If only the Greeks were as passionate about maintaining the debt of their economy at a reasonably insane level, as opposed to the "full retard" reserved for banana republics such as the UK and the US, as they are about striking when it comes to preserving their entitlements, Europe would have a budget surplus of several quintillion. Today, and tomorrow, and likely everyday thereafter, Greece will be shut down as billions in (non-taxable) economic output is eliminated, trade is shuttered, and the tourism industry is dead. And since hospitals are also on strike, tourism may be the least of the casualties. Bloomberg reports: "Greek government workers shut down schools and hospitals and disrupted flights as demonstrators occupied the Acropolis in an escalation of protests against 30 billion euros ($40 billion) of additional wage cuts and tax increases unveiled this week." And no, there is no hope: "“Protests will increase,” said Spyros Papaspyros, the head of ADEDY. “Opting for the easy path of cutting wages and pensions can’t be accepted.” In essence, the Greek people would rather see their country bankrupt, the EMU destroyed and their nation locked out of the funding market for the next decade than have to retired at age 63. But at least they gave us democracy.... The same democracy that will see the Supreme Court soon side with the Federal Reserve over 300+ million US citizens.
More from Bloomberg:
The ADEDY union federation, which represents more than 500,000 civil servants having their pensions and pay slashed under measures announced May 2 by Prime Minister George Papandreou, will hold a rally at midday joined by striking teachers. A general strike, the third this year, is planned for tomorrow, with private-sector workers due to participate.
Protesters from the Communist Party of Greece draped banners over the walls of the ancient Acropolis citadel in Athens today that said “Peoples of Europe Rise Up” in Greek and English, as tourists took photographs. Unemployed teachers yesterday disrupted the evening news show on state-run NET TV.
Government spokesman George Petalotis condemned the occupation of the Acropolis, saying on NET TV that such protests “aimed to destroy tourism to Greece by terrorizing foreign visitors.”
“My trip is complete,” said Roger Smith from the U.S. as he took photos of the protests below the Acropolis. Smith, on his first visit to Greece with his wife, Diane, said rich Greeks, like rich Americans, needed to pay their taxes.
Fifty-one percent of Greeks say they won’t accept new austerity measures and would join protests against them, according to a poll of 1,000 people by ALCO for Proto Thema newspaper. That compared with 33 percent who would accept them. No margin of error was given for the poll, which was conducted from April 27 to April 29.
Most Greeks feel anger and dismay rather than relief over Papandreou’s decision to request emergency loans, a separate survey showed. Just 14.8 percent of the 1,256 people polled by Kappa Research April 28-29 for To Vima newspaper felt relief or hope after the move, compared with 31 percent who answered “anger,” 30.6 percent “disappointment or fear” and 22.8 percent who said they felt “shame.” The margin of error for the poll was 2.6 percentage points.
TS Eliot was wrong. For Europe, May is about to prove the cruelest month by far. Should there be no change to the status quo, we anticipate the disintegration of the monetary union in the very near future. And the more Spain refuses to acknowledge that it has requested a several hundred billion dollar bail out, the more we are convinced our assumption is correct.