Skip to comments.A Different Take on Greek Riots (What's Really Going On)
Posted on 05/07/2010 3:36:40 PM PDT by RightOnline
We've all been watching the video of the Greek riots of late. The coverage, even on Fox News, seems to be clearly implying that the Greek citizenry are angry over upcoming spending cuts due to Greece's horrific financial situation, need for EU bailout monies, etc. In effect, we are being told that this is just a bunch of spoiled brats who are used to sucking off of the public teat and are angry that their cushy pensions, etc. may be cut even slightly.
Well, according to a conversation I had this afternoon, this is anything but the case.
I have a good friend in Massachusetts who is Greek (artist by profession). Born in Greece, parents moved to the U.S. some years ago and are successful restauranteurs. Dual citizenship....Greek, U.S. Their ties to the "home country" are very wide and very deep. They speak Greek around the house and the restaurant...you get the idea.
According to my friend, what is REALLY happening is something completely different from what we're being told, and also explains why Washington is very concerned. I don't claim this to be the gospel truth, I only report to you, my fellow FReepers and lurkers, what I've been told by someone close to the situation whom I trust.
They're fed up. They're fed up with a corrupt, Socialist government. They're fed up with cronyism. They're fed up with rights and freedoms being taken away. They're fed up with watching their national treasure being squandered. They're fed up with the fact that their voices are not being heard and have NOT been heard for years.
Greece is the cradle of Democracy, and they are a fiercely proud people. We've all been led to believe (yes, including me) that they drank the Socialist Kool-Aid and sold their collective soul to the State for a false sense of security.
Instead.....I'm trying to choose my words carefully here......it seems that what we are seeing is something akin to our Tea Party movement, but VERY angry and even violent and not organized. Their citizens are furious. The announced cuts to pensions, etc. were not the 'cause'; merely a straw that broke the camel's back.
IF what my friend says is true, then I will say I have a whole different perspective on what is going on there, and even a new respect for the Greek citizens themselves. No, NO one has the right to torch a bank and kill employees inside. Violence is NOT the answer. That said, I think we can all agree that a citizenry will only take so much before they finally take to the streets.
I'm not Greek and have never set foot in the country. I merely pass this on as (rather impassioned) input from someone I respect and trust and who is very, very close to the reality that is Greece today. If this is closer to the truth, and if the same is inevitable soon in Portugal, Spain, and Italy......could this possibly signal the beginning of the end of European-style Socialism? Is that why Obama & Co. are actually watching events in Greece so closely, possibly concerned that the same could happen here?
Food for thought. I say we give the Greeks the benefit of a doubt, and I encourage the media to dig much deeper and speak with people on the streets there to better understand their anger and frustration. We just may find that we have far more in common with them than we have differences.
Sadly, I don’t believe that.
I think they are rioting because they want more pie!
bump for later read...
I live in the largest Greek neighborhood in North America. Greeks are very defensive about how they are portrayed, so I am not surprised your friend told you this. This is not a protest for LIBERTY, but one for keeping a lifestyle that can't be maintained by a generous welfare state anymore.
I thought the same. That’s the whole point of this post. Maybe, just maybe, we’ve been mislead and there is far more to this.
“...and I encourage the media to dig much deeper...”
Good luck with that!
Right, it makes no sense that a straw that breaks the camels back for tea partiers is cuts to government pensions.
Now,IF the people were marching on the government ,demanding mass resignations and new elections,you might have something.
The relatives/friends I have in MA are all leftwing nutcases. Not saying this is the case with your friend, but the odds are high.
The government and banksters screw up the economy and who has to suffer cutbacks? The people.
You know damn well the elite government officials and the bankers won't sacrifice a damn thing. They'll make the common man, who didn't cause a bit of the problem.
Coming soon to a United States near you.
You’ll notice I didn’t say that this was a protest for “liberty”. What I did say (well, what I’m reporting that I was told) is that they are totally fed up with a heavily Socialist government that has managed to screw up virtually everything they’ve touched. The announced, upcoming cuts are just another symptom (in their eyes) of the government’s incompetence and failure.
Lots of people involved — I don’t know that you can assume uniformity of motive across the whole crowd. Even individuals frequently act from mixed motives.
Perhaps we can find more uploaded by Greeks on Facebook, YouTube and such.
Those outlets blew the legacy press away on Iran’s election and Honduras.
We’re always being mislead. We have to disconnect from traditional news services and be skeptical of everyhting.
The Greek are members of the Teaparty!
True, but what the Greeks want is a more competant, but still generous welfare state. Greece is moreso than any other country illustrative of the Pareto Principle: 20% work their assess off to support the 80% that don’t.
In our discussion, I asked about this...if there is anything resembling a truly organized opposition party; a united voice of the opposition, if you will. Answer...apparently not. You’re seeing a disjointed lashing out of angry citizens. True, there will be some (and NO doubt the media will zero in on them.....sound familiar???) that are whining about having to retire at 55 vs. 53. Does that represent the majority, or the anger in that country? Again, apparently not.
Here’s the Greek reality...you run some gas station in Crete and have cheated a little on your taxes from day one (forty years ago). You also cheated on cigarette taxes...paying only half of what was expected. You cheated on work done on vehicles and just reported half the income.
You did all of that because you had to bribe the telephone guy to fix your phone, the cop to provide protection, the utilities guy to fix your power issue, and the county inspector to overlook your leaking gas tanks.
So here you stand...sixty years old. Your pension guaranteed by the government and you really don’t have much left to throw around. Your bank account has been pretty much cut by thirty percent. They are talking about audits over your taxes paid or missed...so you are worried about what income you do have in the bank. And you keep wondering how this whole mess will come to an end.
I’ve spent two vacations in Greece. It’s a great place and it’s safe. But you can’t find a single guy who works forty hours a week. You can’t find any business that does legit taxes. You can’t find any business man who reports his true income. The whole country is like Mexico, but without the drug cartel.
This is crappola.
From what I read 50 percent of Greece’s GDP goes to pay govt. employees and pensions.
Ain’t socialism great?