Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Underground reports exposing IMF and Greek Plutocrats

If you want to know the most important news about the Greek financial collapse you won't find it in the traditional commercial media. They follow almost exactly the same pattern of behavior, although they find many ways of saying the same things without mentioning many of the most important facts.

Fortunately there are alternative media outlets available for people, that aren't keeping their heads in the sand, that do a much better job reporting the news.

This should be important to everyone including those in other parts of Europe like Italy, Spain, Portugal, Ireland and the United States as well as many third world countries that have already learned some of the lessons Greece is now learning. And many of those that are waking up are starting to check alternative media outlets to find the truth, instead of trusting the traditional media.

The simple explanation for a lot of the problems we face that you never hear from the commercial media is that people with jobs that are at least partially designed to shift wealth from the majority to those that control powerful institutions get paid much better than those that do work that improves the quality of life for the majority; and most if not all of them have almost certainly been getting raises above the rate of inflation while working people have seen their wages decline.

In other words centralized corporate bureaucracy is skyrocketing as much as centralized Soviet bureaucracy did before their collapse.

Advertisers, lobbyists, economists, union busters, lawyers, pundits, consultants and many other jobs that make the rich richer at the expense of the rest of us all pay much better and they're only available to people from the ruling class or those that go along with the program to create the appearance of upward mobility for some that escape from poverty.

Ironically these jobs aren't subject to the "free market" system, as the media and economists keep telling us.

When was the last time you hired an economist, advertiser, union buster or lobbyist.


Wrong, sort of; when you buy from oligarchies you provide funds to indirectly hire all these people who work against your interests in a system that has consolidated to a relatively small number of multinational corporations that all follow the same pattern of behavior an no longer pass on the benefits of competition, even though this is used to reduce wages.

Fortunately there are a few exceptions like Juliet Schor or Yanis Varoufakis but they don't make nearly as much money as those with incentive to deceive the public and the public often doesn't pay attention to them until things get so bad that tehy start to wake up and seek alternative news.

These things are easy to figure out or confirm as long as people don't rely solely on the commercial media for their information; and so is the real news about Greece and the corruption of the IMF and commercial media as long as people sort through the right alternative media outlets.

The following are just a sample of the more reliable stories that aren't being covered by traditional media that expose some of the corrupt activities, and there are also plenty of books that go into more detail, although the media doesn't promote those either, starting with one that exposes how they train the media to spread propaganda.

IMF 'Trained' Greek Journalists in DC to Promote Its Position in the Media 06/19/2015

Greece's former representative to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) said that Greek journalists were "trained" to promote the policies the IMF and the European Commission had toward the country's debt.

Panagiotis Roumeliotis, speaking in front of the special parliamentary committee on Greek debt, testified:

"The IMF trained" Greek journalists so that "Greek journalists can promote the positions of the IMF and the European Commission in Greek media."

Roumeliotis said when he was in Washington he accidentally bumped into Greek journalists who told him that they were attending IMF seminars. According to him, many of the journalists bought into the IMF's misinformation campaign, ultimately omitting in their news reports that the debt was not sustainable.

Several economists and university professors also tried to convince the public that the debt was sustainable, Roumeliotis said. Complete article

Their debt was part of predatory lending practices that include requiring privatization of government services among other things. While some reports say that the IMF loans are low interest they also require multinationals to take over industries with deals that are as predatory as high interest loans, or loan sharking. This includes banks, which in some countries have been controlled by the government previously and may have provided better services to their people before they were privatized. This might mean that even though some of the IMF loans are low interest by allowing banks to be privatized or eliminating usury laws for banks that have already been privatized, the IMF may be enabling what should be called loansharking. Also the traditional media doesn't provide much if any information on how well regulated banks or nationalized banks provided services compared to private banks but this article provides more reliable information as far as it goes.

EuroZone Profiteers: How German and French Banks Helped Bankrupt Greece 06/30/2015

Alexis Tsipras, the prime minister of Greece, has called a national referendum this Sunday to call the bluff of the European Union and International Monetary Fund who are trying to force his country to accept severe austerity in return for effectively rolling over much of the countries’ debt.

Today Greece owes its creditors €323 billion ($366 billion), some 175 percent of the country’s gross domestic product. How did it end up owing so much money?

“We should be clear: almost none of the huge amount of money loaned to Greece has actually gone there,” Joseph Stiglitz, former chief economist of the World Bank and a Nobel Prize winner in economics, wrote in the Guardian newspaper today. “It has gone to pay out private-sector creditors – including German and French banks.”

A recent CorpWatch report - The EuroZone Profiteers - can help shed further light on this matter. While it’s true that corrupt Greek politicians borrowed billions for shaky government schemes from these banks, there was a very good reason that the financiers made these rash loans: they were under pressure from European Union bureaucrats to compete in a global marketplace with U.K. and U.S. banks. Complete article

Some of the tactics are the same as those used in Latin America as well as other parts of the world; and a closer look at Latin America indicates that although they haven't completely reversed the process they have waken up and begun to stand up to the IMF. This information is available through a variety of sources and this particular article describes some of the tactics used by the IMF, comparing it to mafia tactics, with justification, perhaps the IMF should be considered a government sanctioned loansharking operation.

Greece – What You are not Being Told by the Media 07/05/2015

According to mainstream media, the current economic crisis in Greece is due to the government spending too much money on its people that it went broke. This claim however, is a lie. It was the banks that wrecked the country so oligarchs and international corporations could benefit.

Every single mainstream media has the following narrative for the economic crisis in Greece: the government spent too much money and went broke; the generous banks gave them money, but Greece still can’t pay the bills because it mismanaged the money that was given. It sounds quite reasonable, right?

Except that it is a big fat lie … not only about Greece, but about other European countries such as Spain, Portugal, Italy and Ireland who are all experiencing various degrees of austerity. It was also the same big, fat lie that was used by banks and corporations to exploit many Latin American, Asian and African countries for many decades.

Greece did not fail on its own. It was made to fail.

In summary, the banks wrecked the Greek government and deliberately pushed it into unsustainable debt so that oligarchs and international corporations can profit from the ensuing chaos and misery. Complete article

As I said previously Yanis Varoufakis appears to be one of the few economists that do a good job representing the public instead of corporations; however I suspect that he might have been able to do a better job if he hadn't resigned. But even though he did resign he is speaking out and according to the following article he hints that he might have been forced out and he is speaking out more. Perhaps this will help wake people up and stir them to action; especially since they appear to be trying to impose a slightly lighter version of Austerity, without acknowledging the deceptive tactics used by IMF, media, banks and other large corporations.

Greek Ex-Finance Minister: Media Is Guilty Of “Terrorism”, Elite Think Democracy Is Irrelevant 07/08/2015

On Sunday, as we reported here, the Greek people voted NO to more loans and increased austerity measures by the ECB and IMF. It was a historic referendum result that revived that old-fashioned idea of democracy in a Europe now controlled by shady financial institutions and faceless international creditors. Winning a NO vote was an enormous victory for Greece’s ruling party Syriza, and yet shortly after the result, Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis resigned (full story here). He had hinted that anonymous, powerful people had forced him out of his job, and in this video Varoufakis makes some more comments that should make all of us feel quite nervous about the future of our political and economic systems.

In this June interview with UK Channel 4’s economy correspondent Paul Mason, Varoufakis explains exactly why he fought for a NO vote and how unfair and irrational the creditors have been in refusing to discuss debt re-structuring. As Varoufakis points out, it is perfectly normal in the world of finance for us to be offered long term loans that suit our budget. It happens every day, yet Greece has not been offered a sustainable debt repayment plan that will enable it to pay back its creditors with interest, without forcing people at home to suffer as they do right now. If Greece has no money left, then how can it possibly pay what the IMF and the ECB expect it to? Varoufakis had suggested that his country pay an increased sum of money back over a longer time period, enabling the economy to grow over time. The creditors refused. When Prime Minister Tspiras announced a referendum would take place, the creditors were absolutely furious. Democracy is not something they understand, it seems.

Upon announcing the vote, Greek banks were closed for one week, something which Varoufakis claims “can only be explained as a ploy by the Eurogroup in order to blackmail this government into signing an un-viable agreement.” As journalist Paul Mason gets increasingly hot under the collar at all this radical talk, Varoufakis is calm as a cucumber. “The banks closed because the Eurogroup wanted to deny the Greek people the opportunity to deliver their verdict on the institutions’ offer,” he repeats.

Varoufakis points out that despite the blackmail and people being unable to withdraw their own funds, the country has not seen a single incident of violence. “We were very worried about awful episodes outside banks; we had none,” says the economist-turned-politician.

He also blasts mainstream media when Mason tells him how scared people are of an economic collapse. “I can understand the terror,” Varoufakis begins. “If you look at what the media is blasting out it is natural that people get scared. Its a kind of media-based terrorism that is casting a shadow over people’s daily lives, especially those in business.” For once, Mason has no response.

But the most interesting comment in this interview has to be what Varoufakis says about his government’s decision to hold last Sunday’s referendum (at 10:32). Speaking about his belief in democracy, Varoufakis drops information about the real face of the European Union, and the changing landscape of public participation in our own domestic affairs. He says that by calling a referendum, “I have entrusted the Greek people in a way that has incensed my colleagues in the Eurogroup who don’t believe that such complex matters- I have been told- should be put to common folk.” Complete article

Another major possibility the IMF and multinational corporations might not want the public to consider is that the threat to force Greece into exiting the European Union might be at least partially a bluff!

A Greek exit or Grexit as it is being called could cause as much if not more problems for the multinationals than it does for Greece. What if they also had to force Italy, Spain, Portugal and Ireland among other countries from the European Union all at the same time? It would cause a total collapse of the union eventually if not immediately. This is why they can't possibly try to force them all out at once and might have negotiated deals so this wouldn't happen. But even if they force Greek out then they have to know that the next country will be defaulting soon, unless they're total ideological fanatics. Then a Grexit might only delay the inevitable, and they have to at least suspect this.

If those of us who will be sinking next join those that are sinking now then the oligarchies will have to stop stealing and may even have to give back their loot!

If the people of Greece along with other European countries and even the United States realize this then they can demand real reform and they would have the leverage to get it at least to some degree but only if they rely on alternative media outlets, at least until we have major media reform allowing for much more diverse views and less corporate censorship.

Many Latin American countries have already demonstrated that they can take major steps in the right direction if they stand up to multinationals and at least partially reverse the damage done by them. If grassroots efforts around the world join them then we can have major reform and hold the oligarchies accountable and force them to pay back what they stole!

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