• It has come to our attention that some users may have been "banned" when they tried to change their passwords after the site was hacked due to a glitch in the old vBulletin software. This would have occurred around the end of February and does not apply after the site was converted to Xenforo. If you believe you were affected by this, please contact a staff member or use the Contact us link at the bottom of any forum page.

The latest Greek Austerity Budget


Aristodemus

Well-known member
Joined
Oct 8, 2009
Messages
3,741
There is an awful lot spoken about this but what it actually contains is a lot harder to find.
I have just read in the Irish Times that the following measures were introduced last night:
Retirement age increased from 65 to 67 from January 1st

Pensioners and public servants to lose bonus of two extra monthly payments at Christmas, Easter, summer

Public utility employee pay slashed by 30-35%

Cut of 5-15% on pensions above €1,000

Special salaries paid to army, police, judiciary, professors, bishops and state doctors cut by 2-30%

Cap on severance pay and reduction of workplace notice

Minimum monthly wage of €580 (€511 for under 25s) frozen until 2016

Deregulation of taxi, haulier and other closed professions

Disability, child and unemployment benefit linked to family income


With the exception of the third item on that list is the budget really that draconian? The way it has been reported is that this is the third in a line of harsh budgets. One would have thought that by this stage the "low hanging fruit" would have been dealt with and that the measures to be introduced would be exceptionally harsh. Certainly as a Minister for Finance I think I would already have stopped "bonus" social welfare payments in the first budget, not the third, and means testing unemployment and child benefits is already done elsewhere. Just what did the other 2 budgets actually do if its only now they are getting around to deal with these items?
 

root for solidarity

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 14, 2012
Messages
370
I don't think you get the big picture Aristodemus.
Whe've been having packages of measures like this, one after another, for three years now and they have led to nothing.
About 20% recession, 25% unemployment (up from about 10%), 58% unemployment for young people, 30-40% of people under the poverty line and a sovereighn dept that is rising fast and out of control (despite the haircut). No money whatsoever is circulating in the market. This is all going nowhere and it must end fast. That is just it.

And then I must disagree with your perception of "draconian".

Retirement age increased from 65 to 67 from January 1st
Wtf? We,ve already got 58% unemployment in young people (and society is falling appart because of that -let alone democracy) and you think that making old people work more to get their pension is not draconian?

Pensioners and public servants to lose bonus of two extra monthly payments at Christmas, Easter, summer
They are to lose what was left of these "bonuses" (the little that was left untouched by previous austerity packages). Plus I don't really think the word used "bonus" is really enlightening... If you have a pension of just 300 or 400 Euro (and many people do) losing these "bonuses" would be very devastating...

Public utility employee pay slashed by 30-35%

Cut of 5-15% on pensions above €1,000
Do you think this is a small cut? It is actually the third or fourth such cut in pensions in a row. You think a pension of 1000 Euro is a lot (even though, many here settle for much less, as I said before)? Do you know, for example, that the medical system here is falling appart? How would a pensioner who needs healthcare pay for it (bacause that is what it is coming down to). What if he's got two unemployerd children too (and don't forget there is far less dole here than over there)?

Special salaries paid to army, police, judiciary, professors, bishops and state doctors cut by 2-30%
Doctors are allready not being paid well. Professors better but not well. Army, at least in the lower ranks, is being paid very badly.

Cap on severance pay and reduction of workplace notice
What is such a measure usefull for, exactly?

Minimum monthly wage of €580 (€511 for under 25s) frozen until 2016
Pro-tax and pro-insurance holdings. This a really some good money... Ain't it? (...)

Deregulation of taxi, haulier and other closed professions
Just to give an example: Taxi drivers used to pay some 200.000 Euro just to get a permit and now they find themselves with no compensation deregulated. Do you find that fair? Do you find it not draconian?


Disability, child and unemployment benefit linked to family income
Yes according to them if you have an anual income of 10.000 Euro, you need no more ...benefits


This is the bottom line: all you little people settle for 300 to 800 E income a month or -all too often- none at all... No matter that, for example, heating fuel has gone to 1,3 Euro a litre when it was at 0.6 a few years ago... No matter that an average powerbill is mounting to over a 100 E and the water bills aren't that far behind. No matter that you have to pay a big Heap load of tax for the little hut your grandmother left you back in the village...

Look at the big picture Aristodemus. This just isn't working.
 
Last edited:

root for solidarity

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 14, 2012
Messages
370
Check out the books. What country has ever again had a 20% recession in five consecutive years? I suspect that hasn't even happened during wartime.
 

root for solidarity

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 14, 2012
Messages
370
Not when you consider the cuts that would be necessary if the EU & IMF cut off funding.
No funding-no repaying. Default on the bondholders is what we should do. And it is not the people's fault that the euro-criminals have been working so hard to turn bank dept into sovereighn. You deal with your crook politicians, we'll deal with ours. Dump the bankers save the people. The vice versa of what is happening now.
 

making waves

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 2, 2010
Messages
19,179
Certainly as a Minister for Finance I think I would already have stopped "bonus" social welfare payments in the first budget,
Firstly they are not 'welfare' payments - they are wages and they are not bonuses - they are basic pay.
 

southwestkerry

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 20, 2008
Messages
4,230
I feel for the Greek population at large. I said two years ago they should quit the euro and stand on their own again. The first 5 years off that would be mad as hell but at lest they would be nearly half way through it and looking at the positives. At the moment... where are any positives.
 

hammer

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 6, 2009
Messages
58,514
Cant see the public service being too happy with pay cuts when the private sector avoid taxes as they see fit.

Could it happen here ?

Septic tank, water rates, property taxes etc ?
 

henryhill

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 2, 2007
Messages
520
Greece's economy has shrunken by over 20%. That's unprecedented outside of a major war. These policies are outrageous.
 

Ryan Tubbs

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 20, 2012
Messages
3,660
Greece's economy has shrunken by over 20%. That's unprecedented outside of a major war. These policies are outrageous.
So what should have been done? Less cutbacks? No reforms? That would have meant more EU/IMF money being pumped in.

Why should an unreformed Greek economy be kept at an artificially high level by even greater life support from northern Europe?
 

Jackass

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 20, 2011
Messages
2,482
No funding-no repaying. Default on the bondholders is what we should do. And it is not the people's fault that the euro-criminals have been working so hard to turn bank dept into sovereighn. You deal with your crook politicians, we'll deal with ours. Dump the bankers save the people. The vice versa of what is happening now.
Schaeuble has called in a panel of advisers to look into reform proposals for France in fear that France may take Germany down. This and the fact that Noonan has today hinted that there may be a u-turn needed on Ireland's bank debt is raising eyebrows in financial circles across Europe and the Germans are stalling payments to Cyprus because of wealthy Russian involment. There is a lot of changing tack at present but why has Noonan not spilled the beans before now? The Indo business section has the reports.
 

asset test

Well-known member
Joined
Oct 3, 2008
Messages
14,812
Greece's economy has shrunken by over 20%. That's unprecedented outside of a major war. These policies are outrageous.
And futile by the looks of things.

The lack of a proper Revenue tax collection and enforcement system such as we have here is disgraceful.

Funny though it's the Private Sector being vilified for once, re their tax evasion, but the PS Revenue staff in Greece is bearing huge cuts because they didn't do their job properly forever.
 

Aristodemus

Well-known member
Joined
Oct 8, 2009
Messages
3,741
I wasn't commenting on the efficacy or effectiveness of the measures, merely remarking on the fact that if you had to introduce cuts then cutting 2 bonus payments on monthly payments is surely a good place to start. Similarly reducing amounts paid to people over a certain amount is also a good place to start. All things are relative and for all i know you could live like a king in Greece on a grand a month. Let's face it, there would be very few people objecting to cuts in the pensions of bankers and politicians in this country
 

culmore

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 14, 2010
Messages
3,183
what are the total cuts in pay and pensions for the public service in Greece since this started and what Taxes have been raised,
 

ffc

Well-known member
Joined
Nov 6, 2007
Messages
5,167
I wasn't commenting on the efficacy or effectiveness of the measures, merely remarking on the fact that if you had to introduce cuts then cutting 2 bonus payments on monthly payments is surely a good place to start. Similarly reducing amounts paid to people over a certain amount is also a good place to start. All things are relative and for all i know you could live like a king in Greece on a grand a month. Let's face it, there would be very few people objecting to cuts in the pensions of bankers and politicians in this country
Check it out, the Euro has seen a large increase in the cost of living for Greeks.

Cost of Living in Greece. Prices in Greece.
 

bonkers

Well-known member
Joined
Oct 4, 2006
Messages
24,491
So what should have been done? Less cutbacks? No reforms? That would have meant more EU/IMF money being pumped in.

Why should an unreformed Greek economy be kept at an artificially high level by even greater life support from northern Europe?
Does reformed just mean lower wages for the plebs?
 

bonkers

Well-known member
Joined
Oct 4, 2006
Messages
24,491
If you will forgive us for believing that Mr Noonan PROBABLY knows a bit more about the nuances and problems of the EU than you do.


Hope you don't mind, my friend.
Is that a fhoooking joke?
 
Top