World View: Eurozone Demands Six-Day Work Week for Greece

World View: Eurozone Demands Six-Day Work Week for Greece

This morning’s key headlines from GenerationalDynamics.com

  • Bullfights to the death being televised in Spain and Portugal
  • Eurozone demands that Greeks should work six days a week
  • Six thousand would-be immigrants wait in Turkey to be smuggled into Greece
  • Televised speeches
  • Israel’s government flailing over whether to attack Iran

Bullfights to the death being televised in Spain and Portugal

Televised bullfights were banned by Spain’s Socialist government in2005, but that government was ousted last November, and the primeminister Mariano Rajoy is a staunch defender of bullfights. Sobullfights returned to Spain’s state TV in a glittering display onWednesday evening. Bullfighting is a major part of Spain’s psyche andhistory, and the centuries-old events inspired the likes of Goya,Picasso and Hemingway. Televising bullfights is illegal in most ofPortugal, the exception being Barrancos, near the Spanish border. Theissue there has been the televising of bullfights where the bull iskilled, but a special law authorizing airing bullfights to the deathwas passed in 2002. Animal rights activists say that bullfighting iscruel and vulgar, while bullfighting proponents point out that it’s apopular tourist attraction. Newser and The Portugal News

Eurozone demands that Greeks should work six days a week

A leaked letter from the “troika” of organizations bailing out Greece — theEuropean Commission (EC), the European Central Bank (ECB) and the InternationalMonetary Fund (IMF) — contains a list of demands that Greece must implementin return for further bailouts. The demands include the following: 

  • Increase the number of maximum workdays to six days per week for all sectors.
  • Increase flexibility of work schedules; set the minimum daily rest to 11 hours; delink the working hours of employees from the opening hours of the establishment; eliminate restrictions on minimum/maximum time between morning and afternoon shifts; allow the consecutive two-week leave to be taken anytime during the year in seasonal sectors.
  • Have a permanent single-rate statutory minimum wage.
  • Reduce employers’ welfare contributions.

Greece’s prime minister Antonis Samaras is pleading with the Troika togive him two more years to implement austerity reforms, and the leakedletter reveals the detail of eurozone intrusion into Greece’s economyand social culture that will be demanded in return for the delay,which would require a third bailout. However, many Greeks say thatthey will refuse to work six days per week. 

One policeman is quotedas saying: “They have slashed our salary by 50 per cent and arethreatening even more cuts – now they are demanding that we workeven more days for less money? No one in their right mind willstand for it!”

Troika officials will be arriving in Athens on Friday to discuss theplan. Guardian (London) and Deutsche-Presse Agentur

Six thousand would-be immigrants wait in Turkey to be smuggled into Greece

The land border between Turkey and Greece has been effectively closedto illegal immigration, because of a massive crackdown by Greek borderguards. Migrants try to get into Greece as a pathway to the rest ofEurope, where they hope to find jobs. But with the land borderclosed, the last two weeks have seen a surge of migrants from theTurkish coast entering Greece via the islands of the Aegean Sea. Asmany as 6,000 would-be immigrants are currently gathered inneighboring Turkey, waiting their turn to board smuggling ships tobring them to Greece. Kathimerini

Televised speeches

With all the economic and geopolitical problems in the world, I can’tbelieve that as I’m writing this I’m listening to a speech televisedon all networks by a young female whining that some women have to payfor their own contraceptives. To paraphrase Clarence Thomas in 1991,this is a national disgrace. 

Israel’s government flailing over whether to attack Iran

Israel’s prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu immediately adjourned acabinet meeting on Wednesday, because there had been leaks from theprevious day’s meeting. According to the leaked story, the members ofthe security cabinet were shocked to hear that the country’s differentintelligence agencies – the Mossad, Shin Bet, and Army Intelligence -do not agree about the time frame for a potential Iranian attack.I’ve been reading for almost ten years that an attack on Iran’snuclear facilities was imminent, but it’s never happened. I continueto expect that it won’t happen at all, and the confusion within Israelis an example of why I don’t expect it to happen. We’ll see.Jerusalem Post

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