Slow motion disaster

I cannot help but get the sense as I watch events unfold in Greece that we are watching the unfolding of a slow motion disaster, the beginning of a whole series of disasters as western economies begin to fold under the weight of the incredible debt they have accrued over the past 50 years paying for social programs their nations could never afford.

No one ever wants to believe these kinds of things will happen to them or in the time they are living, but a quick look around the world right now with any kind of realistic outlook shows that they are happening and that they are going to affect every one of us soon.

The question that remains is what each of us is going to do in response to the massive and enduring changes that will result from this slow motion disaster. Now is the time for people who care to stop talking in terms of rhetoric and to start doing. Get ready while there is still time to do so.


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2 Responses to Slow motion disaster

  1. John RD Kidd, London says:

    Whilst the rating agencies watch Greece carefully for evidence of imminent default, Israel has, in desperation, decided to ask Greece to share her bed, having been negligent enough to have lost the vastly more important Turkey.

    When the Israeli commandos decided to attack the Gaza flotilla last year and to kill eight Turkish human rights activists, at point blank range, they clearly misjudged the consequences of that brutality.

    Having lost the Turkish market for military equipment exports, Israel has now to settle for Greece, a state just 1/6th the size with a population 1/8th that of Turkey and a GDP of only 1/3rd of Turkey’s $960 billion.

    That’s what happens when you kill influential friends, they treat you as an enemy. And losing so many friends appears to be both arrogant and stupid.

    Turkey, which borders eight other states, is of huge geo-strategic importance in the region and is furthermore a European country that Middle-Eastern Israel can ill afford to lose. That she has done is a sad reflection on the Israeli government’s ability to comply with international law and to respect international conventions and the will of the United Nations.

    • dlhitzeman says:

      So, the fact that Greece is defaulting on its debt because it spent something like twice as much money as it was collecting in taxes to prop up social programs that essentially allowed millions of Greeks to collect government salaries without doing any work is Israel’s fault because it had a falling out with Turkey over the fact that Turkey was allowing flotillas of ships to smuggle arms into the Palestinian territories under the guise of humanitarian aid? Seriously?

      Every nation teetering at the brink of default–Greece, Spain, Portugal, Ireland–and those struggling to control their budgets before reaching the same point–Italy, France, Great Britain, the United States, Canada–are all at that point for one reason: massive spending on social welfare programs that were never sustainable from the time they were conceived.

      In the United States, 68 cents of every dollar the government spends goes to direct payments to individuals, and 48 cents of every dollar the government spends is borrowed. That means that no less that 20 cents of every dollar paid in the form of Medicaid, Medicare, Social Security, or unemployment benefits is borrowed. This is unsustainable, and the result of such unsustainability is what is happening in Greece.

      And for the record, if Turkey keeps up its own unsustainable ways, it won’t have to worry about its relationship with Israel.

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