Saturday Jan 31, 2015 Search
Weather | Athens
16o C
13o C
News
Business
Comment
Life
Sports
Community
Survival Guide
Greek Edition
Facing two choices

By Alexis Papachelas

There are plenty of people who voted the current coalition government into power two years ago that feel they are being given no choice but to choose the opposition SYRIZA party in the next general election and resent it. They are angered by a number of political decisions made by the government following the cabinet reshuffle and especially by the removal of certain politicians who got things done and defended their choices openly. Even before the reshuffle, these voters were angry at decisions that showed the political system is incapable of changing its tune regardless of the mess it has made of the country.

These voters constitute the backbone of what used to be the middle class in Greece and it is they who have paid one of the highest prices for the crisis. They have been bled dry by taxation and driven to near-insanity by ludicrous measures such as allowing any tax official to freeze their bank accounts at the slightest hint of a misdeed. Nevertheless, they did not fall for the How much worse could it be with SYRIZA? argument. They voted for New Democracy and to a lesser extent PASOK and Democratic Left because they believed that was the way to keep the country standing. And the truth is that the country did survive and it produced a rare group of ministers who did their jobs without qualms.

The prime minister earned the support of people who would never have considered voting for him in the past. He was seen as a leader who could be relied on, who would get the country to the other side of the river. All of a sudden, however, two-thirds of the way across and with the waters calmer, they feel that something has gone terribly wrong. Someone has sowed panic, the crew is starting to argue, the compass is spinning, and the passengers are frightened.

Sure, mistakes are made in politics, especially when the key players are stretched to their limit. But mistakes need to be followed up by a period of introspection and regrouping. The prime minister has two choices right now: to keep giving to pressure against change in the hope that voters will be ushered back into the fold on the promise of a handout here or a caress there, or to stay the course and fix the problems that have arisen from the troikas extreme doggedness.

Neither choice guarantees a win at the next general election. The first means that the coalition will lose any comparative advantage it has over SYRIZA. The second may lead Greece into the light but requires great determination and persistence.

Many battles still need to be fought before we will know with any certainty where things are headed and the government will come under a tremendous amount of pressure in the next few months. How it deals with this pressure will depend of whether the prime minister will tolerate destructive politicians.

ekathimerini.com , Sunday June 22, 2014 (15:28)  
Unyielding truth
This is not a game
SYRIZA must come up with pragmatic solutions, Schulz tells Kathimerini
Strange haste
Europe waits for proposals from Athens
European officials believe that there is scope for an agreement with the new Greek government but that Athens will have to accept a compromise on its demands. Officials in Brussels told Kath...
Notes provide more clues on prison breakout scheme
Police have found handwritten notes exchanged between 22-year-old Angeliki Spyropoulou and jailed members of the Conspiracy of the Cells of Fire at a safe house in Loutraki, west of Athens, ...
Inside News
ECBs Constancio signals Greek waiver may end if program dropped
Vitor Constancio signaled that the European Central Bank stands ready to end its acceptance of Greeces junk-rated debt for bank funding if the government drops out of an aid program. If a n...
Greece starts countdown to cash crunch saying bailout over
Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis set the clock ticking on Greeces standoff with the euro area on Friday saying hes ready to take his chances without a financial backstop rather than submi...
Inside Business
BASKETBALL
Panathinaikos preserves perfect home record
After yet another great performance at home, Panathinaikos defeated Galatasaray 86-77 in Athens on Friday to get to three wins in five games at the Euroleague top-16. The Greek champion shoo...
SOCCER
Gattuso: Unpaid OFI players couldnt buy food
Former coach Gennaro Gattuso has lifted the lid on the plight of crisis-club OFI Crete which has been banned from playing in the Super League until it clears mounting debts with its staff. T...
Inside Sports
SPONSORED LINK: FinanzNachrichten.de
SPONSORED LINK: BestPrice.gr
RECENT NEWS
1. Europe waits for proposals from Athens
2. Notes provide more clues on prison breakout scheme
3. Drug prices are falling but volume sold remains high
4. Tsipras plays down chance of rift
5. Ex-revenues chief Theoharis claimes political interference
6. Journalist to head Greeces National Intelligence Service
more news
Today
This Week
1. US to work closely with Greece and EU to resolve differences, says White House
2. Merkel rejects debt writedown for Greece
3. Greek bank debt plummets as investors head for the exit
4. Greek markets plunge as SYRIZA digs in on challenge to austerity
5. Tsipras says Greece to repay ECB, IMF, reach deal with euro area
6. Greece seeks EU allies but Germany holds firm
Today
This Week
1. Greek Elections 2015 | LIVE
2. SYRIZA heads for historic victory but without majority
3. Greek Elections 2015 | LIVE
4. SYRIZA's win will test institutions
5. Greek Elections 2015: The day after | LIVE
6. EU must accept that Greek debt relief is inevitable
Find us ...
... on
Twitter
... on Facebook
About us  |  Subscriptions  |  Advertising  |  Contact us  |  Athens Plus  |  RSS  |   
Copyright 2015, H KAΘHMEPINH All Rights Reserved.