European Economic and Monetary Union and the Historically Wealthy Hellas: Her Current Debt Crisis [1]

European Economic and Monetary Union
and the Historically Wealthy Hellas:
Her Current Debt Crisis [1]
by
Dr. Ioannis N. Kallianiotis
Economics/Finance Department
The Arthur J. Kania School of Management
University of Scranton
Scranton, PA 18510-4602
U.S.A.
E-Mail: jnk353@scranton.edu

  • «Ἡ Πατρὶς καὶ ἡ Ἐκκλησία ἔχει σήμερον ὑπέρ ποτε ἄλλοτε ἀνάγκην
    ἀνδρῶν ζώντων οὐχὶ δι᾽ ἑαυτοὺς ἀλλὰ διὰ τὸ Γένος καὶ τὴν Ἐκκλησίαν»
    (Ἅγ. Νεκτάριος)

March 2011

ABSTRACT

This paper discusses the Greek economy since 1974, before and after joining the European Union and some of the problems that the current global and European debt crises have created to Greek and to all European citizens. The most severe problems are the social chaos, which is increasing every day, due to the current financial crisis and the worst recession since the great famine of 1940s, the economic and political corruption, which are underrated by the officials, and the tremendous uncertainty that this artificial and controlled “creature” (the Economic and Monetary Union) has generated to its member-nations and their citizens. Europe has a seven thousand years old history, which comes from ancient Greek civilization and is complemented by Christianity. Greece experienced many difficulties, conflicts, and invasions by barbarians and other neighboring countries, but she was defending her land. During her history, many good periods with tremendous contribution to the global scene are recorded. After WW II, the nation and its citizens enjoyed a huge growth, a stable development, a multiple improvement, and a preservation of their traditional social values (the real wealth of the nation). Lately, the European integration has destroyed the sovereign nation-states and it is ruling undemocratically an entire continent and Greece, as a member of the EU and EMU. European Union’s economic and social policies cannot satisfy any welfare functions for the Europeans, like justice, fairness, allocation, equity, stability, distribution, efficiency, full employment, homogeneity, security, sovereignty, independence, self-sufficiency, certainty, and democracy. EU has lowered Greece’s indigenous culture to a uniform sub-culture of waste, dependency, and apostasy. Unfortunately, if this union will not learn from its thousands years old European history and will not respect its Hellenic-Orthodox civilization, it would be better for Europeans to be knocked down, because it will just play the role of the main experiment for the accelerated globalization and the prototype of the human enslavement, the destruction of the nation, and the falsification of the history for these misfortune Greeks and all Europeans.

I. A SHORT HISTORICAL INTRODUCTION

My intention in this paper is to provide an outline of the economic history lying behind Greece before and after its joint to European Union (EU), a cost benefit analysis, her interdependence with EU, and the ineffectiveness of her lost public policies. Europe and “European Union” is nowadays a very political word and we will try to see what it has in common. The answer is that Europe has been different things at different times and has caused similar problems all the times. The goal of the study is to analyze the severe changes that have taken place in Greece after the 1957 Common Market idea and the 1992 integration. Of course, history now gets less attention among economists than it was once the case, and that makes current economies more vulnerable than in the past. Human beings are making history and most of the time, do so unconsciously. Hellenic history took its unique direction (with the Providence of God) because the country occupies an incomparable position and her people have a particular objective, which was to offer some possibilities to all humans to become persons (perfect personalities). It is very hard to describe truthfully, and impossible to analyze the contribution of Greeks and their nation to European history, but after 1974, the facts are well known to everyone of us. “The most important of them are to be found in ancient Greece, the world the Romans made, early Christianity, [the spiritual and godly Byzantine Empire], and the barbarian incursions into Western Europe in the closing of antiquity. Between them, they constituted the foundations of a future Europe.”[1]

Europe is the smallest of the five major continents and it is expanded to the Aegean Sea, the Black Sea, the Caucasus Mountains, and the Ural Mountains. To the east of those borders, Asia starts and Europe ends. Greece is between the Ionian and Aegean Sea and the Libyan Sea in the south; from north is bordered with Albania, Skopje, Bulgaria, and Turkey (north-east). Europe is not a matter of numbers and geography, but a concept of civilization, which started in Greece more than seven thousand years ago and expended to the rest of Europe. Europe’s earliest Neolithic sides have been found in Greece, Chalkidiki (the cave of Petralona). By 5600 B.C., skeletons and pottery was made in this region of North Greece (Macedonia). Also, a wooden plate with the first written text in Europe was found at Dispilio (Δισπηλιό) in Kastoria (North-West Greece), dated from 5260 B.C. Thus, Greeks were writing with syllables since that Neolithic period, prior to Phoenicians, Babylonians, Sumerians, Chananaei, and other eastern peoples.[2] Then the areas around the Aegean are those, which gave the first civilization in Europe. The cattle appeared to have been domesticated by 6000 B.C. in Crete[3] (Knossos) and on the island of Euboea Εὔβοια= Εὖ βοῦς),[4] which took its name from its good cows, both of which are in Greece. Minos was famed for his ships and Crete was the first naval power.[5] Later, this Minoan civilization ended and another emerged in Mycenae, which mobilized forces from many Greek cities and islands to siege Troy (1200 B.C.).[6] The Hellenes came to use “Europe” (Εὐρώπη) as a name for their territory to the west of the Aegean as distinct from the older lands in Asia Minor.

The ancient Greek civilization is called the “classical” one; later the word “classical” became the source of standards by which subsequent achievements can be measured.[7] “There is a quality of excellence about Ancient Greece that brooks few comparisons.”[8] These peoples (Hellenes) shared the same language (in an oral and written literature) and they recognized a common heritage “Hellenes”, which they did not share with other men. They belonged, as they felt, to “Hellas”.[9] The non-Greeks were “barbarians”. The sharpness, the clarity, and the nimbleness of spirit of the Ancient Greeks, together with their lively imagination, created a unique mean of expression, the Greek language (Ἑλληνικὴν Γλῶσσαν).[10] The achievement and importance of Greece comprehended all sides of life. “The Greeks did more for future civilization than any of their predecessors.”[11] All Europe drew interest on the “capital” Greece laid down, and through Europe the rest of the world has benefited from what Greek offered to human civilization. Alexander, the son of Philip, is one of those historical Greek figures called “Great”. He was a passionate Hellene,[12] who believed Achilles[13] was his ancestor and carried with him on his campaigns a treasured copy of Homer. He had been tutored by Aristotle (a student of Socrates). Alexander the Great had a staggering record of success, even though that he died at the age of 33 years old. The history of Europe is the history of the Western civilization (a Greek-Orthodox civilization).[14] Indisputable, Roman civilization was descended from the earliest Greek (Hellenic) civilization.[15] Today, Europe has changed drastically because of so many influences by different sub-cultures (especially, from the Muslim illegal immigrants). “European, or Western, civilization originated from the fusion of German (barbarian) culture and Roman (Hellenic-Christian) civilization during the Dark Ages from the 5th to the 10th century A.D.”[16] Of course, history repeats itself. There were even monetary and economic unions in Ancient Greece, i.e., “the Common of Euboeans”, in 2nd century B.C.,[17] where they issued a common currency, but they did not last for very long time because of the oppression on their weak member-states.

From the ancient times, Greeks and later other Europeans were expansionists (some aggressive), conquering, colonizing, trading, proselytizing (except the Orthodox), and spreading their cultures. Initially this cultural expansion to the West, with the colonies, owed much to the moral and ethical ancient Greek culture and later was complemented with the Christian faith (the Revealed Truth).[18] St. Constantine the Great (324-340 A.D.) changed the world history more than any other emperor. He founded Christian Europe and he continues to protect it. Also, he was the founder of the Byzantine Empire. This Christianization gave to the European world a unity and cultural cohesiveness that was the ideological foundation of its civilization. Unfortunately, during the 9th century, barbarians from the West (Francs) occupied Rome and imposed their own “innovations” on this homogeneous Hellenic-Orthodox civilization. The schism between West and East (Byzantium) actually started during that period[19] and Europe will never recover spiritually.

In the 14th century, Europe descended into an era of crisis and contraction (occupation) that lasted more than one hundred years and about 400 years for the Balkans. An increasing materialism started and a decreasing spirituality of the Roman Catholic Church, even the “pope himself for a time became a tool of the French king”[20] and the Great Schism between Rome and Constantinople, which took place in 1054 A.D., contributed to the isolation of the Latin church from its other sister churches, the Orthodox Patriarchates of the East.[21] Then, national monarchies started emerging and a new wave of economic expansion and revitalization of European intellectual life began.  Commerce and industry expanded in 15th and 16th century, gold and silver poured into Europe from the New World, prices rose, and a worldwide pattern of trade with Europe was going on. Furthermore, in the 14th century, an intellectual and artistic revival of the Renaissance started in Italy from the Greeks, who were driven out from Constantinople and spread to northern Europe in the 15th and 16th centuries. It was a revival of classical learning and an artistic flowering without parallel in history. During that period, this confidence of the Western world [the South-Eastern part of Europe was occupied by the barbaric Mongolians (the Muslim Seljuk Turks)] found new outlets beyond the frontiers of Europe.

Lastly, this unified Roman Catholic Christian faith of Western Europe was challenged by Martin Luther in 1517 A.D. and Orthodox Churches were expected him to come back to Orthodoxy, but a new dogma, the Protestant Reformation soon became a revolt against the papal ecclesiastical  authority, producing theological variety and denominational atomism and ultimately, assuming the triumph of secularism. The East part of Europe stayed firm to its Traditional Orthodox Christian Faith and even though that the Balkans were under occupation from the barbarians of the East, they survived, due to their strong faith and “secret schools” (κρυφὰ σχολειά) from the Orthodox Church and Monasteries. The net gain of the age of the Reformation went to the rulers of the emerging nation-states, whether Protestant or Catholic, who were already fashioning the absolutism that would dominate the European world from the middle of the 17th to the end of the 18th century. A revolution in science and economics (capitalism and socialism) started and still exists today, transmuting to the cursed globalization. Crises also started from the 17th century, like destructive wars, compounded of religious motives and dynastic ambitions, filled most of the period and brought in civil commotions, revolutions, and two international wars in the 20th century. In summary, according to all historians, “The Greeks are the only people in history who have made four major contributions to human culture and civilization (the spring of Minoan Crete, the summer of fifth-century Athens, the golden autumn of the Alexandrian empire, and the wintry splendour of Byzantium), have so competitive a spirit that they cannot tolerate for long the exceptional brilliance of one man.”[22] The 20th century is also the period of the creation of the European Union and its brainless child, the Economic and Monetary Union. We hope and wish that this Union will not cause the end of the European identity and history before the end of the 21st century. Greece is pushed towards this direction. Unfortunately, “contemporary history is vulnerable to all sorts of political pressure”,[23] but we are responsible to write the Truth, which is the duty of men of letters. “Europe” is a relatively modern idea of the earlier concept of “Christendom” because the entire continent was Christian and its citizens had a common Christian identity.[24]


[1] See, Roberts (1997, p. 1).

[2]In other words, there are no doubts that Greece is the cradle of the world’s civilization. See, Γιῶργος Ἐχέδωρος, «Ἀνατρέπονται τὰ Ἱστορικὰ Κατεστηνένα-Γραπτό 7.270 Ἐτῶν(!)» http://logioshermes.blogspot.com/2011/02/7270.html

[3] See, Roberts (1997, p. 12).

[4] See, Kallianiotis (1995, p. 26).

[5] This comparative advantage is continued even today; Greece is the number one commercial maritime power of the world.

[6] See, Homer, Iliad and Odyssey.

[7] With their wisdom, like: “Moderation in all things” Πᾶν μέτρον ἄριστον) and many others, they set the foundations and advanced the world.

[8] See, Davies (1998, p. 95).

[9] Ancient and current Hellenes had and continue to have the same blood, the same language, and the same religion (ὅμαιμον, ὁμόγλωσσον καὸ ὁμόθρησκον), according to Herodotus Ἡρόδοτος), 5th century B.C. See, Kallianiotis (2007c, p. 179). Also, this can be seen from the cultural continuation of these people and lately, science has proved that modern Greeks have the same DNA as those 30,000 years ago! See, Modern and Ancient  Greeks-Racial  Connection,  http://au.youtube.com/watch?v=eQpK2bbHRLA&feature=related

[10]. See, «Τὸ Μεγαλεῖο τῆς Γλώσσας μας καὶ οἱ Προοπτικές της», Voanerges, No. 41, January-February 2009, pp. 63-67. Dictionaries of European languages have 17-20% of their words, which are of Greek origin. The scientific terminology contains 50-80% of Greek words. Physicist Heisenberg said: «Ἡ θητεία  μου στὴν ἀρχαία ἑλληνικὴ γλῶσσα ὑπῆρξε ἡ σπουδαιότερη πνευμαρτική μου ἄσκηση. Στὴ γλῶσσα αὐτή ὑπάρχει ἡ πληρέστερη ἀντιστοιχία ἀνάμεσα στὴ λέξη καὶ στὸ ἐννοιολογικό της περιεχόμενο…».. Many Nobel laureates, Spanish members of the European parliament, the German professor of Philosophy Pleine, Carl Marx, Engels, Lenin, the French professor and academics Jaquelline de Romilly, to name a few, are those who have said that Greek is the only language that its use has improved science. «Ὦ Φιλισταῖοι, καθῖστε πρῶτα καὶ μάθετε τὰ Ἑλληνικὰ καὶ ὅταν τελειοποιηθεῖτε σ᾽ αὐτά, τότε ἐλᾶτε νὰ τὰ ποῦμε. Μόνον ἐκεῖνοι ποὺ ξέρουν Ἑλληνικὰ συζητοῦν σωστά (K. Marx and F. Engels, Ἅπαντα, Vol. 22, p. 544). See also, Kallianiotis (2010c).

[11]. See, Roberts (1997, p. 43).

[12] .See, Roberts (1997, p. 47). Of course, the current Skopje’s propaganda is historically absolutely wrong, but there are some ignorant governments (“friends” of Greece), which have recognized Skopje as a nation with its usurper name “Macedonia”.  This artificial Slavo-Albano-Bulgarian state can be called only with its historic name as Vardarska.  See also, Kallianiotis (1992, pp. 58-59 and 2010a and b).

[13] See, Homer’s Iliad.

[14] The European civilization was a Hellenic-Orthodox civilization up to the 9th century A.D., before its barbaric invasions from West and North. See, Sakarellos (2005).

[15] See, Jones (1997), Kebric (1997), Vasiliev (1984), and Paparrigopoulos (2003).

[16] See, Blum, Cameron, and Barnes (1970, p. 4).

[17] See, Vranopoulos (1995, p. 168).

[18] “The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified [by Greeks].”  (John 12: 23).

[19] See, Sakarellos (2005).

[20] See, Blum, Cameron, and Barns (1970, p. 5).

[21] An example is the failure of the Synod in Ferrara and Florence (1438/1439). See, Stephanides (1990, pp. 390-396).

[22] See, Bradford (1980, p. 55).

[23] See, Davies (1998, p. 2).

[24] See, Davies (1998, p. 7).

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