Best of the Week
Most Popular
1. Stock Markets and the History Chart of the End of the World (With Presidential Cycles) - 28th Aug 20
2.Google, Apple, Amazon, Facebook... AI Tech Stocks Buying Levels and Valuations Q3 2020 - 31st Aug 20
3.The Inflation Mega-trend is Going Hyper! - 11th Sep 20
4.Is this the End of Capitalism? - 13th Sep 20
5.What's Driving Gold, Silver and What's Next? - 3rd Sep 20
6.QE4EVER! - 9th Sep 20
7.Gold Price Trend Forecast Analysis - Part1 - 7th Sep 20
8.The Fed May “Cause” The Next Stock Market Crash - 3rd Sep 20
9.Bitcoin Price Crash - You Will be Suprised What Happens Next - 7th Sep 20
10.NVIDIA Stock Price Soars on RTX 3000 Cornering the GPU Market for next 2 years! - 3rd Sep 20
Last 7 days
Who is Spreading the Virus? UK Coronavirus 2nd Wave Analysis - 30th Sep 20
Gold And Silver Follow Up & Future Predictions For 2020 & 2021 – Part II - 30th Sep 20
The Only Thing Systematic Is The Destruction Of America - 29th Sep 20
Fractional-Reserve Banking Is The Elephant In The Room - 29th Sep 20
Gold And Silver Follow Up & Future Predictions For 2020 & 2021 – Part I - 29th Sep 20
Stock Market Short-term Reversal - 29th Sep 20
How Trump co-opted the religious right and stacked the courts with conservatives - 29th Sep 20
Which RTX 3080 GPU to BUY and AVOID! Nvidia, Asus, MSI , Palit, Gigabyte, Zotac, MLCC vs POSCAPS - 29th Sep 20
Gold, Silver & HUI Stocks Big Pictures - 28th Sep 20
It’s Time to Dump Argentina’s Peso - 28th Sep 20
Gold Stocks Seasonal Plunge - 28th Sep 20
Why Did Precious Metals Get Clobbered Last Week? - 28th Sep 20
Is The Stock Market Dow Transportation Index Setting up a Topping Pattern? - 28th Sep 20
Gold Price Setting Up Just Like Before COVID-19 Breakdown – Get Ready! - 27th Sep 20
UK Coronavirus 2nd Wave SuperMarkets Panic Buying 2.0 Toilet Paper , Hand Sanitisers, Wipes... - 27th Sep 20
Gold, Dollar and Rates: A Correlated Story - 27th Sep 20
WARNING RTX 3080 AIB FLAWED Card's, Cheap Capacitor Arrays Prone to Failing Under Load! - 27th Sep 20
Boris Johnson Hits Coronavirus Panic Button Again, UK Accelerting Covid-19 Second Wave - 25th Sep 20
Precious Metals Trading Range Doing It’s Job to Confound Bulls and Bears Alike - 25th Sep 20
Gold and Silver Are Still Locked and Loaded… Don't be Out of Ammo - 25th Sep 20
Throwing the golden baby out with the covid bath water - Gold Wins - 25th Sep 20
A Look at the Perilous Psychology of Financial Market Bubbles - 25th Sep 20
Corona Strikes Back In Europe. Will It Boost Gold? - 25th Sep 20
How to Boost the Value of Your Home - 25th Sep 20
Key Time For Stock Markets: Bears Step Up or V-Shaped Bounce - 24th Sep 20
Five ways to recover the day after a good workout - 24th Sep 20
Global Stock Markets Break Hard To The Downside – Watch Support Levels - 23rd Sep 20
Beware of These Faulty “Inflation Protected” Investments - 23rd Sep 20
What’s Behind Dollar USDX Breakout? - 23rd Sep 20
Still More Room To Stock Market Downside In The Coming Weeks - 23rd Sep 20
Platinum And Palladium Set To Surge As Gold Breaks Higher - 23rd Sep 20
Key Gold Ratios to Other Markets - 23rd Sep 20
Watch Before Upgrading / Buying RTX 3000, RDNA2 - CPU vs GPU Bottlenecks - 23rd Sep 20
Online Elliott Wave Markets Trading Course Worth $129 for FREE! - 22nd Sep 20
Gold Price Overboughtness Risk - 22nd Sep 20
Central Banking Cartel Promises ZIRP Until at Least 2023 - 22nd Sep 20
Stock Market Correction Approaching Initial Objective - 22nd Sep 20
Silver Bulls Will Be Handsomely Rewarded - 21st Sep 20
Fed Will Not Hike Rates For Years. Gold Should Like It - 21st Sep 20
US Financial Market Forecasts and Elliott Wave Analysis Resources - 21st Sep 20
How to Avoid Currency Exchange Risk during COVID - 21st Sep 20
Crude Oil – A Slight Move Higher Has Not Reversed The Bearish Trend - 20th Sep 20
Do This Instead Of Trying To Find The “Next Amazon” - 20th Sep 20
5 Significant Benefits of the MT4 Trading Platform for Forex Traders - 20th Sep 20
A Warning of Economic Collapse - 20th Sep 20
The Connection Between Stocks and the Economy is not What Most Investors Think - 19th Sep 20
A Virus So Deadly, The Government Has to Test You to See If You Have It - 19th Sep 20
Will Lagarde and Mnuchin Push Gold Higher? - 19th Sep 20
RTX 3080 Mania, Ebay Scalpers Crazy Prices £62,000 Trollers Insane Bids for a £649 GPU! - 19th Sep 20
A Greater Economic Depression For The 21st Century - 19th Sep 20
The United Floor in Stocks - 19th Sep 20
Mobile Gaming Market Trends And The Expected Future Developments - 19th Sep 20
The S&P 500 appears ready to correct, and that is a good thing - 18th Sep 20
It’s Go Time for Gold Price! Next Stop $2,250 - 18th Sep 20
Forget AMD RDNA2 and Buy Nvidia RTX 3080 FE GPU's NOW Before Price - 18th Sep 20
Best Back to School / University Black Face Masks Quick and Easy from Amazon - 18th Sep 20
3 Types of Loans to Buy an Existing Business - 18th Sep 20
How to tell Budgie Gender, Male or Female Sex for Young and Mature Parakeets - 18th Sep 20
Fasten Your Seatbelts Stock Market Make Or Break – Big Trends Ahead - 17th Sep 20
Peak Financialism And Post-Capitalist Economics - 17th Sep 20
Challenges of Working from Home - 17th Sep 20
Sheffield Heading for Coronavirus Lockdown as Covid Deaths Pass 432 - 17th Sep 20
What Does this Valuable Gold Miners Indicator Say Now? - 16th Sep 20
President Trump and Crimes Against Humanity - 16th Sep 20
Slow Economic Recovery from CoronaVirus Unlikely to Impede Strong Demand for Metals - 16th Sep 20
Why the Knives Are Out for Trump’s Fed Critic Judy Shelton - 16th Sep 20
Operation Moonshot: Get Ready for Millions of New COVAIDS Positives in the UK! - 16th Sep 20
Stock Market Approaching Correction Objective - 15th Sep 20
Look at This Big Reminder of Dot.com Stock Market Mania - 15th Sep 20
Three Key Principles for Successful Disruption Investors - 15th Sep 20
Billionaire Hedge Fund Manager Warns of 10% Inflation - 15th Sep 20
Gold Price Reaches $2,000 Amid Dollar Depreciation - 15th Sep 20
GLD, IAU Big Gold ETF Buying MIA - 14th Sep 20
Why Bill Gates Is Betting Millions on Synthetic Biology - 14th Sep 20
Stock Market SPY Expectations For The Rest Of September - 14th Sep 20
Gold Price Gann Angle Update - 14th Sep 20
Stock Market Recovery from the Sharp Correction Goes On - 14th Sep 20
Is this the End of Capitalism? - 13th Sep 20
The Silver Big Prize - 13th Sep 20
U.S. Shares Plunged. Is Gold Next? - 13th Sep 20
Why Are 7,500 Oil Barrels Floating on this London Lake? - 13th Sep 20
Sheffield 432 Covid-19 Deaths, Last City Centre Shop Before Next Lockdown - 13th Sep 20
Biden or Trump Will Keep The Money Spigots Open - 13th Sep 20
Gold And Silver Up, Down, Sideways, Up - 13th Sep 20

Market Oracle FREE Newsletter

How to Get Rich Investing in Stocks by Riding the Electron Wave

Eurocrats Terrified of Democracy; In Praise of Papandreou's Greece Referendum Decision

Politics / Euro-Zone Nov 02, 2011 - 06:50 AM GMT

By: Mike_Shedlock

Politics

Best Financial Markets Analysis ArticleI do not know what motivated Greek Prime minister George Papandreou to call for a voter referendum on the Greek bailouts (and no one else does either) with the exception of Papandreou himself.

However, there are some rather interesting possibilities (as well as a simple explanation).

The Slog outlines a scenario that Papandreou’s bailout referendum bombshell was inspired by Merkel in order to trigger major losses in French banks, causing France to lose its AAA rating, culminating in a total Merkel victory and German revenge over France.


Wow.

As convoluted and conspiratorial as that sounds, it makes for highly entertaining reading (and it's also well presented). On the other hand, my readers know I am a firm believer in "Occam's Razor" which suggests the simplest explanation (the one making the fewest assumptions) is likely to be the correct one.

Certainly, one should never rule out stupidity when that is one of the possibilities. An even simpler explanation is that Papandreou is simply tired of the beatings, and the meetings, and the riots, and has simply decided to "walk away" from the mess by handing the decision over to the voters.

I believe that is the "most likely" explanation even though The Slog presents a very good case that Papandreou Planned this Referendum in Advance with help of his interior minister.

However, planning for a referendum and being prepared for one in advance (if necessary) are two different things. Thus, I suggest (and so would Occam's Razor) that Papandreou saw a potential need for a referendum down the road, and that potential need turned into reality.

One final puzzling aspect to this mess is that just three days ago Papandreou affirmed his commitment to the EU/IMF Troika solution. So what's up with that? Once again no one knows except Papandreou but I will stick with the assessment there is a simple explanation that is not readily apparent right now.

In Praise of Democracy and Choices

With that backdrop, and with the statement I do not like Papandreou personally, I praise Democracy, and by implication, Papandreou's decision.

Is there any reason Greek voters should not be given a choice? I think not. They may not make a wise choice but what is the likelihood that political hacks and political opportunists will?

Iceland Referendum a Winner

Take a good look at Iceland. In repeated attempts, political hacks (with banker's interests in mind) attempted to sell Icelandic citizens into debt slavery. A referendum saved the day. Sadly, voters were forced to repeat the referendum, and once again voters made the correct decision.

Iceland is now in full recovery simply because it told the EU and IMF to go to hell.

No Easy Way out for Greece

Greece does not have an easy way out. However, its problems are no doubt far worse than if it told the EU and the IMF to go to hell two years ago.

Greece should have gone bankrupt long ago. Heck, it should not be in the EU in the first place, and the EU is primarily to blame even though Greece lied to get in.

Speaking Against Political Hypocrisy

Peter Tchir at TF Market Advisors (and one of the best authors on Zero Hedge) also praises democracy. Yesterday he pinged me with this set of comments.

If a leader in the Middle East finally gave into months of protest and decided to give the people a real say on an important issue, the Western leaders would be rejoicing. Obama would have a podium and be uttering his support for the Courage of the people who stood up and give the Arab spring his full blessing.

But if a fellow Western leader dares let his people express their wishes more directly than via "their representatives" they are all shocked and outraged. In the meantime other Greek politicians are busy taking advantage to gain power rather than helping their citizens.

Eloquent Praise for Democracy

Pater Tenebrarum at the Acting Man blog eloquently discusses democracy in his post Papandreou Calls For Referendum On Bailout

Embattled Greek prime minister Papandreou has found a way to stick it to the eurocrats in a most elegant manner: instead of continuing to serve as everyone's favorite whipping boy, he has decided it is time to let the Greek people themselves speak out on the future of their country. In a surprise announcement yesterday, he told parliament that Greece is to hold its first referendum since 1974 and that the population would be asked whether it wants to accept the conditions of the bailout plan or not.

The eurocracy is at its heart deeply undemocratic – if it were up to the 'technocrats' leading it, national subsidiarity would have long ago become a relic of the past and democratic interference with their plan to erect a socialist super-state would be kept to a bare minimum.

This can be seen by the fate suffered by previous referendums: when the Irish and French e.g. said 'no' and 'non' respectively to the Lisbon treaty, the referendums were simply repeated to get the 'right' result. As Stalin once sagely remarked, it doesn't matter who votes for what anyway – what matters is who counts the votes. So far, the eurocrats have always gotten the results that they wanted, by hook or by crook. Lately this has become a bit more difficult, as evidenced by recent decisions of the German constitutional court, whose chief justice Andreas Voßkuhle even went as far as demanding a referendum for German citizens as well if the government wanted to cede any more of its fiscal sovereignty to the eurocracy in Brussels.

Greece is the cradle of Western democracy - it is only fitting that it should upset the EU applecart by means of actually practicing it.

Eurocrats are Terrified of Democracy

Tenebrarum certainly hit the nail on the head and so did Daniel Hannan on The Telegraph with his post Eurocrats are Terrified of Democracy

Shall I tell you the truly terrifying thing about the EU? It’s not the absence of democracy in Brussels, or the ease with which Eurocrats swat aside referendum results. It’s the way in which the internal democracy of the member states is subverted in order to sustain the requirements of membership.

George Papandreou, the luckless Greek leader, is the latest politician to find himself being chewed up because he stands in the way of the Brussels machine. On Monday afternoon, Papandreou announced a referendum on whether to accept the EU’s bail-out terms. He had evidently had enough of the antics of the opposition party, New Democracy, which kept insisting that Greece remain in the euro, while opposing all the austerity measures necessary to that end – an outrageous stance given that New Democracy ran up the deficit in the first place. Papandreou hoped to force his opponents off the fence: in favour of the spending cuts or against euro membership. Perhaps he also hoped to put pressure on the EU to offer more generous terms.

I wish I could convey the sheer horror that his proposal provoked in Brussels. The first rule of the Eurocracy is “no referendums”. Brussels functionaries believe that their work is too important to be subject to the prejudices of hoi polloi (for once, the Greek phrase seems apposite). Referendums are always seen as irresponsible; but, at a time when the euro is teetering on the brink, Papandreou’s proposal was seen as an act of ingratitude bordering on treason.

Eurocrats are prepared to pay any price rather than admit that the single currency was a mistake – or, more precisely, to expect their peoples to pay, since EU officials are exempt from national taxation. The peripheral countries are to suffer poverty, unemployment and emigration, the core countries perpetual tax rises, so that supporters of the euro can save face.

It’s chilling to write these words, but EU leaders are evidently prepared to vitiate Greek democracy and wreck the Greek economy rather than allow the euro to break apart. Yet even if they succeed in Greece, they may find that their efforts are for nothing. Italian bond spreads yesterday were back at the level that usually triggers bail-outs. We are about to see quite how far the Brussels apparat will go in defence of its privileges.

Parade of Cowards

In contrast to Hannan, Tchir, and Tenebrarum, the parade of bureaucratic cowards terrified of democracy is nearly endless. Here are some prime examples.

  • French President Nicolas Sarkozy said in a rare televised address on the steps of the Elysee palace in Paris. "The plan ... is the only way to solve Greece's debt problem." (Reuters)
  • Daniel Knowles writing for The Telegraph has this story headline - Peace in Europe lasts just five days as Greece turns to blackmail
  • Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte said he would try to prevent the referendum plan, saying he would "attempt to see that it doesn't happen." (AP)
  • Socialist deputy Hara Kefalidou said "I cannot back a referendum which is a subterfuge by a government that appears unwilling to govern." (AP)
  • French lawmaker Christian Estrosi said on France-Info radio that the move was "totally irresponsible." "I want to tell the Greek government that when you are in a situation of crisis, and others want to help you, it is insulting to try to save your skin instead of assuming your responsibilities," Estrosi said. (AP)
  • Nicolas Sarkozy’s spokesman described Papandreou’s announcement as “irrational and dangerous” (Telegraph)
  • Constantine Michalos, the president of the Athens Chamber of Commerce, called the proposal “an act of political blackmail” (Telegraph)
  • Antonis Samaras, the leader of New Democracy, vowed – with splendid disregard for his party’s name – to prevent a referendum “at all costs” (Telegraph)

Ultimate Irony: Papandreou a Fervent Euro-Enthusiast

Here is one more clip by Daniel Hannan on The Telegraph worth reading.

Euro-enthusiasts in Brussels and in Athens are ready to bring down an elected government rather than allow a referendum. Yet the funny thing is that Papandreou is a Euro-enthusiast. He fervently wants to remain in the euro, and had been planning to campaign for a Yes vote. His sin, in the eyes of Brussels, was not to hold the wrong opinions, but to be too keen on democracy. Leninists had a term for people who, while they might be committed Bolsheviks, none the less behaved in a way which endangered the movement. They were called “objectively counter-revolutionary”. Poor Papandreou finds himself in this category.

Help?! What Help?

Of all the cowards, the statement by French lawmaker Christian Estrosi is the most galling: "when you are in a situation of crisis, and others want to help you, it is insulting to try to save your skin instead of assuming your responsibilities."

Whose Skin Are We Saving?

No eurocrat or politician outside of Greece gives a rat's ass about helping Greece. The only skin they want to save is their own.

That realization coupled with my earlier proposal that Papandreou was tired of beatings, meetings, and riots is by far the most likely reason Papandreou decided to "walk away" from the mess via referendum.

It's a pity he did not do so long ago

By Mike "Mish" Shedlock
http://globaleconomicanalysis.blogspot.com Click Here To Scroll Thru My Recent Post List

Mike Shedlock / Mish is a registered investment advisor representative for SitkaPacific Capital Management . Sitka Pacific is an asset management firm whose goal is strong performance and low volatility, regardless of market direction.

Visit Sitka Pacific's Account Management Page to learn more about wealth management and capital preservation strategies of Sitka Pacific.

I do weekly podcasts every Thursday on HoweStreet and a brief 7 minute segment on Saturday on CKNW AM 980 in Vancouver.

When not writing about stocks or the economy I spends a great deal of time on photography and in the garden. I have over 80 magazine and book cover credits. Some of my Wisconsin and gardening images can be seen at MichaelShedlock.com .

© 2011 Mike Shedlock, All Rights Reserved.


© 2005-2019 http://www.MarketOracle.co.uk - The Market Oracle is a FREE Daily Financial Markets Analysis & Forecasting online publication.


Comments

Harald
03 Nov 11, 11:01
Greek Prime Minister Papandreou controversial announcement

After the controversial announcement of the Greek Prime Minister Papandreou, the people vote on the adoption of the EU summit conclusions on Greek debt crisis to let the pressure on the government in Athens is growing. You do not have great idea, but it is clear what's coming. Greece is the poor man of Europe. Also, now agrees that an emergency government, the problem is not solved.


Post Comment

Only logged in users are allowed to post comments. Register/ Log in

6 Critical Money Making Rules