Sunday, June 17, 2012

Greece's Rigged Election

Did anyone really expect a different result?

"Greece forms emergency government amid banking fears; Interim leaders named; Germans offer ray of hope" by Anthony Faiola and Michael Birnbaum  |  Washington Post, May 17, 2012

ATHENS — Fresh fears were brewing over Greece’s banking system, where deposits have now fallen to $214 billion, down from $236 billion as recently as December. President Karolos Papoulias said yesterday that nearly $1 billion was withdrawn in recent days as uncertainty has grown following the inclusive May 6 elections. Those divided results, including new support for parties against the bailout deal, left politicians unable to form a new government and raised doubts about the will in Athens to stick to its agreement with the European Union and International Monetary Fund.  

Related: Greeks Can't Form Government

So they turned around and voted for austerity, yup.

However, two senior Greek banking officials, who spoke on the condition of anonymity given the sensitivity of the issue, said recent withdrawals have not yet reached the pace seen in February, just before Greece staged an orderly debt default with private investors. There were no obvious lines outside banks in Athens Wednesday, though funds are also being shifted around online.

“This isn’t a panic, but we have to make sure it doesn’t turn into one,’’ said one of the banking officials....  

Translation; there is a bank run across the continent and the banker's mouthpiece doesn't want you to know it.


"Crisis in Greece grows amid much uncertainty" May 18, 2012

ATHENS, Greece - Prime Minister David Cameron of Britain warned Thursday in a speech in Manchester, England: “The eurozone is at a crossroads. It either has to make up or it is looking at a potential breakup. Either Europe has a committed, stable, successful eurozone with an effective firewall, well-capitalized and -regulated banks, a system of fiscal burden sharing and supportive monetary policy across the eurozone, or we are in uncharted territory, which carries huge risks for everybody.’’

For Europe’s thoroughly rattled financial markets, Greece is the ultimate uncharted territory, and the appointment of a temporary government did little to alter that. The two established parties in favor of the bailout deal, New Democracy and the Socialists, have described Syriza leader Alexis Tsipras’s stance as reckless and irresponsible and were exploring potential alliances ahead of the elections.

That can only bolster Tsipras’s standing, and it hints at a backroom deal before the vote.


"In a recent election, neither of Greece’s two main parties, both of which support the bailout deal, fared well. Instead, minor parties that are threatening to renege on those commitments saw their popularity surge. A new round of elections is set for June 17."

"Antibailout party in Greece makes gains" Associated Press, May 26, 2012

ATHENS - A left-wing party that opposes Greece’s international bailout agreements has extended its lead ahead of next month’s election, according to a new poll published Friday.

The poll gave the Syriza party 30 percent support, widening its lead over the center-right New Democracy party from 2 to 4 percentage points from a poll on May 19.  

And yet somehow they lost today.    

The June 17 election was called when the country’s political parties failed to reach a power-sharing deal after a May 6 vote that left no group with a parliamentary majority.

Greece’s economy is being kept afloat on international loans, and the previous governments imposed severe spending cuts and other austerity measures that have infuriated the citizens. Syriza wants to scrap the loan agreements, but that has raised fears that Greece will leave the eurozone and destabilize world markets.

“There’s one real choice in these elections: The bailout or your dignity,’’ Syriza’s leader Alexis Tsipras, 37, said.

“We want all the peoples of Europe to hear us, and we want their leaders to hear us when we say that no [country] chooses to become servile, to lose their dignity or commit suicide. . . . We are the political party that with the help of the people will fulfill our campaign promises and cancel this bankrupt bailout deal.’’

And yet somehow they lost today. 

Also see: A True Greek Tragedy

The worst one yet.

The Public Issue poll surveyed 1,214 people for the Kathimerini newspaper and had a 3.2 percentage point margin of error.

Shares on the Athens Stock Exchange suffered losses Friday, dropping 3.45 percent to 485.18 to hit a 22-year low. 

Yes, the money men must punish the Greeks for their insolence for not bowing down as slaves before the greedy machine.


And what the money men taketh...

"Greek stocks soar on pro-bailout party’s poll gain" May 28, 2012|Globe Staff

Greek stock markets rebounded strongly on Monday from a 22-year low on hopes a pro-bailout party will win crucial national elections next month, which would avoid a catastrophic rift with international creditors and keep the struggling country within the euro currency union. 

They are signaling you, Greek voters!

The main stock index in Athens soared 6.5 percent in mid-afternoon trading, with the battered bank sector chalking up solid gains.

Four polls published Sunday reversed previous trends to indicate that conservative New Democracy could come first in the June 17 vote, slightly ahead of the anti-austerity radical left Syriza party.  

The FIX IS IN, folks!!!

Although the conservatives would still fall short of a governing majority, the surveys suggested they could form a coalition government with socialist PASOK, which have also pledged to stick to Greece’s austerity commitments....

What good are socialists if they are only socialist for banks?

And I am finding it MORE THAN A LITTLE ANGERING that the NEXT SENTENCE and following paragraph was REMOVED from the web version:

Banks got a boost Monday....

Oh, well, thank the Good Lord for that, Hallelujah!   

Related: Country’s 4 top banks to get $23b in capital

That was the boo$t. 

The austerity, however, also caused huge popular resentment toward New Democracy and PASOK, the two parties that accepted the terms.

But now they are ahead again, sigh.

Voters expressed that anger clearly in May 6 elections, giving a boost to anti-bailout parties. But the election proved inconclusive, with none of the parties able to form a coalition government, leaving Greece to hold another ballot next month.

But it all turned around, sigh.

Greece’s bailout creditors — the other countries in the 17-nation eurozone and the International Monetary Fund — insist that if the country reneges on its austerity commitments, the rescue loans will stop.

That would unleash chaos. The government would be unable to pay hospital workers, police and teachers, pensions would dry up and a potential panic run on bank deposits would destroy the tottering financial system.  

Since when have the money junkies cared about civil servants and their pensions?

Eventually, the country could be forced to abandon the 17-member eurozone, reverting to a vastly devalued form of its old drachma currency.  

That is the ANSWER, readers, because the return to the drachma would allow the Greek economy to soar.

Fears of such an outcome have battered Greek financial markets for weeks....

That's how money and markets control politics and elections.

Sergios Melahrinos, analyst at Solidus Securities, noted that if the two pro-bailout parties manage to win the election and have Greece honor its austerity commitments, banks would gain access to rescue money needed to avoid collapse. Under the country’s latest international bailout, domestic banks that took huge losses from a bond swap that more than halved Greece’s privately-held debt will receive billions of euros to boost their capitalization. If a new government in Athens unilaterally tears up the bailout deal — as Syriza has threatened to do — the recapitalization would fall through. 

Another chop:

“A potential win by the parties that back their recapitalization would be extremely good for lenders.’’

You know what they say: once is a mistake, twice is a pattern. 

But Melahrinos warned that the market would remain vulnerable to the ups and downs in the polls in the leadup to the elections. “New polls that show a reversal would obviously change the market picture.’’


One survey in To Vima newspaper found that 65 percent want Greece to remain in the eurozone even if it has to implement the bailout agreement as it stands, while 24 percent said they would prefer to exit the euro rather than implement austerity policies.

Since the beginning of 2010, Greeks have suffered repeated income cuts and tax hikes, while unemployment has hit record levels with more than one in five workers jobless after tens of thousands of businesses closed. The country is in a fifth year of deep recession, and continues to import about twice as much as it exports.  

And the Greeks just voted for more of it.

And what the web added

On Monday, Greek journalists held a 24-hour strike to protest pay cuts and rising unemployment, and to press for the signing of new collective wage contracts 

Oh, they PUT THEIR American counterparts to SHAME!! 

The strike stopped all TV and radio news broadcasts, while most internet news portals were not updating their content. No newspapers will be published Tuesday.

I guess I'll take the trade-off, huh?  


"Wary Greeks head back to polls; Eurozone future could be at stake" by Elena Becatoros  |  Associated Press, June 16, 2012

ATHENS - At the dinner table, in the coffee shop, on the street corner, the one constant as Greeks prepare to vote once again is concern. Depending on the outcome of Sunday’s election, Greece could be forced out of the European joint currency, with potentially catastrophic consequences for the global economy....

The debt-ridden country’s two-year financial crisis has left much of the nation in tatters, tearing at its social fabric. Hospitals have run out of supplies, suicides have been on the increase, and unemployment has skyrocketed above 22 percent as tens of thousands of businesses shut down.

And the Greeks voted for more of that.  

The protracted crisis has also overturned Greece’s political scene, hammering the two parties that have dominated for decades and that Greeks blame for sending their country from boom to bust in just a few years....

Syriza leader Alexis Tsipras’ pledges, which include canceling planned privatizations, nationalizing banks, and rolling back cuts to minimum wages and pensions, have horrified European leaders as well as many Greeks. Although he insists he can persuade other European nations that it is in their interests to keep Greece within the euro, his political opponents have accused him of being out of touch with reality, saying his policies will force Greece out of the euro and lead to mass poverty for years to come.  

They have mass poverty now.


"Greece’s election could shake up bailout, economy" by Rachel Donadio and Steven Erlanger  |  New York Times, June 17, 2012

ATHENS - Greeks head to the polls Sunday for the second time in two months with a pervasive sense of dread that any government that comes to power will fail to resolve the political and economic turmoil that threatens the country’s future - and the financial stability of Europe itself. 

Even if the establishment center-right party New Democracy ekes out a victory in a race that polls show as tight, Greece faces weeks or months of negotiations with European lenders over the terms of its austerity program, which all parties agree are too onerous to enforce on its rapidly shrinking economy.   

And that is just what happened.

A victory by the leftist party Syriza promises a more serious confrontation, especially with Germany, over how - and perhaps whether - to keep Greece in the eurozone. 

The winner will also face an uphill battle to inject confidence into a paralyzed economy that depends heavily on the continued infusion of money by the European Central Bank. The bank, based in Frankfurt, has become the last lifeline for a financial system that has all but seized up and a deficit-ridden government that has little ability to raise new revenues or borrow money to continue its operations. 

On Monday, as Greece tries to determine whether it has a viable new government, leaders of the G-20 group of developed and emerging economies will gather in Mexico, where they are expected to debate ways to keep the Greek crisis and the weakness of the bigger economies of Spain and Italy from undermining the euro and dragging the global economy into a new recession 

Yes, dear readers, but FIVE YEARS after WE'RE SORRY, WE WON'T DO IT AGAIN, WE HAVE RULES, we are RIGHT BACK WHERE WE WERE FIVE YEARS AGO despite the "recovery."  

Central bankers from Tokyo to Washington have pledged to intervene in financial markets if necessary to shore up those economies, but the Greek drama threatens to keep investors on edge for weeks to come....

There is no mechanism to kick Greece out of the euro, and the two leading candidates say they have no intention of taking Greece out voluntarily. Greece could be forced to fend for itself if the European Central Bank decides that it is a fool’s errand to keep replenishing Greek banks that have no collateral or credibility. But the bank’s job is to protect the euro, and it has repeatedly argued that contagion from an exit by Greece could outweigh the costs of keeping it afloat....

Others increasingly warn of the risk of an “accident’’ - a bank run somewhere in the eurozone that spirals out of control, or the Greek government running out of money to pay salaries and pensions after paying back creditors - which could precipitate into market panic and social unrest.

Already happening.

Around 80 percent of Greeks want to remain in the European Union and within the eurozone, but they also want a radical renegotiation of the bailout terms. European leaders see this as a contradiction, but Greek leaders see it as necessary to fight a deepening recession....

A new round of negotiations also became inevitable after Spain got a $125 billion bailout for its banks on terms that are much less restrictive than the austerity package demanded of Greece, which unlike Spain had run up a huge fiscal deficit in better times.  


And the rigged results?

"Pro-euro party wins Greek election" by Demetris Nellas and Elena Becatoros  |  Associated Press, June 17, 2012

ATHENS, Greece (AP) — The pro-bailout New Democracy party came in first Sunday in Greece’s national election and could gather enough support to form a pro-bailout coalition to keep the country in the eurozone.

As central banks stood ready to intervene in case of financial turmoil, Greece held its second national election in just six weeks to try to select a new government after an inconclusive ballot on May 6.

Sunday’s vote was seen as crucial for Europe and the world, since it could determine whether Greece is forced to leave the joint euro currency, a move that could have potentially catastrophic consequences for other ailing European nations and the global economy.

Although official projections late Sunday showed that no party will win enough seats in the 300-member parliament to form a government on its own, Greece’s two traditional parties — the conservative New Democracy and the socialist PASOK — would have enough seats to form a coalition together....   

Oooh, STINK!!!!

The projections showed New Democracy winning 29.5 percent and 128 seats. The radical left Syriza party, which has vowed to repeal Greece’s international bailout deal, was expected to come in second with 27.1 percent and 72 seats. PASOK trails with 12.3 percent and 33 seats.

To form a majority government, a coalition would need at least 151 seats. The party that comes first in Sunday’s vote gets a bonus of 50 seats in the 300-member Parliament and gets the first try at forming a new government with a majority in Parliament. If they fail, the next highest party gets to try.

Earlier, the exit polls projected seven parties in all beating the 3 percent threshold for seats in Parliament, including the extremist right-wing Golden Dawn party, which vehemently rejects the neo-Nazi label but has been blamed for numerous violent attacks against immigrants.

Golden Dawn was projected at winning between 6 and 7.5 percent, roughly maintaining the level of the nearly 7 percent it won in May — a meteoric rise for a fringe party that had polled at just 0.3 percent.

Related: Greeks Can't Form Government

The small Democratic Left party was projected at winning between 5.5 and 6.5 percent, with the right-wing Independent Greeks tied with Golden Dawn at 6-7.5 percent.

There are no rules governing a country’s exit from the eurozone. A Greek exit could cause economic chaos in Europe, prompt investors to flee stocks in the U.S. , and spark a panic that other debt-strapped European nations — Portugal, Ireland, Spain and Italy — might also have to leave the eurozone.

That domino scenario — known in economic terms as contagion — could engulf the euro, causing a global financial panic not unlike the one that gripped the world in 2008 after the investment firm Lehman Brothers failed in the U.S.  

Yeah, you read that right. After TRILLIONS upon TRILLION in BAILOUT LOOT the world economy is RIGHT BACK WHERE IT WAS BEFORE even a DOLLAR was spent!

Virtually unknown outside of Greece four months ago, Tsipras and his party shot to prominence in the May 6 vote, where he came a surprise second and quadrupled his support since the 2009 election....

Earlier Sunday, about 10 men armed with sledgehammers and wooden bats attacked a polling station in central Athens, wounding two policemen guarding it and setting fire to the ballot box shortly before polls closed. The attack — the only one reported so far — took place in the Athens neighborhood of Exarhia, a traditional haven for leftists and anarchists.  

Greek agent provocateurs.

Greek police were also investigating the discovery Sunday of two unexploded hand grenades outside private Skai television station on the outskirts of Athens. Greek government spokesman Demetris Tsiodras denounced the devices as an attempt to spoil the smooth running of the election.  

Gladio grenades?


"The result forestalled what financial analysts had most feared: a victory for Syriza, a leftist party that objects to the bailout terms....


"We know that the US, the EU, the FED, the ECB are absolutely opposed to Greece breaking free of the debts in part created by the corrupt fraud perpetrated by Goldman Sachs and Papandreous. And as we know, the US has a history of gladly interfering in the elections of other nations when their interests are threatened.... 

 This claim that an "unofficial" poll shows the pro-debt-slavery party is ahead is to explain away the theft of Sunday's elections, because a moment's thought reveals the utter absurdity of this BBC claim that the Greek people agree to vote themselves into perpetual poverty to pay off debts crated without their permission through fraud and criminal action.

And let us not forget that much of Europe's debt crisis is the direct result of the crash of Wall Street's mortgage-backed security fraud; the biggest financial crime in history and one for which none of the perpetrators have yet to be arrested.

Even after the collapse of the mortgage-backed securities fraud, Wall Street recklessly sold more than $90 trillion in credit default swaps against Europe's debt, but lacks the cash to make good on the swaps when they come due. In other words, a victory for the anti-Austerity party Sunday means Wall Street gets a bill it cannot pay and that is an issue which in the eyes of the US Government is 'much too important for the Greek voters to be left to decide for themselves!' Past history assures us every vote rigging trick known is already in play in Athens.

The Greek people are looking at how Iceland handled the crisis. Iceland jailed their crooked bankers and fired their government. Their new government has written off all debts created through fraud and Iceland's economy is improving. Why would th Greek people NOT vote to follow the established pattern of success? Why would the people of Greece vote to continue the same policies which have wrecked their lives? The answer is that they would not. The answer is that we live in an age of rampant election fraud all across the western world, and governments willing to steal elections to guarantee continued looting of the world's people....

The money-junkies are going to steal Greece, and tell you the Greek people wanted it that way!

UPDATE: The polls have closed in Greece and even though the exit polls have the New Democratic Party (the money-junkie party) and the SYRIZA party (the anti-austerity party) as within a half point of each other, the western media are in many cases already proclaiming a victory for the money-junkies, that New Democrats will have 160 seats in the Parliament, etc. It is obvious there has been massive vote fraud in Greece, being sold to you with the ludicrous suggestion that the Greek people, driven into abject poverty by corrupt government policies, voted to keep those exact same policies in place. Such a suggestion is patently absurd on the face of it, and given that the United States has a long history of hijacking the democratic process to serve US interests, there is no reason to assume they have not done so here....

So, what now?

Despite the media frenzy to proclaim the party of the money-junkie triumphant, a gap of just a half point will mean a call for a recount if not a revote. Even if the money-junkies tampered with the election enough to put the New Democratic Party ahead, they failed to get an overwhelming majority, which means Greece is back where they were last May with two opposing parties trying to form a coalition government and the money-junkies refusing to join a coalition unless it is willing to plunge the Greek people back into slavery to the central bankers, and remember, much of the debt they are talking about was not created by the Greek people but resulted from a crooked deal between Goldman Sachs and Papandreous. So this will be a replay of last May, a coalition government blocked by the money-junkies again." -- Wake the Flock Up

Next Day Update:   

"Probailout party wins in Greece; Worries may ease on wider economy" by Rachel Donadio  |  New York Times, June 18, 2012

ATHENS -  Late Sunday, Alexis Tsipras, leader of the leftist Syriza Party, conceded the election, according to the Associated Press, and congratulated the conservative leader of New Democracy, Antonis Samaras....

With 82 percent of the vote counted, official results gave New Democracy 30 percent of the vote and 130 seats. The antibailout Syriza Party was in second place with 26.6 percent and 71 seats. PASOK trailed with 12.5 percent and 33 seats. The nationalist Golden Dawn Party and the Democratic left trailed with less than 7 percent each....  

Sound familiar, Americans?

Syriza had billed itself as a kind of “Greek Spring,’’ capturing the momentum of those hungry for change at almost any cost from a political system widely seen as corrupt and ineffective. It also had support from voters who feel betrayed by the Socialists, whose PASOK Party was in power in 2010 when Greece signed the first of its two loan deals with foreign creditors.  

Oh, they are Socialists, they are just Socialists for banks. 

And yup, somehow Syriza did worse in this round of elections, yup.

For its part, New Democracy has been tapping into a different kind of fear - of the unknown, of illegal immigration, of an exit from the eurozone hastened by a Syriza victory....

Germany’s finance minister welcomed the New Democracy victory as a mandate to move ahead with far-reaching reforms. Germany’s foreign minister said it was important for Greece to stick to its agreements with creditors, but held out the prospect that Athens might be given more time to comply with them.

Germany, which is Europe’s biggest economy, has been a major contributor to Greece’s two multibillion-euro rescue packages and has been the main advocate of tough austerity and reform measures in exchange. 


Related: Germany to Reoccupy Greece

Through banks this time.