An opportunity and a warning

George Papandreou’s re-election to the helm of PASOK is an opportunity and a warning: It is an opportunity for the opposition chief to prove that he can shoulder the burden of his institutional role to the benefit of his party and – more importantly – of the country. He has the opportunity to create a modern party. The September 16 defeat must have taught him that meaningless opposition does not bear fruit. The warning is that Greek voters have shown that they are going to be even more suspicious of anyone attempting to impose a system whereby political parties are used as a tool to further their own interests. PASOK has already been punished, in 2004, for being identified with such a system. The party now knows that independent politics and a «moral advantage» are critical in the choice of leaders. Those who embrace cronyism in exchange for public relations had better learn this lesson well, because the public will display judgment and has a strong immune system that protects the political organism.