Nikos Ladopoulos

Life has a price in Greece today. It is worth just 25 Euros, or about $35. That's the price of admission to a public hospital since the beginning of the year. And it only gets your foot in the door, with other fees that follow.


In the midst of the international outcry against rising neo-Nazism and murderous attacks against foreign nationals and Greeks, the Greek government recently arrested several Parliament members (MPs) and other leaders of the neo-fascist Golden Dawn party.

It took the death of Pavlos Fyssas, an antifascist Greek rapper, to arouse the government from its self-imposed slumber.

It has suddenly realized that Golden Dawn is a "criminal organization... acting since 1987... and responsible for at least five murders," per the report of the Greek Supreme.

The killing of Pavlos Fyssas, an anti-fascist rapper, on Sept. 18 is a warning sign of how far things have gone downhill in Greece. Fyssas was allegedly murdered by a member of the Golden Dawn, the first European neo-Nazi group to make it into a European parliament. The Greek government is exploiting this crime to go after both the Golden Dawn and the popular leftwing opposition party, SYRIZA.

This is the second time in my lifetime I woke up with the absence of public radio and television. Once when the Junta of the colonels fifty-five years ago brought out the tanks and took over the public broadcast stations and now when this tripartite government of "national salvation," the local Troika as the Greeks call it, is pulling the plug.


Finally, the subject of Germany's war debt to Greece has surfaced.

During World War II, Hitler forced credit on the Greek Quisling Government after looting its banks in 1943. This debt, $205 billion in today's money, plus the interest since 1945, comes to a whopping 750 billion dollars, enough money for Greece not only to pay back all its debts but to put some of its unemployed to work again.


With unemployment at almost 30% for the general population, 50% for those under 30, with suicides surpassing depression-era levels, with a rising neo-Nazi movement that preys on the fears of the less-educated, and with a powerless coalition government ceding national sovereignty to repay a debt that was made by the very same government partners (with the exception of the minority coalition partner, DIMAR/"Democratic Left") that are now again in power, Greece appears to be a sinking ship -- even if it's sinking into the beautiful Aegean sea.


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Trump's politics are not the problem.

The fiery Milwaukee Sheriff is on the shortlist to head the Department of Homeland Security.

By Wendell Berry

Manifesto: The Mad Farmer Liberation Front

Love the quick profit, the annual raise,
vacation with pay. Want more 
of everything ready made. Be afraid 
to know your neighbors and to die.
And you will have a window in your head.
Not even your future will be a mystery 
any more. Your mind will be punched in a card 
and shut away in a little drawer.
When they want you to buy something 
they will call you. When they want you
to die for profit they will let you know. 
So, friends, every day do something
that won’t compute. Love the Lord. 
Love the world. Work for nothing. 
Take all that you have and be poor.
Love someone who does not deserve it. 
Denounce the government and embrace 
the flag. Hope to live in that free 
republic for which it stands. 
Give your approval to all you cannot
understand. Praise ignorance, for what man 
has not encountered he has not destroyed.
Ask the questions that have no answers. 
Invest in the millennium. Plant sequoias.
Say that your main crop is the forest
that you did not plant,
that you will not live to harvest.

Say that the leaves are harvested 
when they have rotted into the mold.
Call that profit. Prophesy such returns.
Put your faith in the two inches of humus 
that will build under the trees
every thousand years.
Listen to carrion—put your ear
close, and hear the faint chattering
of the songs that are to come. 
Expect the end of the world. Laugh. 
Laughter is immeasurable. Be joyful
though you have considered all the facts. 
So long as women do not go cheap 
for power, please women more than men.
Ask yourself: Will this satisfy 
a woman satisfied to bear a child?
Will this disturb the sleep 
of a woman near to giving birth? 
Go with your love to the fields.
Lie easy in the shade. Rest your head 
in her lap. Swear allegiance 
to what is nighest your thoughts.
As soon as the generals and the politicos 
can predict the motions of your mind, 
lose it. Leave it as a sign 
to mark the false trail, the way 
you didn’t go. Be like the fox 
who makes more tracks than necessary, 
some in the wrong direction.
Practice resurrection.

Wendell Berry is a poet, farmer, and environmentalist in Kentucky. This poem, first published in 1973, is reprinted by permission of the author and appears in his “New Collected Poems” (Counterpoint).

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