When street protests defeat their purpose

The problem with the unchecked street protests which so often block traffic in Athens - more than 900 protest rallies were held in the capital in the 18-month period ending June 30 - is a leftover of the post-1974 political mind-set. As with political posters and graffiti, public demonstrations...

Invoking telegenic miracles for favor

Every year we see the feast of the Dormition of the Virgin turned into a trade fair. We don't just mean the stalls outside churches, the souvlaki and cotton candy, but also what is being «sold» inside. Politicians have a first-rate opportunity to parade their piety, the archbishop to show the...

Poor excuses in the clash of civilizations

Despite the blunders of the administration of George W. Bush and Washington's attempt to export democracy in the Middle East, the war of civilizations has in fact been turned on its head. The «mad mullahs» want to export the Islamic revolution at any cost. Their god says they must impose their...

Challenges of an unconventional war

If there is anything we can learn from the unorthodox war currently under way in Lebanon, it is that Israel's military machine is too large to tackle Hezbollah. No army and no nation-state can effectively take on fighters dressed in civilian clothes who fire off rockets from among the civilian...

Woes and benefits of having quarries

The truth is that nobody wants quarries in their neighborhood. Every local authority is quite justified in objecting to quarry works in its area. Besides, it is well known that every inch of Greek earth is «beautiful land» of «inestimable environmental value» upon which some third cousin or maybe...

Taxes and handouts

George Bernard Shaw once said that a government that robs Peter to pay Paul can always count on Paul's support. He left it to us to imagine what Peter's reaction might be. The same thing applies to a government which raises taxes while announcing it will be hiring rural policemen. It might be...

Our selective rage at warmongers

If Israel was not a US ally, who would left-wing demonstrators in Greece have as a target for their protests? What statues would they knock down in an expression of their rage? Or if Israel's military operations were interpreted as an attempt to overturn the «New World Order,» would there be any...