Germany

Face of the day

Australia's Political commentator Andrew Bolt

Australia’s Political commentator Andrew Bolt

Today’s face of the day, Australian Political commentator Andrew Bolt, has this to say about the current Refugee crisis.

Almost all the media commentary on the invasion of Europe so far overlooks a critical point.

The illegal immigrants in no way are “refugees”. Even those fleeing, say, Syria, were in relative safety once they’d crossed the border into Turkey, which, incidentally, is a country sharing the Muslim faith of most Syrians.

But since then, the immigrants have moved to Greece, then Macedonia and then Serbia to reach Hungary. Even then the vast majority want to move on – through Austria or the Czech Republic to their ultimate goal, Germany, the richest of all the countries on this trek.

I don’t blame them, of course, but nor do I blame Germany for saying it does not have a responsibility to accept these hundreds of thousands of people crossing its borders.

 

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Kraut pushback against doing deal to help dodgy socialist Greek ratbags

Angela Merkel is in a spot of bother for daring to entertain bailing out the dodgy, socialist Greek ratbags for a third time.

Germany’s ruling coalition appears to be deeply split over Greece’s latest reform proposals ahead of a climactic meeting of EU leaders at the weekend.

While senior Social Democrats (SPD), the junior partners in Chancellor Angela Merkel’s government, welcomed the list of concessions from the Greek prime minister, Alexis Tsipras, members of her own conservative bloc were scathing about Greece’s position.

As financial experts digested the plan from Athens, the joint chief executive of Berlin’s stock exchange, Artur Fischer, said that business leaders in Germany felt Greece had squandered its credibility, and that if Merkel agreed to a third bailout for Greece, she could also be signing up to the continuation of the crisis for years to come, thereby risking her chancellorship.

“This is the toughest time in her chancellorship so far. Can she resist the voices of opposition within her own party to push through a third bailout in the Bundestag that most of them are against?” said Fischer.

Poor old Chris Trotter, he is back on his Greek delusions

Dear old Chris Trotter, he is back making up wistful stories about the demise of the socialist ratbags in Greece, who seem to believe they can have a free ride paid for by other hard working people like the Krauts.

He thinks there are three groups commenting on the Greek crisis, the first group is the largest and are those who simply don’t care.

Then there are people like me, and most readers of this site who he describes like this:

Then there’s the group that regards the unfolding Greek crisis as a simple morality tale. According to this view, the Greeks awarded themselves a lifestyle they had not earned and paid for it with other people’s money. When the music stopped and their creditors came a-calling, the Greeks were required to discover just how unpleasant life can become when excessive debt falls due. As far as this group is concerned, the Greeks are in the process of being taught some very valuable lessons. On no account, therefore, should the EU be encouraged to remove its knife from Greece’s throat.

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Chris Trotter’s politically incoherent rant about Greece

Chris Trotter can usually be relied on to give a sensible opinion on most political matters, though occasionally he loses himself in an orgy of self congratulation when it appears someone can claim “Capitalism doesn’t Work”.

Chris’ delusions about capitalism and the Greek Crisis have come to a head with a piece where he welcomes the bludging Greek ratbags voting not to pay their debts.

He usually gets the diagnosis right, but doesn’t always get the treatment right.

THE UNFOLDING CRISIS in Greece has stripped Neoliberalism of its protective disguise and the world is recoiling from its ugliness. In normal circumstances the true purposes of the world’s neoliberal elites are masked by their use of opaque economic jargon. In the case of Greece, however, the social science of economics has been turned against them by some of its most impressive exponents. Nobel laureates Joseph Stiglitz and Paul Krugman have told the world that what is being done to Greece has nothing to do with economics, and everything to do with politics. A whole country is being driven to the wall in a desperate bid to destroy its left-wing government. Neoliberalism simply cannot allow the Greek Prime Minister’s, Alexis Tsipras’s, powerful lessons in democracy to go unpunished. If his Syriza Party is allowed to defeat austerity in Greece, what is there to prevent Podemos from defeating it in Spain? Or Sinn Fein in Ireland?

Yes Chris, it is all to do with politics, although those from the Austrian or Chicago schools of economics might disagree with well known left-wingers and Keynsians, Stigliz and Krugman. The politics is pretty easy to understand, especially if you take a step back from the ideology of a looney left Greek government who says “We won’t pay you”.

Germany’s 72-year-old Finance Minister, Wolfgang Schauble, has clearly been unable to cope with his 54-year-old Greek counterpart, Yanis Varoufakis. Everything about the free-wheeling Greek economics professor offends the unyielding German ideologue. Varoufakis has been unsparing in his criticism of Germany’s inability to grasp the necessity for Greek debt relief (which even the IMF now acknowledges). It’s an act of insubordination which Schauble and his colleagues are resolutely determined to punish. So unchallenged has neoliberalism’s ideological hegemony been since the collapse of Soviet-style socialism that it finds itself unable to adequately respond to Varoufakis’s neo-Keynesian populist critiques. Their greatest fear is that, like the little boy in the Hans Christian Andersen fairy tale, the Greek Finance Minister will draw the world’s attention to the fact that the neoliberal German Emperor is wearing no clothes.  Read more »

The square heads are getting sick of dodgy Greek ratbags

Time is up for Greece, and the Krauts are utterly sick of them.

Berlin has delivered a blistering attack on Greece’s beleaguered radical prime minister, Alexis Tsipras, accusing him of lying to his own people and seeking scapegoats for the country’s misery everywhere but in his own ranks.

The German government dismissed desperate attempts by Athens to salvage some form of bailout, prompting Tsipras to hit back, accusing the country’s creditors of trying to “blackmail” Greek voters with dire warnings that a vote against austerity in this weekend’s referendum would be a vote to leave the euro.

Tsipras referred to leaders of other eurozone nations as “extremist conservative forces” and blamed them for the capital controls that have forced the banks to shut down and ration cash.   Read more »

Krauts call time on Olive monkeys

The Krauts have had a guts full of Greek whinging and are calling time on their economic intransigence.

Greece was on the brink of economic meltdown as Germany looked poised to push the country out of the eurozone.

With Greece about to default on a 1.5 billion ($2.4 billion) debt repayment, senior German politicians warned “enough is enough”. The Greek debt negotiations collapsed after just 45 minutes, amid fears Athens is now heading towards financial catastrophe.

Despite condemnation from European leaders following the breakup of the talks, Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras, said: “We will patiently wait until creditors turn to realism.” He claimed the talks collapsed because European creditors wanted to slash Greek pensions and workers’ wages. Tsipras’ claims were immediately rejected by the European Commission. Guenther Oettinger, Germany’s EU Commissioner, said Europe should brace itself for a “state of emergency” in Greece from July 1 if Athens did not reach an agreement with its creditors. Sigmar Gabriel, the head of Germany’s Social Democrats, said time was running out for Tsipras’ Government. “Everywhere in Europe, the sentiment is growing that enough is enough.”

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I bet Tony Abbott is pissed off he didn’t think of this

Tony Abbott is going to be seriously annoyed with David Cameron.

Cameron has come up with a really good idea for dealing with illegal immigrants.

Foreign workers will have their wages seized by police and face deportation without appeal if they are in the UK illegally, David Cameron will announce today as part of a “radical” crackdown on immigration.

The Prime Minister will vow to make the UK a “less attractive place to come and work” by using next week’s Queen’s Speech to announce a series of laws to “root out illegal immigrants and bolster deportations”.

Mr Cameron will also unveil plans to make it a criminal offence for businesses to recruit abroad without advertising in the UK first.

He will give councils powers to evict migrants and force all banks to check bank accounts against databases of people who could be in the country illegally.

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Photo Of The Day

A Hitler

Fuhrer My Eyes Only!

Adolf Hitler despised this ‘undignified’ picture of him in short trousers.

In Lederhosen (The Tracht Lederhose is the fashion item for every gent. The short Lederhosen made of buckskin or suede is the main component of the Bavarian Tracht) and knee-high socks, Adolf Hitler lounges against a tree in a pose more twit than tyrant.

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Photo Of The Day

Photographer: Pvt. Ralph Forney. (Army)  This photo has been colourized.

Photographer: Pvt. Ralph Forney. (Army)
This photo has been colourized.

Concentration Camp Inmate

Breaks Out in Tears in Wöbbelin

4th of May 1945

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I suppose that is one way to try and avoid paying back your enormous debt

The Greeks are trying it on with a massive claim against Germany for war reparations in a blatant attempt to avoid paying back their enormous debt and bail out funds.

Greece has demanded nearly €279bn in reparations from Germany, more than the value of its current bail-out, as the cash-strapped country continues to pursue compensation for crimes carried out by the Third Reich.

A parliamentary committee established by Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras put an official number on the claim, which includes the cost of a forced Nazi loan made by the Bank of Greece and the return of archaeological treasures.

Greece suffered a brutal occupation at the hands of the Third Reich in 1941, with over 40,000 people starving to death in Athens alone.

Previous Greek calculations for the cost of the country’s occupation have stood at around €160bn. The revised figures however amount to nearly 10pc of Germany’s GDP.    Read more »