Greece Slides Into The "Fourth World" - The Full Photo Album

Tyler Durden's picture

With Greek government bonds at multi-year highs (up 300% in the last year), the Athens Stock Index still up 100% in the last year, and leaders all over the Euro-zone proclaiming the crisis is over (and that Greece has "made big strides"); we thought it perhaps useful to look at the reality behind the propagandized talk and manipulation. The sad truth is Greece is rapidly dissolving into a 'fourth world' nation with unemployment rates (broad and youth) at unprecedented levels, poverty widespread, and homelessness rife. Perhaps, as Germany today stated that there will be no more debt reduction for Greece, it is 'math' in the first image that the TROIKA and the Greek representatives should pay special attention to...


40-year-old Yiorgos, who became homeless in 2010 after his grocery shop went out of business, sleeps outdoors in central Athens February 3, 2013.


42-year-old Alexandros, from Serres in northern Greece, sits in the abandoned car he lives in, at the port of Piareus near Athens April 10, 2013. Alexandros owned a plant shop in Athens until 2010, when it was forced to close, he became homeless soon after.


Homeless people sleep outdoors in central Athens April 14, 2013.


A homeless scrap collector sleeps outside in central Athens May 26, 2013.


Stephanos became homeless in late 2012 when the clothes shop, where he had worked for over a decade, closed down and he had no income to pay for his flat. He now lives next to a church in central Athens and eats in soup kitchens. Stephanos smokes a cigarette as he sits on a rug in central Athens May 16, 2013.


36-year-old unemployed clerk Michael sits in the sun near a bridge in central Athens May 24, 2013. Michael worked as a hotel clerk for over fifteen years but when the hotel closed he was unable to find work and in late 2011 became homeless, two months later he was diagnosed with lymph node and thyroid cancer. He now lives outside a church.


51-year-old Romanian truck driver Adrian, who lost his job in 2010 when the lorry company he was working for closed down, sits with his head in his hands in central Athens January 18, 2013. Adrian survives by collecting scrap and lives in an abandoned warehouse in Athens central vegetable market.


50-year-old Giorgos sits with his belongings under a bridge, where he lives with a group of other homeless people, in central Athens May 25, 2013. Giorgos was forced to close down the billiard hall he owned in 2006, and spent time in prison for not paying his social security debts.


35-year-old Vassilis, who has been treated for severe physiological issues, sits in the afternoon sun under the bridge where he has lived for the last year and half in central Athens May 25, 2013.


58-year-old Matheos stands next to the makeshift shelter where he has lived since late 2011, on a hill in central Athens January 23, 2013.


56-year-old Boris Potev, a Bulgarian immigrant, lies on a mattress amid garbage in an Athens suburb April 9, 2013.


Michael, a 36-year-old unemployed man, poses by an abandoned open-air cinema in central Athens February 8, 2013. Michael worked as a hotel clerk for over fifteen years but when the hotel closed he was unable to find work and in late 2011 became homeless. Two months later he was diagnosed with lymph node and thyroid cancer. He now lives outside a church.


Marialena, a former drug addict who is on a methadone rehabilitation program, pushes away her boyfriend Dimitrios who is trying to clean up her self-inflicted wounds, under a bridge in central Athens May 15, 2013.


42-year-old Marialena, a homeless AIDS sufferer and former drug addict who is on a methadone rehabilitation program, drinks coffee after waking up next to her boyfriend Dimitrios in central Athens May 26, 2013. Dimitrios, 51, was a dancer in a famous Greek folk dancing troupe until he lost his job three years ago and became homeless.


Source: Reuters

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localsavage's picture

Thanks...Bilberberg.  Sleep tight on your silk sheets,you earned it.../sarc

Big Slick's picture

Interesting, the ubiquitous American-references on the clothing of the Greek homeless.  USA hats, Venice Beach T-shirts, Bernanke underwear (whoops, those were just skid marks)

[BTW according to ZH in the first 15 minutes this story has gotten over 1300 reads.   That's intersting to me]

ACP's picture

Behold! The ultimate outcome of Socialism!

Or what happens when you assume the government will take care of you, and then suddenly, it doesn't.


Best said at the end of The Usual Suspects:

azzhatter's picture

I will never be satisfied until I see Barosso and Von Rumpuy hanging from a lamp post

jbvtme's picture

wonder if blackstone is buying greek fixer uppers?

ACP's picture

Speaking of Greek real estate, you can get an ocean view house dirt cheap. Check some of these out...

EUR 154k for this:

Even better properties:

(at the bottom of the page in the second link, there is a Greek ISLAND for sale - 119 acres)


ACP's picture

No, but there's a small spot on Clitoris.

booboo's picture

is that near Taintopolis?

AldousHuxley's picture

plant shop owner ==> get a real job

clothes shop owner ===> get a real job

hotel clerk ===> get a real job

truck driver ===> get a real job

billiard hall owner ===> get a real job

drug addict with self-inflicted wounds ===> can't even suicide right

old dancer ===> get a real job


what did these people expect? this has nothing to do with greece but personal choices to not get a real job.


LetThemEatRand's picture

Yep, let those (former) business owners eat Rand.  

Calmyourself's picture

The important thing is they leave nothing for their heirs, your employees unionize yet?

LetThemEatRand's picture

Forbes 10 wealthiest women.  "The second richest woman is Christy Walton of the U.S., who inherited her husband John Walton’s stake in Wal-Mart when he died in a plane crash in 2005. She clocks in at $28.2 billion — up nearly $3 billion from a year ago due to an increase in the price of Wal-Mart stock."  The productive "class."

James_Cole's picture

I was reading Jaron Lanier the other day and he was talking about jobs being a social construct and he's entirely right. It's a good way to look at it.

In the past slavery was seen as a-ok, now in the western world not so much. Let's keep it that way. 

Lore's picture

No offense, but your point is shamefully cold blooded and ignorant.  THERE IS NO WORK.  THERE IS NOTHING. 

And this seems like a good time to remind readers that there is no difference between the vignettes presented above and what we see in tent cities popping up and expanding all across America.  MANY OF THESE PEOPLE HAVE SKILLED TRADES AND PROFESSIONAL EDUCATION. 

Homeless 1000 tent city in LA

Big one tripled in size in Jersey 

List of tent cities in United States

"Regular, middle class Americans, many of whom lived from paycheque to paycheque, down on their luck when they lost their job..."

"THERE, BUT FOR THE GRACE OF GOD, GO I..."(Proverb att. John Bradford)


Calmyourself's picture


BS, not exclusive in any way, both scenarios end the same, elites in charge of your every breath, I won't have it..

macholatte's picture



elites in charge of your every breath,


"A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed."


It's that "Well Regulated Militia" part that keeps getting ignored. That's the necessary part. That's the scary part for the establishment, and one of these days ........


Henry Hub's picture

***and one of these days ........***

Well I wouldn't hold hold your breath my friend. It looks like it's going to be a long, long wait in this county

NidStyles's picture

I don't see you organizing anything.

Bearwagon's picture

Well, if I remember correctly, he broke a window lately, thereby providing "growth" to the economy! What have you done?  ;-)

Henry Hub's picture

***I don't see you organizing anything.***

That's because I haven't, and I don't intend to. Leading anything is a suicide mission in this country. The government is just waiting to bag the leaders. No, the police state is here and now, sad to say.

Never One Roach's picture

I recently visted my cousin in Austin and was shocked by the number of homeless on the hwy crossways. The city is tyring to move them out to "the country" because "they bother people downtown." Crime there at night is so bad the urbanites claim they are afraid to go out  at night. Used to be a nice place...a collge town. No more.


"progress" & "growth"....have mixed consequences.

Dave Thomas's picture

All of those folks in that laundry list created something more than your average tax office clerk who sits on their fat ass and does their shitty job badly all day at being a parasite.

cornflakesdisease's picture

You're a real humanitarian.  You should move over to kitco, their equally as heartless over there.

MythicalFish's picture

Real job as in stockbroker, HFT jockey, NY Fed trader/analyst, condo flipper, Python programmer, tax collector? Yeah right, move into the 21st century Greece goddamnit.

stacking12321's picture


why do you lump python programmer in with those undesireables?

you're into perl, i take it...

NoClueSneaker's picture

They all applied for the job at Goldman Sux, have been denied while human beings.

... and fuck you ...


tabasco71's picture

I agree.  The people on this list undoubtedly are unfortunate, but if I take a stroll around London this afternoon, I'm sure I can provide a a dozen or so pictures and accompanying stories of misfortune and equal poverty/bleak prospects.

These listed examples have a very loose connection to the Greece crisis and the capitalist system.

I thought this was a 'guest post' when I read it, so I'm disappointed that ZH is publishing something this weak.

fiddy pence haff pound's picture

Aldous. Pick your own fucking flowers. While you're at it, knit your own fuckin clothes.

Get your own billiard table. source your own Chinese products, and for god sakes

don't go to Vegas.

How far you have fallen. I used to read your comments.

I hope you're hung over and forgot how to deliver irony

JungleJim's picture

Gets lapped up as soon as it hits the market ...

Scro's picture

Why would anyone choose to live in an apartment.

AldousHuxley's picture

weather is too nice to spend your life inside a prison and TV signals are bad in the  isles?

pine_marten's picture

Or perhaps the Hillcrest area of San Diego........

kchrisc's picture

How about heads in a basket?!

Pure Evil's picture

I don't get it. Wasn't the EU supposed to provide for the free movement of people within the Eurosphere.

Here's my suggestion. Move to Germany and start displacing the Turks as welfare recipients.

Same as in the US, our southern neighbors coming north to become new US government handout dependents, (or, unregistered Democrats)

molecool's picture

Same reason homeless are moving to Santa Monica and not Wisconsin - Germany is a very cold country and being homeless there (social services or not) is rather painful.

Peter Pan's picture

Your own government can't take care of you, but thank God foreign governments step in to fill the void. (sarc)

Crtrvlt's picture

Or fascism when the sole purpose of the Greek "bailout" was to keep the banks afloat and to hell with everything else.

tango's picture

Behold! The ultimate outcome of Socialism!

ACP,  What's really pathetic is that apparently the populace has forgotten its ancient practice of agriculture and feeding itself.  Greece is a small nation with rich farmland surrounded by plentiful oceans.  At one time it did feed itself and rather cheaply.  We cancelled our trip this year when we got word that things were so much worse than what was being reported - gangs, violence, kidnapping, looting, destruction...just so pitiful. 

ACP's picture

Pathetic, isn't it?

There is an old term applied to Russians also: "Russians make the best horse traders."

It's now: "Russians (and other Central Europeans) make the best internet thieves."

Why? After decades of Communism, the most prevalent skill is how to "game" the system.


Luckily, there are lots of Greeks and Russians who are good, ethical people, so eventually (hopefully) things will turn out for the better, but not without significant pain.

Its_the_economy_stupid's picture

It's interesting, this use of the word "pain". I see it over and over again. And I wonder at what writers are thinking when they use it. Despite the images it may conjure, more appropriate words might be "endless suffering, and death."

Telemakhos's picture

Umm, actually, no.  Greece is a rocky, stubborn climate that historically yielded little except colonists who could be sent to the Black Sea and Sicily to produce wheat and merchants who could buy more from Egypt.  Athens was, despite its olive crops, agriculturally poor, and little of Greece was really self-sustaining once the population got above bronze-age levels.  If you read ancient Greek (or English translations thereof), you'll find constant references to the land's inability to support the population.  Check out fragment 3 of the Cypria, an epic poem about the Trojan war (in translation, since I doubt many ZHers read Greek):

There was a time when the countless tribes of men, though wide-dispersed, oppressed the surface of the deep-bosomed earth, and Zeus saw it and had pity and in his wise heart resolved to relieve the all-nurturing earth of men by causing the great struggle of the Ilian war, that the load of death might empty the world. And so the heroes were slain in Troy, and the plan of Zeus came to pass.

In later (classical) times, it was naval power that fed the Athenians, either by commerce or by conquest. Power brings food. Most nations today don't have the food security to feed themselves without imports; Greece is no different, except that they're also broke, never bothered to invest in much industry, and so won't have much to trade for food unless the rest of Europe pays for them to eat.

Harbanger's picture

Maybe it's the result of global warming.  Or maybe it's because they're not fit to shine their ancestors shoes.

NidStyles's picture

Probably the later, because the former is bullshit.

Bearwagon's picture

Would you mind to tell that to the melting glaciers?

Tom of the Missouri's picture

Yesterday news.  European lowest spring temps in 50 years, caused by globabal warning I suppose. 

fiddy pence haff pound's picture

did you happen to miss the job titles under the photos. It's not

like they've been living off gov money.

Is that not good enough for ya?

See Aldous below, and what he thinks of those jobs.

Buck Johnson's picture

What hit me even more is the age of  the people, where most should be in the prime of there career/money making abilitiy and/or close to retirement.  But all are destitute and everything is gone.  I look at this and the faces and wonder, what would happen if this was done to the US by it's own hand.  Can you imagine, it would be worse.