News From The Front

Friends are in Greece and provide a report:

We have been here in Greece for over a month now and as you know we are 250 miles and two mountain ranges from Athens,little has changed. All the small Greek businesses and shops feature people working hard long hours. The big difference is that many transactions do not go through the cash register. Income and VAT taxes are avoided everywhere,and the 1st quarter government surplus was wiped out in April. The government will run out of cash in mid July. If Greek totally defaults, then European banks, read sovereign supported, will be in bigger trouble.

I believe that the far leftist party is counting on calling Merkel’s bluff to get a further rescue package. In the meantime, non essential civil servants have not been paid for two months and Greek electric power distributors owe foreign suppliers 300 million. They are threatening to cut off the supplies soon. The public, i.e. the press,are afraid that Merkel isn’t bluffing and might very well vote conservative. We will know June 18th.

I don’t think Merkel is bluffing. It is long past that, and anyway not her style. It is sad that this is the heritage of the people who built this more than two thousand years ago.


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