Picture of a judge's wigThe Judge RANTS!Picture of a judge's wig

Date: 29/12/14

It's All Greek To Them

I supply it simply as a data point, useful for future comparison, but it must be noted that the Guardian seems to be as hopelessly adrift from its stated ethical and political moorings when it comes to world politics as it has long been with regard to more domestic concerns.

The latest proof is this story filed today on its werewolf of a website ('werewolf' in the sense that currently it completely changes its appearance depending on what you click on) regarding events in Greece.

Under the byline of one Helena Smith - described as the paper's correspondent in Greece, Turkey and Cyprus - the headline breathlessly assures us that the Hellenes have been:

"...plunged into crisis"

And if that wasn't plain enough, the first line of the story re-iterates the doom:

"Greece was plunged into a renewed political crisis on Monday..."

So what was the cause of The Coming Of The Darkness over Athens?

"...parliament failed to elect a head of state..."

All I can say is that they should be glad that they have the opportunity to not elect one. It's a privilege I wouldn't mind my own country having.

But what is the disastrous outcome of such a dereliction of duty by the assembled members of Vouli ton Ellinon? Ms. Smith informs us that the vote:

"[sets] the stage for snap polls..."

Right. So a government fails to get its way in what amounts in effect to a vote of no-confidence, and so the government is obliged to call a fresh election. That you call a 'crisis', Ms. Smith? The Greek constitution operating as it was intended to? A genuine crisis would have been if the right-wing régime which has been asset-stripping the country for the last two and a half years on the orders of the IMF (and similar terrorist organisations) had refused to accept the outcome of the vote, sent the military and the police forces (increasingly allied to the far right) onto the streets to crack heads, and declared a state of emergency, or even martial law. Not calling a general election. I mean, I know hacks get easily excited by something on their beat changing in any noticeable way, but I'm tempted to echo Michael Winner here.

So what, then, is the current Gordian definition of the word 'crisis'? The very next phrase from the last one quoted above may give what we hardened political observers call 'a ginormous fucking clue':

"...tipped to bring radical leftists to power".

Ah! A little light comes on. The Grundiad clearly believes that the possible election of a party which is not fully committed to the religious dogma of our age (namely that nothing, but nothing may be done - or even considered - which might fling a well-deserved dollop of golden-calfshit into the faces of those who trashed the economies of the developed world) cannot be countenanced as anything other than a sign that the sky is falling.

Take a look at that last quote again, though. Here it is with the key expression in bold:

"...tipped to bring radical leftists to power".

'Radical leftists' (particularly that second word) is a phrase I would have fully expected to see in coverage of the story from the Toryglyph; a term which would have oozed quite consequentially and naturally from the keyboard of a Dominic Lawson or a Charles Moore, but which looks reet peculiar under a byline in a supposedly 'progressive' newspaper. What is particularly 'radical' about a political party which wishes to take control of its country - with a democratic mandate from its people - back from the hauts financiers and their proxies who have looted their land for the larger part of a decade? Wouldn't the perfectly adequate and far less judgmental term 'left-of-centre' - or even 'left-wing' - do?

But that is precisely where the Grandad's sense of panic lies, of course. A little further down the item, we have:

"...the Athens stock exchange nosedived. By the ballot's close it had shed more than 10%..."

Not a word anywhere to set this into the context of the reality of externally-imposed 'austerity' as experienced by that large majority of Greek citizens who couldn't even afford to hold shares, let alone ones which have just cacked a tenth of their price thanks to the standard-issue panic created by those whom - so we have been told ad nauseum ad bucket - are the proper and sober arbiters of our well-ordered world.

We should not, perhaps, be surprised at the sight of a newspaper which still expects us to believe that it is 'left-leaning' despite an increasing body of evidence to the contrary using such apocalyptic terms to describe a party which is no further to the left in its intentions than the Attlee government was well within our own living memory. For the Gooniad - which proclaims that it is not run by any of those nasty, disreputable international media conglomerates and is therefore fiercely independent, oh dear me, yes - is owned and controlled by a body called The Scott Trust (which re-designated itself The Scott Trust Ltd. some six years ago, for reasons which I will leave as an exercise for the class to figure out). The Ltd. (as we should probably call it) contains within its upper echelons at least as many ex-financiers, CEOs and corporate shills as you would find in any of the supposedly non-'independent' media whores at whom the likes of the war-criminal-coddling departing editor Rusbridger look down their noses.

And so the studied misinformation is spread still further, by nothing more overt than using certain words in certain ways in certain contexts; and it is in these ways that the vast majority of the population - even those who proclaim themselves as 'progressive' (Hello, Polly!) or even 'radical' (Hi, Owen!) - will go on believing that there really is No Alternative to the current general economic dispensation (apart from a little tinkering around the edges), that the collapse of the planet's financial Hogwarts' was all due to governments spending money on wasteful and unproductive things such as comprehensive healthcare and making sure as few people as possible freeze to death in winter, and that that's why we can't have nice things.