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Generational Dynamics Web Log for 12-Jun-2015
12-Jun-15 World View -- IMF and ECB walk out of negotiations with Greece

Web Log - June, 2015

12-Jun-15 World View -- IMF and ECB walk out of negotiations with Greece

Zimbabwe offers 5 US dollars for 175 quadrillion Zim dollars

This morning's key headlines from

Zimbabwe offers 5 US dollars for 175 quadrillion Zim dollars

Boy carrying Zim dollars
Boy carrying Zim dollars

Zimbabwe citizens still having bank accounts denominated in Zim dollars will have them replaced with accounts in US dollars. Each depositor will receive $5 for any account up to 175 quadrillion dollars. The Zim dollar, which has been completely destroyed the country's genocidal president Robert Mugabe, is finally being buried forever.

It would be hard to choose a country leader anywhere in the world who's more vile than Syria's Bashar al-Assad, but Zimbabwe's 91 year old Robert Mugabe certainly qualifies. Mugabe's actions to transform Zimbabwe, the breadbasket of southern Africa, into a starving disease-ridden country are almost beyond belief. (See "Zimbabwe's 'Liberation Hero' president Robert Mugabe continues to destroy his country" from 2008.)

As recently as the 1999, Zimbabwe was a breadbasket of Africa, exporting up to 500,000 metric tons of surplus food. By 2003, Zimbabwe was so starved that it had to receive 500,000 metric tons in food aid from the U.N.'s World Food Program.

What happened during those three years was a Marxist socialist "land reform" program by Robert Mugabe that confiscated 4,500 white-owned commercial farms and redistributed the property to loyal supporters of his Zanu-PF party -- i.e., members of his own Shona ethnic group. Anyone from the Ndebele tribe, the Shona's centuries old enemy, who objected was killed, tortured or jailed.

Many of the new owners were inexperienced in running large farms, and food production fell dramatically, as only a few hundred of the confiscated farms continued to function normally. Harvests of food staples plummeted by as much as 90%, livestock herds dwindled and production of the main cash crop, tobacco, slumped badly.

The results were dramatic, and show how it's possible for one dictatorial leader to destroy a country single-handedly. A formerly well-fed country had rampant 80% poverty, and the inflation rate went from 700% to 1000% to 10000% to 150000% and continued rising 500 billion percent. In 2009, Zimbabwe switched to a dual-currency economy, accepting the US dollar as valid currency. At that point, the Zimbabwe dollar collapsed completely, and millions of citizens had their saving destroyed.

In addition to having completely destroyed Zimbabwe's economy, Mugabe is best known for his 1984 pacification campaign known as "Operation Gukurahundi" (The rain that washes away the chaff before the spring rain). During that campaign, accomplished with the help of Mugabe's 5th Brigade, trained by North Korea, tens of thousands of people, mostly from the Ndebele tribe, were tortured and slaughtered. All Africa and Zero Hedge

IMF and ECB walk out of negotiations with Greece

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) walked out of talks in Brussels with Greece's prime minister Alexis Tsipras because the two positions were not getting any closer. According to an IMF spokesman:

"There are major differences between us in most key areas. There has been no progress in narrowing these differences recently and thus we are well away from an agreement.

We remain engaged. The IMF doesn’t leave the table."

European Central Bank (ECB) officials left Brussels as well.

The lenders are demanding that Greece institute reforms to address various economic issues, including Greece's bloated public sector, curbing tax evasion and corruption, privatizing public businesses, and adjusting generous pension and minimum wage policies. On Wednesday there were reports that Europe was willing to consider "kicking the can down the road again" by requiring only one reform now, and leaving the others for next year, but nothing has come of that.

European Council President Donald Tusk said: "We need decisions, not negotiations now. There is no more space for gambling; there is no more time for gambling. The day is coming, I am afraid, that someone says the game is over. ... The Greek government has to be, I think, a little bit more realistic."

A Greek official appeared upbeat: "The Greek delegation, as agreed, is ready to intensify deliberations in order to conclude a deal soon, even in the coming days."

Tsipras would like the IMF to completely write off the debt that Greece owes. The IMF can't do that, because they've loaned a lot of money to a lot of other countries, and if Greece's debt were written off, then others would demand the same treatment.

Tsipras can't agree to pension reduction or the other reforms because his government would probably collapse. On Thursday, Greece's Communist party took over the finance ministry, saying Tsipras is the third Prime Minister to sell Greece down the river.

The "final deadline" for a deal is June 18, the date of the next Eurogroup meeting of eurozone finance ministers. However, there have been so many "final deadlines" till now, we can't be sure.

It's thought that the "final final deadline" is June 30, when Greece must make a 1.6 billion euro payment to the IMF.

The logic of the Game of Chicken is that neither car veers off until the very last second. So if there's going to be a deal, it will probably occur just a couple of minutes before midnight on June 30. Kathimerini and Reuters

The Greek Tragedy must move to the happy ending

Commenting on Greece's debt crisis, EU Economic Affairs Commissioner Pierre Moscovici said:

"I really like Greek tragedy but now we must move to the happy ending."

Apparently Moscovici knows little about ancient Greek theatre. If he did, then he would know that a comedy has a happy ending, and a Greek tragedy always has a tragic ending. Business Insider

(Comments: For reader comments, questions and discussion, see the 12-Jun-15 World View -- IMF and ECB walk out of negotiations with Greece thread of the Generational Dynamics forum. Comments may be posted anonymously.) (12-Jun-2015) Permanent Link
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