OPINION

Clear mandate

Victors of general elections usually claim that the voters made the wise decision. And the losing side generally maintains (albeit privately) that the people have been misled, sometimes even suggesting that voters have virtually lost their minds. But obviously this level of protest is due to the losing side’s disappointment. The most plausible explanation is that people vote on the basis of their instincts. Nobody can be sure if their choice at the time is the wisest, but it is certainly clear, at least at the beginning. Whether it turns out to be positive or negative in the long term is another matter. And it is from this point of view that New Democracy’s victory earlier this month – especially its scope – should be examined. Voters wanted clear solutions, so they gave a clear mandate to the country’s new ruling party. At the same time, they sent an unambiguous message to the party which had ruled Greece for the past 11 years: that it should take advantage of its new role as the official opposition party and let the land lie fallow, so that it can renew itself and gain valuable experience. The main reason behind PASOK’s electoral defeat was the arrogance that the former ruling party displayed and its apparent conviction that it had the right to make ad hoc decisions affecting the creation of wealth in this country and the subsequent distribution of this wealth.