Internet Statement 2010-18


Greek conditions?

Maria Weiß,  May 4, 2010     

Greece has developed a debt crisis which led the country to the verge of state bankcruptcy. This mightily stirred up too the bourgoisie of the rest of the EU and made them look for “solutions” by all means. Recently a so-called “solution” has been found and that sounds like this: Greece is given a guarantee/bond amounting to 110 billion Euro (for the first) from EU countries, of which Germany is taking over 22 billion Euro within the next three years. The IMF (at the moment under French chairmanship) has already announced that it will take over control of the Greek budget for at least 10 years. It finances 30 billions of the package, while the EU states are to take over 80 billions.

A guarantee means that money being made available to Greece now by banks, e.g. the KfW, and other international banks, in order for her to her debts, is vouched for the remaining EU states, especially France and Germany. Yet, the situation, e.g. in our country, is that the state itself is in debt up to the ears and this for decades; that literally 1.69 trillion Euro of debts exist and thus it is a really foolhardy enterprise now to take over the guarantee for other states as well. There are attempts of calming down the population, it is for keeping the Euro stable and no state money would flow as Merkel assured on TV yesterday evening, it was just a security for the banks, which was to be redeemed only if Greece would not manage to come out of its debts.

The Greek governemnt is forced to push an extremely tough cut down program against the own population, which has already faced massive resistance and does continuously. Today an occupation of the Akropolis has been carried out by various workers and clerks and trade unionists, where it was demanded: “People of Europe -Rise Up!” This is not altogether wrong as an appeal. As is our country as well as in many other European states the situation is not that different to Greece. It simply has not broken out so explosively until now because these countries take up a different position economically and internationally within the financial system and because apparently in the case of Greece this “bankruptcy” was internationally forced a bit by so-called rating agencies, coming from the USA and GB, thus belonging to the US and international financial oligarchy, having given their vote accordingly. Yes - there is the question - why? What is on the agenda here really? Should one appeal now that the Greek population storms the state and should one support this here and do this here as well?

For this a different situation would be necessary, though, or it does not seem to have advanced quite that far. So there is the question what to advise to the Greek colleagues somehow. One thing is for sure: the people, neither in Greece nor anywhere else, in other European countries, are not to be blamed for this crisis. It is homemade by the relevant bourgois state apparatus and has not emerged in a rush. In Greece, for example, it is something that has existed there for many, many years, that the economy is built on tick there and that the economic structure of the country is thus that, for example, the productive basis is relatively small and instead of it there is a huge civil service sector. This civil service sector comprises more than 70 percent of the gross domestic product. In this civil service sector there is naturally the whole tourism field, but also other fields. Furthermore, Greece has apparently, at least as it is given by presentations one gets had, a very corpulent and extensive clerk and officer system so far, where they not always act according to law and order, but to favour and roped parties. Now then, we know that from other states, this is not something that special. This field costs a lot of money and this money was tried to bring about by continuously refreshed credit borrowing. That this is to collapse one day, is just natural. The fatal thing for the remaining European bourgoisies is just that it is a Euro country, so, of course, they are alarmed because the Euro is in danger. The Euro threatens to be devaluated and this is naturally not suitable to anyone.

Surely, it was like this, that in the background international competition plays a significant role and it was ignited somehow. You can also see it because there at the same time also other countries, other economically or financially weaker states, e.g. Portugal, Ireland and Spain are talked of as next candidates, but the structure there is not necessarily identical to the one in Greece. Germany also is quite sensible, for example, concerning the Euro because Germany is an export country, lives from export to about 50 %, yet, the export goes to EU/Euro countries to about 80 % again. If something breaks in there, then this will have an effect non us as well, which naturally gets the government alarmed.

After the first reactions have gone like this: “Greece out of the EU”, and, for example, expressed a bit more politely: “An EU country must have the right to leave.” - the right, it will have it anyway, but it cannot be excluded, this would contradict the EU treaty - here within a few weeks in March and April they proceeded to think about if one should not rather put on top of the state debts already existing here even a further gurantee in order to calm down the situation. Of course, no one know if this is actually the case here. It is the wish of the bourgoisie.

The question being correctly raised by some representatives is how to cure such a state. What is the right way? Putting guarantees on top, that means securing further making debts and feeding the banks with it or going a completely different way? Yesterday one the appearing financial experts said in an extra programme of the ARD, he would suggest something altogether different. What they did now, in his opinion it was some kind of passing through the banks only profited from, that means new credits were guaranteed for, for further credits, for further debt contracting there is a guarantee, so that these debts can be incurred by Greece. However, that means nothing else that there is a passing through of money somehow, on the one hand further credits are given and on the other hand debts are paid with them. Yet, by this the country does not gain anything and this has a very true aspect. He said what was actually necessary, that was “fresh money”, meaning money which does not go into paying debts, but is mainly used for investments, so that something like a value can be created in that country at all leading to new taxes and tributes, which are available to the state then, so that debts can be paid. This is different to such a passing through which happens now. Yet, this would mean that one would have to change something concerning the currency in Greece. However, the all the remaining EU society, above all the Federal Republic of Germany, would not want this at all. As this would change the whole Euro system crucially, it would shake it and this does not suit them absolutely. Yet, the question is what is best for the country and for the masses and not what is best for the banks and bourgoisie.

The whole affair also shows the explosiveness of such a currency union. It is very clear that at the moment when in one country there is a break in, basically a considerable devaluation of the currency emerges, this has to effect all the others. This was clear from the very beginning before the Euro had been introduced. They still introduced it and ignored these kind of doubts. Now, here is the mess. And that it would come one day, has been quite clear because there simply is unbalanced/uneven development of the various states and such events like this cannot be excluded. Above all there is internatioal competition and certain oligarchs and magnates who naturally like to turn such knobs in order to maximise their own profits even further. These are obviously situated at the Wall street, but not necessarily only there. You cannot look at the USA only in this context, there are further candidates internationally for such things.

Thus, this crisis shows a certain weakness of the whole construction of this currency union in Europe. Of course, it is also very remarkable that in our country the resistance and the resistance developing in Greece from the side of the mass against this rigorous "cut down program", meaning fleecing program is being repressed quite considerably in the news here. For example, there is this action at the Akropolis not reported here, protests of the Greek population against this fleecing program are absolutely justified. Surely it is no solution to conduct state finance by further fleecing and so-called cutting down at the masses of the working population. There are also suggestions from the population that one gets the money from those who have got it through or who have been put in the pillory because of corruption and nepotism. This is something that is surely good and one can do, but this is not a concept for an economic system yet. What would have to take place, would be a systematic building up from the bottom.

The positive side of the Greece crisis is very obviously that the contributions to certain doubtful and extremely expensive programs in the energy politics are being reduced. In a way this is also the time for the trade unions to exercise solidarity with the Greek colleagues, to support their justified demands, their protest. Not "the" Greeks have lived beyond their means, the state has lived beyond its means, like everywhere, as is the case here and the ruling class and the financial capital have profited from it now as ever. What is happening here is the the following: the investement banker buy loans, the banks buy loans as well and expect the tax payers of the various countries pay for it. This is nothing else than a further exploitation, another exploitation program of this very bank and financial capital the state is dependent on and the state is entangled and mixed up with.
It only just wanted that Merkel and our own government appeal to the Greeks to "cut down". After this has profited from it for years and still does, there is no justification what so ever for this. It is even thus, the Greeks have every right to protest against it because the whole affair they are not responsible for is being retargeted on them. Responsible is the ruling class in our country as well as the other EU countries and, of course, in Greece and that is why one has to take strong action against it. One also has to absolutely step in the way of the attempts of the ruling circles to agitate the populations of the relevant countries against each other. This is out of the question! The contradictions are the same everywhere and here just like in Greece as well as in every other European countries it is operated so that the masses are to take all the burden. And there must be an end to this! So from this point of view the appeal certain forces in Greece have done at their march to the Acroppoluis or at their occupation of the Acropolis, namely "Europe - Stand Up!" or "Europa - Rise up!" is absolutely right, principally right.
On the parole now heard in Greece more often "[den Reichen an die Pfründe": Certainly, this is understandable, there are multi-millionaires also in Greece, people, who live on the fat of the land, who are completely diverted from reality. It is just that these people, they are involved in this very bank and speculation scheme, that is why one will surely not get very far by this method alone. It is much more effective to think about what kind of structure, what kind of society and state we need in Greece and in all of Europe. All progressive people interested in revolution in Greece as well as in the rest of Europe and finally international are appealed to think about these things with every determination and energy. At the same time one has to counteract the separation manoeuvres of the ruling reactionary classes and the attempts to agitate the masses against each other.

If "our own" political representatives stand there and pretend to represent not only the interests of our country, but also of all of Europe, then this is completely upside down. It cannot be in the interest of the masses and not of Europe either that the contradictions aggravate in this way, so that financial capital and the state belonging to it pile up more and more mountains of debts on the one hand, of demands on the other hand they think they can let the masses pay for one day. That this does not work, we can see in Greece now and this is very good.

[translation from the German original]