The Summer Vacation Is Over - As Papandreou Briefs Greece On Its Sorry State, The Riot Police Returns

Tyler Durden's picture

Just as Greece's G-Pap, who has proven he has more political lives than a cat, is about to speak at the Thessaloniki trade fair with an update on the economy (which is now contracting at more than 5% compared to the -3.8% forecast in May), the country reminds us that summer vacation is over, and that millions of Greeks have returned from their month long vacations only to find that they still are not getting the socialist benefits they thought may, just may, sneak their way back into their paychecks and early retirement plans. To wit, as AP reports, "Riot police fired tear gas Saturday to disperse anti-austerity protesters armed with flare guns, stones and sticks as clashes broke out in Greece's second-largest city. From taxi drivers to sports fans, thousands of angry citizens were protesting in the northern port of Thessaloniki before the prime minister's annual speech on the economy. The protests came in waves Saturday. Several thousand taxi drivers angry over new licensing reforms chanted anti-government slogans as they marched, many throwing plastic water bottles at riot police guarding the trade fair where Papandreou was to speak later. An estimated 1,500 students and anarchists followed on their heels, while other crowds gathered for separate protests by the barely-solvent country's two biggest labor unions. Even fans of Thessaloniki's soccer club Iraklis turned out to protest." Of course, now that even Italy, after one aborted attempt to paint over the issue, is forced to impose some austerity, Europe has a long, long autumn and winter of protesting to look forward to, which coupled with the logical impact on GDP courtesy of everyone's complete lack of interest in working any more (think of the horror at retiring at 65), means that all European economies will soon grind to a halt... Just as has been predited on these pages over a year ago.

From AP:

On Friday, Finance Minister Evangelos Venizelos was forced to deny rumors of impending bankruptcy over the weekend.


The default rumors, combined with the sudden resignation of senior European Central Bank official Juergen Stark, created fresh market fears that sent yields on Greek 10-year bonds surging to 21 percent. Greece has the worst credit rating in the world, just shy of default.


Venizelos insisted Saturday that the country could still pull through.


"Whoever believes that Greece has been broken or has no hope is clearly out of touch with reality," he said. "The two coming months are crucial for the very existence of our country, these are two months whose every day counts as a year in terms of effort."

Funny: a Greek telling others about being "out of touch with reality."

In the meantime, Greece is also telling Europe, which is ready to scuttle bailout #2, to prepare their checkbooks for round #3:

"The clearest message Greece is sending at this point ... is that we are absolutely determined, without taking any momentary political cost into account, to fully meet our obligations to our partners," Venizelos insisted.


But he warned that the economy, in its third year of recession, is shrinking at a faster-than-expected pace, further hampering ambitious efforts to cut the budget deficit to 7.5 percent of gross domestic product this year.


"The forecast in May was a 3.8 percent contraction, and we are currently above 5 percent," he said.

Sorry Veni: this is where Germany says enough.

Greek-speaking readers can watch G-Pap's address at the link below.

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Ahmeexnal's picture

And China flat out states what everyone and their mom know: CHF "peg" won't work.

Time to go long the riot ETF.

slewie the pi-rat's picture

The Silver Bear Cafe

The IMF, Swiss Franc & the War Against Humanity

this is good too!

Ahmeexnal's picture

Today, not a single solitary currency on the face of the world is backed even 1% by gold or silver, as all nations have inflated their currencies to unprecedented levels in the past 50 years.


This is a lie. Venezuela's Bolivar is backed by over 150% gold reserves.

Sudden Debt's picture



And Mexico also still uses silver currency coins.

and actually every county in the world backs it currency by one metal or another. Coins. may it be copper, nickle... it backs up the currency.

 And most laws say: The coins have to have the same value of the metal plus minting costs as the nominal value on the coin.

People seem to forget these things which are remenants of the old gold and silver standards which they forgot to erase.



Fish Gone Bad's picture

Perhaps I am the only person who wonders this, but with the US's sky high debt, why isn't it implementing austerity measures?

john39's picture

in the works...  probably Ron Paul's role, sell it to the public.

Judge Holden's picture

WRONG.  Paul would begin austerity measures by ending the wars/business subsidies, and closing down overseas bases.  TPTB fully support all those programs as they fill their coffers with hundreds of billions.

Nate H's picture

would kill the system instantly - we need growth to pay off prior claims.  austerity kills growth and makes system crash -this type of system doesnt work well in reverse - kind of like those 'dont drive backwards' signs at rental car lots

Arius's picture

isn't the same system in UK and the rest of Europe?

AldousHuxley's picture

austerity = shifting the pain to main street

banksters get bailed out with full bonus -> non-financial elites revolt and tells government they won't pay more taxes -> politicians appease both banksters and non-financial elites by shfting pain to middle class workers with austerity and mass poor are prevented from rioting with credit hand outs


tail of the greed snake is long, but who is at the head?


RockyRacoon's picture

Prezactly.   That is what is explained (along with scenarios for doing something about it) to every incoming President.  That is why there have been no changes to the system.   The Tea Party folk seem to sense the right course of action, but it has been closed to them to implement.  And the system will persist until it can't.   Greece is but a warm up game.  The crash here will be spectacular!

Ahmeexnal's picture

Belarus has no coinage. Only paper. And Visa cards.

Belarus's picture

this is naturally true.

What_Me_Worry's picture

Agreed, its time to go physical USD.  Coinage is even nice enough not to have that dirty Federal Reserve status stamped on it.

SilverDosed's picture

Copper pennies and nickel nickels ftw.

tmosley's picture

Please expound.

They might have gold in that amount (I kind of doubt that), but they certainly can't exchange their fiat currency for it.

DoChenRollingBearing's picture

I second tmosley, Ahmeexnal.

Evidence of Chavez backing his money with gold?  Seems more likely to me that he wants to STEAL the 99 tonnes (whatever) once he gets the gold back in Venezuela, and later gets the heave-ho...

Oro, Putaz!

Ahmeexnal's picture

tmos, DoChen.  Look at the bottom chart on the link below. That was 2008. Buggo has been buying more since then and gold price has doubled.

Might be a good idea to get a Venezuelan girlfriend, just in case.

Updated M0 for Venezuela:

2010:  36339131509.39 VEF  ( )

Using today's exchange rate: 

36,339,131,509.39 VEF = 8,450,960,816.14 USD

Lets round that up to 8.5 billion USD.

And lets round Venezuelas gold reserves to 400 metric tonnes (Dec. 2010 figures show they had 401.1)

That would be 400,000 kg.

At 1900 per ozt that would be....287% backed by gold?? Any math nobel prize winners out there who can check my numbers?


JW n FL's picture



You Sir.. have a Beautiful Mind.

Thank You!

DoChenRollingBearing's picture

Ahmeexnal, I will stipulate that your numbers are OK as well as yor math.  And since I just woke up from my Sat. afternoon nap, I am unwilling to do the fact-checking nor arithmetic either.  So good job.  Posting sources for controversial statements is a good idea.


Valuing OUR gold at say $450 bn (round number) / US M1 (2.1 tn) = 21% (vs. Venezuela's 287%), so there is something to think about in your observation.  (Someone check my math too)

But, Boss Hugo is not going to let that gold sit around and back his currency.  And I saw in your reply further comment that you are measuring gold $ value / Venezuelan M0 (similar to what I just did above).  That is not the same as backing his money with gold.

I also just saw your below note about his ideas for a regional currency (you are correct, it would not work).

pazmaker's picture



The bolivar fuerte is not backed by gold.  Now does Chavez want to create a currency backed by gold..the answer is yes, however the current bolivar fuerte is not.  He has proposed a regional currency called the sucre to be used by the ALBA(Alianza Bolivariana para los Pueblos de Nuestra America) states and be backed by gold and oil.

Ahmeexnal's picture

I was referring to gold reserves to circulating money (M0) ratio.

That would compute to around 287% with the latest data available.

Buggo makes a mistake by trying to emulate a mini EU in southcentral America.

If his common currency comes to light, Nicaragua would become the union's Greece in no time at all.

I'm sure he will scrap that common currency idea when the euro crashes down in flames like the Hinderburg.

Did he not study history? What is he thinking? Gran Colombia failed.

Oh, that's right...he's a soldier.  Wonder who he takes orders from?



pazmaker's picture

I can agree with that. 

disabledvet's picture

you forgot to add "and a happy hyper-inflation to go along with it!"

WmMcK's picture

Remids us to go long Kriptonite - time to re-read: (second article from top, damn tick marks)

the tower's picture

Bullshit. Switzerland was being killed by traders and "investors" looking for a "safe haven" to park their money... The CHF was so rediculously overvalued that the economy was about to tank completely. The Swiss saw this as an attack on their currency and therefore their country, so they counterattacked. Investors lost a lot of money yes, GOOD! Teach you not to bring down a country just because you want to make some money. Did the Swiss citizens lose any savings - as written in the link? No, the Swiss are 100% behind what the SNB did: defend their currency and economy agaist foreign trading attacks!

Ahmeexnal's picture

We now have a Bizarro Switzerland.

Switzerland WAS the definition of "safe haven" to park money. Their banks touted all potential customers those lines.

But when the going gets tough, the Swiss throw their patrons under the bus.

Just stack pre 1968 halves, ones, twos and fivers -and the odd 1969 five too.

WmMcK's picture

 Hemlock, Bitchez.   "drinking poison to end thirst," Classic.

smiler03's picture

I find it almost unbelievable that Greece has come to this...


"many throwing plastic water bottles at riot police "

PulauHantu29's picture

China should know. The Yuan:Dollar peg did not work for them either. The Yuan has appreicated from about 8.6:1 now to alomst 6.0 to 1 USD.

Thanks for your link. Always good to get ideas what The Middle Kingdom thinks.

ManufacturedOpinion's picture

Didn't work ?!!? It probably worked perfectly. Y'all have to remember:  The elites in China are just like the elites in any other country/central bank.

Do you seriously think that any country prints more money to "help its exports" ???  Get real - the elites in the US just rattled off, oh, say, 20 trillion, and GAVE IT TO THEMSELVES !!

China, whilst "pegging its currency to the USD," simply did the same thing:  How many RMB did they print to make the CHF go from 8.6 to 6.0?  And to whom did it go ??

If it didn't go to their elites (in some form or another) I'll eat your boots. 

And, the stoopid Swissies are getting the same treatment.  Pegging to a declining currency is just money printing behind the scenes.  And, like stock splits, if you don't get your fair share of the new currency, you've just been diluted.

So ... does anybody here really think the Swissies did this just to help their economy?


dbTX's picture

The summer vacation is not over in Greece, it never is. Than's the problem. No work, all vacation makes Greece a broke puppy.

CrashisOptimistic's picture


FYI sports fans, Thessaloniki is Greece's only oil import port for all 400K bpd of their consumption.  The refineries are in the north near there, too.  

Gasoline, not oil, is shipped south.  And btw at $114 Brent, they send $16.7 billion this year to the oil exporters.  That's 5% of GDP.

They produce no oil inside Greece.  They did 26K bpd in 1980 and they are past Peak to oblivion now at 2K bpd.

Want to see where the real problem is?  Look at oil.  Always look at oil for everything.  It's 5% of their GDP that flows out of the country.  Their GDP growth is -6% from 2010 Q2.  What a coincidence, eh?


DoChenRollingBearing's picture

Non-sports fan Bearing has his popcorn ready to watch all weekend to see what happens in Europe and how we open Monday.  I am sure it will be one of the most interesting weeks yet.

For financial spectators, we live in wonderful times...  For speculators too.

zuuuueri's picture

your information about greek oil infrastructure is worse than wrong, it's completely misleading. 

There is some import , storage, refining, and products distribution infratructure in thessaloniki. but, there are also three reflneries, large storage farms, import terminals, and product distribution points for truck and tanker ship, in the south as well. In drapetsona/aspropyrgo, elefsina, and megara there are about 250kbpd refining capacity total. in thessaloniki, about 100-some. 

greek oil consumption is absurdly high for the economy and the non-affluence of the country. some of this is because of a particularly miserable set of choices by the state to encourage the use of cars (this is one more great way to turn people into slaves, get them working their whole lives to pay for the car industry) over other forms of transport.. but another factor is that much greek refined product is sold on into the balkans, as well as fuels ships which dont necessarily operate in greek waters all the time. I might suspect that as much as half of the probably 100-120 kbpd refined in the north gets distributed into the other balkan countries. There's not another even half-decent refinery until you get to romania.

by the way greece has the highest petrol taxes in all of europe. combined with the low income of the typical working SOB (even for the public sector parasites, most of their salaries are pretty pathetic too. their biggest 'benefit' is that they can't be fired), owning and fuelling cars is a _huge_ percentage of peoples' income. it's downright insane. 

thankfully a lot of the under-30 people are finally starting to realize that they dont need to have a damned car in order to consider themselves humans. but the previous generation considers it to be the mark of civilization up there with western style clothes, the latest iphones, and flush toilets, to set themselves apart from the other miserably fucked-up balkan post-communist clusterfucks across the border. 

did y'all see the extra 4 euros per square meter of building space that giorgakis and his pals just decided to levy on everyone? that's not just on new soace, thats on every existing building in the country. where do they think people will find the money for this shit?

they already have been trying the past couple decades to ensure that greeks live under bridges or in some kind of cardboard and tin shanties by taxing the living shit out of actually building or buying any kind of dwelling. you want to build a house? okay, you will end up paying about 200-250 euros per square meter in taxes and fees and other government horseshit before you even lay a stone or a brick in place. 

sadly this bullshit will just keep on continuing until the whole freaking system crashes down in a pool of its own shit. 

unfortunately, they are determines to drag us all with them, so we will probably all end up swimming in a pool of their shit. 


LetThemEatRand's picture

I think there's also plenty of blame to go around among the incredibly corrupt oligarchy that profited from lending the Greek government more than it needed (much of which went to the connected banking class and others on top of the food chain), and more than it could afford to pay back.  

Frozen IcQb's picture
Greece could leave eurozone, Flaherty says Minister repeats plea to G7 colleagues: stick to deficit goals outlined in Toronto   By GORDON ISFELD, Postmedia News September 10, 2011   Read more:
Spirit Of Truth's picture

The spoiled rats doth protest that their profligacy is no more...

Hephasteus's picture

Fuck you. Fuck your children. Fuck your ancestors. Fuck everything you've ever been. Fuck everything you'll ever be. Just wanted to give you a never ending story in a thread that's not disrepectful.

Now get "lost".

JW n FL's picture



are you channeling me?

I mean.. you are good too Bro..

Much Luv to You and Yours..

but, if I might just throw something into the mix..

You are a better person than that.. or me.

so be the Good Natured, Well Spoken Soul You are meant to be, it suits you better..

although I am clipping and pasting that lil rant and I full well intend to use it!

so Thanks! in advance!!

Stelan's picture

Nice mouth. Whenever will people understand this type of language is not only disrespectful to others but is a reflection of you and I dare say you would not have the proverbial "olives" to say something like this to a real persons face.

Hephasteus's picture

No. I would rather carve across the top of his skull. Stick my fingers under the face meat and rip his face off.

There are 2 things that are completely true of me.

1. I will not willing hurt another person.

2. I am a very dangerous person. That will hurt you to not just extreme degrees but extreme degrees squared.

I'ts not important who get's what side of the polarity. What's important is that it is acurately broadcasted. The people who should know they are completely and totally safe around me are used as messengers. If they are feeling endangered or threatened in any way than it's an INTENTIONAL miscomunication.

This is how I've learned how full of shit the universe is and how pointless it is to run and process through their machinery. Because they are more interested in lying than in telling the truth. Setting up division when there's none and creating connection when there should be absolutely nothing.

What I said to him is not disrepect. It's so far beyond disrepect and contempt and hatred that you can't even measure it. The world never really ends but it does "end". And it's very important that people gather too them what belongs near them and kick what they don't need out.  Which the system never has acomplished and never will.

My motivations are so high and so good that I'm awarded a Jupiter pass. Any aggressive confrontational signal from me should be softened 50 percent. I've seen it function. And I've seen it fuck up. We involve ourselves more with this long range communications equipment because it allows the "machinery" of this place more of a chance to work.

And you really have no idea how offensive I can be face to face. Or how kind of considerate I can be. Depending on which is apprporiate.

oldman's picture

I have complete respect for rage---I congratulate you for being human. Good luck-----we need you, so be a teeny bit careful also. 

Thanks for the inspiration, Hep                        om

Richard Head's picture

Wow! I can tell by your anonymous post that you are tough, and scary!  Everyone watch out for "Hephasteus!"

ManufacturedOpinion's picture

You stupid fuck. I used to know another stupid fuck (just like you) that would always talk about "the demon" that lived inside of him.

He would use that stupid line every time he threw a temper tantrum, and people (especially his family) would give him lots of space when he lost his mind like that.

He would talk very tough and mention that "the demon" had no morals, scruples nor conscience.  Then he would threaten everybody in sight.  Later he would talk about "the demon" (and always in the third person, mind you) with great reverence - even fear.

As if he HIMSELF feared "what he could do" if "the demon got out."

Well ... he was just a mental midget that couldn't handle the world on its own terms.  So he had to invent stupid shit and throw it at people.

Those of us that had to put up with his childish bullshit would just laugh at his idiocy.

Kind of like we here at ZeroHedge are doing with YOU.

Ciao, stupid fuck.

Hephasteus's picture

I'm not threatening everybody in sight. I'm tagging fuck faces gang.

You know a guy like that. Sorry lots of people know george bush and dick cheney.

But my point remains. Nothing is forever and you can always create a situation where there's absolutely no fucking way forward. An ending that can't be denied, neglected or miscontrued.

Fuh Querada's picture

Greek taxi licenses and other closed shops in Greece

...“It’s a Soviet-style economy without the benefits of the coordination and planning,” Yannis Stournaras, director general of the Foundation for Economic and Industrial Research in Athens

Ahmeexnal's picture

When Greece implodes (in days/weeks), they will go back to the City States.

cossack55's picture

Much better system. If you lived in a fucked up state (Ill, CA, NY), move next door.