The "lamestream" U.S. media is still playing catch up with the Greek financial crisis as it swallows the bankster's mantra that there is no bank run occurring in Greece or other southern European countries. It begs the question: Are they stupid, lazy, incompetent, or just going along with what their corporate masters want us all to believe? Sadly, this has to include NPR and public television, who appear to be in a race to the bottom in order to avoid upsetting corporate lobbyists who want to see taxpayer funding ended for anyone who is critical of the establishment's worldview. In reality, there has been a never-ending, accelerating run on the Greek banking system since the beginning of 2010 when British newspapers, like the Guardian, started reporting on wealthy Greeks who were bailing out of their country and making huge investments in the London property market.
If the U.S. media really wanted to know what's happening to the Greek economy, they would do better to follow what the top 1 percent of the nation's financial elite are doing with their money instead of showing video footage of Athens street protests or interviewing the walking dead of the Greek political classes.
Tens of billions of Euros have been silently and steadily withdrawn from the bottom of the Greek banking system by the nation's financial and business leaders at the very same time as taxpayer-supported funds from European Central Bank and others has been very publicly poured in at the top. This is no more than a clever monetary conjuring trick with the Greek banks playing the role of a gigantic sieve, thus giving time for the super rich to get their financial ducks lined up in a row and their funds into safe havens overseas before finally pulling the rug from beneath the Greek 99 percent.
There has seen a serious acceleration of this process in 2012, with a 3.6 percent decline in Greek domestic deposits in the first two months alone and over 13% since August of last year. Even the less financially sophisticated middle classes are now joining the stampede out of the country. Greeks everywhere are indulging in the same pre-devaluation behavior as the super rich. Individuals and businesses are paying off imports early before their currency devalues, liquidating assets and putting their cash into foreign banks and commercial/residential property overseas.
Bloomberg News has revealed that 6 percent of all London properties valued over $3.2 million are presently being sold to Greeks for cash -- this is double the volume from a year ago. Many wealthy people are not just investing but are actually moving to the UK to live and start businesses -- which raises fears that they will not be returning to Greece any time soon to head any much-needed economic recovery.
The feeding frenzy for expensive London properties by Greeks has reached extraordinary levels. The signature investment property at No. 1 Hyde Park in Knightsbridge has seen no less than three apartments recently sold for between $40-50 million each. Bidding wars between half a dozen or more Greek buyers for the same property are not uncommon. But it's not just residential space; it's also commercial property and entire corporate headquarters that are moving to London.
The British government, like others in Europe, is working on secret contingency plans in case of a Greek exit from the Euro. Home Secretary Theresa May said that 'work was ongoing' to restrict immigration from Greece if there was a financial collapse.
A case of shutting the stable door after the Greek 1 percent have voted with their cash and far more significant than the result of any future elections.
How long before the remaining 99 percent of Greeks realize that their financial and business captains have already left the sinking ship? When they do, who will bear the brunt of their frustration and anger? This is the endgame for the Greek economic crisis and the first falling Euro domino.