Saturday, June 18, 2011

In Greece, we see democracy in action

Costas Douzinas writes for the Guardian:


...Three weeks ago, things changed. A motley multitude of indignant men and women of all ideologies, ages, occupations, including the many unemployed, began occupying Syntagma – the central square of Athens opposite parliament; the area around White Tower in Thessaloniki; and public spaces in other major cities. The daily occupations and rallies, sometimes involving more than 100,000 people, have been peaceful, with the police observing from a distance. Calling themselves the "outraged", the people have attacked the unjust pauperising of working Greeks, the loss of sovereignty that has turned the country into a neocolonial fiefdom of bankers, and the destruction of democracy. Their common demand is that the corrupt political elites who have ruled the country for some 30 years and brought it to the edge of collapse should go. Political parties and banners are discouraged.

Thousands of people come together daily in Syntagma to discuss the next steps. The parallels with the classical Athenian agora, which met a few hundred metres away, are striking. Aspiring speakers are given a number and called to the platform if that number is drawn, a reminder that many office-holders in classical Athens were selected by lots. The speakers stick to strict two-minute slots to allow as many as possible to contribute. The assembly is efficiently run without the usual heckling of public speaking. The topics range from organisational matters to new types of resistance and international solidarity, to alternatives to the catastrophically unjust measures. No issue is beyond proposal and disputation. In well-organised weekly debates, invited economists, lawyers and political philosophers present alternatives for tackling the crisis.

This is democracy in action. The views of the unemployed and the university professor are given equal time, discussed with equal vigour and put to the vote for adoption. The outraged have reclaimed the square from commercial activities and transformed it into a real space of public interaction. The usual late-evening TV viewing time has instead become a time for being with others and discussing the common good. If democracy is the power of the "demos", in other words the rule of those who have no particular qualification for ruling, whether of wealth, power or knowledge, this is the closest we have come to democratic practice in recent European history. ...





It helps to recognise that Greece is very different from other Western European societies. There are, in fact, more similarities to states run by political oligarchies than anyone in the EU hierarchy would like to admit. Shocking examples of kleptocracy by the political elite certainly form part of the explanation for the ferocity of the reaction we are now seeing on the streets of Athens. And it is this ferocity which has intensified the risk of a default, the repercussions of which would reverberate throughout Europe and threaten the existence of the euro as we know it.

[ ... ]

The political class, meanwhile, benefits from Article 62 of the constitution, which means parliamentarians accused of crimes have to be tried by fellow parliamentarians. Payment of taxes is erratic, with some individuals hit hard with demands, while others escape almost entirely. Domestic Greek interest groups are not without blame. From 2001 to 2009, trade unions seized their opportunity for annual pay rises without links to productivity. With easy access to borrowing hard currency, and a big incentive to buy votes, both the left-wing Pasok and its right-wing counterpart New Democracy duly indulged. As long as they had access to easy loans, they could buy enough social peace to deflect attention from scandals and mismanagement. Now the money has run out. ...


Appropriate as a response to these platitudes:

Greece’s self-inflicted woes threaten the rest of Europe

Full Comment’s Araminta Wordsworth brings you a daily round-up of quality punditry from across the globe. Today: The country that brought you democracy now teeters on the brink of destruction precisely because of that system.

For years Greeks have enjoyed the trappings of a modern state, with pensions, public-sector jobs and paid vacations, without being willing to pay the piper. This week’s riots in Athens only spotlight most people’s failure to grasp this point.

Politicians have been voted in on the basis of their ability to continue rearranging the deckchairs on the Titanic. Tax evasion is the country’s major sport, with tax inspectors taking bribes to go away.
Now, Greece is technically bankrupt, unable to pay its billions of dollars in loans. As is usual in such cases, that transfers the problem to the bankers, in the case the rest of Europe and potentially the world. ...



And, on a lighter note, more recognition for the ubiquitous Riot Dog:

One committed protester was at the front line when Greek police fired teargas at protesters outside parliament on Wednesday.

The dog, thought to be a stray called Loukanikos, or Sausage, has been in the centre of the action for years.

World Revolution Not Seen on TV - Rallies Around the World


Worldwide rallies cry for peace and gather in solidarity. Western media ignores these peaceful gatherings and if they report, they focus on a few who act out (negatively). They don't show you the thousands of videos taken by real people around the world chanting for peace and freedom. Search YouTube today and you will find the streets around the world filled with people, standing up against tyranny, oppression, and NWO control. They are begging Americans to wake up too!!

Now is the time to choose......LOVE or FEAR?? If you choose Love, then stand up without Fear. We can't win war with war. We can only win peace on earth with Love. Don't sit by idle and do nothing as your show of peace. Stand up against bullies of the world with TRUTH, LOVE and PEACEFUL PROTEST.

YouTube rejected this upload 4 times, so I had to keep cutting it in order to upload for your viewing rights. See the entire video here:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jFZkR_9XAH0


Uploaded by sarahlivesey on Mar 26, 2011 

BE THE CHANGE - Join the Choice Point Facebook community
http://www.facebook.com/pages/Choice-Point/191707410864399

There is no time left to be complacent. The world is changing now. Not tomorrow. Be part of the change for good. The love. Not the fear. Let go your attachment to the old world and embrace the new.

Book claims Aussie war crimes

Atrocities were committed by British and commonwealth soldiers, including Australians, during the Korean War, according to a new book.

 Scorched Earth, Black Snow: Britain and Australia in the Korean War, 1950 describes an incident where an Australian soldier told two North Korean prisoners of war to walk away from him and then tried to shoot them with their own submachine gun: known to allied forces as a "burp gun", it jammed.

Lance-Corporal Don Barrett of the Middlesex Regiment describes how a soldier of the Royal Australian Regiment dealt with captured "gooks", as the North Koreans were derogatorily described.

"Out in (the) field was an Aussie and he had two gooks -- he'd taken their burp gun -- and he motioned and they started walking away," Mr Barrett told the book's author, Andrew Salmon.

"It misfired, so he called them back. One came back and fixed it. They walked away, then he mowed them down."

~ more... ~

~ Note: Polyukhovich v Commonwealth ~

"The world's second-largest untapped copper reserve, and the Chinese have bought the mineral rights to the entire area"


Ten years ago, the Taliban blew up Afghanistan's ancient Buddhas of Bamiyan, provoking international outrage. Now, the country's rich heritage is facing a new threat. A Chinese mining venture has set its sights on another ancient Buddhist site, reports the BBC's Quentin Sommerville.

Mes Aynak lies in Logar province, a short helicopter ride from Kabul.

The site was was once an al-Qaeda training camp, but is also home to an astonishing discovery - a Buddhist monastery more than 1,400 years old.

Unlike many archaeological sites, this is more than a few stones on the ground.

There are walls and corridors. Walking past the stupas, or shrines, and the still brightly painted red Buddhas, you get a real sense of a living monastery and the grandeur of the place.

The monks settled here because there was copper in the ground; it was part of a Buddhist kingdom. This was a way-station on the Silk Road, the route that would take Buddhism from India to Tibet, and beyond into China.

"The main thing for us is to document as much as we can before its destruction," said Phillippe Marquis, a French archaeologist who has been working on the site, and is assisting in an emergency evacuation of the site.

"It was the copper in the ground that brought the monks here, made them rich and allowed them to build this monastery."

But if it is copper that led to the creation of this monastery, it is copper that will also lead to its destruction.

With 1.2 Billion People, India Seeks a Good Hangman

By Jim Yardley and Hari Kumar, NYT

India has 1.2 billion people, among them bankers, gurus, rag pickers, billionaires, snake charmers, software engineers, lentil farmers, rickshaw drivers, Maoist rebels, Bollywood movie stars and Vedic scholars, to name a few. Humanity runneth over. Except in one profession: India is searching for a hangman.

Usually, India would not need one, given the rarity of executions. The last was in 2004. But in May, India’s president unexpectedly rejected a last-chance mercy petition from a convicted murderer in the Himalayan state of Assam. Prison officials, compelled to act, issued a call for a hangman.

No one answered.

Not initially.

The nation’s handful of known hangmen had either died, retired or disappeared. The situation was not too surprising, given the ambivalence within the Indian criminal justice system about executions. Capital punishment was codified during British rule, with hanging as the chosen method, but recent decades of litigating and legislating limited the actual practice to “the rarest of rare cases.”
 

Time-travel sex: Bad for sea monkeys

Emma Mustich writes for Salon:

For a new study set to be published in the journal Evolution, scientists from the Center for Functional and Evolutionary Ecology in Montpellier, France, mated female brine shrimp ("sea monkeys") with males from past and future generations.

The report, called "Male-Female Coevolution in the Wild: Evidence from a Time Series in Artemia Franciscana," found that the female brine shrimp "survived better and had longer interbrood intervals when mated with their contemporary males compared to when mated with males from the future or the past." Its formal conclusion: "[T]he process of male-female coevolution, previously revealed by experimental evolution in laboratory artificial conditions, can occur in nature on a short evolutionary time scale."

~ more... ~

9/11 Truth: Hollywood Speaks Out (FULL LENGTH FILM)


Original Film Credited to: WakeUpToTheNWO

Please visit: 
http://www.youtube.com/user/WakeUpToTheNWO

MEP 'bloodied' sneaking into Bilderberg hotel

Italian MEP Mario Borghezio was reportedly given a bloody nose on Thursday as he attempted to sneak into the secretive Bilderberg conference in St. Moritz.

Borghezio, of right-wing Italian party Lega Nord, was reportedly with another Italian as he attempted to infiltrate the luxury Suvretta House hotel where the conference is taking place.
Borghezio was blocked by guards from the security firm Securitas, who then called in the Swiss police. After having their identities checked, the two Italians were told they could not enter the building.


But according to the Italian news agency ANSA, Borghezio's nose was bloodied during the altercation with the security guards. He told the agency he intends to press charges.

Swiss police spokesman Thomas Hobi said, "We don't comment on the work of private security firms," before adding that the police was not at liberty to even confirm the identities of the two men, because of data protection laws.

Nuclear Doom



Here in the above video [2.08 min] we are looking at nuclear hell on earth, a night film of the radioactive steam that continues to rise from Fukushima 24 hours a day. Arnie Gundersen, a former nuclear power industry executive, is one of the experts who has been saying from day one that the nuclear crisis in Japan was much worse than they were telling us. 

He was absolutely correct. Finally, three months later we are getting some numbers on what the real dangers are. And finally we can begin to understand the enormous cover-up of the nuclear doom that is reaching lungs all over the west coast of America, Canada, Alaska, Hawaii and at least half of Japan! For infants it’s a terrible valley of death we have created for them. As we shall see for years all of them have been born with already polluted bloodstreams and now the very young ones are dying in greater numbers on the west coast of the United States since Fukushima blew up.

After the first week, officials had enough information to call for evacuation of a wide area in Japan and also Hawaii, Alaska and the entire west coast of North America. They really should have evacuated all of northern Japan and also the west coast but that was almost as impossible as evacuating the entire planet or the entire northern hemisphere. 

Evacuation of planet earth might be the best way for humanity to avoid the terrible nuclear, heavy metal and chemical toxicity we are now facing all at the same time. Avoiding exposure is always the best plan but there is no way to avoid breathing in air contaminated with tiny hot particles. Inhalation issues are much more frightening than ingestion issues because you can pick and choose what you eat and drink but you can’t buy bottled air.

Nuclear Toxicity Syndrome is about how to survive in nuclear and chemical hell. But one cannot do what is necessary to survive hell if a person doesn’t know they are living in one. It just keeps getting worse by the day and now we have Fort Calhoun nuclear plant outside Omaha, Nebraska on emergency alert as first fire and now flooding threatens to overwhelm yet another nuclear facility. With Mother Nature now angry (in a most bitter sense) we are really in more serious trouble than any of us would be comfortable imagining. We knew nuke power plants were bad news but who would think they would build them on fault lines or in flood zones?


Massive Protest and General Strike in Greece - 15 June, 2011


DemocracyNow.org - Greece was rocked Wednesday by massive street protests and a strike of millions of workers against the government's austerity plans. In response, embattled Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou announced he will reshuffle his cabinet to try to achieve consensus on how to address the country's crippling debt crisis. The new austerity package for Greece includes $9.4 billion in tax hikes, doubling past measures agreed to with bailout lenders that have pushed unemployment to a record 16.2 percent and extended a deep recession into its third year. Democracy Now! interviews Hara Kouki, a doctoral student based in Athens who has been writing about the protests, and by Costas Panayotakis, associate professor of sociology at the New York City College of Technology at CUNY.

For the transcript, podcast, and for more Democracy Now! reports about austerity cuts and protests in Greece and throughout Europe, visit
http://www.democracynow.org/2011/6/16/political_crisis_in_greece_amidst_revolt



Hundreds of protesters clashed with riot police in central Athens on Wednesday as a major anti-austerity rally degenerated into violence outside the Greek parliament. The clashes continued as Greek state media reported that the beleaguered Socialist government has launched power-sharing talks with the main opposition conservatives.

Another view of events at Syntagma Square:

Google
 

image from http://www.spitting-image.net

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