''You can always sell the Acropolis''

Article published on March 1, 2011
Article published on March 1, 2011
by Tatyana Kirchhoff According to Inman & Smith (2010) as cited in the Guardian, Greece will only avoid bankruptcy if it sells some islands. Furthermore, Acropolis and Parthenon seem to be also appealing and "they could also fall under the hammer". While I was reading the paper I really didn't know what to feel at first.
Was it anger or sadness or embarasment or irony of how people are so "technocrats" or "uneducated" or "cynical" or "practical" nowadays?

I really have no words to explain my emotions. It is just so hard to read things like that about your country and it’s really sadder when you know that these measurements may not be just fictional or extreme, but the simple reality that will come sooner or later. I don’t really know how to calm down my nerves while reading this article.

I believe that everyone who would read that foreigners will recommend to sell your islands and the most ancient European monuments (Acropolis and Parthenon) as a solution in order to avoid bankrupt, will become mad. It may become even madder when the real truth is that every other European country knew that Greece wouldn’t be able to respond to all these loans.

However, instead of doing something at the beginning, now they introduce themselves as the Messiah of Europe, having these great ideas.

Of course my intention is not to blame any German for the current financial environment in Greece, though my point is that according to Losantos (2008) and later Ravnaa (2010), some other countries are experiencing some serious economic problems, as well. (PIGS= P, for Portugal, I, for Ireland and S, for Spain). It’s not only Greece. Plus, do not ever forget that globally the crisis was really strong and according to BBC (2011), the strongest of the last decades.

I am not an economist. I have no idea how and why this downturn happened and I really do not want to participate in this technocratic world. I do know though, that economy has become volatile all over the world and I cannot blame a small country, like Greece, for the whole disaster.

I am pretty sure that other big countries have played a vital role as well (and by that I do not mean under any circumstance that it is a mature process to blame the others for your own faults) and that is why I feel so much anger for Greek politicians who just let foreigners to recommend solutions such as the above-mentioned.

It is just so hard to explain to any German what Acropolis and Parthenon mean, because simply there is no other European country, except Greece, which has so much history behind it. As I said I don’t know economy. But I know history. And it’s just so hard to even starting explain Greek history. Considering that Acropolis and Parthenon have been built in the 5th century BC long before any other European culture, and considering that these monuments have survived through all that centuries and wars it is simple uneducated to ask for a country like Greece to sell these monuments. I may live in a world of my own, when I still believe in principles and history and ethics.

Although, I certainly know that money makes the world go round. And Greece has completely failed in managing its own financial issues. I can ensure you that every single Greek citizen feels embarrassed for these inexcusable, irresponsible and retired politicians that we had all these years. And definitely we cannot be mad at journalists who write about selling the most ancient monument in Europe (Acropolis and Parthenon), simple because they have no idea what does that mean to us..

Notes:

trailblazer (2011-02-27): BBC (2011). News Global Economy.

Inman, P. & Smith, H. (2010). "Greek should sell islands to keep bankruptcy at bay", Guardian Press.

Losantos,F. (:2008). "Financial pigs"

Ravnaa, N. (2010). "Banket gjennom giganthjelpen" (in Norwegian). NA24. http://www.na24.no/article2908474.ece.

Tatyana Kirchhoff is an actress and a Master's Student in Psychology at Kingston University.