When the facts change, I change my mind. What do you do? -- John Maynard Keynes

Monday, February 20, 2012

Greece: a return to the drachma?

Better title for article below: "Only a return to the drachma can save Greece as unemployment soars"--

Can a return to the drachma save Greece as unemployment soars? - Telegraph: ". . . . Mr Papademos warns that default and EMU-exit would lead to "uncontrollable economic chaos". But is that not already the case? No Greek bank has been able to issue a letter of credit accepted anywhere in the world since November. Large Greek companies are having to relocate their headquarters to Bulgaria in order to conduct basic trade. The "drachma risk" has already killed investment. Greece is suffering the anticipated consequences of EMU exit without the benefits, so it might as well lance the boil, impose capital controls, and create a new banking system (as Iceland did). Such catharsis might start to unlock €60bn of cash savings in gold, dollars, German euro notes (letter `X’, Greece `Y’), and such-like, sitting in the proverbial mattress. Foreign investors might start to nibble again, once the Greek exchange rate reflects reality at around seven Chinese yuan. . . . "

And yet, Greek leaders "fiddle" with a "sentimentality" for the euro (flawed currency that it is) while Greece continues to spiral down. And the French and Germans?

The European project is splitting apart at the very core - Telegraph: " . . . . On one hand, the defenders of the orthodoxy, led by the Commission and supported by France (which is exposed to a Greek default more than any other country), is battling to hold the line with another massive bail-out. . . On the other hand, it becomes increasingly clear that Germany, supported by Holland and Finland, has had enough. They see no point in throwing colossal sums of money into what Germany’s finance minister, Wolfgang Schäuble, calls “the bottomless pit” of Greek debt. It is they who have wanted to pile ever more impossible demands on Greece to hurry on a default. If other debtor countries such as Portugal, Italy and Spain follow suit and leave the euro that they should never have been allowed to join – so be it. . . .   However the chips fall in coming days and months, the eurozone will disintegrate. The European dream has entered a nightmare stage from which there is no rational escape and the consequences will be horrendous, for Europe and the world."


The Big Picture

Financial Crisis - The Telegraph

JohnTheCrowd.com | The Sailing Website

Craig Newmark - craigconnects