Monday, 19 September 2011

A Way out for Greece?

Commenting (sort of) on the serious economic situation in Europe, a coin dealer suggests that cash-strapped Greece has a solution available for her economic problems. I think the suggestion made will come as no surprise to anybody... On the premise that the dozy foreigners are not looking after the antiquities and
Greece and Italy hold vast accumulations of ancient artifacts which are neither being displayed in museums nor held in research collections. [...] It is past time to bring the private sector into this situation in a rational and constructive manner – to begin a process of placing all truly redundant antiquities in private hands.
That's what the Bolsheviks did, isn't it? The US being a primary beneficiary of that too. When the art has all gone, they can start cutting down all the trees for lumber for foreign export and confiscating railings from town houses and parks and selling them for scrap. The hurdles to cultural property asset-stripping are merely "ideological" and like so many evils in the coin collectors' world-view are all the fault of the "radical archaeologist".

When the USA starts suffering even deeper economic decline than at the present, will it too be considering, in the way these people suggest we Europeans should to suit them, selling off its two-thousand year old cultural assets? But then, what could they be?

Vignette: US dugup collectors see themselves as heirs of Lord Elgin?

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