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How serious is the anti-Euro sentiment?

 
 
Reply Fri 24 Dec, 2010 10:33 pm
It seems many countries - including Germans - are feeling they're being penalized for seeming to be too successful in the Euro zone while the middle class wages have been stagnant for the past ten years.

How is this playing out in the other Euro countries? Are they having second thoughts about having enrolled in the Euro club?

With Greece, Ireland, Spain, and Italy in big financial trouble, while their economy seems to drag at low speed, more people are questioning whether staying with the Euro is a good idea.

What'cha all think about this?
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Type: Question • Score: 2 • Views: 2,724 • Replies: 27
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Cycloptichorn
 
  1  
Reply Fri 24 Dec, 2010 10:37 pm
Hell, Ireland has been totally screwed by the Euro.

Cycloptichorn
hawkeye10
 
  0  
Reply Fri 24 Dec, 2010 11:33 pm
@Cycloptichorn,
Quote:
IMPACT OF THE EU STRUCTURAL FUNDS IN IRELAND (1989-2006)
The European Union’s Regional Policy, through the Structural Funds, has played an important part in the transformation of the Irish economy, in particular by bringing about the rapid convergence of Irish living standards to EU levels during the 1990s. Since joining the EU in 1973 Ireland has received over €17 billion in EU Structural and Cohesion Funds support.

The Structural Funds' contribution to economic and social development in Ireland was one of a range of causal factors, which were mutually reinforcing. Budgetary consolidation, tax and fiscal reform, and wage moderation achieved through social partnership, all helped to greatly improve Ireland's international competitiveness, making the economy particularly attractive for foreign direct investment (FDI). Sound macroeconomic policies were complemented by structural measures, particularly in the education and training areas, and reforms of the tax and social protection systems, which ensured the availability of skilled labour and promoted the growth of the labour force to meet market demand.

The Structural Funds contributed by increasing the net capital inflow into the economy and, more importantly, by co-financing structural measures for regional development, infrastructure and human resource development. As the Second Cohesion Report indicated "Ireland is an example of 'good practice' of the first order" as it "demonstrates what can be achieved if Structural Funds assistance is integrated into a coherent policy which, in particular, maintains healthy macroeconomic conditions and which is supported by social consensus
http://www.iro.ie/EU-structural-funds.html

Ireland loved the EU while it was sucking at the tit, to the tune of over 4,000 euro per person over this time frame, but it is not clear that they are any better off than they were before. Ireland has some new roads, bridges,trains and the like thanks to EU funding, but they certainly did not buy a sound economy with this 17 billion as claimed.
cicerone imposter
 
  2  
Reply Fri 24 Dec, 2010 11:45 pm
@hawkeye10,
The way I see the problem is somewhat different than the Structural Funds that was provided to Ireland.

When any country joins a currency, they lose control of inflation/deflation. Because all economies are different, you can't have one currency establish the cost of goods and services within one's country with a different mix within the economy.

In other words, a country like Germany whose economy has remained relatively strong in the world marketplace, they're able to keep up with the world market with a good deal of competition and gain through a bigger mix of the world's currencies. On the other hand, a country like Greece and Spain doesn't have much in the way of world trade, and they're stuck with the high cost of the Euro. Their governments end up borrowing more money to maintain their country, and end up unable to pay on their debt, because they have no "trade surplus."

Bankruptcy ensues as a natural course in their inability to maintain within the Euro currency.

2 Cents
hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Sat 25 Dec, 2010 12:12 am
@cicerone imposter,
Quote:
When any country joins a currency, they lose control of inflation/deflation. Because all economies are different, you can't have one currency establish the cost of goods and services within one's country with a different mix within the economy.
Certainly, but you should not overlook that had Ireland given the EU the cold shoulder it would have remained the economic backwater of Europe. The Irish supercharged their economic system with the strong encouragement of the EU and with the EU supplying the seed money to lure capital flows, this being back in the day when flows of capital all around the world at the speed of a mouse click was considered to be a GOOD thing, before we learned how destabilizing these massive inflows and outflows of capital are to nations and to people who require work to support their lifestyle.

Ireland became one of Europe's version of Las Vegas or Modesto (Spain was another), and it probably would have been better off had it avoided the bubble and the popping of the bubble.....stayed sleepy.
cicerone imposter
 
  2  
Reply Sat 25 Dec, 2010 10:22 am
@hawkeye10,
You're talking about 20/20 hindsight. I'm saying it was wrong of Ireland to join the Euro from the inception, because they have lost control of their own financial management.

I have learned early in my working years that you don't let anybody else control your investments; their interest in how they make money is a conflict of interest.

Same analogy.

hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Sat 25 Dec, 2010 12:19 pm
@cicerone imposter,
Quote:
You're talking about 20/20 hindsight. I'm saying it was wrong of Ireland to join the Euro from the inception, because they have lost control of their own financial management.

I dont remember what the argument was for why nations did not need to be concerned with losing the ability to devalue their currency out of a crisis...do you? Near as I can figure nothing bad was ever supposed to happen, something like how pre 2001 terror attack/recession we were hearing how we would never have another recession because the masters had fixed the boom/bust cycle. It gets back to how we have lost the ability to evaluate risk, lost the ability to take a true reading of what our situation is....it was the core problem that caused the latest crash...combined with greed and lack of caring for the welfare of others.
Cycloptichorn
 
  1  
Reply Sat 25 Dec, 2010 12:25 pm
@hawkeye10,
The worst part of the whole thing is that the Irish are being looted to protect German and other European banks from taking a bath on their terrible investment choices.

Damn, that sounds eerily familiar....

Cycloptichorn
0 Replies
 
cicerone imposter
 
  1  
Reply Sat 25 Dec, 2010 01:10 pm
@hawkeye10,
hawk, You hit the head of the nail on that one! Our financial institutions will never work when they are created to increase wealth without the support of goods and services that's supposed to be the foundation of any economy. As we have seen and experienced, individuals, corporations, and investment banks and institutions commit fraud to enrich themselves at the expense of everybody else. Greed is a human trait and weakness of any financial management system.

These problems will not disappear with more government rules and regulations; they will only exacerbate the problems.

If you remember when Greenspan was chairman of the feds; he claimed as does Bernanke now that they will control inflation/deflation based on interest rates. How successful do they think they've been on that score?
hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Sat 25 Dec, 2010 04:10 pm
@cicerone imposter,
Quote:
If you remember when Greenspan was chairman of the feds; he claimed as does Bernanke now that they will control inflation/deflation based on interest rates. How successful do they think they've been on that score?
I am convinced that Greenspan never understood that the goal of the corporate class was to create international law and finance systems that depowered the governments ability to control anything through the central banks. Once the weapons were removed from the government forces there was no one remaining on the battle field who could challenge the interests of the corporate class, which is pretty much where we ended up. In theory Governments can still set law and manipulate interest rates as they like, in reality international courts and market forces keep governments from doing anything that the corporate class does not want to see happen. This is how we end up with the Great Recession proving that the current global trade system does not work, and yet we are not able to fix it. The fixes require the corporate class to give up some control and take a haircut at least in the short term, and they are not willing to do this and no one can make them now. We are doomed to experience the complete breakdown of the global economy, only after nothing is left and the masses start starving and start overthrowing governments for failure to perform and the masses aim their guns at the heads of the corporate class with a clear willingness to fire will we be able to create something that works.
cicerone imposter
 
  1  
Reply Sat 25 Dec, 2010 04:30 pm
@hawkeye10,
Our perceptions about our future economy is pretty close; I laugh when I read and hear from current media that our economy is improving! Retail sales are up from last year! Big friggen deal. More Americans are without jobs and home than in any time after the Great Depression. Home sales and construction of homes and all that entails in terms of appliances and raw materials that sell for hundreds of thousands cannot be made up from the few percentage point uptick in retail sales for one month.

All while the banks hang onto over-valued real estate, and they're afraid to foreclose on them. Who's kidding who?

So the government institutes more rules against banks that are now planning more fees for the folks who has a minimum balance in their bank accounts.

They know not what they do; they are destroying the middle class.

Christmas retail sales are up? ROFLAMO

hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Sat 25 Dec, 2010 04:39 pm
@cicerone imposter,
Quote:
They know not what they do; they are destroying the middle class
we started talking about this 20 years ago, and we know damn well what happens to a democratic free market society when this happens (collapse), but we have shown no willingness to address the situation. Recent studies show that for a long time the wealth stratification has been even worse than we thought it was, and that post Great Recession the speed of increasing stratification is picking up.

Quote:
I laugh when I read and hear from current media that our economy is improving
We know with 100% certainty where this train goes. I am not impressed with descriptions of the scenery along the route, in the end it will not matter. It is either laugh or cry...I cant fault you for your choice.
hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Sat 25 Dec, 2010 05:07 pm
@hawkeye10,
Quote:
we started talking about this 20 years ago....no willingness to address the situation.
I would be curious as to you explanation for why this is. My take is that everyone thinks or at leasts hopes that it will be them who joins the corporate class, that they are under the impression that quite a lot of people do move up even though they know that as the middle class disappears more will move down. Furthermore, we now know that perception is far from reality, that very few people who leave the middle class move up, almost all move down, to the tune of about 7:1 (probably worse odds, but I am trying to be optimistic). We ignore the greater good and roll the dice hoping to promote our personal good, only the odds of success are far worse than we think they are. We are the idiots who take our life savings to Vegas expecting to come back made, only it rarely works out that way because not only is the game rigged but most of the successful (successful means not losing our shirts,not necessarily making any money) players know far more about how the game works than we do.
cicerone imposter
 
  1  
Reply Sat 25 Dec, 2010 05:19 pm
@hawkeye10,
Actually, the trend toward losing the middle class started about 30 years ago when wives started working to keep up with the Joneses just to find out that the two salaries they were making didn't really increase their lifestyle. Children missed their parents, but the parents spoiled them with more goodies from the store to relieve them from some of their guilty feelings for not tending to the kids. The era when the man made enough to support a family disappeared, and most found themselves living off of credit cards and the equity in their homes.

We all know what happened after that!
hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Sat 25 Dec, 2010 06:24 pm
@cicerone imposter,
Quote:
Actually, the trend toward losing the middle class started about 30 years ago when wives started working to keep up with the Joneses just to find out that the two salaries they were making didn't really increase their lifestyle
right,women working was the compensatory move to deal with the fact that the economy began to stop working to better our lives through work somewhere 1969-1971. We never recovered from all of the turmoils (capitalism hates turmoil and unpredictability) and the ending of the Vietnam funding was also a shock to the economy). Then we added Watergate and the oil shocks just for good measure...the resulting stagflation was a body blow to the American psyche. Along came useless Jimmy Carter and the Iranian Hostage crisis where we proven yet again that we had lost control and were impotent. Reagan fixed the spirit some but only by juicing the economy and thus destabilizing it. America became addicted to the fast fix and easy answer, and that was all she wrote.

We compensated for our lack of control over our situation (partly because no one was home for the kids and we could not do anything about it, nor could we fix our overloaded daily schedules) by becoming hyper vigilant towards our children, and our lack of economic progess by spoiling our kids like you say....because it made the adults feel better about themselves...and thus pretty much ruined a generation of kids, which considering that they need to fix the damage that the boomers have caused is not exactly encouraging.

We know how we got to this sorry place, how we get out without massive pain and suffering IDK. What do you do when everyone is bankrupt and the people are either unable or unwilling to take care of themselves and look to government to take care of them (see the rape thread for just one small example of this), which the government claims to do but is fabulously under resourced to do plus is completely corrupted by the corporate class looking for yet more treasure to plunder? The people need to feel a 2x4 upside the head but we cant do that anymore, supposedly. Got any other ideas? It looks to me that we have given up,are buckled in for the big crash, and that we will figure out the way ahead after we see what is salvageable.

CalamityJane
 
  1  
Reply Sat 25 Dec, 2010 09:32 pm
Ireland was an impoverished country before it entered the EU and it benefited
the most from being part of the EU. Ireland received a lot of financial aid then
and it does now. Government mismanagement (the former prime minister claimed to have won all that extra income due at horse races), lowered taxes
(lower than other EU countries) while giving its citizens great social benefits,
and last not least - the recession have contributed to Ireland's financial problems.

Yet, the Irish are resilient smart people who will emerge from this crisis and
have a strong economy once more.

As for Greece: the government wasted money left and right, lowered taxes
considerably, retirement age was 55 and social benefits were free. It had to
collapse sooner or later. However, unlike the Irish, the Greek get angry and
make everyone else responsible for their economic misery. They won't realize and accept that it was self-inflicted by their own government officials.
hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Sat 25 Dec, 2010 09:34 pm
@hawkeye10,
timely

Quote:
How many middle-class Americans now believe that the sky is the limit if they work hard enough? How many trust capitalism to give them a fair shake? Middle-class income started to flatten in the 1970s and has stagnated ever since. While 3M has continued to prosper, many other companies that actually make things (and at times innovative things) have been devalued, looted or destroyed by a financial industry whose biggest innovation in 20 years, in the verdict of the former Fed chairman Paul Volcker, has been the cash machine.

It’s a measure of how rapidly our economic order has shifted that nearly a quarter of the 400 wealthiest people in America on this year’s Forbes list make their fortunes from financial services, more than three times as many as in the first Forbes 400 in 1982. Many of America’s best young minds now invent derivatives, not Disneylands, because that’s where the action has been, and still is, two years after the crash. In 2010, our system incentivizes high-stakes gambling — “this business of securitizing things that didn’t even exist in the first place,” as Calvin Trillin memorably wrote last year — rather than the rebooting and rebuilding of America.

In last week’s exultant preholiday press conference, Obama called for a “thriving, booming middle class, where everybody’s got a shot at the American dream.” But it will take much more than rhetorical Scotch tape to bring that back. The Barstows of 1956 could not have fathomed the outrageous gap between this country’s upper class and the rest of us. America can’t move forward until we once again believe, as they did, that everyone can enter Frontierland if they try hard enough, and that no one will be denied a dream because a private party has rented out Tomorrowland.

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/12/26/opinion/26rich.html?pagewanted=2&hp
0 Replies
 
hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Sat 25 Dec, 2010 09:39 pm
@CalamityJane,
Quote:
Yet, the Irish are resilient smart people who will emerge from this crisis and
have a strong economy once more
When did the Irish have a strong economy? They thought they did for 15 minutes, but it was not real.
CalamityJane
 
  1  
Reply Sat 25 Dec, 2010 09:40 pm
@hawkeye10,
Look up "celtic tiger" - and no it's not a football team.
hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Sat 25 Dec, 2010 09:46 pm
@CalamityJane,
Quote:
Look up "celtic tiger" - and no it's not a football team.
that was never real, it was an attempt to jump start the Irish economy with EU money and financial gimmicks, which has left the country exactly where it was when it started....impoverished , going no where, and with almost nothing going for it.

Dont look for the EU to throw more Euros at them and save them now, after the Irish took a run at derailing the EU Constitution. There is nothing in Ireland that anyone needs, though the beer ad the whiskey are nice.
 

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