Amidst the media headlines about Greece that proclaim ‘economic crisis’, ‘bailouts’, austerity measures’, ‘laziness’ and ‘avoiding their taxes’ there is an element that is often conspicuous by its absence; the toll of these economic measures on those who matter, the people.
Therefore I set out to discover the effect of the ‘solutions’ for the economic crisis on the everyday lives of Greek people.
Here is the reality and it is indeed a tragic tale.
Most, if not all, Greek workers are on the receiving end of a pay cut. The pay cut structure is tiered, it is 22% for people over 25 and 32% for people under 25 years of age. This is a huge reduction in their income.
Although the pay cut is not obligatory for employers to impose, it seems that many of them will take this option, probably because, for many of them, their own costs have increased substantially.
The wage cuts are being imposed across the board, so that even the minimum wage is set to be reduced; for the under 25′s it will be 450 euros per month and for the over 25′s it will be 580 euros per month. (US$600 or GBP375 and US$775 or GBP485, respectively)
Such reductions in income are harsh enough on their own, but the impact becomes worse when considered in the light of the large price increases that have taken place, and indeed continue to take place, on most, if not all, of the basic necessities of life. In addition, taxes have also risen and new measures will make all income taxable. So, not only are people earning less, they have a greater percentage taken away from their income in taxes.
For many Greek people, even before these austerity measures, their salaries barely covered outgoings on the regular and ongoing bills, on such costs as water, sewerage, taxes, electricity, fuel and of course food.
These costs are the basic necessities and do not include other necessities such as clothes.
However, the austerity measures being imposed on the Greek people for a ‘debt’ they have not incurred will make it harder to even afford these basic necessities.
It is no exaggeration to call these austerity measures ‘genocidal’.
To put it into perspective:
- Imagine how it would impact your own life and your ability to pay your bills if your salary was cut by somewhere between 1/4 and 1/3!
- Imagine how it would impact your life if, as well as suffering a pay cut of approximately 1/4, or 1/3, you then have to cover price increases on your basic living costs.
For example, the price of petrol has almost doubled in the past 2 years. In a largely agricultural country such as Greece, this is a heavy additional cost that has to be recouped leading to large price hikes on that most vital necessity for life, food.
Furthermore, statistics show that officially unemployment stands at 21% of the population, but is likely to be much higher as official statistics are often underestimated; that 1/3 of small businesses have closed, which is devastating in a country where a large proportion of the people run their own small business; that unemployment benefit is limited to 360 euros per month (US$480 or GBP300) and lasts for 1 year only, after which, nothing!
When the austerity is supposed to last for years in order to repay the loans and make up for the deficits, how are people expected to survive?
This is an appalling situation!!!
The current feelings of despair are spreading throughout the Greek people and creating a dismal looking future. Statistics show that, for the 18 – 30 age group:
1/2 work to be able to study
1/2 are thinking of going abroad to find work
1/3 are thinking of leaving school
2/3 fear they will lose their job
As the ‘economic crisis’ spreads throughout Europe and threatens to create a world economic collapse, where will they be able to go for alternative work?
Many Greek parents are justifiably angry that they have worked hard for many years to ensure that their children have a good education and then have to sit by and helplessly watch them leave their native country in order to gain employment, or rather to attempt to gain employment.
This is an unnecessary brain drain and a desperately sad situation.
But more importantly, this situation has not been created by the Greek people, but is being imposed ON the Greek people by the ‘power elite’ who are running current world events for their own ‘agenda’.
The Greek people are resilient, but they are being sorely tried at the moment. They need our support and assistance to stop the ‘agenda’ being continued, because the ‘agenda’ will not stop at Greece, the whole world is in the sights of the ‘power elite’ and has been for more than a century.
This is no theory of a conspiracy, it is a real conspiracy and one for which there is a great deal of documentary evidence that is far too extensive to expand upon in this blog article.
As the title of this blog indicates, it may be Greece today, but whose turn will it be tomorrow? Ireland? Spain? Italy? France? Your country?
For further information on the level of destitution in Athens, please read the article from this link, HERE
For further information on the situation in Greece, please listen to the second half of the radio broadcast which contains an interview with a Greek blogger from HERE
For further information on the ‘agenda’ please read our blogs, our online article magazines and watch the videos from the links on our website, www.howtobenaturallyhealthy.com.