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Tuesday, January 23, 2018

A Plea For Exit From The Eurozone (And The EU As Well!)!

Here is a passionate plea for Greece to exit the Eurozone (and the EU as well): "Greece - Convenient Victim Or Complacent Masochist?" The author has quite a resume:

Peter Koenig is an economist and geopolitical analyst. He is also a former World Bank staff and worked extensively around the world in the fields of environment and water resources. He lectures at universities in the US, Europe and South America. He writes regularly for Global Research, ICH, RT, Sputnik, PressTV, The 21st Century (China), TeleSUR, The Vineyard of The Saker Blog, and other internet sites. He is the author of Implosion – An Economic Thriller about War, Environmental Destruction and Corporate Greed – fiction based on facts and on 30 years of World Bank experience around the globe. He is also a co-author of The World Order and Revolution! – Essays from the Resistance.

His conclusion is as follows:

"If Greece is not seizing this last-ditch opportunity to exit the euro and to exit the EU, to literally safe her people’s skin, one might legitimately ask, has Greece become a convenient victim, subservient to its own elite and the Brussels-Washington masters, or is she simply masochistically enjoying her misery, borne, incidentally, by 80% of her population?"

26 comments:

  1. @ Klaus.
    You do have a weird sense of humor (I know, it takes one to know one), and the comments were gold nuggets. I have never before been presented with so many conspiracies, Zionists, traitors, brain washers, blackmailers, warmongers, usurpers, Greek haters and robber barons, in such a short time.
    Lennard.

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    1. Well, maybe a real moment of truth (like Grexit and leaving the EU) is the best way to disavow conspiracies, Zionists, traitors, brain washers, blackmailers, warmongers, usurpers, Greek haters and robber barons...

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  2. @ Klaus.
    No, Grexit won't do that.
    I quite agree with the author that Greece should leave EU, but he says Greece was forced into, or assumed, their victimhood in the EU, thereby conveniently ignoring the rest of modern Greek history.
    If you are unhappy with yourself, you can change partner or house as frequently as you please, you will still be unhappy.
    Lennard.

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    1. How profound! You belong right there with the rest of those commentators...

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  3. The EU is already in such a stage of disintegration that it makes no sense to leave it. What makes sense is pretending to be part of the EU to ensure that the bloody project meets a painful death. So Greece's mission is to pay back the EU for all the misery and unhappiness the EU bestowed on Greece but in multiples. 10 times would be a good target to shoot for; 20 times more misery is even better.

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  4. Let them have a referendum, a proper binding one for a change. Is there anyone out there who believes the Greeks would really be so suicidal to vote to leave the EZ and the EU? Come on.

    Urs

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    1. Germany is clearly in the cross-hairs. It was the only EU state singled out for criticism in the US Treasury’s latest report on currency manipulation. “Germany’s bilateral trade surplus with the US is very sizable and a matter of concern. Germany has a responsibility as the fourth-largest economy globally to contribute to more balanced demand growth and to more balanced trade flows,” it said.

      The country’s surplus is the biggest in the world in absolute terms at $287bn in 2017 – far ahead of China – and has been above 8pc of GDP for several years. This is in clear breach of eurozone rules on "macro-imbalances", although nothing is ever done about it.

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    2. I wonder what California's current account balance is with the rest of the US as well as with the world. Can anyone find out?

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    3. Der Punkt, mein Liebling aus Österreich, ist die ungebundene deutsche Heuchelei. While shameless Germany was acusing Greece of cooking the books, it appears that Germany is a Master Chef in book cooking.

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    4. I presume you are referring to the Telegraph article which is hidden behind a paywall, so I cannot comment. Perhaps you can send a summary.

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    5. You can read the same here:

      https://www.express.co.uk/news/world/912290/Donald-Trump-European-Union-Germany-Angela-Merkel-trade-surplus-sanctions-USA-trading

      Berlin’s annual trade surplus could be as high as €80billion (£70billion) which has encouraged Professor Heiner Flassbeck, the country’s former state-secretary of finance, to declare that Angela Merkel is “cooking the books”.

      Prof Flassbeck accused Germany of "cooking the books so that the surplus does not look as if it is increasing" as Mrs Merkel's nation was accused of understating the true size of its current trade surplus in a bid to deflect growing criticism from around the world.

      The US President last year said Germany was “very bad on trade” as he pointed at the “million of cars” Germany sold to the US.

      The President was reported as saying at the time: “Terrible. We will stop this."

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  5. C'mon, nothing is ever binding in Greece.

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  6. Why would the current account of California be of any interest. California's GDP is primarily made of consumption + government spending/purchase (of which a prime component is military aviation)+ investment. The current account is the factor of least importance because all the other 3 components(consumption, government spnding and investment) are oversized.

    The best I can offer you on the subject is a free lecture from a top California school:

    https://eml.berkeley.edu//~obstfeld/182_sp06/chapter12.pdf

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    1. Why California? Because my guess - but only a guess! - is that California probably has a huge current account surplus with the rest of the US as well as with the world. They have enormous IT exports, movie exports, manufacturing exports, etc. and they have tremendous tourism. So it would be in a similar situation within the US as Germany is within the EZ. And if it's not California, some other state will fit the criteria (Texas perhaps?). It works for the US because they have an adjustment instrument - mobility of labor.

      The current account is a factor for EVERYONE, even for each individual person. The individual's current account is his revenues vs. expenses. If expenses exceed revenues, he has to either (a) borrow (i. e. outside debt) or (b) make an inheritance (i. e. outside/foreign investment). The importance of the current account within a country is well demonstrated in Germany: the East runs deficits which can only work because the West makes transfers (and people migrate from East to West).

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  7. Why California?

    My guess is CA has a serious current account deficit. Once I saw a map of the US which showed which country's GDP each state approximated. CA was the equivalent of France's GDP but for half the population. So CA was twice as productive as France:

    http://www.businessinsider.com/map-renames-us-states-with-country-generating-same-gdp-2016-6

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    1. Your guess may be right but I have trouble seeing it that way because California should have a large trade surplus (military production, etc.) and a very positive balance in services (tourism, IT, etc.). California may import a lot, too, but I am not so sure that imports can exceed the above huge surpluses. If my assumption is correct, and if California left the US dollar zone, its new currency would explode and bring the current account into balance. Put differently, as long as they are in the US dollar zone, they are heavily subsidized and create imbalances within the US dollar zone. Just like Germany within the EZ.

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    2. This is only one port but it shows you what goes on in terms of trade. My guess is that CA is leaking serious trade deficits (look at the total US trade numbers shown in the same page).

      https://www.ustradenumbers.com/ports/port/port-of-los-angeles/

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    3. Btw, and since our topic is Greece the same map of World Trade shows that Greece is seriously leaking trade deficits:

      Greece
      Current Rank: #67
      November 2017 YTD: $47.3 million
      Total Imports YTD: $42.9 million
      Total Exports YTD: $4.4 million

      Deficit: $38.5 million
      Percent Change: 15%
      Dollar Change: $6.3 million

      P.S. I am assuming these are numbers vis-a-vis the Port of LA for Greece, otherwise they make no sense.

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    4. What Greece's trade with the LA port has to do with our issue escapes my imagination.

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  8. I kind of doubt that CA whose main trading partner is China could ever have current account surplus:

    http://www.businessinsider.com/state-and-country-trade-maps-2015-7

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    1. Remember that my key point was/is my assumption that California has a substantial current account surplus with the other US states, i. e. with the other members of the US dollar currency zone which they all belong to. That would put CA in a similar position as Germany within the EZ. I have requested information from the Fed in San Francisco and NYC but, regrettably, they do not provide it.

      Regarding CA's overall current account balance (i. e. including the rest of the world), your guess is as good as mine.

      Again, the issue in the blog is Greece and the Eurozone. I agree that Germany's current account surplus within the Euzozone is not a good thing for the Eurozone. All I tried to point out that the German case is not unique.

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  9. On politics alone the parallel between CA and Germany is uber inappropriate. CA is a deeply democratic, liberal state with let's say socialist politics in terms of EU standards. Germany's traditions on the other hand are uber fascist and when it comes to trade are pure Nazi preditory type.

    I get your point of what a large economy might have unique characteristics but to compare Californians with Germans is really extreme.

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  10. It seems to me that the knives are out and this will affect Greece and the rest of the EU:

    https://www.express.co.uk/news/world/913681/Donald-trump-us-tax-reforms-germany-most-expensive-enemy-magazine-deutsche-bank

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  11. How many times have we heard here in the comments section that the end is near for the northerners or - to be more precise - the germans because the Americans will come and punish them. And time and time again nothing happens.
    How do you call people who make the same mistake over and over again? I don’t dare to put the word here that I use to qualify them.

    Urs

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    1. No one will "come and punish the germans". Once the Europeans discover what a raw deal they got, they will do what needs to be done to the "germans" all by themselves.

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    2. Don’t forget: 18:1. Eighteen EZ member states against Greece. None of your dreamt up Syriza friends took your side. Not a single one. So much for your delusions.
      Urs

      Urs

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