Κανάλια-φερέφωνα, ψεύτες πολιτικοί προσκυνημένοι στα λόμπι, που διαιωνίζουν την Αρρώστια ενός Ναρκομανούς εξαρτημένου από τη Δόση του, δημοσιογράφοι που αμαυρώνουν το δίκιο και τους (πραγματικούς) αγωνιστές και απευθύνονται σ' ένα λαό ψιλοφοβισμένο, ψιλοβολεμένο και ψιλοαποχαυνωμένο. Στο βωμό της <<κανονικότητας>>, του συμφεροντολόγου μικροαστικού βολέματος, ας τα κρύψουμε όλα κάτω απ'το χαλί, να συνεχίσουμε μια αέναη κατρακύλα και να υποθηκεύσουμε τις μελλοντικές γενιές για δεκαετίες.Βλέπεις, <<δεν έχει τέλος ο γολγοθάς στα ατμ>>. Γι' αυτό πίσω στην τρύπα σου, την μισοσκότεινη, μέσα στη γη, να κοιτάζεις το φως σαν τυφλοπόντικας ανίκανος να πιστέψει οτι αξίζει να ονειρεύεσαι έναν διαφορετικό κόσμο. Αλλά τουλάχιστον όλα φανηκαν ξεκάθαρα αυτές τις μέρες. Οι μάσκες πέφτουν.
<<Greek people borrowed too much, spent too much and that's all it comes down to>>, parrots once again a wax face BBC journalist, while crossing one of the ugliest streets of Athens at 5am to prove that the situation in Greece is literally <<that of an ancient tragedy>>. <<Bring cash to the Greeks, they need it>> says another, as if referring to the worst family of dying beggars. Propaganda, in favor of the predominant political and economical system, and irony are two of the main elements of <<major>> journalism today, the extent of which seems almost unbelievable as it practically falsifies and distorts reality for the mere purpose of sustaining the glory of a rotten financial model. It isn't always conscious on behalf of the journalists, as it depends on their personal level of political awareness and ability to see <<out of the box>>.
Regarding all these money accusations being carelessly spewed by news anchormen and business analysts, the truth is that the vast majority of bailout money given to Greece was spent to ensure the survival of private banks, upon which the neoliberal system is based to survive at the brink of every global capitalist crisis. In order for the private European financial sector to be ensured, the method followed was passing the debt from being owed to the private sector to the public sector. But even before the crisis outburst in 2008, out of the money borrowed to Greece (just like to every smaller economy of the Eurozone like Portugal, Ireland, Spain to invest in their economies and compete in the world economy) only a tiny percentage was truly used for reforming its economy, reinforcing the welfare state, tackling unemployment and safeguarding weaker members of society. A corrupted greek elite (political, financial) embezzled money, and hid its growing debt with the help of derivatives designed by major banks. Financial institutions clearly profited from the growing Greek government debt and now the young and the poor are demanded to suffer and shoulder foreign responsibilities through cruel austerity.
There are many other parameters to the Euro crisis. Who among the major voices of information today dares to criticize the political leaderships of Germany, France and the Netherlands for their strangling policies towards the European south all these years, meticulously forcing their exports into their markets while debilitating southern productivity through unethical competition? Given their superior economic and technological starting point, for historical reasons, those countries were always going to win if e.g their wages were kept low enough. Greece par example built up a big trade deficit which was proportional to the German trade surplus. So Greek borrowing was actively encouraged by Germany which is now demanding Greece shoulder the blame for what was a failure of the entire Eurozone. Where was the EU while such relationships of unilateral dependance were being shaped? Where exactly was the spirit of <<even development>> and <<mutual collaboration>> between the people of Europe in all that? Was it a financial mousetrap in the first place? A construction sickly corrupted by neoliberalism to the extent it eventually became a mechanism to perpetuate the dominance of the strong over the weak? Questions remain over economic nationalism and exploitation within the Eurozone, as well as criminal negligence of the needs of the small.
At this point it's worth mentioning the scandal involving top german company Siemens AG, as another example of how the enormous commercial surplus of the European <<saviours>> was being achieved. Throughout the last two decades the company repeatedly bribed greek high state officials to win lucrative state contracts. It also faces charges for money laundering, actively involved in corrupted right-wing governments of the past. This is how Siemens managed to equip the greek army with security and telecommunications systems and aircrafts worth billions of euros. There are numerous such stories of businesses and EU institutions illegally invading local markets within the eurozone. Looking for opportunities to silently and undemocratically manipulate aspects of their economies for the interests of the elite ( Banco Espirito Santo in Portugal, Troika alongside Piraeus bank in Cyprus to name a few).
Examples of how a whole country's economy can be elaborately undermined and mortgaged for the interests of lobbies can be found everywhere on the planet. Will we indifferently accept the capitalist, individualist consciousness of profit as a status quo? As <<unavoidable>> part of <<human nature>>? The hundreds of thousands of people now protesting in Greece and elsewhere, the debates on the economic future of a humanity deeply enslaved by paid labour and its alienation from the things that truly matter in life, are showing the way. Let's face the shadows of the past. Let's get informed. Let's get involved.
Greece is neither a (truly) capitalist, nor an industrialized society. So in a sense, it's one of those societies that some would call <<retarded>>, or <<inferior>>. A society that remained outside the major historical, political and technological evolution of the 15th, 16th, 17th, 18th, 19th centuries, for various reasons. It belongs to those nations, to those <<loosers>> that didn't participate in this specific historical context of colonization, rise of the urban democracy, industrial revolution and capitalism. And also to those parts of the world that never became someone's protectorate for oil, or diamonds, or gold. Yes, different histories lead to different cultures, mentalities and (our favorite word of course) economies! Greece is a very small and feeble (financially) country, with a long history of mistrust and disobedience towards the political system and its representatives. One of those places that have a hard time catching up with the strong, self-assured guys. In our world, that so much resembles a primary school yard, some are forced to play the role of the victim, for the good luck and, let's say it, the sadistic satisfaction of the strong guys. Who can safely disagree that large-scale societal structures differ so much?
But for all these reasons Greece is still a somewhat humanitarian corner of planet earth. Not a cynical shit. One of the few left where still, people are not just numbers. Where, simply put, you're more than your income. Where phenomena such as abandoning old friends because they're << under-achievers>>, social stratification based on the price of clothes you can afford to wear and competition on who owns the fanciest car and visitits the Maldives more often are not hypocriticaly ignored, but genuinely disregarded, as aspects of human shallowness, by the vast majority at least. Where banners such as "faster, better, stronger" and "push yourself to the limits" and "are you beach-body ready?" are considered ridiculous. What makes someone human is something far more than his flesh and bones on a Cartesian level of <<cold logic>>, and what gives value to that very person's existence is something far more than the content of his pocket. Yes, it's something unfathomable. A mystery. And "mystery", is a greek word.
Now this neoliberal menace that degrades people into <<great-achievers>> who sell out whole people's destinies and then celebrate by drinking and vomitting and having emotionless random sex is the necessary threshold that could lead to societies such as those envisioned by Orson Welles. Profit and power deification have long played their roles, implicitly forming and shaping consciousness in the north-western world, to the degree that many people in NYC, London, Berlin and elsewhere literally wander around in a constant state of panic, chasing the big money, like walking cash-machines. Supporting fanatically this very system that uses and destroys them, unconscious carriers of the long monarchic and oligarchic ideologies deriving directly from the medieval kingdomship tradition of western europe, the historical background aforementioned and this always lurking, inherent lust for superiority and power of human ego (call it agressive instincts, if you like Freud). In other words, the situation in the north-western world, is the perfectly fertile soil for the rise of this dystopia.
In my opinion, what has really come to the surface in Europe, is a very interesting reflection of the constant battle between the <<weak>> and the <<strong>>, that has never really ended on this continent (or anywhere else?). A quest for the imposition of one on another. It's a blatant revelation, whether we like it or not : political union, compassion and collaboration between the people of Europe were superficial, wishful thinking. It's all about power and money. At this point it is interesting to remember that EU traces its origins from the "European Coal and Steel Community". Coal and Steel. Pretty much the way Christine Lagarde and Wolfgang Schäuble address the speech to Greek prime minister and minister of economics. Cause left-wing paraphonies that question the neoliberal status quo and dare to ask the question <<is there democracy in Europe today?>>, <<what's going on with all those unelected technocrats moving the strings?>> must be silenced at once.
For that reason, an elaborate narrative, a one-sided propaganda predominates on mass media and politician speeches : << Greeks are immature, they borrowed money, spent it, never payed taxes and now the strong must punish them>>. (How protestant, really?!) It's interesting, how easily and blindly it is assumed that the European creditors are the right ones vis-a-vis Greece. It's very interesting, and even amusing, perhaps, how whole nations are seen as nothing but businesses (successful or not) and treated accordingly. Black and white moralities. Vertical. Abrupt. (Reminds me of another era of eu history, and of early childhood psychoanalytically). Interesting, how visions of even development and political union were so deeply infested by neoliberalism that today their very thought leads to a spontaneous smirking.
We are experiencing moments of truth, we are observing how human nature evolves (or degrades) throughout the years, as things inescapably change. They ought to, everything is a circle in life and political systems can be no exception. Prevailing systems are reflections of prevailing human consciousness. Individualism has played its highly addictive role and has borne its fruit. Now a collective consciousness must eventually be born. Otherwise, no one guarantees that your kids won't be microchipped, one day, and that day may actually arrive pretty soon. In the meantime, this is one of those moments of birth, at the rise of the new Millenium. Something is desperately trying to be born, this occasion here at the Medi-terranean basin is simply one to accelerate the process of labour. Even if it fails to awaken a fast asleep humanity, more such <<coincidences>> will occur in the future. Hopefully, something will move. Let's see what the future holds.
<< Greeks are immature people, they borrowed money, spent it, never payed taxes and now the strong must punish them>>. (How protestant, really?!) It's interesting to observe how political propagandas are slowly being built, based on narratives playing on the loop and repeated by media. It's interesting, how many people blindly assume the European creditors are the right ones vis-a-vis Greece. It's very interesting, and even amusing, perhaps, how whole nations are seen as nothing but businesses (successful or not) and treated accordingly. Black and white moralities. Vertically. Abruptly. (Reminds me of another era of eu history, and of early childhood psychoanalytically). Interesting, how visions of even development and political union were so deeply infested by neoliberalism that today their very thought leads to a spontaneous smirking. Moments of truth, how human nature evolves (or degrades) throughout the years, but a collective consciousness must eventually be born. Otherwise, no one guarantees that your kids won't be microchipped, one day. Let's see what the future holds.
Στην πλατεία Σαν Μάρκο, οι Ιταλοί κάθονται σε ψάθινες καρέκλες, γύρω από στρογγυλά τραπεζάκια με τους αχνιστούς καφέδες τους και τις εφημερίδες αγκαλιά.
Τους θυμάμαι, τέσσερα χρόνια μετά. Να κουβεντιάζουν, φωνάζοντας δυνατά και να γελούν. Ντυμένοι και περιποιημένοι στην τρίχα (ή για την ακρίβεια στην έλλειψη αυτής, καθ'οτι αποτριχωμένοι και με βγαλμένα φρύδια οι περισσότεροι) λιάζονται για να ρουφήξουν αυτή την υπέροχη, φωτεινή ενέργεια του πρωινού. Όλα τα προσωπικά, όλα τα οικογενειακά, όλα τα ερωτικά, όλα στη φόρα. Το πλήρες ανοιγμα απέναντι στην κοινότητα-έως και σε βαθμό υπερβολής. Να δίνουν και να παίρνουν τα ciao bella και τα ciao bello! Υποκριτικά, ίσως, κάποιες φορές? Μπορεί. Όμως πάρχει ανθρώπινη ζωντάνια. Χρώμα. Θετικότητα. Το να παίρνεις τον Στάρμπακς στο χέρι και να καθεσαι στο ξύλινο σκαμπώ χωρίς πλάτη για 10 λεπτά, συζητώντας στο κινητό για μπιζνες μ'αυτή την μονότονη, άχρωμη και ρομποτοειδή ομιλία και ελέγχοντας την ατζέντα να δεις μήπως έχεις χρόνο να δεις τους κολλητούς για 45 λεπτά σε δύο εβδομάδες, ούτε ζωντάνια το λες, ούτε χρώμα, ούτε θετικότητα. (Και αναρρωτιέσαι, είναι ποτέ δυνατη η Ευρωπαϊκή σύγκλειση, η ενοποίηση ανθρώπων με τόσο διαφορετικές κουλτούρες? Θα μπορέσουν άραγε αυτά που μας ενώνουν να υπερνικήσουν αυτά που μας χωρίζουν? ) Εν όψει <<grexit>> λοιπόν, ας νιώσω λίγο Ιταλός - έστω και παροδικά, έστω και στην καλοκαιρινή θερμοκρασία των 15 βαθμών Κελσίου.