The Parthenon Sculptures and the Acropolis museum

Parthenon is a global monument and a symbol of western civilization. Parthenon stands in the middle of Athens, the city that took its name from the goodness protector of culture and education for 24 centuries. It will always be there, incised in the minds and the hearts of every human being on this earth, and this is what the trustees and the directors of the British Museum fail to recognize. It doesn’t matter what excuses they use for keeping the Parthenon Sculptures away from their natural place. For the people who visit the British museum, the exhibits will always be a result of receiving stolen goods, a result of receiving stolen monuments of the human civilization and that’s it.

acropolis01_400I’m proud to be born in the city that has this monument, but I never thought that I own it; I always felt that this monument belongs to everybody. This is why I often write and I strongly believe that a visit to the Acropolis should be free of charge. Everybody should be free to visit this monument and share the pride of being a member of this superior creature called human, be proud of being part of the history and be proud of having this history behind us. You see, I always believed that Acropolis represents all of us, and in the shapes of the marbled men and women are the foundations of our society, our culture, and our achievements.

Parthenon and the whole Acropolis were barbarically victimized during those 24 centuries, because it was often seen as a threat. It was always a symbol of faith, belief, and a way of life that threatened even the mighty Ottoman Empire. Even Christians didn’t dare to build a small church in the perimeters of the Parthenon, but in the end even they respected its quiet force and power. The Nazis, who in the 20th century didn’t respect human life, were forced to respect it and bow in front this magnificent monument.

It took an Englishman to do the worst barbarism of all. Lord Elgin’s crime was not only that he stole part of the Parthenon and destroyed parts of it, but he was fully aware of his act and the meaning of it. Lord Elgin proved that there is always a very dark side to human nature. Most people manage to handle it, but I blame human nature because I cannot believe that he did this act in order to preserve history, as often has been the excuse for it.

acropolis02If Lord Elgin wanted to preserve history, he could have started in England by protecting Stonehenge, a monument of 44 centuries that has often been vandalized by pagan followers, druids and their rivals. He could have put some of these rocks in his garden, like he did with some of the most beautiful amphora and examples of Greek art. If he wanted something more challenging, he could have gone after the Excalibur; he didn’t have to steal something that didn’t belong to his ancestors. I’m sorry to say, but the only motivation I can see behind his act is envy. Lord Elgin lived during a period when western civilization was searching for it roots, and it had turned to the Greek civilization, which had made royal palaces in Corinthian style, decorated with columns and Greek statuses. So he did what every thief does, he stole what he couldn’t have or create.

Now, whatever Lord Elgin’s family and his heirs want to believe, and whatever the British Museum says, Lord Elgin was judged and sentenced to be remembered as a barbarian in history. Somebody who stole something from all of us, and through his act he destroyed a big part of the rest. But what can you say about the trustees and directors of the British Museum today? They face an international outcry and still they stubbornly insist of being part of a crime, in legal terms being the other part of receiving stolen goods and having paid for it.

acropolis03The Parthenon Sculptures must return to their home, not only because they were stolen, but because it will be an act of apology for a barbaric act, and the British nation has proved many times that is not a barbaric nation. Lord Byron died in Greece fighting barbarians and protecting the same things Lord Elgin destroyed. T.S. Eliot wrote hymns and Shakespeare was inspired by the same culture. The British museum trustees and directors have no right to ignore their own culture by continuing this crime. The saddest part of all is that the British Museum itself continued the barbarisms over the Parthenon Sculptures. First they destroyed the top layer that was there to protect them, thinking that they were cleaning them by making them …more white. And later, only a few years ago, they used the exhibition hall that hosts the Parthenon Sculptures to organize big parties, where people were smoking cigars, drinking champagne and eating snacks! The trustees and directors not only have to apologize to Acropolis by returning the Parthenon Sculptures, but they have to apologize to the whole world for the stupidity and barbarism of some of their members.

The Acropolis Museum, Melina Mercury’s dream, is open and there is a space there, waiting for the return of the Parthenon Sculptures. Over the next days, weeks, months and years, millions of people will be reminded that there is something missing in the museum. Something that was stolen and it doesn’t matter what excuses the trustees and the directors of the British Museum will use. In the minds and hearts of people, the thing missing was stolen by a Brit, and it is now being exhibited brassily in the British Museum!

By Thanos Kalamidas

A Europe in question

An article from Ovi magazine

Only weeks before the European Elections, when European citizens elect their representatives into the common parliament, Europe celebrates Europe Day. This is a day that reminds all Europeans of the fundamental principles of the European Union, of peace and solidarity. The European principles guarantee a decent standard of living for all European citizens; they promote economic and social development. The principles also embrace environmental and regional differences. At least that is the theory, or perhaps what Schuman thought on May 9th 1950, when he deposited his declaration of a united Europe.

In May 1950, Schuman’s declaration seemed the next natural step for a Europe that was in ruins after an exhausting world war. The war had turned Europe into a battlefield for over five years, and left it without a youth only two decades after WWI. Financial competition was the new world reality, and the only way to deal with this was to unite forces. The European countries had the necessary industrial power to stand between the two giants and perhaps make a third pole in this game. A pole that could guarantee democracy and freedom – after all, the continent had learned the hard way what it meant to be without both. But yet again that was all in theory and the problems started very early.

First was the French veto against UK membership, because of its name – something which by the way should apparently be the same case now with FYROM. Later the competition between Britain and France caused more problems, with additional in and outs from the third major European player, Germany. Still, the EU continued to expand, including Greece and later Spain, Portugal and the Scandinavian countries. In 2009 we have 27 member states, with more waiting in the hallway for their full membership.

The aims of the EU were also questioned. For a long time Britain wanted a relaxed financial and commercial cooperation, with independent foreign and defence policies, while France, Italy and Germany wanted a more tightly knit relationship, like in the case of the United States of America. The unity has often been tested over the years, and one of the worst moments was during the last decade, when Iraq was invaded. Later the union expansion created tension, with ten new member states being added to an EU which was not prepared for such a massive expansion so quickly. This is an obvious crisis. There are other crises, which aren’t that apparent, such as the competition between the USA and Europe, the currency wars, and most importantly the industry wars, which have caused a lot of casualties on both sides.

The European Constitution remains another thorny issue, with only the top of the iceberg showing. Behind it are a series of other issues, mainly made up by the lack of coordination between the major players; a lack of EU leadership; and members with strong agendas that often conflict with the aim of a united Europe. Of course the general economic crisis and the dramatic unemployment rise don’t help much either. And yes, individuals form part of the problem as well, and in this case I’m not talking about Europe’s clown, Silvio and his family dramas.

First there is the European official leadership, Mr. Barroso, who often confuses his loyalties between the American administration and his real bosses – the European citizens. His Commission has become a bureaucratic monster that ignores the needs of the European citizens. Secondly there is a European Parliament that adds an unbelievable amount of meaningless legislations to the lives of people who have no clue why. This is part of the reality, but having said that, I don’t mean that there is no real work going on, especially in the Parliament. But everything they do is ruined by the executive parts of the Union taking over, such as the Commission President or the Council of Prime Ministers.

The European Parliament has voted on a series of laws aimed at protecting and defending democracy and human rights, but unfortunately politics, national agendas and geopolitical interests have often put an end to these. Euro-bureaucracy has become the worst enemy of euro-unity.

And the European Elections show exactly what the European governments think about a united Europe: for most of the European governments, the election is a good chance to promote their own work and on the same time measure their popularity.

What’s next? Well, Europe is suffering from an identity crisis, and it has to rebuild – or better rediscover – the aims of the union. Perhaps the European citizens need reassurance that the principals are still there. The citizens need to know that the European values still exist to protect and defend their interests and prosperity. Instead of having a Europe full of questions, we need a United Europe inspiring confidence and security.

By Thanos Kalamidas

Flu of misinformation and hypocrisy

An article from Ovi magazine

Conspiracy theories are not my thing and I have to admit that I always laughed at most of them. After all, turning to conspiracy theories means that you’re having problems accepting logic, ignoring how crazy any theory might sound. Back in the eighties when HIV AIDS stormed into our lives, especially when the first celebrities were caught in the storm, conspiracy theories blossomed. CIA had created the virus and lost control; there was even a laboratory somewhere in the USA that had created the virus as a lethal weapon against gays. Everybody seemed to forget that even cancer has existed throughout history, but doctors only identified it the last three centuries, and started focusing on it and doing research.

Humanity has experienced a lot of illnesses throughout history, many of them lethal. Illnesses often also became the focus of superstition, for instance the plague was blamed on Satan and heretics during the medieval period, instead of the lack of hygiene in the growing cities. Recently, Robert Mugabe, Africa’s caricature Hitler, blamed British intelligence for the cholera epidemic in Zimbabwe, instead of his own inability to help the people with basic needs such as clean water and food. The common factor in these cases, and I suppose in the majority of all cases, is not any kind of conspiracy theory, but the lack of necessary action. With this I mean distributing the right kind of information to deal with the problem – which points directly at the states and this is not … a conspiracy theory!

There is no conspiracy theory behind the swine flu and scientists have, often cynically, used their logic to explain in detail how the flu started and how it expands. They have exhibited studies and statistics that are not new – there is nothing new about swine flu – and they have explained defences and all that with the help of the World Health Organization, WHO. Doctors have been warned and informed on local levels, and most of them are prepared to deal with it. But despite all the information, people have stopped eating pork, and the number of flu victims is increasing internationally, adding one dead in USA and twelve in Mexico.

When I wrote that people have stopped buying pork meat, I was not joking. Actually the US Government, joined by Russia, China and another fifteen countries, have imposed restrictions on pork products imports from Mexico – I suppose you never know what a well made pork chop might give you. The best of all was when American Vice President Joe Biden said in a televised interview that he would not let his family fly by plane or be in an enclosed public place, like a cinema, while this thing is still going on. Biden’s interview was broadcast in the news all around the world. I saw them in Finland, and especially these comments gave the message that if the American vice president prefers to keep his family indoors to protect them, I better not move from my room!

The swine flu, according to most scientists, is not lethal, and I trust they know what they are talking about. Its lethality depends on the prevention and treatment of suspected patients, as well as the patient’s immune system. But apart from babies and very young people, or if somebody has serious problems with their immune system, swine flu is not the only enemy. So here we have, once again, misinformation and mishandled situations, from the very people that are obliged to protect us from exactly these situations, leading us to widespread panic!

Because how is anybody supposed to react to Biden’s comments and the American administration’s restrictions on import of pork products from Mexico, if not with panic?

The Mexican government correctly demands explanations from the governments of the states that put on these restrictions. The Mexicans are demanding explanations based on a scientific basis, highlighting the fact that consumers are not likely to check the origin of the pork steak or pork sausage they buy from the supermarket – they will just quit buying any pork product! Amazing! The EU on the other hand, tries to be clever by using marketing tricks and changing the name of the flu from swine flu to …a novel flu virus! Wow, that will definitely solve all the problems! Personally I have to admit that I have never seen a sausage or a pork steak sneeze at me, and if I ever see that I will definitely start believing that aliens have taken over the main governments and that together with Hoover they are all responsible for J.F. Kennedy’s assassination!

What the World Health Organization has failed to protect us from is the flu of misinformation and hypocrisy!

A German lullaby

An article from Ovi magazine by Thanos Kalamidas

And it did happen again and this time in Germany, with more victims – fifteen, the news say, including the boy that held the gun. The question remains, who put this gun in his hand and who triggered it! The answer is unknown and we are all waiting for the specialists and profilers to tell us what is going on; in the meantime nobody has given any answer to what happened in Finland a few months ago and in the States before that. The only fact is that young people are armed and are ready to shoot-to-kill in the places that should represent the dreams and the hopes of everybody, and they are doing that against the people who share their dreams and hopes.

A few months ago I wrote an article about what happened in Finland and hours after the hit in Germany, with the news bombing us with more information all the time, the only thing I can sense is that the main reasoning remains the same: there is a generation growing-up lacking an identity. Please don’t think that I make the mistake to compare generations, this generation is just different because they live in a different reality from my generation, for example – and again I’m saying that without judging – it is just different without that meaning that it is better or worst.

Germany goes through a huge crisis, perhaps the worst since the period between the two world wars. Unemployment has reached the same levels with the period Hitler was storming German politics with …solutions and the gap between the rich and poor is like a canyon nowadays. Something we actually often miss, the collapse of the Wall didn’t mean the end of problems, actually it was just the beginning and covering it under the happiness of unification didn’t mean that the problems disappeared, they just built up. The new Germany, the Germany of the 21st century, is facing a serious identity crisis balancing between the divided Germany of the Cold War, the Germany of WWII, the Germany of the industrial miracle of the ’60s and ’70s and the Germany of the two speeds at the end of the 20th century. In the middle is a new generation that tries to understand what is bad and what is good.

Using the words bad and good I’m not referring to anything metaphysical, but the confusing reality of the end of the 20th century for this generation. Think of it, from one day to the other the Wall collapses, actually the way it happened was painless and harmless yet a shock for all of us who had created endless myths about the mighty Soviet Bear; and the West Germans faced their own brothers but not exactly brothers to be the poor relatives nobody wants home for the party. At the same time, the stories and the propaganda of the evil Soviet regime becomes gigantic, turning the people to the other side, exactly the opposite. Neo-Nazi parties and groups are illegal in Germany but that doesn’t stop them increasing in numbers and members and the hate incidents become more dramatic every day. Oddly, the evil and bad guys compared to the other evil and bad guys don’t look so bad anymore and a young generation that sees dreams and hopes disappear in a world where only the few can make money – money nowadays is the only way to succeed – stand unable to react, numb and confused.

Finally, population movements and immigration became the nightmare, this generation feels like it is descended and neglected by a world that just doesn’t have time for them. And then you get a boy confused and most likely influenced from some fanatics with a gun. How did he find the gun? This is something for the police to find out and for the state to take the necessary measures and I said the same when the same happened in Finland without ignoring the fact that if somebody wants to find a gun they will find it legally or illegally. The point is that we must find the way to give to these kids their missing identity and the responsibility is collective. We all have our share. The problem is the same like it was a few years ago with the hooliganism it has just evolved and the need for a solution and action has become more urgent.

When you read on the news that fifteen people died, when you read analysis and statistics, when you deal with profiles and police investigation remember that the gunman was a seventeen year-old boy! Remember that he was an ordinary boy with good reports from the school and that he loved tennis. Remember that this boy was just like any seventeen year-old boy and instead of trying to blame him try to understand what led him and most importantly who armed his hand. Don’t try to analyze what was his relationship with his mother because he killed eight girls it was pour confidence and it has nothing to do with all the televised circumstantial psychologists, it was a seventeen year-old boy full of anger of a society that was deaf to his agony and try to think who triggered this frustration and transformed it onto murder.

Tibet, hell on Earth!

The Dalai Lama has launched a fierce attack on Chinese rule in his Tibetan homeland, describing its people’s lives as “hell on Earth”. Five decades of Chinese rule had caused “untold suffering”, Tibet’s exiled spiritual leader said, accusing Beijing of creating a climate of fear. He also repeated his demand for Tibet’s “legitimate and meaningful autonomy”.

The same time a Chinese high official announced that China will never be a …democracy as the westerns understand it! So what type of democracy they are planning? My name is dictatorship but I call myself democracy?

Pillorying dignity

An article from Ovi magazine by Thanos Kalamidas

It started late last week from a popular UK tabloid and gradually took over all the tabloids all around the world. By Sunday it is somewhere in all the media agencies all around the world, the issue a thirteen year-old boy and a fifteen year- old girl that became a father and mother. A boy who still spends most of his time playing computer games, football and going to school and a girl still playing with dolls and in the back garden with her friends were sexually active; so active so the girl was taking the pill and because she forgot to take it a few days she became pregnant.

But let’s get to the other elements one by one before we move to the new parents. Newspapers and especially tabloids live and thrive with stories like that and that’s the reason they literally hunt stories like that ignoring everything that has to do with human dignity, even the basic rules. So we all know – and by all I mean the whole world – the name of the boy and the girl, we all know their address and thanks to the tabloids we all had a look in their bedroom’s keyhole since all the tabloids left a lot of comments about their active sex life. I suppose a few perverts had a party with all the details that paraded in the pages of the tabloids.

Making Andy Warhol true these tabloids promise ten minutes fame to everybody pillorying the two kids because with all the photos and all the interviews with questions like “how you going to finance your new life” and answers like “what does ‘finance’ means” that’s exactly what they are doing ignoring that the boy is in the first grade and is not a surprise if he doesn’t know the meaning of the words. The media have acted like vultures over these young bodies and I’m sorry to say this is inexcusable and embarrassing but it seems like that everybody is ignoring it.

You see the tabloids after gave the chance to everybody to look into the keyhole they gave the opportunity for another blame game and a witch-hunt. So the conservative party – no I’m sorry, the most hypocrite part of the society doesn’t matter ideology – blamed the labour party and the socialists for the loss of morals. Every time I hear or read something like that I really freak out because usually it comes from people who haven’t got any sense of morals or dignity but they flag them to serve their opportunist agendas and cover their unbelievable scandals. I suppose their next suggestion is to involve the civil servants and take the baby away from the parents because they are too young completing a series of mistakes with a huge mistake.

The same people and many more will say that things like that didn’t happen in the past. This is the most amazing lie and unfortunately a lie most believe and repeat often. Things like that happened all throw the human history and they will happen in the future as well. Do you know what the difference is? The cover up and the acceptance of the fact since the accident were accompanied with a fast wedding something people today don’t think necessary. Or was it better when my thirteen-year old grandmother had her first child from a man she married just a year before with a man who was twenty years her senior? Or was my grandmother an exception? And my grandmother was lucky because she got married, how many others due to social differences were left alone with their newborn in a society that didn’t want the responsibility sending hundreds of kids in orphanages all around the world?

You don’t have to go far, just read the classics from the 19th and the 18th century to see all the examples, actually some of those classics are must to read for teenagers today. This is a very serious issue and it has nothing, absolutely nothing to do with morals but with the fact that two very young kids gambled their future due to lack of knowledge of the outcome of their acts. Otherwise that they were sexually active is not a crime! And unfortunately this is were it comes the family and the state especially the school. Let’s start from the bottom. Do you think that the teachers care or even if they care can they do something?

Unfortunately the raw answer is no, they cannot do something because most of them are hovered from exactly the same problems the parents have, insecure future, loans, credit cards and the fear of unemployment. Most of them in their hunt of survival have no time to take care of their own kids not the others’ kids. Their fears and insecurities coming with them in the classrooms living them dry to any kind of reaction. The family? Most of the time the family is absent, both parents work hard if they are lucky to cope with the necessary expenses, sometimes doing jobs they hate, humiliating and underpaid. The only time they have to deal with their kids is something like two three hours maximum a day.

I’ve read somewhere that the two families should be blamed for leaving their kids to sleep in the same room? Really? So if your twelve year-old son asks you to bring his friend to overnight the first thing you will think is that they are going to have an orgy in his room and not that they are going to pretend that they are reading and spend all the time in front the play station! If you think that they are going to have an orgy then there is something wrong with you. From the other side do you think if they want to do something you are going to stop them? You must have illusions and examples there are thousands all around us. The key for a good relationship with the kids is trust and information.

Information is the part where the state has failed, not that there are not the right books in the schools and there are not the right hours and teachers to teach the kids, what is missing is the right attitude. Our world has changed this is fact and the kids grow faster nowadays this is another fact and it is our obligation to arm the kids with this new future not preaching morals but explaining what nobody ever explained to my grandmother and obviously to those two kids, that there is a future that includes babies but first they have to make sure that they are armed to survive with dignity in this world. For this to happen we must have teacher who will not worry for their well-being but they will worry for these kids’ well-being. I’m emphasizing the role of the teachers because again unfortunately this is the thing that has changed radically nowadays; kids live more in the school yard than with their parents.

Finally the kids themselves. Personally I’m glad they kept the baby and didn’t escape to any easy solution and I really hope that this will not become the reason or the excuse to stop their studies but on the contrary and with the help of the families and the state will motivate them to study harder for a better future for them and their kid. And if we need desperately to blame somebody it would be a good start to begin with the media that like cannibals pilloried their dignity!

The Article Nobody Wants To Read

An article from Ovi magazine by Alexandra Pereira

I know that I can be crucified for this article. But I don’t really care. It is my opinion, I have been thinking like that (and about that) for a long time. I think we should all consider it seriously and try to develop serious efforts in this sense. This is really about our balance as societies and individuals, and the prevalence of constructive and positive bonds over deception and global destruction.

We human beings know instinctively and through our life experiences that there are human beings among us who have moral holes, a moral vacuum, lack of empathy, extreme and destructive hate inside them, very cunning manipulative skills – all these characteristics harm both other individuals and the society, mining its long-term goals, destroying solidarity, spreading unseen or not witnessed crime and persecution, destroying bonds, potentials, dreams and lives. We cannot live deluded in wonderland saying to ourselves that such humans don’t exist. On the other hand, once we admit that such humans do exist, our knowledge brings responsibility with it: we have to recognize how harmful are the consequences of their actions and take serious measures to prevent those from happening.

Anybody who studied a bit of psychology or the functioning of the human mind knows that we can differentiate clearly several types of human personalities, and while many are constructive or innocuous, a few of them are extremely toxic, destructive by nature, cruel, unchangeable, extremely manipulative and harming to others. We know this is true, and the harm and pain that these personalities provoke in others, the destruction they leave behind them as well as their impunity, cannot be collectively ignored. It would be extremely irresponsible to do so.

Most people commit mistakes, are occasionally selfish, have flaws, have feelings, have guilt, have reparation needs, have dreams, have doubts, have occasional conflicts (and not extremely unsurpassable ones, as they also have a sense of negotiation, flexibility and empathy), mostly try to build positive relationships and bonds, they can lie occasionally about minor things with no greatly harming consequences, above all they love truth and its priceless outcomes for their lives, they have empathy, have feelings, have a sense of the right and wrong, have affective resonance and sensibility, have problems and dilemmas, suffer, have sense of humor, have creativity, have a sense of fidelity, a sense of community and a sense of responsibility, and a need to trust and bond in spite of anything.

We do know that the level of negative impact of the most harming personalities is profoundly and qualitatively different: they don’t feel guilt (but are experts in taking advantage of guilty feelings of others), they don’t have a sense of right and wrong (which allows any behaviour to be “legitimate”), they don’t feel or hardly feel anything (but can mimic human emotions masterfully), don’t have empathy and can’t feel true sadness, are unscrupulous, they hurt compulsively, emotionally blood-suck others, and have a deep love for lies and deception, a fatal attraction to power, they attack other humans’ self-esteem, self-confidence and reality perception in several ways, are sadistic, manipulate and cheat, and are driven by destruction impulses and death desires. They represent the dark side of humanity, where we don’t want to look in. And we know all those things about them also scientifically – it is not hard to understand, as it is part of everyone’s common experience.

Most people are in fact qualitatively different from psychopaths, sociopaths and narcissists – and that is what allows the latter to so drastically harm, manipulate and influence others, because they know it too (and are masters of using it for their own purposes, which logics often escapes most humans). We know scientifically that common people have relatively few defences against this. This is proven and felt by many. And this is something we can’t ignore once we know it. It is extremely urgent that we develop clear diagnosis methods for such personalities.

We have personality tests but we know that such individuals usually lie/deceive during both interviews and tests. We have polygraphs (which are expensive, not easily accessible instruments and not 100% reliable) based on merely physiological signs, but we know that especially these harming individuals can cheat the polygraphs. We know that we just have to try a little bit harder, and such instruments can be available… if we want to! The answer will probably come from both genetics and neurosciences’ research. We have detected the structures in our brain responsible for empathy and morality that took us a little bit closer. We also know the typical brain patterns of common people when they are depressed, and we know that the most harmful personalities can’t get depressed (although they can mimic cry at times, specially to manipulate others into doing, feeling or thinking something “useful” for them).

We know that we will be able to find at least specific brain functioning patterns (areas of brain activation, electrical patterns) in given situations, specific of these individuals, and the genetic characteristics of these personalities (genetic proof would probably be found faster and more unmistakably). We’re just this close, and we just need a push! Above all, we need will! Once we can do it, it will have profound effects on the way we see ourselves and the ones surrounding us. Once we can do it, there’s no return – thank God – to the illusory innocence of perverse masks and deceiving realities, but there will be abundant space and protection for the kind at heart, and for goodness and solidarity and constructive goals to grow both socially and inside our homes.

The key seems to be not in “perfecting” human races’ phenotype through genetics, like the Nazis wanted to, but in identifying the genotype of the most harmful human beings. We have to have objective ways of identifying the most harming and deceiving personalities. It is a matter of protecting citizens, but also a matter of survival of our societies at large. These individuals can commit personal crimes, social crimes and crimes against humanity. More than that: it would lead to deep social changes. That is why it demands political courage and determination, not only research, to do this. We wouldn’t have paradise on earth, but we would surely have more pleasant and safe societies. States would save billions in expenses. Nonetheless, some State members wouldn’t feel safe, as they could be subjected to such instruments too. This can be one of the obstacles to the development of these instruments.

Let’s be clear. I am not talking here about many teenager delinquents who act out. I’m not even referring to people who live in extremely poor social conditions and are forced to steal food or do something which is not completely legal because otherwise they won’t survive. I am not talking about them simply because many of these people don’t have such personalities. I am talking about deeply democratic and truthful instruments. These instruments do not serve law and political control; they serve humans and the goals and dreams of our collective societies (making them more liveable) and our individuals.

Because I am talking about the most harming, dangerous and deceiving personalities among us – the ones justice cannot prove or does not find enough evidence of their crimes, and personality tests cannot clarify while interviews don’t work because of manipulation and incredible acting skills by these individuals. Because they are qualitatively different and unchangeable, I truly believe there is a genetic basis for these personalities. Brain patterns and functioning (especially when asked certain questions) would prove the activity of such genetic traits, its characteristics and answers to the surrounding environment. Human justice is based on facts. Facts always demand a more or less high level of concreteness or scientific certainty. There’s no way around it.

Of course we could always turn to God’s mercy and justice. But this not only isn’t satisfactory, as it allows fellow humans to keep suffering at the hands of other humans. Giving a recent example: I’m sure that many people asked God to have mercy (and apply divine justice) of all the Nazis, including Mengele. Human justice was not applied. The results we are starting to uncover reveal that Mengele, for example, continued to harm other human beings at least 20-35 years after the Holocaust – this included medical and genetic crimes against others, with consequences at all human levels, at least for the inhabitants of an entire city, the city of Cândido Godoi, in Brazil. And certainly his actions included more details we don’t even know about yet.

Mengele was one of these personalities, as was Hitler, but we can find them in everyday bastards who harm and lie compulsively, serial killers, domestic abusers, white-collar criminals, paedophiles, rapists, extremely manipulative personalities, harmful narcissists and many people who… did not commit their crimes yet. We should think about it and demand something – something fair which we can achieve scientifically, which can avoid a great slice of human suffering, spiritual hindering and the jeopardizing of social well-being at all levels. If we can identify such individuals, our justice can be much more effective, our prevention capabilities can be much more efficient, first of all.

The priority should be identifying the ones who seem healthy but are extremely poisonous. Many traditionally considered “mentally hill” people hardly represent any serious danger for others or the society – we keep them away because we don’t want to see them. But the most harmful personalities are often among us and apparently “over-adapted”, while surreptitiously or progressively provoking depression, anger, anxiety, pain, devastation, grief and desperation in others. And only after identifying them should we start thinking if science can bring empathy to individuals who don’t have empathy and remorse to someone who has no remorse. I have no doubts that this is much more pressing than finding a cure for schizophrenia.

Mass murder in Australia

From Ovi magazine

The pictures of dead nature, humans and life from Australia that are circulating around the world this moment are horrifying and there are no words to describe the catastrophe on so many levels. Actually, the only thing that made sense was the Victoria State Prime Minister’s tears on the television screens that also went around the world.

The fires continue this very moment I’m writing this and the number of dead increases, the size of the lost forest and the animal life and habitat and the remaining question is flee or fight. Flee from what? Flee from your own land, the place of your birth and breath? How can you? And then again fight what? It’s not the fire only, it’s not the wind only, it is these beasts in the shape of human, the arsonists who started this crime and now they are nothing less than mass murderers. And all that for what? For a few more silver coins because that is what the earth is worth to them, just a few more silver coins.

It is something like fifteen years ago I found myself inside a burned forest and it was over six months since the incident had happened; a few of you might remember the big fires in central Greece in the mid-eighties. It just happened for me to go through the area that had been burned and I just had to stop the car, I couldn’t continue and it was like a tombstone had fallen over me, the picture was simply devastating. I know you might say that they are trees but for me that moment there were dead souls all around and the thought that among them there were human souls it was just unbearable.

australia_400Because of what I saw and the way this picture has been haunting me through the years I’ve been watching the progress happening in the area and the results of the investigation. The police a few months after the incident announced that it was arson for sure; they had found proof but not proof to deal to anybody specifically so the case followed other similar taking a code name, a number and be stored in one of the file cases they have. However one thing that at least I have learned reading mystery stories is that there is no crime without motive and in any case you should search first for the motive and that would lead you to the guilty.

A few years after the fires the local authorities and some organizations patiently tried to do something about the lost forest mainly planting young trees and taking care of them hoping or perhaps dreaming that they will help the rebirth of the forest and it is somehow true, the forest reborn it was just …less than a tenth of its original size! What happened to the rest? Where trees were growing, were animals enjoyed, hunt and lived having their offspring today there are rich villas and luxurious cottages, asphalt roads and cabriolets, there are even hotels and tourists’ shops you see the sea is not that far!

I presume you can see the motive, you can see the result of the crime and most likely the guilty has a name. Everything happened because of the greed of the few which naturally leads to another series of questions, what the state is doing and furthermore what is worth a human life? Coming to the fires in Greece I’m very disappointed even to dare try answer, the state has long proved inability and please think how much this costs me to admit when it comes to my own country and I really hope the tears of the Victoria State Premier John Brumby were not for the show and he will do the necessary to catch and exemplary punish the guilty but regarding the cost of life I have no idea how they calculate it and how these monsters can sleep at night.

But is not just the human life, here there is something far more important if you could ever compare, there is the collective well being, is the life of all of us because every single inch of lost forest replaced by concrete costs far more than just money, it costs to the future, to our kids to all our lives. Why do they think environmental issues have taken so huge dimensions to become even a theme of talk for the American presidential election, to become a reason for international worry and part of the problem that reaches even the economic growth of nations? Every inch of burned forest in the far away Australia, every lost each of rainforest in the far away south Africa is another piece missing of our survival, the well being of our families and our kinds and one step closer to the nightmarish pictures we see in these cult fiction films of sixties and seventies.

The fires in Australia continue and I’m really afraid that the number of the dead, human and nature will continue equally increase and the question flee or fight sounds more dramatic every second for the people there. The feeling that there is the possibility that human beings or at least some called human beings are behind those fires is at least discussing and what the Victoria State Premier John Brumby said is just truth, these people must be arrested soon and accused for mass murder!

Filling the gap

An article from the Ovi magazine

And his name is …Joe Biden and it was like hell for all of us who don’t live in the States, not very familiar with the name and the background to find out who Biden, Mr. Joe Biden is. The US Democratic Presidential hopeful Barack Obama announced his pick for a vice-president in the face of a 65-year-old veteran senator and expert on foreign policy making at least me …smile!

First of all, it looks like there is a new tradition in American presidential election; you pick your running mate after checking his medical file. I mean George W. Bush’s running mate Dick Cheney was touring with Bush and a group of doctors. You will probably point that nowadays 65 is not old and in the case of Obama-Biden we have experience joining forces with young passion. I totally agree with you and I really hope it is true.

But then why do I worry if experience can mean conservatism and youth passion …compromise? And please don’t argue that I’m saying all that because I was wishing Hillary for the place because I think that near the end Hillary made so many often unbelievable mistakes that it would worry me if Barack even thought the chance.

Then I read the man’s bio at least the one that was in the media and I noticed that it was extremely emphasized his experience in foreign affairs, after all, the man chairs the Foreign Relations Committee and well done and I’m really happy for him actually and I have often pointed it, the biggest problems the new US administration will have to deal with from the very beginning will have to do with foreign policy and it doesn’t matter who is going to win, Democrat or Republican; and an experience in foreign affairs vice president is good, really good, just too good to be true. Because Joe Biden is part of the status quo Barack wants to clean, so much part of it so in the beginning just like Hillary he fully supported both the invasion in Iraq and the occupation …sorry, I mean the help for security reasons.

I don’t know why but this expert on foreign affairs somehow comes weird to me, I mean George W. Bush or Dick Cheney aren’t exactly the masters of foreign policy. George W. Bush when he was still a candidate he thought that Pakistan is neighbouring Colombia and that Coventry is a city in USA. Dick Cheney with all his dividing Europe gave lessons of diplomacy, the two of them wrote the book all the mistakes a state can do to screw diplomacy and make enemies between allies. You would never from the very beginning call them experts of foreign policy.

And then there was another thing on the media that stroke me, the son of a car salesman expected to appeal to the blue collar workers. So Obama is admitting two things which oddly are the same things that McCain keeps accusing him, inexperience in foreign policy and being a white collar! I’m not going to add that he’s white because that will be the total cynicism.

Of course, it is too early to judge how this thing will work and of course it is unfair to say anything about Sen. Joe Biden before we hear him and we will have the chance pretty soon but again I have to remember an open letter a lot of US personalities signed and published a couple of weeks ago reminding Barack Obama that he should not change his fight for change in the name of the presidential seat. In that letter all these people tried to remind him that USA is in a deadlock in many, perhaps too many ways and only change can bring hope, something that is missing lately from the average US houses. Hope without guns but with dignity in their every day life, hope without cooperative financial scandals and greedy lobbies. Hope that will bring back faith to the system and not more homeless and unemployed in the streets.

I hope Mr. Joe Biden is aware of all that and not enter the campaign to fill the missing gap and most of all I hope that Barack Obama remembers his own words. Last and not least I’m waiting to see Hillary’s reaction in the Democrats convention that starts soon. From the beginning of her end I had the feeling that the former first lady hadn’t finished yet!

Musharraf’s end game

An article from the Ovi magazine

The first one has gone and it was about time. Pakistan’s dictator Pervez Musharraf resigned under the pressure of facing charges. Obviously he proved to have a bit of brain and just like Pinochet a few years ago he chose to leave power graciously with all the necessary compromises rather than in handcuffs.

I’m sure there was a drama in the White House when they found out and an even bigger one in CIA headquarters, but this is it, life is hard for the …allies!!! But was Musharraf an ally or just an opportunist that based his survival into the hands of Washington? I think the Pakistan desk in Washington has a lot to answer to both the president of USA and the conspiracy bosses in Langley, most likely they overestimated his power and they also underestimated his will to survive, perhaps his desperate will to survive.

Pakistan was never the perfect ally for the USA and in general the western world, and that has long and old roots. The truth is that the majority of the people are conservative religious Muslims to the limits of the Taleban, after all that was exactly what motivated them half a century ago to force split with India and nearly have a war between them. That’s exactly what separates them from the Indians despite their common battles they gave against the colonials. And the Pakistani were always suspicious towards even their own leaders when they were western educated and trained. Even towards Bhutto they were suspicious; don’t look now that Bhutto became a martyr in the fight against Musharraf’s dictatorship.

The Americans were too keen to find an ally in South East Asia, India despite the fact that it is the real super power in the area was not a trustworthy ally, too confident, too independent and often with one eye on Russia. Pakistan was the only alternative, a local power bordering with Iran and Afghanistan, not far from China, a perfect airplane carrier and the same time the perfect field for all the spy masters. And then along came Musharraf and his military coup.

No strong foundations and in need of support, strong support and he found it in the west, especially in George W. Bush, after all, their time in power started nearly at the same time. After 9-11 George W. Bush needed a good ally in the area and Musharraf looked perfect, so good that he was even invited on the ranch, called our best friend forgetting that the man had no real differences with Saddam.

When the Americans and, to an extent, the Europeans found out that the saying too good to be real worked with Musharraf it was too late. Musharraf had no real control in Pakistan, not that the people have, they are the victims but Musharraf had control only to his surroundings. The Pakistani security forces, strong elements of the state in Pakistan are shared, some of them even support the Taleban after all how can Bin Laden survive for so long if he didn’t have Pakistani help and the Americans due to their best friend Pervez might not like to admit it but the strongest cells of Bin Laden’s network work and settle in Pakistan. Most of them trained and armed from the Pakistani security forces in the same way Bin Laden himself was trained and armed by CIA.

The future of Pakistan now is a mystery, there are too many forces, a lot of them extreme that fight for power there and even Iran’s clerics dictators would like to have a bit of the country with the nuclear bombs and I have no doubts that this very moment they are having big meetings studying their next moves. But then again Musharraf was part of the problem and his presence as the head of the state made things much worse, at least now most of them will have to take off the masks and present their real faces.

Another side effect from the war in Iraq, the Americans moved all their interest to the invasion and occupation there – whatever is the name they might use now – and left the real problem in Afghanistan in the hands of a small NATO army and their hopes in Musharraf! And of course the Taleban are returning strong and with the support of the people this time! So the Americans are the next who definitely lost now with the fall of Musharraf and all their allies involved with the invasion in Iraq or not. If the Americans remember their European allies, the old Europe had often warned that we are losing focus; the war on terror is in the mountains of Afghanistan and not on the oil platforms of Iraq!!!

The only one who won in the end is again Musharraf himself because the last years the only thing in his agenda is how to avoid the court and the jail, how to come out of it gracefully and to my opinion he managed well. The reason I would like to see him in court is not revenge but justice. Because the next Musharraf must know that the will of the people and justice work in Pakistan and one way or another in the end they will have to deal with both of them. But he seems to escape at the moment and the only thing I can hope to see is for others to follow his example, like Zimbabwe’s Mugabe! As far Musharraf, his bosses might offer him a job in USA, you never know for as long he worked in Pakistan he served them well!