OPINION

Promising political culture

Sometimes it’s good to put to one side all the problems that the country is facing and take time to consider how far it has come and how much it has changed. The fact that just yesterday we saw the country’s two biggest political rivals – the outgoing Costas Karamanlis and incoming Prime Minister George Papandreou – sit down together in a friendly and civilized manner to discuss at length the issues that the latter will have to face is an example of a new political culture that would have seemed inconceivable not too far in the past. Hopefully, any future meetings between the new prime minister and whoever is elected to head New Democracy will become a matter of habit and will not be limited to fruitless criticism or formal niceties. We also hope that Papandreou will draw a few valuable lessons from the experiences of the country’s former prime ministers, because the country needs the experience of its veteran politicians just as much as it needs a certain degree of consensus between the main parties when it comes to crucial policy issues.