Popular indifference

The main opposition PASOK party’s call for a censure vote against Economy Minister Giorgos Alogoskoufis and the government’s subsequent call for a vote of confidence provoked the same public indifference – chiefly because the result was a foregone conclusion. When the outcome of such a showdown is a given, it is best for it not to attract too much attention. The ratification of the European Constitution is an example: The Greek Parliament’s decision was known from the outset and the public’s indifference was all but total, while in France, whose Parliament has a similar composition, the announcement of a referendum paved the way for a «no» vote and thus stirred public interest. In the Greek vote of confidence, one could not only predict the outcome but also the number of votes, and there was no public involvement whatsoever. There was also no question of Alogoskoufis losing his post or the government falling from power. The only other possible development could have been a governmental call for early elections – a move that would have further alienated the public, as the only reason for New Democracy to do so would be to re-establish its grip on power… However, the most depressing aspect of the whole affair is the overwhelming indifference of the public, uninspired by the sloganeering of Greek political debate…

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