Bill Black: Roger Cohen Laments his Inadequate Schadenfreude Because the Greeks Don’t Suffer Enough

Yves here. I held off from publishing this Bill Black post yesterday because I didn’t want to double up on Greece-related posts, but with the game of chicken moving into the train wreck phase, more intense coverage seems inevitable.

I saw the New York Times op ed that Black shreds in this post when it first ran and was appalled. It was as close as you can get in the US MSM to the “lazy Greeks” bigotry that is common in the German media. The comments in the New York Times were running roughly 90% against when I took a gander through them. This piece is also part of an outburst of not-very-well disguised hostility towards Greece, apparently for the crime of having had debt levels blow out as a result of the financial crisis, and then having Eurocrats mismanage post-crisis economic policies and engage in extend and pretend, which has led to depression-induced misery in Greece and ire among its creditors. For instance, a more sophisticated version of this sort of piece is “Let the Greeks eat shit and die leave the Eurozone and take their lumps, like a Financial Times op-ed, Greeks chose poverty, let them have their way. Just like the rash of pieces we’ve seen justifying why having the top 1%/01% is just the result of the workings of nature, brace yourself for even more of this sort of thing if Greece does indeed default.

By Bill Black, the author of The Best Way to Rob a Bank is to Own One and an associate professor of economics and law at the University of Missouri-Kansas City. Jointly published with New Economic Perspectives

Schadenfreude” is a German word that describes taking a “malicious, gloating pleasure in the suffering of other people.” It is a form of sadism. Roger Cohen has written an extraordinary column describing how much he hates the Greek people. Change the name “Greek” to almost any other group and it is certain that the New York Times would refuse to print such a mass of ethnic slurs. The Greeks are fair game, however, for even the crudest slurs in the NYT.

But what causes Cohen’s June 8, 2015 column attacking the Greek people to reach a new level in hate speech is this paragraph.

The European Union has done its healing work here. There will not be another civil war, come what may. The sun will still shine; a gazillion islands will still delight; Greeks will still curse every form of authority; they will still smoke in every restaurant in defiance of the law; they will still have more money than they appear to have; tables in cheap “tavernas” will still offer views that have no price. A Greek meltdown is not the same as a Slovakian meltdown. Life is not just.

Did you get that last sentence? Cohen despairs that “life is not just” because the Greek people, who he makes clear he despises, are not suffering enough to slake Cohen’s hate – and will not suffer enough for Cohen’s taste even if the troika pushes Greece into its second, post-crisis Great Depression. Cohen takes a malicious, gloating pleasure in the suffering of the Greek people, but he laments that his schadenfreude is incomplete because the Greeks will still have beautiful, sun lit islands. In a “just” world the Greeks would suffer far more, and feed Cohen’s joy.

For the sake of brevity I will simply mention and provide the links to three articles that describe the “healing work” of the EU (the most economically illiterate and vicious member of the troika). “Healing” is a particularly Orwellian word usage by Cohen. The reality is that the troika’s austerity demands are destroying health care in Greece. Cohen would know this if he read the relevant article published by an obscure newspaper entitled the NYT about a week before Cohen’s column. And the Cohen meme, so reminiscent of every ethnic slur, about the happy but shiftless and always complaining Greeks might have been informed by a column in that same obscure paper that explained how Greek suicide rates had surged dramatically as the troika’s austerity demands forced the Greek economy into worse than Great Depression levels of unemployment and greatly increased poverty. Cohen’s concern for smoke in Greece is laudatory. Cohen is a cheerleader and apologist for the troika’s austerity that has led the desperate Greek people to cut down public forests to burn the wood to keep their homes and children warm – causing dangerous pollution and some fatal home fires. The Wall Street Journal article notes:

Such woodcutting was last common in Greece during Germany’s brutal occupation in the 1940s, underscoring how five years of recession and waves of austerity measures have spawned drastic measures.

The EU’s austerity demands are driven most fervently by Germany and its closest allies.

Not that it will do any good, but people who do not take a malicious, gloating pleasure in the pointless suffering of the Greek people through self-destructive austerity can join me in calling on the New York Times to retract Cohen’s exercise in sadism and ethnic slurs. I will not bother asking Cohen to apologize for there is no chance that it would be sincere.

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  1. Steve

    Is it only me, but doesn’t it seem like NYT columnists are all going off the tracks. Joining their foreign policy guru Tom F, whose columns were appropriately skewered by Matt Tiabbi, are David Brooks and Maureen Dowd,whose writings are so out there that they seem to be the musings of disturbed minds. Then we have Roger Cohen who is also off the deep end most of the time. This article on Greece is too much. Even Nick Kristoff seems like he is losing it. Time for some serious changes in the gray lady’s commentariat.

    1. RUKidding

      NYT was never ever particularly “liberal,” but like NPR – which is fully propaganda now – it used to provide a somewhat more balanced view of the news (not nooz) and had a somewhat decent amount of articles about foreign affairs/issues. But IMO those days ended long long ago, especially since 9/11.

      I stopped reading the NYT at least a decade ago other than sometimes reading specific articles or editorials from blog links.

      The “journalists” that you mention have all been off the charts since forever, albeit it sounds like they’ve moved ever further nutty rightward. As we witness with the extremists on the political right in the USA, such extremists tend to appear to be barking mad to someone who remains at least somewhat sane, rational and grounded. This is not snark. I am speaking quite honestly from my perspective.

      People constantly want to make false equivalencies about alleged “crazies” on the so-called “extremist left.” I’d really love to see true examples of such “extremists on the left.” If they are there, then I don’t know who they are. But the rightwing has some real full-on nutbars imo. The NYT, allegedly this bastion of dastardly horrid terrible “liberalism,” just seems to me another version of the worst that Fox & that ilk can pump out.

      Unfortunately, a lot of citizens have been carefully manipulated – like boiling frogs – to not realize how FUBAR NYT is anymore.

  2. C

    This epitomizes why I’ve basically stopped reading the NYT. The paper does still do some good long-form journalism but at the editorial level they maintain a detatched view of the world that seems best characterized by their two stars Friedman and Brooks. The former is such a “high level thinker” that he cannot be bothered forming a coherent sentence. The latter is so certain of his own rightness or righteousness that he is angry at any who would fail to obey.

    Their reporting, while it is often good, also seems to specialize in repeating the “right things” from their well-placed sources. Matt Taibbi flagged a great example of that the other day:

    So thank you for posting this. Every time I am tempted to return the The Paper of Record ™ I see something like this and decide not to waste my time.

    1. ProNewerDeal

      I would love to see the Offshore Outsourcing cheerleaders like Friedman & Brooks, offshore outsourced themselves. There must be countless people in an English-speaking “emerging nation” like India or South Africa, with the moderately decent writing skills on the same or greater level as Friedman, who have the “capability” to incorrect in 80%+ of their predictions, and to fellate the US power elite on 100% of opportunities to do so, at a ~$10K annual salary. If required, such editorialists could write under a WASP-ish pseudonym.

      After all, wouldn’t Friedman himself claim that such an “resource action” would be “the corporation’s fiduciary responsibility to do so”, “since the world is flat”!

    2. Tammy

      I don’t think you’re giving the credit due to David Brooks’ objective coverage, beginning with the division within American politics during Obama’s first presidential term. I know playing favorites is poor sportsmanship but Krugman and Brooks are two of The Times best journalists.

      The fact that they don’t have the correct answers by political commentators standards is a telling sign in itself.

      1. KFritz

        Here’s something “objective” about David Brooks: if the thought patterns that sustain him as a NYT columnist ceased to exist, the planet would be a better place.

      2. El Guapo

        Brooks is not a journalist, he is a writer of insipid opinion pieces. He is also a stupid moron.

  3. sufferinsuccotash

    The NYT lost me 12 years ago with Judith Miller.
    Aside from Krugman’s blog and the crossword it’s a nothingburger.

    1. Cugel

      This is what generally passes for commentary in the “liberal media”. Since the U.S. is essentially a bystander in the Euro crisis I’m not sure what difference it makes, but sure, U.S. media elites are all for the bankers, just as they are on every other issue. The only thing the media here will say about the Greek crisis is that the Greeks are led by “leftist extremists” who resisted paying their debts and are now suffering the normal fate of profligates. And there won’t be very much commentary on Grexit at all unless Greece turns into a haven for terrorists and they blow up a cruise-liner or something.

      1. RepubAnon

        It’s also worth noting that Greece could not have joined the Euro without the help of the vampire squid itself, Goldman Sachs – who helped the Greek government hide its debt through the same types of innovative financial products that caused the 2008 Great Recession. Now, the financial press is saying: Hey, Greece – you messed up – you trusted us!

  4. DJG

    The Anglo-American media very often can’t get past the White Man’s Burden. The northern European must go to the Mediterranean and to the Middle East to tame the swarthy ones, who know very little about double-entry bookkeeping (even though it was invented in Italy), controlling their emotions (well, there were the Stoics and the famously impassive Romans), and maintaining a proper correspondence (don’t mention the Persian postal system). And they can’t even make a decent plate of Bubble and Squeak.

    Fortunately, the Greeks are not Muslims. (They belong to that mysterious “Orthodox” church, which is only another part of the problem.) If the Greeks were Muslims, we’d have to invade.

    1. RUKidding

      Props for a terse but accurate response, which made me laugh out loud.

      You can almost see corporate/banker suck-up buffoons like Cohen literally itching to attack the Greeks, but sucks! bc they are sort of Christians and not quite swarthy enough. D*mnitall!

  5. Sally

    The NYT has been supporting almost every US war for decades. They supported most of Reagans adventures in South America in the 80s. The idea they are liberal is a joke. While some news outlets hate being branded liberal, the NYT likes it because enough democrats are fooled into handing over their money for the privelidge of being lied too. They are the Obama/Hillary brigade.

    As with most commercial media today they can’t survive without corporate sponsorship, and that means pushing 1% talking points. The cover price just won’t pay the bills. Chris Hedges was one of their best journalists, so they sacked him, and kept Julie Miller.

    Someone pointed out the other day that every Republican who has announced he is running for president no matter how crazy has been featured on the front page of the NYT. Along with lots of Hillary. Interestingly Bernie Sanders, Hilary’s only current opponent did not get front page billing. He was tucked away on page 17 or some such. They don’t even try to hide their corporate agenda these days.

    By the way is Cohen Jewish? My dad helped liberate Europe 70 years ago from Nazis. It fascinates me how a generation later a race of people who were demonised, and put in baking ovens have become so vicious to their fellow man.

  6. Jazzbuff

    I grew up reading the NYT almost from the time I could read. I have watched them run trial balloons (phony stories) for the government to test public response and attempt to cover for the CIA involvement in drugs (their attacks on Gary Webb). At this point the NYT is only good for understanding TPTB perspective. I have stopped reading and financially supporting the Times years ago.

  7. ltr

    Roger Cohen has in his writing shown himself impossibly prejudiced not just to Greeks but to a range of peoples, so this particular expression of ethnic disdain was no surprise even if dismaying.

  8. Edna M.

    Thanks for posting this. Like a lot of people, I tend to read pieces I know I’ll agree with and so I would have missed how the “other side” thinks, as shown in the Cohen’s NY Times piece.

  9. FluffytheObeseCat

    No one should forget, the New York Times is a money making enterprise. They run these bitchy, poorly thought through clickbait pieces for the same reason Slate does…… eyeballs. And clicks. If Cohen’s haughty, transparent shtick didn’t work for them, his little pearls of wisdom wouldn’t get space. And we wouldn’t be commenting on this op-ed here & now, would we?

  10. David

    “The EU’s austerity demands are driven most fervently by Germany and its closest allies.”

    The president of the EC is from Luxembourg. The head of the IMF is French. The president of the ECB is Italian. Where are the Germans?

    “Such woodcutting was last common in Greece during Germany’s brutal occupation in the 1940s, underscoring how five years of recession and waves of austerity measures have spawned drastic measures.”

    Nice. You didn’t bring up the Elgin marbles. Did that not play into the anti-German theme?

    While I’m not fan of Cohen of the NYT, you didn’t need to sink to his level to make your point.

    1. Pancho

      What you call anti-German sentiment is nothing against the anti-Greek sentiment in Germany, primarily ignited by so called “center right” politicians and media, yet fuelled by most “liberal” and “center left” media the like. It’s like a huge majority of the German public has been waiting all too long to be finally allowed to channel their loads of social chauvinist resentments against the “lazy Greeks”.

      German conservatives both within and outside Merkel’s party clearly play with these resentments in order to create a full scale German dominated Europe, arranged around Germany’s neomercantilist policies.
      So even if Anglophone economists and media – mainstream or heterodox – talk themselves blue in the face criticizing the German stance as illogical, within the German-speaking public sphere they are completely dismissed, laughed at or simply ignored. The criticism simply doesn’t take place. Because their agenda is centered on expanding German Ordnungspolitik on all Europe, even if that means sacrificing economic growth in the Eurozone.
      Here, the widely accepted paradigm is stabilizing German hegemony against the diminishing prospects of economic growth, as the German population is set to shrink to 60 million.

      Now, no matter the nationality of some institutions’ leaders, within the last years Germany has become not only Europe’s unrivalled economic powerhouse, but also the (for now) uncontested political hegemon of the Eurozone.
      Of course, outright fascism is all “so 20th century”. Still, at least this line of German policy amounts to pushing the Southern periphery into total submission to the point of exsanguination. No way this is comparable with the Wehrmacht occupation or even the Shoa, but it is unacceptable – and one could say: rotten – enough to be widely detested and fought against.

  11. Dino Reno

    The Greeks turned to Russia for help. Green light the editorial hatchet job that goes beyond the economic fundamentals into making them the “other.” It’s about to get much uglier.

    1. hemeantwell

      I think you’re absolutely right. Have you seen anything about Syriza engaging Putin-pandering since February?

  12. Wist

    Yves, in your post you state a hostility towards Greece, “apparently for the crime of having debt levels blow out as a result of the financial crisis, and then having Eurocrats mismanage post-crisis economic policies and engage in extend and pretend, which has led to depression-induced misery and ire among its creditors.”

    This simplification of the evil Troika – poor Greeks does not take into consideration the reality of Greek politics and the inability to govern.

    Past recent headlines from Greek newspapers:

    Greek MPs get interest free loans from Parliament. (Parliament additionally voted to keep their “reserves” as Syriza swept up available reserves from municipalities and embassies)..
    Greek government would need 30 years to audit all suspected tax evaders.
    Undeclared work reaches 13.22% (private company audits).
    Greek hospitals on the brink of bankruptcy.
    Greece has asked Switzerland not to name suspected tax evaders.
    Greece owes 4.4 billion Euros to suppliers.
    Greece owes 1.2 billion to pharmaceutical companies.

    In looking at the pharmacist cartel, a “reform” proposed some time ago was for the sale of over-the-counter medicines and baby formula by non-pharmacists. The pharmacists are protected by the government/cartel, hefty profit margins are mandated BY LAW and from one study generic drugs cost as much as 880% above Swedish pricing. Yesterday or the day before the pharmacists went out on strike regarding this “reform” and the Minister of Health (Panagiotis Kouroumplis) argued against the creditor insistence on this deregulation.

    Health care: According to the Proto Thema newspaper, the National Health System (ESY) received ZERO state funding between the months of February and April. For the first four months of 2015 they received 43.4 million Euros for their operational needs. During the same period in 2014 hospitals received 229.6 million Euros for operational needs in addition to 400 million for the repayment of outstanding debt. This year the Greek hospitals have not received any funds to repay debts.

    Tax evasion has been a chronic problem with serial amnesties, lack of prosecution/fines and legislation that promotes nonpayment. The Greek government is proposing foreclosure protection of up to 300,000 euros for a primary home and an annual income (declared) of less than 50,000 Euros. The upper limit for total wealth would be 500,000 Euros. The ECB response, “the very broad scope of eligible debtors, which goes beyond the protection of vulnerable and low income debtors, may create moral hazard and could lead to strategic defaults, undermining the payment culture and future credit growth. It is likely that the prohibitions in the draft law will incentivize debtors who are not in need of protection to stop meeting their full obligations or reduce them significantly, even if they have the means to meet them in full.”

    The current government has turned over a previous “reform” of civil service bloat by rehiring cleaning ladies as a propaganda tool to bolster public perception. At the time this rehiring is done, Syriza has stopped payment on up to 85% of infrastructure projects (many subsidized by the EU). Essentially they are halting good paying jobs and are subject to potential reimbursement to the EU.

    On 6/1/15 the European Guardian reported that “High Ranking officials within the Greek Coastguard are suspected of having cooperated with human traffickers. Minister Theodoris Dritsas is among the suspects. Among the suspects are three high ranking officials within Greek Coastguard and alternate Minister of Shipping and the Agean, Theodoris Dritsas. Officials within the Greek intelligence Police are also being investigated for involvement with human traffickers. One of the suspects, a 66 year old male, has ties to the radical leftist party Syriza. He was investigated by the Greek Anti-Terror police in 2008-2009 for weapons delivery to guerrilla groups. The 66 year old is suspected of releasing immigrants by order of the human traffickers. During a recorded phone call the parties discussed forcing Citizen Protection Minister Yiannis Ponousis to resign as they believed that he stood in the way of human trafficking.”

    During the approximate 120 days in office Syriza has not proposed any growth plans. Varoufakis argues that Greece needs support to begin reforming.

    Greece is burdened with cartelism, patronage, bribery, tax evasion, nepotism, extortion, an archaic judiciary/justice system, an inability to collect taxes, an elite that benefits from a status quo, a bloated civil service and 130+ pension plans that can’t afford the bill that patronage has provided. During the borrowing boom Greece established 13th and possible 14th month pension benefits due to “economic convergence”.

    The anti-Greek sentiment that you refer to is frustration in getting any reforms legislated AND enacted. Additionally it is the frustration that the Greek government is expecting significant assistance with no strings attached…after years of nonperformance. Every man, woman and child in Germany is on the hook for approximately 580 Euros (per person) for the Greek adventure.

    When the technocrats went to Athens to audit books, they were quarantined to their hotel; couldn’t talk to government officials and had their pictures plastered in the local papers (hence needing extra security).

    No one has clean hands in these issues but the Greeks themselves democratically voted for and have a current government that is incapable. The past memorandums had conditions for structural changes that hopefully would benefit Greece in the long run. Few reforms were legislated. Fewer were enacted. Fewer complied with.

    Many are suffering in Greece, but a lot of the current suffering is due to an incompetent government and Greek’s internal structural issues. If the government doesn’t fund their health care, people will suffer.

    Currently people are dying in Greece due to lack of dialysis.

    I don’t think that is due to “Eurocrat mismanagement”.

    1. alex morfesis

      there are many things you say i would love to agree with but since you are so willing to parrot the noise that comes out of your media, is there really any reason to have a civil conversation with you…you are obviously speaking from the point of view of a german citizen who has been told the reason their taxes are high and they cant buy a home is due to the “heavy burden” of subsidizing those non northern members of the eu…sweden must sell pharma for one euro for thirty pills if your amusing attack on pharmacists in greece is to be accepted…i can not speak on what it might be today as i have not been to hellas in over five years, but pharma was one tenth the cost of usa and half the cost of uk from my personal experience. the pharmacists were friendly, hard working and efficient…and greece does not really have supermarkets…they have large bodegas for those in new york living in ethnic neighborhoods…this is an example of how the troika wasted five years looking to spend time drinking ouzo and filling up space with ideas for “reforms” for something that did not need fixing…
      i feel for you…but you are being lied to…hey…i am the first to admit many of the keystone cops who pass for mp’s in hellas should have asked to audition for a show on the comedy channel…
      as to big mouth glezos…if you think he actually was at the acropolis and pulled down a nazi flag and then magically dropped it into a cave, there is a bridge that runs into brooklyn that i can sell you…easy terms…only ten percent down…see that was not so hard…now your turn…you can joke about a finance minister who somehow claimed he “only” took a 100 thousand euro bribe when the guy who gave it said it was 300 thousand…details details…oh…and as to this story you are told about the BIG subsidy greek farmers get from the hard working northern europeans…it is less than 600 euro per greek farmer per year…now how much eu subsidy money does the average german farmer get…oh…just thirty THOUSAND euros per year…yes yes…german farms are much bigger than those tiny greek farms…but speaking of other countries paying for some lazy slackers…since germany has less than 250 working tanks to defend against a russian attack…shouldn’t we americans be crying about the 500 PER YEAR we americans have to pay in military costs per person so that hanz and gudrun can sleep easy at night…so we pay out each year for how many years now…and you are crying for ONE YEARS WORTH of the same money…hmmmm…are we ever going to speak openly and directly about how things are and how to move forward…must we really talk past each other

      1. jonboinAR

        A problem I have when I read about issues such as Grexit is that those who are keenly interested, have some knowledge, and wish to talk about what they know are very often intolerant of those who either express opinions or give facts (admittedly its hard to know the difference when you’re pretty ignorant on the subject, as I am, and just trying to learn something) that might somewhat ameliorate the keenly expressed viewpoint of the former partisan. IOW, nearly everyone appears to default to taking sides and hurling propaganda missiles at anyone who fails to adhere to their POV.

        From what I’ve understood so far it looks like the official Euro position has been rigidly intolerant of Greek default, restructuring or debt forgiveness, and their press backers and other mouthpieces have come close to schadenfreude by expressing Greek suffering in terms of “healing”, for example, BUT ALSO, a great deal of the Greek system may be severely corrupt, that there may well be be a great deal of Greek wealth holding that has never, to this date, been interested in ponying up to help solve the country’s problems, and other things that are true, as well, and germaine, but don’t completely support one sides rhetoric.

        It doesn’t help my understanding, at least, when we demonize someone who adds grey tones to a black/white painted scenario as necessarily an heartless, pasty-skinned, brown-skinned hating xenophobe. I find, in real situations, that is, those in which I’m close enough to actually know details, that both sides usually have some fault and that it doesn’t hurt the solution to try to discover what that is.

        1. jonboinAR

          I have to retract some of that. Rereading AM’s post I don’t see the xenophobe card being pulled, so that was false on my part. I do see it more than I would consider to be helpful, though, as it can be used to intimidate an opposing POV. I do stand by my contention that both POV’s likely contakn truth and that it can’t hurt to dispassionately weigh both of them.

        2. wist

          I read a lot about the Greek situation from many worldwide sources. I will not attempt to “talk past you” nor do I close out any “civil conversation” due to a “parroted” position. I am unfamiliar with the German farm system nor did I discuss tanks. I did briefly discuss:
          Funding of health care
          Civil Service bloat

          If you had a good experience with pharmacists in Greece, good for you. It does not change the fact that it is a cartel monopoly that does not allow competition that could benefit the Greek citizenry.

          It is obvious you think the Troika has “wasted five years” spending time “filling up space with ideas for “reforms” for something that did not need fixing.”

          I would beg to differ as I think Greece has been slow to embrace reform and there are many things that do need fixing.

          I support Greece severing relations with the EU, IMF and the ECB; moving to the Drachma and repudiating debt. In this way the Greeks can live with their own decisions and the blame game will be minimized. Will this aid the Humanitarian situation in Greece…maybe a little but probably not. Will it benefit Greece over the extended long term…maybe but probably not. (In my own opinion I think you may see chaos and Greece becoming somewhat like Venezuela but without the oil).

          I do think if “rupture” is achieved, the Greeks will be responsible for their own future and will have to be held responsible for the results. If they want to pay fakelaki…so be it. If they don’t want to reform…OK. If they accept their social and economic structure as it is…no problem.

          Good luck……………………………

          1. cassandra

            I am leery whenever I see the word “reform”. It should mean an improving correction, but has now come to be used more as a euphemistic excuse for imposing some form of austerity on the 99%, to the benefit of the 1%. Semantics and propaganda aside aside, this exchange of viewpoints raises the obvious question: if Greek economic behavior were really as bad as asserted by the EU et al., whose bright idea, and with what motive, was it to invite these so-called economic reprobates into the EU in the first place? Most here know both the history and the answer. The obvious solution is a parting of the ways, but like a long but poorly matched marriage, a Grexit is no simple matter for anyone.

    2. Sokratis Ioannidis

      I want to answer to only one: baby formula has been on super markets for a few years now. I remember this Lagarde person parotting about the “baby formula issue” in April. It seems all these grand institutions have no money to pay a few people to acquire some actual knowledge of the facts. But I’m sure IMF, Commission and media lie knowingly. They lie. They say lies.
      Ask them what time it is and they will LIE. They are liars. I mean they fail to say the truth.

  13. D. Galanis

    Is Judith Miller happy or unhappy about the Greek situation? Is EZ flat or round? What on earth is Jill tatooing on her arm right now? Is her dog still alive? Is Maureen over her republican brother or not yet?

  14. equote

    “A basic mathematical as well as political principle is at work: Debts that can’t be paid, won’t be.” Michael Hudson
    Creditors don’t accept the ‘principle’ and make the loans anyway; it looks like they want pound(s) of flesh…(and repayment).

  15. susan the other

    “The EU has done its healing work here. There will not be another civil war.” Whose civil war is he referring to? It sounds to me like Roger is saying the EU stalled Greece long enough to shore up Deutsche Bank and keep all the rest of the periphery in line. The EU hasn’t healed anything. They are in complete disarray. The IMF just walked away from the talks and flew back to Washington. Odd. And as far as Germany and her “allies” goes – that only refers to one thing, the USA and all our banks holding all those CDS which will cause their own bankruptcies if a haircut or a “restructuring” of the Greek debt is even attempted. The great financial crisis wasn’t caused by Greece. It was caused by the financial cartel which is now desperate for scape goats. And secret austerity. We would all be better off if world finance would admit that they got caught playing fast and loose, trying to make one last penny, when they knew the game was over. And the rest of us thought if money was easy a crisis couldn’t possibly be looming. Not even a climate crisis to end all crises. The banks are responsible for this whole damn mess.

  16. sd

    Worth mentioning: Astoria, Queens has a significantly large population of Greek people. An Op Ed in the NY Times will be widely read and disseminated.

  17. Demeter

    The incoherency and panic in the NYT is a sign that the applecart is tipping over, and all the plans of the 1% are going to smash. They are not even capable of smashing the little people in the process as they struggle to save themselves. I can see this as a good sign…provided we the People don’t stop that applecart from spilling its bounty on us again with some stupid bailout or bail-in or whatever the latest scam is called.

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