Sunday, May 13, 2012

Greek Government Barbie says "Math is hard!"

Glad I'm not heavy into Euros.

You can't kick the can farther down the road when the pavement ended a dozen yards back, there, Alexis. Once you've eaten the goose, there won't be any more golden egg omelets.

One wonders whether the Jerries are deciding whether or not to evict the Greeks from their living room sofa, where they've been camped out for the last several years, swilling Ouzo and chowing down on takeout gyros on their rich northern cousin's Master Card. As painful as booting them out of the Eurozone might be, there may not be a Eurozone left to boot them out of if the decision is put off too long.

17 comments:

Anonymous said...

I'll bet more than a few Germans have been reminiscing about the Stahlhelm, lately.

(A ruling from the line judge has been requested on whether the above is a Godwin violation)

Mike James

Joe in PNG said...

The really sad thing is that not one single person who's into the whole 'tax & spend social welfare nanny state thing' is learning a single lesson from this train wreck.

Ed Foster said...

Black Wednesday back in '92 proved that the Euro was nothing but a pipedream. It also proved that George Soros was a sociopath, but primarily it showed that the Brits had a handle on what was needed to make the system work, and realized the Eurozone Phoneys didn't have a clue.

Turk Turon said...

Well put!

trevalyan said...

The Eurodream is OVER. The only question left is whether the ending will be comical as every major nation in Europe tries to use even more socialism to dig itself out, or tragic.

The German standard of living will almost completely collapse as every bond trader in the world tries to stay five thousand miles away from the Euro and their banks shatter under trillions in "toxic assets" in third-grade countries like Greece. Having millions of productive citizens with a monumental sense of betrayal will end in flames, and the self-delusion of the people warning us that Greece will become extremist while neglecting what might happen in Germany is crazy-pants.

Anyways, I'm calling it now: Greece will end in a disorderly default, Spain will follow next, and the Eurozone will collapse in short order as the major European nations comprehensively fail to assuage the bond market's worries. Yes, this doesn't exactly make me Nostradamus, but it's a sight better than anything you'll read in the New York Times.

Kristopher said...

If the Germans were smart here, they would re-issue the DM, and just change the name of the currency in electronic accounts in country.

And then let the Euro float wherever it wants to go.

People can use Euros for cash transactions until they can start printing DMs again.

If the rest of europe won't behave responsibly, take your lumps and just walk away.

Anonymous said...

Two thoughts:

1) Predictably, media accounts portray the Germans as the Big Bad Meanies, because they expect the Greeks to get their act together. From Salon and Slate, you'd think Angela Merkel was a reincarnation of you-know-who.

2) It is unfortunate that the US doesn't have a fiscally responsible elder sibling (like Germany to Greece) to make us shape up. Even at this point, we could get our debt down to a sustainable level with some relativley moderate fiscal tweaks. If our fantasy-peddling politicians put it off another few years (which they will, so long as we keep electing fantasy peddlers), the changes needed to fix it will be much more painful.

Alath
Carmel IN

Will said...

@trevalyan:

The simple fact of printing it in the NYT would cause it to happen. That's why you never will see it.
Wouldn't be surprised if even a fake printing didn't set it off.

markm said...

Mike James: No Godwin's law violation. The Stahlhelm was issued starting in 1916 and became an international icon of the German military while the Kaiser was still in power.

Anonymous said...

It's already too late to "fix" anything.

Bram said...

Unfortunately, I'm heavy in dollars.

Pakkinpoppa said...

My son will be 3 next month. The 8th. My dad was born the 7th of 1944, and my son waited to the next day to have his own birthday.*

I have an uneasy feeling that in a few years, I may be telling the little boy how it was like when I was his age. Like we could go to the store and buy brand new Matchbox and Hot Wheels cars, and how reloading was a hobby that people took up to be able to shoot more, not because it was necessary.

I hope I'm wrong, but if enough of the world has the same view my dad does (Elect Mittens and it'll get fixed! No, I don't know how, but it won't fall apart, it can't because it hasn't yet!) then we're in deeper trouble when the rose colored glasses get taken away.

*he actually may have just been torturing the "donor uterus" for another 8 hours, and I wouldn't hold it against my little fella. I'm not making light of childbirth, I'm making light of the donor uterus, by the way.

perlhaqr said...

Too bad booting California out of the Amerizone won't be an option when their / our turn comes around. :(

Weer'd Beard said...

Dad's in Italy right now on vacation.

I told him to hold onto some genuine Guinea Euros because that's the closest thing ton Confederate Dollars that are still in circulation!

Even got a chortle out of his Marxist ass with that one.

Also when talking about Europe he suddenly frowns at Marxism, but talking about turning the US into Sweden with NASCAR....he's all TALLY HO!

rickn8or said...

trevalyan, blame me. I moved my 401k to foreign investments just before Teh Won took office...

Borepatch said...

The problem is not whether to kick them out of the Eurozone, which the Germans would do in a Weimar minute. The problem is that Chancellor Schroeder made sure that all the German banks lent tons of dough to Greece (that's where all the spiffy new infrastructure came from).

If the Greeks exit and devalue, all those nice loans need to get written down by 80% or more. That hits Frankfurt as hard as Athens - maybe more.

If you borrow a thousand dollars from the bank, you have a creditor. If you borrow 100 million from it, you have a partner.

Greece has a lot of partners.

Zendo Deb said...

Greece screwed over those "partners" in a big way. They didn't refuse to pay interest on bonds. They refused to pay back the principle. But they are not in default - at least not according to the brain trust running the EU.

The big thing is that once again, governments have learned they don't need to pay their bills. The downside is large, but I think Spain and Italy are going to be wanting out-from-under the same way Greece got a handout.

Aside from Germany - which kicked people of welfare, loosened working rules and jump started their economy in a big way - most of Europe will see little to no growth, even if they get out of recession.

And if Germany had an election today, I think any party swearing to stop the handouts would win. (Though Merkel did a nice job telling the new French President to stick it when asked to renegotiate an austerity treaty. Very polite.)