Category Archives: Greece

Greece is still nice, so fuck it!

I’m currently reposing in the village of Kardamyli in the Mani peninsula of mainland Greece. It’s a place I’m very fond of and that I’ve been to a couple of times before.

The last time I was here was around five years back and I’ve noticed a few changes but I’m pleased to say not too many. There’s a new supermarket – where I’m pleased to say the Ouzo is cheaper – a new restaurant which we’re going to try out tonight, and one we used to frequent which has changed hands. Overall though it’s still the same old place we love.

I do however notice a creeping gentrification in that some of the bars and restaurants are moving away from the traditional Greece we love and trying to go a bit upmarket. Let’s hope it doesn’t get out of hand.

The Greeks are still talking to us despite Brexit. In fact one local businessman said “I wish Greece had the balls to do it!” So I guess we’re still welcome?

Local ATMs are taking the piss at €0.96 = £1 but that’s banks for you. However you can still get a meal for two with wine for €25 so even at parity who gives a fuck? And a bottle of Ouzo for €9.50 and five litres of half decent red wine for around €12! Well, fuck it! I’m happy.

Frankly, if it wasn’t part of the Fourth Reich, I’d happily live here. Mind you, it’s 93 today and that’s a tad warm! Time to retreat indoors and crank up the AirCon…


This is a good deal?!?

So after days of ‘difficult and intense negotiation’, the Fourth Reich has capitulated to the Turks. It seems the anything is fine as long as it doesn’t jeopardise Turkish admission to the EU…

Can anyone explain to me exactly how the ‘deal’ being reached between the Reich and Turkey is going to reduce the number of migrants coming in to Europe? The plan is that the ‘irregular’ migrants reaching Greece will be returned to Turkey – provided that for each each one returned Europe takes one ‘genuine’ refugee from the camps on the Syrian border and resettles them in the EU.

So basically the same number of migrants enter Europe – only, of course, the ‘irregular’ migrants will continue to come anyway. And in return for this, Turkey gets visa free entry into the EU. This means that not only do we get a continuing flow of illegals, but also a load of ‘legals’ as well as a load of Turks.

And what does the EU get in return? Well, bugger all actually except for a bill for €6 billion in Turkish blackmail money and an even bigger increase in migration than we have at the moment.

And while we’re at it, how are we going to get those migrants onto the boats in Greece to return them to Turkey? I foresee a few problems in that. They’re not exactly going to go quietly are they?

But Britain doesn’t need to worry because we’ve got Cameron and his first rate negotiating skills. According to Cave-In-Dave, Britain has ‘an absolutely rock-solid opt-out from these things, so there’s no prospect of Britain joining a common asylum process in Europe’

I’ll believe that when I see it…

Stavros he say "Fuck you!"…

… and, quite frankly, I can’t say I’m surprised.

With two thirds of the votes counted as I write this it looks like the Greeks have decided to support their government and reject the terms offered to them by the Fourth Reich in return for allowing them to open their banks again.

You can’t back an animal into a corner and threaten its very existence and then expect it not to come out clawing tooth and nail for your throat. This principal seems to have been wholly lost on the people responsible for doing just that to Greece.

On Friday, the greek finance minister Yanis Varoufakis, said he would rather cut off his right arm than sign the deal that was on the table. He then went on to say that Greece was effectively on a ‘war footing’.

Two things have struck me about the way this shower of shite has been dealt with. First, the offer that was put to Greece on Tuesday was immediately withdrawn when Prime Minster Tsipras said he’d put it to the people in a referendum. This is not the reaction of reasonable and logical people to somebody effectively saying “I personally don’t like your terms, but I’ll put it to the electorate.” It’s not the reaction of people who are serious about doing a deal.

Since then, the rhetoric in Germany and France in particular has been stepped up. Fair enough. Let’s all holler and shout our positions from the rooftops. That how we get our points across to people who need to hear them. This brings me to my second point : when they didn’t get the reaction they wanted (i.e scared the shit out of the Greek public) they decided to cut off the Greek banking system from the rest of the world by excluding them from the European Target2 electronic transfer system. You’d have had to scan the financial pages long and hard to spot that, but it did happen!

What this means is that Greek companies buying in raw materials from outside Greece were denied any method of transferring funds to their suppliers – even though they had the money to pay them with. This was blatent enemy action to force the closure and bankruptcy of Greek companies. Varoufakis was quite right in this respect when he called it an act of war.

So while it looks certain that the Greeks have stuck two fingers up to the deal that was on the table but then was taken off again (duh!) the question is ‘What happens next?’

Well, I’m fucked if I know…!

Greece should stick to it’s guns…

Nobody like bullies and blackmailers, but few have the guts to stand up and be counted. The Greek Prime Minister would seem to be an exception to this rule.

The Greek government owes a staggering amount of money. €220 billion to the various countries that have given it bailout funds, €39 billion to private investors and €120 to financial institutions including it’s own banks. That breaks down as 60% to the Eurozone, 10% to the IMF, 6% to the ECB, 15% in bonds and the rest to various banks. Let’s face it, there is no way they will ever pay it back and it amounts to around 180% of Greece’s GDP.

The Germans, of course, know they’ll never be able to pay it back. In fact Germany is owed €56 billion on it’s own. But for the Germans, this is a good investment if it effectively bankrupts the country so they can force a regime change and install a puppet government that will do Berlin’s bidding.

Make no mistake. This is the third great European war. The third attempt by the Germans to take over the continent. That’s what the EU is about and what it has always been about. It worked for Prussia when they absorbed Germany, and it’s working again now. If the plan ain’t broken, then there’s no need to fix it.

I admire Alexis Tsipras’ stand against this tyranny. He was elected by the Greek people to stand up for Greece. This is a stand against revolution, against bulllying, against blackmail, and against a Fourth German Reich. Tsipras was elected on a clear mandate against the external forces attacking his country to support the electorate who have had enough of being screwed and humiliated. And in my view, he’s doing exactly what he should be doing.

One interesting development that hit the financial press on Tuesday was a plan by Greece to take the EU to court in it’s very own Court of Justice. They are considering an injunction to prevent Greece being forced out of the Eurozone. Didn’t see that in the MSM did you?

It seems that the Germans thought they were being clever when they worded the treaties in such a way that once you were in the Euro, there was no provision for leaving it. Effectively, when you’re in then you’re locked in.

The Germans are threatening to kick Greece out if the referendum goes ahead. The French are being pretty vocal about it too. Germany’s vice-chancellor said “At the core it is a yes or no to remaining in the Eurozone.”

Well,maybe not. Just maybe they’ve all underestimated the resourcefulness of the Greek government. I, for one, would be delighted to see the Greeks play this particular card…

Greeks like slow cooking…

As any of my regular readers will know, I am a Grecophile. I’ve been there a lot and I love the people, the country and especially the food. And if there’s one thing I’ve learnt over the years, the Greeks like to cook things slowly, unhurriedly and at a relaxed pace…

So what’s this got to do with anything, I hear you asking? Well, the Greek bailout comes to a head this month – around the 14th to be precise – when the government pays out €1.7billion in social security payments and a further €1.4billion to repay 6 month treasury bills. And of that’s not bad enough, the next day is when the emergency bailout is reviewed. The Fourth Reich has the power to pull the plug and bankrupt Greece.

Of course this won’t happen because, like their cooking, the Greek play a long, slow game. They’re the masters of brinksmanship. They know that Brussels will do pretty much anything to stop Greece leaving the Euro so they’ve decided to wind them up a bit by sending their Prime Minister to Moscow for a cosy chat with Vladimir Putin.

This, of course, pisses the Reich off even more because it is seen as breaking EU solidarity over their foreign policy on Russia in response what’s happening in Ukraine. The Greeks are well aware of this.

So what’s going on? Well, the Greek government is certainly more left leaning that its predecessor and is in real danger of having no dosh – and if you can’t get it off Brussels then why not Moscow? Putin will be more than happy to get a foothold in Greece and will no doubt be wanting his pound of flesh in return, plus there’s the political credence to be gained in Russia at a time when Putin’s popularity is not at it’s highest point.

Yep, good politics all round. Putin gets to look like the caring, sharing, concerned world statesman that he certainly isn’t. Brussels get’s the noose tightened around it’s financial neck. The Greeks win either way by playing both sides against the middle.

My guess it that a Brussels climb down will be on the cards at about one minute before the Greeks run out of funds. Slow cooking at it’s finest…