Live your democratic myth in Greece

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Saim
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Re: Live your democratic myth in Greece

Postby Saim » 2013-10-17, 9:37

There's nothing I can say but: :shock: . Scared and disgusted, and shocked I haven't heard about the extent of this sooner!

I'm also worried this can spread to other parts of Europe. The comic you posed earlier that showed Franquisme - Transició - Democràcia is a truth like a house (veritat com una casa) as people would say here. The government, police and corporations are full of children and grandchildren of Francoists. The head of El Corte Inglés is a falangista leader, the dominant party in most of Spain is the PP which was founded by Fraga, one of Franco's ministers... there have also been fascist attacks in Valencia and other parts of Spain with little action from the police. If Catalonia and the Basque Country split of and Spain is forced by the EU to accept even less fair conditions, there could be definitely be growth in right-wing populism...

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Re: Live your democratic myth in Greece

Postby md0 » 2013-10-17, 11:21

I remember what Lur mentioned at some point. It seems like the successors of the dictatorship are way more overt in Spain. In Greece, it was more like "if we don't talk about them, they will go away". So after the dictatorship fell in 1974 (not before ruining Cyprus for good), the new democratic government offered a general amnesty to alls who "followed orders during the dictatorship" and did not reform the army and the police... Noble idea, taking the high road blah blah blah... Not only the "eggs of the Junta" have hatched, they reached maturity and they went out hunting. And the current regime is trying to equate those neofascists with everyone who's protesting. Protesting about a mining project? Same crime as serial killing by Golden Dawn. You protest your unfair dismissal? Same crime as Golden Dawn. "Endangering national interests"

Last week I leant that in Cyprus, it's the fire fighting dept that's infested by Golden Dawn (the Cyprus Cell, ELAM). That's why the ten little nazists are always around when a fire breaks out and pretend to help put it out as it was the modus operandi of GD in Greece too.
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Re: Live your democratic myth in Greece

Postby md0 » 2013-10-21, 21:58

As for freedom of press in Greece
http://www.thepressproject.gr/article/4 ... a-tou-OEDB

The Big 3 Media companies (some 90% of the market) got billions from the government 1 week after being elected (so, that was June 2012), to print some school books. No contract or public competition as it should happen. Direct appointment. 2,3 billion euros split among the three media outlets to print books already available from the original publishers.
No doubt it was the government's "thank you gift" to the media that supported them. Only that's public money, not the ruling party's funds.
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Re: Live your democratic myth in Greece

Postby md0 » 2013-10-24, 11:16

The executive order expires 4 months and ten days after it is issued. Then the Parliament needs to ratify it, or it is annulled.

And the order lapsed yesterday. Starting today, the government is as illegal as it gets. What they did is in violation of the constitution, contrary to two court decisions, and in violation of a dozen of labour laws.

But ERT is not restored. Instead, the government managed to get the ASTRA satellite provider to cancel the contract between POSPERT (ERT's trade union) and the satellite provider. A private contract between a European company and a European organisation is cancelled by a national government.

ERT's satellite capacity will be removed in less than four hours. That will be a huge blow the ERT's population coverage (which retained surprising coverage for 4 months now, including an HD channel, for a network that "doesn't exist"), because all terrestrial links are supplied by the sat transmission. When the sat goes down, only the antenna on the ERT building will be working, and it can barely cover the city of Athens.
The radio silence will make it easy for the police to intervene. ERT wasn't oppressed immediately because they had the power of broadcasting, unlike other marginalised groups.
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Re: Live your democratic myth in Greece

Postby Патрислав Андреевич » 2013-11-10, 0:23

Removed because reasons.
Last edited by Патрислав Андреевич on 2013-11-20, 22:19, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Live your democratic myth in Greece

Postby ego » 2013-11-17, 22:53

I don't know if I want to cry or laugh with all these I've just read. Meidei has declared the end of democracy in Greece and everyone else, in awe and despair, cries over the ruins.

Relax guys. I'm a 33yo Greek, I follow the political affairs very closely and I can reassure you Greece is still democratic. A democracy with many flaws but a democracy. And I believe democracy in Greece is actually on the right track for the first time since many many years. For the first time the government is composed by more than one parties. Parties are slowly learning to cooperate. The current government is a coalition of the conservatives, the socialists, and the leftish. The second party (to which the screaming lady in the video belongs), the neo-marxist (yes, in Greece in 2013 many people still like Stalin :ohwell: ) SYRIZA was also invited - even pushed - to join but refused. It prefers to stay out and fantasise about an alleged attack on democracy. Elections occurred only 17 months ago and they were fair - nobody ever contested them. Not even SYRIZA. This is by far one of the most democratic governments we've had as it represents a wide range of voters.

The government does not cooperate with Golden Dawn as meidei implies. Actually a couple of months ago the leaders of Golden Dawn, including its president, were put into jail. But let's face it: as long as this horrible crisis continues some people will be very angry and will vote for GD. Sad but true. Definitely not the government's fault. It is actually more the fault of the far left but that's a very long discussion.

The current government is trying to impose the law on a society that has been largely lawless and corrupted for the last 30 years (with the results we all see today). As natural as may seem to you, law enforcement in Greece has been anything but natural - it was indeed a rarity. It is normal that many people do not like how the current government tries to change this mentality. They prefer the previous state of affairs and they accuse the government of attacking democracy because it tries to impose the law. It's not. Law enforcement is a prerequisite for democracy.

For all these reasons I believe that democracy in Greece today is on the right track. The only serious threat to democracy is populism. And unfortunately the current opposition is very populist. Greeks need to learn how to think properly, how to criticise themselves for what happened, how to learn from their mistakes. The opposition though tells them that they did nothing wrong, this crisis is simply an international capitalistic conspiracy against Greece. All the Greeks need to do is vote for SYRIZA and suddenly the crisis will be over, salaries will double and we will all live in a paradise. Now this is not how you teach people how to think, this is not how you create good, responsible voters who can defend democracy. That's another very long discussion though.

Just a final remark: the lady who shouts in the video is a well known figure. Every day she is on the news shouting hysterically about another alleged anti-democratic action by the government. She never listens, never enters a dialogue - she merely screams and blames. Personally I think she is a disgrace for the Greek parliament. I don't know what happened in this vote in the video. Nor do you. Maybe the vote took place before the video shot and the president was simply announcing the results.

Meidei, I respect that you sympathise with the opposition in Greece, and you have every right to criticise the government. Everything you have written here is basically the mottos of SYRIZA, we read and hear them every day. But criticism is one thing and trying to convince our foreign friends that Greece is a junta is another; it goes beyond criticism, it's unfair and it's too much. And it's not democratic. Just as you have the right to support the opposition, the democratically elected government too and those who support it have the right to rule the country - it's democracy, respect it. Calling your opponents names such as "fascists, junta, regime" etc etc, is not really contributing towards a democracy, is it?

I won't enter a dialogue here because there is no point. But please everyone: don't believe everything they tell you and always try to hear what the other side has to say too.

Just for the record: when I was your age I voted for SYRIZA too. Later I finished the uni, found a job, saw how the world really is and changed my mind. Sorry for this long post
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Re: Live your democratic myth in Greece

Postby Ludwig Whitby » 2013-11-17, 23:14

If you don't want a dialogue, that's fine, but a dialogue is never pointless. I mean, the point isn't to convince the other that they are wrong or to resolve all issues. The point is to talk about those issues in a friendly manner.


A propos the last thing you wrote. You were a socialist when you were an unemployed student with an uncertain future and now that you have managed to secure your existence you have become more conservative and right-wing, if I understood you right. I think that you should think more about that. You can't seriously stop at the explanation ''I saw how the world really is''.

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Re: Live your democratic myth in Greece

Postby ego » 2013-11-17, 23:22

Ludwig Whitby wrote:If you don't want a dialogue, that's fine, but a dialogue is never pointless. I mean, the point isn't to convince the other that they are wrong or to resolve all issues. The point is to talk about those issues in a friendly manner.


A propos the last thing you wrote. You were a socialist when you were an unemployed student with an uncertain future and now that you have managed to secure your existence you have become more conservative and right-wing, if I understood you right. I think that you should think more about that. You can't seriously stop at the explanation ''I saw how the world really is''.


I agree with you. I gave you my opinion, I wanted you to see that what meidei says is just his opinion, not the opinion of all Greeks. But as you said I won't try to convince anyone. Thanks to this crisis politics is already occupying a too large amount of time in my life, I don't want more.

I wasn't unemployed when I voted for SYRIZA. I was a student. I wasn't looking for a job. And I was well off. Yes, sometimes you need to see the real world (i.e. the world of workers who live on their own job and not on their parents' money) to judge properly.

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Re: Live your democratic myth in Greece

Postby md0 » 2013-11-17, 23:37

Where to start and where to end, to calque from Greece.
First of all, Syriza is a Stalinist party? :lol: It's a populist social democratic party at best. PASOKv2.
And I do sympathise with Syriza? :P I've been known to critisize their populism almost as often as I critisize the governing party. (And now, I don't support some of the minor opposition parties either. I am politically very lonely, but I know better than to side with the extreme-right wing).
Also, if your idea of democracy includes double-digit number of executive orders in a 12 month period, then sure, Greece is certainly in the right track.

And finally, laws are only good when they are fair. Imposing unjust laws isn't a positive thing, and I won't celebrate this "wave of lawfulness" with you. Which it isn't even lawful, because the parliament barely even takes part in it. But sure, since they have the power enforce the laws, they are lawful. Doesn't make the specific laws good though.
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Re: Live your democratic myth in Greece

Postby Ludwig Whitby » 2013-11-18, 12:21

ego wrote:
Ludwig Whitby wrote:If you don't want a dialogue, that's fine, but a dialogue is never pointless. I mean, the point isn't to convince the other that they are wrong or to resolve all issues. The point is to talk about those issues in a friendly manner.


A propos the last thing you wrote. You were a socialist when you were an unemployed student with an uncertain future and now that you have managed to secure your existence you have become more conservative and right-wing, if I understood you right. I think that you should think more about that. You can't seriously stop at the explanation ''I saw how the world really is''.


I agree with you. I gave you my opinion, I wanted you to see that what meidei says is just his opinion, not the opinion of all Greeks. But as you said I won't try to convince anyone. Thanks to this crisis politics is already occupying a too large amount of time in my life, I don't want more.

I wasn't unemployed when I voted for SYRIZA. I was a student. I wasn't looking for a job. And I was well off. Yes, sometimes you need to see the real world (i.e. the world of workers who live on their own job and not on their parents' money) to judge properly.

There is no 'real world'. There are only different perspectives and the perspective of those workers that you mentioned, those who live on their own jobs shouldn't be considered the only true perspective.

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Re: Live your democratic myth in Greece

Postby ego » 2013-11-20, 20:52

meidei wrote:First of all, Syriza is a Stalinist party? :lol: It's a populist social democratic party at best. PASOKv2.


We disagree here. The president of SYRIZA was "politically shaped" within the communist youth. And the left-most part of SYRIZA is definitely communist. In SYRIZA gatherings people carry flags with the hammer and sickle. That being said, indeed a large part of SYRIZA is closer to socialdemocracy than communism. But you would be surprised of how many Marxists are there in the party. There is a massive difference between what SYRIZA represents and what is known in Europe as social-democracy. To me, SYRIZA is very close to Chavez's model. And if it was up to its left wing, it would be closer to Castro's model.

And I do sympathise with Syriza? :P I've been known to critisize their populism almost as often as I critisize the governing party. (And now, I don't support some of the minor opposition parties either.


I'm glad to hear this, however, your arguments in your initial posts were identical to those of SYRIZA. Even the terminology you used.

I am politically very lonely, but I know better than to side with the extreme-right wing).


We agree that ultra-rightness is a mental disability

Also, if your idea of democracy includes double-digit number of executive orders in a 12 month period, then sure, Greece is certainly in the right track.


That was the only valid point you made in your first post. I'd be happy to discuss this and indeed I agree that these executive orders are problematic and they should be avoided. However, we live in very special times as you know, and sometimes the government has no options. Let's face it, Greece is not ruled by the Greek government anymore. At least not entirely. It's up to us to put an end to this anomaly as soon as possible.

And finally, laws are only good when they are fair. Imposing unjust laws isn't a positive thing, and I won't celebrate this "wave of lawfulness" with you. Which it isn't even lawful, because the parliament barely even takes part in it. But sure, since they have the power enforce the laws, they are lawful. Doesn't make the specific laws good though.


Whether or not the laws are good and fair is subjective. You have your opinion but this doesn't mean it's right. Personally I agree with most of the government's policies and laws. When this government was elected (I did not vote for it) I was 100% sure it would be a disaster but I was pleasantly surprised. At the end of the day we will have elections in 2,5 years (probably sooner) and the people will have their chance to show if they find these laws fair or not. Until then, this government has the right to implement its policies.

The most important thing I wanted to make clear basically, is that you cannot ask for more democracy and at the same time use a speech style that cannot be part of a democratic dialogue, call a democratically elected government a "junta" and a "regime" or "ultra-right". This is contradictory. Democracy is based on dialogue. If people don't know how to make dialogue they cannot have good democracy. People and parties in Greece must finally learn how to discuss and respect each other. We must avoid exaggerated and extreme expressions, curses, and anathemas because these simply add to the violent ambient and pave the way for more violence, which may go beyond words. The last time public speech was so extreme was 1960-1967 and we all know what it paved the way for. If you want democracy speak like a democrat. Calling someone a "fascist" because you disagree with him, makes you a fascist, not him. Criticise in a civilised and constructive way without calling names. At the end of the day, the quality of our democracy is not the government's job, it's everyone's job and responsibility.

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Re: Live your democratic myth in Greece

Postby md0 » 2013-11-20, 21:17

We disagree here. The president of SYRIZA was "politically shaped" within the communist youth. And the left-most part of SYRIZA is definitely communist. In SYRIZA gatherings people carry flags with the hammer and sickle. That being said, indeed a large part of SYRIZA is closer to socialdemocracy than communism. But you would be surprised of how many Marxists are there in the party.

Oh god. Red scare in Greece too?
First of all, and that's the main problem with Syriza, is that they do not have a clear line.
But Tsipras has been clear about 3 things: vowed to keep but "renegotiate" the memorandum, said that Greek must stay in the Eurozone and the EU, and that they won't nationalise people's houses. So, that's not KKE. That's PASOK. And it means that he probably won't change anything but the most superficial when he's elected.

As for Marxism, please don't use it as a swearword. While we both have no belief in communism, I do believe that Marx provided a very apt framework to analyse our societies.


I'm glad to hear this, however, your arguments in your initial posts were identical to those of SYRIZA. Even the terminology you used.


Again, because I don't support a populist centre-left party with no clear political line, like Syriza, it doesn't mean that they are wrong about everything.

We agree that ultra-rightness is a mental disability


If we agree on that, how are you comfortable with Samaras as a PM?
From abuse of executive orders, to copying GD rhetoric about immigrants for his election campaign, making Adonis a Minister of Health (who then restored the most horrible health decree Greece have seen in decades, the one about forced HIV tests).
The man is certainly not just a conservative.


That was the only valid point you made in your first post. I'd be happy to discuss this and indeed I agree that these executive orders are problematic and they should be avoided. However, we live in very special times as you know, and sometimes the government has no options. Let's face it, Greece is not ruled by the Greek government anymore. At least not entirely. It's up to us to put an end to this anomaly as soon as possible.

We can discuss that point. When a government has no options, I do believe that they need to reach consensus with the people, amend the law they want to pass to something acceptable. If they can't or are not willing to, they need to step down and hold new elections.
Executive orders to pass laws that even some MPs of the government don't want to vote for... that's not a sacrifice a democracy should be willing to make. It's actually not democracy.


Whether or not the laws are good and fair is subjective. You have your opinion but this doesn't mean it's right. Personally I agree with most of the government's policies and laws. When this government was elected (I did not vote for it) I was 100% sure it would be a disaster but I was pleasantly surprised. At the end of the day we will have elections in 2,5 years (probably sooner) and the people will have their chance to show if they find these laws fair or not. Until then, this government has the right to implement its policies.

Correct me if I am wrong, but the Parliament is the body that has to legislate. Not the government.
For the last 12 months, only non-controversial laws pass from the parliament. The rest is passed through executive orders. And the next 2,5 years will be like that too. "κούτσα-κούτσα να περάσουμεν" is suddenly an acceptable way of governing a country?

As for the language, I know from my discussions with Greeks, there's a sort of self-censorship because people are scared of coming across as extremists. I don't think that I should self-censor myself to be honest. When the Parliament is systematically ignored, that's not democracy. When executive orders expire but the government doesn't reverse the changes as they should do if an executive order isn't ratified by the parliament 4 months after is has been issued, that's not 'rule of law'. And when the government bail-outs private companies like Mega Channel with taxpayer money... hm. What's that? I don't have a word for that :roll:
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Re: Live your democratic myth in Greece

Postby ego » 2013-11-20, 21:31

This discussion could go on for years. Let's just agree that we disagree. I believe you exaggerate a lot about the decrees and you are subjective. I want to make one comment only about Adonis's HIV tests. Prostitutes must prove that they are HIV- to work as prostitutes. In the UK where I work, I have to pass a hepatitis test to be allowed to work as a dentist. If I'm hep+ I cannot work. How's that different? Does this make the UK government ultra-right? In France burkas are banned. Is France not a democracy anymore?

Our democracy is far from perfect. Personally I believe the main problems with Greek democracy are those that had been there before the crisis. The fact that Thrace's Turks are not allowed to call themselves Turks. The fact that Macedonia's Slavic minority is not recognised although everyone knows it exists. The fact that if you go to Epirus and talk about teaching Vlach at schools you will soon have spies after you. The fact that gay couples cannot marry. The fact that the Church and the state are linked. These are serious threats to democracy and they must be dealt with. Not those you mentioned in your posts: these are your subjective opinion, not proof that Greece is a junta and the government an ultra-right "regime". Imperfect democracy and junta are two different things

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Re: Live your democratic myth in Greece

Postby md0 » 2013-11-20, 22:00

This discussion could go on for years. Let's just agree that we disagree.

I take offense to this mentality. Suddenly we are two groups that are dogmatically against each other?
You can go back in 2009 and see that I thought Greece needed to revamp their economy (and that Cyprus would need that too). 4 years after, I am not blinded by my initial support of the idea. I can see that Greece has regressed in pretty much every social index. Freedom of press in Greece is 50 places worse than Cyprus for example. Huge segments of the population experience actual poverty in Greece.

This "agree to disagree" thing it's just a way to present the other person as a dogmatic irrational reactionary.

want to make one comment only about Adonis's HIV tests. Prostitutes must prove that they are HIV- to work as prostitutes. In the UK where I work, I have to pass a hepatitis test to be allowed to work as a dentist. If I'm hep+ I cannot work. How's that different?


You are not familiar with the decree. You are thinking of a whole different law.
It's not about the mandated testing of sex workers, but about forced testing of anyone walking down "suspicious areas", which in 2011 was followed by release of all personal data of HIV+ women arrested and detained in inhumane conditions (I've talked with one of the people who worked directly with those women while they were detained - police wouldn't even touch the HIV+ women). I suggest you go to your nearest screening of Ruins, a documentary about it. Or read an public health expert's opinion.

In France burkas are banned. Is France not a democracy anymore?

One thing is not enough to question democracy, but yes, this ban is against fundamental human rights. You are derailing the discussion though. (And yes, the current UK government does not win any honours on how democratic they are, given how they handle the NSA thing that implicates Britain too.)

The fact that Thrace's Turks are not allowed to call themselves Turks. The fact that Macedonia's Slavic minority is not recognised although everyone knows it exists. The fact that if you go to Epirus and talk about teaching Vlach at schools you will soon have spies after you. The fact that gay couples cannot marry. The fact that the Church and the state are linked. These are serious threats to democracy and they must be dealt with. Not those you mentioned in your posts: these are your subjective opinion, not proof that Greece is a junta and the government an ultra-right "regime". Imperfect democracy and junta are two different things

Yes, let's change the subject from "abuse of executive power by the government" to "nationalism". Because democracy can only have one threat at the time.
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Re: Live your democratic myth in Greece

Postby ego » 2013-11-20, 22:13

I can see you are losing your temper and you're "taking offence". I don't even understand where that conclusion about two dogmatically opponent groups came from. I said let's agree that we disagree because the alternative would be to enter an endless heated debate and try to convince each other he's wrong. It won't happen. I think we can coexist even if we disagree, no?

You are very absolute in your ideas, I'd say dogmatic. Hence your extreme speech, full of accusations. You seem to know exactly what a junta is, what a "regime" is, although at you are only 20 years old and you spent these years in Cyprus, where till recently the most interesting political debate was over the lawfulness of hunting down the αμπελοπούλια. You better talk about things you know and believe me, you don't know what junta is. People who have actually experienced a junta would laugh at your calling today's Greece a junta. When I hear so young people talking so confidently about junta all I can do is :roll: . An imperfect democracy is an imperfect democracy. Just that. Not a junta.

Also you seem to rely a lot on random evidence. A badly edited video, some worker's testimony..

Calm down, Greece is still a democracy, and I believe it will be for the the foreseeable future.

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Re: Live your democratic myth in Greece

Postby md0 » 2013-11-20, 22:29

Should I point out that you haven't refuted the point I made about the decree, or that the abuse of power (that you even recognised it happens) is actually a grave issue? In par with gay-marriage, or rather, more important than that.
Or do you honestly don't want to talk about any of those things (because at first I thought you just said that because it's customary to say it) and just deduce that I don't know what I am talking about because I'm twenty? (Because I am 20 it doesn't mean that I can't meet and discuss with people that are much older and know what happens in Greece first hand).

And do try to watch the documentary. It's still not online but they have screenings abroad.
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Re: Live your democratic myth in Greece

Postby ego » 2013-11-20, 22:36

Anyway, I think we should both move to Japan :wink:

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Re: Live your democratic myth in Greece

Postby md0 » 2013-11-20, 22:40

:roll: I take that as "Yes, I don't want to talk about the topic of the threat". Fair enough. You could just write that though, instead of derailing the discussion yet again.
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Re: Live your democratic myth in Greece

Postby ego » 2013-11-20, 22:51

meidei wrote::roll: I take that as "Yes, I don't want to talk about the topic of the threat". Fair enough. You could just write that though, instead of derailing the discussion yet again.


I'm not derailing the conversation; I think it was a good debate and thank you for that. I just wanted to lighten it a bit and close the conversation without any hard feelings. You certainly make good points. I guess we are both right in some things and wrong in others. No point in trying to convince each other he's wrong. Since the damn crisis started I've had so many debates with so many people, I've never convinced anyone and never anyone convinced me. In the meanwhile I've lost some friends because of these heated arguments :( So, if you don't mind, I'll close it here.

Goodnight, and thanks again

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md0
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Re: Live your democratic myth in Greece

Postby md0 » 2013-11-20, 22:57

I appreciate your honesty in this last post, which is far more courteous than the Japan comment. Thank you.
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