And the butchery begins!

More and more, as the crisis deepens, I get the feeling that this country is showing two extreme faces. On one hand I see solidarity, people reconsidering their exaggerated lifestyles, reason substituting madness. On the other hand I see an extreme version of individualism, desparate people having lost hope for change, trying to save their own asses.

People simply want to have a job, everything else can be fixed. They’ll do anything for a job. The employers know this and they’ll offer almost nothing in exchange for labour. Karl Marx at his best.

I was having a drink a couple of nights ago with a friend and she was telling me about this woman who was desperate for work. She was living in Agrinio, a city in Western Greece where unemployment is high and young people are escaping elsewhere in Greece or abroad. The woman ended up accepting to work for a butcher’s shop but only during the holidays. The salary was 20 euros for 17 hrs of work. An insider told my friend that the butcher’s turnover was 25.000 euros.


Some months ago there was an uproar when a hotelier in the island of Aegina posted an ad asking for an employee to work at his hotel voluntarily (!!!). In exchange he was offering accomodation and food. That’s how far (and low) we have gone as a country.

People are so desperate that there are some who indeed accept (or could even beg for) such working conditions. “It’s better than nothing” they’ll say and I can’t really blame them, it’s not their fault. But I can’t either turn a blind eye to a country becoming more and more like a cannibalist society somewhere deep in the virgin rainforests of Papua New Guinea. It now seems that the need of work is driven more and more by our instict of self-preservation.

I’m going to get that job. It’s either me or you. Like the guy in The Axe of Costa Gavras. I’m going to eat you, as wild animals do in the jungle.

Writing these things, a weird quote comes to my mind. I was watching the trailer of the upcoming 2nd season of the “House of Cards”. At the end of it, a cynical Frank Underwood (Kevin Spacey) says:

For those of us climbing to the top of the food chain, there can be no mercy… and the butchery begins.


Oh yes… and Happy New Year!

2 responses to “And the butchery begins!

  1. Ahhh Kosta file,

    I am a Greek living in Argentina since 1945. I go to Greece every year in the summer.. I am a fortunate one who has not fallen into the trap.. Since 2004 I have been warning my friends in Athens that somebody sometime will pay for the Euro Party. They smiled at my pessimism…said that the money they got was a gift for joining the EU and did not have to be paid back ! I am not happy that I foresaw reality.

    But that is not the essence of this comment… The Cannibalism is.. This is not new.. I have Greek Albanian friends.. Wonderful people who took care of the last days of my father in Athens.. They have been victims of the Cannibalism of the local Greeks who would squeeze them in every job the man took (electrician) and too many times with very few exceptions would delay payments… and part of the final payment would be unilaterally denied. The Local Greek swindling the Albanian Greek (with recognized birth and papers certifying his Greek origin) just because he would be an inferior being.. !!! But this did not happen only with Albanians, although that condition made it “a must”, but also with other Greeks. All too common.

    Of course they are not like that with their “equals” socially and with friends as they loved to be “cuvardades”..

    When you read the history of the Politicians back to the ages of the revolution against the Turks ( Kolokotronis a victim of them for example) you will see betrayal and personal greed galore.

    Unfortunately my experience as a Greek from abroad has been to realize that my fellow countrymen have a very low feeling of solidarity, greed and selfishness being too common… It can also be seen in the local community of Argentina…gossip and envy….

    Yes, we were the birthplace of philosophy and the western civilization, but somehow we have managed to have very little to show for it in the latest centuries, and even less now as altruism and philosophy have been replaced by consumerism. That was what led them into the EU trap with its excessive availability of BORROWED (versus earned) MONEY.

    Lets not forget that back in the mid 1800 Amschel Rothschild said: “give me the power to issue and manage the currency of a country and I do not care who makes the laws”. Well nobody is taking this as seriously as it should be taken and Greece, accepting that, surrendered its Sovereignty to the Brussels EU whose top executives are not even elected, and enslaved itself with a debt which can never be paid in the conditions it is now. So the Troika and EU Bank now call the shots..

    The unfortunate condition of the Greek people described above makes it all the more difficult for them to survive decently this crisis. But there is no blinder person than the one which even ignores what he must look out for.

    I hate to sound so critical, but that is how I see it.. I pray to God, also Zeus and all the others, so that by some miracle the Greeks may see the light and imbue themselves with solidarity and accept sacrifice as this will be the only way out. That and to tell the Banksters to go get their money from where they created it (their keyboards) not from the blood of the Greeks. (notice the “Haircuts” were to the private holders of the debt not to the Bankster institutions who get interest and fees for refinancing and also impose “laws and conditions”)

    Keep up your work.



  2. The essence of my previous comment can be taken from a very famous book essential to the Argentinian culture called “Martin Fierro”. One of the most famous verses, sung by the famous Gaucho, translated to English says…”may the brothers be united, be that the first of the laws, because otherwise, they will be eaten by the outsiders”. This wisdom should be added to all the other wisdom from Greek history.



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