FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

Victory for Democracy in Greece!

by DANIEL KOVALIK

The title of this piece should have been the title of the news stories today about the surprise announcement by the Greek Prime Minister that, instead of forcing but another round of draconian austerity measures upon the Greek people, the Greek government will instead be holding a referendum on this subject.

Almost invariably, news outlets greeted such great news with somber headlines such as the one from The New York Times, reading, “Markets Tumble as Greece Plans Referendum.”    Thus, while democracy is breaking out in Greece – oh yes, I forgot, in the country where democracy was invented – due to massive street protests organized by labor and left-wing groups such as the Communist Party of Greece (KKE), the ruling class and its media mouthpieces focus only on what this is going to do the stock market.   And apparently, the rise of democracy, despite the claimed link between it and capitalism, does not translate into a rise in the Dow Jones.

In all fairness to the capitalists, this is very bad news for them, for the belt-tightening by workers that they are calling for around the world is in great jeopardy if it is subject to a popular vote.   And so, in the U.S., such measures are not even being considered by the full Congress, much less by popular referendum, but instead are being debated by a dozen hand-picked members of the Congressional Debt sub-committee.

In short, the game has been rigged so that the popular will cannot have any role in the upcoming decision to slash social benefits.   And so, as AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka informed union members by video yesterday, the Democrats on this sub-committee, ridiculously dubbed the “Super Committee,” have proposed huge cuts to sacred social benefits such as social security and Medicare, while the Republicans have seen them and raised them even greater cuts.

In short, while polls show massive opposition to such cuts, both parties are hell-bent on making them anyway.   So much for democratic values.

It stands to reason, then, that the ruling class is panicked about what is happening in Greece, lest it happen in other countries, such as the U.S. where the Occupy Movement has begun to raise questions about who is really in charge of this country and who should be.  However, why is their panic the main story of the day?  Why isn’t the people’s victory in Greece the real story?

Well, the answer is obvious, though many are loath to believe it – the news media does not work for us, the people, but instead works for the very rich.   While we have been told this many times by such intellectuals as Noam Chomsky and Michael Parenti, and by many others here on CounterPunch, this conclusion is inescapable in light of the current news headlines on Greece.

This is why we must always read between the lines of the main stream press and be skeptical of it, and that is why we need news sources like CounterPunch now more than ever.

Daniel Kovalik is Senior Associate General Counsel of the USW

 

More articles by:

Daniel Kovalik teaches International Human Rights at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law.

Weekend Edition
February 23, 2018
Friday - Sunday
Richard D. Wolff
Capitalism as Obstacle to Equality and Democracy: the US Story
Paul Street
Where’s the Beef Stroganoff? Eight Sacrilegious Reflections on Russiagate
Jeffrey St. Clair
They Came, They Saw, They Tweeted
Andrew Levine
Their Meddlers and Ours
Charles Pierson
Nuclear Nonproliferation, American Style
Joseph Essertier
Why Japan’s Ultranationalists Hate the Olympic Truce
W. T. Whitney
US and Allies Look to Military Intervention in Venezuela
John Laforge
Maybe All Threats of Mass Destruction are “Mentally Deranged”
Matthew Stevenson
Why Vietnam Still Matters: an American Reckoning
David Rosen
For Some Reason, Being White Still Matters
Robert Fantina
Nikki Haley: the U.S. Embarrassment at the United Nations
Joyce Nelson
Why Mueller’s Indictments Are Hugely Important
Joshua Frank
Pearl Jam, Will You Help Stop Sen. Tester From Destroying Montana’s Public Lands?
Dana E. Abizaid
The Attack on Historical Perspective
Conn Hallinan
Immigration and the Italian Elections
George Ochenski
The Great Danger of Anthropocentricity
Pete Dolack
China Can’t Save Capitalism from Environmental Destruction
Joseph Natoli
Broken Lives
Manuel García, Jr.
Why Did Russia Vote For Trump?
Geoff Dutton
One Regime to Rule Them All
Torkil Lauesen – Gabriel Kuhn
Radical Theory and Academia: a Thorny Relationship
Wilfred Burchett
Vietnam Will Win: The Work of Persuasion
Thomas Klikauer
Umberto Eco and Germany’s New Fascism
George Burchett
La Folie Des Grandeurs
Howard Lisnoff
Minister of War
Eileen Appelbaum
Why Trump’s Plan Won’t Solve the Problems of America’s Crumbling Infrastructure
Ramzy Baroud
More Than a Fight over Couscous: Why the Palestinian Narrative Must Be Embraced
Jill Richardson
Mass Shootings Shouldn’t Be the Only Time We Talk About Mental Illness
Jessicah Pierre
Racism is Killing African American Mothers
Steve Horn
Wyoming Now Third State to Propose ALEC Bill Cracking Down on Pipeline Protests
David Griscom
When ‘Fake News’ is Good For Business
Barton Kunstler
Brainwashed Nation
Griffin Bird
I’m an Eagle Scout and I Don’t Want Pipelines in My Wilderness
Edward Curtin
The Coming Wars to End All Wars
Missy Comley Beattie
Message To New Activists
Jonah Raskin
Literary Hubbub in Sonoma: Novel about Mrs. Jack London Roils the Faithful
Binoy Kampmark
Frontiersman of the Internet: John Perry Barlow
Chelli Stanley
The Mirrors of Palestine
James McEnteer
How Brexit Won World War Two
Ralph Nader
Absorbing the Irresistible Consumer Reports Magazine
Cesar Chelala
A Word I Shouldn’t Use
Louis Proyect
Marx at the Movies
Osha Neumann
A White Guy Watches “The Black Panther”
Stephen Cooper
Rebel Talk with Nattali Rize: the Interview
David Yearsley
Market Music
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail