The Greeks have officially gone from the brilliance of Aristotle to the bovine scatology of Reverend Al Sharpton. I look back on the whole experience of reading The Crito, and realize that Socrates really did have a point when he drank the hemlock. A Greek Member of Parliament demonstrated why friends don’t let friends drink the Jones-Flavored Cool-Aid of identity politics.
"How does Germany have the cheek to denounce us over our finances when it has still not paid compensation for Greece's war victims?" Margaritis Tzimas, of the main opposition New Democracy party, told parliament. "There are still Greeks weeping for their lost brothers," the conservative lawmaker said during a debate on a bill to clean up the country's discredited statistical service.(HT: Clusterstock.com)
Aside from the rather obvious probability that fewer than 0.01% of Greece’s current population ever went face-to-face with a living Nazi who wasn’t a homegrown political extremist, this theft-by-reparations is evil as well as ridiculous. National demands for reparations always get used as a method for home-grown failures to use another nation’s or another individual’s finances to prop up their own malfeasant endeavors.
I guess I’m scrathin’ the ol’ noggin and just not getting how mugging the Germans for reparations cleans up the country’s discredited statistical service. If it works in Greece, maybe we can just keel-haul Angela Merkel’s treasury and make the CRU at East Anglia University an academic department worthy of professional respect.
So how does Germany have the cheek to denounce Greece for its feckless and uncaring enstupidation? Where do the Sour-Krauts get off?
It all goes back to the fact that Greece signed on to a single European currency along with the Germans, the French and a Star Wars Cantina Scene of other suckers. This gave Greece the ability to borrow money on the same level of creditworthiness as Holland. It also allowed them to trade in economic markets with the combined clout of much of the rest of Continental Europe.
In return for a creditworthiness they in no way deserved, they agreed to play nicely with Germany’s Visa Card and not go off on a Bacchanal’s Holiday with the government spending. They dealt in good faith the same way Odysseus did when he gave the brave Trojans a pony. (As a UCLA alum, I’ve questioned the perspicacity of USC grads in light of that story.)
The Greeks blew the doors of their national mint. They spent at a rate that makes President Obama and Nancy Pelosi look like members of the local Mahjong Association clipping bond coupons. They made Spain look frugal while using the economic strength of the Eurozone to avoid the inflation attendant to the economic practices of Robert Mugabe. They got to spend as if they were Zimbabwe and still get to live as if they were within the limits of the Aristotelian Golden Mean.
Not only were the Greeks feckless, they also practiced mendacious dishonesty. They used debt swap deals to conceal the true magnitude of their fiscal indebtedness. This allowed them to avoid censure while they flagrantly flaunted the 3% limit the Eurozone enacted on national deficits. The AP describes their chicanery below.
Greece has until Friday to disclose to the European Commission how it used complex currency swap deals and whether they were used to conceal the real scale of its debt — specifically a 2002 deal that Greek officials said they did with U.S. investment bank Goldman Sachs. Under the deal, known as a currency swap, Greek dollar and yen debt was reportedly exchanged for euro debt for a period at an advantageous rate to be reversed at a later date. The effect was to show less debt in the near-term.(HT: Clusterstock.com)
Of course, the Greeks are not alone in their disingenuous perfidy. They are not the only people using Blankfeinian Prestidigitation to Botox their butt-ugly balance sheets. They, like Tiger Woods, are the ones who got nabbed with the emails to prove it. Now they want to use this whole reparations angle to brazen their way out saying the two hardest words to pronounce in the political lexicon. “I’m guilty.”
But they are guilty. They are mendacious. They do need to be made an example of. They should they be hung, drawn and quartered to chasten Europe, and to scare the United States Congress as well.
Bad things need to happen to dishonest governments that cut corners. Otherwise, all governments will remain the refuge of incompetent, lying, worthless sacks of Carville. Thus I close this missive with a modest proposal.
For the next twenty-five years, in recognition of their vile deviance, the Greeks shall pay all other Eurozone nations an agreed upon sum as Stupidity Reparations. For having the unmitigated gall to borrow unaccounted sums of money, using someone else’s good name - with the wantonness of an Internet identity thief, they must be castigated.
Perhaps that giant pink pig that Pink Floyd set aloft over Versailles Palace one magical night should grace the airspace directly over the ruins of The Parthenon. Maybe then, even Paul Krugman could figure out that nations really do need to repay the vast sums of money they borrow from others.
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