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Greece has never had anything but austerity.
by Upstate NY on Tue Nov 8th, 2011 at 10:48:22 AM EST
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Well, I heard the Greek 1% is not so bad off. Somebody needs to buy the villas, yachts, and apocryphal Porsches.
by asdf on Tue Nov 8th, 2011 at 11:31:48 AM EST
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In Greece's, it's always been about the 10%.
by Upstate NY on Tue Nov 8th, 2011 at 11:34:45 AM EST
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Which is really the basic problem for the country. If the elite paid its taxes and abstained from corruption, the man in street would as well. And then you wouldn't need austerity to balance the budget.

Peak oil is not an energy crisis. It is a liquid fuel crisis.
by Starvid on Wed Nov 9th, 2011 at 05:37:56 PM EST
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But, the fact is, Greece collects 40% of GDP in taxes. It has very high taxes paid by a disproportionate amount of its citizens. I keep seeing Greek tax evasion as a problem of justice and fairness inside the country.

Outside the country, though, people tend to take the sum total of the evasion (say 30% though officially it's 25%) and subtract that number from the debt. They don't realize two things.

  1. The Euro tax evasion average is 19% and the USA average is 17%, so the savings for Greece would be 6-12% of GDP.

  2. Any additional amount collected from the rich should be used to reduce the extraordinary debt burden on the classes and jobs that pay. So, the net would stay the same.

I would also mention that shipping, the oligarch's domain, is untaxed except for tonnage tax on the ships, and the shipowners are largely paid in long-term capital gains (i.e. selling stock). This also means that while shipping is a significant part of GDP, it does not add much to taxes. so the tax revenue to GDP number appears slightly skewed.
by Upstate NY on Wed Nov 9th, 2011 at 07:08:05 PM EST
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