OPINION

Political formalism

PASOK representatives have recently been invoking and defending the «democratic faction» (parataxi, or something larger than a party) and the «progressive faction,» and suggesting that the Left belongs to both. I have even heard PASOK’s new leader referring to a «faction» – without being any more specific – something I hope he will avoid in future. I am sure you have asked yourself what these terms mean and whether they have any relation to our current political reality… If the terms hark back to the 1950s and ’60s or even further, we must remember that the man regarded as the founder of the «democratic faction» is the late Prime Minister George Papandreou – one of the proponents of persecution against the Left, a dyed-in-the-wool anti-communist. If today’s descendants of this «democratic faction» believe that history justified anti-communism as an excuse for persecution of the Left, then they should declare so. Foreign Minister George Papandreou’s visit earlier this week to the village of his grandfather constituted a tribute to a politician who admitted to «throwing the Left in the trash» and saving Greece from communism… The «democratic faction» is a conventional lie and a fundamental aspect of the political formalism being cultivated by PASOK. If Papandreou wants to herald a new approach for his party, he must first abolish hollow political jargon and misleading slogans.