It is a strange thing how the financiers preaching pain forget that in a democracy the people who vote will not greet policies that promote unemployment and a savage fall in living standards with enthusiasm. So it is today in Greece where the bankers and other assorted financiers are squabbling over just what austere policies are needed to preserve the greatest amount of value possible for the billions they have lent the spendthrift Greek Government over the years. The people are taking to the streets in massive demonstrations as they denounce government plans to appease the trio of the European Central Bank, the European Community and the International Monetary Fund. As darkness fell overnight there was the real possibility that the government of Prime Minister George A. Papandreou would fall. The International Herald Tribune reports:

And the verdict of those dreaded financial markets on all this confusion? If the Greek Government wants to borrow money for a couple of years it will have to pay an annual interest rate of 28%.

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Peter Fray
Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey
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