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We Are All Greece


#1

We Are All Greece

Helena Norberg-Hodge

The cast of heroes and villains in Greece’s ongoing battle to save its economy varies depending on who’s telling the story. One simplified narrative depicts the German people as rich and callous overlords inflicting hardship on the downtrodden Greeks. The austerity measures they insist upon are essentially meant to punish the Greeks for spending too much on social programs for the sick and elderly.


#2

Well-argued, Ms. Norberg-Hodge.

This encapsulates the whole nemesis:

"In the end, the economic problem in Greece is the product of a global system that puts the needs of corporations and banks ahead of people and the planet. The same system is responsible for the polluted rivers and air in China, for the sweatshop conditions in Bangladesh, for the economic refugees from Africa desperately seeking asylum in Europe, and for the collapsing economies of Puerto Rico, Greece, and beyond. The internal logic of this global system favors no nation – not Germany, not even the United States – but only the footloose corporations and banks that dominate the global economy."

Note how the intelligent mind looks past the Frank Luntz IDIOT-Talking Point of turning problems of this magnitude into a personal indictment of U.S. voters.


#3

Punishing the victims for the failure policy makers.


#4

As opposed to Susan Rose's endlessly repeated IDIOT-Talking Point that THERE IS NOTHING ANYONE CAN DO to address problems of this magnitude.


#5

Are you mocking the name " sioux ", here? Please have more respect for the Native Americans of the Northern Great Plains, whose nation stretched from Lake Michigan to where the Blackfeet of Montana cleaned their clock, so to speak. And, I think Ms. Norberg-Hodge is again reminding us of what most of the people who think about these things, already know is just over a very short horizon.


#6

Ms. Norberg-Hodge writes:

"In country after country, TNCs have been able to evade taxes by
‘offshoring’ their activities, and to bargain for lower tax rates and
higher subsidies by threatening to move where even less in taxes will be
demanded, and even more in subsidies provided."


So who is worse, the prostitutes pedaling themselves to the highest bidder, their clients who will pay whatever they need to obtain the "services" offered, or the general public at large who tolerate such practice as a "victimless crime"?
When viewed that way, governments, TNC's and the public at large all share equally in the blame for that which ails our societies at large. And not until everyone owns up to their individual and collective responsibility for this rampant societal immorality can any progress be ,made towards its solution. It is always so much easier to blame others than look into the mirror at yourself and see your own culpability in the matter.


#7

Thanks for asking! No, i'm not the one who is mocking the name "Sioux" here.


#8

Not to mention which those "prostitutes" have been put in office by that general public ...


#9

Shucks, you beat me to it .... (smile)


#10

To question a few things,

If that were so, how come so many banks in Iceland, the UK, Spain and Greece have failed, or are regarded as teetering on the brink of failure, only propped up by the ECB?
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The writer also wrote "The European Union is an extension of the Bretton Woods institutions – The World Bank, the International Monetary Fund (IMF), and the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) – founded at the end of World War II. Their stated purpose was global economic integration in order to avoid another depression and to avert war."
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My understanding of history is that it was simpler than that. The very start of the EU, the Benelux and the European Coal and Steel Community, was that rebuilding after WW#2 would go faster with lower trade barriers between the initial (6) countries than with the high prewar trade barriers. Take a look some time at how big (area) Belgium, Netherlands and Luxembourg are. I will bet that there was also a little imperialism. In exchange for the Marshall Plan and US NATO guarantees of their freedom vs. Stalin's style of 'People's Republic rule', trade barriers between the US and Western Europe were also reduced, some, from what they had been before the war.
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As for local vs. broader marketing, consider the origin of Kraft Cheese company. Before Kraft every community had its own creamery and cheesemaker. Quality consistency was lacking. What Kraft provided was better quality, consistently, at a lower price. That's why local cheesemakers were put out of business. Considered on its own, that's good. One of our macroeconomic questions is "how big a company and marketing region is too big and bad for society?"


#11

Point of information--the correct name of that Native American tribe whose honor you defend is the "Lakota Sioux" and not just "Sioux".


#12

Precisely!--the general public, filled with apathy and indifference and mesmerized by the distraction of mass media have been bought off by both the prostitutes (legislators) and their patrons (the TNC's Ms. Norberg-Hodge speaks of). If we want to carry the metaphor a little further the lobbyists of K Street function in the role of pimps bringing both prostitutes and their clientele together.
No wonder that we live in such a sexually loose society--we set the table for such slop by our toleration of such blatant bribery and compromise in the name of "Democracy Now!".


#13

Actually in their own world, none of the seven peoples of the Great Sioux Nation ever called themselves "Sioux" in any form.


#14

You are more correct than I. "Sioux" was a French invention.