It's Official - Greece Unveils The Negative Salary, And A Whole New Meaning For "Pay To Play"

Tyler Durden's picture

We thought we had seen it all. It turns out we hadn't. The country that gave the world the alphabet, philosophy, and plates with funny sexually ambiguous drawings on them, has outdone itself again. Because beginning this month some Greeks will have to pay for the privilege of having a job. From the Press Project:

Salary cutbacks (called "unified payroll") for contract workers at the public sector set to be finalized today. Cuts to be valid retroactively since november 2011. Expected result: Up to 64.000 people will work without salary this month, or even be asked to return money. Amongst them 21.000 teachers, 13.000 municipal employees and 30.000 civil servants.

Needless to say the BLS is salivating at the prospect of US workers paying for a job, as this will immediately allow them to double count said person's role in the employed part of the labor force (which incidentally has shrunk by 1% in the time it took to write this), as the money said "worker" pays can be used in the BLS hedonic models to theoretically hire many more people courtesy of fractional reserve lending. Now if only everyone would agree to pay for the joy of playing Solitaire 9 to 5, then all the world's problems would be solved.

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Crispy's picture

Slavery is now acceptable, eh?

Ruffcut's picture

It is time to sleep in. "mommy my teacher was so mad, she beat the shit out of me and took my lunch money."

trav7777's picture

lol, so what's the difference?  They pretended to work while greece paid them now greece pretends to pay them while they pretend to work.

Nobody's actually going to do shit when they aren't paid.

VanillAnalyst's picture

????? Seriously ????? These people should be working at fucking Chuck E. Cheese.

"They won't pay taxes, what should we do?"

"Oh Oh, well let's tell them we're lowering their wages, from 6 months ago, they'll understand."


HoofHearted's picture

Dude, I just figured out how to get my house remodeled! These contractors can come in and compete to see who will pay me the most to do the work on my house. I'll let the mechanics do the same when my car needs it. Why the hell didn't I think of this before? I just don't have the genius of the Greek government, I guess.

RopeADope's picture

Contractor's are already in the business of paying you to get your house remodeled. Its called competitive bidding in a destroyed economy by desperate people educated by a failing educational system. Negative margins in the U.S. are the new normal until those pesky labor rates can be crushed to third world levels.

Harlequin001's picture

Who cares? The chances of promotion have got to be huge...

Let me guess, "last one out can assume the rank of Captain and if you wouldn't mind, please turn out the lights"...

skistroni's picture

I love ZH for exposing the truths, but sometimes (happens often lately) in regard to Greece, picking up exaggerated stories from click-hungry media sources, takes it too far and breaks on the other side of truth.

To the point of the matter: the retroactive cuts will be reduced from salaries in a few monthly instalments. There will be no negative payslips. No-one would accept a negative payslip. 

This does not change the fact, that some monthly payments this year (and the next) will not be enough for many households to have a positive balance in the end of the month. It does not change the fact that this is already the case every month for several families.


Harlequin001's picture

Well Skistroni, thanks for pointing that out but humour aside, I think we kind of 'sussed it'...

skistroni's picture

Exaggerating things, in my book, puts someone at the same level with those who prophesize "chaos and civil war" if we default and go back to the drachma. Mental and emotional blackmailers of the people. 

To be clear, I'm talking about the original source, and not about TD. Checking outrageous stories before posting would help. On the other hand, I can't think of any story coming out of Greece these days that is NOT outrageous...

Harlequin001's picture

I take it that you are a Greek and in that you have my symapthies. Whilst I understand what you say, there is no way anyone can take this headline seriously in my view.

I've been to Greece on a number of occasions, lovely place and very friendly people, it is an absolurte shame what is happening over there. The problem is that it is cioming over here, wherever 'here' is...

and whilst yes a bit of checking wouldn't go amiss, I don't think anyone here takes everything that's posted in all due severity. Some of it is just so wild as to be funny...

newworldorder's picture

Pinto Currency;

If your source is correct and for these 2 reasons alone if nothing else, the Greek people should rise up and revoke the citizenship of any politician who voted for this treasonous act. That the EU should steal from a member country retroactively, without allowing CDS protections to be invoked and without haircuts for the ECB, IMF and other entities is an atrocity on the soul of a people.

Yes, the Greeks are partly responsible for their financial problems, but the greater responsibility rests with the EU, ECB and the enablers of worl wide ponzi schemes, - our very own Squid, who is enjoying the full protection of the FED and the US Congress.

TruthInSunshine's picture

They should introduce the pay-to-work model to approx 70% of federal, state and local units of government in the U.S.

That would save hundreds of billions in taxpayer money each year, make government almost as efficient as private enterprise, and only leave those who actually work and want to produce left at offices of The Department of FUBAR and The Secretary of BOHICA.

matrix2012's picture

Many Asian people who experienced the Asia Crisis in 1997 will pretty much understand  the current crises and dire situation in several Southern Europe with Greece as the 1st falling victim. Russian folks who experienced the 1998 ordeal will comprehend this situation as well. 

I wonder if Greek people will eventually take this severity peacefully (in relative speaking) as more and more austerity acts are to be implemented, given their awareness on who are the culprits/accomplices (internally) and the banksters who throw them into the black hole (externally).


Harlequin001's picture

I moved to Asia just after the crisis and it was stunning to see the time warp that was suspended building projects and uncompleted roads. That was a blip, and what comes next will be truly horrible because this time there is no IMF to bail anyone out with cheap loans...

Someone somewhere is going to take the only option left available to him/her and take these people out. When they do we will probably label them as a nut, just like we always do... that's what the media is for, to give us our opinion is it not?

What is coming will be worse by orders of magnitude...

skistroni's picture

Point taken. I appreciate your post. Sorry, but it's difficult not to be bitter these days over here.

Cathartes Aura's picture

@ Harlequin001:

I've been to Greece on a number of occasions, lovely place and very friendly people, it is an absolurte shame what is happening over there. The problem is that it is cioming over here, wherever 'here' is...

"here" is wherever "there" has been.  . . these policies, via IMF and other globalist overseers have been exported to other nations for decades now, and amrkns for the most part have been oblivious, out shopping & playing - as long as it's "over there" what's the problem?

as you say, "the problem" is the global story is being read to amrka soon, as the circle closes. . . what goes around. . .

dark pools of soros's picture

if you want real reporting go to the onion

Ghordius's picture

skistroni, thanks for the input - I appreciate very much your spirit on the exaggeration of facts - and yes, facts about Greece these days are outrageous enough.

I find interesting your comment "if we default and go back to the drachma", would you be so kind and expand your view on this?

skistroni's picture

I'll just say we will make it through. Need produces arts, as an ancient saying goes.

prains's picture

This does not change the fact, that some monthly payments this year (and the next) will not be enough for many households to have a positive balance in the end of the month.


still sounds like fractional reserve working to me

redpill's picture

Soon the only job left in Greece will be rioter.

The Big Ching-aso's picture



I would not want to be a foreigner restaurant patron in Athens wihile wage-slashed Georgios cooked up his phlegm special souvlaki.

Leopold B. Scotch's picture

Note to Germans: Avoid Greece the next few holiday seasons...

tabasco71's picture

Give it a break... tourism is about all this country has left... don't start hobbling that too

Going Loco's picture

I don't think many people will want to come to Greece this year in view of what is likely to be the ongoing newsflow.

RopeADope's picture

I am surprised we have not heard of the Greek social media platform IPO Macebook. All Macebook would need is to sell $100 million worth of private rioter information to local law enforcement authorities to justify a $50 billion market cap. If Macebook was secretely funded by the state all of the IPO proceeds could go to payoff the banksters. Further riots would ensue after the bankster payoff and Macebook would book enough additional revenue to justify a $20 billion secondary offering at 1000x TBV.

The growth potential of Macebook would be staggering with potential markets in Italy, Spain, Portugal, Germany & France.

Sudden Debt's picture

As long as they pay taxes on the loot!

GeezerGeek's picture

"They won't pay taxes, what should we do?"

If some of them have to return excess wages already paid, will they get a tax credit? Will they get tax refunds even if they didn't pay taxes in the first case?

Imagine if this were tried in the U.S., with all those overpaid government employees. Income tax revenues might even go negative. Nah, Obama relies on government workers (especially unionized ones) for political support. No way he'd allow this sort of clawback.

Terminus C's picture

government employees don't pay income tax.

How can you pay income tax on pay derived from, among other things, income tax.  People don't get it, no government employee should pay income tax (on wages earned from public employment), their pay should be set to whatever level is deemed appropriate for that job (not getting into the public employee remuneration debate here).  The extra cost of administering income tax of all gov't employment is wasteful to say the least.

donsluck's picture

So, let's add more complexity to the tax code, an exclusion for goverment employees. This would mean:

Each government employee would have to do a special calc to determine their tax equivalent pay.

Citizens would complain "they don't even pay taxes!"

How would you account for additional sources of income? Since your wage would not be included in the total, your overall rate would be lower.

Sounds like this would accomplish the opposite of what you're after.

silverbullion's picture

You've got no idea what you're talking/writing about my friend. There are many hard working people in Greece and also a bunch of lazy people, like in most other countries, including the U.S., but to generalize like that and to kick decent people when they're down is criminal. Don't let me develop the same kind of hatred for you that I have developed for the ones that have caused all of this in the first place... those parasites who sit idle by the fire place while hard-working, decent people suffer.

ElvisDog's picture

Really. Didn't 1.5 million (or so) Americans apply for disability payments last year based on "mental conditions"? We are quickly catching up to Greek levels of graft, fraud, and playing the system.

AbruptlyKawaii's picture

lol just tarp was 2x the size of greece gdp, madoff a 1/6th, aig 50%, etc etc  we thin gin.

Dr. Engali's picture

Your avatar is way too small. Even with this big ass eye I can't see it,and that is a shame.

silverbullion's picture

Sorry my friend, but I cannot argue with fools. I apologise for my comment, but that's the truth. It is comments like yours who are designed to destroy honorable brotherly love and true Christian unity.

nope-1004's picture

First you said:

Don't let me develop the same kind of hatred for you that I have developed for the ones that have caused all of this in the first place

Then you said:

comments like yours who are designed to destroy honorable brotherly love and true Christian unity

So is developing hatred toward another Christian?  Oh,,,,, I'm confused.  That's the problem with judging... We're ALL sinners.  So stop blasting someone elses faults when you do exactly the things you despise.

Leopold B. Scotch's picture

Well... Let's be clear, now... If the Greeks were, net-on-net, a productive country, they'd not be saddled under so much debt.  Generalizations be what they may, and many hard working people are suffering, but since the West has slouched into Democracy, the people of Greece have voted for and gotten exactly what they voted for, and now it's come to them good and hard.

The majority allowed for it to happen through their voting. And they define Greece.

The U.S. devolves, and quickly follows suit.

Nice Chart:

**  Nearly Half of American Citizens don't pay any income taxes  **

You get what you vote for.  Government's great when it don't cost nuthin'.... Until the bills for all those free Gyro lunches come due.

matrix2012's picture

Leopold, the holy Democracy that you mentioned is quite abstract, and seems to be ideal only in theory!

i wonder what to choose in case of the USA? with only two sides: the left arm or the right arm... of the same body belongs to the same master???

Do people really have a true choice? The same CAREER representatives who get elected over and over for 2-3 decades or even longer???

Furthermore, people do NOT vote for the Chief candidates directly... the party is doing the filtering!


not to mention about the questionable reliability of Diebold E-Voting machines!

There are simply too many holes inside the Holy DemoCracy you're boasting here. 

Not sure about the Greek case, whether they truly have the choice or not.


Two relevant quotes here:

“When plunder becomes a way of life for a group of men living together in society, they create for themselves, in the course of time, a legal system that authorizes it and a moral code that glorifies it.” — Frédéric Bastiat (1801-1850)


“Western democracies are ossified bastions of self-perpetuating interest groups, aided & abetted & legitimitised by the ritualised spectacle that we call elections” — Unknown Indian author




silverbullion's picture

@nope-1004 You're using my words out of context... if you have any sense you will see that I am 100% for Christian unity, Christian unity in the true sense of the word. It is not a unity that comes at a cost to His Word... there can for example be no peace between so called 'Judeo-Christiany' and true 1st Century primitive Christianity.

I am not judging anyone in the sense that you claim, but are repeating the just judgements of the Most High. I am not using my own personal standards, but that given by the Most High. I am just a servant and not trying to sit in His Throne, like those who falsely claim that we may not judge or repeat His just judgements, those who make up their own rules. If I did that, I would make the kind of judgement that He absolutely hates. Yes, we have all sinned, but that doesn't mean that we have been commanded to embrace sin forever. We are commanded to be perfect, like He is perfect. In one's own power, it is impossible to do that or to please God, but when He enters and we allow Him to do works of power through us, we can indeed be perfected based on the standard of His Word, so that we can join the spirits of just men made perfect when we die the physical death (enter the sleep) here on earth. We however remain in jeopardy until our last days here on earth and can easily fall away by the way side if we allow the Diabolical One to deceive us and steal us away. I hope this makes sense to you... To explain it by using an every day example. When a speed cop writes a fine for speeding, are you going to tell him not to judge? Hell no! You won't, because you know he is a servant of the government and has not made the rules/laws. He is just helping to enforce it, because logic dictates that with the right equipment it is indeed possible to accurately determine whether someone is speeding (or going over the legal speed limit) or not. Now why should it be any different when it comes to God's servants and the just judgements contained in His Word?

I should add: The God of the Bible is a god of absolute hatred and absolute love. One cannot be a follower of Him if you love His enemies and His love is different from the love as defined by the world.

donsluck's picture

You can count me out of your "Christian unity" crap. Who do you think you speak for? ONLY YOURSELF.

silverbullion's picture

@donsluck I am not taking any offense. You have the right to reject what you call our "Christian unity crap". No Christian is going to force you to join us. True Christianity has always been about quality instead of quantity.

Real Estate Geek's picture

I'm betting that there's a pretty high corelation between those apps and those who have exhausted unemployment benefits.

Havana White's picture

ElvisDog... The "mental conditions" you must be talking about, their degree of severity necessary for collecting Social Security disability insurance, and the evidence required to support such a claim can be found by searching "Disability Evaluation Under Social Security 12.00 Mental Disorders - Adult".  Elsewhere on that site you can learn the degrees of severity necessary for disability insurance qualification by those with "conditions" such as cystic fibrosis, chronic anemia, degenerative diseases, lymphomas, epilepsy, lupus, and so on.  Dumb cunt.

StychoKiller's picture

How nice!  Is the website called "Gaming the Social Security system for Dummies?"