14 Comments

  • Once again I admire the opportunity that some hosts of Radio shows in USA give to you Yanis to explain your views, but moreover the excellent questions that they ask you enabling you to give a thorough description of your analysis and the modest proposal. And once again, comparing this with the hosting you get on the media shows here in Greece makes me wanna cry!

  • I like Yanis’ clear and convincing thiinking. One thing I am not so sure about though is the degree of depreciation expected of a new drachma. Why should one feel such a pressure to convert drachmas into euros if the interest rate exceeds the inflation rate?

    • Because it won’t. If the euro remains legal tender, everyone will be expecting the drachma to depreciate viz the euro. Then each will try to convert drachmas into euros and, thus, the drachma will depreciate at a rate much, much larger than the interest rate. QED

  • Just a suggestion Yanis, when I clicked on the link, a shit load of YOU WON advertisement popped up and only by killing Safari I could get rid of it, and the download itself is extremely sluggish – 25 kb/sec at the moment – at least for me here.

    Perhaps you could post pure audio on Soundcloud instead? Does not cost a penny and is sufficient. For video, I would suggest Vimeo.

  • The way you explain the aspect of surplus recycling is an eye opener for a non economist like myself. In my guts, I knew this to be the case, I would not be able to express it that concise. Thank you!

    In my own worlds, the well known, the built in gap between export weak and export strong countries, together with the not so astonishing fact that USA and Europe at the same time, within a few weeks really, have changed their accounting system, in the USA they changed to SNA and in Europe the Maastricht treaties were introduced, linking sovereign debts to GDP, is a essential contributor to the mess unfolding now.

  • ….in addition, soundcloud would give you a way to post an uncut, unedited version as well, as long as you have it that is of course. 🙂

  • One more comment.

    I share you psychoanalysis of the history concerning the reaction of political forces.

    I would like to add something to the picture. Alexander Dibelius (GS) is ‘consulting’ the German government behind the curtains of the public stage, so is Peter Sutherland (GS) in Ireland, what I mean to say is that there are forces at play here that simply outperform the political class and utilize certain instruments of blackmail to push their agenda.

    I believe, no scientific evidence here either, this is happening in every European country up to the EU Levels of Consilium, Parliament and Commission, it is the expression of lobbyism on a rampage, in control of decisions taken in Europe.

  • Thanks for the very thurough explanation. Even me, who doesn’t understand economics, understood what you said well. You’re better than the stupid BBC newscasters!

  • Heard the audio and learned. Thank you.

    comment:

    I was surprised that you think that the only problem with the wider civil service sector is efficiency and not excess personnel ( you said civil servants are not too many someplace, are comparable to France etc). I have seen a plot where our civil sector together with Portugal is high up. I would appreciate a link to comparative statistics within EU.

    I spent my working life as a civil servant in a research institute and know from experience and observation of other disciplines that there are supernumerary people in all civil service posts, and the dictum “work expands to fill the time available” should be expanded to ” and people available”. This is what has created the enormous bureaucracy, to give people something to do shuffling papers around from office to office. In addition the destruction of hierarchy in the ’80ies has landed us now with a lot of generals and the need for even more civil servants, since generals do not dirty their hands with low level jobs.

    Increasing efficiency and restoring hierarchy will make half of civil servants redundant.
    Then and there there would be a surplus in the budget.

    I appreciate that the laxity in decisions over two generations where the average salaries of civil servants were increased by successive strikes and blackmails to 150% of the private sector, cannot be magically reversed without a severe shock to the economy. Still it is a goal that one should aim at, a trim and efficient civil sector, clear hierarchy and job descriptions. Just the lowering of the salaries would stop making a job in the civil service the aim all and end all of all those university graduates.

    • I have no doubt that there are idle people in the Greek public sector. Yet there is so much that the Greek state is not doing for its citizens that other states provide as a matter of course. Getting the idle to generate those services is the task. Not to turn them out into the street and into a collapsing private sector.

  • Regarding the redirecting of civil servants from idle to useful posts:
    I’m afraid that turning janitors and simple clerks into doctors and nurses and social workers and health inspectors and teachers and business experts would prove an impossible task. For, sadly, most surplus civil servants are in paper – pushing jobs, at the most, whereas the services that the state should provide are in serious need of qualified personnel.
    There’s only so much reshuffling that can be done.

    • I beg to differ. The problem of the Greek civil sector is not that its staff is beyond training or underqualified. It is rather that, once inducted into the civil service, the dinsincentives to do good deeds, to keep up with one’s training and education, to become and stay productive, are gigantic.