Why Greece is in the toilet

Discussion in 'Economics' started by Ghost of Cutten, Mar 12, 2012.

  1. Would be hilarious if the consequences weren't so disastrous.


    'Antonopoulos and his partners spent hours collecting papers from tax offices, the Athens Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the municipal service where the company is based, the health inspector’s office, the fire department and banks. At the health department, they were told that all the shareholders of the company would have to provide chest X-rays, and, in the most surreal demand of all, stool samples.

    Once they climbed the crazy mountain of Greek bureaucracy and reached the summit, they faced the quagmire of the bank, where the issue of how to confirm the credit card details of customers ended in the bank demanding that the entire website be in Greek only, including the names of the products.

    “They completely ignored us, however much we explained that our products are aimed at foreign markets and everything has to be written in English as well,” said Antonopoulos.

    Eventually, Antonopoulos and his associates decided to use foreign banking systems like PayPal, and cut the Greek bank, with which they had been negotiating for three months, from the middle. “It’s their loss, not ours. We eventually solved the problem in just one day,” explained Antonopoulos.

    Antonopoulos describes the massive difference between the treatment he and his partners received from the Greek authorities and the American Food and Drug Administration (FDA), whose approval Oliveshop.com needed in order to export its products to the USA.

    “I contacted the FDA and they sent us an e-mail with directions immediately. I filled in an online form and was done in five minutes. We received the approval 24 hours after making our application.”'
  2. Eight


    Greece has defaulted on its external sovereign debt obligations five previous times in the modern era (1826, 1843, 1860, 1894 and 1932). Including the current one, they go, on the average, just 31 years between defaults, I'm surprised that they went 80 years between defaults this last time, they probably are awarding themselves the "most improved" award.

    The article is at http://www.forbes.com/sites/investor/2011/09/28/debt-defaults-have-greek-history/
  3. And you think this kind of bureaucracy is confined to Greece? It's all over Europe. Wait till you return to your beloved UK and you will see.
  4. mgrund


    I was in greece last week , their toilets dont flush.Their plumbing sytem is awful, have to put used toilet roll in bins next to the WC , which I obviously refused to do on hygiene grounds.
  5. nitrene


    This is the best article I read about the craziness of Greece:


    Indeed, as well as not paying for their metro tickets, the people of Greece barely paid a penny of the underground’s £1.5 billion cost — a ‘sweetener’ from Brussels (and, therefore, the UK taxpayer) to help the country put on an impressive 2004 Olympics free of the city’s notorious traffic jams.

    The transport perks are not confined to the customers. Incredibly, the average salary on Greece’s railways is £60,000, which includes cleaners and track workers - treble the earnings of the average private sector employee here.

    The overground rail network is as big a racket as the EU-funded underground. While its annual income is only £80 million from ticket sales, the wage bill is more than £500m a year — prompting one Greek politician to famously remark that it would be cheaper to put all the commuters into private taxis.
    ‘We have a railroad company which is bankrupt beyond comprehension,’ says Stefans Manos, a former Greek finance minister. ‘And yet, there isn’t a single private company in Greece with that kind of average pay.’

    Ridiculously, Greek pastry chefs, radio announcers, hairdressers and masseurs in steam baths are among more than 600 professions allowed to retire at 50 (with a state pension of 95 per cent of their last working year’s earnings) — on account of the ‘arduous and perilous’ nature of their work.
  6. mgrund


    Greece is only good for one thing, the beaches used to be good- but at least u get many northern european girls holidaying there, easy for a quick shag