Tuesday September 2, 2014 Search
Weather | Athens
29o C
23o C
News
Business
Comment
Life
Sports
Community
Survival Guide
Greek Edition
Nothing new about ‘new Greece’

By Pantelis Boukalas

Pre-election campaigns run in a fever of confrontation – whether real or contrived – allow us to forgive a lot of our parties and candidates: tactless and incendiary comments, dilemmas meant to entrap or blackmail the public, proclamations that are way over the top and making the race personal among them. We know this drowns out the demand for clean political rhetoric that does not pander to public sentiment, but we have given up hoping for this even in the calmest and most electorally neutral times, so it would be naive to expect it now in the middle of this frenzy.

Moreover, as much as we evoke our ancient ancestors and all the wonderful concepts they developed (such a democracy, dialectics and the art of dialogue) we can’t forget that they also invented demagoguery and discord. When they did they were at war, far from home, and seized by a paralyzing battle of leadership over the beautiful bounty. Homer must have had some reason to laud the intellectual legacy passed on by the ancients by using an incident that displayed so much overinflated and uncomradely (and, in today’s terms, unpatriotic) ego.

But let us leave our ancient ancestors for the time being and get back to what interests us today: that we are in the last week before Greeks head to the polls for the first round of local authority elections. And the biggest clash right now, the one that is lighting fires and upping the ante, is that between New Democracy and opposition SYRIZA over who will get to use the slogan “New Greece.” And of course the confrontation is restricted to figuring out who said these two magical words first, who can claim dibs and so on.

Dibs? Let’s be fair. Neither New Democracy nor SYRIZA can claim exclusive use of the words nor say that they came up with the idea first. In the post-World War II era, the first to use the phrase was Andreas Papandreou, stoking the people’s spirits and gleaning their votes. Standing on a balcony and addressing an adulating public, he called for a new Greece and the crowd roared its encouragement. As a slogan it is without doubt a part of PASOK’s and particularly Papandreou’s legacy, just like the slogan “Greece belongs to the Greeks,” which was first used by LAOS and then adopted by Golden Dawn.

The quest for a “new Greece,” a “new era” or a “new leaf” is not quite as new as some would think. Whatever meaning these terms once had, it’s been lost by a succession of dashed expectations. Words, however good they sound, are simply not enough and those who can endow them with meaning once more should do so.

ekathimerini.com , Tuesday May 13, 2014 (10:19)  
Politicized archaeology
Moderating expectations
EU’s three big problems all linked
A great president
Trial over 2013 murder of pawn merchant starts in Athens
The trial over the April 2013 murder of a 30-year-old man running a family-owned pawn shop in the suburb of Dafni began on Monday with the four defendants admitting to their role in the deat...
Rain and storms with hail expected in many parts of Greece
Rain and possible storms are expected in many parts of Greece on Tuesday, and particularly in the islands of the Ionian and on mainland Greece, where hailstorms are also likely, the Hellenic...
Inside News
New committee formed to assess progress of deregulation in closed-shop professions
A new committee consisting of 40 officials from the relevant ministries has been formed by Finance Minister Gikas Hardouvelis to assess the progress of liberalization measures introduced sin...
Tourism targets rise ever higher
The latest data have allowed the Hellenic Association of Tourism Enterprises (SETE) to raise its target for tourism arrivals and revenues this year higher still. During a meeting with main o...
Inside Business
SOCCER
Unlikely pair on the Super League summit
Veria and Atromitos are sitting pretty at the top of the Super League after the second round of games thanks to their away wins that made them the only clubs to have six points, as champion ...
BASKETBALL
Greek hoopsters go top of their group in World Cup
Greece has qualified to the second round of the FIBA World Cup after going top of its group of six through a third win in as many group games in Spain. On Monday it beat Puerto Rico 90-79 in...
Inside Sports
SPONSORED LINK: FinanzNachrichten.de
SPONSORED LINK: BestPrice.gr
 RECENT NEWS
1. Unlikely pair on the Super League summit
2. Trial over 2013 murder of pawn merchant starts in Athens
3. New committee formed to assess progress of deregulation in closed-shop professions
4. Rain and storms with hail expected in many parts of Greece
5. Greek hoopsters go top of their group in World Cup
6. Tourism targets rise ever higher
more news
Today
This Week
1. Politicized archaeology
2. Rain and storms with hail expected in many parts of Greece
3. Moderating expectations
4. New committee formed to assess progress of deregulation in closed-shop professions
5. Trial over 2013 murder of pawn merchant starts in Athens
6. Excavation work at Amphipolis reveals section of marble mosaic floor
Today
This Week
1. Thessaloniki mayor Boutaris sworn in wearing yellow star amid Golden Dawn protests
2. The battle against progress
3. Attack on gay couple in Athens leaves one man needing surgery
4. Strong undersea quake occurs off island of Milos, felt in Athens
5. Greek quest for debt relief faces hurdles in Paris
6. Hardouvelis, ECB executive discuss bank program, stress tests
   Find us ...
  ... on
Twitter
     ... on Facebook   
About us  |  Subscriptions  |  Advertising  |  Contact us  |  Athens Plus  |  RSS  |   
Copyright © 2014, H KAΘHMEPINH All Rights Reserved.