Friday, 17 February 2012

Friday 17/02/12

Greece won’t really exist in a few years, but let’s not pretend this will be a bad thing.

Right now, several thousand Greeks take to the streets every night, burning down buildings, banks, shops, monuments, etc, attacking the police and each other and generally acting very Mediterranean and angry. The reason behind this is that they don’t want to pay back all the money they’ve borrowed over the years. They actually want more money from Europe to bail them out, but they don’t want to comply to any austerity measures that might give the lenders a slim chance they’ll ever get paid back.

Anyway, as I said, everyone is very angry. Grrr. They hate the Government, they hate the police, they hate Europe, America, everyone who conspired against them to put them in this position, really. Because that’s what happened, you see.

Below is a picture from Sunday’s riots. It shows some police bro with a cool-looking straight nose (I’m assuming that at least one of his parents is not Greek) fighting back at some old geezer. Apparently the old geezer is some left-wing politician, who made his name during the World War II Resistance. I’m not here to judge the incident, I’ve only seen this still and I don’t know what happened. I actually saw the picture on facebook, when a friend of mine ‘liked’ it.

On facebook, the picture was posted by a guy called Harry Klynn, who’s this Greek actor/comedian type. He’s been famous/active for several decades and he’s generally well-respected. The comment he wrote when he posted the picture was this (I’m translating part of it; all of it can be seen below in Greek):

Who’s the brat who’s grabbed Manolis Glezos [that’s the old geezer] by the throat? Who’s this fascist who’s raising his arm to smack Manolis Glezos? What will this bastard claim? That the 90-year-old Resistance hero attacked him? What type of fascist-shit-snakes [this word is his own invention, I assume] are born in this fucking system? Glezos, you bastard? Your grandfather, you fascist FAGGOT?

Ποιο είναι το κωλόπαιδο που έχει αρπάξει τον Μανώλη Γλέζο από το λαιμό; Ποιο είναι αυτό το φασισταριό που σηκώνει το κουλό του για να χτυπήσει τον Μανώλη Γλέζο;
Τι θα ισχυριστεί αυτό το μπατσοκάθικο; Ότι του επιτέθηκε ο 90χρονος ήρωας της Αντίστασης; Τι φασιστοσκατόφιδα γεννάει αυτό το γαμημένο το σύστημα; Το Γλέζο ρε τσόγλανε; Τον παππού σου ρε καραφασιστοπουσταριό;

Between Tuesday when this picture was posted and Friday morning, 19,373 people had clicked that they ‘Like’ it. 4,791 had ‘Shared’ it. There were 1,473 comments. A lot of these comments were adding to the insults. Turns out that the policeman must definitely be gay, you guys, and if not, he’s definitely foreign.

I did not like the word faggot used there. I don’t like it that it’s acceptable by somebody in the public eye to use words like that to berate others in the year 2012. I don’t like it that well-known people can go on TV and use this and other similar words without anyone complaining about it. I don’t like it that racist and homophobic language are equally acceptable. That people can feature in mainstream media, using words like faggot (poustis), sissy (aderfi), nigger (arapis) and ape (pithikos) to describe others. Whether it’s done in a serious or a ‘humorous’ way. I loathe that no one calls them out on it.

I should add, I don’t care what anonymous morons comment on a social media sites. I’m sure if you go on YouTube or any other messageboard based in the US or the UK, the comments by the anonymous hoi polloi are quite similar. The only difference is that in Greece, you don’t have to be anonymous or hiding behind avatars and profile names to be explicitly homophobic and racist. You can do it proudly everywhere. And that’s what perpetuates this sort of attitude and makes it seem acceptable.

These are all reasons why I’m not behind Greece, in anything they strive for politically, financially, or culturally. I think they need to deal with their backward and offensive attitudes first, before demanding the respect of the rest of the world.


william price said...

The problem is the Euro, the sooner out of it the better. Remember Iceland? How broke they got, all those rating agencies recently ramped their status back up to being grrreat.
The way its going in Greece, recovery will be far longer due to the Euro and the huge investment banks.
Thoroughly agree that the anger of the common man is misguided when its littered with discriminatory abuse.

London Preppy said...

william: I agree that everything will pass. Everything always does. Thanks for the comment

yoshi said...


This has nothing to do with the Euro. Greece spent itself deep into debt and lied about it. Euro - no euro - it wouldn't of matter. And Iceland has just stabilized after 5 years of taking the very same steps being asked for of Greece. But it will take decades for Iceland to fully recover.

There are many beautiful things of Greece - its dysfunctional government and the attitudes of its citizens aren't two of them (present company excepted).

James said...

Or you could say that European banks foolishly lent a lot of money to Greece without checking thoroughly where it was going. Now they are requiring the Greek government to "punish" their people with austerity measures in the hope of paying back the money. Even if the people aren't very smart, this probably isn't going to work in a democracy. They will just elect a populist on a platform of "default, screw the banks, leave the Euro".

Luke said...

It seems like profligacy and dishonesty / incompetence caused this. Really though I doubt impoverishing public sector workers and pensioners is a viable solution.

Was wondering why tax evasion is so common especially for professionals and especially those who are earning money from the state.

kim said...

Come back to Australia LP, you KNOW we love you here.

London Preppy said...

kim: In Greece, the would double her contract $$$

Superchilled said...

I love it when you get emotional about something. Your writing just gets better. Love it.
I just wish the content wasn't required.