Friday August 1, 2014 Search
Weather | Athens
31o C
24o C
News
Business
Comment
Life
Sports
Community
Survival Guide
Greek Edition
Lost battle

By Costas Iordanidis

Antonis Samaras’s visit on Wednesday to the Ionian island of Cephalonia following Sunday’s destructive earthquake represented his finest hour as prime minister. Outside the hallways of the Maximos Mansion, beyond silly public relations stunts, sundry declarations and organized speeches to carefully selected audiences, Samaras is a politician of the street with a rare talent for communicating with the people.

We would expect that irrespective of whether the austerity measures he is implementing are right or wrong, he would try to inspire citizens by coming into direct contact with them, and possibly achieving much in the process. Inexplicably, Samaras has shut himself away from the world, spending most of his days within the confines of his office. By doing so he has allowed public sentiment to be shaped by the opposition, while a number of his representatives have escalated tensions with SYRIZA.

Greek politics is polarized. SYRIZA chief Alexis Tsipras has once again demanded an investigation into the adoption and implementation of the two memorandums signed with Greece’s international creditors. Samaras had also promised such a probe before changing tack and forming a coalition government with PASOK.

Since then, however, the situation has deteriorated considerably as Greece’s middle class has been crippled by austerity measures and is no longer there to keep society balanced. It is clear that if and when he becomes prime minister, Tsipras will have to offer the people a good show as he will have nothing else tangible to give. The demand for action and blood in the arena will come from a politically diverse group of people.

In the early years after the restoration of democracy, an effort was made to create a code of political conduct defined by the “enlightened right” and covering the entire spectrum through to the “reasonable left.” The endeavor failed. When PASOK first emerged back then it was even more radical than the Communist Party.

The right, meanwhile, was rocked to its core in the elections of 1977 when the nationalists won nearly 7 percent of the vote.

The National Alignment party soon disappeared from the Greek political map and PASOK evolved into a conventional leadership party. Today, SYRIZA has come to replace PASOK in that role and the right has become completely fragmented.

What has not changed since then is that Greece’s political parties have not managed to evolve so that they are no longer centered on their leaders. We remain focused on the party chief.

This of course would not necessarily be a bad thing if Samaras and PASOK leader Evangelos Venizelos played the role of leader to better effect and fought their battles on the level of the citizens rather than via mouthpieces on television.

ekathimerini.com , Thursday Jan 30, 2014 (10:10)  
In trying to conquer, Putin unites Europe
Our own worst enemies
Summer turbulence
Capital upgrade
Greece to help ´hundreds´ of Chinese leave Libya
With the violence in Libya escalating to its worst level since the 2011 ouster of dictator Moammar Gadhafi, governments from around the world are scrambling to evacuate their citizens from t...
Plan to restore Asopos River enters final stage
Plans are in the final stage for the ecological restoration of Asopos River in Central Greece following a deal to install an integrated water resources management system. The 37.6-million-eu...
Inside News
Traders unhappy with turnover
Three weeks into the summer sales, traders say that purchases are not satisfactory. Shopping levels appear to be lower than during the same period last year, or on the same level at best, ev...
No rivals for Intralot as it bags racing bet permit
Intralot confirmed previous reports on Thursday by appearing as the sole bidder in a tender for the license to operate Greek horse-race betting held by state privatization fund TAIPED. Frenc...
Inside Business
SOCCER
One win and one loss in Europa League
Greece had a hit and a miss in the first-leg games for the third qualifying round of the Europa League on Thursday, as Atromitos scored a 2-1 win at Sarajevo while Asteras Tripolis lost 1-0 ...
SOCCER
Goalless draw at Liege puts Greens in driving seat
Panathinaikos got the upper hand in the battle for entry to the Champions League playoffs after snatching a goalless draw at Standard Liege on Wednesday. If anything, the Greek cup holders m...
Inside Sports
SPONSORED LINK: FinanzNachrichten.de
SPONSORED LINK: BestPrice.gr
 RECENT NEWS
1. One win and one loss in Europa League
2. Greece to help ´hundreds´ of Chinese leave Libya
3. Traders unhappy with turnover
4. No rivals for Intralot as it bags racing bet permit
5. Energy cost cuts even without EU approval
6. KEPE: Greek economy returned to growth in Q2
more news
Today
This Week
1. Motorists refusing to pay tolls on Corinth-Kalamata highway to be monitored
2. Euro flows reveal shift in sentiment as losses mount
3. Greece may ignore EU and lower energy costs for business, says minister
4. EU puzzles over emergency funds for euro area bank crisis agency
5. Only 5 percent of stores see brisker business during this year's summer sales
6. Fake psychic caught in Thessaloniki after gaining 35,000 from victim
Today
This Week
1. Quadriplegic woman on life support 'dies due to unpaid power bills'
2. Wine cup used by Pericles found in grave north of Athens
3. Defense Minister Avramopoulos to represent Greece at European Commission
4. World’s largest solar boat on Greek mission
5. Greece names fifth privatization agency chief in four years
6. Greek coast guard picks up 77 migrants off Myconos
   Find us ...
  ... on
Twitter
     ... on Facebook   
About us  |  Subscriptions  |  Advertising  |  Contact us  |  Athens Plus  |  RSS  |   
Copyright © 2014, H KAΘHMEPINH All Rights Reserved.