OPINION

Boisterous politicians

The battle is heating up between the two main parties in an election campaign that has not even officially begun, according to the government which wants to clash with New Democracy while avoiding the impression that its actions have pre-election character. One cannot predict the behavior of the two front runners in the runup to the election. But if the verbal exchange between the two so far is a sign of what is to come when the campaign actually gets under way, then we are sure to witness a pitiful spectacle. For the time being, the verbal volleys being traded between the two big rivals have been little more than hot air. Statements aimed at stirring up passions, blatant generalities, colorful and scurrilous jibes are the basic ingredients of an encounter which has nothing to do with politics. It is to be hoped that this vacuous and dull show of bad taste will come to an end at some point. For the time being, the exchange between PASOK and New Democracy vindicates those political commentators and small leftist parties who argue that the main parties will try to make enough noise to disguise the fact that they are incapable of engaging in genuine political confrontation because their political and economic platform is almost identical, and in both cases acutely deficient. Despite Greece’s serious shortcomings, neither party has been able to present a new and clear-cut model of productivity for the country, so how can we expect citizens to be really interested in the ongoing encounter? Why should one pay heed to the clever jibes and rhetorical flourishes that come from the mouths of Socialist and conservative politicians who fail to grasp that their incessant moaning communicates nothing but hollowness?