Wednesday, June 29, 2011

How Greece ended up circling the bowl. Sound familiar?

The Greek Way of Sorrow

Thirty years ago this fall, on October 18, 1981, a charismatic academic with rather limited government experience and with a one-word slogan, “Change,” was elected prime minister of Greece. His name was Andreas Papandreou. Greeks may now wish that 30 years ago they had had a Tea Party movement. Things could have turned out differently.

Thirty years ago, Greece was in an enviable position on the matter of national debt, with its debt just 28.6 percent of GDP. Few advanced countries can manage that kind of debt-to-GDP ratio. By the end of Papandreou’s first term in office, that ratio had nearly doubled, with debt at 54.7 percent of GDP. By the end of his second term, the figure was in the mid 80s.

The 1980s in Greece were a time of dramatic expansion of government. Papandreou and his Socialist party created a new government-run health-care system, dramatically expanded employment in the public sector, nationalized failing companies, and increased government handouts of every shape and form.

Just change a few names and dates and you have the disastrous Obama regime in the USA. Hit the link for many more uncanny similarities, but one of my favorite parts is:

Finland may have the best educational system in Europe, but its ratio of students to teachers is double that of Greece, which has one of the worst educational systems.

Cue the US teachers union hacks wailing about "the children."