Greece is heading down the road of austerity, now selling off it's land and assets to pay their creditors. Literally the beautiful beaches of Greece are for sale.
Where have we seen this before? A crisis to advance a privatization agenda.
This is in a midst of a new loan approved and a new bail out in the mix.
The euro area approved its share of a 12 billion-euro ($17.4 billion) aid payment for Greece and pledged to complete work in the coming weeks on a second rescue package for the cash-strapped nation to prevent a default.
Finance ministers agreed to disburse 8.7 billion euros of loans under last year’s 110 billion-euro bailout by July 15, rewarding Greek Premier George Papandreou for pushing an extra austerity plan through parliament. The International Monetary Fund is due to provide the rest of the July aid installment, the fifth under the 2010 package.
All of this sell out is the midst of violent protests, where many are being injured and the government is tear gassing citizens. Why are the people of Greece erupting like Mount Vesuvius? The citizens and taxpayers are being forced to pay for the bail outs of the banks.
The latest austerity package passed by the Greece parliament is beyond belief. The package is $113 billion in privatization and cuts.
The new austerity measures include a sale of $72 billion in public assets and $41 billion in additional tax increases and spending cuts. These new taxes will affect people earning as little as $12,000 and will include a new tax on people earning over $17,000 annually. Also included are new increases in consumer taxes, increased taxes on businesses and further cuts in public employment.
The new measures are on top of the austerity program enacted last year that included a 20 percent to 30 percent reduction in public sector wages, cuts in unemployment benefits and a suspension of a 2009 poverty support program. In addition, last year's measures suspended collective bargaining; lowered and froze public pension payments; raised the retirement age for public pensions; increased the value-added tax from 19 percent to 23 percent; imposed consumption taxes on fuel, tobacco and alcohol; and raised income taxes on middle-income earners.
The cuts to date have caused 800,000 Greeks to lose their jobs. So, will this all work and enable Greece to get out of debt? Most are saying no, it only delays the inevitable.
Think this is far away and doesn't affect you? Think again, the IMF and banks are just itching to take away your social security and medicare, using almost identical excuses.