The strike wave in Europe and
the decay of Western democracy

Barry Grey

Worker protests in the streets of Paris

"A measure of wheat for a penny [literally - denarius, a Greek coin which represented a WHOLE DAYS wages], and three measures of barley for a penny; and see thou hurt not the oil and the wine." (Rev. 6:6)

NOTE: The meaning of this lyric is that the condition of man during this era (i.e., the "end of days") will be reduced to such that he will have to labor a whole day simply to buy a loaf of bread or three measures of barley. But the second part of the lyric [i.e., "... and see thou hurt not the oil and the wine ..."] means that the "hard times" of this period will not extend to the elites. This is the common interpretation - the one subscribed to by Ryrie, Pentecost, Ironside, Gaebelein, etc.


Rule by the rich inevitably means a dictatorship

The rich have no idea concerning the economic injustice they have wrought

One of the most important dynamics in the world today is the increasing speed at which REAL democracy is disappearing in the world - contrary to what one hears being trumpeted from the mainline press. The fact is, the world is not becoming more democratic, but less - and it is being driven forward in this process by the ever quickening pace of globalization and the inexorable division of the world into a small elite of wealthy "worthies" and a huge population of indigent "worker-serfs" - a division that follows in the wake of the globalization process as surely as water flows downhill. [Please see our article, "The Third World as a Model for the New World Order."]

And it is important to note here that the division of the earth's population in this fashion is occurring not only in the so-called "Developing World," but in the so-called "Developed World" as well.

OBVIOUSLY, UNDER THE IMPRESS OF THIS KIND OF MALIGNANT DYNAMIC, DEMOCRACY IS NOT WORKABLE. Why? - because in societies where people are ground into the dirt by the crush of the powerful, those responsible cannot then expect those they have beaten down to endorse what they have done through the so-called "democratic process."

In other words, when the elites force the poor into various states of poverty, they cannot then expect these workers to endorse this kind of brutality through the ballot box. Democracy - REAL democracy - is not something the elites would want to endorse in this kind of situation.

It's tantamount to giving the whip to the slaves and expecting the slaves to willingly give it back so that they can be beaten all the more! At best, in such situations democracy must be reduced to a sham - the way it was in the South during the era of Jim Crow where blacks (and the poor in general) were "limited" in their access to the "democratic process." [We urge you to acquaint yourself with this dynamic insofar as Europe is concerned, a dynamic that has been unleashed on Europe by the machinations of the American New World Order System: "The Rise of Fascism in Europe."]

- Antipas


Huge strikes in France that the American press is not really reporting on.

The growing struggles of working people in Europe and internationally against mass unemployment and government austerity policies are exposing the reality behind the fašade of Western democracy. In every country, the government, whether conservative or nominally "left," is cutting jobs and wages and slashing social programs in complete disregard to the overwhelming opposition of the population.

Elections and parliamentary debates have no effect on policy. The state does the bidding of the financial aristocracy, tearing up the living standards of average people in the interests of the bankers who are responsible for the economic crisis. The financiers and corporate executives are making more money than ever by exploiting mass unemployment and growing social distress to slash wages and increase the exploitation of average citizens. [Please see our article, "The Elites Want High Unemployment."]

Where the best efforts of the government-controlled trade unions do not suffice to hold the workers in check and struggles break out that challenge the plans of the bankers, most prominently in France and Greece, the state uses its powers of repression to smash strikes and protests. In France, the Sarkozy government has deployed riot police to break up strikers' blockades of oil depots and attack protesting students with tear gas and rubber bullets, arresting hundreds across the country.

NOTE: The American press is reporting that the strikes in France are simply about moving the retirement age from 60 to 62; THIS IS A HORRIBLE MISREPRESENTATION OF THE TRUTH. What it's really about is shifting the economic burden for the current recession in France from the elites who caused it to workingmen and women. The fact that retirement was set in France at age 60 was a sop from the elites to the workers of France some years ago in lieu of raising wages. It should also be noted that no one in France retires at age 60; the amount of money one would get if he did so is so paltry that there is no possibility that one could live on it. The actual age of retirement in France is somewhere around 70 years - five years later than the retirement age in the US. It's only then that retirement pays enough to keep "body and soul" alive.

In Greece, the social democratic PASOK government, elected with the support of the unions, deployed the military to break a strike by truckers in August. Last week, the same government used riot police and tear gas against culture ministry employees occupying the Acropolis to protest mass layoffs. [Please see our article "Europe Is Going from Bad to Worse."]

Despite these attacks, the resistance of average people is growing. The current wave of strikes and protests in France is the most developed expression of a new stage in the struggle between every-day people and the financial elites. It marks a shift in the world political situation of historic proportions. [Please see our article, "The Decline and Fall of the Euro."]

Recent days have seen the spread of the strike movement in France, the outbreak of a strike in Greece that has paralyzed the country's rail system, and a demonstration of hundreds of thousands in Rome protesting the policies of the Berlusconi government.

There have been one-day general strikes and mass protests in Spain, Portugal and Ireland, strikes by workers in Romania, and powerful strikes by auto workers in China and by workers in India, Cambodia and Bangladesh.

In Britain, the Conservative-Liberal Democrat coalition government is imposing historically unprecedented cuts totaling 83 billion pounds, which will mean the loss of at least 500,000 jobs in the public sector and another 500,000 in the private sector.

British workers have repeatedly sought to resist the government-corporate onslaught, but have to this point been stymied by the treachery of the trade unions, which - like their counter-parts in the United States - oppose any serious strike action. London tube workers have struck against privatization and mass layoffs, prompting the government to draw up anti-strike legislation. BBC and British Airways workers have voted for strike action, but the union leaders have refused to call them out.

In the US, the inability of the White House and the Democratic Party to in any way distance themselves from the corporate-financial elite has been underscored by the administration's actions over the past week, just two weeks before the congressional elections.

The UAW has become nothing more than a government-sponsored union

The administration has announced that Social Security recipients will receive no cost-of-living increase, and rejected calls for a moratorium on home foreclosures.

The growing opposition of working Americans is finding expression in an incipient rebellion by workers against the United Auto Workers union, which is seeking to make the 50 percent wage cut for newly hired workers worked out last year between itself, the auto bosses and the government the new baseline for the industry.

The contempt of the American elite for the democratic will of the people was summed up in an editorial on the events in France published Tuesday by the New York Times. The major organ of the "liberal" Democratic Party establishment acknowledged that there is broad support in the French population for the strikes and protests against Sarkozy. "Despite the widespread inconvenience and economic losses," it wrote, "public opinion has remained sympathetic to the unions." (French polls show upwards of 70 percent supporting the strikers).

This did not prevent the Times from insisting, "France's Parliament should give final approval to the reform bill this week."

What is emerging in the experience of hundreds of millions of people around the world is the incompatibility of today's economic system with their most basic needs. What's happening today is exposing Western democracy as little more than a fig leaf for the dictatorship of the banks and corporations over economic and political life.

A revolution against the world's present economic system is underway!

The rich are preparing for a revolution - and they intend to use ALL the power of the state to stop it.

We need your help to spread the word concerning Antipas Ministries and the eschatological viewpoint it represents; WE NEED YOUR HELP BECAUSE WE DO NOT "LINK" WITH OTHER SO-CALLED "CHRISTIAN" WEBSITES which are, for the most part, "in the tank" insofar as their loyalty to the United States is concerned - a loyalty that has made them partners in the BLOODY trail the American military has left in its TERROR-RIDDEN rampage throughout the world, as well as making them partners in the abject poverty that American corporations have imposed on the peoples and nations the American military machine has ravaged - A BLOODY, TERROR-RIDDEN RAMPAGE THAT HAS TO A LARGE DEGREE BEEN CARRIED OUT IN THE NAME OF THE "PRINCE OF PEACE." [Please see our articles, "The Third World as a Model for the New World Order," Inside the American New World Order System" and "The American Empire: The Corporate / Pentagon / CIA / Missionary Archipelago."]



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