Athens is burning tonight, as leftists and others protest against the Greek Parliament’s vote in favor of the measures that are required by the EU in exchange for a 130 billion Euro bailout–enough to keep Greece afloat for now, at least. The rioters have nothing intelligent or constructive to say. They believe, evidently, that Greeks are entitled to consume far more than they produce, forever. Nice work if you can get it.
This panoramic view of Athens in flames is via InstaPundit:
Here, rioters use fire to fight the policemen who are trying to keep order:
One irony of the Greek crisis is that politicians and commentators alike seem to assume that cutting government spending, lowering the minimum wage, etc., will cause Greece’s economy to decline further. Reuters, for example, says:
The rebellion and street violence foreshadowed the problems the government faces in implementing the cuts, which include a 22 percent reduction in the minimum wage – a package critics say condemns the Greek economy to an ever-deeper downward spiral.
Actually, cutting government spending and reducing the minimum wage are precisely the kinds of measures needed to get Greece’s economy moving again. Of course, that assumes that there are enough Greeks left who want to work and produce; if there aren’t, government policies are more or less irrelevant.