Tuesday, January 10, 2012

"Portugal raids pension funds to meet deficit targets"

That's a headline from the UK Telegraph, 2 Dec 2011
Why wasn't it front-page news all over the world? Why isn't Lisbon burning? Are the citizens of Portugal as oblivious to what's going on as we are? Maybe they just don't speak Bureaucrat, so I'll translate:

"The cabinet agreed to transfer the assets ... to the state balance sheet"
The people who actually owned the assets didn't agree. They weren't even consulted.

"The assets will be used to bridge a gap needed to meet the fiscal deficit target..."
I'd like to use someone else's assets to bridge a gap in my fiscal target, but I'm afraid of going to prison for what is commonly called "theft".

"This measure is more than sufficient to meet the budget deficit goal in 2011," said Helder Rosalino, secretary of state for central administration…"

Thanks, suckers.

"Portugal said it had informed the EU and IMF and assured them it would be a “one-off”. However the 2010 budget was met by shifting three pension plans from Portugal Telecom on to the public social security system."
They pinky-swear they'll only make you bend over once, even though they've already done it twice.

"The liabilities don’t count, yet."
This is what in the private sector is known as "accounting fraud".

Pay attention, Greece and now Portugal are traveling a well-worn path, and we're not that far behind them. Our national debt is now greater than our GDP, and if you pay income taxes, you are now a minority. 51% of us are riding in the wagon while the other 49% of us pull it. I've lost hope that we can avoid an economic disaster; the only question in my mind is how long we can put it off.

Use the time you have to learn as much as you can about being self-reliant, and to put away the things that will be more valuable than hyper-inflated dollars.


Jeff Olson ~ Artist/Blacksmith said...

It's strange that this is not in the main stream news. Actually it's not strange at all. Thanks for the info.

Chief Instructor said...

Hungry did this a year back or so. They basically said, "Here's the deal. It's voluntary. Really. You give us your money, and we promise to pay you a retirement income for the rest of your miserable little life. Such a deal! Now, if you don't want to do it, that's fine, too. Oh. Just so you know, if you do that, the part of your salary that is directed from your employer to your personal retirement account will now go to the state, and you will never get those funds. Think of it as a 70% tax! Have a nice day, comrade."

Pelosi and Company held Congressional hearings on the subject a few years ago. Kiss that 401k good bye, baby!