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Guest Post: The Icelandic Success Story

Tyler Durden's picture




 

Submitted by John Aziz of Azizonomics

The Icelandic Success Story

Emotionally, I love Iceland’s financial policies since the crash of 2008:

Iceland

Iceland went after the people who caused the crisis — the bankers who created and sold the junk products — and tried to shield the general population.

But what Iceland did is not just emotionally satisfying. Iceland is recovering, while the rest of the Western world — which bailed out the bankers and left the general population to pay for the bankers’ excess — is not.

Bloomberg reports:

Few countries blew up more spectacularly than Iceland in the 2008 financial crisis. The local stock market plunged 90 percent; unemployment rose ninefold; inflation shot to more than 18 percent; the country’s biggest banks all failed.

This was no post-Lehman Brothers recession: It was a depression. 

 

Since then, Iceland has turned in a pretty impressive performance. It has repaid International Monetary Fund rescue loans ahead of schedule. Growth this year will be about 2.5 percent, better than most developed economies. Unemployment has fallen by half. In February, Fitch Ratings restored the country’s investment-grade status, approvingly citing its “unorthodox crisis policy response.”

So what exactly did Iceland do?

First, they create an aid package for homeowners:

To homeowners with negative equity, the country offered write-offs that would wipe out debt above 110 percent of the property value. The government also provided means-tested subsidies to reduce mortgage-interest expenses: Those with lower earnings, less home equity and children were granted the most generous support.

Then, they redenominated foreign currency debt into devalued krone, effectively giving creditors a big haircut:

In June 2010, the nation’s Supreme Court gave debtors another break: Bank loans that were indexed to foreign currencies were declared illegal. Because the Icelandic krona plunged 80 percent during the crisis, the cost of repaying foreign debt more than doubled. The ruling let consumers repay the banks as if the loans were in krona.

 

These policies helped consumers erase debt equal to 13 percent of Iceland’s $14 billion economy. Now, consumers have money to spend on other things. It is no accident that the IMF, which granted Iceland loans without imposing its usual austerity strictures, says the recovery is driven by domestic demand.

What this meant is that unsustainable junk was liquidated. While I am no fan of nationalised banks and believe that eventually they should be sold off, there were no quick and easy bailouts that allowed the financial sector to continue with the same unsustainable bubble-based folly they practiced before the crisis (as has happened throughout the rest of the Western world).  

And best of all, Iceland prosecuted the people who caused the crisis, providing a real disincentive (as opposed to more bailouts and bonuses):

Iceland’s special prosecutor has said it may indict as many as 90 people, while more than 200, including the former chief executives at the three biggest banks, face criminal charges.

 

Larus Welding, the former CEO of Glitnir Bank hf, once Iceland’s second biggest, was indicted in December for granting illegal loans and is now waiting to stand trial. The former CEO of Landsbanki Islands hf, Sigurjon Arnason, has endured stints of solitary confinement as his criminal investigation continues.

 

That compares with the U.S., where no top bank executives have faced criminal prosecution for their roles in the subprime mortgage meltdown. The Securities and Exchange Commission said last year it had sanctioned 39 senior officers for conduct related to the housing market meltdown.

Iceland’s approach is very much akin to what I have been advocating — write down the unsustainable debt, liquidate the junk corporations and banks that failed, disincentivise the behaviour that caused the crisis, and provide help to the ordinary individuals in the real economy (as opposed to phoney “stimulus” cash to campaign donors and big finance).

And Iceland has snapped out of its depression. The rest of the West, where banks continue to behave exactly as they did prior to the crisis, not so much.

 

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Sat, 12/08/2012 - 21:15 | 3046231 Abrick
Abrick's picture

That all makes too much sense.  Better add some religion and ideology to confuse the issues.

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 21:24 | 3046246 I think I need ...
I think I need to buy a gun's picture

everything is fine in the united states stadium and concerts are packed, everyone has their new tv and has a new leased suv,,,,,,,carry on

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 21:29 | 3046254 The Alarmist
The Alarmist's picture

"The rest of the West, where banks continue to behave exactly as the did prior to the crisis, not so much."

Correction ... before the crisis, banks actually paid interest on deposits.  Now they have figured out two ways to get our money for free.

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 21:42 | 3046271 strannick
strannick's picture

Ragnarok the Reckoning, banks...

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 03:36 | 3046558 Supernova Born
Supernova Born's picture

It's what we got that they don't got that is the key.

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 08:07 | 3046622 TwoShortPlanks
TwoShortPlanks's picture

America is not Iceland.

I believe Americans lost their ability (perhaps even their will) to control their own country and destiny somewhere between the day Kennedy was shot, and that of his brother, along with MLK. So, since 1963 to 1968 it's been down hill ever since.

Those three killings effectively put to death, "land of the free, home of the brave" in every Americans' psyche. Because ever since then, every American has lived in fear of the American Government itself....BUT that fear has been actively projected outward (Vietnam, Cold War, Iraq, Afghanistan, War on Terror etc, and now it's the Debt Ceiling). Look at the US MSM, it's a furnace of fear, and they're used to direct that fear toward a predetermined target/focal point. Whatever it takes to prevent the public from realising that what they really fear, is their own fucking Government.

And now I can see that activity, that focal point, is being turned inward, against the American citizens. Soon they'll start identifying specific types of people to fear...like they did in Nazi Germany.

The Icelandic Government says something, and does it. The US Government says one thing, and does another. This is because the Icelandic Government fears it's public, the US Government does not.

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 08:13 | 3046633 negative rates
negative rates's picture

1937 was it for me, and the laws, politicians, and wall street, all went down hill from there to now.

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 11:01 | 3046777 thatthingcanfly
thatthingcanfly's picture

Nope. The year was 1861.

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 13:01 | 3046958 Woodyg
Woodyg's picture

Downhill from 1937? we were then entering the greatest middle-class growth period EVER!

I point to 1971 and Nixon ending the Bretton Woods - and then Opening China.

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 14:59 | 3047149 francis_the_won...
francis_the_wonder_hamster's picture

I'm torn between 1861 and 1913.  One saw the destruction of States rights and the other saw the destruction of money.  I'm pretty sure our grandchildren will be adding 2008 to that list.

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 19:15 | 3047455 Cathartes Aura
Cathartes Aura's picture

if you accept the notion that this corporate nationstate is a long term planned "event" then one needn't choose a date within the timeline,

but merely acknowledge the whole event.

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 02:15 | 3048029 economics9698
economics9698's picture

When the fiat dies form new countries.

1865, 1913, 1937, 1962, 1965, 2001, 2009.

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 09:24 | 3046671 7againstThebes
7againstThebes's picture

TwoShort Planks: great post. Right on the money. You absolutely nailed it.

The American Reublic was tattered but more or less was surviving until  the coup d'etat of Nov. 22, 1963, brought it to a close. 

It is amazing how effective the coup was.  You'd think that there would have been a pocket of resistance emerging from somewhere or other in our government, military or society.  But, alas, it seems that we American men have become cowards.  Yes, and this includes the military, where they are the worse form of cowards, i.e., the coward/bully(fawning with the strong and brutal with the weak), and the moral coward (lacking the balls to oppose the hierachy or jeopardize a career). 

I suppose it is going to come down to doors getting knocked on late and night, and we have to make a terrible calculation:  live like a slave or die like a man.

 

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 13:05 | 3046966 Woodyg
Woodyg's picture

They were quite good at killing any truly effective Leftwing leaders that weren't secret corporatists or bilderbergers.

Too bad theres not a law prohibiting any person from entering government with ANY connection to Kissenger or Brizinski

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 09:27 | 3046675 mvsjcl
mvsjcl's picture

Precisely. Iceland isn't large enough to provide refuge for criminals. It's essentially a community. No place for the bankers to hide. They are forced to live next door to the people they're screwing. Easy enough to find them and root them out. Likewise for the law makers. No gated enclaves with bought cops for protection.

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 10:08 | 3046701 Stuck on Zero
Stuck on Zero's picture

Iceland: People control the government.  Government controls the banks.

USSA: Banks control the government.  Government controls the people.

 

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 12:29 | 3046902 cranky-old-geezer
cranky-old-geezer's picture

 

 

This is because the Icelandic Government fears it's public, the US Government does not.

I don't think Iceland's govt fears the people, I think they just have some principles, like punish troublemakers, not reward them.

Iceland's govt isn't trying to loot the nation like our govt is.  That might be the biggest difference.

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 14:03 | 3047049 rwe2late
rwe2late's picture

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Geezer

For once try doing some factual research before you otherwise opine based on nothing but your old misbegotten prejudices.

The bailouts were NOT rejected because Iceland’s politicians have “some principles“.

The politicians made repeated efforts to comply with the bankster demands

and had to be repeatedly STOPPED by citizen outrage and opposition.

 

 

 

http://www.globalresearch.ca/the-protest-movement-financial-fraud-in-iceland/21308   

 

 

 

http://www.globalresearch.ca/video-no-bailouts-in-iceland/18023   

 

 

 

http://www.globalresearch.ca/why-iceland-voted-no-to-the-diktats-of-the-creditor-banks/24262  

?

 

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 18:44 | 3047419 cranky-old-geezer
cranky-old-geezer's picture

 

 

I stand corrected, but I have a difficult time believing any govt feels the least bit beholden to the people these days.  Color me cynical.

And if pols wanted to give bankers what they want, it'll happen sooner or later, people be damned.

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 11:48 | 3048621 Kobe Beef
Kobe Beef's picture

But it didn't happen in this case. The people won. At least, for now, I think. And that's why it's important to study Iceland.

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 21:42 | 3046278 williambanzai7
williambanzai7's picture

Mojo in the Moho

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 00:49 | 3046476 Freddie
Freddie's picture

College ball with 100,000 screaming idiots and full TV brainwashing.   The kids in colleges sold into debt slavery with no jobs thatks to dear marxist mullah.   These dumb kids cheer for Whatever State University where the tenured marxist profs making $200,000 a year insure these kids are debt slaves for life.  They are cheering the institution that will make them debt serfs.

The other kids in uniform get to die because our mullah said they cannot fire back because it might offend Allah.

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 10:59 | 3046774 GMadScientist
GMadScientist's picture

If they were going to Whatever State, they wouldn't be racking up the debt...my Stafford Loan was paid off before I graduated.

And the professors at Whatever State are driving Toyota Corollas; you're thinking of lobbyists or maybe your boy Rushbo.

UE without degree: 9.4

UE with degree: 4.9

The other kids in uniform might have been better served by paying attention in class than by being patriotic to a traitorous regime who would send them to die for the sake of their private profits.

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 12:06 | 3046843 Freddie
Freddie's picture

Who is Rushbo? You mean Limbaugh who fawns over Apple, the NFL and the Steelers?  The Limbaugh who was denied the chance to buy into an NFL (monopoly) team which was bought by a shady pal of obama?   The arse still sucks up to the NFl like a dummy.

Limbaugh the idiot who denied the 2012 election was rigged and was a total set up?   He is another dumb puppet serf like you.   He makes a bit more money being a stooge than most.   No - I realize the whole TV, media and Hollywood support The Matrix.  My guess is you are one of the sheep who watch their crap too.

Oh and the kids in uniform should have paid better attention in school?  So they could go to college and become debt serfs?  Graduate with no prospects for a job?

When did you pay off your Stafford loan?  The costs today for these kids is almost impossible to have a job and go to school.  It was possible about 20 years ago.  Go back to sleep sheep.

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 22:01 | 3047653 TruthHunter
TruthHunter's picture

dear marxist mullah. ?

Wasn't it Bush and cronies that shielded student loans from bankruptcy?  So what

did our dear marxist mullah have to do with the student loan debacle? 

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 21:44 | 3046268 philipat
philipat's picture

Sweden is another useful comparison. It must be something to do with the climate in these far Northern European States that allows them to think clearly and maintin a degree of integrity.

The US chose to follow the Japan model. With similar results in view of the fact that things never are different this time. The only "Sanctions" in the US have been against the Banks themselves, which are therefore (Unreasonably) paid by the Shareholders. There haven't even been any Civil actions against Banksters, which would at least hit them in their beloved Cayman accounts. What a complete joke.

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 04:06 | 3046563 ThirdWorldDude
ThirdWorldDude's picture

Are you saying it with a straight face?

There's only 1 word that explains Sweden - parabolic!

Rationale here, latest update here...


Sun, 12/09/2012 - 22:02 | 3047629 philipat
philipat's picture

"Are you saying it with a straight face?"

Yes, I am. Sweden temporarily Nationalised its Banks. The Managements were fired and the Shareholders and Bondholders were wiped out. Depositors were protected. The Banks were later re-privatized and the taxpayer made money in the process. The Banks are PRIVATE so if they fuck things up allover again, that is no fault of an earlier pragmatic Central Government policy but yet more Bankster ineptitude  If they fail again because of Bankster greed and stupidity, so be it. The US approach of "Screw everyone but the Banksters" makes no sense to anyone other than the Banksters.

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 11:54 | 3048640 Kobe Beef
Kobe Beef's picture

Couldn't just one motivated, patriotic, Special Ops Unit extract the Banksters and waterboard them until the attorneys arrive? Why not a little rendition? Diego Garcia's nice this time of year. C'mon Colonels, we know you're out there.

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 08:12 | 3046632 dolly madison
dolly madison's picture

There haven't even been any Civil actions against Banksters, which would at least hit them in their beloved Cayman accounts. What a complete joke.

Yeah, I'm getting really fed up with the limiting of liability.

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 09:33 | 3046677 Muddy1
Muddy1's picture

All together now: Jon Corzine and MF Global

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 09:41 | 3046686 brettd
brettd's picture

Countrywide.

Chris Dodd....

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 11:02 | 3046779 GMadScientist
GMadScientist's picture

Bank of Lynching America CountryWide.

Mozillo, Thane, Greenberg,...

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 21:32 | 3047623 philipat
philipat's picture

"Yeah, I'm getting really fed up with the limiting of liability".

Actually, "Limited Liability" does not applly in the case of fraud or any other criminal activity. And civil suits can be brought against anyone BY anyone.

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 09:13 | 3048244 Lebensphilosoph
Lebensphilosoph's picture

It's called race, not climate.

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 08:50 | 3046652 JohnnyBriefcase
JohnnyBriefcase's picture

Yeah, but where do they stand on gay marriage and abortion?

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 11:03 | 3046781 GMadScientist
GMadScientist's picture

Usually the neck.

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 13:45 | 3047024 disabledvet
disabledvet's picture

actually the article doesn't make sense at all...though the policy response does. this is a Bankster paradise...having all debt denominated in the local currency, have it devalued to nearly nothing then have all your debts be forced to repaid in a "hard currency." (British Pounds, euro's...maybe even dollars who knows.) the households still have the debt...they still have to scrimp and save and work and live...just in a devalued world. I wouldn't call this response "unorthodox" but in fact "text book on how to deal with a property bubble." namely, devalue, destroy, inflate. this is obviously what Ireland, Portugal, Greece and Spain SHOULD be doing...and the fact that they are not, have not...will not be allowed to?...is having dramatic consequences on the Continent. The USA is the "off the wall" case actually. i have argued the USA model is the "nothing succeeds like excess" approach. And this is as it relates to bailouts, credit writedowns, massive increases in Government entitlement programs, a further expansion of the war...was there a downsizing i missed here? "there wasn't a downsizing but a super-sizing"? as if MF Global "will now pay for everything." the USA's approach so far appears to be one where creditors don't even exist...let alone do not matter. Amazingly so far it has succeeded as "the dollar has remained at albeit low levels, interest rates have plunged, the economic recovery barely has a pulse...but it does have one" etc, etc, etc. Obviously "long everything" continues to work...and as long as you don't try to explain it then "everything is just fine." there is a point however where that devalued dollar turns into Hitler. The irony that it is cash itself that is in such short supply should be lost on no one. "And now the Government is stepping up activities to see what's going on there": http://www.dechert.com/US_SEC_Chairman_Schapiro_Announces_SEC_Will_Not_V...
this was a critical component of the "Epic Fail" of 2008...namely overnight rates for just plain old cash went through the roof. where are these rates now? what have we done to create the conditions whereby such an event cannot happen in the near term again? haven't we in fact done the exact opposite of solving the problem and in fact are recreating the crisis of 2008? it sure seems that way to me...save for the fact of a barely registering cyclical recovery. in many ways (relative to the deficit and debt for example) you could argue our current situation is far worse...especially given the a massive new set of tax increases to go along with the biggest unfunded entitlement in US history. (Social Security and Medicare would fully funded in my view.) And lest we forget we are at war. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Guns_versus_butter_model

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 21:17 | 3046232 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

I would not call a "volcanic Island" of 300k people a resounding economic success/ What is your turn around on (GDP)?  Same as it ever was/ Fishing the North Atlantic, with some small oil fields!

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 21:32 | 3046257 The Alarmist
The Alarmist's picture

You forgot threatening to lease air,naval, and intelligence collection facilities to rival wannabe superpowers and using that to extort contributions from a Hyperpower. That's gotta be good for a few billion a year.

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 21:41 | 3046275 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

Polar routes for surveilance/ Yes that makes sense/

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 22:22 | 3046318 willwork4food
willwork4food's picture

If a macho H.S. bully promised his drug man the money he extorted from all the 98lb weenie's lunches he collected for protection then blew it all on a weekend hooker, would it be right for the drug man to have the right to come and continue to shake down the kids?

YC,   the concept is honor and form and therefore the size of the monetary value is irrelevant.

The fuckers here in the US that are FUCKING PAID TO SERVE US screwed us and should hang for high treason. Got rope? I wanna be first.

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 22:32 | 3046332 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

 It's not about $. $ are the by-product of  good ideas, with a good team of people.

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 22:56 | 3046352 willwork4food
willwork4food's picture

Yes it is about the $. If the IRS wants to steal $ from me and my business to fund the hypocrital US-Israel Government and pay illegals for their child care without my consent then I can have a great team of people with good ideas I have to get rid of because I was robbed and can't pay them because they have more guns than I have.

Usually I agree with your posts, perhaps I am missing your point.

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 23:07 | 3046364 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

  Lay off the Northern Lights Iceland. We are your friends. We come in peace/

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 11:04 | 3046785 GMadScientist
GMadScientist's picture

A little bit goes a long way.

Just remember (if you can), when you're already at the North Pole, you don't get any more North...

http://www.secretsofahomegrower.com/NorthernLights.jpg

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 23:16 | 3046368 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

What the heck does Child support and the Middle east have to do with Iceland?

  I see credit ratings/ I see business ratings/   I see people voting for socialized government services?

  What am I missing? 

Gross Domestic Product, Iceland
Sat, 12/08/2012 - 23:35 | 3046398 willwork4food
willwork4food's picture

What does Child support and the ME got to do with Iceland?

 

Ahh, let's see..yea, got it: Everything?

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 05:43 | 3046585 Supernova Born
Supernova Born's picture

fuggit

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 09:38 | 3046681 CPL
CPL's picture

Exactly.

 

Iceland does not have anymore "wealth" than it did when it nationalised their banks and stopped the slide into the gutter.  All they did was postpone the inevidable of fractional reserve banking's implosion.  

So enough of the backclapping, Industry stands at zero from the socialist volcano island.  There have been discussions in the past to evacuate the whole place because of the geological possiblity of the island growing a bit bigger.  Not economically, from lava flow.  BUT if all of you wish to throw money at oil wells that wouldn't provide a city of 50000 with energy for the day and pickled herring, that's great.  But understand that this article is as much an advertisement as it is a showcase.

 

Keep things in perspective.

There are towns in Oregon of 50000 that have more robust industry, manufacturing, energy, farming, logging, minerals and trades people than Iceland does.  Plus they grow great weed and there are some mighty fine brew masters plying their trade.

 

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 15:12 | 3047169 francis_the_won...
francis_the_wonder_hamster's picture

The diving in Iceland is epic.  Just saying....

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 21:18 | 3046233 ultraticum
ultraticum's picture

If the banksters are imprisioned the people don't even need bailouts.  But, sadly, in Amerika 99% of the populace - and especially the gooberment - is too ignorant to have any inkling of their own serfdom.

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 23:34 | 3046394 HoaX
HoaX's picture

The Icesave clients sure did need bailouts. The Dutch and British goverment took up that tab.

Not that I disagree with jailing the banksters responsible by the way ;)

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 21:22 | 3046240 grunk
grunk's picture

Iceland is obviously governed by terrorists.

I bet Iceland has chemical weapons.

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 22:11 | 3046301 upWising
upWising's picture

You know damn well they have WMDs and Chemistry Weapons.  You know they is turrurrists because they don't speak English, don't go to Church, they have EXTRA LETTERS in their alphabet that they use to cover up secret messages, and they don't have TREES.  I think them little Iceland Ponies is really CAMELS in disguise.  Them Icelander girls cover up themselfs up head-to-foot like Moooslums and makes escuses for doing it, saying "it's cold."  I think we need to round up all the Icelander Illegal Immigrants (the "I I I s") and ship them back to where they come from before they does us harm.

I hope Fox News starts covering this country that I know just hates Amercia.  Iceland is closer to New York than Las Vegas so we got to be vigilent!  I hope hope Hiltlery and the heritage Foundation people starts a Free Icelander Army to liberate them from there chains.   ICELAND is not NICELAND!!!

"Amercia is Jesus' Favorite Country ©"
"Jesus Watches Fox News ©" 

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 22:24 | 3046320 willwork4food
willwork4food's picture

PRAISE THE LOWD WE HAVE GOOD GOD-FEARIN' CHRISTIAN MEN HERE TODAY!!!

You betcha, we got to get over there and kick those commie's butts all the way to the cross!! And ifa they dont want to go there we blow their shit away!!

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 00:53 | 3046478 Freddie
Freddie's picture

The Fox swipe means you are a moron who actually watches TV like a good little serf.  All the networks, all of TV and all of Hollywood are shit you doofus serf.

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 14:37 | 3047099 TheFourthStooge-ing
TheFourthStooge-ing's picture

Yeah, Freddie, and you're enthralled by the media matrix as well, because the talk radio crackpots you get your news from are as much a part of it as anyone.

It's pretty funny how they got rubes like you to campaign for Obama. Just get all the "true believers" to rant like meth-addicted refugees from the set of Deliverance about Obama the Secret Moozlim® and it's guaranteed to push some of the undecideds into the Obama camp.

Be proud, Freddie, of your role in getting the president reelected. Considering his unpopularity, that's quite an accomplishment. Oh, and thanks for what you did for Santorum. The high kook factor among his supporters helped clear the path for Romney.

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 12:42 | 3046923 Big Corked Boots
Big Corked Boots's picture

 Say what you want about those icy cold terrists. We wont be bombing them. They are white.

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 20:12 | 3047545 Dr. Sandi
Dr. Sandi's picture

Tell that to the former residents of Dresden.

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 22:30 | 3046330 kliguy38
kliguy38's picture

OH yeh! They've got WMDs (Women Majestically Developed) ...I'll volunteer to go in on the "first wave" of the invasion

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 23:13 | 3046369 cognus
cognus's picture

you are a GIANT among elves...

I propose drone wedding parties and funerals first, call a UN conference on the plight of the rebels in Iceland, rollout twitt images of dead children and blame it on the people that engineered the turnaround, call for a UN resolution to force surprise inspections of their chemical plants [nevermind that they don't have any... unimportant to the narrative], have a few of our Al Queda friends blow up cars and bars, blame the government, demand resignations....  then through backchannel offer them generous loan packages with automatic rollover provisions

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 21:24 | 3046243 Waydown
Waydown's picture

Iceland is Viking, ex-Danish, Viking, here we go again

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 21:23 | 3046244 dick cheneys ghost
dick cheneys ghost's picture

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=7zlzC_XMQzI

 

Great interview with the President of Iceland!!

 

btw, Fuck yu WaLL StrEEt

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 21:31 | 3046250 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

Long Arctic rights and Atlantic cod/  Good luck Dick! We have already explored the cost basis/

 It's not worth it. A massive solar flare might make it worthwhile to drill! 

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 21:29 | 3046252 Waydown
Waydown's picture

To do what the Icelanders have done you need, first of all, one good pair, which is what I doubt are still left in the US

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 21:49 | 3046266 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

I'm certified diver, never in Iceland "airtight/dry suit" diving/ I have seen pictures of that untouched magma under water/ Giant grey cliffs for 1-200 meters drop off into oblivion.  Not much aquatic life/ No thanks...

Great Barrier Reef, is much better.

 

 

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 22:10 | 3046305 Cabreado
Cabreado's picture

You seem to be missing the point.

Good on you for being a certified diver.

I'm not one.

But I have visited Iceland...
and they don't give a shit about you, your diving, or even that you miss the point.

They have their act together... as close as can be... collectively.

Will the "Collective We" march on down the drain, or will the Collective We put our self-absorption aside,

and finally get the point?

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 22:58 | 3046313 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

 Ok, I jumped on your boat. You know as well as I know what Iceland is, and it's strategic importance/

 It's not common for someone to book a trip to Iceland. for a vacation/

  Although, Icelandic girls can be stubborn<

 Take a break Cabrearo/ You are out of control!

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 23:00 | 3046356 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

  You are just looking for conflict/  no humor Cabreado( Just a bull protecting his Cows!)

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 02:16 | 3046527 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

 You seem to be missing the point " Cabreado" I could give 2 shits

  Go live in Ice Hole for all I care/ Fuck you very much!

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 05:00 | 3046575 MrButtoMcFarty
MrButtoMcFarty's picture

Will someone lock the drunk bitch in the basement please!

 

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 16:07 | 3047237 Cathartes Aura
Cathartes Aura's picture

.

But I have visited Iceland...
and they don't give a shit about you, your diving, or even that you miss the point.

They have their act together... as close as can be... collectively.

which is the main point that always goes whooooossshh over the heads here - Iceland has less than half a million people sharing limited, beautiful space, with a long history that ties them together.  they're educated, community oriented - this means they can police themselves, and it's much harder for the sociopath narcissist gene to multiply and overtake the social fabric.

amrka can never be like this, never was in the first place.  from the very beginning of tales told, it's been justification of theft and death, via "God sez so" stories, and that my friends, is exactly how sociopathy thrives.

add in a little controlled media to stir the anger and dumb down the populace with sporting events, porn, and fudtm guaranteed to rot you from the inside out, voila!

tailor made bitchez.

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 15:18 | 3047175 francis_the_won...
francis_the_wonder_hamster's picture

Plenty of aquatic life in Iceland.  I'm planning a diving trip there next summer.

(go to Youtube and search for "Diving in Iceland" for some amazing videos).

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 19:57 | 3047525 11b40
11b40's picture

I thought he meant muff diving was espedcially good in Iceland.

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 21:33 | 3046259 e_goldstein
e_goldstein's picture

Way off topic, but wtf is wrong with the new snorgtees girl's breasts?

She either has 3 like in total recall, or just one big one in the middle.

 

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 21:53 | 3046285 WesternFront
WesternFront's picture

You and your misdireckshuns E-man.  Oceania is not impresdt.  (Yes, my Newspeak is lacking)

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 22:26 | 3046323 WmMcK
WmMcK's picture

You mean that figuratively, of course.

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 23:15 | 3046373 Seize Mars
Seize Mars's picture

You mean the one that says "I used to care but they have a pill for that now"?

Bang tidy, that

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 00:35 | 3046462 e_goldstein
e_goldstein's picture

No, not her. There is a new blonde girl with a red t-shirt.

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 16:24 | 3047259 Seize Mars
Seize Mars's picture

yeah, the jury is out. I'd hit it, but I don't want to meet her parents pr anything.

Tue, 12/11/2012 - 00:24 | 3051004 Seize Mars
Seize Mars's picture

After careful analysis, I would say she has an ill-fitting brassiere. That, and I don't like the pencilled eyebrows. But other than those complaints, I'm in.

 

Thu, 12/13/2012 - 09:07 | 3058801 Seize Mars
Seize Mars's picture

Wait a minute. She's knock-kneed.

Fuck it, I'm out.

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 21:34 | 3046261 Waterfallsparkles
Waterfallsparkles's picture

That is why the reduction in the Debt needs to fall squarely on the Banks.  It was all of the Money created to Bail them out that caused the explosion of the Debt in the US.

Tax them to pay back what was given to them from the creation of so much Debt.  Not taking away a Contributory benefit like Social Security.

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 13:01 | 3046956 cranky-old-geezer
cranky-old-geezer's picture

 

 

That is why the reduction in the Debt needs to fall squarely on the Banks.

Interesting idea, put writedowns on those with the least skin in the game, banks, they created money out of thin air, no investment of time, labor, resources, anything.

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 21:36 | 3046262 Billy Shears
Billy Shears's picture

I don't usually buy bottled water but when I do I always make sure it is a product of Iceland...the girls are cute too.

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 21:36 | 3046265 HoaX
HoaX's picture

Iceland is quite eager to join the EU by the way. The UK is eager to leave.

I know who I´ll be shorting and it´s not gonna be the Euro.

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 21:39 | 3046270 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

Iceland is torn, they want to see how CAD performs over the next 3 years. Iceland is inclined to join Canada and her commodity currency.

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 22:33 | 3046328 HoaX
HoaX's picture

Iceland is part of the EEA and the Schengen area. They are part of the European Erasmus program (education). It´s also part of the Dublin convention on justice and home affairs.

17 June 2010, the EU granted official candidate status to Iceland by formally approving the opening of membership talks, this was AFTER the Icesave scandal in January 2010.

The screen process ended and formal negotiations began on 27 June 2011. Four chapters were opened: science and research; education and culture; public procurement; information society and media. The first two were immediately closed, a first in accession history. Iceland aimed to open half of the remaining chapters under the Polish presidency (the second half of 2011) and the other half under the following Danish presidency (first half of 2012).

2012-05-24: Proposal for a national referendum on discontinuing accession talks with the European Union rejected with 34 votes against and 25 in favor. 

Get your facts straight, they are firmly into the application process, and well after the Icesave debacle and subsequent overthrow of their government. A country like Iceland which is taken as an example here at least knows where its prosperity lies, and it is not with Canada, the US or the UK. It is firmly within the European framework.


Sat, 12/08/2012 - 22:47 | 3046339 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

Help me/ Please?  Endowments and Grants funded by "whom"? Your pal that loves junking me can surely answer that question?

   Casinoes/Power Ball Iceland?

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 23:06 | 3046362 HoaX
HoaX's picture

Endowments and Grants funded by the European Union. And the same pall that is junking you is your pall junking me.

For the rest I refer you to my post further down.

p.s. Pretty pathetic you can only speak in populist rhetoric instead of coming with anything substantial.

 

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 23:37 | 3046401 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

Note taken; hoax

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 00:04 | 3046431 HoaX
HoaX's picture

Nice name innit? Jelly?

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 00:48 | 3046475 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

Isn't it? 

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 19:36 | 3047492 smiler03
smiler03's picture

This article is more up-to-date than yours on EU accession feeling in Iceland (July 2012)

 

""As we get results from more primaries and the forming of lists of candidates EU membership for Iceland becomes more distant. If it would have been hard to get it through the current parliament it will be almost impossible at the next one."


Vast majority of Icelanders oppose EU membership and have according to every opinion poll published in Iceland for more than three years. The majority also does not want to adopt the euro and wants the EU application withdrwan."

http://eunews.blogspot.co.uk/

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 09:44 | 3048292 HoaX
HoaX's picture

Well, I stand corrected I guess.

Although I hope you do not mind me taking anything that comes from Britain when it pertains to the EU with a pinch of salt ;)

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 22:55 | 3046348 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

 I'll bet Iceland is really perplexed after "Carney left the BoC"?  Monkey Wrenches/

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 14:43 | 3047114 TheFourthStooge-ing
TheFourthStooge-ing's picture

Carney was never in Blue Oyster Cult, not even on cowbell.

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 01:12 | 3046483 CunnyFunt
CunnyFunt's picture

My ex's new/old man was comfortably equipped in Iceland with a grant for his research on artificial intelligence. Unfortunately for him, his grant wasn't renewed and he had to fuck off. From all accounts, Icelanders don't want non-Icelanders fucking with their gig.

Otherwise, Aziz should find some original content.

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 02:05 | 3046525 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

Thanks C/F. You are a Gentleman and Scholar. I thought I had reason to be pissed/ Buggar/Fuck off Icelanders!

  Cunny is right about the gig AZIZ! Quit playing with lost cultures on volcanic rocks!

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 21:41 | 3046274 collon88
collon88's picture

If GS is doing God's work then Iceland is doing Satan's work and must be stopped! 

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 21:44 | 3046279 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

 Drill away people/ See ya on Discovery Something...  Exploit the Icelanders, that probably are content, with their Ocean Bounty/

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 21:55 | 3046287 reader2010
reader2010's picture

I said right here on ZH back in 2009 the difference is that Iceland has democracy and  of course I got laughed at.

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 04:22 | 3046567 ThirdWorldDude
ThirdWorldDude's picture

You're spot on as usual, Icelandic democracy is over a millenium old.

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 22:03 | 3046291 mc_LDN
mc_LDN's picture

The difference is in Europe and the US the Banksters are clever. They captured the political class decades ago and started re-writing the rules to suit themselves. Pretty diifficult to prosecute banksters when half of them sit in parliaments and senates.

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 22:29 | 3046327 willwork4food
willwork4food's picture

Yup. And collect massive salaries and benefits from...us.

This will not end well.

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 09:21 | 3046668 Acet
Acet's picture

They captured the political class in Iceland too.

The difference is that over there the people threw the politicians out (and, at least the Prime Minister was criminally charged, though that has come to nothing yet). All the mainstream parties that were in the pocket of the bankers were trashed, to the point that the Mayor of Reykjavik is a comedian who started a party and spent his campaign making fun of traditional parties (and apparently he's a pretty good Mayor).

With an well educated population and a real (i.e. Proportional Vote) democratic voting system, Democracy does work.

Which is why at least the UK, the US and most of Europe are going to continue down the route of economic and social stagnation and decay (if they're lucky), economic collapse and/or revolution, war and dictatorship.

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 22:02 | 3046292 Being Free
Being Free's picture

So the Pols throw the banksters under the bus and give out free get out of debt cards to those who indulged while those who did not just bend over.  The pols survive and look like heroes??

Iceland is no example of social justice.

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 22:10 | 3046303 Clowns on Acid
Clowns on Acid's picture

Yeh but Iceland is such a diverse country.....

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 10:28 | 3046729 Optimusprime
Optimusprime's picture

Diversity is weakness.  Once that sinks in, the world makes a lot more sense.

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 16:18 | 3047252 Cathartes Aura
Cathartes Aura's picture

huge populations pitted against each other by me-duh is weakness.

but just like huge feedlots, it's hella profitable, and that's the bottom line here. . .

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 22:15 | 3046309 praxis
praxis's picture

Valhalla I am coming

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 23:39 | 3046407 willwork4food
willwork4food's picture

Nova: American Apocalypse

We love you Steve & Tanya!

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 22:17 | 3046312 JR
JR's picture

 “Activities such as fraud, embezzlement, or counterfeiting should not be ‘privatized’; they should be abolished.” This Rothbardian solution to America’s banking crisis parallels that of Iceland’s success story that “went after the people who caused the crisis."

Says Austrian Economist Murray Rothbard, “the Fed, which had promised to redeem its liabilities in gold, has been in default of that promise since Roosevelt's repudiation of the gold standard in 1933. The Federal Reserve System, being in default, should be liquidated, and the way to liquidate it is the way any insolvent business firm is liquidated: its assets are parceled out, pro rata, to its creditors.”

Rothbard, explaining how “two great desiderata – the return of the gold standard, and the abolition of the Federal Reserve – could both be accomplished at one stroke,” states: “The important point, it must be emphasized, is that at the very first sign of a bank's failing to redeem its notes or deposits on demand, the police and courts must put them out of business. Instant justice, period, with no mercy and no bailouts.

“Under such a regime, it should not take long for the banks to go under, or else to contract their notes and deposits until they are down to 100 percent banking. Such monetary deflation, while leading to various adjustments, would be clearly one-shot, and would obviously have to stop permanently when the total of bank liabilities contracted down to 100 percent of gold assets. One crucial difference between inflation and deflation, is that inflation can escalate up to an infinity of money supply and prices, whereas the money supply can only deflate as far as the total amount of standard money, under the gold standard the supply of gold money. Gold constitutes an absolute floor against further deflation.”

In an article published in 1995 in The Freeman just shortly after to his death, Rothbard stated: “If this proposal seems harsh on the banks, we have to realize that the banking system is headed for a mighty crash in any case. As a result of the S&L collapse, the terribly shaky nature of our banking system is at last being realized. People are openly talking of the FDIC being insolvent, and of the entire banking structure crashing to the ground. And if the people ever get to realize this in their bones, they will precipitate a mighty "bank run" by trying to get their money out of the banks and into their own pockets. And the banks would then come tumbling down, because the people's money isn't there. The only thing that could save the banks in such a mighty bank run is if the Federal Reserve prints the $1.6 trillion in cash and gives it to the banks – igniting an immediate and devastating runaway inflation and destruction of the dollar.

“Liberals are fond of blaming our economic crisis on the ‘greed of the 1980s.’ And yet ‘greed’ was no more intense in the 1980s than it was in the 1970s or previous decades or than it will be in the future. What happened in the 1980s was a virulent episode of government deficits and of Federal Reserve-inspired credit expansion by the banks. As the Fed purchased assets and pumped in reserves to the banking system, the banks happily multiplied bank credit and created new money on top of those reserves.

“There has been a lot of focus on poor quality bank loans: on loans to bankrupt Third World countries or to bloated and, in retrospect, unsound real estate schemes and shopping malls in the middle of nowhere. But poor quality loans and investments are always the consequence of central bank and bank-credit expansion. The all-too-familiar cycle of boom and bust, euphoria and crash, prosperity and depression, did not begin in the 1980s. Nor is it a creature of civilization or the market economy. The boom-bust cycle began in the eighteenth century with the beginnings of central banking, and has spread and intensified ever since, as central banking spread and took control of the economic systems of the Western world. Only the abolition of the Federal Reserve System and a return to the gold standard can put an end to cyclical booms and busts, and finally eliminate chronic and accelerating inflation. “

http://www.lewrockwell.com/rothbard/rothbard200.html

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 23:20 | 3046357 HoaX
HoaX's picture

I kind of like Iceland and the way they told the banksters to shove it where the sun don´t shine, I love it even more they, like Sweden, decided to prosecute the bankers responsible for this mess. Should happen more!

That being said, it is important not to forget one thing. Iceland was living the good life during the boom years and none of the citizens claimed when the easy money was flowing in.

Then when it turned out to be a massive scam they basically shafted naive Dutch and English savers who were lured in by Icesaves sleek advertising campaigns (John Cleese was one of their main stars).

I can only speak for the dutch goverment in this case. They had to bail out Dutch savers to the tune of 100k Euros per account, not the bank, just ordinary people who were lured by somewhat higher interest rates (greed I guess) and the professional look of Icesave as a company. Icelanders in the mean time where living large during those days, driving big cars and having a massive property boom. Then when it all went bust they basically just reneged on all their agreements.

I like this story but it smacks of hypocrisy in that respect.

 

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 23:39 | 3046405 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

I'm here/ ;-)

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 00:58 | 3046486 andrewp111
andrewp111's picture

I'm sorry, but anyone who put their savings into a  foreign bank that promised above market interest rates deserves to lose his money.  Those depositors should not have been bailed out by their home governments.

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 10:09 | 3046703 Oldwood
Oldwood's picture

So people are dumbasses if they invest in foreign banks but they should be bailed out if they paid and borrowed too much on their houses. Populist bunk! Bad/stupid behaviour must have costs or it will continue and likely double down. How can you have a sustainable system if those who do the right thing, (save) end up losing, and those who are living large, buying everything they want, get bailed out?

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 23:03 | 3046359 Jack Burton
Jack Burton's picture

If Iceland had followed the Irish model, the Icelanders would be wholly owned slaves to the banking class. The crimes of the banking elite have been visited upon the Irish taxpayers, while banker live the high life.

At least in Sweden, in their previous banker caused collapse, the government took over and sacked the bankers from their highly paid jobs and replaced them with new management and then let the banks go private again. In Iceland the crimes of the bankers were orders of magnitude worse than the Swedish disaster. Had Icelandic taxpayers been made responsible for the banks obligations, then 5 generations of Icelanders well past the end of the 21st century would have been slaves to pay off bankers losses. Iceland did the right thing, it was not easy, nor painless.

If they do go into the EU, as they seem to want to, I believe they are joining a sinking ship. They can still trade with Europe, why take on the Euro. The benefits may be just to the financial sector.

I remember Iceland in 2005 and 2006. I was there during the peak boom. The Icelanders were drunk on the new model of finance capitalism. Many dropped jobs in the real economy and joined the banks at enormous salaries. They soon lost these jobs. Many of them believed the new world had changed Iceland for ever, now they are relearning how to run a real economy. Good for them!

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 23:30 | 3046374 HoaX
HoaX's picture

"I remember Iceland in 2005 and 2006. I was there during the peak boom. The Icelanders were drunk on the new model of finance capitalism. Many dropped jobs in the real economy and joined the banks at enormous salaries"

This exactly, the icelanders were driving massive cars and had a huge property boom during the heyday of their banking industry. I´m not at all disagreeing with it unwinding but I do find it utterly hypocrite they basically made Dutch and British taxpayers pick up the tab for their large living.

One great thing they did though, and that pretty much pays for most of their wrongs, is, like Sweden, prosecute and jail the banksters responsible, not bail them out like the rest of the Western World has (and yes, that includes Europe and my country the Netherlands)

That being said I can completely understand them wanting to join the EU. Because unlike being portrayed in the Murdoch controlled media, the European Union is NOT about protecting the financial services sector but about much more. Like Employer protection, education, cultural and agricultural investments etc. Also, the fact Britain (and mainstream US media) are so vehemently anti-EU at the moment is because the European Union actually wants to impose much needed regulation which would harm their infinite leverage, zero-rules financial services sector which by default would harm their so revered London City where you can create money out of nothing and then some.

I know I´ll come over as a so-called Europhile but I don´t care, the fact I grew up in it meant for me that a) I could study not just at Dutch Universities but take a masters in Berlin, while german students did the same at my university. b) It allowed me to start my own bussiness in the South of Europe, without having to apply for a green card or anything. c) It ensured that if my national goverment didnt respect consumer or democratic rights I had the European Courts to turn to for justice, like many have.

Populism and EUSSR rhetoric is so easy, and mainly comes from either the UK or US who as pointed out over and over on this site, have a much larger debt problem than any other European country, thanks to their great, unregulated financial services sector.

 

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 23:41 | 3046406 OutLookingIn
OutLookingIn's picture

Sorry. No can do. Can't have it two ways at the same time.

Claiming an harmonious whole culturally, then in the same breath claiming low debt on a nationality basis, just doesn't cut it. If you count debt - then count debt as a whole. You will find that the EU as a whole has much more debt then any other region on this planet!

The EC was a great idea until they politisized the idea and called into being the EU.

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 17:20 | 3046410 HoaX
HoaX's picture

Sure, lets take the entire EU GDP into account as well then though. Because we want to be fair don´t we?

And don´t worry, I wont have you look it up:

European GDP for 2011 (latest stats since 2012 hasnt been calculated yet):

12,629,458 (in millions)

Combined European debt:

€10,320,106 (in millions) 

Thus a debt to GDP ratio of 82.2% (this includes all Euro countries, so Britain is included in these numbers)

It is way above what you should feel comfortable with I agree completely, but in comparison to the US? It´s over 100% and rising rapidly. No austerity for you guys!

United Kingdom is 86.6% btw, and that is not counting debts held by the financial services industry. As has been pointed out on this site as far back as 2010, if you would take that into account the UK would have well over 1000% debt to GDP.

So how it that CRTL-P button working for you guys?

 

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 19:40 | 3047499 smiler03
smiler03's picture

The Icelandics DON'T want to join the EU. Some policticians favout it but popular opinion is against it and jioning the EU will not happen.

 

"As we get results from more primaries and the forming of lists of candidates EU membership for Iceland becomes more distant. If it would have been hard to get it through the current parliament it will be almost impossible at the next one."

Vast majority of Icelanders oppose EU membership and have according to every opinion poll published in Iceland for more than three years. The majority also does not want to adopt the euro and wants the EU application withdrwan."

 

"http://eunews.blogspot.co.uk/"

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 23:52 | 3046418 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

 Nationality Basis? That's (A) new one?  Ok Mr. Government of (gumby land)... How should we appropriate civil collection?

  That "Robin Hood" tarriff? I'm all ears?  must fund Iceland huts?

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 09:43 | 3046682 Acet
Acet's picture

This!

People that don't speak any languages other than English, who never lived anywhere in Europe except maybe the UK and don't actually read any non-English media seem to have a lot of trouble viewing the EU with an unbiased look, probably the result of only having access to media which is biased and propagandist in nature.

Being Portuguese and having lived in Holland and now England, I'm often shocked at how little most of those shouting out loudly against the EU here actually know about it and how often the local (British) magnate owned press just makes up outright lies about the EU (my favorite is the one about the EU regulating the curvature of bananas).

My impression is that the average Brit (and seemingly, the average American) are in fact very unsophisticated and ignorant about the world while believeing that they know about it 'cause they read/watch the world news on UK/US newspapers/TV.

From my side I can tell you that the EU was the best thing that happened to Portugal, having brought in decent consumer protection, better laws, helped build-up the country's infrastructure, tempered the local politician's tendency for corruption and even avoided one or two local attempts at undoing the transition from Fascism to Democracy. In the UK, I can see that more often that not, consumer and human rights are better defended thanks to EU legislation than they would if left only to the locals (the UK is a very punitive country - though the wealthy get a free pass - and has the highest prision population per-capita in Europe).

The EURO is the problem, not the EU.

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 10:21 | 3046717 Oldwood
Oldwood's picture

As government's grow they become less accountable to their people. A large centralized govenment is to be feared, whether in Europe, America or anyplace else on earth. Enjoy your freedoms while they last. You can only hope that your educational system indoctrinates it's citizens to love it's brave new world at a rate equal to it's demise.

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 10:38 | 3046741 Acet
Acet's picture

You assume the EU is a government: wrong - it's still a supranational association of countries: it has no power to impose any real laws anywhere in Europe.

You assume that I grew up under pro-EU indoctrination: wrong - I was born under Fascism.

You assume there is pro-EU indoctrination in Europe's schools: wrong - for certain in Portugal, Holland and the UK, the EU stands out by being mostly ignored, rather than the subject of conversation and classes.

You know nothing of what you're talking about.

You make a lot of broad statement and talk the ideological talk of evil large government, lack of accountability, centralisation, freedom, a propagandistic education system, citizenship - the beautified spiel of the parrot repeating the words without having really aquired a deep understanding of the whys and hows. Your pretty building is just a facade, not something made through the real work of building it from the foundations up, one brick at a time - no depth, just a wall of grand-sounding words.

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 11:38 | 3046814 centerline
centerline's picture

Hmmm... too bad the banks are running the show.

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 12:23 | 3046890 Acet
Acet's picture

Yupes. This whole "it's the fault of the EU" is all a game of smoke and mirrors. It's the banks running the show.

At the end of the day, it's national politicians supporting their local buddies in their local banks and using the EU institutions to do so. Everybody is in it for their on nation: from the German politicans trying to keep together a currency that has given them huge competitive advantages as an exporter and trying to support the likes of Deutsche Bank, to the politicians in the PIIGS trying to avoid loosing the sinecures and priviledges they have setup for themselves and their buddies over the years.

I'll admit that some of the European instituations are being used in the whole scheme of propping-up the banks, as vehicles for each country's politicians supporting their national banks, just like in their own countries they're supporting those banks with bailouts, austerity for the middle class only and by not going after the bankers with criminal charges. However you will notice that's it's only the Euro related structures - something that, frankly, needs to go - used in this way, while there are a lot of good things in the EU that have nothing to do with the "Euro experiment" and should not be lost because of this.

The true problem is that in many countries the national politicians have been bought by the bankers and other big parasitical corporations, while at the same time having hooked a section of the population on uncondicional state support (welfare for the rich and welfare for the poor) and in the absence of the EU, these corrupt traitors would be destroying their own countries only probably some of those countries would have reverted to dictatorship by now.

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 12:18 | 3046874 Freddie
Freddie's picture

Why does the EUSSR make countries vote a second time or third until the country votes the way the EUSSR wants them to vote?    More politicians at supranational organizations means less freedom for citizens.  See the UN, World Bank, US Senate, etc for more examples.

You mention lack of accountability. The EU-SSR has never allowed opened or audited their finances.  A bit like Harry Reid and the Democrats not having a budget for 4 years going on 5.  It means the money is stolen from the taxpayers with no accountability.

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 15:07 | 3047145 HoaX
HoaX's picture

"The EU-SSR has never allowed opened or audited their finances"

This is another lie that circulates a lot in "quality" media like the Sun and Daily Mail, but factually untrue.

 

More than 94% of the European budget goes to citizens, regions, cities, farmers and businesses. The EU budget focuses on bringing growth and jobs (which admittedly isn´t going too great at the moment, but where in the western world is that different these days?), tackling climate change, migration, cross-border crime and other challenges that affect us all. It tries to help boost prosperity, for example by better interconnecting Europeans through energy, transport and ICT infrastructure, by supporting less well-off regions to create growth and jobs both there and in the rest of the EU, and by pooling efforts in areas like research and education (like the before mentioned Erasmus program). It is also about securing our own food supply. And finally, it is about making the EU's size count in the world - just as the US and China make their size count, and pooling our efforts to help the world's poorest people.

Think of air traffic liberalisation, passenger rights or cheaper roaming charges. Or think of the Commission's decisions in antitrust and cartel cases, where consumers have been cheated out of millions of euros through illegally inflated prices. In 2010, the estimated benefit to customers resulting from the Commission's cartel decisions was at least €7.2 billion.

Commission staff are in charge of negotiating trade agreements that help to bring down the price of consumer goods and offer a wider choice of affordable products. They are also involved in helping the EU to draw the right lessons from the financial and economic crisis through better regulation and supervision of financial markets. Administrative costs have been stable for a long time, and over the past five years serious efforts have been made to keep them low. The Commission has conducted a zero growth policy in relation to staff numbers. It has dealt with new competences and priorities through the redeployment of existing staff and has asked for no extra staff beyond those resulting from enlargement. The Commission also decided to freeze its administrative expenditure in 2012, a 0% change.

The part that goes to administration DOES get audited, problems arise with individual countries not signing off their books, the UK is especially notorious in this respect. Which reminds me, when has the last time been the UK government had its finances audited? Right, it never happened.

And no, I do NOT work in any way shape or form for the EU. Before you come with that one. I also think we should always stay vigilant and keep a close eye on what the EU and its commission actually does. Just sprouting slogans without doing any factual research doe not constitute an honest, let alone constructive debate though.

 

 

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 15:42 | 3047205 francis_the_won...
francis_the_wonder_hamster's picture

You lost me at "tackling climate change".

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 17:28 | 3047331 HoaX
HoaX's picture

You can subsitute that for "Invest in renewable energy"

Something the US (and UK soon http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2012/dec/09/fracking-laws-dash-for...) never really cared much about I admit.

We all know Al Gore and his CO2 tax are a fraud, that doesn´t mean all renewable energy sources are though, and if anything it makes us less dependent on oil price fluctuations. You in the US are lucky to be able to buy your barrels in dollars for the time being, but this is going to end, the Chinese and Russians are already working on that.

You can take an example in Germany in that respect, they have invested heavily in renewable energy, and yes, paid a premium on their energy bill for years. The future german generations though will be self-sufficient energy wise, and even able to export their surplus. I know the US has more of a mentality of "let´s frack the crap out of our shale reserves, who cares about the consequences" but some peoples do actually care about the legacy they leave behind.

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 23:42 | 3046365 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

 This is beyond stupid. Good job Iceland, creating /resurrecting a vibrant economy.

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 23:13 | 3046370 Seize Mars
Seize Mars's picture

Ok, look. Does Iceland currently have a fiat currency? Yes? Then it will all happen again.

Sauron 1, Middle Earth 0.

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 23:20 | 3046378 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

 I'm taking a shower. I just do not get how "320K" people living on a partially subsidized group of volcanic rocks, that can't even declare a sovereign currency is a success!

  BITCHEZ

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 23:25 | 3046381 willwork4food
willwork4food's picture

Something about what a wise man said a long time ago about being able to trust one in a small amount, then they could be trusted with a city...

We still love you YC!

 

 

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 23:29 | 3046387 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

me to

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 23:26 | 3046384 OutLookingIn
OutLookingIn's picture

Wall street and the TBTF's need a bunch of Vikings to go a bezerking on them!

 

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 23:30 | 3046389 W74
W74's picture

Grab your guns and pitchforks, that's the only way we in the US are going to get rid of the cockroach class.

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 23:32 | 3046392 Seasmoke
Seasmoke's picture

How many Jewish leaders in Iceland ?

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 23:48 | 3046417 Bansters-in-my-...
Bansters-in-my- feces's picture

Free Jon Corzine...!!!....

Sat, 12/08/2012 - 23:54 | 3046422 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

 lulz/ Corzine would ass rape Iceland and leave a giant monument that says " TRUMPH FAR NORTH"...

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 00:02 | 3046427 abelesnik
abelesnik's picture

Canceling and reneging on all debt works! It's also as old as the Old Testament, which had a Jubilee every 50 years where all debts were cancelled. Someone up there understandt the human psyche, which spins off into never never land in about 50 years, generating insane debt. All those creditors lose their shirts at the Jubilee, and have to start over. Jubilee is the the state saving itself. That's what Iceland did, and that's what needs to be done in EU and US, too. All those people holding that bogus paper can have a bonfire, and the world economy starts over. Who is hurt by cancelling debt. Exactly the people who caused the speculative escalating bubble. Serves 'em right.

De-valuation effectively is the same as a Jubilee. The sooner the better. The alternative is to keep creating Sovereign money out of thin air, which never catches up, and which just extends the economic malaise indefinitely. Eventually there will be a Jubilee, or reset. Only thing that prevents it is the power of the bankers and financiers and their influence on government. Prime example is Gaithner, of course, but same is true of all those fat cat Europeans.

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 00:29 | 3046437 HoaX
HoaX's picture

The problem is those who will renege on their debts are the very people who profited in creating it in the first place.

In the meantime the ordinary folks get shafted. Tell me, why would you save and try to be responsible if you can just rack up massive debts, live the good life while it lasts and then when it comes crumbling down just tell everyone to shaft themselves? (And yes, this is pretty much global banking these days). At least jail those responsible for accumulating it in the first place (like Iceland did, which I give them props for)

This might just work if there was a gobal, collective debt reset, but even then the countries and people who actually behaved responsibly and didn´t accumulate massive debts are the ones effectively paying the price unless the others are paying by serving life-long prison sentences.

Why do we convict rapists, murderers etc. on a personal basis but when it comes to companies we are all libertarians all of a sudden? Just like humans need laws because as much as we like to think so, people and companies when faced with the prospect of easy money, do not all behave responsibly, especially so financial institutions. No, they get senatorial hearings, a slap on the wrist, heck in the UK, named to be Lords. Keep calm and Carry on.

 

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 00:52 | 3046456 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

You are 100% correct HoaX. The hand that feeds... You Fucking Monkey!

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 11:46 | 3046825 centerline
centerline's picture

There is one simple fact that I alway come back to:  there have been no real arrests, convictions and complete fucking asset stripping of anyone in the financial sector.  We have seen the financial sector pretty much commit daylight robbery now with the Corzine fiasco.

This simple fact ought to say about everything one needs to know about who is in charge.  Knowing who is in charge leads to a pretty solid guess as to where we are headed.

 

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 10:24 | 3046724 Oldwood
Oldwood's picture

So those that borrow win and those who save will lose. Sounds perfect.

Sun, 12/09/2012 - 10:37 | 3046739 JR
JR's picture

Interpretation of Leviticus 25: 9-17

“The Year of Jubilee was meant to be celebrated every 50 years. It included canceling all debts, freeing all slaves, and returning to its original owners all land that had been sold. There is no indication in the Bible that the Year of Jubilee was ever carried out.”

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