My views on Greece: EU Actions Undermine Democracy and National Sovereignty

1.     It was corrupt Greek politicians of the two main parties (New Democracy and Pasok) and their oligarch friends that destroyed Greece. Once the country joined the Euro, international banks loaned Greek governments huge amounts of monies which was used to fuel their political hold on power, secure building contracts for their developer friends as well as to personally enrich themselves. A country whose people were traditionally thrifty changed overnight as they experienced the world of credit.
2.     The politicians falsified the national budgetary figures to secure Greek’s entry to the Euro in 2001.
3.     Political misuse of state monies to enrich politicians and their cronies, governmental failure to put in place a proper tax collection system and their misuse of the first Euro bailout loan to pay off international debtor loans rather than invest in the country has meant that the Greek people are permanently in debt for generations to come unless a comprehensive write down is put in place. 
4.  The wealthy Greeks more than any other social class have paid little in taxes.
5.     No prominent member of this corrupt elite has ended up in jail.
6.     It is now the ordinary Greek people that are paying for the elite’s extravagant lifestyles, yachts and grandiose building programmes.
7.     For last seven years, Greeks have been forced to live through a policy of austerity to experience draconian cuts in hospitals, education and other public services
8.      Unemployment is at 60% for the under 25 year olds with little unemployment assistance available.
9.     For those that have jobs, wages are low.
10. Hunger and scavenging for food is a fact of life for increasing numbers of Greeks.
11. With such an austerity programme forced on the nation by their creditors, the ability for people to contribute towards paying off the national debt is almost zero. Throughout history visionary politicians such as Roosevelt in the US and Atlee in GB and economists such as Chopra and his employers the IMF have recognised this economic fact. Austerity in such cases leads to more austerity and more indebtedness.
12. Further cuts are unimaginable for ordinary Greeks.  Extra VAT will only impact negatively on the tourism trade for instance.
13. Selling off national resources to pay for the mad expenditure of a small rich elite is immoral and is undemocratic. National resources should be in the ownership of a sovereign state and its citizens.
14. The international bankers who are assisting Greece going into debt and the venture capitalists who are waiting on the sidelines to purchase the country’s public assets at knockdown prices conspired with others to bankrupt and humiliate the country.
15. Alexis Tsipras is the first Greek prime minister in modern times that has been honest with the electorate and kept by his party’s election promises. Hence Syriza’s huge win in the referendum on the bailout.
16. In spite of the European establishment manipulation of the media  (to give the impression even up until the day of the vote that the YES campaigners were in the lead) and the dark messages from the financial and political big-guns that a NO vote would mean exit from the EU, nearly two thirds of Greeks supported Syriza.
17. What Syriza want is to secure a significant write down in the debt amount, a sustainable repayment structure and therefore a chance for the economy to recover so unemployment can be lowered, wages rises, businesses to grow. In other words, to give hope and a future for the Greek people.  
18. The Federal Republic of Germany secured a write-off of over 50% of debt at an international conference held in London during 1953. With anger towards Germany still strong after the Nazi destruction of much of the continent from World War Two, many countries were not happy to offer such a generous debt relief. But the Americans persuaded its European allies, including Greece, to relinquish debt repayments and reparations in order to build a stable and prosperous Western Europe.
19. The EU leaders and the banks have ignored the democratic wishes of the Greek people, have set out to blackmail and humiliate them for their vote in the referendum and have organised a very EU coup by forcing the resignation of the country’s popular finance minister Yanis Varoufakis,  by splitting the Syriza party and by increasing the severity of the bailout conditions.
20. The EU leaders may feel that they have won a battle against Syriza. But in fact by their actions, they have undermined democracy, destroyed the sovereignty of a nation and privatised public assets to benefit a small international elite.
21. I for one will be putting my money where my words are and will be holidaying in Greece later this month.

Note: In Ireland the ordinary taxpayers ended up paying for the extravaganza of our wealthy incompetent corrupt politicians. We were never given a say in this decision by the last government. I abhor the fact that my taxes and that of my children are used to pay off  the loans/purchases of the corrupt Denis O’Brien and co that has allowed him and others to purchases NAMA companies at knockdown prices. Syriza is trying to stop this injustice happening in Greece. 

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