Greek myths and the financial markets: Can the UK be next?
At 1.00 pm today (Saturday 25 February) Occupy London invites you to hear and speak with notable guest speakers at the steps of St Paul’s focusing on one of the world economy’s hot topics – Greece. As potential eviction looms for the Occupy the London Stock Exchange camp, based in the churchyard of St Paul’s Cathedral, Occupy London, the movement for economic and social justice continues to provide the space for democratic dialogue and political debate.
- Costas Douzinas – teaches law and is Director of the Birkbeck Institute for the Humanities, University of London. His books include ‘The End of Human Rights’, ‘Human Rights and Empire’ and ‘The idea of Communism’ (edited with Slavoj Zizek). He has just published ‘Resistance and Philosophy in the Crisis: Politics Ethics and Station Syntagma’ (Alexandria, Athens) a discussion of new types of disobedience and resistance in Greece and around the world.
- Nick Dearden – Director of Jubilee Debt Campaign. The Campaign is a coalition, with over 80 national organisations and part of of a global movement demanding freedom from the slavery of unjust debts and a new financial system that puts people first. It is calling for the unpayable debts of the poorest countries to be cancelled. Nick worked at radical charity War on Want before moving to Amnesty International UK where he played a lead role in developing their new global priority campaign on poverty and economic, social and cultural rights.
On 12 February, the Greek Government, led by the unelected PM Mr Lucas Papadimos, former vice-president of the European Central Bank, signed a second bailout demanding new savage austerity measures.
- Has Greece’s Constitution been jeopardised to accommodate the interests of financial institutions, the IMF, European Central Bank?
- Has the level of austerity imposed on Greek people – unheard of in peacetime Europe – shut any possibility for economic recovery?
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The “austerity package”, seeks to impose a 32% cut in the minimum wage for those under 25, a 22% cut for the over 25s. Already unemployment for 15-24-year-olds is 48%. Overall unemployment has increased to over 20%. In addition, the “package” demands further cuts to pensions and public service pay, wholesale privatisation of state assets, and cuts to public services including health, social welfare and education.