Protesters face riot police during an anti-austerity demonstration near parliament in the centre of Athens. With the Greek government facing collapse, Europe is warned of financial chaos. Photograph: Panagiotis Tzamaros/AFP/Getty
This is what I been writing about since the first of the year. I am afraid we have arrived at a pivotal point in global history; Economic stabilization is the key to preventing a full meltdown of the EU and Europe, and perhaps avoid a global economic calamity.
To understand what is going on, here are a few articles:
Guardian UK – Greek Crisis Sends World Markets into Turmoil
Guardian UK – Europe Warned of Financial Chaos Over Greek Debt Crisis
The Greek government was on the brink of collapse after pitched battles on the streets of Athens on Wednesday, sending world stocks tumbling as EU leaders squabbled over whether and how to launch a second attempt to keep Greece from insolvency.
George Papandreou, the socialist prime minister, appeared to admit defeat by offering to dissolve his government and form a national unity coalition, but admitted his efforts to negotiate with the opposition conservatives had failed.
“Tomorrow I will form a new government, and then I will ask for a vote of confidence,” Papandreou said on state television. The move followed intense but fruitless negotiations with the conservative New Democracy party to engineer a consensus behind the savage public spending cuts deemed necessary and a wholesale privatisation programme.
The opposition had called for Papandreou’s resignation and a renegotiation of the bailout terms with the EU, the European Central Bank and the International Monetary Fund as the price for its assent to a national coalition.
Earlier, riot police had battled with tens of thousands of protesters in the capital against the radical austerity measures being imposed to try to secure a second bailout in a year, running to tens of billions of euros.
EU governments, the ECB, and the European Commission were gridlocked over how to respond to the debt emergency, which pushed Greece closer to sovereign default, possibly triggering a fresh European banking crisis.
A sense of siege descended on Brussels as the Greek drama appeared to be heading towards a denouement. The ECB warned that a Greek default could spark “contagion” across Europe, causing Greek banks to implode and inflicting major damage on the big banks in France and Germany.
“It looks like a week of chaos,” said a European official in Brussels. Senior diplomats in Brussels said that an emergency meeting of the 17 eurozone finance ministers on Tuesday had failed to bridge the differences over how to construct a second bailout in a year for Greece, running to almost €100bn. In May last year the EU and the IMF put together a €110bn bailout for Greece, the first in a single currency country. That experiment has failed. Ireland and Portugal have since also needed to be rescued from national insolvency.
“The euro area faces a very challenging situation that comes mostly from the interconnection of the sovereign debt crisis and the situation of the banking sector,” the ECB said. “Greece could have a contagion effect,” added Vitor Constancio, an ECB vice-president.
The Perfect Storm May Threaten Global Economy – click here
100% of what is collected is absorbed solely by interest on the Federal Debt … all individual income tax revenues are gone before one nickel is spent on the services taxpayers expect from government.”
-Grace Commission report submitted to President Ronald Reagan – January 15, 1984
The Private Sector Survey on Cost Control (PSSCC), commonly referred to as The Grace Commission, was an investigation requested by United States President Ronald Reagan, in 1982. The focus of it was waste and inefficiency in the US Federal government. Its head, businessman J. Peter Grace, asked the members of that commission to “be bold” and “work like tireless bloodhounds. Don’t leave any stone unturned in your search to root out inefficiency.”
Source: Wikipedia, click here
The jobs that have been created by our large multinational corporations, like the bailed-out GE, are primarily outside of the country, as Bernanke admitted.
Source: Robert Scheer at Truthdig
Weak manufacturing and anemic job creation caused the Dow to take a 300 point dive today. As I have written many times here, until the major corporations invest the nearly $3 trillion they have in capital reserves and the banks cut loose on the more than $2 trillion they are sitting on, the U.S. economy will continue to slip and slide.
I heard a housing report this morning and it stated that housing will not return to “normal’ for 5 ~ 8 years.
Job creation is around 200,000 a month for the last three months. We need to be above 250,000 a month over the next 3 years ( easy math ) to get back to 2007 employment levels.
With the Republicans threatening to shut the government down (more blackmail tactics), unless Medicare is “reformed” and trillions cut from the deficit and debt ( two different things), job creation will take a back seat to nasty politics for the foreseeable future.
As I posted recently: There are answers to putting our nation back on the road to recovery. One glaring answer is to let the $2 trillion dollar Bush tax cuts for the wealthy expire next year. This is supported by a recent report from the Center on Budget and Public Policy. The CBPP reports: Simply letting the Bush tax cuts expire on schedule… would stabilize the debt-to-GDP ratio for the next decade.
Read related Atlantic Monthly article: Does Washington DC Care About the Economy Anymore?
Matt Taibbi will be up for a Pulitizer Prize if he keeps writing these excellent exposes on corruption in Wall Street dealings.
People vs. Goldman Sachs by Matt Taibbi, Rolling Stone Magazine, click here
EXCERPT: They weren’t murderers or anything; they had merely stolen more money than most people can rationally conceive of, from their own customers, in a few blinks of an eye. But then they went one step further. They came to Washington, took an oath before Congress, and lied about it.
Thanks to an extraordinary investigative effort by a Senate subcommittee that unilaterally decided to take up the burden the criminal justice system has repeatedly refused to shoulder, we now know exactly what Goldman Sachs executives like Lloyd Blankfein and Daniel Sparks lied about. We know exactly how they and other top Goldman executives, including David Viniar and Thomas Montag, defrauded their clients. America has been waiting for a case to bring against Wall Street. Here it is, and the evidence has been gift-wrapped and left at the doorstep of federal prosecutors, evidence that doesn’t leave much doubt: Goldman Sachs should stand trial.
Read entire article or buy in the May 26th issue of Rolling Stone, click here
From the makers of Beyond Elections, this new feature-length documentary FILM: Crossing the American Crises: From Collapse to Action takes us across the country amidst the economic collapse, to the grassroots solutions in the hands of the people.
Join us for the DC premier screening of this new film, followed by an interactive panel discussion that will include the filmmakers, Silvia, Michael, and John Schmitt, senior economist with CEPR (who appears in the film).
We will appreciate a suggested donation of $5 help us cover the cost of the event but no one will be turned away for lack of funds.
Co-sponsors: IPS’ Inequality and the Common Good project, Faith & Money Network, Code Pink, Center for Economic Policy Research, Empower DC, and Common Security DC.
On September 15, 2008, the United States fell into the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression. The same day filmmakers Sílvia Leindecker and Michael Fox set out on a trip around the country to ask the American people what they had to say about it. In 2010, they went back to see how things had changed. While financial forecasters say the recession is over, Leindecker’s and Fox’s Crossing the American Crises: From Collapse to Action shows that the reality is otherwise.
The featured stories reveal desperation, indignation, hope, dreams and a disastrous economic breakdown; chaos generated by a system of inequality. The film also shows that the financial meltdown is just one of several human rights crises now shaking the United States—in housing, education, health care, etc. and that the solutions to “Crossing the American Crises” are in the hands of the people.
Source: Institute for Policy Studies
The takeover of the NYSE by Germany’s Bourse, or Deutsche Börse, is an attack on our economic authority and should not be allowed. Contact your representative about this important pending decision.
NY Times reports: The Nasdaq OMX Group and the Intercontinental Exchange announced on Monday that they would take their $11 billion takeover offer for NYSE Euronext directly to the company’s shareholders.
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