Will You Be Next?

Niemoeller

In Cyprus, they stole the savings of private citizens to cover their own bad debts.[1]

In Britain, they are stealing the pensions of the wives and widows of expat UK citizens, under the guise of ‘austerity measures’.[2]

In America, they are stealing from the pension funds of government retirees, to stave off their own self-induced default on the national debt.[3]

Do you think your savings are safe?

When will they be coming for yours?

[1] “Bank of Cyprus depositors could lose up to 60% of their savings” Guardian, march 30th 2013

[2] “Expat Wives and Widows to be Stripped of their UK Pension Rights” Fabulous 103Fm, May 2013

[3] “US Treasury secretary says he has begun tapping federal retiree pension fund to avoid default” Star Tribune, May 20th 2013*

*My thanks to WiseWebWoman for the ‘heads-up’ on this one.

5 Replies to “Will You Be Next?”

  1. Actually RJ, it seems to me that the policy being adopted in Cyprus is pretty progressive.

    Other European countries have tried to pay for the financial crisis by penalising the already poor… cutting essential health and social services (which are disproportionately relied-upon by those on low-incomes) and slashing public sector jobs.

    In Cyprus, on the other hand, they seem to have gone down the road of a wealth tax. If you ask me, that’s brilliant. The first €100k (US$130,000) in the bank is untouched. A percentage of all the money you have above that level is then taxed.

    We both know that the world needs a radically reformed financial system if we’re ever going to narrow the inequality gap. But as a stop-gap measure, I genuinely can’t see a better option for the Cypriot government (or indeed any government in that position… make those who can best afford it, pay for the crisis).

  2. And of course to take it a step further, what’s it all worth anyway? The coffers are empty. Plant your food….while we still have a planet. And water.
    *sigh*
    XO
    WWW

  3. Jim – originally, the plan was to steal around 7% from every bank account in Cyprus. It was approved by the EU, the IMF and the European Central Bank and was shelved due only, I believe, to the public outcry. While I agree we need to spread the wealth more evenly, and I’d have no sympathy at all with Russian oligarchs losing their corruptly acquired millions, what has transpired in Cyprus sets a precedent for governments to help themselves to people’s savings whenever they feel the need to do so. (Despite the worthless reassurances of Germany’s Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble). Many Cypriots, even the not-so-wealthy (and, let’s face it, 100,000 euros isn’t considered ‘wealth’ these days. A two-bed flat in Limassol would set you back 3-4 times that much), would have more than that in the bank – from a recent house sale, or a retired couple banking a lump sum pension payout, etc..
    No, Jim, let’s tax the wealthy more, but do it at source, and leave ordinary folks hard-earned savings alone. If you or I did it, we’d be facing a long jail term.

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