The Greek Surrender

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May 22, 2016 SHARMINI PERIES, TRNN: It's the Real News Network, I’m Sharmini Peries coming to you from Baltimore.  Greece's economic crisis has perhaps been eclipsed by Europe's refugee crisis, terrorist attacks, and by the forthcoming Brexit referendum. But it has not gone away.  Greece's Syriza coalition faced violence on the streets and a 3 day general strike last week that had brought much of the country to a halt. In spite of the protests the government of Alexis Tsipras pushed through legislation to amend the country's tax and pension system with the backing of 153 MPs, a measure required by the lenders in order to continue the debt negotiations. Addressing the 300 seat house, Prime Minister Alex Tsipras said we are ...

Reuters’ Public Relations Missif

As published on Counterpunch: This autumn may see anti-austerity coalitions gain power in Portugal, Spain and Italy, while Marine le Pen’s National Front in France presses for outright withdrawal from the eurozone. These countries face a common problem: how to resist the economic devastation that the European Central Bank (ECB), European Council and IMF “troika” has inflicted on Greece and is now intending to do the same to southern Europe. To resist the depression and debt deflation that the troika seeks to deepen, one needs to bear in mind the dynamics that make the IMF un-reformable. Its destructive role in Greece provides an object lesson for how southern Europe must shun its horde of ideologues, as Third World countries learned to avoid ...

Democracy Now: China stocks over consumption

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Watch the video on the Democracy Now site Black Monday is how economists are describing Monday’s market turmoil, which saw stock prices tumble across the globe, from China to Europe to the United States. China’s stock indices fell over 8 percent on Monday and another 7 percent today. On Wall Street, the Dow Jones Industrial Average initially fell a record 1,100 points before closing down nearly 600 points. The decline also caused oil prices to plunge to their lowest levels in almost six years. To make sense of what’s really behind the fluctuations in the market, we are joined by economist Michael Hudson, president of the Institute for the Study of Long-Term Economic Trends, a Wall Street financial analyst and author ...

Why Greece’s Debt is Illegal

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  Capitalism and Government Debt at Odds in Greece (1/2) Michael Hudson says unlike personal and corporate debt, there is no legal framework for writing off government debt, so there is deliberate anarchy in place -   July 10, 2015   SHARMINI PERIES, EXEC. PRODUCER, TRNN: Welcome to the Real News Network. I'm Sharmini Peries coming to you from Baltimore. Greece is in the situation they're in, burdened with a huge debt that they cannot pay, because there's no legal framework for writing down debt owed to the IMF, ECB, and intergovernmental bodies, writes Michael Hudson in an article he penned in Counterpunch. So where do we go from here? To answer this question, I'm joined by Michael Hudson. He's a former Wall Street economist and ...

EU Infrastructure Undermines Sovereignty

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The Financial Attack on Greece: Where To From Here? The major financial problem tearing economies apart over the past century has lain more with official inter-governmental debt than with private-sector debt. That is why the global economy today faces a similar breakdown to 1929-31, when it became apparent that the volume of official inter-government debts could not be paid. The Versailles Treaty had imposed impossibly high reparations demands on Germany, and the United States imposed equally destructive demands on the Allies to use their reparations receipts to pay World War I arms debts to the U.S. Government. Legal procedures are well established to cope with corporate and personal bankruptcy. Courts write down personal and business debts either under “debtor in control” ...

Why No Means Yes

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Greece Rejects the Troika. Where Do We Go From Here? Just after 7 PM Greek time on Sunday, I was told that the “No” vote (Gk. Oxi) was winning approximately 60/40. The “opinion polls” showing a dead heat evidently were wrong. Bookies across Europe are reported to be losing their shirts for betting that the financial right wing could fool most Greeks into voting against their self-interest. The margin of victory shows that Greek voters were immune to media misrepresentation during the week-long run-up as to whether to accept the troika’s demand for austerity to be conducted on anti-labor lines. It should not have been so great a surprise. Voting age for the referendum was lowered to 18 years, and included ...

Greece: On Behalf of Europe …

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Michael Hudson is a Distinguished Research Professor of Economics at the University of Missouri, Kansas City. He is the author of The Bubble and Beyond and Finance Capitalism and its Discontents. His most recent book is titled Killing the Host: How Financial Parasites and Debt Bondage Destroy the Global Economy. William K. Black, author of The Best Way to Rob a Bank is to Own One, teaches economics and law at the University of Missouri Kansas City (UMKC). He was the Executive Director of the Institute for Fraud Prevention from 2005-2007. He has taught previously at the LBJ School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas at Austin and at Santa Clara University, where he was also the distinguished scholar ...

Resisting Financial Conquest

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As published on Counterpunch Back in January upon coming into office, Syriza probably could not have won a referendum on whether to pay or not to pay. It didn’t have a full parliamentary majority, and had to rely on a nationalist party for Tsipras to become prime minister. (That party balked at cutting back Greek military spending, which was 3% of GDP, and which the troika had helpfully urged to be cut back in order to balance the government’s budget.) Seeing how unyielding the opposition was, Syriza’s stance was: “We would like to pay. But there’s no money.” This kept throwing the ball back into the troika’s court. The Institutions were so unyielding that Syriza’s approval rating in the polls rose by 13% ...

Global Financialization 2015 – The state of play

Cross-posted from The Saker The Saker: We hear that the Ukraine will have to declare a default, but that it will probably be a "technical" default as opposed to an official one. Some say that the decision of the Rada to allow Iatseniuk to chose whom to pay is already such a "technical default". Is there such thing as a "technical default" and, if yes, how would it be different in terms of consequences for the Ukraine for a "regular" default? Michael Hudson: A default is a default. The attempted euphemism of “technical” default came up with regard to the Greek debt in 2012 at the G8 meetings. Geithner and Obama lobbied the IMF and ECB shamelessly to bail out Greece, simply ...