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Saturday 23 June 2012

Media stirring up national pride over Germany-Greece soccer match

By @inflammatory_

Football is one of the remaining spheres in which it is acceptable to openly display patriotic sentiment. This seems to apply in every country. The relationship between football and nationhood was shaped by particular historical and cultural factors. There might be different perceptions among people of how direct this association is, but those with far-right political affiliations apparently find it it easier to project symbolic meanings of Greek pride on a team of players that represents the nation in a game. Georgios Papadopoulos, one of the military dictatorship's architects back in the 70's, encouraged people to watch football whilst he imposed severe constraints in civil liberties. That says a lot about how to channel outrage on a safe outlet.

In view of the historical coincidence between eurozone crisis and the advent of Euro 2012 football championship, media evoked national pride for Friday's quarter-final, fueling Greeks' sentiment as they were admittedly looking forward to watching the game on telly. Even journalist Vivi Draka dared to appear on State TV with a face paint of  the Greek flag. A soccer game suddenly came to have political connotations, with the punishing anti-austerity message having its moment again, spreading from election results to the football grass field. Despite Greek team's defeat, national pride remained intact as efforts were largely appreciated by the public. Maybe the real winners were those lucky few immigrants that were not bashed by violent xenophobic nationalists as a demonstration of strength and dominance.

Thursday 21 June 2012

Declaration of the Government of National Responsibility

Original post by @doleross, translated by @IrateGreek

The following text is the "Declaration of the Government of National Responsibility" - in other words the programmatic framework to which the three parties participating in the government coalition (New Democracy, PASOK & Democratic Left) agreed.
The government of national responsibility which is created with the support of the three parties (New Democracy, PASOK and Democratic Left) will have full powers and the time frame stipulated by the Constitution. Its goals are to face the crisis, to pave the way for development and to revise conditions set in the loan agreement (memorandum) without endangering the European path of the country and its remaining in the eurozone. And, of course, without casting doubts on the self-evident goals of zeroing the fiscal deficit, putting the debt under control and implementing the structural reforms the country needs. 
A further goal is to create the conditions for the country to rid itself of the crisis for good, as well as the dependence on loan agreements in the future. The new government of national responsibility will smaller, with a perspective of shinking even further, and it is meant to be functional and executive. 
It will not be constituted of fiefdoms influenced by parties, it will function with unity, it will be based on transparency, on the programmatic agreements of the parties that support it and on the staffing of the administrative mechanisms on the basis of merit.  
Furthermore, it will be founded on flexibility, in order to avoid that disagreements on specific topics impede its work or the consensus that is needed for its work to continue. 
Finally, the new government and the chair of the Parliament will take the initiative to change the Parliament's regulations in order for legislative practices and parliamentary control to adapt to the new conditions of coalition governments. This will also upgrade the role of the House. 

Tuesday 19 June 2012

Urgent meeting in PASOK headquarters

Edit: Translation: inflammatory_

In light of recent developments, Venizelos invited his close aides for a meeting to make final decisions of critical importance regarding the broader efforts to form a new government. A. Loverdos, M. Chrisochoidis, A. Diamantopoulou, K. Scandalidis, P. Efthimiou, M. Androulakis and F. Gennimata will join. 
The topics under discussion include everything raised by Samaras and Kouvelis (Democratic Left) to the Head of PASOK, who attempts to bring on board Kouvelis' argument against the aspect where Loverdos and Chrisochoidis would be appointed of ministerial posts they used to hold during previous government.
Everything shows though that PASOK members will join a coalition. 

Sunday 17 June 2012

LIVE BLOG on Greek elections, June 17

By @inflammatory_

01:50 Election Results in a nutshell 
Here's a recap of the day's main highlights
  • Check here the latest official updates on election results from Ministry of Interior's webpage.
  • As there is no outright winner securing 151 seats, leader of pro-bailout "New Democracy" A. Samaras, will receive a formal mandate from President Karolos Papoulias on Monday morning to form a coalition government. Some members estimate that might get back individual support from ex-comrades who switched to Independent Greeks thus putting its cohesiveness at risk.
  • Although physical assaults on left-wing politicians and immigrants made headlines, it seems that neonazi Golden Dawn's voters are engaged with the party's rhetoric and practices.
  • Communist Party KKE has hit a record low.
  • A few who voted for right-wing anti-bailout Independent Greeks during last elections switched to Syriza and New Democracy, dropping down the party's rating.
  • Although left-wing Syriza came second, the party managed to raise the percentage of the vote from 4,6% in 2009 to 27,1% in 2012. Syriza has rejected any coalition with a pro-bailout party.
  • PASOK is keen to join forces with New Democracy, Syriza and Democratic Left with Venizelos apparently denying that Syriza's collaboration is a strong prerequisite. 

Tuesday 12 June 2012

Was the bailout of Greece legal?

Edited by Keith Ewing, Professor of Public Law at King’s College London, for USI
As the European political crisis becomes ever more intense and the economic crisis ever more acute, there is a third crisis yet to unfold.  This is the crisis of legality now engulfing the EU, an entity that seems to be free to do what it likes and to ignore the legal foundations on which it is supposed to be built.
The EU, its institutions and its representatives are required to act with legal authority and within the scope of legal powers.   To this end, the post–Lisbon treaty is full of clearly expressed principles and obligations, the EU apparently founded on the values of ‘human dignity, freedom, democracy, equality, the rule of law and respect for human rights’.

Thursday 7 June 2012

David Graeber on radiobubblenews

On Saturday 9 June 2012, we hosted American anthropologist David Graeber on the @radiobubblenews show. The American author, researcher, and one of the pioneers of the Occupy Wall Street movement, shared his thoughts on global capitalism as well as on the potential of citizen movements to radically change the current status quo.

What follows is a “listener’s guide”, which will enable you to listen to whatever specific part of the interview you would like to hear. We thank all members and non-members of radiobubble’s community for their participation – the interview/discussion was a collective endeavour.

In the booth, together with David Graeber, were @risinggalaxy @IrateGreek @csyllas. Enjoy the broadcast, which is in both Greek and English. The translation of the listener's guide was provided by @iptamenos33

Saturday 2 June 2012

The pre-electoral commitments that shape the “electoral polarization” in this June’s elections.

By @galaxyarchis, translated by the #rbnews international team.

The shaping of the pre-electoral landscape concludes with the final pitch of the leaders of the two parties which theoretically and practically, have a claim to power on June 18. Under the circumstances, PASOK has to a large extent withdrawn from the battle for leadership and is reserving for itself –as expressed by the statements of its leader Evangelos Venizelos– a regulatory role. The same goes for the Democratic Left which has also stated its intention to participate in a coalition government.

The rupture between Samaras (leader of conservative New Democracy) and Tsipras (the leader of left wing SYRIZA) reached a climax with the presentation of their pre-electoral commitments on Thursday and Friday respectively, thus shaping a new polarization around the dilemmas which they put forward clearly: “Memorandum or Drachma” and “Memorandum or Syriza.”

What follows is a detailed juxtaposition, on a point by point basis, of these commitments.

A French translation is available on Okeanews