OPINION

Old Greece is bankrupt

The signs from international markets are worse than ominous; they are preamble to disaster. Our European peers, the Brussels Eurocrats, bankers, hedge funds, credit rating agencies and foreign press are all – each for its own (clear or disguised) reasons – launching attacks on our country. Greece, they proclaim, has gone bankrupt. Some expect to benefit from this predicament. Others fear it could affect their own economies. The word defeat is on everyone’s lips. However, instead of waiting for the markets to decide our fate, we must see what we can do for ourselves. We must stop lamenting past mistakes; we must stop feeling sorry for ourselves and we must stop slamming our governments and international speculators. No amount of coffee-shop talk will pull us out of this hole. Instead, it will dig us deeper into the ground. We, as a society, must make better use of time. We must recover from the shock, shake off the fear and find the thread that will help us to make our way through the intricacies of this labyrinth. This crisis, perhaps the worst crisis in Greece’s post-1974 period, is not just economic; it’s also a political and moral crisis. The model we had used to organize public life is no more. Seen in this way, the crisis presents a historic opportunity and a challenge: a challenge to finally demonstrate our much-hyped virtues, our quick decision-making, our risk-taking, our inventiveness, our adaptability to change and our militant spirit. If Greece is to overcome this mammoth challenge, if Greece is to overcome the flaws that brought our society to the brink of collapse, it will have to resort to this militant, survivor spirit. Our society needs to reinvent itself. The Greece of yesteryear is bankrupt.