Easy come, easy go

Easy come, easy go

To give Stefanos Kasselakis, the new leader of the leftist opposition, his due, does anyone within SYRIZA recall what they were saying in 2012?

It was exactly 11 years ago when Dimitris Vitsas was weaving the narrative of counterattack: “The measures of social cannibalism impacting the incomes, wages, pensions and assets of the Greek people have already been decided upon. If the government and the troika [of foreign lenders] believe they’ve achieved something, they should realize that the major clash between the bailout policies, the austerity measures across Europe, and the interests of society has only just begun” (Corfu, 25/10/2012).

Panos Skourletis, who was then party secretary, regularly appeared on television vehemently advocating resistance against the bailout policies. He declared: “Do you know what is extreme today? The bailout [program]. The bailout [program] is the epitome of extremeness, violence and brutality” (Alpha, 22/10/2023).

This group of leaders not only misunderstood the desires of Greek society but also the preferences of their own supporters

There appear to be countless instances that the SYRIZA folk seem to have overlooked from the time when Kasselakis, who was at the time writing under the pen name Aristotelis Oikonomou, was expressing his supposedly “neoliberal views” in The National Herald in the United States. In 2012, even the social democratic proposals put forward by the then-leader of PASOK, Evangelos Venizelos, were labeled as “neoliberal,” and at times even “treacherous.” Skourletis, however, seems to have forgotten that in October 2015, he himself stated, “The achievements that [former conservative prime minister Antonis] Samaras celebrates today are responsible for over 1.5 million unemployed, widespread despair, suicides among thousands of heavily indebted borrowers, poverty, and destitution that will persist for decades” (19/10/2012).

It’s worth noting that Skourletis was not “just 24 years old” at that time; he was twice as old as Kasselakis was in 2012. However, it is unclear if he himself too was “in a relationship with a girl he wasn’t happy with.”

Nonetheless, the arrogance of the party, its leadership and the secretary was palpable: “We possess a political will that is lacking among the champions of the bailout programs. We also have credibility, sincerity, and the ability to rely on the people. The people are our most significant support,” Skourletis asserted (22/10/2012). This claim, however, was contradicted 11 years later with Kasselakis’ election, revealing that this group of leaders not only misunderstood the desires of Greek society but also the preferences of their own supporters.

The history of Greece’s so-called “radical” (God forbid!) Left (2004-2024) can be summarized by the idiom “easy come, easy go.” This political movement caused suffering to Greek society and caused harm to the Left. Let it now rest in peace…

Subscribe to our Newsletters

Enter your information below to receive our weekly newsletters with the latest insights, opinion pieces and current events straight to your inbox.

By signing up you are agreeing to our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.