Sunday, September 19, 2010

Greece’s pending metamorphosis

by Mark Dragoumis
September 18, 2010

When a few months ago Greece found that it could no longer borrow money from the markets to service its debt, the EU and the IMF devised a plan – written down in the form of a memorandum of understanding – to carry out the rescue project. Here, however, is where the tale of the absurd begins.

The socialist Government of Greece legislates and oversees the implementation of the harsh measures contained in the memorandum while at the same time complaining that this is against its principles, its policies and its ideology. For the PASOK Government the harsh measures are but a “necessary evil” to avert bankruptcy. The “New Democracy” centre-right opposition – whose former leader Mr Karamanlis had predicted the need for such harsh measures to be taken just before he lost the election in October – voted against the memorandum. The parties of the Left are of course against everything that upsets the “working class”. To a visitor from Mars the Greeks appear to resent being rescued without, however, opting for the alternative which would be the immediate bankruptcy of their country.

The trouble is that nobody has really tried to explain to the Greeks that debt transfers power from the borrower to the creditor. When the Prime Mr George Papandreou bemoans the “loss of national sovereignty” through the memorandum he fails to mention the damage that the exercise of national sovereignty by his own party has done to the country in the past.


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