Going Greek

via medexpressrx.com

via medexpressrx.com

They say we’re only three days away from a civil war after the supermarket shelves are empty.

In a way, that’s what’s happening in Greece, except it’s medicines that are running out.

The Guardian reports:

Greece is facing a serious shortage of medicines amid claims that pharmaceutical multinationals have halted shipments to the country because of the economic crisis and concerns that the drugs will be exported by middlemen because prices are higher in other European countries.  

Hundreds of drugs are in short supply and the situation is getting worse, according to the Greek drug regulator. The government has drawn up a list of more than 50 pharmaceutical companies it accuses of halting or planning to halt supplies because of low prices in the country.

Ouch.  Even as a country, if you don’t pay your bills, eventually your supplier will stop sending you stuff.

More than 200 medicinal products are affected, including treatments for arthritis, hepatitis C and hypertension, cholesterol-lowering agents, antipsychotics, antibiotics, anaesthetics and immunomodulators used to treat bowel disease.

Those nasty multi-national drug companies.  What bastards.

The Red Cross wouldn’t do something like that.

Separately, it was announced on Tuesday that the Swiss Red Cross was slashing its supply of donor blood to Greece because it had not paid its bills on time.


“Companies are ceasing these supplies because Greece is not profitable for them and they are worried that their products will be exported by traders to other richer countries through parallel trade as Greece has the lowest medicine prices in Europe,” said Professor Yannis Tountas, the president of the Greek drug regulator, the National Organisation for Medicines.

Oh dear.  Not paying its bills and selling their own suppliers’ drugs cheaper elsewhere undercutting their supplier in other markets.

How could that possibly go wrong?


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  • In Vino Veritas

    Supposedly they have been making big Government expenditure cuts in line with their bailout conditions, but debt to GDP has ballooned to over 170% now, and is expected to get to a staggering 190% this year. Let this be a warning to those thinking of voting for socialists in future.

    In terms of asset sales, up until Dec 2012, only 1.6bn euros had been raised. Athens officials went to what they supposed was a pristine patch of beach on the Ionian sea to scope it for sale. Only to find a whole village that they did not know about (7,000 homes) had sprung up. Needless to say, it was crossed off the list for privatisation since they couldnt bring themselves to send a bulldozer in!

    • blazer

      get them in debt up to the eyeballs and then move to confiscate hard assets…sounds like loan sharking.

      • In Vino Veritas

        So blazer, a good chunk which is owed to French banks (9bn euro) German banks (8bn) and Belgian banks (4bn), means they are loans sharks does it? Greeces socialist politicians knew exactly what it was doing, buying election after election by making promises with other peoples money. Banks have a reasonable expectation that sovereign debt is low risk, particularly to an EU member. I’d remind you that the Greek government has only managed to own the “hard assets” you talk about by borrowing from banks. Socialism blazer, is great, unitl you run out of other peoples money.

        • blazer

          marvellous that those ‘other’ people merely print it and lend it at interest to those that do not!As you have been informed ,Greek debt blew out compliments of fiscal chicanery by Goldman Sachs to disguise the total debt.Mr B makes a valid point.NZ’s indebtedness is of greek proportions.

          • In Vino Veritas

            blazer, any “chicanery” by Goldmans would never have occurred without the complicity of the socialists form 2000 – 2004. They didn’t have to run with it, did they blazer? But then, they would have been sprung there and then. NZ government debt is only around 40% of GDP, nowhere near Greece’s 170%.

          • blazer

            cant get the ‘paste’ …corp and govt debt is 121% of GDP as at last year.

            Last updated 21 December 2012–

          • In Vino Veritas

            blazer, I’m comparing apples with apples. Government debt of Greece, with Government debt of NZ. You are comparing NZ’s total debt (Corporate and Government) to Greece’s Government debt.

          • cows4me

            No one is forcing you to take their forty pieces of sliver Blazer. Sooner or later the wolf will come knocking on the door. No one forced the Greeks to work 35 hours a week, no one forced them to take excessive pension schemes, no one forced them not to pay their taxes.

          • blazer

            is the drought affecting you cows?I see farmers are needing handouts to get through.

          • cows4me

            sorry to disappoint you blazer, you’re not supporting me yet.

          • blazer

            I know you dont like socialist,welfare policies,but it appears from news items many farmers are requiring government assistance to help their private business.

          • napalm in the mornin

            No one will force farmers to take a bailout, due to effect of drought, havent built up a buffer from all the good seasons. one hiccup in the system and oops

          • Guido Lagis

            does your media offer options or opinions?

            they’ve been brainwashed since the junta was taken down by the cia in ’73.

            Watch seven sharp to learn how & what you are now supposed to think in this ‘new world’…

        • Mr_Blobby

          You seem a little bit confused In Vino perhaps this will help.

          World Collapse Explained in 3 Minutes

          • In Vino Veritas

            Thanks Blobby – I’ve seen it before, but doesnt make it any less funny!

    • blokeintakapuna

      haha – yep – that sounds about right.
      Supposedly, when Germany & France were trying to work out some emergency funding for Greece, part of the info they wanted was just how large the public service was? How many departments? How many employees?
      They still can’t answer the question…

  • This is what happens when people vote for governments who give them stuff that they don’t actually pay for. But the people will always vote for anyone who promises more of the same.

    • thor42

      Yep – spot-on, Brian! The bill ALWAYS comes along sooner or later. They’re finding that out now.

      Labour, Greens, Mana, Maori, Winston supporters, take note.

  • PlanetOrphan

    They should never have gone to the euro, wouldn’t be probelm selling anything externally if they didn’t … Bloody Exchange Rates M8!

  • mick le prick

    Maybe DR Normoron should go and help Greece crank up the printing presses then problem solved lol

  • Mr_Blobby

    All very interesting, but don’t be distracted. How much is the National Government borrowing each week per household to fund our current lifestyle.

    We are fast following in the steps of the EU Piigs.

  • cows4me

    This can’t be right, everyone knows socialism is the answer, the drug companies should get with the program and share the wealth. Seriously though this is what happens when fantasy politics meet the real world, enjoy Greece, you’ve earned it.

  • jono

    what does anal sex have to do with this ?

  • napalm in the mornin

    Story on internet that Greek Parliament has hired Academi/Blackrock, if this is true and its getting that bad , wont be long before shit hits the fan and Spain, Italy follow

  • Guido Lagis

    You know not of what you speak. Prepare for rebirth of democracy. (‘spare’ cash into gold people)