Wednesday Jul 23, 2014 Search
Weather | Athens
29o C
22o C
News
Business
Comment
Life
Sports
Community
Survival Guide
Greek Edition
Politicians behaving like tribal chiefs

By Costas Iordanidis

The establishment of a monarch-free democracy was hailed as one of the biggest achievements of the Metapolitefsi era in Greece. It is argued that by changing the regime, the root of evil was removed, staving off the kind of national crises and dramas caused by crown intervention. We wont argue the point: We are in a crisis right now, so enough said.

But, while the system is supposed to have solved its problems, in the past few weeks and especially after Mays elections for local government and European government it has been observed that a political exchange is in the offing, aimed at ensuring a majority of 180 deputies in the 300-seat House so that a new president can be elected by the present Parliament at some point before spring. The objective of this opaque process which is being condemned by various parties, in varying tones is to ensure the survival of the government through 2015 and until the end of its four-year term. If the government does manage to survive into the first few months of next year, it will have achieved a great feat indeed given the circumstances. Of course neither SYRIZA nor any other party can trigger early elections, especially since the victory claimed by the main opposition party in Mays polls was not really overwhelming at all.

The fact of the matter is that the post of president, so fervently championed by the political class of the Metapolitefsi, has become subject to manipulation by the political parties and their leaders and the result is that it is simply no longer attractive. Democratic Left chief Fotis Kouvelis said that he was not interested in being nominated some time ago. Former Prime Minister and New Democracy President Costas Karamanlis, whose name has been heard recently, is clearly not interested either.

As we are obviously not suggesting a return to a monarchy, it is high time that the pillars of the institution of the presidency start supporting it rather than undermining it. On a practical level it makes no sense whatsoever that such a large majority is required in Parliament to elect a new president 151 votes are enough. Bipartisanship is not ensured by inflated majorities.

The problem, however, is not found on an institutional level but in the twisted mentality that pervades Greek political life. It was the behavior of our political leaders that undermined the monarchy and is today constantly undercutting the role of the presidency.

There is nothing surprising about this of course. When it comes to self-preservation, Greek political leaders with some exceptions will stop at nothing. They lament the constitution, its institutions and even the party they lead when faced with reactions. They are, in effect, tribal chiefs.

ekathimerini.com , Thursday June 26, 2014 (10:35)  
Unequal after death
Chinese investment
Forty-year milestones
The great enemy
Finance Minister, MPs to finalize overhaul of party funding laws
Finance Minister Gikas Hardouvelis is on Wednesday to meet coalition MPs in a bid to finalize an overhaul of regulations governing the funding of political parties, one of five prior actions...
EU envoy sees clear progress on immigration, asylum
European Home Affairs Commissioner Cecilia Malmstrom on Tuesday expressed satisfaction at the clear progress made by Greece in the areas of migration and asylum while Development Minister ...
Inside News
Number of firms filing for bankruptcy in Greece drops
The number of companies that filed for bankruptcy in Greece last year declined by 5.5 percent from 2012, according to ICAP Group data released on Tuesday by the Federation of Business Inform...
TAIPED finally finds suitors for Afandou properties
Following the third sale announcement, state privatization fund TAIPED has managed to find five candidate buyers for the two plots up for grabs at Afandou on Rhodes. The fund announced on Tu...
Inside Business
TRACK & FIELD
Athens, the Marathon capital of the world for good
Paco Borao, the man who restored Athens as the Marathon capital of the world with the establishment at the Olympic Sports Center of the headquarters of the International Association of Marat...
TRACK & FIELD
Pole vault record on same day as three doping cases
Greek track and field had a mixed weekend, as on the same day as Katerina Stefanidi matched the national record in pole vault as well as the leading result in Europe so far this season, thre...
Inside Sports
SPONSORED LINK: FinanzNachrichten.de
SPONSORED LINK: BestPrice.gr
RECENT NEWS
1. Number of firms filing for bankruptcy in Greece drops
2. TAIPED finally finds suitors for Afandou properties
3. Traders say last weekend proved Sunday opening is pointless
4. Fight for ADMIE privatization ends
5. Strategy focuses on debt sustainability
6. Minor gains at the end of up-and-down bourse session
more news
Today
This Week
1. Unequal after death
2. Greek sovereign debt at 174.1 percent of GDP in first quarter
3. Chinese investment
4. Greeks getting better at recycling, though still Europe's laggards
5. Shares in Greek renewable energy firm drop in trade debut
6. Piraeus prosecutor investigating use of funds for building renovation
Today
This Week
1. Ex-Credit Suisse banker taps lesson for Greek rebound
2. The cost of excellence
3. Greece seen in third bailout as bonds not enough, economists say
4. Summer storms cause problems in Thessaloniki, spread across the country
5. Climber dies in Mount Olympus fall
6. Greek banks able to tap investors after stress tests, HFSF Says
Find us ...
... on
Twitter
... on Facebook
About us  |  Subscriptions  |  Advertising  |  Contact us  |  Athens Plus  |  RSS  |   
Copyright 2014, H KAΘHMEPINH All Rights Reserved.