Greeks Need To Start Having Babies Again Or Face Financial Oblivion

Tyler Durden's picture

Authored by Narjas Zatat via,

People in Greece can’t afford to have more than one child, and many are opting to have none at all.

Fertility doctor Minas Mastrominas tells the New York Times that some women have decided not to conceive, and single-child parents have been asking him to destroy their remaining embryos.

He said:

After eight years of economic stagnation, they’re giving up on their dreams.

It isn’t just Greece suffering low birth rates. In fact the trend spreads to most of Europe, with Spain, Portugal and Italy also reporting dangerously low rates.

(Picture: Jakub Marian)


Why is this happening?

Unemployment continues to be a serious issue in Greece. Rates are slightly lower than in 2016 when they were 23.9 per cent, but are still very high at 23.5 per cent.

The slump has affected women more, with unemployment rates at 27 per cent compared to 20 per cent of men.

Child tax breaks and subsidies for large families have decreased, and the country stands at having to lowest budget in the EU for family and child benefits.


Women in the workforce.

During the height of the crisis, women postponed childbirth in favour of working. As the years dragged on, the rate of fertility decreased, making it biologically more difficult to conceive.

Additionally, gender equality came to a standstill, and many women of ‘childbearing age’ were denied employment, or had their contract changed to part time involuntarily, as soon as they got pregnant. 

What is the impact of low birth rates?

One of the most prominent areas that will be detrimentally affected is pensions and the welfare system. 

Additionally, according to Eurostat, such low birth rates – under 2.1 – could create a demographic disaster.

This will have a knock-on effect on pensions, with fewer young people working. 

Reduced pensions for grandparents, who traditionally took care of the family's children means that parents will have to reach into their dwindling budget in order to pay for child care.

All of these circumstances provides an unwelcoming environment for having children, creating a spiralling drop in birth rates.

HT The New York Times

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dark fiber's picture

Greece:  Vote left and when things go bad vote even more left.  I think their fate is a case of evolution in action more than anything else.

Donald Trump's picture
Donald Trump (not verified) dark fiber Apr 21, 2017 3:35 AM

Good luck with that. Is like asking a millennial bum to leave the parent's basement.

Greece = the country of millennial bums.

25 Percent Of Millennials Who Live At Home Are Bums

What Greece needs is a Bernie Sanders... more free shit. /jkng  But they still vote for the left. 

Did I ever tell you the definition of insanity?

GREECE!  Voting same shit over and over again while expecting different results.

Pandelis's picture

ZH editor strikes again ...

FrozenGoodz's picture

Greek ladies of ZH ... I'm available ;-)

Mtnrunnr's picture

there's 7 trillion fucking people on the planet. it's pretty obvious that population growth isn't the answer.

Itinerant's picture

Those numbers include the Islamic migrants, who are disproportionately fertile. Otherwise the numbers would look much worse.

It's 7 billion by the way, and not all of them are fucking: some are having far more babies than others.

ipso_facto's picture

'there's 7 trillion fucking people on the planet. it's pretty obvious that population growth isn't the answer.'

Okay, clarification: need population growth of productive people

Making Merica Great Again's picture

Greece needs a Donald Trump.


Let's make Greece great Again!

Justin Case's picture

Turn coat Trump? He's catering to the MIC. Didn't take long to pick up the batton from where Bozo dropped it.

rmopf2010's picture

Socialist have downvoted you, so I'll remind them left pukeheads the problem with Greece

"The rise of organised rent-seeking that took place under PASOK’s watch during the 1980s goes a long way toward explaining the persistence of these behaviors. […] Never before had so many people been hired by the state, with such salaries, pensions and benefits—to the point where the average government job paid almost three times the salary of the average private-sector job. An egregious but not isolated example was the national railroad company, which had annual revenues of €100 million against an annual wage bill of €400 million, on top of €300 million in other expenses. This is how the average state railroad employee came to earn €65,000 a year."

From the book

Offthebeach's picture

Sounds like Massachusetts.

edotabin's picture

Those that have been around for a while might remember me posting repeatedly about how the root of today's problems started with A Pap. He literally gutted Greece by subverting and decaying the ethos of the entire country using the "usual" tactics:

1. Debt

2. Debasing currency

3 simplifying the language

4. Causing extreme polarization and division

5. Destroying the family

6. Introduced PC language that sounded great but meant nothing.........

A Pap was sent to Greece from America and given huge sums to start the subversion process......err i mean the PASOK political party

rmopf2010's picture

Dear edotabin

Only in Greece ? my friend the problem is TPTB have sent "Papandreus" to ALL Countries of the so called free western.

That is why we have this comunism 2.0 which is far worst than comunism 1.0 imagine an ant and an elephant scenario.

Comunims is entrenched everywhere Big governments/Welfate state individuals account more than the private workers who really create wealth, so nothing will change.

Only place TPTB couldn't subverse is Russia IRS 13% flat tax it's a dream for other countries private workers but for the guys in the Big governments/Welfate state it is a night mare because they would up not getting their monthly paycheck.

This is freedom i will put my money where I want and not give it to the government so that afterwards government will give to the state dependents

I used to believe in Trump and Brexit but now I think for private workers around the globe only a Moses with his 10 plagues would save us from the tax burden on our shoulders.


BorisTheBlade's picture

No mercy from international creditors, Greece seems to be able to repay everything due regardless

The central planners's picture

Im pretty sure that the "moderates" muslims are willing to fill the gap and make Erdogan very proud.

Aurelian77's picture

I wonder what will happen with the Greek Islands. Turkey sends “refugees” to the Aegean Islands. Gradually, life becomes intolerable for the local Greeks (crime, harassment etc), local Greeks leave. Eventually Muslims become the majority. Muslims “vote” to join the Muslim paradise that is Turkey.

Long game.

Ghordius's picture

Turkey "sends" (actually, just forgets to patrol their shores as usual) war refugees - not "refugees" to the Greek islands, yes

what do those refugee do, when they arrive? they mostly leave the islands for the mainland

meanwhile, the Great Turk stopped this practice. thanks to a huge amount of EU funds that Dr. Merkel showed up his "Golden Gate"

yes, it is a long game. a "Great Game". made up of plenty of wars in the ME that no european actually wanted, starting with Freedom Fries For Iraq

Hyjinx's picture

Don't blame us because you Eurocucks can't control your borders. Stop being pussies.

Aurelian77's picture

Its just a theory. Most of these Islands have populations of 100,000 or less and could be very easily overwhlemed. Once there is a Muslim majority then its game over (unless you are prepared to use violence). You would be naiive to think that the Turks are not looking at all options, especially in this age of weak and cowardly European goverments and with the old enemy Greece on the verge of collapse

As for "war refugees", yes, from Pakistan, Iran and other war torn countries in the region. And its also worth noting that the greater majority of Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan are actually not "war-torn" at all.

Its nothing less than a massive f**king scam and it must end NOW.


OverTheHedge's picture

At the risk of waking up BritBob, it seems the prefect solution for both the Falkland Islands and Gibraltar: if the respective populations are replaced by people more likely to vote for change, then change will happen. How much would it cost to buy out all the sheep farmers on the Falklands? In national debt terms, nothing at all. make them all an offer they can't refuse, with freshly printed fiat direct from the Central Bank. Of course, Spain doesn't control the printing press, so it will just have to borrow a few million to buy out the pub-owners on the rock, and their few neighbours. Luckily, Spain's debt is nowhere near as high as it could be, so can hardly be a problem.

HenryKissingerChurchill's picture


yes, it is a long game. a "Great Game". made up of plenty of wars in the ME that no european actually wanted, starting with Freedom Fries For Iraq

sorry but the "Great Game" is at the belly of the beast : Kazakhstan

just ask ZBig for the details e.g. the Grand Chessboard and hundreds of related articles like

Milton Keynes's picture

Carter was the first Neo-Liberal Dem, and Brezinski, set Afghanistan on fire, that smoldering fire, burnt intensely during the Reagan

years, and Reagan sent legions of Jihadi's there.  The Jihadi's stewed until they burst out across the middle east.

The central planners's picture

Im pretty sure that the "moderates" muslims are willing to fill the gap and make Erdogan very proud.

turnball the banker's picture
turnball the banker (not verified) Apr 21, 2017 3:04 AM

Who gives a fuck?

Making Merica Great Again's picture

I can give them aaaalll the fertility they need

TheSilentMajority's picture

Economic "growth" via population growth is the greatest ponzi scheme ever created by evil globalists and greedy oligarchs.

Innovating and adapting to a slowly falling population is far better than filling your country with incompatible foreigners to meet some stupid arbitrary population goal.

1033eruth's picture

Very true, which is why we see no end to the population ponzi propaganda stories.  And of course, that's why the invasion of Europe by the Muslim breeders has taken place.  Politicians bribed by globalists want to ensure that the population ponzi in Europe doesn't end.  Muslims don't care whether they can afford children or not, government has promised them they will be provided for.

P.S.  Its not an "arbitrary" population goal.  The goal is never ending population growth which of course is insane.  

logicalman's picture

But, but...

The elites need more people to exploit!!


dark fiber's picture

The problem is that compound interest rate thing.  You know, where globalists really make their money.

MaxMax's picture

Correct.  Politicians want population growth because otherwise they can't pay for the promised entitilements, and this supports future demand for products, housing, etc.  Without population growth, the whole system starts deflating.  So the politicians figure, if their population won't reproduce, then they can force the issue by immigration.  But, that isn't so simple when you have huge cultural, religious and value differences with the immigrants.  And when you look at the long term trends in the growth of religions, it was obvious 20 years ago that Muslims would overtake Christians - and they have now as far as numbers.

What the politicians are ignoring is why their own populations don't want to have kids: they can't afford it.  With the rise of globalism, living standards are equalizing.  That's great for someone in China, but not so great for an industrialized nation where the young can't find jobs or good paying jobs, health care, education, taxes, cars and nearly all important stuff costs have soared.  The young today can't afford to have kids and so they don't.

Offthebeach's picture

Just as  the welfare,  big gov state made manufacturing too expensive, so to making babies.

So have manufacturing of cars and babies done overseas.  

So long as the politicos,  one party state, fiat fascists do well in guarded buildings and gated communities. 

Cloud9.5's picture

I have a Greek brother in law.  I love the Greeks.  Their hospitality is boundless.  My take away from visiting some of the islands was that I am surprised how arid some of them are.  You cannot sustain their current population on the revenues derived from pistachios and olive oil.

OverTheHedge's picture

The good news is that the islands, mostly, farm tourists. Good money in tourism, and it's all foreign exchange, so even better than oil and pistachios.

Of course, most Greeks live on the mainland, where there used to be light engineering, manufacturing etc. Germany sorted that lot out with the Euro, so now there is only olives and Pistachios to keep us all going. The islands don't like competing with the mainland for tourism, so all the advertising, budgets and resources go to the islands, not the mainland. It's logical, because without tourism the islands are uninhabitable, except for a very limited number of goat-herders. As an example, just short of half of my electricity bill is a subsidy I pay, to fund the cost of electricity on the islands. VAT on the islands is 10% for tourism-related businesses - I pay 25%. Perhaps I should move to an island. (BTW, the Ionian islands are very green and lush - not bare rocks like some of the others.)

According to this article (, 200,000 Greeks have left in the last five years. From a population of 11,000,000, that's quite a significant proportion of educated young go-getters. Anyone with any kind of education (which is almost everyone) is trying to get out. Part of the long, long history of the Greek diaspora. I suppose the good news is that these youngsters will be getting good-paying jobs abroad, and hopefully having babies, just not actually inside Greece. Make the other countries pay for the healthcare and education - why not? As long as they a) keep their heritage alive and b) actually return eventually, then all is good. Of course, in the meantime the indigenous population is made up of left-overs, also rans, the unemployable and the incompetent. Sometimes it shows.

canisdirus's picture

The problem is that they won't return. My family isn't Greek, but they were for many generations a genetic pocket of their origin country as they didn't mix outside their group (which numbers in the millions and covered a large geographic area) until the last century. Today, all the brightest of the group are mixed and have long-since moved away from that region.

My wife is eligible for a fast-track to citizenship program in the country her grandparents on one side were from and I'm eligible for a similar program in two countries my ancestors/grandparents came from. They're all in Europe, but sadly none would make us better off than we are now, which is why we would never do it. If that situation changed before we set down solid roots here, though, they'd have a shot at making our children their citizens.

beijing expat's picture

Or they could just declare a debt jubilee and tell the central banking cartel to get stuffed.

How come nobody mentions that option?

Singelguy's picture

That is eventually going to happen. Iceland did it and today the people of Iceland are much better off much to the chagrin of the British and Dutch bankers. Iceland had to suffer for a few years. Capital controls were imposed and no money could be borrowed internationally. Simply put, Iceland learned to live within its means and balance a budget. A good example for the rest of the world.

HenryKissingerChurchill's picture

Or they could just declare a debt jubilee and tell the central banking cartel to get stuffed. How come nobody mentions that option?

that option is anti semite!

other options like the Kalergi plan, are more kosher

Ghordius's picture

for a time, the theory was that affluence decrease fertility. now, the prevalent theory seems to be that joblessness does it
I'm mentioning this because there are plenty of theories about "people need hardship so that things become better", which I always found bogus
try to look at Greece from a 100 years perspective. you might find that Greek emigration was highest in several periods. a hint: those fertile young women? they often leave with a fertile young man looking for opportunity at let's say their uncle's business in Australia
look at the colours of the (excellent) map. do you "see" the eurozone? not really. do you "see" the nation states? well, a bit, yes
do you "see" Poland? where are some of the most fertile young Polish families? working hard elsewhere, for example in the UK
here, the problem of territory (for statistical purposes) versus the problem of the Nation. they do not overlap
neither Poles nor Greeks as Nations have a fertility issue. the "problem" is of their National Territories. and the "culprit" is Nation State... policies
but it's much easier to point a finger to something vague that begins with "Global"

my point: NS territories... compete for those young familes. and even in the same territory, the winner is often the city, while the loser is often the countryside

look at your Nation State and tell me with a straight face that this is not true

Jubal Early's picture

On a gold standard Greece never could have gotten herself into this mess, and Greece never should have been allowed into the ECU. They never would have made it without the cheating being performed by GS and other Ashkenazi gangster banks.  If Greek banks had gone bankruot in 1997 with the Italian banks during BCCI then the country likely would be prosperous new, as would all of southern Europe be if not for the Kommisars in Brussels taking orders from their satanic masters in Jerusalem.

The only mistake the Greeks made was not rising up when their elites lied and cheated to get them into the Union, but of course those elites were lying and cheating, just as Ghodius still does with his constant stream pro-EU propaganda.   This same Ghordius style propaganda is what kept the people from rising up after the outlawing of Golden Dawn and after the betrayal of Syriza and Tsiparas.

Ghordius's picture

actually the Greek Nation State's government managed to get into a similar mess while being on a gold standard and participating to a "standards" club not completely dissimilar from the eurozone's, the Latin Monetary Union

the trick at that time was to issue coins that were underweight in gold and silver

suggested reading: Greek_diaspora

meanwhile, I would love to have exchanges on what is wrong about the EU, here. my problem, though, is that I would like to debate about realities, and you and many others would like to debate fantasies

yes. if a government screws up, for example by spending like there is no tomorrow... that "tomorrow", the fertile young couples... eventually leaves the country. again, in the case of Greece this is one of the oldest phenomenons of the world

and neither communist nor fascist leaders putting medals on the breast of mothers of five or more do anything more then glossing over the fact that their young leave the country for better shores. and their response is often to find way to keep them against their will

Singelguy's picture

I agree that the Greek government has been both corrupt and incompetent. However, if Greece was not a member of the euro zone, they would just devalue their currency, the people would experience high inflation, but tourism would increase. Eventually Greece would just default on the debt, it would be restructured and the process would begin anew. Now they are trapped with an expensive currency, everything in sight is taxed making the German banks whole, and leaving the people impoverished. The only way out is for Greece to leave the euro and return to the drachma, default on the debt and like Iceland, start over. If there was a better future the young would stay home but for the Greeks, the currency is overvalued, leaving them uncompetitive with a shrinking economy, high unemployment and little hope.

P.S. What I just wrote applies to Italy, Spain, and Portugal as well. Greece is just further down the road.

Ghordius's picture

that's not true

the Greek government could revert to the Drachma and devalue. in fact, it literally begged the Greek People to be allowed to do so, particularly Varufakis when he was FinMin. the same with defaulting, really

but the Greeks refuse to have their government "steal their money from their pockets"

if it was not the EUR but it was gold... the whole would be completely identical

including your arguments, from "trapped with an expensive currency" leading to the usual Dr. Krugman's "deficits don't matter" Neo-Keynesian cargo cult

again, look at the history of Greece for the last one hundred years. the Greek Diaspora was already a huge thing before WWI

and look at those "spending bouts", and their subsequent crisis, all repeating, regardless of the currency used

Singelguy's picture

I am not disagreeing with you about Greece's irresponsible, incompetent and corrupt habits. It seems that is baked into their culture and that is not going to change anytime soon. My point is that the euro standard like the gold standard does not work for a culture like Greece. They need a floating currency. On the one hand, I understand that the Greek people refuse to have their government steal the money from their pockets. What they fail to realize is that Brussels, Berln, and Frankfurt are stealing the money from their pockets instead. The sad part is the Greek people can do nothing to stop that theft until they take matters back into their own hands which requires a default and a return to their own floating currency. Once that happens, any actions taken by the Greek government will directly affect the value of their currency. Until then, the government can blame the big bad wolves in Brussels for their plight and avoid taking any responsibility for the mess that they helped to create.

Ghordius's picture

actually... they are forgiving that debt, one tranche after the other, one meeting after the other. slowly, yes, very much so

do you actually know that the creditors of sovereign debt of most countries are more often then not... nationals, be it inside or outside the country?

yes, a lot of that Greek Sovereign Debt looks as if it was in the hands of foreigners

scratch the surface... and you'll find Diaspora Greeks owning it, be it in the US, in Australia or in... London

the problem with your "the euro standard like the gold standard does not work for a culture like Greece" is just this: it's ahistoric, i.e. it has no foundation in history

and an excellent example would be... Germany. read a bit the monetary history of Germany, and you'll see the same tragedies repeated several times

OverTheHedge's picture

Taken from this website, which may or may not be entirely accurate (, just short of 80% of the debt is owned by ECB, IMF and associated chums. I had NO IDEA that they were all ex Greek, second generation emigrants. Christine Lagardopoulopodou, Mario Drahgoudakis, etc. They must have changed their names to protect the innocent. Who knew.

Do you think that perhaps you were engaging in a little bit of hyperbole? (Also known as making-it-up, or in harsher circles, lying)?

Offthebeach's picture

Modern socialist state has kept asleep citizens for generations, and save for a few ideologues, few noticed.  Now that the experiment has reached its inevitable ending, the masses awake, but they have to learn ancient terms and forms that false so-called socialist scientists declared dead and buried.


HenryKissingerChurchill's picture

a hint: those fertile young women? they often leave with a fertile young man looking for opportunity at let's say their uncle's business in Australia

exactly... why work for €40k in Greece or Spain when you can do exactly the same work in Germany and get €80k???

the sad part is getting your "fair share" of rapefugees is not an incentive to have children, wherever you are

OverTheHedge's picture

A not very junior hospital doctor in Greece earns €1,500 per month, or thereabouts. Not much incentive to stay. They are all trying to get into the UK, or Germany. Nurses also want to

My mother had her eyes replaced recently (well the lenses, anyway), and they were done by a Greek doctor, who works for 2 weeks a month in the UK, which pays him enough to then offer FREE services for 2 weeks a month back home. There are still some people with values, it would seem.