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Study: Germany made €100bn profit on Greek crisis

What? I don’t believe it! Rea-lly? Germany made a 100 billion euro profit on Greek crisis? No, kidding? HA! And yes, so it is! A study conducted by a German Economic Institute has shown that every time investors got bad news about Greece, they rushed to Germany’s ‘safe haven’ with the effect that the interest rates on German government bonds were falling!

“Greece’s biggest creditor Germany has made a huge profit on the country’s debt crisis over the last 5 years as it saved through lower interest payments on funds borrowed amid investor “flights to safety.”

Each time investors got bad news about Greece, they rushed to the ‘safe haven’ of Germany, with the interest rates on German government bonds falling, according to the study from the private, non-profit Leibniz Institute of Economic Research, Agence France-Presse reported Monday.

The estimated €100 billion Germany had saved since 2010 accounted for over three percent of its GDP, the report said.

“These savings exceed the costs of the crisis – even if Greece were to default on its entire debt,” the study said.

The bonds of countries such as the United States, France and the Netherlands had benefited “to a much smaller extent.”

Germany’s Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble who has always been against writing off the Greek debt pointed to his own government’s balanced budget.

The balanced budget, however, was possible mainly as a result of Germany’s interest savings through the Greek crisis, the study claimed.

Schauble has repeatedly said the Greek debt of €316 billion cannot be restructured within the eurozone. He claimed Grexit might be a solution for the country’s debt ‘haircut.’ (via RT.com)

PS and I was thinking the whole time, Germany had just the noble motive to save the euro and the euro zone :p

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113 comments

  1. the german government saved that money due to lower interest rates, Id assume german savers lost far more. then again im not necessarily against that, money from savers to governments is a de facto wealth tax that kind of wealth redistribution works for me. on the other export industry thrives because of lower euro while regular people pay more on imports, so its the other way around from that angle.
    finally those 100b that were saved nicely compare to the about 100b the greek government received from the private secto in 2012 haircut.
    crap the world is complicated 🙂

  2. You said ministers outside Germany need guts?

  3. Hmm… I am a bit confused. If saving on the interest paid on government bonds = profit, then Greece has profited handsomely from the bailout as well, since it is paying below-market interest rate.

    On the other hand, in Giaourti’s opinion (which I do not necessarily share) any interest a creditor gets is a profit. Following this logic, Eurozone tax payers profit from lending Greece money, no matter how favorable the conditions are for Greece (or even if the market-based interest their nations have to pay is higher than the interest Greece pays).

    I guess it is all about the argument one is trying to advocate and the narrative one is trying to promote.

  4. Giaourti Giaourtaki

    Thanks to Saugosch’s iron discipline but wasn’t Greece cow not some ugly hangover-fish?

  5. Giaourti Giaourtaki

    Plus 200 billion from more exports?
    German savers and pensioners hate zero interest rates, so Germany wins but lots of Germans loose.
    Next step: Pirea bankrupt due to new Suez Canal

  6. keeptalkinggreece

    “crap the world is complicated ” I say that the whole time

  7. keeptalkinggreece

    yes, I did. was I wrong?

  8. keeptalkinggreece

    “Eurozone tax payers profit from lending Greece money” of course, they do. problem is that states use taxpayers’ money but they don’t share profit with them. OK, they may set a kids; playground here and hire a doctor & a nurse there. so EZ taxpayers inderictly profit as well.

  9. Will the German Economic Institute also research the increase in exports Germany
    enjoyed from the drop in the value of the €uro as a result of the crisis?
    As a net exporter, unlike Greece, it must have benefited from that as well.

  10. yes you do 🙂 which is one of the reasons I like your blog, a whole lot of people prefer to see the world in black and white though.

  11. yes, because inside too.
    I have a minster of law and a minster of the interior who refuse to act on NSA and CIA spying on the people as well as the government. And that even though there is public proof of it.

  12. “PS and I was thinking the whole time, Germany had just the noble motive to save the euro and the euro zone :p”

    This is a little bit naive, I think. There was no noble motive behind creating the eurozone, why should there by one behind saving it? It is all about economy and politics. The game now being played has little to do with Greece (or Greeks), it is mainly about the future perspective of eurozone, how it will evolve – into what kind of structure. So if one analyze what is going on, it has to be done with cold head and without emotions!

  13. Giaourti Giaourtaki

    What 100 billion in 2012?
    27 bln of this ECB bought from hedge-funds for 30% but gets from Greece 100%, another 27 bln lost the social security funds and then there’s more than 40 billion bank recapitalization and this although these Greek banks belonged in big shares to French and other banks. Beside even more “bailouts” and austerity all this money and “cuts” add up to “repaying” 200 billion until 2030 but of this 150 billion are interest for the “friends” of ECB/IMF; I guess none of their CEOs gets any bonus for such deals…

  14. If you think that German professional economists rigged their data to prove that Germany has cheated Greece of money, then you have a very odd way of viewing the world. The German economists supporting the Troika are all on the payroll of the German government: that is what you need to understand. These economists are not.

    The whole management of the eurozone has been a political conspiracy from the outset, and morphed into a criminal conspiracy more recently. There is no interest in helping Greece, any more than the Mafia are concerned for their good health of their victims.

  15. Wrong? This is the pre-condition number one for anything of interest to people in Europe. Os where all the actual goverments are failling miserably.

  16. The story is SPIN
    Germany credibility both at home & on the global markets is nil.
    So they spin a GOOD NEWS STORY.
    Who will believe this rubbish – please.
    But also – would you run to thieves with your money ?
    European Banks have lost most – if not all their lucrative customers.
    Ha, ha, ha, ha,
    p.s. The basil I told you about is African Blue.

  17. keeptalkinggreece

    you missed the irony

  18. This is the pre-condition number one for anything of interest to people in Europe.

    I don’t agree with that. Politicians with balls is indeed a necessity, but the very first necessity is for the people, the voters, to hold these guys (balls and all)to account and responsible for their actions. That is the missing link, accountability. The guy who steals billions from his people and country has balls, but do you really want him to be in charge?
    Today it is reported that Tsipras will table a bill reducing the perks and wages for Greek politicians. Balls or populism? I fear the latter. If he had balls, he would propose the pay for politicians to be the average industrial wage the people in this country are suppposed to live on (That should in fact be the norm for all politicians, everywhere. Minimum wage coupled with full, 100% verifiable accountability). A 50% reduction in their wage still leaves them with a pay packet the vast majority of Greeks wouldn’t dare dream of in their wildest dreams…
    The problem is that people usually mistake populism for balls (the success and popularity of Donal Trump being a prime example of this), and that makes for very dangerous and very untrustworthy politicians…

  19. Surely there is no interest in helping Greece! Why should there be any? Each member of eurozone has its own land to care for, its own voters to persuade in the coming elections, its own budgetary limits. In fact, creating the eurozone was a conditionality to Germans in order to reunify their land back in 90’s. It was french “game” after all. Well, they didnt manage it enough. They created the idea of eurozone but the Germans created the rules! It has nothing to do with conspiracy but with (geo)politics. Everyone in the euro knows the euroclub must change the way it functions. Now, you have 2 groups of countries: the ones with more or less controlled public finances (so called North wing) and the rest (the South). What we all see now is the “battle” between those 2 groups. The north wants to get rid of debt-burdened south and modify the euro to a strict rule-based organization (no deficits, no debts, etc.). The south would like something more of a “transfer union” to heal itself from its own inability to control public spending. The Greece is the test-subject. The ultimatum showed clearly who has the upper hand and what the conditions (rules) of euro will be from now on.

  20. “but the very first necessity is for the people, the voters, to hold these guys (balls and all)to account and responsible for their actions. ”
    fully agreed

    “That should in fact be the norm for all politicians, everywhere. Minimum wage coupled with full, 100% verifiable accountability).”
    No. I never understood this fixation with politicians wages. I want commpetent people working 60-70 hours+ a week. If they do so then Id say anything up to 10times average income is fine. The problem isnt wages the problem is when they take money through other avenues and let that influence decions.

  21. Your open admission (which did not exist before the Communist countries entered the EU)is why the Union will fall apart. We should never have allowed the East European communist bloc in, because your mentality is fucked up. You are obsessed with being anti-communist, and apparently that means being neoliberal individualist and unable to co-operate with anyone. You are basically destructive.

  22. I assume you are German. Well, your problem is a false assumption. You think Germany is a sovereign country. Sadly, it is not. Nowadays, there is just one independent country in Europe: Russia. Like it or not.

  23. “That should in fact be the norm for all politicians, everywhere. Minimum wage coupled with full, 100% verifiable accountability”

    I would like to ask this. What kind of people would be willing to perform the job of a politician under such conditions?

  24. René Henri Pasche

    Institutions as persons are not free from degeneration. The EZ a conspiracy from the outset? If so, it was a conspiracy against the deutsche Mark under French leadership! That Germany, the champion of monetary discipline, would abandon a strong currency in favour of a weak one without any resistance was wishful thinking from the very beginning. Maybe that the EZ was thought to be an instrument to improve the conditions of the economically weaker States. In the case of Greece, as we all know, it did not work. That is true. But conspiracy? The international finance system “Hochfinanz and Finanzbarone”, I have some doubts, but I am not a specialist in finances.

  25. Giaourti Giaourtaki

    How could the French be so stupid not to know that the big German idea of the Eurozone is much older? It was planned in Germoney until 1942 with “Europabank” in Vienna, the currency’s name was “Euro-Guilders”, instead of Brussels there would have been “Reichshauptsstadt Germania” and also the German currency worked already in 21 member-states until 1944/45; the texts of the contracts got impressively similarities to today’s Euro.
    The French must have been super-stupid because the OK to Wiedervereiterung was not as important as the 2 plus 4 contracts and the words, as reunification never happened.
    Since 1946 and 1953 Germoney was obliged to pay the war-debts to Greece AFTER Reunification and therefore Schäuble and Kohl called it “joining” (of GDR) instead.

  26. Courage in a politician lies on the opposite side if populism, at least for my eyes. Tsipras was not even able to hold his finance minister Varoufakis against the foreign creditors. Now, in the middle of a severe defeat, doesnt matter that much wathever he does more. But your point about the necessary backup of the population makes all sense. With courage is possible to get it.

  27. René Henri Pasche

    “with cold head and without emotions”. Not even Hitler and Himmler could do this, although one of H’ favorite adj and adv was “cold like ice” (eiskalt). It does not fit to the Greek character.

  28. They did not make money on Greek crisis, but on interest rate decrease and difference between good and bad country credit risk (Germany versus PIIGS).
    This is not about Greece, but this is about:
    – quantitative easing and interest rate decrease
    – beeing the best credit risk in Europe anotherwors beeing safe haven

  29. But Germany does not want to dominate Europe or wants a German Europe. This time it is different. Honestly.

  30. Giaourti Giaourtaki

    No Smart-phones without even smarter mass-murders and every car-driver is nearly killing hundreds of cyclists a day, no arrests are ever made, even not for road-rage and if you wanna sue them the police will laugh at you.

  31. So it is in Germany’s interest that others are not safe havens then, right? So others not recovering fast because of austerity (which has proven to stifle recovery and economic growth) works out nicely if you are considered a safe haven like Germany, right? I am not saying this is German policy but I find it interesting that every time Germany seems to profit from crisis in other countries whether it is them loaning money that comes back with interest to their banks (that made bad investments in PIIGS) being bailed out by European tax payers.

  32. Why is it that we allow politicians to decide how much they are going to pay themselves? After all, they are OUR employees…
    Why do we allow politicians who tell us they are worth 5k a month to turn around and tell others they are only worth 2.95€ an hour? Why is it that people are expected to perform to the best of their abilities for peanuts, while we have completely overpaid politicians who don’t perform at all?
    What should happen is this. We should pay our politicians the same minimum living wage they expect everybody else to live on. For the very simple reason that this would first and foremost stop the ever increasing phenomenon of people working a full time job and not taking home a living wage. You could, in the case of the politicians, do something like give them a bonus of 5 year wages after the policies they implemented during their term are proven to be in the interest of people and country and prove to have been beneficial for people and country. Otherwise, no bonus. It gives them an incentive to think about things instead of tinker with things… We might even end up with politicians doing something remotely positive for a change…

  33. If you don’t hold a stick behind the door to keep these guys in line, you will invariable end up with the bunch of free loaders we always end up with. Unconditional responsibility and total accountability have to be imposed by the people, not allowed for by the politicians. This is not something we should ask for, it is something we must demand. And believe you me, they will not like it…

  34. I don’t think they want Greece to suffer. Suffering PIIGS buy less German products 🙂

  35. René Henri Pasche

    You are perfectly right, the Third Reich was established as a European empire under German leadership, at the beginning among equal States, later with non-sovereign satellites composed of “hands” only to serve the master. As far as France and the Euro are concerned, it seems indeed that France was really afraid of a strong Deutschmark that would become t h e currency in Europe after the fall of the Sowjet Empire. Maybe naive? Or the last hope not to become number two on the European mainland!

  36. Nice. Yet I asked something else:

    What kind of people would be willing to perform the job of a politician under such conditions?

  37. René Henri Pasche

    fact is that Germany d o e s economically dominate Europe and thus also bigger parts of the world. The question is: does she misuse her strong economical position for nationalistic aims only or behave as a real European leader with special obligations in respect to other European countries, esp. the smaller ones.

  38. You are out of sync with reality. If you wouldnt accept the eastern Europeans into EU, you would fell apart 20 years ago. The problem of your capitalism was/is the debt-based growth! By destroying the RVHP (the eastern form of EU) and by incorporating its members you gained needed time, you gained new customers, new territories to export into. If I remember it correctly, the Austria for example gained several tenth of thousands new labor positions thanks to their exports into what was former Czecho-Slovakia. What do you think was the cost of it? I can tell you: tenth of thousands of unemployees in our countries. Take Slovakia for example: we experienced the unemployment rate reaching 25 percent in the 90-ties and total destruction of certain segments of industry. Did someone of you, mighty, democratic, western socialists help us? No one. We had to pass through it. When our banks collapsed, we had to recapitalize them with our own money, that is one of the reasons why our present debt to GDP ratio is more than 50pc while it was under 10pc in the beginning of 90ties. And you have the courage to ask us for help now? To expect our solidarity? Why should we help you? Give me one reason! It is ironic, you know, for in certain way what you Westerners have done to eastern Europe 20 years ago has finally “backfired” on you. There is no more territory to expand into, there are no more customers to exploit: the living on loans has come to an end!

  39. My opinion is the French simply underestimated the Germans. In our countries some have been suprised, that the France has totally ignored the eastern Europe for example. Well, the Germans didnt. By expanding their influence into the central and eastern Europe they effectively shifted the balance in the former EU. They(!) became the centerpoint of Europe. Whether it was deliberate or an “accident” is irrelevant at this point.

  40. ephilant: I very much appretiate your contribution for the high level of debate in this blog. Regarding this zpecific point, however, I cannot follow you. Not all politician are equal. Not all political organizations are equally exposed to ill practices. Confidence is a very scarce value but is possible
    8

  41. keeptalkinggreece

    how many ex communist countries were freed in the 90’s? the ‘Westerners’ could not help, that’s true. much too many countries, much to many people. sis you ask for Germany’s and EU’s help? so now is revenge time?

  42. Germany has already shifted its exports focus from Europe to outside Europe cause of exposure to PIIGS. So they focus on the rest of the world while telling the rest of Europe what to do.

  43. The tragedy of Europe is that sooner or later some country wants to dominate others. That happened throughout history: “accept our system, it is good for you”. Same shit now. Germany is telling others to accept ‘their system’.

  44. Giaourti Giaourtaki

    Only the bosses not the people, Poland is just 80 kilometres away from Berlin but for average Berliners Athens, Rome and Istanbul is much closer and seeing the actual crisis they are right as Eastern European countries refuse European solidarity for refugees because they hope for pogroms in Germoney and in the south.

  45. Giaourti Giaourtaki

    The idea is even older, Keynes had to rework on his theories because of it, and in the 3rd Reich there were different economic factions but from 1942 on it all changed into war-economy with brutal exploitation of the Balkans and then beside the common currency the “Reichskassenschein” became very important as pirate-money to rip-off the people.

  46. Giaourti Giaourtaki

    But Greece is an old member, without Junta she would have joined end of the sixties. Although I’m not sure if the people really think that way I can’t stand this Eastern European attitude, as it reminds me of new tenants who help the greedy landlord to get rid off the old tenants. If they would have joined too in 1981…

  47. No, it is not about revenge. The only thing people in my country want is to live at least slightly better this year than they lived last year. Slightly better next year than they are living now. And so on. Average wage in Slovakia is 837 euros. The most often paid salary is about 550 – 600 euros. The average rent is about 430 euros. Unemployment at about 11,5pc.
    Now, this is the situation: we have already taken garanties for loans to Greece which rise to cca 4,1pc of GDP. I dont remember the correct number, it is about 1,5 bilion euros. It is enormous amount of money in Slovakia. For example, just today, few hours ago a big investment has been announced: Jaguar Land Rover will build its factory in Slovakia. Investment: 1,5 bilion euros.
    The garanties we have taken are already summed up in our debt to GDP ratio, which is currently under 53pc. Do you think we wouldnt know what to do with additional 1,5 bilion euros??? Surely, we would…now they are gone. We are in debt and we never even saw the money!!!
    Do you think it is possible in such situation for any politician in Slovakia to say:”Hey, look, we are gonna write-off some debt to Greece because IMF told us so…”? Never gonna happen. Politically impossible. What is possible however would by the debt write-off after your Grexit. Because the public would then accept it – for you would be adequately “penalized” by leaving euro. Such thing would by politically acceptable. And that is what your government needs to understand. Debt-write off is not gonna happen, no in the amount suggested by IMF and not with Greece in eurozone. Maybe some loan prolongation or rate lowering. What I think however, in your current situation it would be better for Greece to leave the euro. In such case you would at least have a prospect of coming out of the debt spirale in the long term. Inside the euro – i dont know.

  48. keeptalkinggreece

    of course the new ex communist tenants want to get it of everything that reminds them of communist ‘values’ and ‘common houses for the people’

  49. keeptalkinggreece

    average salary 500-600 and average rent 450? of course, that’s the free market economy you longed for. and neo-liberalism. but don’t blame Greece for this. bTW: how people pay utilities, heating oil, groceries and cover other needs if only 150euro available?

  50. Well, I probably didnt use the correct words. Once more: average wage 837 euros, the wage obtained in most cases 550 – 600 euros, average rent (what pensioners get each month from state) 430 euros. And just few days ago a poll has been published: most Slovaks are able to spare 20 – 50 euros each month. Yes, Slovakia is by all standards what you would call a poor country. But we are moving ahead and in 20 years since gaining independence we are practically with the Czechs (they were always the richer ones in the our unified state).
    And now what you didnt understand: WE ARE BLAMING NO ONE! We just refuse to be solidary and collective with the Greeks. I would say it is a perfectly legitimate (and understandable) attitude.

  51. Giaourti Giaourtaki

    So first you have to work in Germoney for decades as “Gastarbeiter” and then you’ll end up like Greece, Italy and Spain where 80% don’t have to pay rent as they were working their asses off, sometimes with two jobs full-time, to get their families own houses or flats.
    But before that you should ask the ECB for the profits; so far 6 billion Euros interest was earned from the loans “that never get repaid”
    But before telling Greece to leave the Eurozone – the debts would multiply enormous and there is no legal terms to cut anything as therefore the Troika in 2012 let Greece subscribe to British law and not even brother Schäuble can change this – one should look into ones own books as to be forced to leave the EU is more possible for states that treat their Gypsies like shit

  52. Giaourti Giaourtaki

    There are parties whose members of parliament don’t take it all and give the rest to anti-fascist, humanitarian help and human rights groups.

  53. At least in the relationship sith the Portuguese government I heard Schauble using a nationalist argument – he mentioned the unpopularity of baillouts bpin Germany. I dont blame Schauble of doing so, I just regret others of not doing the same.

  54. keeptalkinggreece

    I still don’t understand this: ‘average rent (what pensioners get each month from state) 430 euros.’ You mean ‘pension’ – Rente in German?

  55. The decent & ciean people.

  56. …and the first step is to get rid of immunity Iaws for parIiamentarisans – an invitation to crime!

  57. The 6 eastern countries were Iet into the EU on the insistence of Germany, Germany wanted a buffer zone in its backyard and Iebensraum.

  58. The EU was an extension of the Bretton Woods Institutions – IMF, WorId Bank and GATT – and NATO, and as such was designed for US benefit in the US’s geo-strategic projection ‘space’ i.e. western Europe.

    It has proceeded in 2 distinct and even contradictory phases [1] 195o-1989 and [2] 1989 onwards, with the EEC, EU, Maastricht & Iisbon Treaties, Schengen and huge enlargement, almost tripping its size. In the second phase NATO membership has become a precondition of EU membership and NATO has morphed from a defensive security aIIiance to an aggressive war machine ignoring international Iaw and waging iIIegaI war on 3 continents over 25 years i.e. Europe, Asia and Africa.

    The EU is created, dominated and occupied by a foreign non-European power, bIue fIags and Ode to Joy notwithstanding. It is Europe’s nightmare, both the free & unfree parts of it.

  59. More sharks in the Mediterranean too!

  60. That was 1974 I believe

  61. At least one thing we can be sure of, is that the current shower we have will not be willing to do so. And how bad is that? There are many. many people who would be able, capable and willing to do the job, in fact, I would bet that right now there are more than enough unemployed people in Greece who would do a much better job at governing the country than the politician pretending to do so right now… The difference my frined is that instead of people coming from a long line of “career politicians”, you end up with politicians who have the experience of living the result of politics instead of wasting half their time in politics protecting themselves from the effects of the policies they impose on others. The minimum wage being one of these…I will also bet that a house-wife, struggling for the last few years to make her budget meet, will do a much better job in developing and implementing practical, useful financial policies and measures than the hihgly paid “right candidates” right now do. She is also far more qualified than e.g. Osborne or Dijsselbloem would ever be…
    As a further measure to ensure practical politicians insted of career politicians, I would also suggest that the people put the measure in place that politicians cannot serve more than two terms in ANY political capacity, at any level. This would effectively stop them from building up their powerhouse from where position abuse starts…

  62. keeptalkinggreece

    …who are swallowed by the corrupt system, the moment they are elected somewhere.

  63. I am not that good in german so I write down all translations from my dictionary: rent, reditus, pension, retired pay, retirement, obventio, contributory pension. Hopefully it helps…

  64. It is really funny to speak about 6 bilions euros hidden somewhere in the ECB while in the same time your government is negotiating another 86 bilions euros in loans! It seems we both live in different universe.
    “Brother” Schauble made you a straight offer: Grexit followed by international creditors conference with 50pc haircut promise. Now, I have seen the calculations (hypothetical) that assumed devaluation of new drachma would reach about 30 – 50pc and you would end up with the same amount of debt. The critical point is that devaluated drachma would give you competitivness (you currently dont have it) and the chance of ending austerity in the long term.
    To your “gypsy” remark: I could discuss this topic for hours for I know the slovak reality and you dont! Let me put it like this: we will be very glad if someone from the “west” shows us how we should treat them in order to incorporate them into our sociaty succesfully. So far no one introduced any kind of “recipe” to do it. And we are in the EU since 2004. Eleven years. But the crucial point is we are discussing the eurozone and that is a financal club and as long as we repay our loans, keep deficit at bay and lower our debts everyone is going to by happy with us. You got the point?

  65. According to your logic the best doctor would be someone who is beeing ill often, the best policeman would be someone from whom everything has been stolen and the best firefighter would be a person who lost everything to fire. Well, this really is hard to dispute…

  66. keeptalkinggreece

    I see. so in English it is: pension! while ‘rent’ is what one pays monthly when rents a home/shop etc

  67. Apart from your bizarrely incorrect terminology, the figures mean nothing outside of the national context. What matters is how far the money goes, what is the quality of life. And even that is not so easily comparable with other countries: if there is a wide range of household or personal incomes, then the average may mean nothing at all.

    As for blaming people, whom would you blame? Greece is in its mess owing to eurozone membership and the collapse of international banking in 2009 — along with high indebtedness that its useless politicians engaged in. There are clear responsibilities here, and the ordinary Greek is not part of that. Yet it is ordinary Greeks who are being made to pay, while the rich have taken their money to German and Swiss banks. Germany benefits from this massively, while Greece suffers.

    As for lack of solidarity, i have posted elsewhere on this blog about that. Most of the former Societ bloc have become right wing and selfish countries; we expect nothing better from you, and should never have allowed you into the E&U. You should remain in the Sovjet zone. where your fucked up mentality would be kept under control.

  68. If you think that Schaeuble is capable of making a straight offer, you need to consult a psychiatrist. And your points about repaying loans are just Troika propaganda. Greece raised money on bond issues, and the Germans have taken over the debt to save their own banks. That was an enforced loan — like the money the Nazis took from Greece in the 1940s.

  69. Germany has been allowed to dominate Europe yet again. It is clear to outside commentators that the situation is out of control and we need to come down hard on the new Nazi ideology. Of course, there are all these East European bitches of Germany, begging to serve their master in the hope of a few crumbs.

  70. René Henri Pasche

    We understand each other perfectly. Transatlantic partnership transformed into US-imperialism.

  71. René Henri Pasche

    And it was Mr. Kohl and his Austrian friend Mr. Mock that liquidated Jugoslavia. The position of the US was unclear at the beginning of the crisis, it seems, but later on they took the lead, being happy that NATO could play a new role in Europe after the end of the cold war.

  72. Thank you.

  73. Joe this was general comment meaning, yes Germans made money on borrowing during crisis in EU, but they at the same time lost money on selling. Anotherwords the article may be completely wrong if we take into account more than just borrowing.

  74. keeptalkinggreece

    @Xenos, next time you directly attack & insult other commentators, you’re out!

  75. keeptalkinggreece

    too bad Jugoslavia had no oil

  76. Not exactly, but according to your logic the position rather than the ability of the person filling the position justifies the ridiculous wage… Ever wonder why a politician with a background in reading modern history and some dabbling in journalism can become Chancellor of the Exchequer in the UK? Ever wonder why a politician can blatantly lie about his qualifications and still become minister of Finance of The N etherlands and chairman of the Eurogroup? Or ever wonder why a politician can be caught red-handed accepting bribes and still become minister of finance of Germany? Suitable for the job or having the right connections?
    But if you want to go there with your analogy, the best doctor is the doctor who keeps his/her patients naturally healthy rather than the one who gets rich by selling pills to sick patients who believe him when he sys these will make them better, while in reality making them even sicker so they have to buy more pills…. The best policeman is the policeman who instinctively knows right from wrong and can adjust to the circumstances at hand rather than “apply the rules”, and the best fire-fighter is he who can prevent fire rather than fight it. How do any of those qualties tally with ANY politician anywhere.

  77. Giaourti Giaourtaki

    Don’t forget that every new EU-member only gets the membership if they make sure to join the Euro-zone later on.

  78. Giaourti Giaourtaki

    Nothing of these 6 billion is “hidden”, Germoney has her 2.4 billion share of it and took of this their last 542 million profit to co-finance the bridge-loan in July. Also your 86 billion is totally wrong as minimum 10.9 bln for banks recapitalization and 5.3 bln in loans were not used from the old packages, also it will be “up to 86 billion” only because the Troika wants to recapitalize the Greek banks with 10 bln more than Tsipras thinks is necessary, so at this point the package is only 60 bln strong.
    Schäuble can’t announce anything as said it’s illegal, no “haircut”, no “bailout” without the pre-condition of “under British Law”, so every single lender can sue Greece in London or Washington.
    In Greece are living 300.000 Roma, some in squalid situations, sometimes problems arise but far from headlines like from Slovakia or Hungary, also thousands of Greek Roma living in Germany, Belgium, aso ever heard of any problems?

  79. Giaourti Giaourtaki

    So now we finally know why the Czechs play better hockey

  80. I would argue that statment is more of a political nature then nationalist. Last bailout vote about 60 CDU parlamentarians vote no, plus there were times in the last government when merkel(like tsipras in the last weeks) did not have her own majority/needed opposition votes. these things, in the long run, undermine a party/government leaders authority/power and therefore are obviously a problem for them.

  81. René Henri Pasche

    Your premis is that Russia is still a European country. But since the Ukrainian crisis and according to the view of old and new geo-politicians in Germany, Poland, US and other countries the political frontiers of Europe end in the east where Russia begins. You may already find world-maps that mention the Ukrain in big letters and Russia in small ones behind the Ural.

  82. Giaourti Giaourtaki

    What about jellyfish that come with the giant ships that don’t need to stop in the Mediterranean any more except from getting ballast water off?
    May be the reasons behind the plans of Cosco regarding their fast track freight trains from Pirea to Belgrade and also the planned harbours in the south of Crete and in western Greece

  83. Politicians are bought before they ever get to a position of power in politics. The most perfect example of this is the US presidential elections which have elevated bribery to the status of policy. The way it works is simple. Various interest groups give “donations”, and when “their man” becomes president, it’s payback time. Hence Bush promptly organising the war in Iraq, the “war on terrorism” etc. for his donors. The very same thing happens to politicians everywhere. Be it at parochial level in rural Grece or Portugal, at national level anywhere, or International level. Another prime example is our friend JC Junker, the man who lies when the going gets tough. The exposures made in Luxleaks are not unrelated to his position of power within the EU. In fact, I would argue they are the reason he is there…
    This can to a certain extent be curtailed by putting a limit on the political life of any candidate, iow, make it impossible to turn politics into a career. Going into politics is a service to ones country, nothing more, nothing less. The service is doing your best to improve the country so that ALL within that country have a better life. Not just more profit for your sponsors…
    The second, and most important way to curtail this is to hold politicians accountable for their actions. No statutory limits for them. They accept the responsibility by putting themselves forward for election, so stick them to it. And like all others, hurt them where it hurts most when they don’t perform as they should, ie. in their pocket.
    Not all political organisations are equally exposed to ill practices. That I agree with. But… all polticial organisations ARE engaged in ill practices, one way or the other. There is no denying that. I’ve lived in almost every country in Europe during my life
    (sdmittedly not in Portugal), and have yet to come across an honest politician. It’s simply a non existing species. Nobody gets into politics where it matters unles they have been bought by “vested interests”. That is the sad consequence of the elcctorate abdicating its responsibility to hold these guys to account. There is more to “democracy” than the 1.6 seconds it takes to tick a ballot box. And as long as the electorate does not stand up and takes it responsibility, we will be rewarded with corruption at the highest level.

  84. Oh, so you have 300.000 gypsies in Greece and no problems with them. Awesome!!! Lets think about it, ok: one reason of this “miracle” could be that you are the mighty, democratic, socialist westerners. The second one could be the difference between country of 11 million habitants having 300.000 gypsies and country of 5,3 million habitants having 500.000 gypsies. What do you think now – which alternative is the right one? I know – hard choice.
    And I am really “happy” that instead of taking additional 86 billion euros of garanties for your country, we (and the rest of eurozone) will have to take “only” 60 billion euros of garanties. Perhaps, i will celebrate this evening…

  85. I dont have a problem with surrendering part of german sovereignity so long as its delegated to other democratic institutions meaning parliaments and referendums on a european or hopefully one day a world wide scale.
    NSA is certainly not part of that and in so far the reaction or rather nonreaction of my government is a clear failure. In fact I looked up the definition treason due to recent events and I d very much say that behaviour fits.
    Russia on the other hand might be independent, but it also doesnt have any democratic tradition on national scale, its government is repressive towards minorities, very much nationalistic, engages in useless and unnecessary war and uses a crude but extensive propaganda.
    So all in all I still prefer us.

  86. And since those are the ones we want in office suppose for a second we gotthose people, wouldnt you want them to be properly paid because a. theyd deserve it and b. they should spend their time worrying about the country and not their finances.
    Now that doesnt doesnt mean they should live a life in pure luxury, but for a job where Id expect 60h+ per week 5-10 times national average income isnt a problem.
    Lowering politicians incomes wont help the problem. Where corruption exists it needs to be rooted out by transparency of public institutions and an active media, so that politicians engaging in it wont get reelected, or in very severe cases get prosecuted.

  87. Giaourti Giaourtaki

    It’s very simple, in the beginning just like Yugoslavian Roma many Greek Roma looking for jobs in Germoney didn’t tell that they are Roma and if they wouldn’t have survived the holocaust you wouldn’t have any problems with their existence I guess and the same reason why you didn’t join the EU in 1981 but have some big mouth against Greece now is the same reason why Sinti and Roma didn’t were a problem under state-capitalism.

  88. “and have yet to come across an honest politician. It’s simply a non existing species”
    I have met some, mostly on local level though you are right with the rest of the analysis, because those politicians that stay honest sooner or later hit a ceiling so most of the actual decision making is in the hands of special interests.

  89. @KeepTalking: I made an attack on the mentality of rather a lot of the citizens in Slovakia and elsewhere in the East. I do not consider my commments to be a personal attack on anyone — or is criticism only allowed by politicians in your way of thinking? We are talking here about the widespread nonsense and propaganda that dominates much of the media. If you do not wish to have my contributions, I will not waste my time posting.

  90. Giaourti Giaourtaki

    Funny enough I forget that 35 billion of this “86” are from the EU Structural funds and also in 2013 Greece didn’t take 13 billion of these because she didn’t have the 15% for the obliged co-finance. May you be so kind and make some demonstrations in your central square and tell your government to ask the EU to get your money from these funds?

  91. keeptalkinggreece

    @Xenos, when you write “You should remain … where your fucked up mentality …” it’s personal

  92. or in very severe cases get prosecuted.

    Why only in very severe cases? this is simply endorsing coruption, the only difficulty you have with it is the level of acceptability… When does corruption become unacceptable? 1 million, 10 million,… 1 hungry person, 3 million hungry people, 200,000 refugees,…100,000 DM? Where do you draw the line?

  93. @KeepTalking: no, it’s you (plural). Not my fault that we cannot use “thou” in English so the distinction between singular and plural is based on context and syntax…

  94. keeptalkinggreece

    @xenos: when I write, “You” in a post it’s “2nd person plural’ but when I write ‘you’ when replying to a comment is “2nd person singular.” YOU know how semantics work on internet. Distinctions not easy to see. See also ‘irony and sarcasm’,for example.We have had enough of F-words and Whatever-words in this comments section in the last month. No?

  95. Im not endorsing corruption, but even in the best of systems theres a difference between justice and law. So there will always be cases that arent that clear cut, where there is not enough evidence for a conviction in a court of law, because those(rightly) have strong standards. In such a case it might not be very satsifactory to “only” see them kicked out of office via election but it does solve the actual problem.

  96. @KT: that is not how I use my native language. When I reply to an individual who is talking about his country and its stupid ideas, “you” is plural.

  97. What you dont understand is this: You, Germans, are still(!) the occupied nation. I know you have never read it, I know you have never heard of it and I know no one ever told you something like that. All those US military bases which are supposed to protect you are in fact the remnants of postwar occupation of Germany. This is something the military experts say only by certain occasions and it is understandable: the public opinion would never accept such “narrative”. It is much more comfortable to believe that you have this “fantastic” military alliance called NATO (yeah, as we do) than to know you are simply “controlled territory”. The same goes for Japan, for example. And it is one of reasons why Russians are so upset about pulling back their forces from occupied eastern Europe 20 years ago. Because there was no reciprocity from the side of USA. And so one victorious army of WW2 kept its territorial gains while the other retreated!
    Ad: Russia – unlike (probably) you I am able to follow russian medias on the daily basis and rest assured: considering their (russian) civilizational standards, history and cultural background their land is totally OK! On the other side, if you knew, the Russians are ok, how could you (in Germany) hate them or (thats even better, you know) to be afraid of them. Because thats the goal! To separate you – Germans, from Russia. That is, my friend, the only coalition the Washington is really afraid of.
    Oh, I would forget: you will probably hold me for crazy, I know.

  98. I wonder about your intensive need to discuss the topic of “gypsies”. Since I dont share it I will let you alone…have a nice day.

  99. keeptalkinggreece

    of course, Germany is afraid of Russia, just as some Baltic countries or Finland. I don’t know about ex-communist Central Europe countries. and yes there was no reciprocrisy form USA 20 years ago because the Russians had f***ed up with communism model, because they were unable to reform and the model was worn out. therefore no need for USA to do something equivalent. And despite the fact, that Russia went ‘capitalist’ 25 yrs ago, it still haunts the spirit of the so-called ‘free world’.

  100. Germany was not afraid of Russia 5 years ago. In fact the bilateral relations of Germany and Russia were at its peak! Massive investments in both countries, direct gas connection bypassing Poland etc. Therefore it was neccessary to do a coup d’etat in Ukraine to provoke Russia into open military actions in its western neighbour. Fortunately Putin didnt jump on the hook. But instead of explaining it to you I will give you this link here:

    youtube.com/watch?v=NFmfwqzWmHk

    Nothing new to anyone interested in geopolitics. If you dont know who is that nice looking gentleman in front of camera, I will gladly give you some details. Summary: if you are interested in the answer who is the “free world” nowadays – the answer si simple. IT IS NOT US!!!

  101. In such a case it might not be very satsifactory to “only” see them kicked out of office via election but it does solve the actual problem.

    Does it? Can we have some examples maybe… Tony Blair, George Bush, Bertie Ahern, Wolfie Schaueble, Paul VandenBoeynants, Karel van Miert, … Kicking them out of office certainly did not solve any problems regarding these guys…

  102. Germany is not a occupied nation, and yes I have heard this before.
    Of course the US as the only superpower at this point in history is projecting its power(see NSA) but you cant call it an occupation when the cities with US bases dread nothing more then them leaving because it will wreck their local economy(also theyre our allies not our enemies).

    I have massive problems with many things the US do in this world, and it pains me to see how their elections are heavyly influenced by legal bribery aka. pac-money, but they do have a democratic system and even more important democratic values instilled in thier people, which means every few years they get to reinvent themselves, so I have hope.

    Russia doesnt, they might have elections, but there has never been a change in power due to elections which is the litmus test for democratic governments.
    Russian media wise. I dont speak russia so no i cant follow directly. I watch RT sometimes though, I notice that independent journalists(as wellas the few opposition people) get harassed, and long before anyone reported that they employ thousands of people as internet trolls to manipulate public discussion, I noticed groups of people at certain newssides crudly trying to distort facts adn figures inn such a way that you notice a clear agenda(if you follow indiviual commenters it gets clear really fast who is commenting and who is writing propaganda). So no I dont trust their government, heck I dont trust my own government and yet they are worlds apart.
    What Im afraid of is not so much the Russian people and more a regime that seems to me is acting like it NEEDS to be a superpower again, yet its anything but except militarily.

    “considering their (russian) civilizational standards”

    what does that mean?

  103. “Fortunately Putin didnt jump on the hook. ”
    Really he DIDNT?????

    This whole coup d’etat idea is bs. Im not saying CIA doesnt have a vested interest in Ukraine going pro west instead of pro russia, but this wasnt done against the ukrainian people.
    No matter outside influence, be it amerifcan or russian the true reason for this is much much simpler.
    Polish and Ukrainian GDP/capita in 1990 about 2000/2000, nowadays its about 13k/4k. So no wonder the majority of people want to look west.

    Btw. the whole Krim refrendum showed who little Putin cares about what the people have to say/ democratic legitimacy. He could have easily done it correctly, with enough preparation for a proper referendum, without influencing the media or letting troops patrol in the street and finally with a lot of international election inspectors. He still wouldve won the Krim by a huge margin with the added bonus of the westerners having to accept it as a democratic decision. But he doesnt see any value whatsoever in an electorate(or the media) voicing opinion.

  104. “When I reply to an individual who is talking about his country and its stupid ideas, “you” is plural.”

    Then my dear Xenos

    you should stop pretending that your are any good at football!

    😉

  105. Blair Wolfie and Bush II WERENT kicked out of office(wolfie was for a time and it ruined his chances to become chancellor but he came back soon), now they might have been catastrophies in our minds, but they did have huge support in their constituency. So the problem is more with the electorate not so much the law.

  106. As for the actual political damage they did, that cant be fixed by prosectuion or loss of office, but only by their successors.

  107. Giaourti Giaourtaki

    No democracy for dirty squatters: Crimea belongs to the Crimean Tartars and the Crimean Greeks just like Amerikkka belongs to the American Indians – Indian Land For Indian People, the HOMELAND SECURITY is fighting terrorism since 1492

  108. Giaourti Giaourtaki

    Geopoltics for Greek airforces looks like this, my friend: 100.000 Greeks live in constant danger in the area of Mariupoli, endangered by Ukrainian and Russian nazionalist militias and the joke is going round that Kammenos got the OK from Washington AND from Moscow to bomb them all.
    But the main problem is that the East of Ukraine is no good area for nationalist bullshit as it was the location for the biggest anarchist uprising in world history, exterminated in the end by the “Red Army” of Trotzki but in lying about it since 100 years “communists”, fascists, democrats, Russians and Ukrainians all collaborate perfect but in the end proles will take revenge as this is exactly what Russians and Ukrainians discuss while boozing in Chalkidiki

  109. I am not going to persuade you. I dont need it. Just a few words about that nice guy in front of camera. He is founder and director af STRATGOR. It is a private company producing analytic reports for the needs of bussiness investors. According to some reports they emplye former secret service specialists in many countries. There are also rumours they are in fact a state owned company and the entire bussiness plan is just a cover. One thing is for sure: several months ago that mister traveled through the countries of east Europe meeting the high government officials. Several years ago he promoted the concept of so called “Intermarium” which is now effectively being implemented. Do you need to believe in good “west” and “evil” Putin? Well, your choice. I dont believe in fairy tales. I am already too old for it. Good evening…

  110. It does mean that you cant implement the democracy to each and every country. Russia will never be democratic in the sense you accept as “normal”. Either you accept it or you dont. Country not being democratic doesnt mean the people living there are not free. It doesnt mean their life is not civilised, it doesnt mean they have no moral and cultural values.
    I will not comment the rest of your reply, because partly it is a typical “stockholm syndrome” (no offense) and partly it is stereotypes. So let us both agree on that we dont agree and wish one another good evening.

  111. “It doesnt mean their life is not civilised, it doesnt mean they have no moral and cultural values.”
    True, but it does mean that youre not open to say as you want, that corrupt elites can do as they please(as it is in other countries) WITHOUT any checks and balances. USA has crappy politicals class yet the system is able to change, see gay marriage/end of discrimination, compare that to how they are treated in Russia(with support from official sides because gays give a nice distraction.

    You say Russia will never be democratic, Id say at best its a long way of because you cant impose it top down, it needs to grown from society.
    Then again that system will collapse at some point be it in 3 years or in 30, same reason why the ukrainians had enough, a system like that hardly inspires growth and democracy aside noones is happy when your neighbors are living in riches you only dream of.

  112. René Henri Pasche

    How do you know? “The devine accident” can happen everywhere along the coastal-approaches, even in Greece and Turkey as it seems.