14N Solidarity to European General Strike: An update from Greece

Posted: November 15, 2012 in opinion
Tags: , , ,

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(Flyer distributed during the 14N European General Strike solidarity demo in Edinburgh)

Last Wednesday, the Greek parliament voted in favour of its 3rd “austerity package” by 153 to 147 votes.

A severe hit on people’s lives – suffering for the lower strata: Wages, pensions and social services are slashed; a dramatic increase in unemployment (25.4% as opposed to 11.3% at 2010 according to Eurostat) affecting more than 50% of the young population; Greece’s assets are being privatised to scandalous amounts; a decline in GDP of about 20% within 4 years.

A crisis of democracy: Freedom of speech and civil rights are being abolished; journalists are subjected to political censorship; the police are torturing demonstrators; minorities are exposed to discrimination, violence, and ‘public humiliation’ by the state.

Rise in popularity of a Neo-Nazi party: Golden Dawn has historically been a gang with long-time strong connections to unofficial state mechanisms for repressing political dissent. They take advantage of the Greek people’s disillusionment with the ruling parties to justify violent attacks on poor immigrants, gay and queer individuals and activists.

The Debt is NOT the root of the crisis – neoliberal globalization is: For the case of Greece and other countries of the European South, this crisis stems from their dependence on metropolitan capitalist centres intensified after entering the European Union (EU) and the Euro. This led to the gradual dismantling of their agricultural and industrial sectors. Within a system of free and liberalised markets, such as the EU, increasing competitiveness for the stronger countries means continuous loss of economic and political sovereignty for the weaker countries. The EU was created to serve the interests of the ruling economic and political elites.

The way out: Solutions to the crisis can be either for the benefit of the elites, or for the benefit of the people. The people of Greece will only benefit by a programmatic exit from neoliberal globalization: (1) Unilateral write-off of the total Debt (2) exit from the EU (3) socialisation of the banks and the key sectors of the economy towards a self-reliant economy (4) establish networks of cooperation with other countries based on solidarity and mutuality instead of competition and exploitation (5) move towards a liberatory society where the people have direct control on the economic, political and social realm.

Greece was just the beginning; Spain, Portugal and Italy are following… Who is next?

ORGANISE at work, neighbourhoods and places of education to build popular movements and take power.

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