Επισκεφτείτε το ΜπλεΜήλο όπου μαζί με τον Στέφανο Αθανασιάδη και τον Τηλέμαχο Χορμοβίτη γράφουμε ένα blog που ανανεώνεται καθημερινά. Συνέχεια

Παρασκευή, 29 Φεβρουαρίου 2008

Modern Greece: Decadence Unbound

The Egnatia Motorway across the north of Greece is one of the ‘largest road construction projects in Europe’. Six hundred and eighty kilometers long and 24.5 meters wide, it requires the construction of 1,650 bridges, 74 tunnels, 50 interchanges, 43 river and 11 railway crossings. A modern Greek marvel in the making where at least half of the costs are financed by the European Union. In Greece today, a plethora of public works are completed or in progress thanks to the generous aid of the EU. Billions in funds have been transferred southward to the EU’s only Balkan state member since its entry in 1981. By the 1990s, that assistance averaged about 3.5 per cent of GDP yearly.
To put it in perspective, it would be as if the U.K. received around $87 billion from the EU in 2007. For almost a quarter of a century, Greece has been the beneficiary of a European willingness to become one cohesive whole, but despite all the bridges, ports, tunnels, roads and agricultural subsidies, Greece remains as far away from the European core as it did when it joined the Union. Συνέχεια

Πέμπτη, 28 Φεβρουαρίου 2008

Σε ολισθηρό δρόμο...

Tου Πασχου Μανδραβελη

Η πρώτη έκπληξη της υπόθεσης είναι η ταχύτητα με την οποία κινήθηκαν οι ελληνικές αρχές. Ενώ πήρε δύο χρόνια για να ζητηθεί δικαστική συνδρομή για τις δωροδοκίες από τη Siemens και ακόμη δεν μάθαμε τίποτε, για την υπόθεση του blog που δημοσίευε ανώνυμες συκοφαντίες και ύβρεις τα πράγματα κινήθηκαν ταχύτατα (στο πλαίσιο, πάντα, της λειτουργίας του ελληνικού κράτους). Μετά όμως αρχίζουν τα ερωτήματα.
Το πρώτο ερώτημα είναι, πώς στοιχειοθετείται ο εκβιασμός; Δύο ανώνυμα ηλεκτρονικά γράμματα μπορεί να είναι εκβιασμός, μπορεί και φάρσα. Στις περιπτώσεις των εκβιασμών η πάγια τακτική των αρχών είναι να υποκρίνεται το θύμα ότι ενδίδει, ώστε να παραδώσει στον εκβιαστή σημαδεμένα χαρτονομίσματα για να υπάρξει σύλληψη επ’ αυτοφώρω. Στη συγκεκριμένη περίπτωση γιατί δεν έγινε κάτι ανάλογο; Συνέχεια

Τετάρτη, 27 Φεβρουαρίου 2008

Οι παγίδες του Μάθιου Νίμιτς

Του Σταυρου Λυγερου

Η Αθήνα έχει αντικειμενικά τη δυνατότητα να επιβάλει έναν έντιμο συμβιβασμό. Αυτό, όμως, δεν αρκεί. Πρέπει να αποδείξει ότι διαθέτει και τη βούληση και την ικανότητα να αξιοποιήσει αυτήν τη δυνατότητα. Ο Μάθιου Νίμιτς έχει προτείνει πέντε εναλλακτικές ονομασίες, εκ των οποίων μόνο η μία (Ανω Μακεδονία) είναι ουσιαστικά σύνθετη. Στις υπόλοιπες τέσσερις, ο επιθετικός προσδιορισμός αφορά το πολίτευμα (Republic) και όχι τον όρο Μακεδονία. Γι’ αυτό και πρέπει να απορριφθούν κατηγορηματικά από την Ελλάδα. Συνέχεια

William F. Buckley Jr. Is Dead at 82

William F. Buckley Jr., who marshaled polysyllabic exuberance, famously arched eyebrows and a refined, perspicacious mind to elevate conservatism to the center of American political discourse, died Wednesday at his home in Stamford, Conn.
Mr Buckley, 82, suffered from diabetes and emphysema, his son Christopher said, although the exact cause of death was not immediately known. He was found at his desk in the study of his home, his son said. “He might have been working on a column,” Mr. Buckley said.
Mr. Buckley’s winningly capricious personality, replete with ten-dollar words and a darting tongue writers loved to compare with an anteater’s, hosted one of television’s longest-running programs, “Firing Line,” and founded and shepherded the influential conservative magazine, “National Review.” Συνέχεια

The Last Europe

Every age fathers its own illusions and in the postwar Europe there were plenty of opportunities. Europe’s threats were contained by America and its material needs glutted by a postwar recovery. It seemed as if the continent could carry on without the ordinary constraints of survival and it could indulge itself in a world where a cut off between means and ends, causes and effects was not only imaginable but also possible. Now the Europeans would not have to face any of the predicaments, make any sacrifices or contemplate any of the awful dilemmas of that previous time. We were to encounter a gentle reality where grave crises existed outside a diminishing European jurisdiction and where the mastery for dealing with these crises became superfluous. Συνέχεια

Τρίτη, 26 Φεβρουαρίου 2008

Do BBC Reporters Get 70 Virgins When They Die?

BBC’s correspondent of religious affairs, Frances Harrison has another politically correct report on the Cartoon controversy. As per usual, the context – free speech/Muslim intolerance – is missing from the piece. It all becomes another report of how Europeans have difficulty accepting the OTHER.
This is how the article starts, with a quote from an Imam:
“We will keep on working for integration, to build bridges. If you don’t know who is Muhammad I am telling you please read about Muhammad,” said the imam.
Imam, I wouldn’t worry about that, in a few years reading about Muhammad will be mandatory in Danish schools. Συνέχεια

Δευτέρα, 25 Φεβρουαρίου 2008

Déjà Vu: An Excess of Inconvenient Similarities

No talk about decline and decadence is able to avoid a mention or two of the last days of Rome. It’s a cliché inside a banality wrapped in a truism. But in the case of European politics it’s an urge that simply cannot be helped.
Take for instance what actually worries the European political class. Is it the declining economic prospects of the continent? Is it the deadly demographics? Is it a growing and increasingly fanatical minority within its borders? The answer is none of the above. Συνέχεια

Κυριακή, 24 Φεβρουαρίου 2008

Big Government, Grande Miseria

The New York Times has a slide show A Life less Dolce, “in a funk, Italy sings an aria of disappointment.” It’s a splendid visualization of the declining welfare state model. Along with the pictures we learn that