Sunday April 19, 2015 Search
Weather | Athens
14o C
09o C
News
Business
Comment
Life
Sports
Community
Survival Guide
Greek Edition
Paying heed to the critical mass

By Alexis Papachelas

Today I will concede part of this column to a friend who has been severely hit by the economic crisis, without however giving in to the temptation of portraying himself as an indignant victim. This person has always believed in the need for far-reaching reforms and is deeply frustrated by the lack of progress. He recently sent me the following e-mail:

ďI want to speak of the anthropological dimension of the Greek bankruptcy. I think that the clientelist and parasitic system that dominated Greece for decades (as of 1980 the left has been a pillar), set the standard of mediocrity in the administration and the government, and as a result Parliament and public affairs are in the hold of the lumpen part of Greece and the underworld. We have to understand that itís not that they do not want to regenerate this country but that they canít. This system can only breed monsters. Unfortunately, the creative Greece that could dig us out of the crisis is under a peculiar type of occupation. Worse of all, excess taxation is draining the peopleís last reserves (from the age of prosperity), which any reasonable person would use to induce growth and not in order to continue feeding the parasites. It is a complete deadlock.Ē

His outburst was followed by two footnotes:

ďThis year I have to pay (but wonít) a huge tax Ė even though I have no income Ė on the basis of my real estate assets. Our assets have already been taxed but Iím being asked to pay again because of the expenses criteria introduced by the government, which is essentially a wealth tax.Ē

I really donít know how to respond to that. It is, of course, absurd to pay taxes when he has no income and when it is absolutely certain that he is not tax dodger. As to whether our political system has received the message from the crisis and changed the way it thinks and operates, I donít want to and cannot lie. Sure, there are exceptions, people who fight against an absurd system, against corruption and against a partisan system that is programmed to reward the political acolytes.

My friendís frustration echoes that of a big chunk of Greeks who paid a disproportionate price for the crisis because they did not, or could not, hide their incomes. These are people who did not live off state coffers. Now they have been knocked out and are waiting to see light at the end of the tunnel.

The share of people who have managed to maintain their cool is getting smaller, because despair is the surest path to the political extremes. Time is running out for the political system to convince this critical mass of people that they truly want to change and rebuild the country on healthier foundations.

ekathimerini.com , Sunday June 1, 2014 (16:02)  
The price of compromise
Premierís choice
Back to the beginning
Protecting a key asset
Panousis skeptical about law allowing early prison release
Alternate Minister for Citizensí Protection Yiannis Panousis (photo) has distanced himself in an interview with Sundayís Kathimerini from a law passed on Friday that allows inmates suffering...
Spike in Syrians seeking asylum in Greece
The number of Syrians applying for asylum in Greece has risen by more than 250 percent this year, according to the head of Greeceís asylum service, Maria Stavropoulou. She told Sundayís Kath...
Inside News
US Treasury secretary urges Greece to reach debt deal
Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew (photo) is urging Greece to reach a deal with its creditors, warning that a default would "create immediate hardship for Greece" and damage the world economy. Gr...
Greece poised to sign gas deal with Russia, says German weekly
Greece is poised to sign a gas deal with Russia as early as Tuesday which could bring 3-5 billion euros into depleted government coffers, German magazine Der Spiegel reported, citing a senio...
Inside Business
BASKETBALL
Triumph for Olympiakos at Barcelona
Olympiakos produced its best away performance so far this season to defeat host Barcelona 76-63 on Friday and snatch the home advantage in the Euroleague play-offs. The Reds have now tied th...
BASKETBALL
Another heavy loss for improved Panathinaikos in Moscow
Panathinaikos raised its performance since Tuesday but still suffered a 20-point loss at CSKA Moscow on Thursday to find itself trailing 2-0 after Game 2 of the Euroleague play-offs. Having ...
Inside Sports
SPONSORED LINK: FinanzNachrichten.de
SPONSORED LINK: BestPrice.gr
†RECENT NEWS
1. Panousis skeptical about law allowing early prison release
2. Spike in Syrians seeking asylum in Greece
3. Coalition ponders next move as talks with lenders resume
4. Potami not seeking cooperation with other parties, says leader
5. US Treasury secretary urges Greece to reach debt deal
6. Greece poised to sign gas deal with Russia, says German weekly
more news
Today
This Week
1. Coalition ponders next move as talks with lenders resume
2. Potami not seeking cooperation with other parties, says leader
3. Spike in Syrians seeking asylum in Greece
4. Panousis skeptical about law allowing early prison release
5. The price of compromise
6. Premierís choice
Today
This Week
1. Quarantine for Greek bank subsidiaries in neighboring countries
2. Greek finance ministry hits back at German newspaper report
3. Time to get serious
4. 'Civil war' brewing over disputed Greek goldmine
5. Putting off payments led to Q1 budget primary surplus
6. In the shadow of Greek prison, locals dread Golden Dawn trial
†††Find us ...
††... on
Twitter
†† ††... on Facebook ††
About us  |  Subscriptions  |  Advertising  |  Contact us  |  Athens Plus  |  RSS  |   
Copyright © 2015, H KAΘHMEPINH All Rights Reserved.