imagescapy772k.jpg  Spanish Demonstration against Public Service Cuts Thousands of schools were closed last Wednesday when Greek teachers joined other public sector workers in a strike against the government's cuts in puiblic services According to Reuters news agency some 5000 members of the ADEDY union demonstrated in front of the Greek parliament chanting 'we won't pay for your crisis'. At one point riot police fired tear gas on the demonstrators. The Papandreou social democratic government in Greece was elected on a platform of investment in public services and some policies favourable to the lower paid. However since it has come to office it has agreed to EU demands that it cuts its budget deficit to 3%. It has introduced a raft of emergency measures including freezing public sector pay and pensions and a savage cut back in public sector jobs. Reuters quoted a primary school teacher: "The prime minister didn't keep his promises and he is dipping his hands in the pockets of the poor," said Eleni Papapostolou, 46, a teacher and mother of two. "I have to cut out coffee just to get by. Ordinary people have debts too." Last Wednesday's strike was only the first of a series of planned protests. Meanwhile in Spain teachers and other public sector workers have been demonstrating against plans to raise the pension age from 65 to 67. These kinds of protests will spread throughout Europe as gopvernments seek to make public sector workers and the poor pay for a crisis which has been brought about by the very neo-liberal, free market policies which they have been pursuing more or less enthusiastically for the past 30 years. One thing is for certain - it is not the public sector nor education which has caused the crisis and education workers will not be prepared to see their services destroyed in a bid to shore up the system.