Thessaloniki 2003: text from occupation
(, 20.06.2003 00:06

A text from the occupation of Efangelismos in Thessaloniki
translated from the Greek text
posted Athens indy newswire: Kritiban 4:07pm, Thursday 19 June 2003

When the leaders speak
They do not speak truth
Only slaves listen to them,
And the nincompoops.

If you still remember some of the imaginative stories with gods, half-gods, and so on, - that are taught to us in school as 'Greek Mythology' - then better that you should forget them. Don't be.... banal: for years now Globalization has replaced all of that (have pity on globalization...). Mythology, which nonetheless does not refer to some distant past but rather to our daily existence in all of its manifestations, has as its own godly protagonists: Development, Security, Modernization, the Olympics, Consumption, Productivity, ad infinitum. Their place of abode is no longer Mount Olympus, but rather any bank on earth, or parliament, or international stock exchange and such organizations, or police stations and soundbites from major and minor bosses.

The masters of these vulgarities are meeting these days in Thessaloniki to secure all such myths of Development, Security, etc. so that they may better dwell within the daily lives of all of us. Either by means of the carrot (topped with a little breadcrumb for a new taste, or covered in gold leaf for ethnic pride) or with a horsewhip (anti-terrorist laws, Europol, new models of teargas and, when all else fails, war!)

Naturally every myth (and here, unfortunately, we are not discussing the myths of beer) contains some seed of truth. Nonetheless these truths - in such situations - are not those which we are being told by these same people and their news agencies, but rather they are those truths that we live everyday in our skins: our job (or unemployment, the other side of the same coin) - evermore humdrum and stressful under the relentless dictates of the boss and of competition, and with an ever-decreasing guarantee of wage. Nobody (not even the Left) speaks of the barbarity of everyday waged slavery and the alienation of working for others in ways, in a time and in a place without any collective decision-making with ones fellowman, regardless of our needs, which rather have been imposed upon us by the laws of the powerful and their clubs. Despite the fact that even as early as 1950 it was stated that by means of the technology that we possess 10% of the work that we do today would suffice to cover the basic needs of the entire world - we work evermore the more to have evermore the less in our lives and, in parallel, evermore useless objects: video remotes, the second or third car, electric can-openers... why? Because the system has to sell so that its administrators profit. Work bondage does not have a merely rightwing tone in capitalism.

And although soon our accumulating bills could construct a mantelpiece, and the money installments will line up in our sleep and awakening (as the bank managers smile to show off their teeth), the misery and the vacuity of consumption, of 'shopping therapy' etc., serve to render us neurotic humans, lonely in the deprivation of eros, of communication, and of time for ourselves and our fellow human beings. But - let's see what we'll have after the new work relations and insurance schemes, we shall work all the more for less - whoever's not killed in some labor 'accident' (in Greece there have been 188 more fatal injuries than a decade ago) or remains unemployed at 55 rather than deprive the boss of better profit elsewhere. In the meanwhile, otherwise, let them eat the sweetcakes of national revival, in the 200 meter sprint and the new 'great idea' of Olympic specifications and... superiority of the race. In the mythological Kingdom of the Goddess Development, Productivity, etc. one would be foolish to think that the most valuable commodity is cash. Rather it is elastic: elastic work relations, elastic retirement limits, elastic consciences, elastic dignity, wherever we can find it.

Insurance, the goddess of daily fear, of war (cf. 'anti-terrorist' wars and campaigns), of xenophobia, is the malignant all-evasive presence of thirst for human sacrifices at her altar; refugees equally and more oppressed than are we lie at the bottom of the Aegean, thousands of others in every Iraq of the capitalist world, but also our own rights in witness and our daily lives, and so forth. You know, the 'policeman of the neighborhood' will not divvy out pastries but tightened surveillance: Don't give in to all this but react dynamically. He will know who each of us is, where you live, what you do any given moment, and then he'll appear with his others and knock some sense into you 'terrorist scoundrel'. Or perhaps you think that 45,000 cops, riot vehicles, commanders, euro anti-terrorist squads, and so on and so forth, exist apropos of one Passaris and one November 17th.?

Anyway, we could still discuss the missile bases and radiation beside your house, the Mass Media's rubbish dump, and a whole lot of other garbage, - but you already know it. The important thing is for all of us to understand is that...


Top leaders are meeting in Thessaloniki these days in order to promote, both figuratively and literally, this 'civilization'. They are speaking for their own reasons of calculation, on behalf of their companies and their elite, not on our behalf. For 'the new phase in capital accumulation', it could be said. In other words, on behalf of capitalism and the relationships that capitalism daily imposes, since that itself is the problem and not the innumerable antagonistic Greek and foreign riff-raff who protest as they, once again, drink from Bohemian crystal goblets topped with golden gilded statuettes - as their mediamen informed us during the last summit.

It is against this model of life that many of our fellowmen will these days march, protest and - if you wish to say - clash against their oppressors. For certainly all of us want ourselves to administer our own work, our activities, our communications. The fact that it is possible that we create AUTONOMOUS social frameworks of substance is the only single thing that is not a myth in this story.

Think-organize-collectively demand-resist

Initiative by means of the Efangelisos occupation, Thessaloniki.
June 19, 2003

...Greek original at:

thessaloniki reports |