This page has been archived and commenting is disabled.

"A Triumphant Recovery"? A First-Person Perspective Of What Is Really Happening In Greece

Tyler Durden's picture




 

In light of the recent "triumphant" return of Greece to the capital markets with its brand new 5 Year bond issuance (which much to the chagrin of the flippers is already trading below its breaking price), one of our Greek readers decided to provide his "on the ground" perspective on what is really happening in Greece.

To zerohedge team
Regarding the past two days in Athens, Greece

I follow your blog consistently. I am Greek and I trade on overseas (from my perspective) markets. I share a number of your views and would like to forward you my sincere thanks for revealing the ins and outs of algos all that time ago and managed to work my way around them. It was algos that caused to suffer a giant instant loss on “flashing Thursday”, which really awakened me as to the nature of the business and the markets. I doubt I would have ever progressed to get my head around certain concepts if it wasn’t for certain insights you provided.

I am writing you in an effort to get you to provide a more public and harsh(I mean realistic) description of what has been going on, for the past few days with relation to what’s left of my country. I doubt it will not take you long to discover its mostly spent on “political commissions” and interest payments (I’d bet only 6-7% actually flows through). I am sure you are aware that according to Greek law all political parties receive some kind of (substantial) financial support from the government budget. The government has not delivered. There are still over 900,000 people working for public and government related services, for a population of roughly 11 million. The banks still maintain negative real equity and have consistently defrauded investors over the past few years. In the second half of 2013, the recap programs they supposedly undertook, ended up causing even more losses or at least leaving the balances of investors enormously negative. No one stood up and said a thing, not even the Union of Greek Banks, whose job is essentially to help investors, not help banks defraud investors. The head of this organization actually happens to have an interesting history involving various scandals and frauds (I know what you are going to say, who isn’t at this point).

In all the panic and the lying, the current administration, a bunch of second generation hustlers who are professional politicians, (if there is such a thing…I think it was Plato that understood politics best. “leave politics to the philosophers” he said.) are parading our re-entry to the Fed sponsored EZ sovereign debt markets like it’s a triumph, when in fact what little is left of my age old country is being raped and levered. The guided media are applauding or better while the greater population which has no sense of what the difference between a stock and bond is, doesn’t know whether to cry or hang themselves.

But when Frau visits, the whole city has to stop what it’s doing. I think I saw several accidents on the way home. The entire traffic in the centre of the city has to come to a complete halt for over three and a half hours (I know because I was in the fucking car for two and a half and then another hour at least spent waiting at a single point in Zografou, some 3-4 kilometers away from the closed out area of the center.

Summoning as much naivety and faith as possible, I would love to see your stream of though and criticism concerning the true raping and pillaging being done in my country. And while we are “too small to matter”, sometimes all it takes is for someone to shed a speck of light in an otherwise blackened cave, in order to slowly find our way out, or in this case to show the true nature of things, which is lost in the eyes of the outside world, in what is effectively a third world society.

Sincerely and with Respect
G.K. Kolmer

 

- advertisements -

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.
Sun, 04/13/2014 - 10:54 | 4653903 Kirk2NCC1701
Kirk2NCC1701's picture

Malaka!  Bring out Die Frau!

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 11:15 | 4653931 Arius
Arius's picture

"There are still over 900,000 people working for public and government related services, for a population of roughly 11 million."

thats around 8-9% ... you think thats high?  what do you think is in other places?

what do you think is the percentage of people working for local, state and federal government related services in the United States of America?  Try 40-50% .... what else is working in the USA besides going to school and working for the goverment (well, yes, hospitals, insurance companies, fast food etc.)

 

My dear friend ... quit playing these markets, after you figured algos ... there is a golden rule: you cant win against the casino ...

 

one more question for you ... what do you think the markets exist in the first place?  you think they need your cash for "investments"?  they can print as much as they want to ... it exist for one reason only .... to put in the words of Rothchild (old Nat) "it is difficult to make money, but more difficult to keep it" ... the markets exist to separate fools from their hard earned cash ...

this advice comes from a never recovering addict ... however, we will survive ....

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 11:16 | 4653965 nightshiftsucks
nightshiftsucks's picture

And you're not happy when bankers die ?

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 11:19 | 4653971 linniepar
linniepar's picture

Sovereignty?  We don't need no stinkin' sovereignty! 

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 11:52 | 4654044 HardAssets
HardAssets's picture

Forward Article to People of Ukraine

(or anyplace where bankster 'rescuers' are invading)

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 16:52 | 4654845 drstrangelove73
drstrangelove73's picture

Interesting question you pose.
Current US employment=137 million;(down from 144 million 2007)
Current state,federal and local government employed=22 million.

Percentage S,F,L govt. employed= 16%

Tue, 04/15/2014 - 20:46 | 4663552 malek
malek's picture

US population is roughly 313 million.

22 / 313 = 7.02%

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 11:53 | 4654050 _ConanTheLibert...
_ConanTheLibertarian_'s picture

Moussaka?

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 10:53 | 4653908 ZeroPower
ZeroPower's picture

 someone to shed a speck of light in an otherwise blackened cave,

 

I see what he did there...

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 10:54 | 4653909 Tinky
Tinky's picture

So in summary, and with a nod to ancient history, the Greeks are taking it up the ass?

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 11:23 | 4653980 Arius
Arius's picture

with all due respect, who isn't?

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 11:55 | 4654056 HardAssets
HardAssets's picture

Tinky:  "So in summary, and with a nod to ancient history, the Greeks are taking it up the ass?"

 

'Greek' ?  "up the ass" ?     I don't know what the terminology is in non US places, but that's pretty damned ironic.

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 10:58 | 4653926 Kirk2NCC1701
Kirk2NCC1701's picture

Where are "The 300"?

Don't feel bad, Greece.  The US has 300 million sheeple and 200 million gun toters, and it doesn't have The 300 either.  Sad to say.  See Exhibit A:  Bundy Ranch 'insurgents'

   http://wonkette.com/546372/bundy-ranch-insurgents-physically-fight-feder...

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 12:58 | 4654205 Carl Popper
Carl Popper's picture

Oh we have the 300 alright
More like 3000.

They dont hang out on the internet and make themselves targets

You almost got a chance to see them in action

Do you think guys take their black powder artillery to civil war re enactments for fun and games?

They go there to train. Black powder artillery with thermite shells, grape shot, and low explosive shells with procimity fuses will ruin your fucking day

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 16:41 | 4654822 drstrangelove73
drstrangelove73's picture

You need an avatar to go with your handle there,Karl.How about a bent poker?:-)

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 22:26 | 4655606 DirkDiggler11
DirkDiggler11's picture

Damn Kirk, you actually read shit from this site ? Surprising ...

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 11:01 | 4653932 rsnoble
rsnoble's picture

Recoveries ONLY!!! NO DEFAULTS!!!!!!!

Fucking clowns.

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 11:39 | 4653987 HardlyZero
HardlyZero's picture

yes.  It will probably be cycles of "recoveries" and defaults, depending on political cycles.

Swirl-o-gram Circus.

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 11:03 | 4653937 hooligan2009
hooligan2009's picture

sad thing is that what is happening in public in greece, is happening in private in germany, china, us, uk, japan etc..remember, the time when there is a light in a blackened (debt) cave is when there is a fiscal surplus in a country and debt starts to be repaid without the printing of (debt with no interest and no maturity) money by central banks.

you also get the solution you vote for...people are voting for a meltdown in markets via a tried and true "bread and circus" welfare mobocracy.

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 12:02 | 4654077 HardAssets
HardAssets's picture

hooligan2009:  "you also get the solution you vote for"

Sorry my friend, you do know about the rigged electronic 'voting' machines that can't be audited ?

We don't vote for squat.

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 12:30 | 4654156 hooligan2009
hooligan2009's picture

all part of the same problem..but, yes, point taken

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 19:58 | 4655245 HardAssets
HardAssets's picture

hooligan2009:  "all part of the same problem.."

Ain't that the truth.  Regards, - - -

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 11:09 | 4653947 agent default
agent default's picture

From what I gather, Greece issued bonds under English law, which gives the creditor all sorts of rights in case of a default.  So they didn't really sell any bonds there, just tickets to a fire sale.  

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 11:12 | 4653954 A_Nejad
A_Nejad's picture

It is a hard fact, but it is what it is: Didn't the Greek themselves had the golden opportunity to get out the EU (which they obviously hate that much...) during the last election they had like just some months ago...and elected to stay in EU/Euro currency union?  If Greece is the "mother place" of democracy (there are debates on that though...), wouldn't they by now understand that in a democracy you can not have it both ways...You had your chance, you didn't want to do an Iceland (or even Hungary for that matter...), because your politicians are corrupt like hell...and you still vote for the same politician (specially the fat bastard finance minister of yours...).  Honestly, that is why these Greek demonstrations do not take any of other European citizens attention at all....you make the bed you lie in my Greek friends, and this time, not even the all mighty (ehmmm...) King Leonidas will be able to help you.

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 11:46 | 4654027 MillionDollarBoner_
MillionDollarBoner_'s picture

Greece may be the ""mother place" of democracy" but Socrates was forced to commit suicide when he suggested that democracy was flawed - essentially the first reference to the FSA - and that "philosopher kings" would be a preferable alternative.

Trouble is - "philosopher kings" tend towards tyranny, dictatorship and nepotism.

Tonight's ZH homework: Discuss the above in the light of Plato's "Republic"...;O)

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 12:00 | 4654066 Wolferl
Wolferl's picture

Yep, the guy has no clue about Plato. But the Greeks today are notorious underachievers anyway and have nothing in common with the ancient Greeks beside a name.

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 13:03 | 4654215 Fred Hayek
Fred Hayek's picture

Read I.F. Stone's The Trial of Socrates. It's a very interesting book. He apparently began writing with the presumption that he would show what rubes and lowlifes the Athenians were who wanted to exile Socrates. Instead, what he found was that Socrates was no great friend of democracy. The citizens of Athens didn't like him because he was a terrible snob and extremely cozy with anti-democratic elements in Athens.

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 14:06 | 4654374 Kirk2NCC1701
Kirk2NCC1701's picture

Ah, "The Philosophers".  They had it figured out:

 

Immanuel Kant was a real pissant
Who was very rarely stable.
Heidegger, Heidegger was a boozy beggar
Who could think you under the table.
David Hume could out-consume
Wilhelm Freidrich Hegel,
And Wittgenstein was a beery swine
Who was just as schloshed as Schlegel.

There's nothing Nietzsche couldn't teach ya'
'Bout the raising of the wrist.
Socrates, himself, was permanently pissed.

John Stuart Mill, of his own free will,
On half a pint of shandy was particularly ill.
Plato, they say, could stick it all the way;
Half a crate of whiskey every day.
Aristotle, Aristotle was a bugger for the bottle,
Hobbes was fond of his dram,
And Rene Descartes was a drunken fart: "I drink, therefore I am"
Yes, Socrates, himself, is particularly missed;
A lovely little thinker but a bugger when he's pissed!

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 14:46 | 4654485 angel_of_joy
angel_of_joy's picture

Brilliant !

+100

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 16:50 | 4654840 hooligan2009
hooligan2009's picture

don't forget to credit the monty python team for that song... my favorite will always be the "european or african" answer to the swallow question

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 20:01 | 4655250 HardAssets
HardAssets's picture

@kirk - hilarious !    :)

 

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 12:46 | 4654176 Crtrvlt
Crtrvlt's picture

about 30% voted for the ruling proeuro party. Unfortunately the system works as follows

Of the 300 seats, 250 are elected proportionally, with voters selecting the candidate (or candidates depending on the size of the constituency) of their choice by marking their name on the party ballot, while the other 50 are given as a bonus to the party receiving the largest share of the vote, and are filled by candidates of that party not declared elected on the lower rungs (the constituencies).

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 16:51 | 4654832 nicxios
nicxios's picture

No. There was no party running on the platform of leaving the EZ and returning to the drachma. Not even the far right Golden Dawn. Fact, not fiction. CHECK THAT: There was one, Marxist KKE! LOL!

If you recall, prior to that election, PM G-Pap wanted to hold a referendum on it and practically the next day Brussels installed Papademos as Prime Minister.

 

Mon, 04/14/2014 - 01:17 | 4655927 TeraByte
TeraByte's picture

Yes the Greeks themselves ought to do some soul searching, although many of them are not the main culprits. The sovereign default the sooner the better is the best option, where they could denounce all the debt and start from a scratch again. The fundamentals  before the first bailout were so grim that a realistic escape from the debt spiral never existed, when the "growth out from debt" option equalled 30 yrs China growth at 10%.
Unfortunate to Greece their historical track record is red too. Past two hundred years of defaults quite regularly and hardly any year in between black figures. You make a default, but continue with the same captain on the rudder and the deckhands and this will become a pattern like in Argentina and it always the grass roots, who will be punished disproportionately harshly every time things turn sour.

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 11:12 | 4653956 slightlyskeptical
slightlyskeptical's picture

Nothing changes until the people being ruled over stand up and fight.

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 14:50 | 4654496 MS7
MS7's picture

Yes, but they have to fight in a smart way, or else the US/EU will lend a helping hand to the cause with nazis (like in Ukraine) or al qaeda (like in Syria) and ruin everything.

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 11:14 | 4653961 Jack Burton
Jack Burton's picture

Much of America is being raped to a similar degree. I see poverty growing all around me, real grinding poverty. Negative returns for workers who try and save. All money flowing to Washington DC, the Whore House on the Patomic. Greece I feel sorry for you, much was self inflicted when the EU came selling you the Euro dream. You can't borrow your way to prosperity, you must save your way to prosperity. But it's too late now, the bankers of the IMF and ECB have strip mined and enslaved a whole nation of Greece. Others will meet the same fate. As for the Frau, she should be run out of Greece on a rail. Now that whore has her sight set on getting Ukraine into the banker fold. EuroMaidan shit heads, do you know what is coming? Look at Greece for the model. When do people rise up? It seems never. And if you want to see the biggest hoax going right now, look into the much promoted UK Economic Growth Recovery! Greatest hoax on earth! Media and liars try and put forward UK austerity as the key to economic growth! It's all fake.

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 11:17 | 4653969 fonzannoon
fonzannoon's picture

There is plenty of opportunity abound. I live near brooklyn and people are constantly complaining about the rents there skyrocketing, meanwhile you can actually live there with a great view for free.

 

http://nypost.com/2014/04/13/vagrants-take-shelter-within-manhattan-brid...

 

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 11:37 | 4654003 HardlyZero
HardlyZero's picture

Check out William Gibson's sci-fi Johnny Mnemonic (1995) a cyber-punk precursor to Matrix (with KR).  They take over the bridge.

https://www.google.com/search?q=Johnny+Mnemonic+bridge+picture&es_sm=93&...

Amazing times.

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 14:16 | 4654400 luckystrike6
luckystrike6's picture

I think you're thinkin of "Virtual Light" (also by Gibson). Great book. It was the Golden Gate bridge, I think, but same difference.

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 13:27 | 4654275 Al Huxley
Al Huxley's picture

OK, great feelgood story and its nice to hear the NY housing issue's been sorted out, but the real story there was that 'Kate Upton Hates Her Breasts' - why is this important national emergency not receiving more coverage?

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 14:05 | 4654377 29.5 hours
29.5 hours's picture

 

 

"why is this important national emergency not receiving more coverage?"

Because the weather.

Brutal U.S. winter has chilling effect on prom spending plans

 

 

 

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 15:03 | 4654517 MS7
MS7's picture

Well said, although I'm not sure I agree with the self-inflicted part. Greeks didn't know about the state of their government's finances. Supposedly (although this is a stretch) neither did other EU countries nor the banks that lent them money.

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 11:21 | 4653973 intric8
intric8's picture

I hear the EU is\will sponsor 2 bill plus euro for infrastructure projects in greece and will write it off. Can anyone confirm this?

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 11:29 | 4653992 vyeung
vyeung's picture

IMF/WORLDBANK/BIS/FED/ESF/PPT = fascist / nazi takeover.

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 11:30 | 4653996 BadKiTTy
BadKiTTy's picture

I dont know how representative this perspective is but by guess - pretty much.  EU 'citizens' have sat on the sidelines and watched it happen with the hope that it wont happen to them.  Same when Hitler made his move and Chamberlain came back waving his 'peace in our time' paper.  

I wonder if as a species we are programmed to sit 'caught in the headlights' or if we just cant take too much reality, preferring to lose ourselves in some alternative perspective which we believe in just enough to keep us from having to realise we have to save ourselves. 

Those in power figured this out a long time ago.  They know about our herding instincts, and our willingness to suspend disbelief in the face of propaganda.  The means of our pacification have been well practiced over the years and are practiced today.  

To think for yourself and to stand on your own two feet is the mark of being a person, which is why part of the strategy is to undermine this whilst telling us we are free. 

Good luck to the Greeks, no doubt the first of many. 

K@ 

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 11:35 | 4654005 hooligan2009
hooligan2009's picture

most people just want to be left alone ... most polticians and (central) bankers want to control their lives, take their money and pay it to their buddies.. it has always been thus.. luck has little to do with it... making money out of people's ignorance is the name of the game... hide things, dress them up, lie, cheat and steal to get what you want from someone weaker and less intelligent or more tolerant than yourself has always been the way to get ahead... win/lose is a survival technique when you are too dumb to be civilized and work in a way that benefits everyone

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 11:35 | 4654007 northerngirl
northerngirl's picture

Nothing is going to change in any country until people learn life is tough, and yes you do have to work hard to provide for yourself.  Bitter pill to swallow especially when people are looking for something for nothing.  

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 13:36 | 4654304 DR
DR's picture

Hard work under a corrupt government only equals more income for the rentier class...

 

 

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 17:59 | 4655004 roadhazard
roadhazard's picture

But no, people would like to work but the robot took over or there job went off shore.

My philosopher is Lewis Black.

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 11:53 | 4654052 Fix-ItSilly
Fix-ItSilly's picture

How can anyone claim Greece has been strip mined or enslaved?  The IMF, EU and EZ keep funding Greece who returns the money.  This avoids what in the old days would be a visit from the lender's army.

That's not strip mining by uncaring "outsiders", nobody is taking anything from Greece!  All Greece is receiving is a just return on decades of crony payoffs.

Disappointed. Here's a Greek - yet no anectdotal or on-the-ground details? 

So some stories about its just return is much appreciated.

~ tax collection success?  Pool tax?  Electricity tax? RE tax?

~ farming frictions?

~ healthcare reform?  pharma supply? 

~ maintenance and repair of hospitals, industry plants, power generation?

~ what is inflating? deflating?

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 13:38 | 4654301 NoDecaf
NoDecaf's picture

They are stuck with the euro. If they had their own currency they could depreciate and become competitive, but no...they are locked into a situation where all they can do is institute austerity (budget cuts) and tax increases. The end result is that most asset classes are sold off. That is the strip mining that he was talking about.

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 15:30 | 4654584 OpenThePodBayDoorHAL
OpenThePodBayDoorHAL's picture

LOL "nobody is taking anything from Greece" LOL

Just exactly where do you think the interest payments go? They're forced to borrow to cover the debt service...which goes back to Frankfurt and Milan and Paris and NYC.

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 16:28 | 4654783 Fix-ItSilly
Fix-ItSilly's picture

Who in their right mind would loan capital to Greece?  Greece should be grateful for anything it receives, at whatever vig is demanded.

They lied and cheated to enter the EZ. 

Their Govt is so terribly corrupt it cannot even collect taxes!  For even tax collection is corrupt.

And since everyone was "in" on the crony corruption, everyone felt entitled.

Now you want to complain that there is someone willing to loan money into this cesspool?  Be grateful and correct Greek society before chastising the lenders.

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 18:40 | 4655082 CrabNuggetOne
CrabNuggetOne's picture

You are an ignorant piece of shit. If you had read and understood anything in this site you would understand that the purpose of the debt is to enslave. The Greek people never asked for nor needed these 'loans', rather corrupt politicians and bankers did in order to enrich themselves at the Greek people's expense.

 'Who in their right mind would loan capital to Greece'. CAPITAL you wrote, you ignorant piece of shit. NO 'capital' was loaned, FIAT was loaned, that is, created out of nothing, ex nihilo toilet paper.

You don't even understand the difference between capital and worthless pieces of paper, you should just fuck off and get youself an education, or better still an enema to clear your thinking, you utter PRICK!

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 16:28 | 4654787 Marco
Marco's picture

http://www.tradingeconomics.com/greece/balance-of-trade

 

For the moment they have the better part of this deal ... there are countries which are truly being bled dry, with a trade surplus but a current account deficit ... but Greece isn't one of them.

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 11:59 | 4654063 DR
DR's picture

Investors don't care about the 'fundamentals' of the Greek economy. All they care about is that the ECB is going to implicitly guarantee the private issuing of the Greek soveign bond. Draghi will print if necessary to cover the bond holders and will not let Greece default which would destroy the Euro. Why do you think the bond offering was oversubscribe 8:1?

 

http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/04/10/greece-bonds-idUSA8N0LW01I2014...

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 12:27 | 4654142 nelsonmandella
nelsonmandella's picture

moron I know lots of Greeks most of them Know lots of Russian 

Greece if for the Oligarcs - (Finished and Kla- ober unt out)

ddr VS USSA 

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 12:52 | 4654189 icanhasbailout
icanhasbailout's picture

May I (re-)present Mr. Panos: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zvl9N9GdraQ

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 13:05 | 4654219 no more banksters
no more banksters's picture

"The systemic establishment will exploit the fear that its mainstream media are distributing to the people since the beginning of the crisis. The message is simple: vote for the system to return to markets, security, investments or else you will get absolute destruction. Of course, what we've seen in Greece so far is in reality the absolute destruction, with poverty, unemployment, inequality, public debt breaking every previous record. The difference is that it's been done systematically by the troika economic murderers."

http://failedevolution.blogspot.gr/2014/04/when-system-blackmails-societ...

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 13:11 | 4654233 free_lunch
free_lunch's picture

TroikaWatch from now on brings news on the Troika, the situation in the countries affected by it and the civil opposition and resistance against it. A monthly newsletter will be published in nine different languages, available at the website www.troikawatch.net

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 13:46 | 4654326 TheKoreanOption
TheKoreanOption's picture

Greece's fate was sealed when it lied to get into the EU in the first place.  In doing so, they guaranteed that they would be the worst off of the EU countries when things invariably went wrong.  Things did, and now they are.

Their only chance at salvaging their dignity, and their country, is to pull out of the EU right now.  They do not have an economy that is capable of withstanding the linkage to the more developed economies of Europe.  Everyone loves sunshine and olives, but thoseare not enough to get Greece out of this hole.

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 14:24 | 4654416 Peter Pan
Peter Pan's picture

We are all on the slippery slope headed towards the day of reckoning. The USA without its army and its printing press would be a greater hell than Greece.

In the absence of a massive write off of unserviceable debt, a write off of malinvestments, curbing of government expenditure, curbing of people's expectations, a respect and an even application of the rule of law and the punishment of bankers and politicians, then nothing will change for the better in Greece or any other country.

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 19:16 | 4655174 SofaPapa
SofaPapa's picture

"curbing of people's expectations"

 

I will never forget after 9/11, Bush's message to "live your life, go shopping!"  I knew at the time it was completely surreal, and yet I still was not awakened to the complete degradation of our political / economic system that this campaign represented.  To be telling us we would have war simultaneously with an orgy of consumerism was truly the tip off, and yet I still subscribed at that point to the naive thought that this was a "Bush problem" and when we got rid of Bush, the system would correct itself.  Then, watching 2008 / 2009 I woke up completely to the level of insanity which represents our current political / eoncomic "elite", and to the levels of propaganda to which our population has been subject for my entire lifetime, seemingly (I was born around the time that Nixon took us off the gold standard).

 

I think most people now know in our hearts that we are headed for disaster.  But few see concrete actions they can take.  Some still believe voting for an (R) or a (D) makes a difference, which I find sad.

 

I here offer a very simple step which would make a big difference, but which likely will never happen.  If enough people retrained themselves to one of two behaviors, a real change would occur:  1) (ideal) people should quit the addictive habit of mass media.  Turn off the TV and the radio, etc.  These are vehicles for more misinformation than can even be conceived of by the average soul.  If not 1), then there is a second, lesser but still very powerful, behavior which would help.  In fact, I admit to continuing to be exposed to some TV shows (through the internet) because I find them entertaining, so I already am part of the crowd who is not following 1).  But the second behavior, 2), is so simple I would love to see it take off, and I do practice this one religiously.  For all advertising, turn off the sound.  That's it.  If anyone has ever watched a TV when the sound is off, you realize quickly what a different experience it is.  A huge amount of the power of the TV is the repetition of language.  Without that, it's another world.  Same thing with radio.  Are there still bad messages and propaganda in the actual content we are watching / listening to?  Yes, without a doubt.  But removing the sound track from advertising is a big big dent in exposure to the virus.

 

Again, I like this strategy because it is not a sacrifice.  No one likes the "advertising soundtrack".  No one misses it when it's gone.  And it's just a small matter of training ourselves to take a trivial action every few minutes while we are engaged with the media.  That trivial action yields huge benefits in clarity of mind.

 

I'll get off my stump now, but I hope these behaviors can continue to grow. I'm far from alone in these suggestions, obviously, and every little bit people lower their exposure to the toxic messages that are being spread in our society is a step toward personal freedom of the kind Cog Dis has been writing about.  Our minds are the battlefield.  Let's win this one.

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 23:11 | 4655694 Atticus Finch
Atticus Finch's picture

Just passed through the living room. The FBI was closing in on an criminal and the next scene looked like an Army bridage in full US military garb surrounding the property. Subtle message for getting everyone used to what is coming. On second thought, it already occurred at Bundy Ranch.

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 14:25 | 4654419 luckystrike6
luckystrike6's picture

The EU has had it wrong from the start. Pouring money into the infrastructure of agrarian, non-industrial countries, and then expecting them to be cheap labor and consumers for the rich industrial countries that control the currency? On paper it sounds like a great idea. In reality, you get mass migration, brain drain, real estate bubbles in the countries cursed with shoreline; and in those same countries, little benefit to the low-level service economy which would be servicing German tourists on the beach either way, but can no longer control their own finances.

What's disturbing and unfortunate is the rise of things like Golden Dawn - a neo-nazi party that rose in response to German manipulation no less.

The Spanish like to say, the Germans lost the first two wars because they were too focused on shooting people. This one, the third world war, they've won Europe with the stroke of a pen.

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 15:56 | 4654675 caustixoid
caustixoid's picture

Similar comments from a Greek with a non-German-sounding name:

http://yanisvaroufakis.eu/2014/04/09/the-grand-greek-paradox-bankrupt-bu...

Greek bonds popular as junk bonds chased by institutions with interest-free loans and because Berlin made clear they wouldn't kick Greece out of the Euro (i.e. ECB/Berlin backing)

http://yanisvaroufakis.eu/2014/03/01/what-you-should-know-about-greeces-...

Greek "Recovery" = Greek economy is still shrinking but less quickly. 

 

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 16:36 | 4654808 SubjectivObject
SubjectivObject's picture

Mr. Kolmer, you said:

"... sometimes all it takes is for someone to shed a speck of light in an otherwise blackened cave, in order to slowly find our way out, or in this case to show the true nature of things, which is lost in the eyes of the outside world, in what is effectively a third world society.

Perhaps Zerohedge can give you a Contributor's status to preriodically report on the real wold happening in Greece?

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 16:52 | 4654846 free_lunch
free_lunch's picture

The middle class is the backbone of society. The Greek philosopher Aristotle recognized this more than 2,300 years ago. But, a new study warns that the middle class in Germany is shrinking.http://www.dw.de/the-shrinking-middle-class/a-16457570

 

Anyone seeing a patern here?

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 17:30 | 4654942 GotGalt
GotGalt's picture

In the 'Fire & Ice' fantasy series of books that became the HBO 'Game of Thrones', there is a character (Tyrion) who in book 5 keeps asking 'Where do the whores go?'

 

I have a feeling most Zero Hedgers know the answer to that one...

Sun, 04/13/2014 - 23:14 | 4655701 RichardParker
RichardParker's picture

"900,000 people working for public and government related services, for a population of roughly 11 million", that works out to about 8.2%. 

Assuming US population is 317 million.  Total civilian employees at federal, state, and local levels is about 17 million full timers (less part time employees and military) which comes in around 5.4%. Assuming census numbers are legit.  LOL

https://www.census.gov/govs/apes/

Mon, 04/14/2014 - 02:38 | 4655996 elwind45
elwind45's picture

Summer is on its way

Tue, 04/15/2014 - 09:14 | 4660299 SteelRust
SteelRust's picture

"while the greater population (...) doesn’t know whether to cry or hang themselves."

 

I propose a third option: hang the banksters Laughing Out Loud all the way to the gallow, and more while they kick thier black souls out...

Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!