Posts Tagged ‘Greece’

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Today, as they have every year since 1889, workers around the world are celebrating International Workers’ Day.

They marched, for example, in Kuala Lampur and Dhaka (on the left and right above, respectively). And they attempted to march on Istanbul’s Taksim Square (but the government sent police and fired water cannons to stop them).

But workers around the world have also developed a new strategy: to take over the enterprises where they work.

In Turkey [ht: ja], for example, a subset of the 94 workers who were fired in January 2013 from the Kazova Textile factory in Istanbul eventually formed a worker-owned cooperative, Free Kazova. It is now in its third month of operation.

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And, as the Guardian reminds us, many groups of workers in other countries—in Greece, France, Spain, and Argentina—are doing the exact same thing, taking matters into their own hands and showing they can organize and operate enterprises democratically, without the previous bosses and boards of directors.

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Posted: 13 April 2015 in Uncategorized
Tags: , , , ,

Greece

According to the data in the chart by Max Roser, Brian Nolan, and Stefan Thewissen, every decile of the Greek population lost ground after the global financial crash and austerity measures were imposed in that country.

As Matt O’Brien explains,

The simple story, as you can see, is that there was a big jump for everybody after the junta was pushed out in 1974, a big stagnation from the mid-80s to the mid-90s, an even bigger jump, especially for the rich, after that, and then a big crash that’s erased 30 years of gains—or more. Greece’s rich have done a little better than the rest, with their real disposable incomes “only” falling to 1985 levels. But its poor have fallen even further, all the way back to where they were in 1980.

That’s why it’s no exaggeration to say that Greece really does have a humanitarian crisis on its hands. The left-wing Syriza government has made this a priority—they want food stamps for the hungry, healthcare for the sick, and electricity for people who can’t afford to keep on the lights—but even with a limited victory in its first round of negotiations with Europe, it’s not clear where the money’s going to come from. Or if it will even have what it needs to pay back its creditors.

But, unless a solution is found—and soon—both Greece and, with it, the project that is Europe will collapse.