The rhetoric of re­cov­ery

Kathimerini English - - Front Page -

The fo­cus of the gov­ern­ment’s rhetoric lately has been on rais­ing hopes and ex­pec­ta­tions. The key­word is “re­cov­ery,” but the re­al­ity leads to very dif­fer­ent con­clu­sions. It is not pos­si­ble that the gov­ern­ment’s eco­nomic staff is un­aware this is im­pos­si­ble with such heavy tax­a­tion and so­cial se­cu­rity con­tri­bu­tions, and with pub­lic sec­tor in­sur­ance and wage costs ex­ceed­ing 50 per­cent. With this in mind, talk of eco­nomic growth and re­cov­ery is just a mid­sum­mer night’s dream, if not cyn­i­cally de­cep­tive. The pol­icy of over­tax­a­tion of the con­sis­tently ac­tive pop­u­la­tion – that which is bear­ing the brunt of the cri­sis – was not dic­tated by Greece’s in­ter­na­tional cred­i­tors. It was the choice of the gov­ern­ment, which did not want to con­tinue with aus­ter­ity and re­forms else­where, to opt for tax­a­tion above all other mea­sures. The gov­ern­ment must re­al­ize that in­vok­ing a re­cov­ery is not enough – it must change its pol­icy mix.

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