Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
Display:
24-48 hours ago you called a few of us conspiracy theorists for claiming that Germany and a couple others were deliberately coming up with additional demands for the Greek bailout so as to force Greece to abandon the eurozone.

Here we are and the same conspiracies are conventional wisdom, not only much remarked upon by serious columnists in newspapers all over the world, but by Greek politicians and then the head of the EC commission and even Germany had to deny after the Dutch flunkies took it several steps too far.

by Upstate NY on Fri Feb 17th, 2012 at 10:41:16 PM EST
[ Parent ]
conspiracy theories don't become more plausible by the number of adherents they have. I stand by that.  The theory that the evil Germans are purposely "humiliating" the poor Greeks to drive them out of the Euro is ludicrous. The theory is a politcal weapon to a political end - namely inducing Germany and others to accept the current bailout with a minimum of conditioons and oversight.

Here we are and the same conspiracies are conventional wisdom, not only much remarked upon by serious columnists in newspapers all over the world, but by [...] politicians

The same could have been said about "The Protocols of the Elders of Zion" at its time. Didn't make them more true, either.

by cris0 on Fri Feb 17th, 2012 at 11:01:07 PM EST
[ Parent ]
So, you think it's reasonable for the troika to show up in Greece 1 1/2 weeks ago and demand austerity measures, which the Greeks duly pass despite huge demonstrations and a general strike.

The next morning the Eurogroup demands 325 million in additional cuts.

Commentators everywhere say they have moved the goalposts. Some even predict the Eurogroup will come up with lame additional demands after Greece approves the bill.

Roesler and the Dutch FM talk of Greece not meeting deadlines immediately about an hour after the new demands.

Huge demonstrations occur as the Greek Parliament votes on the new demands and passes them.

The very next morning, Schauble and others mention new increased requirements. Signed affidavits. On Sunday the day before, Samaras said of course he would sign such a document. He assured that everything would be ready for Wednesdays meeting.

Monday the Eurogroup rejects Greece's plans to cut 300 million from the procurement of military weaponry (gee, I wonder why!!???). They say Greece has not done it homework. They will not proceed with the bailout if Greece cuts its military.

On Tuesday morning as Greece assures it will come up with a different mix for the 325 million (all within less than the span of 24 hours) the Wed. meeting is canceled. Why? Because they don't trust Samaras to sign the document. Meanwhile, in Athens, Samaras is wondering what all the fuss is about. He assured two days earlier he would sign the document by the Wed. deadline he had been given. He signs it and sends it, and not only that, he takes a .pdf of it on Tuesday morning and plasters it on the ND website.

Wed. comes and the meeting has been canceled. The Greeks have long met all the additional requirements. Schauble makes his black hole comment and says Greece has not met the requirements of the debt sustainability prerequisite (a study which shows Greece's austerity program is not working -- NO SHIT, SHERLOCK!!!). A Dutch Deputy FM weighs in that the bailout program will be split and Greece will not receive its answer until AFTER new elections.

Wed. night the Greeks receive word that a new permanent viceroy will be appointed for Greece, that there will be a new escrow account. The Greeks meekly accept.

Surprised by the level of scorn and humiliation the Greeks have accepted, Schauble adds one more heaping spoonful: the elections will be canceled, no Democratic elections for Greece, the two party leaders in the unity gov't have to step down for technocrats.

Apparently, the Dutch flunkie doesn't get the memo because he's still bleating about giving the Greeks an answer after the next election.

Friday morning coms and we hear of yet another new demand: all minor parties even outside of gov't, even splinter parties and tiny parties, must sign the document avowing fealty.

People like Hans Werder Sinn come out discussing how Greece must leave the euro, the CEO of Bosch comes out and says the same thing, several others in and out of German gov't...

...and here we are on EuroTrib discussing whether deliberate and very silly demands were made on Greece in order to get them to leave the eurozone!!!!

by Upstate NY on Sat Feb 18th, 2012 at 10:25:38 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Can you make this a diary, with links?

tens of millions of people stand to see their lives ruined because the bureaucrats at the ECB don't understand introductory economics -- Dean Baker
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Sat Feb 18th, 2012 at 10:32:24 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Unfortunately, I am leaving for a 4 day break this weekend. When I get back, I'm sure I can piece this together.

This will all come from the Guardian running blog and the Daily Telegraph.

by Upstate NY on Sat Feb 18th, 2012 at 05:41:32 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I think this also warrants a more general answer.

While this "humiliate them until they break" is imagination, it is quite conceivable that the surplus states, as a plan B, methodically prepare for making the case to cut Greece off, both to their own electorates and the EU public at large.  I think it is conceivable to interpret the meticulous insistence on detail of the powers that be in that context.  And if they do their job, at the moment they do this they will also have a plan to incentivize Greece to move the way they want it to move (i.E Bankruptcy with or without Euro).

Contrary to certain newspapers I fail to see this as evil. To the contrary, it is good political craftmansship. If they don't have a plan B in the current situation they are fools, and you don't go into a decision phase of that kind without a clear understanding of the desired outcome and the path you get there.

by cris0 on Fri Feb 17th, 2012 at 11:28:47 PM EST
[ Parent ]
While this "humiliate them until they break" is imagination, it is quite conceivable that the surplus states, as a plan B, methodically prepare for making the case to cut Greece off, both to their own electorates and the EU public at large.

Nice spin. You realise, of course, that when you strip out all the newspeak, what you're saying is "deliberately and methodically forcing Greece out of the Eurozone after plundering it to the greatest extent possible is pure fantasy, but deliberately and methodically forcing Greece out of the Eurozone after plundering it to the greatest extent possible is quite conceivable."

Contrary to certain newspapers I fail to see this as evil. To the contrary, it is good political craftmansship.

The two are not mutually exclusive. McCarthy's House Unamerican Activities Committee was excellent political craftsmanship.

- Jake

Friends come and go. Enemies accumulate.

by JakeS (JangoSierra 'at' gmail 'dot' com) on Sat Feb 18th, 2012 at 03:57:14 AM EST
[ Parent ]
You realise, of course, that when you strip out all the newspeak, what you're saying is

Nope.

Contingency-planning something and actually doing it is a world of difference.

by cris0 on Sat Feb 18th, 2012 at 08:43:34 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Not when you systematically foreclose on all other options.

- Jake

Friends come and go. Enemies accumulate.

by JakeS (JangoSierra 'at' gmail 'dot' com) on Sat Feb 18th, 2012 at 09:37:25 AM EST
[ Parent ]

Display:

Occasional Series