Defeatism is probably the government’s greatest enemy today. As long as the premier and some key ministers kept defending and implementing reforms, they had the advantage of initiative and progress. But then they began bowing to pressure.
The people are already furious about all the taxes they have to pay and are getting angrier as probes reveal the extent of the rot in the system. Still, most would continue to support the government if they felt it was making changes and had a core of reliable ministers to see the country’s recovery through.
Evangelos Venizelos and PASOK are in a difficult position, but if they back down now they will face an even bigger risk of political extinction. If there is one thing the crisis has taught us, it’s that politicians who give up halfway through a challenging situation never make it. Prime Minister Antonis Samaras and his government still have a chance to get the country where it needs to be, which is not as far away as it once was.