Monday, March 2, 2015

So, who has profited from EU "Loan Agreements"? And who has paid for them?

One of the most annoying aspects of the situation since the January elections is watching both SYRIZA supporters and SYRIZA detractors talk endlessly about "Greek obligations" toward the EU, whether they should be fulfilled, to what extent, and how. No one ever bothers to specify whose obligations these obligations really are and who has paid for them all these years. Old Karl Marx, of course, knew very well what bourgeois "debtology" is all about, for he has ominously remarked (Capital, Vol. 1, Chapter 31): "The only part of the so-called national wealth that actually enters into the collective possessions of modern peoples is their national debt."

Using Marx as means of understanding the contemporary situation with "national debt" was the main preoccupation of a book published, to great commercial success, by KKE member and journalist Nikos Bogiopoulos. Its title --It's Capitalism, Stupid (2011; pictured above)-- was nonetheless borrowed from a rather unlikely source, Bill ClintonBogiopoulos is extremely well known in Greece for his meticulous documentation of the glaring social injustice hidden behind the myth of "national debt", but as he has the great misfortune of being a KKE member, he is totally ignored by the global pundits of all things "Marxist" in Greece; they are too busy promoting more "convenient" versions of the product from the academic factories of the "global left".

This post is intended to throw some basic light on the reality of the situation, simply by translating data from some of the scores of economic research articles Bogiopoulos published in the last few years. I hope that it will settle once and for all the question: "WHO OWES WHO WHAT?"
Nikos Bogiopoulos

The sum ship tycoons pay for taxes is smaller than the sum paid by immigrants for their temporary residence permits!


In Greece, where laws change quicker than shirts, there is one and only one law that is the "Holy Bible" of all "savior" governments for the last four decades.

It is law 27/1975 on "The taxation of ships, etc." In its 30 articles, it stipulates nearly 60 different tax breaks for ship tycoons. Two tax breaks per article.
According to this law, the tax status of ship tycoons is very simple: They don't pay taxes.

More precisely, they are asked to pay a nominal fee on the basis of the tonnage of their ships. If, for instance, a tycoon owns a ship of 20,000 tons, that is up to 4 years old, then the "tax" they have to pay is 5,300 USD.

In other words, whether this ship means 1 million in profits or 1 billion, they pay 5,300 USD.

But even that is not sure. Because through other stipulations (Articles 7, 8, 9, etc) even this "nominal" charge can be reduced by half or completely eliminated under certain...very frequent preconditions!
"Wanna tax break? Become a ship owner!", 4/10/2012

1. Since the Maastricht Agreement, which is to say in the last twenty years, the Greek people have paid national and international loan sharks and profiteers the astronomical sum of 772.9 billion euro.

2. Since 2000, that is to say, since Greece's entry to the eurozone, the Greek people have paid, as interest for long term loans, the sum of 400.5 billion euro. In the same period, they have paid more than 240 billion euro to pay off interest-charged and short-term loans. Total sum: 640.5 billion euro. The proof [from the 2013 budget report]:


What's been happening is then clear:

In order to render the debt --one created by others, caused by others and consumed by others-- "sustainable", the Greek people have paid in interest, just in the last twenty years, close to 1 trillion euro. Now, in the name, once again, of the "sustainability of the debt", they "must" live without wages, without pensions, without work, without rights, so they can pay close to another 1 trillion by 2020.
N. Bogiopoulos, "The debt has already been paid", 24/10/2013


For 2014, there are additional taxes to the sum of 45.7 billion euro, which, as usual, concern the popular layers by vast majority. From the total of tax income for the next year [2014], 42 billion euro is to come from wage earners, pensioners, the petty bourgeois, and indirect taxation. From "Legal Entities", that is to say multinational corporations, monopolies, and big companies in the country, the sum budgeted is no larger than 3.7 billion euro...  

As is shown in the table above, taken from the national budget for 2014, which since Saturday night is state law, the taxes the Greek people have been asked to pay since 2004 are more than half a trillion euro total! To be more precise, they amount to 513,243 billion euro. This astronomical sum, which the permanent tax-giving beasts of burden of this country have paid with their blood, is almost three times the National Gross Product of the country! It's almost double the total public debt of the country!

Where did this money go?

- It didn't go to pay for wages and pensions. The buying power of wages and pensions of the Greek people had dropped to 1984 levels even before the crisis hit. So the redistribution of tax income is done rather differently than for the benefit of wage earners and pensioners.

- It didn't go for "free health". Bunk beds are a permanent feature of "public Health" far before Mr. Georgiadis [of ND] took over. So it didn't go there either.

- It didn't go to education. Their "public Education" has meant, for decades now, that Greek families pay the highest private sum for the education of their children than anyone else in the OECD. So they didn't go to education either.

- It didn't go to Social Security services. The basic "Social Security" that exists in Greece, before and after the crisis, is family pocket money and village dole outs -- before they eliminate those too.

- And it didn't go to "infrastructural works". We know very well that Greeks are asked to pay for tolls in "private"(!) roads before they are even built or even if they are not built! 

The benevolent "creditors" don't give their loans and installments to the Greek people. They give them to themselves! The installment for which the government is cheering, the installment used, like the ones before, as an excuse for ratifying the poly-legislation, has nothing to do with popular strata. It returns -- all of it-- to lenders and loan sharks!

I repeat: Creditors give loans so they can get back interest from previous loans and make sure that new loans will bring more interest, and so on. This vicious circle, which they baptize "debt sustainability" means an unlivable life for the people.

I repeat: They are once again cheering for a loan installment, with which the Greek people is being used as "collateral" toward creditors who do what? They "disburse" installments to fund, on the one hand, the national wolves who abolish wages, pensions and labor rights and on the other, to guarantee foreign wolves --i.e, the creditors-- their usury on older loans.

Here is the evidence:

The 8.3 billion installment approved by Schaeuble, Rehn and Dijsselbloem, and which the government is cheering about, is entirely channeled to pay for older bonds and loans of the "blessed" Troika.

More specifically:

- On 20/5/2014 there expire loans of 2,9 billion euro to the ECB and loans of 1.25 billion euro to the Central banks of partner countries.

- On 20/8/2014 there expire loans of 3,6 billion euro to the ECB and 393 million euro to the Central Banks

- From 20/5/2014 to 1/7/2014 the expiries of bonds of smaller amounts and of special bonds (to the European Investment Bank, the EU, etc) amount to 108 million euro (see, more specifically:

Total: 8,251 billion euro.

(Note: To the above sums we "owe", please add the 1,388 billion euro that Greece has to pay the IMF in the period May-August 2014, for the "aid" it received from the kind-hearted fund). 


They say that they are asking for loans to help the state and the people. They are lying! Until now, the total loans disbursed through the first and second Memorandum amount to 225 billion euro. In the same period, and according to the data provided to the Parliament by Mr. Staikouras in response to a question by Manolis Glezos, banks have received more than 250 billion euro in the form of aid packages.


They say they are asking for loans so they can pay wages and pensions. They are lying. In the same period that governments borrowed the 225 billion euro from the Troika, the Greek people has paid, in interest, compound interest, and expenditures for the servicing of public debt the amount of 164.5 billion and has  been burdened, for the paying off of short-term bonds, with expenditures of 267.7 billion euro! In other words,  they are charged with 200 billion euro more. (See 2015 Budget, Tables 4.6 και 4.7, page 178).
"Their debt and our duty", 20/1/2015


Today, more than 70% of the total public debt of Greece is in fact debt deriving from so-called Troika "loans". When we say "so-called loans", we mean that more than 90% of these loans never went to the Greek people. They went back to the lenders or to bank coffers, the burdens of which the Greek people are paying for. 
"Behind the words", 13/2/2015

Hope this suffices --there's a lot more-- to show why the Communist Party of Greece does not recognize, and will not recognize, any "national debt" of the Greek people toward its so-called "partners" in the IMF, the EU, the ECB, and their affiliated usurers and loan sharks. If they want more, we can send them the banks, ship tycoons and stockholders they have unilaterally made richer by bleeding millions to death -- thousands, literally so; "send them" minus their assets of course. These belong to those who have paid for them -- generations of immiserated Greek workers, that is.

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