Much has been written on the sovereign Greek debt problem, but very little has had substance and analytical rigour. The dominant view has been that the Greek debt is the creation of a clientelistic political system that has historically resulted in a bloated and inefficient public sector, unable to collect taxes. This is not a serious view.
The Greek debt has domestic and external sources. High defence spending, tax evasion chiefly by the comprador-cum-financial oligarchy and the ship-owning elites, and a large but inefficient public sector constitute the main domestic sources of the Greek debt. Ship-owners navigate their vessels with flags of convenience (so no tax is paid to the Greek state); the comprador financier has his/her company registered in tax havens (so, again, no income for the Greek state); the defence spending is at times becoming as high as four percent of GDP due to an exaggerated threat invoked by the ruling political elites and which is assumedly posed by
Historically, and because of its dependent/subaltern position in the global economic and political structures, the Greek economy lacks a robust industrial sector. This has had two significant consequences. First, the state and the ruling party elites used every method possible (clientelistic practices, patrimonialism, corrupt deals etc.) to bloat the public sector via recruitment and favouritism in order to secure re-election. All these phenomena have been employed as strategic options by the ruling classes in order to reproduce and secure their power; they have not been the free choice of Greek civil society and people. Second, Greek industry and companies have always been small and medium size. At times of hardship, such as in the 1950s, Greek Bank Governors could devalue the drachma and re-organise the export capacity of the country. No such alternative existed after 2001, when
The European leaders, especially
The problem of the insolvency of the periphery will remain, with the working classes suffering even more without any end in sight, and all this without solving once and for all the problems of the Euro, that is, a single currency without the backing of a single state.
At the time of writing, official unemployment in
Emphatically, there is but one alternative for the embattled country: immediate default on its sovereign debt and exit from the Eurozone. The more
The two-party system of PASOK and ND which has been governing
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