Monday, July 30, 2007

Public activism does not equal whining - A protesters response

Driving up to Volos on the weekend i passed a few of the burnt areas, coincidently to be found near the national highway, coincidently on the other side of other cafe's, just the perfect place if you want to start a Highway cafe.

Today i want to respond to a comment made/repeated by Greece's most well know blogger vrypan (Panagiotis Vryonis). His post written in Greek (click here) says "I would like to see at least half of the protesters who gathered days ago outside by the Parliament, to help the northern Greeks in their work efforts. And prove that we are not only for complaining and demonstrations!"

As one of the people who turned up to the demonstration i take offence at his depiction of the people who gathered as a bunch of whining demonstrators. Many politicians and their news lackeys in Greece have chosen to ignore the rally and denegrate it and the people who turned out. I dont know precisely what vrypan has against these people but i do know that it confused the Party Hacks, people who care more for their parties than than the country, because, as i commented before, I believe it was the largest non-politically organised rally since the fall of the dictatorship.

At least 90% of rallies in Greece are organised by the parties who bus people in, door knock and make sure that the bodies turn up. If you ask anyone at these rallies why they are there, most will spout slogans and others who are truthfull will say 'The party needs my support'.
PASOK, to its credit hasn't organised many rallies and instead has let New-Democracy poke their eyes out. When they were in opposition they organised rallies at the drop of a hat and now they have lost control of their faithfull who are still protesting in order to get the government jobs and subsidies which were promised them 'I protested for you, now its time to pay us back'

What exactly does vrypan want?
I guess i could become a fire-fighter- if the government was hiring that is. Instead the Government chose to re-instate Horo Filakes (something like country policy which operated like the Gestapo during the dictatorship, and disbanded by the centre left govt.) with that money.
If i was one of the handful of people hired (currently undermanned by at least 4000 people) i would have been inadequetly trained for 3 months (according to the fire services who have been begging and pleading for better training regimes)
I could have read the training books written in Katherevousa back in 1970 (which the fire services have been pleading to be updated)
I could have been sent with inadequate and outdated equipment to fight the fires and maybe have been killed.
Would that have proved that i am not a whiner?

Again: the rally was a reminder to the Government and every politician to uphold the laws, primeraly Reforestation! Because If one square meter of the burnt areas gets built on, gets sold from the church to private builders, gets turned into a casino, and most horribly gets pardoned by the government and brought into the city planning structure, if any of that happens, no matter what gets done now, they justify the actions of the arsonists and in effect legalise the murder and destruction that the fires have done. Because the ends will have justified the means, especially if there are no consequences for their actions.
Thats what the rally was about.

Don't forget what the protesters knew, the government belongs to the people and the politicians are our servants and have a duty to listen to us, uphold the laws and do what is right!


Unknown said...

Hello m8. I'm pretty sure that the quotes your mentioning are from krogias a blogger from Xanthi, and not from vrypan. I'm a regular reader (and listener) of vrypan (he runs a podcast as well), and I believe that he is really sensitive on environmental issues (he is mentioning solutions, ideas and other aspects of what we can do now in order to protect and recreate our forests, at the last 3-4 podcasts episodes)... I'm sure he'll reply to you and say the same things more or less.

Take care ;-)

Vassili - Mike said...

I truly hope so, and i hope i just got the wrong end of the stick on that one. But as i tried to get across, the protest was not the usual run of the mill 'whine-fest' that you usually see, it demanded that a certain course of actions take place that would not see a repeat of what we are seeing.

Παναγιώτης Βρυώνης said...

vrypan here.

You could have spent a couple of minutes reading my blog, to spare yourself from writing so many inaccuracies.

Regarding the rally: I was there, I posted a report and a video too! And please read at least some of the articles here...

Vassili - Mike said...

Thats right! I remember now... will have it corrected! However as i said, i dislike being represented as whiners.

Vassili - Mike said...

Previously i said Vrypan was not at the rally but indeed he was, I am not sure of the ettiquete involved, i have removed the offending comment but is that enough?
My apoligies for this mistake.

Παναγιώτης Βρυώνης said...

OK :-) It's no big deal. Thanks for taking my comment into consideration.

Unknown said...

You people don't have the EU commision on your neck yet?
Today they announced the bring Poland the the European Court for making a highway through a protected wildlife area..((
Anyway, its time to get some rain!

Vassili - Mike said...

That my friend would be a good thing, if there is one thing that Greeks react to most is outside perception. Thats why the Olympics were a success, the whole world was watching so a super effort was made to do the right thing.