You said it, you said it all.

I just saw a fantastic article on the EconomicDisasterArea website. I reminded me of a scene from Forrest Gump. When Gump talks about the war in Vietnam, but the microphone is turned off and nobody can hear him. Here is what that speech was about if it would have been about the Icelandic economy, and the general situation in Iceland. And this time everyone can hear it.  Great article Dadi, and kudos for the link.

Here is the whole article from the EDA website:

My life and the life of so many of my friends has taken an extreme turn in the last year.

Now we can safely say with the benefit of hindsight that the economic collapse of Iceland has been a life-changing event for just about everyone.

Old truths have been demolished, new governments have been formed, old kings have been dethroned and so much planning has gone out the window.

As my girlfriend and I look at our mortgage as August melts into September we see it has grown 25% in the last three years. If it keeps growing the way it has since we signed on, it will have doubled in ten. Sixteen million owed to the bank will become thirty two with thirty years still running.

That is the beauty of price-indexation for you.  The solution that has allowed every government in Iceland since the early eighties to stick their heads in the sand and neglect serious economic issues.

A friend who is 25 has been talking to her bank about solutions regarding her foreign currency mortgage. Starting with a loan around 45 million ISK, it is now above 100 million.

She said the last payment she made a year ago before getting it “frozen” was over 400.000 ISK. She said she felt stupid to pay it.

What sort of future can we expect to build in a country like this? She and her spouse have two options on the table, bankruptcy and moving abroad. Others, facing these kinds of problems as well as marital difficulties find it impossible to divorce.

Two out of three of our friends who lost their jobs last winter have gotten new ones. But they are working more, being paid less and now one is being let go again because of “restructuring” in his company. The third one is still looking.

Everyone is waiting. What is going to happen this winter?

I for one am going back to school. Tomorrow I will start studing for a master’s in International Relations at the University of Iceland’s Political Studies department. My reasoning for this new venture is to build towards a future where I can participate in warning people about the ills that have plagued Iceland. Meanwhile I will be coaching football to put some bread on the table and service the price-indexation beast.

I am continuously amazed by the number of visits to this site. I know I have had my ups and downs in maintaining it and keeping it updated but it is a labour of love and definitely provides no food for the monsters of price-indexation. There are a couple of good sites out there in English that are well-maintained. I encourage you to read them too. Check out IceNews, IWR, Iris at HuffPost, Iceland Review, Newsfrettir, IcelandTalks and the Grapevine.

Please continue to check in, there are many layers to the Iceland story and hopefully I can provide some insight without resorting to stories of “hardy bunch” and “nation of fishermen” and “fire and ice”. I have yet to tell the story of myself as a banker, and when the distance is appropriate where I can seperate between the blurry lines of recent memory then it will come.

The Vikings of Iceland exist only in our minds today. Although some people here act cool and others claim the elfs have told them to be kind to the earth and everything will be fine, we are in reality just a group of people who have been raped and plundered and are left insecure, hurt and confused.

I’m excited to be back at school. I recently asked myself when I’d been the happiest in life and the answer was in college so there I go. The combination of meeting new people and exploring ideas is irresistible and I’ll try to make sure my life revolves around being a “college student” from now on. And if I cannot pay my mortgage then it doesn’t matter, I did not sign up for this crap in which we Icelanders are in up to our knees and I will continue to meet it head on.


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