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13 October, 2012

Some methods of disorientation in Greek crisis

by system failure

Here are some methods and tactics of disorientation of public opinion from the systemic establishment during the Greek crisis. Of course, they can be called “conspiracy theories” from those who do not believe them.

Contrived disagreements

Contrived disagreements between government partners. Are used to give the impression that since there are disagreements between government partners, there is a factor inside the government coalition that can impose red lines and negotiations at least on some issues in order to maintain some benefits for the people, and also give the impression that there are no pre-decided facts. In this case, the role of the “bad guy” must be played by the ex-liberals and current neoliberals of the Greek Right-wing, against the more “sensitive” to people's rights “Socialists” and moderate Leftists of PASOK and Dimocratiki Aristera (Democratic Left) respectively.

Contrived disagreements between government officials and representatives of the troika. Are used to persuade the public that the government resists against some of the troika demands without saying “yes to all”. Since all the measures that the creditors want have already decided and agreed, the troika representatives will possibly quit from some of the additional measures that they demand, in order to help the Greek government to stabilize its position by giving the picture of a government which is negotiating and resisting at some level. The more the creditors will gain, the better for the full success of the Greek experiment. In this case, the role of the “bad guy” must be played by the representative of IMF Poul Thomsen, a role that the Greek media gave to him, in order to present him as the most relentless between the troika representatives, as if he is taking decisions alone without any guidance.

Contrived disagreements between the troika representatives. Are used to give the impression that the troika representatives often take decisions independently due to their knowledge and experience, and that they express freely their disagreements, and also, that there is no group of specific interests at least in a European level that promotes specific policies by guiding them. The disagreements have passed currently at a higher level between the European creditors and IMF, in order to justify the supposed different approaches of the creditors. However, at this higher level, it is the European creditors that appear more relentless, demanding more cuts in pensions and wages than the IMF. All these bad tactics and misalignment between the creditors and the Greek bank-occupied media of systemic propaganda, reveal for one more time, that the only goal they have is to promote specific neoliberal policies for the benefit of the big capital and banking interests. Besides, Christine Lagarde's recent statement about the need for more cuts in wages in Greece in the name of competition, as well as the troika's demand that the Greek government should not ask now the nearly 500 million euros from the Greek banks which they owe to the Greek state only from the first bailout package back in 2008 but proceed to further cuts in wages and pensions instead, reveals clearly the full alignment between the troika parts which are dedicated to their real goal.

Methods of disorientation

"Cleaning" operations of illegal immigrants from the government. Are used to disorientate the public from the new cruel measures. Through this tactic, the government aims to regain the part of the society which is most vulnerable to the repercussions of illegal immigration, by giving the impression that is determined to deal directly with the problem. In this case, the role of the mainstream media is also critical.

Disorientation of the public opinion through the mainstream media news and stilted discussion shows. The systemic journalists are using phrases-cliche like “the people cannot bear any more”, “the rich must pay” etc, giving the impression that are sympathize with the majority, while on the other hand, they announce continuous cuts in pensions and wages and refering to the inability of the state to proceed in the so called “structural reforms”, which refer exclusively to the shrinking of the public sector and the privatizations. In this case, they are usually using the phrase “small and flexible public sector” suggesting in reality more job cuts in the public sector avoiding to support this straightly. On the other hand, the pressure for privatizations is used as a blackmail, since the same journalists support that, if the privatizations had been made fast, the government could avoid the pressure of the troika for more cuts in pensions and wages. But they are hiding the fact that the fast-track privatizations in reality mean, for a start, basically three things: further job cuts in the name of the viability of any private corporation, further tax cuts for the big capital as an exchange for undertaking the “problematic” public sector businesses and services, and selling at extremely low prices - much below their real value - the public sector businesses to the big capital that supports government, among which can be found the owners of the largest private media for which the systemic journalists are working.

Additionally, the mainstream media “discover” every day various cases of deceit and corruption which refer exclusively to corrupted public sector employees, people that do not have the right to receive pension, or other similar cases, giving the impression that the problem comes exclusively from this type of corruption, in order to hide the big responsibilities of the banks. On the other hand, they are using a language of triumphalism when a new bank merging is about to happen, supporting that this is good for the economy. While in reality, the bank mergings create “Too Big to Fail” banks, stronger bank cartels that will demand more and more bailout packages at the expense of the taxpayers, putting the national economy at an increasingly worse position and loading the future generations with more debt.

The hypocrisy of the bankers is remarkable since they announce that they are willing to pay the 500 million that they owe only from the first bailout package, while on the other hand they are mobilizing their connections and influence inside the troika so that the troika now asks from the Greek government not to “disturb” banks by asking them to pay, but to proceed instead to further cuts as an easy alternative source for the equivalent amount.

Recent examples of disorientation operations

On 27 July of 2012 the big scandal of “selling” the healthy part of the public bank Agrotiki to the private bank Piraeus is finalized. Just three days before, on 24 July of 2012, Panagiotis Roumeliotis - ex-representative of Greece in IMF and currently vice chairman at Piraeus bank – in a statement to NY Times supports that: “We knew at the fund from the very beginning that this program was impossible to be implemented because we didn’t have any successful example...”. The statement was spread rapidly from the Greek media. With this “honest confession”, Roumeliotis says something that nearly everyone knows: that the IMF policies have been followed dogmatically since they have been unsuccessful everywhere they applied. The bankers are playing the card of IMF, knowing that nearly noone believes in its good intensions anyway, in an attempt to distract the pubic attention from the big scandal which is about to come three days later.

However, it seems that during the next days this tactic was about to fail, since a significant part of the opposition in the Greek parliament as well as several indepentent Greek blogs and websites were speaking clearly about a big scandal refering to the “selling” of Agrotiki bank to Piraeus bank, while they were revealing all the details of this action, something which the mainstream media rushed to hide through a simple announcement. Next, as more and more people were focusing on the real scandal, Roumeliotis was called to testify to the authorities in order for his statement to gain officialy the appropriate importance, in a new attempt to distract the public attention. The official state was fully co-ordinated with the banking establishment to distract the public attention, while normally, the state authorities should have call the architects of the real scandal to give explanations about the fact that the healthy part of a public bank was given to a private bank with the money of the taxpayers and the “garbage” remains were loaded to them.

Ghost lists of names involved with political corruption. The government is trying to appear as determined to fight against the political corruption and the big tax fraudsters which sent illegally their money abroad. Therefore, there is a possibility of contrived supposed leaks or real blackmails between politicians and people who involved with political corruption. But, as usual, noone knows nothing. Politicians are making public statements-cliche like “deep research must be done immediately” or “everything must be revealed” etc, in order to appear as they have nothing to hide. However, the unwillingness of the state to chase the tax fraudsters is quite obvious. The government is trying to find excuses, more than two years now, claiming that the lists of the tax fraudsters came through interception and therefore it has no legal right to check their deposits, or, that the authorities of Switzerland do not allow the checking of the bank deposits, or various other excuses. Therefore, this disorientation tactic fails dramatically.

All the above are just an example. Anyone can find much more to add.

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