The Greeks Don’t Fuck Around.

Greece Riots in Pictures

From Yesterday’s Guardian: Greek Riots Enter Third Day

Third Night of Greek Riots

They even torched the Christmas tree in front of the Parliament. And why not? 

I was at the anti-globalization protests in Quebec City in the summer of 2001. Kids spent days throwing rocks and even molotov cocktails at lines of riot police. When you asked them, they couldn’t articulate what they were against – because there wasn’t anything tangible to BE against. Coca-Cola, MacDonalds – these aren’t countries after all, these are just banalities in our lives. But we all knew that power was being taken away, that decisions were being made that would alter the world irrevocably. 

   And altered it was. After 9-11, such protests became almost unheard of in the West. In 2003, I was in New York City when some half-million people marched against the Iraq war. It was fifteen below and the wind off the East River was sharp and very cold, and still people marched. My girlfriend and I stopped at a bar to get warm. CNN and NY1 were playing in the corner. CNN showed clips at the top of the hour, NY1 showed nothing. It’s like the protests – the biggest since the Vietnam war – didn’t even happen. 

What’s motivating these kids is apparently a mix of gross inequality, a bailout for the banks, and admiration for an earlier generation of anarchists who fought the military junta in the 70’s. But I wonder if these kinds of protests are going to become more and more common, throughout the West, especially if times get worse.