Wednesday May 27, 2015 Search
Weather | Athens
14o C
09o C
News
Business
Comment
Life
Sports
Community
Survival Guide
Greek Edition
A question of math

By Pantelis Boukalas

There are stratagems used in the process of political confrontation that must be as old as democracy itself, dating from when citizens first earned the right to choose between at least two candidates. Over the years, and because they have been overused, these stratagems have devolved into mere habits or knee-jerk reactions, a part of the political routine, a tradition that is passed down from one generation to the next, but each time a bit more eroded. Nevertheless, even though these machinations have proved to be of very limited effect in the majority of cases, those who espouse them remain plentiful – and of course include those who every so often propound the need for change in the way that political battles are conducted.

So, among the usual and expected tactics of sparring politicians is for party leaders (regardless of how small their grouping is) to start off by saying that the salvation of the country rests in his hands. For reasons of tact, the party or political movement has already been identified with the nation beforehand. Therefore, using simple math, if the party equals the nation and the leader equals the party, then the politician equals the nation. And the party leader making such bombastic claims can be great or small if we take recent history into account. Meanwhile, when this equation is put to use it is usually aimed primarily at the people inside the party itself, sort of like a tacit threat: Don’t doubt me, don’t judge me, because I may go down, and if I go down, so will the party and so will the nation, and so ultimately will you and any office you may happen to hold.

That said, there are only a few instances where the fate of a nation followed that of a leader and it was normally not good when it did happen. Those who claim themselves to be great, unique and irreplaceable are usually just another cog in the machinery of history. They are not driving the train, whatever they may imagine or their vanity whispers to them in their dreams.

The second strategy often applied in a political confrontation is bombarding the people with dilemmas and threats. This, of course, is the work of party propaganda machines who come up with dilemmas in the form of bait to be thrown out into the public and see who bites.

The political process, nevertheless, remains complex and dynamic, and the factors that influence which way an “undecided” voter will ultimately lean are also large in number and often contradictory. Because the human mind is a complex thing and is always exploring different paths, studying and checking each one. So, however simplistic or extortionate the rationale at party headquarters, the mathematics of society will always be superior because it is not limited to simple arithmetic.

ekathimerini.com , Tuesday May 6, 2014 (10:36)  
Romantic notions meet reality
Solving the Gordian Knot
Shame, justice, democracy
Worrying signs in ruling party
Kareli trial postponed
The trial of thirteen correctional officers in connection with the death of Albanian inmate Ilie Kareli at Nigrita Prison in northern Greece was postponed on Wednesday after the defense cite...
FOCUS
Target of Greek scorn shapes nation’s fate as IMF’s storm-chaser
When the IMF’s point man on Greece, Poul Thomsen, rebuffed the nation’s proposal in December to unlock more bailout funding, he wound up making his job even tougher. The Greek government’s f...
Inside News
EU funds at risk due to payment halt by the state
Greece runs the immediate risk of missing out on 1 billion euros worth of European Union subsidies this year from the previous support framework, which expires on December 31, as a payment f...
Half of Greeks cover their needs from their deposits
Greek salaried workers cannot buy what they want but, rather, have to limit themselves to what they can afford on their reduced disposable income, a survey by the Labor Institute of the Gene...
Inside Business
SOCCER
AEK Athens returns to top league after financial collapse
Greek club AEK Athens has just returned to the country's top soccer league, two years after financial collapse sent it to a lower league. One of the country's largest clubs, AEK sealed its s...
SOCCER
Berg brace gives Panathinaikos four-point lead
Panathinaikos beat Atromitos on Sunday and took advantage of the goalless draw between PAOK and Asteras Tripolis to open a four-point gap from PAOK at the top of the Super League play-off mi...
Inside Sports
SPONSORED LINK: FinanzNachrichten.de
SPONSORED LINK: BestPrice.gr
 RECENT NEWS
1. Kareli trial postponed
2. Target of Greek scorn shapes nation’s fate as IMF’s storm-chaser
3. AEK Athens returns to top league after financial collapse
4. EU funds at risk due to payment halt by the state
5. Half of Greeks cover their needs from their deposits
6. Greece reaps 2 billion euros per year from cruise sector
more news
Today
This Week
1. Romantic notions meet reality
2. Solving the Gordian Knot
3. Target of Greek scorn shapes nation’s fate as IMF’s storm-chaser
4. Kareli trial postponed
5. IMF's Blanchard says Greek budget proposals not enough
6. Germany sees progress on Greece, EU officials to confer on Thursday
Today
This Week
1. Conspiracy madness
2. National self-awareness put to the test
3. Albanian demarche raises concerns about possible territorial claims over Greece
4. Hotel contracts with a ‘Greek default clause’
5. Neither Grexit nor a dual currency will solve Greece’s problems
6. Merkel said to plan address for Greece if deal reached
   Find us ...
  ... on
Twitter
     ... on Facebook   
About us  |  Subscriptions  |  Advertising  |  Contact us  |  Athens Plus  |  RSS  |   
Copyright © 2015, H KAΘHMEPINH All Rights Reserved.