OPINION

In our upside-down world

In our upside-down world

It’s not that we are unaware of the dangers, and yet, very often we abandon ourselves to blessed inertia, or to nonsensical hyperactivity where we think that looking busy absolves us of responsibility for what will follow. Our daily lives are full of examples of this national recklessness (from tolerance of how we drive to our public bankruptcies) where we consider threats unworthy of attention until they are so big that we cannot cope with them. Indifference, procrastination and persistence with failed practices lead to an absurd situation in which backwardness is considered progress, where failure is inevitable, where national defense is a field for petty political bickering. And then we ask ourselves why we cannot invest in all the human capital of the Greeks, why the young leave and why they don’t return. 

A recent example of our negligence: It has emerged that providers of electrical power are in arrears to the national electricity system, while also withholding municipal rates that they have collected, to the tune of 520 million euros. Of course, rocketing prices of natural gas and other energy sources are causing great problems for providers and customers, and, as the problem worsened, so did its solution become more difficult. Did no one foresee this? And now, in the midst of a cost-of-living crisis, what will happen if customers are forced to abandon their providers and enroll with the Service of Last Resort, where they will pay even higher prices? Why is it that “opening” markets is just as likely to lead to failure as continued state control? Either the model of administration and control is to blame or the people who are in positions of authority are not up to the task.

Is it possible, though, that so many people can be so incompetent? Over such a long period of time? Maybe the system is so wrong that even those who are suited to the task cannot function as they should? This is not necessarily the result of corruption. It is the product of a mentality that we see from the soccer stadium to Parliament, where whatever our side does is right and whatever the others do is wrong. Because, in the upside-down world that we have created, acknowledging our mistakes does not lead to the necessary correction but to the benefit of our rival. So that he can then impose his mistakes on us.