In the opening three paragraphs of Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures In Wonderland, Alice watches a creature she thought she knew well, but dressed in a manner she’d never imagined, “pop down a large rabbit-hole under the hedge.” The instructive line for purposes of this post comes next in the tale: “In another moment down went Alice after it, never once considering how in the world she was to get out again.”
It sounds like the strategy of Greece’s ruling party. Although with this week’s twitter round by Greece’s Prime Minister dissing Turkey’s leadership, a more relevant excerpt may be, “But I don't want to go among mad people,” said Alice. “Oh, you can't help that,” said the cat. “We're all mad here.”
In his pre-Prime Minister days he’d also been an architect of the sorts of street demonstrations and strikes that now mobilize against his government. Today his party holds a slim three-seat Parliamentary majority and faces a vote today on violently opposed pension reforms that may erode that majority further.
|Prime Minister Tsipras, right, with true far right coalition partner on left--to add to confusion.|
How can that be you ask? Well, permit me to refer you to a story in Moscow’s Sputnik, an admittedly suspect source of information these days. BUT it is consistent with a similar story I’d heard when Greece’s last general strike took place three weeks ago. Here is the headline:
GREECE SYRIZA PARTY CALLS FOR GENERAL STRIKE PROTESTING AUSTERITY MEASURES.
Yep, you read that correctly. SYRIZA was reported as calling for Thursday’s general strike to protest against the very pension reforms it’s been pushing heaven and earth to get its opposition members in Parliament to join them in adopting!
"The people's struggle, social movement and workers' demands are the decisive factor for real democracy, for overturning the bitter legacy left by years of neoliberal policies. Through small and large labor struggles on a daily basis, the questions of an alternative way for Greece and Europe can be kept open. Hope can be retained. Extortion by employers and neoliberal political and economic centers in Greece and abroad can be repelled. It is very important today that workers demand recapitalization of pension funds… It is necessary to maintain social security…by means of raising employer contributions."
What I wonder is how does Greece expect to get out of this bottomless rabbit hole into which its government has plunged it? There appears no plan, no rhyme, no reason at play, and soon I fear the people will find it’s not a dream or nightmare they’re living, but badly mismanaged and misrepresented reality. What follows next? As a Queen once said, perhaps “off with their heads,” and “sentence before verdict.”
As for where it’s all headed, here’s another Wonderland quote: “If you don't know where you are going any road can take you there.”
PS. Here’s a photo of two very special ladies who surprised me greatly at an event Thursday night in Chicago…Eide Gage and her and Leighton’s daughter Melina.