OPINION

Sinking deep into the morass

The new year is looking rather listless and Greeks like dejected skeptics, lacking optimism, suspicious toward the state and its institutions, afraid of the future and international challenges. They fear the confrontation between the West and Islam, their own household poverty, the destruction of the environment, the consequences of globalization and the international financial crisis. They are beginning to see their country and society as small and themselves as weak and unprotected in the open globalized landscape. They feel exposed to the winds of change and know they are out there, unprepared and ill-equipped, without a plan and virtually without leadership. The ship is on automatic pilot, going around in a circle. Going nowhere. Without productive drive, effective administration, education, innovation, a business culture or community services and without faith in its strength, Greece is slowly sinking, ritualistically, smugly, into its own morass. We can’t pinpoint the forces dragging the country down, for there are simply too many. Political dynasties whose only thought is their own survival, even at the expense of society. Corrupt administrations, made up of people with a flexible conscience and a poor performance. The voracious elite of businessmen who get rich from the state but give nothing back to society. The ruins of the education system, undermining present and future prospects. And ultimately, the tarnished, ersatz democracy of everyday life; a democracy built around lazy, jealous, self-satisfied, cowardly citizens with leaders to match. Citizens and leaders who fear the future and worry about the present, yet fear change, snub innovation, loathe sacrifice and shun risk. Citizens and leaders without vision, faith and love. The only truth is fear and it is eating away at us. We are the morass.