Above the law

What do the masked anarchists, the coastline nightclub owners and the Markopoulo quarry firms have in common? They all hold themselves above the law. And it’s not just them. It’s easy to see that in Greece big shots violate the law wherever and whenever they see fit. But it’s hard to see why the government could not, or did not want to, do something about that. And let’s put aside the big problems. After months of parliamentary committee investigations into PASOK’s ammunition procurements, the case came to an ignominious close by some unknown lawyers in Switzerland. Then came the fuss over the basic shareholder law and the government’s plans collapsed after blatant errors in Brussels that also took a toll on the conservatives’ anti-corruption drive. Nevertheless, the grandstanding speeches and soundbite quotes are one thing. But the chaos and impunity surrounding the seaside nightclubs of Athens are quite another. How can five, 10 or 30 individuals break the law at the expense of the rest of society? How does the premier feel about that? Doesn’t he see any need to say «enough is enough» and bring this to an end? A couple of measures would be enough to change things and make voters feel like true citizens again. How can a quarry firm afford to shun the courts, laws, the authorities and society at large? How can a bunch of self-styled anarchists go on the rampage in the streets of Athens, making a mockery of the police and the state? The problem is that even state-run channels provide these active fascists with an ideological mantle, dubbing them «anti-establishment fighters.» There’s been no shortage of big words. Political discourse is completely out of touch with reality. With so many politicians, public surveys and spin doctors can’t they simply see that the country needs immediate, tangible changes that will produce concrete results?

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