According to bestselling author Naomi Klein, the systemic use of shock and fear by the power elites to undermine vulnerable communities is very much evident in post-bailout Greece. From the rise of racism to the sell-off of the country’s oil and natural gas resources – much of what will shape Greece’s immediate future are, she argues, predictable consequences of the politics of austerity
Naomi Klein is the author of controversial New York Times bestseller The Shock Doctrine, which has been referred to as “the master narrative of our time”. The book argues that business interests and powerful nations exploit shocks in the form of natural disasters, economic problems, or political turmoil, as an opportunity to aggressively restructure vulnerable countries’ economies. She posits that because ultra-capitalistic policies are harmful to the majority of citizens, they cannot be implemented without a shock, ranging from media-hyped anxiety to police torture, that squashes popular resistance.
The Barbarians are online and inside the gates. The Barbarian, the anarcho-tourist review from Athens is out now. Read here:
A hard hitting documentary which shows the plight of refugees and migrants in recession hit Athens, Into The Fire is a film with a difference.
Shot and edited with sensitivity and compassion, it doesn’t pull its punches and makes for harrowing viewing in parts. It is the product of crowd funding, dedication, self-sacrifice and a burning sense of justice.
On 21 April, Into the Fire is simultaneously released on websites, blogs and other platforms around the internet. The film will be available in various languages, including Albanian, Czech, Danish, Dutch, French, German, Greek, Italian and Spanish. There are a number of public screenings planned in several countries in Europe and Northern America. To participate in the release or organise a screening see http://intothefire.org/publish
This strategy is being used to maximise the audience, in the hope that the audience will become active participants, commentators and amplifiers when it comes to opposing the conditions visited on the victims in the story.
Capitalism Is The Crisis: Radical Politics in the Age of Austerity examines the ideological roots of the “austerity” agenda and proposes revolutionary paths out of the current crisis. The film features original interviews with Chris Hedges, Derrick Jensen, Michael Hardt, Peter Gelderloos, Leo Panitch, David McNally, Richard J.F. Day, Imre Szeman, Wayne Price, and many more!
The 2008 “financial crisis” in the United States was a systemic fraud in which the wealthy finance capitalists stole trillions of public dollars. No one was jailed for this crime, the largest theft of public money in history.
Instead, the rich forced working people across the globe to pay for their “crisis” through punitive “austerity” programs that gutted public services and repealed workers’ rights.
Austerity was named “Word of the Year” for 2010.
This documentary explains the nature of capitalist crisis, visits the protests against austerity measures, and recommends revolutionary paths for the future.
Christian Fuchs (original source: http://fuchs.uti.at/860/)
Written for the Greek magazine ΒΑΒΥΛΩΝΙΑ (Babylonia)
Times of crisis are times, where ideologies tend to flourish. We can take the current ongoing crisis as an example.
1. Dangerous Immigrants?
UK Politics enter the stage.
In Britain, fears of illegal immigrants taking away British jobs and receiving social services without paying taxes have been massively stirred. Home Secretary Theresa May said: “The aim is to create here in Britain a really hostile environment for illegal migration […] Within the EU, in a wider context, people are increasingly recognising the need to prevent the abuse of free movement”. And not only immigrants are perceived as the problem causing the crisis, but also the unemployed: “I think it’s time to look back at some of the things we’ve already achieved. Welfare reform, so never again will it make sense to sit at home instead of getting a job”.
After the massive police ’actions’ against migrants and drug users in Athens, it seems that the next target of the Greek state is the homeless people of Athens. According to the public statement of the “Solidarity for all” citizens’ initiative, the police gathers homeless people in order to check their papers, transfer them to the police station of Amygdaleza and other remote police stations, and then abandons them.
As Chr.Provezis, the spokesman of the ”Solidarity for all” initiative told the newspaper “Eleftherotypia”, “more than 10 homeless people who sleep in spaces at the Athenian historical center, around Omonia andPsirri districts, speak of having been forced in the particular procedure.”
The representative of the Initiative visited the homeless at KEAD (Homeless Center Athens) and argues that “some homeless people say that they were gathered from Koumoundourou square and Piraeus avenue and then transferred to have their papers controlled at police stations in Oropos, Amygdaleza, Vari and Elliniko, where the police abandoned them after conducting the papers’ check. ”
The homeless’ reported the event to the “Solidarity for all” initiative, and also reported that their “clothes, blankets and mattresses” were lost, believing that they were deliberatelly “thrown away by the police”.
This evening, in Manolada near Patra in Greece, while 200 workers in an agricultural venture demanded their salaries to be paid, one of the three representatives of their employer whom they were negotiating with opened fire against them, injuring 20-30 according to reports. The owner of the business has been arrested. The police are still searching for the managers that shot the labourers. According to the same reports, at least 6 of the injured are in critical condition.
The farms in Manolada mainly produce strawberries. The workers employed in these farms, under slavery-like working conditions, are immigrants, mostly from Bangladesh. There have been several cases in the past where different kinds of mistreat or even raw violence has been used against the workers.
Today April 17th. people from the political group Crisis Mirror (Copenhagen, Denmark), took the initiative to make a solidarity action in support of the Athens Indymedia. Our action is included in the campaign for the support of Athens Indymedia, which is censored from the Greek state as well as with two other independent radical radio stations (98 FM and Radio Entasi).
Athens Indymedia is the biggest portal in Greece offering counter information and news regarding most of the political actions that are taking place in Greece. The site has been and still is an invaluable tool for the antagonistic movement in Greece. Here you can find calls for actions and events, a forum for discussions, political statements and analysis from groups and individuals all over Greece. The direct information with no intermediates has played a huge role and the reason why so many people embraced this political experiment on the Internet.
As of the 11th of April, noon, the dean of the Polytechnic School effectively replaced the police and the judges, by cutting the internet connection for both self-organized anti-information projects, following orders from the minister of public order Dendias. This is a repressive tactic and censorship which is used only by authoritarian regimes (Syria, Iran and North Korea). It’s time for all of us who moderate, publish or use the media mentioned above, as well as for all of us who stand in solidarity to the right of free expression, to self-organize and act in order to defend our given rights.
The solidarity assembly that took place on Saturday, is directing an open call for solidarity actions across Greece and internationally, during the week between the 15th and 21st of April, to support both anti-information projects. We fight for the right to express ourselves freely from inside NTUA’s campus. In the city of Athens, on Monday 15 April, a protest will take place in the central square of Zografou Campus at 9.00.
The escrache protests in Spain organised by the Platform of Mortgage Victims are quickly getting to the rotten core of a technical government in all but name. Despite the Popular Party’s attempts to demonise them in the press they continue to gather support, pointing the way for the rest of Europe.
As David Cameron prepares to promote yet another housing boom in Britain, we would do well to pay some notice to our neighbours in Spain, who are currently suffering the dire consequences of a bursting bubble releasing its slime all over their lives. When all else fails (and it’s hard to think of much that’s not failing under Osborne) a housing bubble can do wonders for a dismal government. From the mid-1990s until the late 2000s, the fantasy of permanent expansion served subsequent Spanish governments well, with GDP growth remaining around 4% and an unemployment rate that was slashed by half in less than a decade.