News Release

Protests Build to Massive General Strike in Greece


COSTAS PANAYOTAKIS, cpanayotakis at
Panayotakis is associate professor of sociology at the New York City College of Technology at CUNY and author of the forthcoming book “Remaking Scarcity: From Capitalist Inefficiency to Economic Democracy.” He said today: “What happened in Greece today was the beginning of a two-day general strike in response to the latest austerity package presented by the government in the last year and a half. These successive packages have drastically reduced the salaries, pensions and labor rights of ordinary Greeks, while leading to a deepening of the crisis and skyrocketing levels of unemployment (16.5 percent for the general population and 42 percent for young people). These packages have been dictated by the European Union, the European Central Bank and the International Monetary Fund as a condition for releasing loans that will allow Greece to keep servicing its debt to foreign creditors. Today’s demonstration was the largest that Greece had seen in 35 years, with hundreds of thousands of people taking to the streets. Resistance to these austerity policies is increasing, as it becomes increasingly obvious to ordinary Greeks that the strings attached to the loans are designed to protect the interests of the European financial sector and Greek employers even at the cost of throwing the majority of Greek society into a state of growing destitution and misery.”

See Panayotakis’s articles: “Youth in Revolt”

“Greeks on the Move: Capitalism’s Wreckage and the Demand for Real Democracy”