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Thread: The latest Greek Austerity Budget

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    Politics.ie Member Aristodemus's Avatar
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    Default The latest Greek Austerity Budget

    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?

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    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 by root for solidarity; 9th November 2012 at 09:11 PM.

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    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.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Aristodemus View Post
    With the exception of the third item on that list is the budget really that draconian? T
    Not when you consider the cuts that would be necessary if the EU & IMF cut off funding.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ryan Tubbs View Post
    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.

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    Politics.ie Member making waves's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aristodemus View Post
    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.
    Separate Church and State

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    Politics.ie Member southwestkerry's Avatar
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    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.
    A ship at harbour is safe but that is not what ships were built for.

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    Politics.ie Member hammer's Avatar
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    Any new tax collection methods ?

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    Politics.ie Member southwestkerry's Avatar
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    Tax collection... in Greece... not on my Nelly.
    Quelle Surprise! Greece is REALLY REALLY Bad at Collecting Taxes! naked capitalism
    Tax tax tax tax tax... sigh.
    A ship at harbour is safe but that is not what ships were built for.

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    Politics.ie Member hammer's Avatar
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    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 ?

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