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Home Publications Blogs Beat the Press Do an Increasing Number of Greeks Really Regard Workers Getting $2,000 a Month as a "Special Caste?"

Do an Increasing Number of Greeks Really Regard Workers Getting $2,000 a Month as a "Special Caste?"

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Tuesday, 19 July 2011 04:52

That's what the NYT tells us. It has a piece this morning on the union representing the workers at Greece's public electric utility. At one point it reports that:

"an increasing number of Greeks regard the power company workers in particular as an overpaid, overprotected caste. According to Mr. Fotopoulos, Genop’s 21,000 members are paid an average net salary of $1,980 a month and its 35,000 retirees an average net pension of $2,122 a month — much higher than the Greek average."

The monthly pay for caste members would be less than an hour's pay for high earners in the financial sector. It would be quite interesting if Greek politics had gotten to the point where most people had more resentment toward workers earning $1,980 in a month than the people who earn this amount in an hour.

Comments (3)Add Comment
crabs in a barrell
written by frankenduf, July 19, 2011 10:21
a crab can only grab a near adjacent crab and pull it down- it can only gaze in wonder at the bald eagle (blankfein) soaring in the clouds
...
written by Dick C, July 19, 2011 10:42
"It would be quite interesting if Greek politics had gotten to the point where most people had more resentment toward workers earning $1,980 in a month than the people who earn this amount in an hour."

It seems to me that we're just about at that point here in the U.S.
It depends on where we are comparing from
written by Bill H, July 19, 2011 11:50
Baker blissfully omits noting the "much higher than the Greek average" in the article. The people have resentment to the $1980/mth workers because they are comparing those workers to themselves, not to the much fewer wealthy elite. They don't care that those $1980/mth people make less than a few wealthy elite make, they care that those $1980/mth people make much more than they do.

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About Beat the Press

Dean Baker is co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research in Washington, D.C. He is the author of several books, his latest being The End of Loser Liberalism: Making Markets Progressive. Read more about Dean.

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