OPINION

The final straight

It is worth examining the course of the final straight before the electoral showdown. While Prime Minister Costas Simitis warns of the risk of a «right-wing comeback» (in tones which do not suit him at all) which will reverse and annihilate everything that his «democratic-reformist» government has achieved, opposition New Democracy leader Costas Karamanlis has been emphatically insisting that «ND is not a right-wing party» (to the great chagrin of certain established party members and newcomers alike) but rather a party of the «center-right» (whatever that might mean) which is prepared to replace the «tired» PASOK and to «move mountains» – without, however, indicating exactly what developments we can expect and in which sectors, perhaps because he believes in the seductiveness of surprise tactics. We cannot know what proposals the spin doctors and policy advisers of the two main political parties have made to their respective leaders but, judging from the everyday conversations we all have with acquaintances, it appears that the average citizen cares very little about the would-be ideological self-determination of those who aspire to govern us, and is more interested in determining who will be more capable of solving problems and building the foundations for a better future.