and Aegean Sea and the Libyan Sea in the south; from north is bordered with Albania, Skopje, Bulgaria, and Turkey (north-east). However, Europe is not a matter of numbers and geography, but a concept of civilization and history, which started in Greece more than seven thousand years ago and expended to the rest of Europe. Europe’s earliest Neolithic sides have been found in Greece, Chalkidiki (the cave of Petralona). By 5600 B.C., pottery was made and letters were written in the regions of North Greece (Macedonia: Chalkidiki and Kastoria).4 The areas around the Aegean are those, which gave the first civilization in Europe. The cattle appeared to have been domesticated by 6000 B.C. in Crete5 (Knossos) and on the island of Euboea (Ευβοια=ευ βοῦς),6 which took its name from its good cows, both of which are in Greece. Minos was famed for his ships and Crete was the first naval power.7 Later, this Minoan civilization ended and another emerged in Mycenae, which mobilized forces from many Greek cities and islands to siege Troy (1200 B.C.).8 The Hellenes came to use “Europe” (Εὐρώπη) as a name for their territory to the west of the Aegean as distinct from the older lands in Asia Minor.
The ancient Greek civilization is called the “classical” one; later the word “classical” became the source of standards by which subsequent achievements can be measured.9 “There is a quality of excellence about Ancient Greece that brooks few comparisons.”10 These peoples (Hellenes) shared the same language (in an oral and written literature) and they recognized a common heritage “Hellenes”, which they did not share with other men. They belonged, as they felt, to “Hellas”.11 The non-Greeks were “barbarians”. The sharpness, the clarity, and the nimbleness of spirit of the Ancient Greeks, together with their lively imagination, created a unique mean of expression, the Greek language (Helliniki glossa).12 The achievement and importance of Greece comprehended all sides of life. “The Greeks did more for future civilization than any of their predecessors.”13 All Europe drew interest on the “capital” Greece laid down, and through Europe the rest of the world has benefited from what Greek offered to human civilization. Alexander, the son of Philip, is one of those historical Greek figures called “Great”. He was a passionate Hellene,14 who believed Achilles15 was his ancestor and carried with him on his campaigns a treasured copy of Homer. He had been tutored by Aristotle (a student of Socrates). Alexander the Great had a staggering record of success, even though that he died at the age of 33 years old. The history of Europe is the history of the Western civilization (a Greek-Christian civilization).16 Indisputable, Roman civilization was descended from the earliest Greek (Hellenic) civilization.17 Today, Europe has changed drastically because of so many influences by different mostly, Muslim sub-cultures. “European, or Western, civilization originated from the fusion of German (barbarian) culture and Roman (Hellenic-Christian) civilization during the Dark Ages from the 5th to the 10th century A.D.”18 Of course, history repeats itself. There were even monetary and economic unions in Ancient Greece, i.e., “the Common of Euboeans”, in 2nd century B.C.,19 where they issued a common currency, but they did not last for very long time because of the oppression on their weak member-states, like Karystos, Eretria, etc.
From the ancient times, Greeks and later other Europeans were expansionists (some aggressive),20 conquering, colonizing, trading, proselytizing (except the Orthodox), and spreading their cultures. Initially this cultural expansion to the West, with the colonies, owed much to the moral and ethical ancient Greek culture and later was complemented with the Christian faith (the Revealed Truth).21 St. Constantine the Great (324-340 A.D.) changed the world history more than any other emperor. He founded Christian Europe and he continues to protect it. Also, he was the founder of the Byzantine Empire. This Christianization gave to the European world a unity and cultural cohesiveness that was the ideological foundation of its civilization. Unfortunately, during the 9th century, barbarians from the West (Francs) occupied Rome and imposed their own “innovations” on this homogeneous Hellenic-Christian civilization. The schism between West and East (Byzantium) actually started during that period22 and Europe will never recover spiritually. Today, we try, in vain, to unite Europe by imposing the EU and the EMU on its sovereign nations.
In the 14th century, Europe descended into an era of crisis and contraction (occupation) that lasted more than one hundred years and about 400 years for the Balkans. An increasing materialism started and a decreasing spirituality of the Roman Catholic Church, even the “pope himself for a time became a tool of the French king”23 and the Great Schism between Rome and Constantinople, which took place in 1054 A.D., contributed to the isolation of the Latin church from its other sister churches, the Orthodox Patriarchates of the East.24 Then, national monarchies started emerging and a new wave of economic expansion and revitalization of European intellectual life began. Commerce and industry expanded in 15th and 16th century, gold and silver poured into Europe from the New World, prices rose, and a worldwide pattern of trade with Europe was going on. Furthermore, in the 14th century, this intellectual and artistic revival of the Renaissance started in Italy from the Greeks, who had been expelled from Constantinople and the rest of the Byzantium, and spread to northern Europe in the 15th and 16th centuries. It was a revival of classical learning and an artistic flowering without parallel in history. During that period, this confidence of the Western world [the South-Eastern part of Europe was occupied by the barbaric Mongolians (the Muslim Seljuk Turks)] found new outlets beyond the frontiers of Europe. Navigators journeyed the world. Their discoveries, followed unfortunately, by colonization and exploitation, reached the Americas, Africa, Asia, and Australia.
Lastly, this unified Roman Catholic Christian faith of Western Europe was challenged by Martin Luther in 1517 A.D. and Orthodox Churches were expected him to come back to Orthodoxy, but a new dogma, the Protestant Reformation soon became a revolt against the papal ecclesiastical authority, producing theological variety and denominational atomism and ultimately, assuming the triumph of secularism. The East part of Europe stayed firm to its Traditional Orthodox Christian Faith and even though that the Balkans were under occupation from the Muslim barbarians of the East, they survived, due to their strong faith and “secret schools” (kryfa scholeia) from the Orthodox Church and Monasteries.25 The net gain of the age of the Reformation went to the rulers of the emerging nation-states, whether Protestant or Catholic, who were already fashioning the absolutism that would dominate the European world from the middle of the 17th to the end of the 18th century. A revolution in science and economics (capitalism and socialism) started and still exists today (transforming to the homicide globalization). Crises also started from the 17th century, like destructive wars, compounded of religious motives and dynastic ambitions, filled most of the period and brought in civil commotions, revolutions, and two international wars in the 20th century. According to all historians, “The Greeks are the only people in history who have made four major contributions to human culture and civilization (the spring of Minoan Crete, the summer of fifth-century Athens, the golden autumn of the Alexandrian Empire, and the wintry splendour of Byzantium), have so competitive a spirit that they cannot tolerate for long the exceptional brilliance of one man.”26 The 20th century is also the period of the creation of the European Union. We hope and wish that this Union will not cause the end of the European identity and history before the end of the 21st century. Unfortunately, “contemporary history is vulnerable to all sorts of political pressure”,27 but we are responsible to write the Truth, which is the duty of men of letters. “Europe” is a relatively modern idea of the earlier concept of “Christendom” because the entire continent was Christian and its citizens had a common Christian identity.28
II. FROM THE OLD EUROPEAN SOVEREIGN NATIONS
TO THE TREATY OF ROME
On March 25, 1821, the revolution against Turkish rule broke out in Greece. Brutal fighting continued for several years between the unarmed Greeks and the barbarian conquerors, where Greece showed many heroes and martyrs to this just cause for her liberation. Unfortunately, by 1825, the Turks had almost crushed the revolt. In Western Europe, sympathy for the Greeks (from the Philhellenes, like Lord Byron)29 mounted, in large part because of a sentimental regard for the contribution of the ancient Greeks to the development of Western civilization.30 Unfortunately for Greece, the Ancient Greek treasures have been looted by the European invaders (crusaders) and during the period of Greece’s occupation by Turks. An example is the “Elgin Marbles”31 and many other antiquities that “adorn” the foreign museums and testify the character of these nations. Great Britain, France, and Russia agreed in the Treaty of London of 1827 to demand that the Ottoman Empire recognize Greek independence and to use force, if necessary, to end the fighting. After the liberation of Greece (only a small part of her territory because the 2/3 of the country are still under occupation), the first governor was Ioannis Kapodistrias (1776-1831), from January 1828 to September 27, 1831, who was assassinated by a British conspiracy because he wanted the new nation to be independent from Western protectors and to be an Orthodox state in her faith.32 Under the terms of the Treaty of Adrianople (1829), the Danubian provinces gained autonomy, as did Serbia, and only Greece (Eastern Thrace, Eastern Rumelia,33 Constantinople, Asia Minor, and Northern Cyprus) is even today under Turkish occupation. The Turks agreed to permit Russia, France, and Great Britain to determine the future of Greece. In the Treaty of London (1830), the three powers recognized Greek Independence. In 1832, Otto (1832-1862), the son of the king of Bavaria, was chosen as king of Greece, who caused serious problems to the new country, due to his heterodox beliefs.
Greece was involved in the Second World War, which was truly a global conflict. During the first years, from 1939 the Axis powers (Germany, Italy, and Japan) won a series of impressive victories in Europe, North Africa, Asia, and the Pacific. Then, the tide began to turn as the Allies, led by the United States, Great Britain, and the Soviet Union, pushed forward to victory. In 1944, the western Allies launched the invasion of Normandy and in 1945, Roosevelt, Churchill, and Stalin met at Yalta in the Soviet Crimea in the most important of the wartime conferences. This Second World War had far-reaching consequences. In Europe, the defeat of Germany created a power vacuum in Central Europe that made possible a great westward expansion of Soviet power. The growth of Soviet power, in turn, evoked an American response. The result was the dreadful Cold War, which tortured the world for 40 years.34 In Asia, the defeat of Japan led to an increase of American influence, power, and responsibility in the western Pacific and East Asia. Throughout Asia, and in Africa, as well, the war helped intensify nationalist movements, thereby hastening the disintegration of Europe’s empires. Also, the World War II brought many technological developments, especially the destructive atomic bomb, which presented future generations with the specter of mass annihilation.35
During World War II, the Allies held a series of conferences, where they discussed military operations and their plans for the postwar world.36 But, World War II was by far the most massive and destructive of all wars in History. It was a war on land, in the air, and at sea. New weapons, both offensive and defensive, ranging from radar to rocket bombs, jet-propelled aircraft, and the atomic bomb were its “scientific” instruments. At the end of the war, Europe lay prostrate, almost paralyzed. All belligerent countries except Britain and the Soviet Union had suffered military defeat and enemy occupation. Wartime casualties in Europe have been estimated at more than 15 million deaths (over 6 million soldiers and more than 8 million civilians). Military and civilian casualties in the Soviet Union may have added another 10 million deaths, total casualties, then, over 25 million people.37 The economy came to a near standstill. Warfare destroyed or damaged railroads, highways, bridges, and port facilities, gutted buildings and factories, collapsed and flooded mines, and leveled cities. Also, the currencies of all countries had been greatly over issued, resulting in rampant, but uneven price inflation and hyperinflation. Millions faced the threat of death from starvation, diseases, and the lack of adequate clothing and shelter immediately after the war.
The failure of the League of Nations to prevent World War II disillusioned many persons who had expected much from international organization and cooperation. On April 25, 1945, in a conference including representatives of fifty-one nations convened in San Francisco and drafted a charter for the permanent structure of the United Nations.38 In June 1947, George C. Marshall (1880-1959), the American Secretary of State, proposed a broad program of American assistance to help all of Europe recover economically. In July 1947, in response to Secretary of State Marshall’s invitation, representatives of sixteen European nations met in Paris to draw up a joint request to the United States for financial aid to assist in their economic recovery. In April of 1948, the U.S. Congress passed the Foreign Assistance Act, establishing the European Recovery Program or “Marshall Plan”, and authorized an initial sum of $5.3 billion to be distributed as loans and grants by the newly created Economic Cooperation Administration (ECA). The recipient nations formed the Organization for European Economic Cooperation (OEEC) to administer the aid in Europe and pledged themselves to a long-term program of mutual assistance and cooperation.
A number of structural changes made a deep impression on social attitudes. The “Welfare State”, which provided a wide range of services such as Britain’s National Health Service (1948), West Germany’s model pension scheme, or France’s massive HLM projects for cheap housing, removed many of the traditional anxieties about ill health, unemployment, homelessness, and old age. Ioannis Metaxas introduced many of these social programs to Greece, too. Rising wages turned the masses into “consumers”, pressured to become big spenders by aggressive advertising, social emulation, and lines of credit by banks. Consumerism certainty fuelled our market oriented capitalistic system, but it turned material advancement into the only goal, not the means to advance personally and spiritually. It threatened to reduce politics to a debate about the economy and nothing else. It taught young people that possessions alone brought fulfillment. Since it put a dazzling supply of desirable, but unnecessary goods before peoples’ eyes, they buy them without even paying for them, they just sign their names (credit cards). This secularism came to Greece after 1970s by diluting the traditional Hellenic educational system.
Another problem was the immorality, the “sexual revolution”, the family planning, the disrespect towards the elders, parents, and teachers, and the undermining of all the values of the 1960s, which led us to today’s crises in all aspects of our life. In a few years all conventional mores were destroyed and our young people have serious psychological problems today. It eliminated the social shame of extramarital relationships, children borne without knowing their father, other keeled by their parents before their birth, homosexuality, divorce, unmarried cohabitations, and numerous other perversions. In most countries it was accompanied by the liberal laws on obscenity, on toleration, on “liberty”, on “democracy”, on “human rights”, on abortion, and many others.39 The church and the conservatives, after their marginalization, have no voice any more; liberals, socialists, globalists, psychologists, and pseudo-scientists know everything and they are the decision makers. Of course, what they hate most are the fundamental values of Faith, Country, Family, marriage, education, tradition, and all the other virtues that led humanity for thousands of years. For the first time, Christianity in Europe has become a minority belief and with its ecumenism40 and globalization will lose its purpose and this virus is affecting Greece, too. Different denominations, heterodox, and allodox can not be united because what will come out from this mixture will be a New Babylon, as politicians have already dreamed it and are working for its creation.41
In summary, the two world wars of the 20th century, with their accompanying horrors, show the weaknesses, the poverty, and the malice of our leaders, who have accepted some inferior philosophies of heresies42 and try to impose them on peoples and sovereign nations through integrations and globalization. All these will fail because above their actions is a Divine Providence, who guides humanity. These pseudo-leaders did and unfortunately continue to do, much to undermine the faith, the hope, and the progress of Greeks and all Europeans. Furthermore, while advances in science, increases in material wealth and goods, and progresses in technology greatly improved the material quality of life, they also increased the uncertainties, the unhappiness, and the threats confronting humanity and they become worse day after day. As a consequence of these experiences of the 20th and the new 21st century, people and especially young are completely disoriented, without traditional values, misinformed, and without true models. Of course, every individual must be optimistic and work hard to become a true person, independently of what the rest of the world is doing. The same must hold for Greece, as a sovereign nation, it must work hard by using its recourses, its civilization, and its peoples to reach the highest welfare, according to its value system and independently from this forced integration of Europe.
Further, following World War II, the idea of economic integration was promoted in Western Europe. Who were these people and what was their ultimate objective of this experiment were unknown.43 The world is waiting to see the conclusion of this union of nations, peoples, cultures, dogmas, histories, economies, politics, and civilization. The majority of Europeans are very skeptical and anxious for the future of their continent and of their nations. In 1950, Jean Monnet (1888-1979) convinced Premier Robert Schuman (1886-1963) to support a plan for the integration of the coal and steel industries of France and West Germany. Negotiations on the Schuman Plan led to the establishment in 1951 of the European Coal and Steel Community (ECSC). The ECSC included France, West Germany, Italy, Belgium, the Netherlands, and Luxembourg. The success of the ECSC helped advance an even bolder proposal developed by Monnet. In 1957,44 the six members of the ECSC signed the Treaty of Rome establishing the European Economic Community (EEC), known as the Common Market. The members of this Common Market committed themselves to eliminate trade barriers and to promote free movement of capital and labor.
Proposals for some kind of supranational organization in Europe have become increasingly frequent since 1945 and have been issued from ever more influential and suspicious sources. The proposals spring from unidentified and strange motives and they do not want to make these public because they are afraid of citizens’ reactions. What they maintain as motives for the public is political and economic. The political motive, manifested somewhat tenuously in the Council of Europe, is rooted in the belief that only through supranational organization can the threat of war between European powers be permanently eradicated. Some proponents of European political unity further believe that the compact nation-state of the past is now outmoded (sic); if the nations of Europe are to resume their role in world affairs, they must be able to speak with one voice and have at their command resources and manpower comparable with those of superpowers.45
The economic motive rests upon the argument that larger markets will promote greater specialization and increased competition, thus higher productivity and standards of living. But, countries have different value systems and work ethics and they cannot be equalized. Unfortunately, nothing of these has happened. So far the cost of integration has exceeded the benefits for the Europeans. Citizens have lost their jobs, due to competition from the other country-members. Prices have increased because of the common market, goods are moving to markets with higher income and to attract them you have to pay the same high prices. Salaries are completely different among the members. Finally, illegal immigrants,46 drug dealers, terrorists,47 international mafia, every corrupted person, and every kind of criminality move freely from one nation to the other because borders have been abolished.
The Common Market treaty took effect on January 1, 1958 and on July 1, 1968, all tariffs between member nations were completely eliminated, several years earlier than the date originally foreseen. In 1961, Britain signified its willingness to enter the Common Market if certain conditions could be met, but in January 1963, president de Gaulle of France in effect vetoed Britain’s membership, an action he repeated in 1967 and 1969. The accession of Britain, Ireland, and Denmark took effect on January 1, 1973. Unfortunately, Greece acceded to the Community on January 1, 1981, without a referendum; Spain and Portugal on January 1, 1986. On January 1, 1995, the EU-12 became EU-15, with the accession of Austria, Finland, and Sweden.48 On May 1, 2004 ten new members joined the Union: Poland, Hungary, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Slovenia, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Cyprus, and Malta. Lately, on January 1, 2007, Romania and Bulgaria became EU members, reaching the implausible number of EU-27 (more than 500 million people).
III. POLICY IMPLICATIONS AND RESPONSES TO THE CRISIS
Greece had major changes in 1974 with the planned Turkish invasion in Cyprus49 and the restoration of some controlled (anti-Greek and anti-Orthodox) politicians back in power after seven years (the period of the military government). This year was the landmark of the country’s downfall and her intended destruction by the dark powers, with the help of these imposed pseudo-politicians.50 At that time the national debt was close to zero, the economy was growing, and the country was enjoying her unique culture and indigenous value system in a homogeneous (98% Greek-Orthodox) social, humane, independent, and free environment.
These pseudo-leaders, keeping the orders of their supporters, became the wooden horse of destroying the country from within and they succeeded in this plan. They started with diligence to undermine the foundations of the Greek society, language, history, education, Orthodox faith, traditions, indigenous value system, and every thing else that had made this civilization unique on earth for seven thousand years. Then, they forced Greece to joint the European Union, which was her complete destruction (her mortal stroke) and we see the infinite cost of this decision, today. From these days, they were generating the current financial (debt) and general crises on all aspects of life for the country. Later, another posted prime minister (Kostas Semitis) put Greece to the Economic and Monetary Union, by abandoning her three thousand years old currency (the historic drachma).
Today, with all these corrupted people in power for 37 years, Greece is facing a serious sovereign debt crisis and is losing completely her sovereignty and freedom. It is controlled by the forerunners of the global government (Troika: EU, ECB, and IMF). Greece accumulated high levels of debt (due to wastes, frauds, steeling, and every kind of corruption) to satisfy the foreign leaders who support the Greek pseudo-leaders to appropriate the power of government in Greece. During these periods, the market was very liquid, the EU was offering subsidies to avoid the opposition from the European citizens, who were all against the European integration, and the economy was artificially growing. Greece was borrowing and was rolling over her maturing debt obligations without any problem; and of course, a lot of these loans were spending to buy weapon and other military “goods” from Germany, France, England, and unfortunately, from the U.S., too. Then, the 2007 global financial crisis was created and Greece was forced by her “friends” (“markets”) to borrow at 17% and finally, they did not buy her government securities. Greece was unable to roll over its maturing debt obligations and was closed to default.
On April 23, 2010, Greece was forced to introduce a variety of austerity measures and then, the EU and ECB sent her to borrow €110 billion ($140 billion) short-term from IMF51 (as a non-European and under-developed country). There are many questions about the merits of the euro and the prospects for the future of the European integration (the prototype of globalization: one nation, one currency, one government). This common currency has created many problems to the countries, in which it has been imposed. These countries have a common monetary policy and diverse national fiscal policies. They do not have an independent trade policy and their fiscal policy also depends on their lenders rules. Between 2001, when euro was imposed on Greece as her currency, and 2008, Greece’s reported budget deficits averaged 5% per year, compared to a Euro-zone average of 2%, and current account deficits averaged 9% per year, compared to a Euro-zone average 1%. In 2009, the budget deficit was estimated to have been more than 13% of GDP.
Greece funded these twin deficits by borrowing in international capital markets, leaving her with a chronically high external debt (127% of GDP in 2009). The EU’s Stability and Growth Pact (Maastricht criteria) calls for budget deficit ceilings of 3% and national debt ceilings of 60% of GDP. Almost all the EMU members exceed these deficits ceiling, which is normal during periods of recessions because countries have to stimulate their economies and not to contract them, as Troika’s new economic theory is insisting on poor Greeks. This financial crisis in Fall 2008, led to a liquidity, confidence, spending, investment, tax revenues, borrowing, growth, and employment crises. A true vicious cycle!
In October 2009, the new “socialist” (PASOK) government, led by Prime Minister George Papandreou, absurdly revised the estimate of the government budget deficit for 2009, nearly doubling the existing estimate of 6.7% of GDP to 12.7% of GDP. Did they understand what they were doing or they came to ravage the national wealth and to abandon the country, when she will be in danger, as Kostas Karamanlis and his government did in 2009? This debt revision was fallowed by rating downgrades of Greek government bonds by the three major credit rating agencies (which are responsible for the recent global crisis, too). Thus, Greece, as a country with large external debts, became of particular concern for financial markets. Allegations that Greek governments had falsified statistics and attempted to obscure debt levels through complex financial instruments (with the help of Goldman Sachs) also contributed to a drop in investors’ confidence. Before the crisis, Greek 10-year bond yield were 10 to 40 basis points above German 10-year bonds. With the crisis, this spread went over 1,000 basis points.
At the end of March 2010, the Euro-zone member states pledged to provide financial assistance to Greece in concert with the IMF, if necessary and if requested by Greece’s government. In mid-April 2010, the details of the proposed financial assistance package for this year were released: a three-year loan worth €30 billion ($40 billion) at 5% interest rate (above what other Southern European countries borrow at, but below the rate currently charged by the market on Greek bonds).52 In April 2010, Eurostat released its estimate of Greece’s budget deficit of 13.6% of GDP. This led to renewed questions about Greece’s ability to repay her debts, with €8.5 billion ($11.1 billion) falling due in mid-May 2010. On April 23, 2010, the Greek government formally requested financial assistance from the IMF and other Euro-zone countries (without knowing that she signed her sentence towards her sovereignty). The European Commission (actually, Angela Merkel of Germany and Nicolas Sarkozy of France) requested that the details of Greece’s budget cuts for 2010, 2011, and 2012 be released before providing the financial assistance.
Between 2001 and 2007, Greece’s GDP grew at an average annual rate of 4.3% (this does not include a huge underground economy), compared to a Euro-zone average of 3.1%. These high economic growth rates were driven primarily by increases in private consumption (fueled by easier access to credit, European subsidies, and embezzlements of public wealth) and public investment, financed by the EU and the government. Over the past six years, while the government expenditures increased by 87%, revenues grew by only 31%, which led to budget deficits. Large and inefficient public administration in Greece (created by the parties in power to get the votes from these employees and their families), costly pension (some people were retiring at the age of 40 years old) and healthcare systems (because of the frauds, due to corruption), tax evasion, political immunity, and absence of any fiscal discipline, are the major factors behind Greece’s deficits.
According to the OECD, in 2009, Greek government expenditures accounted for 50% of GDP (over-staffing, poor productivity, and impediments to improve economic performance in the public sector). An aging Greek population (the birth rate has declined drastically because of the abandonment of the Greek value system, which was a family oriented one) with 19% of the population aged over 64 in 2007 and estimated that in 2060, it will reach 32%, could place additional burdens on public spending of the Greek pension system. The public pension system needs some immediate reforms, but gradual and not drastic (no reductions of the pensions). A very weak tax revenue collection (due to corruption; but, high levels of taxation to low income people, pensioners, and housing; high value-added taxes, complex tax code, excessive regulation, and inefficiency in the public sector) and social security contribution evasion, have contributed to the current debt crisis.53
Greek industry is suffering from abandonment by the government, from low productivity, and from declining of its competitiveness. Greek exports were declining and imports were growing very fast. Greek industry needs protection from the government because of the unfair competition that faces from the surrounding countries and China. In the past, tourism and the shipping industry have been the Greek economy’s stronger sectors; now, are suffering from the global recession. Greece’s adoption of the euro without a referendum in 2001 is seen as a contributing factor in Greece’s crisis. She has no monetary policy because it is pursued by the ECB and she has no trade policy because she cannot devaluate the common currency; but she has only to reduce cost of production (salaries and wages, which are relatively low compared with the other EMU members). During that period it was swinging the perception of stability and confidence, which increased borrowing and at a more favorable interest rate (access to artificially cheap credit) and the private and public debt was accumulated. If Greek politicians had taken some measures earlier, since 1980s, there would be no need for the current austerity measures and anti-social reforms.
These measures that the EU, the ECB, and the IMF have imposed on Greece, which are very high taxes and sharp spending cuts in the middle of a severe recession, will lead to higher unemployment and will deepen the ongoing recession in the country. Greece needs expansionary fiscal policies (government efficiency, increase tax revenue by crackdown on tax evasion, improve collection of social security contributions and VAT, but do not increase VAT on any product or tax on fuel or real estate tax for the first home, etc., punish and cut off any type of corruption, confiscation of all the money and real assets that some have stolen from the public, put these robbers of public wealth in prison, leave the same wages, salaries, and pensions, increase public investment, and use any possible stimulus for the economy; like, put only once a 10% tax to all the financial assets) during this cyclical economic downturn and not what the IMF and the EU are saying. They are absolutely wrong! The other gradual adjustments must take place after the recession and very slowly because they will affect negatively employment and social welfare. The Greek economy needs long-term structural reforms, reforms to the pension and health systems, and to the public administration (increase in efficiency and productivity). Also, it is needed the Greek economic competitiveness to be increased, the domestic agriculture and manufacturing to be protected, the private sector’s development to be increased, and the research, technology, and innovation to be supported.
The Greek government was forced to raise the average retirement age from 61 to 63 (the statutory retirement age is 65) and to calculate pensions on the basis of lifetime contributions as opposed to the last five years of earnings, as it is now and some pensioners are receiving pensions that exceed their salaries. Also, to tighten public regulations and strengthen accountability in the inefficient Greek health care system. Further, to restructure Greece’s public administration and reforming Local Administration once again. The previous reform-“destruction” of the local administration (“Ioannis Kapodistrias”) took place in 1998.54 The new reform-“dissolution of the nation” (“Kalikratis”) took place in 2010.55 The legal public entities formed by local authorities are reduced also from 6,000 to 2,000. This was the objective of the controlled by the dark powers Troika (EU, ECB, and IMF).
These contractionary fiscal policies will hinder economic growth; the data shown a deep recession for the 4th quarter of 2010 () and an unemployment rate very high (), which is expected to increase more in 2011. The unemployment for young people is about 30% and in some regions, the unemployment exceeds 40%. Greece has to use an expansionary fiscal policy; to attract new foreign investment (without selling off public properties and enterprises, especially now that the prices are so low; everything is undervalued in Greece), to boost exports, to increase trade, to do investments in energy and in renewable energy sectors (oil, gas, solar, aeolic, etc.), to improve transportation, to reduce tolls, ticket prices, and taxes on gasoline, to improve the shipping industry and the shipyards, and to improve tourism. Of course, the Greek voters have to dismiss all these corrupted politicians, who destroyed the country for 36 years.
It has been reported that Greek government (Kostas Semitis)56 used complex financial instruments, underwritten by Goldman Sachs and other “prominent” (corrupted and unregulated) financial institutions, to conceal the true level of Greece’s debt and to enter the EMU. The U.S. Federal Reserve investigated the role that Goldman Sachs and other U.S. financial institutions played in the building up of Greece’s debt, but we have not seen any results.57 The complex financial instruments that these unregulated investment banks had created, destroyed the global financial system, which affected not only Greece, EU, and the rest of the world, but affected negatively the U.S. economy, which has not yet recovered (its unemployment is still double digit).58 If there will be no regulations for these corrupted and anti-humane financial institutions, the next crisis will come in five years and at that time the economy that will be affected most will be not the European, but the U.S. one.59 George Papandreou criticized a little this current corrupted financial market by saying: “unprincipled speculators who are making billions every day by betting on a Greek default”.
Finally, in February 11, 2011, the Troika in Greece had a press conference and they insisted, without any shame, that Greece has to privatize her public enterprises and sale public real estate (wealth) to collect from this selling out €50 billion ($68 billion) that can be used against her debt. The audacity of these people has no limits. This shows that they feel that they are in control in Greece, which confirms that Greece is under occupation; she has lost her sovereignty. By selling this public wealth, Greece can buy back some of her debt. They realized indirectly that the severe austerity measures that they have imposed to Greece have not worked so far. They said also the amazing thing that “ancient monuments are excluded from sales”. IMF is imposing measures worse than the barbarian Turks during the 400 years of occupation. They intervene in Greece’s domestic affairs and they blamed the Greeks, who are striking, asking for their rights, that they have since the time of Pericles (5th century B.C.). They ask for major structural changes in the Greek economy, which will destroy the social web and cohesion of this unique and homogeneous historic nation. They ask Greece to open up the closed professions, which will affect negatively the Greek professionals because they cannot compete with the foreign multinational firms that are in these businesses. These sale offs of the national wealth is a crime against the nation and its citizens and Greeks have to say “NO”. The IMF is planning to be in Greece for 15 to 20 years.60
IV. SUMMARY AND CONCLUDING REMARKS
The economic and social indicators reveal that Greece from a moral, ethical, and just society, after 1974 and her European integration is becoming less and less competitive and more and more contaminated from all these foreign influences; and EU is becoming less friendly with its members (especially the small ones) and the rest of the world.61 European Union (the forced integration of 27 nations, without referenda) is the worst “innovation” in human history. It is a mixture of twenty seven nations without domestic public policies, without self-determination, without sovereignty, with huge European subsidies, that Greece has been unable to absorb, with enormous debts and deficits, and of course, without any future62 and with different present. All these strange evolutions coupled with the global financial crisis, have increase the global uncertainty, the European crisis, have caused unemployment and recessions in EU63 and in Greece, have reduced competitiveness, and have augment anxiety and health problems (mental and physical) to citizens. The free-market system has failed and needs more government regulation and better corporate governance. Governments had to bailout a corrupted financial system, especially when the budget deficits and the national debts are astronomical. But, it had no other option, except to “rob responsible [citizens] and pay the robbers of the financial market”.64 Then, what are the social benefits? Why we need these global changes and “evolutions”, which are against humanity? What are the social benefits of the European Union and the EMU?
The data and the “News” show that the uncertainty in Greece is tremendous and is growing. The Greek economy is losing competitiveness and the unemployment in the country is holding steadily (in some regions, it is 40%). The U.S. economy is doing better than the European, but the euro is doing much better than the dollar. Paradox! The current world is a big paradox, so we are not surprised any more. The introduction of the euro in 1999 is a mismatch between the EU’s advanced economic and monetary union and the poorer countries and at the same time, this is an incomplete political union. The Euro-zone has a single monetary policy, but 17 separate national fiscal policies. This unique arrangement is prone to problems and imbalances that threaten the viability of having a common currency for distinctive and completely different countries, like from Germany to Malta.65 The EU tries to create a European Monetary Fund (EMF), which will respond more smoothly to financial crises within individual member-states, operating like the IMF on a regional basis.66 Greece’s and the other Euro-zone’s nations crises have brought to light imbalances within the Euro-zone. Some Northern European and industrial countries, such as Germany, have relied on exports for economic growth and pursued policies that aim to promote such export-led growth (as wage moderation, keep cost of production low, increase competition, use of conservative fiscal policies, promote high levels of savings, and large current account surpluses). The Southern European and non-industrial countries, and especially, Greece, has relied on agriculture, tourism, and shipping, but the euro has negatively affected all these sectors (her products became expensive, due to an overvalued euro; as a more socially oriented nation, she has had higher levels of wage growth and more expansionary fiscal policies, leading to less competitive exports and lower levels of savings; have run large current account deficits; and another problem that she has is the high levels of corruption; for all these, she has to borrow to finance these deficits, the economic and the ethical one).
On the one hand, the heterogeneity of the EU is unique. Institution building is taking place in the absence of a strong legitimating myth or ideology or belief structures, etc. The process is an ad hoc one, leading to greater future problems. We hope to be some powerful sources of resistance to those oppressive institutions and their policies if they will act against individuals, as we saw lately, with the debt crises. EU is an extremely diverse mosaic of nations if someone studies the given diversity of historical experience, political, religious, and cultural cleavages across the entire Europe. The European polity is extremely fragmented, reflecting diverse member state interests and an institutional structure based on a complex distribution of power across the European Council, Commission, Court, Parliament, and the new Constitution; consequently, they could lead to conflicts and confrontations even with the United States, as it happened during the 2003 with the Iraqi invasion.
National sovereignty was formally indisputable and undisputed, and was even aggravated by the deeper involvement of both governments and public opinion in economic, social, educational, and political matters. Lately, national sovereignty is increasingly eroded by growing economic and political interdependence, huge loans (mortgaging of the public wealth) and lack of respect from the more powerful to the less ones. Such contradictions cannot and will not last for very long and the oppositions are observed every day, not only in EU, but all over the world, even though that our “democracies” are using special well trained police forces to suppress such voices and reactions and a very advanced high tech spying system. A necessary improvement and adjustment must be made in the system of international economic and political co-operation and to regulate the financial markets; otherwise there will be a severe deterioration of commercial, financial, political, cultural and other relations.
Finally, Greece’s current economic problems have been caused by a mix of domestic, European, and international factors. Domestically, ignorant leaders, government spending, over-consumption, low savings, huge borrowing, destruction of agriculture and manufacturing, abandonment of villages and country sides, non-use of domestic natural resources, tax evasion, corruption, and others have all contributed to Greece’s accumulation of debt over the past four decades. European factors, the European integration of different economies to create the EU, the imposition of euro, the lost of monetary policy, the controlled fiscal policy, the structural changes, and the lack of competition. Internationally, the globalization, the uncontrolled illegal immigrants,67 the latest financial crisis, and other objectives of the dark powers are also believed to have contributed to Greece’s current crisis (which is not only economic, but it is mostly social and spiritual). Even though that international economic co-operation is necessary, today than ever, it is more difficult to be achieved. As interdependence and complexity of the economies have increased, the existing instruments of co-operation have become less and less able to avoid or resolve the conflicts between countries’ different policies.
In the monetary field, there was a time when fixed exchange rates were universally accepted as the norm and the dollar as the international currency; both these key elements have been abandoned and nothing so far has taken their place.68 In the commercial field, the geographical area, which was significant for GATT (WTO, now) has grown wider than institutions’ geographical sphere of influence; in addition, Greece is almost powerless to deal with a number of trade conflicts concerning powerful countries. In the area of macro-policies, the west infrastructure represented by the common acceptance of the Keynesian paradigm as a basis for co-operative efforts has been lost and some new neo-liberal policy objectives, doctrines, ideologies, and self-interest have created enormous conflicts among nations. In the area of capital movements, a fully fledged, largely uncontrolled, extremely speculative international financial system has superseded segmented national markets and has increased bankruptcies, loss of properties (houses) and assets (which have been used as collateral), and loss of wealth (even public wealth of nations) and many other redistributions of wealth from low income and poor to richer people. In another important area, that of labor mobility, an uncontrolled, unregulated, satisfied political expediencies illegal migration69 has caused serious employment, safety, crime, security, and population balance problems. This illegal labor is the number one problem in EU and in Greece, right now. The last most important area is national security and international peace objective; there are no international institutions or international laws or international community, which can intervene and find a political, economic, and social solution to the current mounting problems. The governments and international organizations have lost control and powers outside them (multinational businesses, markets, “economic mafia”, etc.) are doing what ever they like to satisfy their ultimate goal (profit and global control) acting against the social well-being. Greece has to abandon the immunity law and put in jail these people who have stolen public money and to confiscate their property and other assets; to increase savings, reduce borrowings, improve tourism, shipping, agriculture, and production of energy. The glob has become a large risky jungle, but the benefits of EU and EMU are far away (insignificant) from the tremendous costs of this “prototype” of globalization. The best for Greece would be to abandon the EMU and the euro. Drachma, her history, and her civilization are the true values of the nations and not her dependence on some controlled anti-Greek European powers.
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1 See, Cameron (1997).
2 See, Kallianiotis (2011a).
3 See, Roberts (1997, p. 1).
4 See, http://logioshermes.blogspot.com/2011/02/7270.html
5 See, Roberts (1997, p. 12).
6 See, Kallianiotis (1995, p. 26).
7 Greece continues to have the largest maritime fleet in the world (18% with 3,079 vessels), today.
8 See, Homer, Iliad and Odyssey. Greeks are found in this land since those days.
9 With their wisdom, like: “Moderation in all things” (pan metron ariston) and many others, they set the foundations and advanced not only Europe, but the entire world.
10 See, Davies (1998, p. 95).
11 Ancient and current Hellenes had and continue to have the same blood, the same language, and the same religion (omaimon, omoglosson, kai omothriskon), according to Herodotus, 5th century B.C. See, Kallianiotis (2007e, p. 179). Also, from the cultural continuation of these people and lately, science has proved that modern Greeks have the same DNA as those 30,000 years ago! See, Modern and Ancient Greeks-Racial Connection, http://au.youtube.com/watch?v=eQpK2bbHRLA&feature=related
12 See, Voanerges, No. 41, January-February 2009, pp. 63-67. Dictionaries of European languages have 17-20% of their words, which are of Greek origin. The scientific terminology contains 50 80% of Greek words. Physi-cist Heisenberg, many Nobel laureates, Spanish members of the European parliament, the German professor of Philosophy Pleine, Carl Marx, Engels, Lenin, the French professor and academics Jaquelline de Romilly, to name a few, are those who have said that Greek is the only language that its use has improved science. (K. Marx and F. Engels, Apanta, Vol. 22, p. 544).
13 See, Roberts (1997, p. 43).
14 See, Roberts (1997, p. 47). Of course, the current Skopje’s propaganda is historically absolutely wrong, but there are some ignorant governments (“friends” of Greece), which have recognized Skopje as a nation with it usurper name “Macedonia”. This artificial Slavo-Albano-Bulgarian state can be called only with its historic name as Vardarska. See also, Kallianiotis (1992, pp. 58-59, 2010a, and 2011c).
15 See, Homer’s Iliad.
16 The European civilization was a Hellenic-Orthodox civilization up to the 9th century A.D., before its barbaric invasions from West and North. See, Sakarellos (2005).
17 See, Jones (1997), Kebric (1997), Vasiliev (1984), and Paparrigopoulos (2003).
18 See, Blum, Cameron, and Barnes (1970, p. 4).
19 See, Vranopoulos (1995, p. 168).
20 See, Cameron (1997).
21 “The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified [by Greeks].” (John 12: 23).
22 See, Sakarellos (2005).
23 See, Blum, Cameron, and Barns (1970, p. 5).
24 An example is the failure of the Synod in Ferrara and Florence (1438/1439). See, Stephanides (1990, pp. 390-396).
25 The offer of the Orthodox Church to the Hellenic civilization and to the preservation of the Greek race is unique in human history.
26 See, Bradford (1980, p. 55).
27 See, Davies (1998, p. 2).
28 See, Davies (1998, p. 7).
29 Byron died in Greece, where he had gone to help the Greeks fight for their independence in Messolonghi (1824) during the siege of this city. See, Viault (1990, p. 221).
30 Only, the Western Church was always against Greece because of the Great Schism that took place in 1054 and the relationship between the Orthodox and Latin Church continues to be the same today, due to the arrogance of the second one. See, Vasiliades (1993).
31 In 1799, the British Ambassador to the Ottoman Porte, Lord Elgin, visited Athens, Greece, and acquired the finest sections of the Parthenon Frieze. The most of the European and American museums have Greek treasures stolen from Greece and this smuggling of antiquities is continuing up to now. These treasures must be returned back to the countries, where they belong. See, Davies (1998, p. 741).
32 British characterized the case of “Kapodistrias” as “British History”. See, Kokkinakis (2007). Britain has caused and continues to cause serious problems to Greece from 1821 up to now with the Greek island of Cyprus. Also, they have robed completely Greece with the famous “loans from England” to finance the War of Independence and Greece is still paying them. Greece cannot recover from her continues indebtedness.
33 Eastern Rumelia was given to Bulgaria in 1886, even though that was set up as an autonomous province by the Treaty of Berlin in 1878.
34 After 1990, with the fall of communism, the cold war became a corporate espionage. One nation is stealing the technology from the other, especially China. See, D. Gauthier-Villars and S. Moffett, “Renault set to Surrender in L’ Affaire d’ Espionnage”, See, The Wall Street Journal, March 10, 2011, pp. A1 and A12.
35 See, Viault (1990, pp. 479-497).
36 See, Viault (1990, pp. 493-497).
37 See, Blum, Cameron, and Barnes (1970, p. 976). In proportion to population, Greece had the most casualties from all the European nations because after World War II a civil (communist) war against the country lasted until August 29, 1949, where communists were defeated. Greece has not received yet the indemnity from Germany.
38 Unfortunately, after 66 years of its existence, the U.N. has not succeeded in its objectives to preserve international peace. The law of jungle prevails and it is becoming worse every day. “The U.S. politics are of global control”. See, Chomsky (2004).
39 The introduction of this destructive modernization took place in Greece from the PASOK party in 1980s.
40 Ecumenism is the mean (instrument), that the dark powers are using since 1920, for the destruction of Orthodoxy. But, true Orthodox know their Ecclesiastical history well, so they cannot be fooled.
41 See, Davies (1998, pp. 1077-1080).
42 Christians have been divided in many denominations, leaving the tradition of the First Church. The largest Christian denominations among 37,000 total Christian churches, in 2005, world-wide membership, were (in millions): Roman Catholics: 1,120; Orthodox: 220; Anglicans: 80; Lutheran World Federation: 80; World Methodist Council: 70; and Presbyterians: 60. See, The Wall Street Journal, September 20, 2007, p. A1.
43 As the time is passing, this integration reveals itself; it is actually the predecessor of the globalization (=the global slavery).
44 On March 25, 1957, two treaties were signed in Rome that gave birth to the European Economic Community (EEC) and the European Atomic Energy Community (Euratom): the Treaties of Rome. The signatories of this agreement were Christian Pineau on behalf of France, Joseph Luns from the Netherlands, Paul Henri Spaak from Belgium, Joseph Bech from Luxemburg, Antonio Segni from Italy, and Konrad Adenauer from the Federal Republic of Germany. The Treaties were ratified by National Parliaments over the following months and came into force on January 1, 1958. (http://www.historiasiglo20.org/europe/traroma.htm).
45 See, Blum, Cameron, and Barnes (1970, p. 1032).
46 See, R. Donadio and S. Daley, “Revolts Raise Europe’s Fear on Migration”, The New York Times, March 10, 2011, pp. A1 and A12.
47 A French court sentenced nine men to prison for belonging to an Islamist group accused of plotting bombings. (The Wall Street Journal, October 24, 2008, p. A1).
48 The people of Norway voted against membership to the Union and if there were referenda in other countries, the EU would have less than half of its current members.
49 The Cyprus file has not opened yet (after 37 years) to see who was responsible for this violation of every international law and human rights (crimes against humanity). It seems that the island was betrayed by these anti-Greek politicians that were brought in the country as savors of the nation in summer of 1974.
50 In the minutes of a secret 1975 meeting of the National Security Council attended by President Ford reveal Henry Kissinger grumbling, "It is an act of insanity and national humiliation to have a law prohibiting the President from ordering assassination." - LOST CRUSADER: The Secret Wars of CIA Director William Colby, by John Prados, Oxford University Press, 2003. The February and March 2001 issues of Harper's Magazine feature a series by Christopher Hitchens on the case for charging Kissinger with War Crimes. Part I: The making of a war criminal and Part 2: Features an extensive section on East Timor. He created the Cyprian problem and the division of the island. His objective, as he mentioned in an interview to a Turkish newspaper, was the destruction of Greece and for this to happen, the Greek language, religion, civilization, history, and education must be destroyed.
51 There were some reports that George Papandreou had asked IMF for its financial support towards the country since December 2009 and the government did not contradict them. (Kathemerini, 2/20/2011).
52 It was expected that an IMF stand-by arrangement (the IMF’s standard loan for helping countries address balance of payments difficulties) valued at €15 billion ($20 billion) for that year would precede any assistance provided to Greece by the Euro-zone members.
53 The predecessor of Papandreou, Kostas Karamanlis had committed to cracking down on tax and social security contribution evasion (davadjides), but he failed and abandoned the country after five and a half years in power, even though that his term expired in eight years.
54 Up until 1986, there were still only two levels of local administration in Greece: The 1st level, which consisted of municipalities of two types (cities/demos and smaller rural communities/koinotita) and the 2nd level, which consisted of prefectures (nomarchia). A new law 2218/94 introduced the notion of “District Councils” to the 1st level of local administration. The 2nd level, provided for the establishment of Prefectural Administration, headed by elected representatives (prefect and prefectural council). The latest developments in the sector of local administration of the 1st level happened to be most drastic ones to harmonize with the European perspective. The Ministry of Internal Affairs proceeded with more drastic policies: It introduced Law 2539/98 (the “Ioannis Kapodistrias” Programme). According to this law, all existing municipalities (cities/demos) and communities (villages/koinotita), out of a total of 5,755 in 1997, were obliged to form new, enlarged municipalities. Thus, 900 enlarged municipalities and 134 communities were established. This “Ioannis Kapodistrias” Law has caused serious problems to the Greek country side and has destroyed all villages. Greeks abandoned their villages and moved to bigger cities and became workers for some type of business and most of them are unemployed and dependent on government unemployment insurance. This Law was disastrous for the entire country and its negative effects are shown currently with the debt crisis and the lost of sovereignty of the country. See, http://www.prd.uth.gr/uploads/discussion_papers/2002/uth-prd-dp-2002-18_en.pdf
55 The “Kalikratis” plan provides for an administrative reform equal to the “unknown until now structural change” according to the words of minister of interior Yiannis Ragousis. The bill was officially uploaded on the internet page of the government and was waiting for the comments of the citizens (www.ypes.gr). According to it the municipal governments will be dismissed and incorporated into 13 new periphery governments, which will match the geographical borders of the 13 administrative peripheries. Also the number of town halls will decrease from 1034 to 370 and the Centers for servicing the citizens will be modernized and for this purpose all the possibilities that the new technologies are offering will be used. It is also suggested the peripheries Attica and Thessalonica in addition to their normal functions to act also as metropolis, which was welcomed with some reactions from the side of ministers and local governors. This structural change of the peripheral self-government bodies take the responsibilities to unite their strategies for the development of the outskirts and take care of governing the funds on the Peripheral program for development, which depends on the participation of the citizens. A leader of the peripheral self-government body will be peripheral governor, who along with the Peripheral council is elected in direct elections by citizens. For the election of the peripheral governors and the mayors the margin of 42% is rising to 50%+1 and for the allocation of the seats will remain as it now. Among the rest of the governing bodies of the peripheries is the Executive committee, the Peripheral council and the Council for discussing the matters concerning the periphery, in which take part all the mayors and representatives of the civil society and nongovernmental organizations. Parallel to this a “Peripheral Ombudsman” for the citizens and organizations is also created. According to the “Kalikratis” plan the Centers for servicing citizens will be modernized and small centers will be created in each village or neighborhood depending on the needs of the people. A “smart” “citizens’ card” will be introduced using, which all the town halls could automatically service the citizens and issue them certificates for example. The card could also be used by its owner during the local elections. In front of the town halls machines for servicing citizens that would be working 24 hours would be placed. The bill of the government faced the reactions of the opposing party as well as ministers from the government. “The plan creates concentrated, national, local mechanisms that release the responsibility of the state on the subjects of education, health care, infrastructure and social services”, said the leader of the communist party Aleka Papariga. Some of the ministers of the government criticized the wording about the role of the peripheral governor of Attica region as he will turn into a local Prime minister for 4 million voters. Vice president of the Greek government Theodoros Pangalos suggested as a solution Attica to be subdivided into at least three peripheries. In their critiques the ministers raised the subject about the price of these changes. On the other side the representatives of the local self-governing bodies are waiting and avoid taking sides or discussing the matters on securing the funds for the correct functioning of the new town halls. This Law has to be repealed; otherwise the nation will be in ruins very soon. See, some of its negative effects in: http://www.antibaro.gr/node/2683 .
56 Kostas Semitis had only one slogan during his campaign: “I will put Greece to the EMU”. He wanted to enslave Greeks to this unnamable beast, the predecessor of the global enslavement.
57 Goldman Sachs is a hornet’s nest in the U.S. socio-politico-economic system. Its employees are going to the Fed and to the government and then, back to Goldman Sachs. They (this club) are in control of the economy, central banking, and politics. See, Wessel (2009) and Nelson D. Schwartz and Sewell Chan, “In Greece’s Crisis, Fed Studies Wall St.’s Activities”, The New York Times, February 25, 2010.
58 Stocks slid, while the dollar and Treasuries gained, as U.S. jobless claims rose, China’s export growth slowed and Spain’s credit rating was cut. Equities extended losses and oil pared declines as the Associated Press reported Saudi Arabian police fired into a crowd of protesters. (Bloomberg.com, March 10, 2011).
59 Of course, so far we have not seen any regulations because the financial institutions are more powerful than governments. Then, the next real crisis is certain. This one that we have experienced since 2007, was just a small test and went well. No true reaction from any leader. Greece’s total debt is insignificant [€1 trillion ($1.4 trillion) or $123,894/person] compared to the U.S. total (public and private) debt of over $156.2 trillion or $505,502/person, as of January 1, 2010. (Grandfather Debt Summary).
60 TV News MEGA, February 11, 2011.
61 The U.S.A. was the biggest economic power in the world and is declining daily. Greece was the biggest spiritual power on earth and is descending daily. We must grieve for the plight of these two nations and someone is responsible for this. The problem must be the bad and controlled leadership in these two “model” nations.
62 For example, in EU, 73.8% are against privatization, 80.9% are against Turkey’s entrance to EU, 83.6% are against Euro-constitution (Treaty of Lisbon), 71.6% want to go back to their previous national currencies, 71.5% of Greeks are in favor of vetoing Skopje’s (Vardarska’s) entrance to NATO and EU, Europeans are against the independence of Kosovo, and 86.1% of Greeks are against the marriage of homosexuals. (e-grammes.gr., different polls). Europeans are actually against this “anti-European creature”, the EU.
63 The main reason for unemployment in Europe is the illegal and uncontrolled immigration. Europe is in trouble to lose its thousands years old identity.
64 Dr. Shannon Grimes in Tahlequah Daily Press, September 25, 2008.
65 Members: In 1998 eleven European Union member-states had met the convergence criteria, and the Euro-zone came into existence with the official launch of the euro on 1 January 1999. Greece qualified in 2000 and was admitted on 1 January 2001. Physical coins and banknotes were introduced on 1 January 2002. Slovenia qualified in 2006 and was admitted on 1 January 2007. Cyprus and Malta qualified in 2007 and were admitted on 1 January 2008. Slovakia qualified in 2008 and joined on 1 January 2009. Estonia qualified in 2010 and joined on 1 January 2011. That makes 17 member states with 330 million people in the Euro-zone.
66 European leaders met in Brussels in February 2011 discussing the creation of the EMF and put an amount of €500 billion as its reserves. TV News ALTER and MEGA, February 15, 2011.
67 It is estimated that Greece must have more than 1.5 million illegal immigrants since 1990s with the fall of communism and the crisis (wars) in Asia. Lately, with the political crises in North Africa Tunis, Algeria, Egypt (after Mubarak left the country), and others (Bahrain, Yemen, Libya, etc.) new influx of illegal immigrants are coming to Greece, Italy, and the entire Europe, too. See, The New York Times, February 14, 2011, pp. A1 and A9 and The Wall Street Journal, February 14, 2011, pp. A1, A14, and A16 and TV News MEGA and ALTER, February 20, 2011.
68 The exchange rate has become a dirty floating one since March 1973 and the dollar lost its international acceptance, due to the U.S. policy against the Arab and some Muslim countries. Euro might play a small role at the movement, but the Chinese currency (Yuan) will be very interested in the future, due to the size of this developing economy, the population of that country, and its aggressiveness.
69 The illegal migration has seriously divided the population of the EU. The repressed liberals (new age believers, controlled media, globalist politicians, etc.) are in “favor of accepting” all these millions of foreigners, but the conservative patriotic and realist citizens say “no” to this, without their will, invasion. Greece has a very serious problem with her millions of illegal and Muslim immigrants.