Reality vs speculation

The prime minister is expected to announce today or, at the latest, tomorrow whether he will call snap elections, make a Cabinet reshuffle or neither of the two. The government and the conservative party are both in a state of nervous collapse. The market remains in turmoil as no one wants to make any major decisions amid such an uncertain political climate. Concern is growing among the large business interests that have benefited from the status quo. An entire sphere that lives off the state and state satellites has become nervous because it has its own business agenda, as it were, and would not want to see itself out of business. The PASOK-affiliated part of this nomenclature is ready to step into the game. Of course, there are those who are concerned about the future of the country. They’re the people who do not zealously identify with one political party or party leader – and these have now fallen into despair. They see that the conservatives are incapable of solving the country’s structural problems, despite Costas Karamanlis’s good intentions and deep awareness of the situation. The same people question whether PASOK leader George Papandreou is on top of developments in the economy, security and public administration. They often talk about the prospect of a coalition government but they fear that there are no strong figures to pull off such a venture and that the necessary consensus to overcome the problems is not there. This is the backdrop against which the premier’s decisions are to be made. Ideally, some would want Karamanlis to see out the rest of his term with drive and determination, the characteristics of a political man who only cares about his legacy. But those things rarely happen in politics. One inevitably looks back at 2004, when Greece felt that it had the strength to meet any challenge. In contrast, this fall finds us in a state of melancholy about where we are going and whether we have begun an adventure with no end in sight. As always, life and politics will give their own unpredictable answers.