2011/06/06

Dharma and dollars

Ultimately, the Buddha encouraged us to cultivate the attitude of non-attachment towards wealth. Our wealth might increase or it might decrease, but our minds should never be disturbed by the change. That is the ultimate wealth in Buddhism: to succeed in detaching oneself completely from greed, hatred and ignorance, the cause of all our suffering. bangkokpost


Escaping the Clutches

In today's Europe, the people are no longer in control. Instead, politicians have become slaves to financial institutions and the markets. We are partly to blame -- and changes are urgently needed to nurse European democracy back to health. spiegel


Wasn’t a panic

What happened Monday wasn’t a panic, precisely: It was more of a pre-panic. Think of it like a sharp tremor before The Big One: A taste of what a true sovereign debt panic would be like.


Debt Crisis Hits Italy

Just a few weeks ago, the rate on Italian 10-year bonds was just two percentage points higher than comparable German paper. On Monday, the difference grew to three percent and on Tuesday it reached 3.5 percent. spiegel


The beginning of the end

There is a growing sense of despair in Brussels. Unlike previous attacks on the euro project, the latest downgrade of Portugal's debt by the ratings agency Moody's feels like the beginning of the end. guardian.co.uk (Wednesday 6 July 2011 09.01 BST)


Outrageously high interest rates

offering more loans, especially at outrageously high interest rates as Brussels intends to do, fails to tackle the core problem, it only makes the situation worse. guardian


A Fatally Flawed Recovery Plan

Greece needs even more money -- EU officials estimate that a new bailout will cost over 100 billion euros rather than the previously assumed 60 billion. It will get the aid, even though the rescue strategy adopted so far seems doomed. The economy is shrinking, and ambitious privatization plans are illusory. spiegel

Note: "Companies like DEI or the partially state-owned Hellenic Petroleum are still viewed as workers' paradises. The roughly 2,500 employees of the oil company are paid 17.8 monthly salaries a year, and even drivers and doormen earn annual salaries upwards of €90,000."


How Goldman Sachs Helped Greece to Mask its Debt

Goldman Sachs helped the Greek government to mask the true extent of its deficit with the help of a derivatives deal that legally circumvented the EU Maastricht deficit rules. At some point the so-called cross currency swaps will mature, and swell the country's already bloated deficit. spiegel

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