Friday October 31, 2014 Search
Weather | Athens
18o C
13o C
News
Business
Comment
Life
Sports
Community
Survival Guide
Greek Edition
Problems on many fronts

By Costas Iordanidis

The situation in Greece is looking very bleak indeed. On the one hand, the relationship between Athens and its international lenders is becoming increasingly tense, though the blame does not lie exclusively with the troika representatives, who have vastly differing opinions over how the Greek debt pile should be managed. Under pressure, the government has decided to act alone on a matter of different issues, expressing resistance toward reforms and processes whose necessity had already been agreed upon. Examples include the ratification of the 2014 budget, the reduction of VAT on food service and changes to property tax without taking the troika’s considerations on board. Changes can be made only when they are agreed upon. Unilateral decisions are unacceptable because they set a precedent that may be imitated by other countries in future bailout programs.

The government probably thought that the country’s lenders would show more leniency when presented with the argument that without some slack Greece will most likely end up with a SYRIZA government. This political argument did not receive the anticipated response, just like political arguments on economic matters have failed in the past, such as when PASOK leader Evangelos Venizelos was handed the finance portfolio. Fiscal changes for bailed-out nations are made according to the terms of economics rather than politics.

Beyond what is going on in the eurozone, the government is also facing problems on the domestic front as SYRIZA continues to gain increasing influence among voters. As a result, the confrontation has shifted focus and more recently has centered on the issue of terrorism. There is no doubt that some members of the leftist party hold unconventional views regarding what constitutes domestic security, but the escape of November 17’s Christodoulos Xeros was obviously not orchestrated by SYRIZA, which demanded, with some delay, the resignation of the responsible ministers.

The other problem is that PASOK is fading gradually from the political scene and New Democracy still faces the major challenge of how to hold on to its traditional conservative voters. The crackdown on ultra-right Golden Dawn was not the glorious success anticipated and Greece’s assumption of the EU presidency has not improved the government’s image as it had hoped, but, rather, has been absorbing energy and focus from economic matters.

The result of all these factors being in play at the same time is more jitters and polarization, which have reached such a degree in Parliament that they may pose a risk to the democratic system.

ekathimerini.com , Thursday Jan 23, 2014 (09:35)  
The judiciary’s responsibility
Findings raise eyebrows
Countering Turkish swagger in the Eastern Mediterranean
Time is running out in Afghanistan
Man shot dead, woman injured in Vathis square attack
A 42-year-old man was shot dead and a woman was slightly injured after two unidentified men in a vehicle rode past a cafeteria in Vathis Square, central Athens, and opened fire in the early ...
A year after GD members shot dead, police have no leads
A year after two members of neofascist Golden Dawn were shot dead outside the party’s offices in Neo Iraklio, north of Athens, police sources admitted that they have no leads to the killers....
Inside News
Germany’s 10-year bonds decline before euro-area inflation data
Germany’s government bonds fell before a report economists said will show the euro-area inflation rate stayed near a five-year low this month. Price gains that have been less than the Europe...
Cyprus’s Georgiades Bets on Economy for Irish-Style Bailout Exit
Cyprus could benefit from strong bank stress test results and positive economic signs to pull off an Irish-style bailout exit and make a full return to the bond market, Finance Minister Harr...
Inside Business
BASKETBALL
Obradovic watches Greens thrash his Fenerbahce
The second homecoming of former Panathinaikos coach Zeljko Obradovic, now at Fenerbahce, was not as emotional as last year’s, but it was certainly was the night of an emphatic triumph for th...
SOCCER
Berg returns to add spice to Panathinaikos´s Cup win
The second round of games for the group stage of the Greek Cup produced plenty of interesting games and results in midweek, but it still lags the upset potential that the knock-out stages of...
Inside Sports
SPONSORED LINK: FinanzNachrichten.de
SPONSORED LINK: BestPrice.gr
 RECENT NEWS
1. Germany’s 10-year bonds decline before euro-area inflation data
2. Cyprus’s Georgiades Bets on Economy for Irish-Style Bailout Exit
3. Man shot dead, woman injured in Vathis square attack
4. Obradovic watches Greens thrash his Fenerbahce
5. Berg returns to add spice to Panathinaikos´s Cup win
6. Power rates soared 60 pct in six years
more news
Today
This Week
1. Man shot dead, woman injured in Vathis square attack
2. Cyprus’s Georgiades Bets on Economy for Irish-Style Bailout Exit
3. Germany’s 10-year bonds decline before euro-area inflation data
4. Greek euro dilemma is back as minister predicts volatility
5. Students hijack university senate meeting
6. Clientelism belongs to the past, says Mitsotakis
Today
This Week
1. Austria’s creative bookkeeping beats Greece on secret debts
2. End of reason, end of humanity
3. Clean bill of health for Greek banks from stress tests
4. Samaras pledges action after flash floods in Athens
5. Eurobank, National Bank restructurings eliminate capital gap
6. Athens flood damage assessed, compensation payments to begin
   Find us ...
  ... on
Twitter
     ... on Facebook   
About us  |  Subscriptions  |  Advertising  |  Contact us  |  Athens Plus  |  RSS  |   
Copyright © 2014, H KAΘHMEPINH All Rights Reserved.