‘The Exhaustion of Greek Political System and a Society in Flames’

Photo : Mehran Khalili. A Greek man watches a burning bin next to Syntagma square in Athens as the protest wanes.

As the days go by, current chaotic situation in Greece is rendered more and more perplexed and difficulty approachable , in a level that one could state that perhaps this country  likes to put itself into a permanent submissive position  of  misery, as well as  that hypocrisy is a component  of  the last generations , somehow infused  into people’s DNA.

First of all, when it comes to citizens, they often declare that they are conscientious , hardworking,  inherently democratic people who honor their  ancient  legacies from Plato , Aristotle  and the other philosophers of Antiquity. What it’s hesitated to be said, is that Greeks are primarily responsible for the perpetual downfall accompanied by a boundless  international self- humiliation, for a corruption  so deep that  shouldn’t be isolated  in the  political field but  better  treated as a whole, since it touches every aspect of everyday personal and social life .

Greek citizens  are the ones  applauding ,  cheering and waving the flags of victory for the representatives  they voted, just after  the announcement of the elections’ result , literally opening  their hands greedily , so as to  grab any kind of position available, that would calm for a while their national anger and frustration. At the same time, they are the same people that the day after, burst into blasphemies and curses against their country’s useless politicians , hiding  in the drawer – for four years or something less – their flags of shame …

Even now that bankruptcy is a reality that we all experience, but no one dared to officially announce, Greek leaders remain free, with people’s endless tolerance, to arrange lives as they wish, by playing Russian roulette in the salons of Troika and then turn back, sometimes with bombastic nationalistic elations for the salvation of the country and other times with the tail between their legs.

Nevertheless, this is just the one side of the coin, as country’s political system seems equally unable to escape its voracious self. To start with, ruling party New Democracy (ND) appears as a misreplication of a center-right political force, which tries really hard to fight its conservative nature. Before winning the elections, ND intensively opposed memorandum and its harsh terms, accusing ruling party PASOK (Panhellenic Socialist Movement) for the betrayal of national sovereignty. Today, New Democracy ironically tries to coexist and maintain unity in a fragile governmental coalition with its greatest oppositional party, PASOK, and the alternative europeanist left-wing party of Dimokratiki Aristera (DIM.AR.), in order to guarantee the extension of the same measures taken.

In his recent interview for the leading Greek business magazine Ependytis, professor Anis Bajrektarevic rightfully remarked: “…Europe departed from the world of work…the EU has helplessly lost its political ‘left’…”  (Επενδυτης, 11 November 2012, page 13)

Indeed, leftist forces in Greece on the other hand, levitate between fragmentation and dissolution, achieving the absolute disorientation of the electorate. A noteworthy fact is the complete weakening of erstwhile socialist PASOK which has experienced a vast loss of popular support, approaching historically low, single-digit percentages, while its members abandon one by one, the sinking boat. Moving on to Greek Communist Party, it remains in hibernation, losing several rounds in the marathon of political parties for survival, essentially putting itself offseason with all its utopian visions – otherwise perfect to describe the structures of another Platonic ideal state -, as it persists to outdated proposals lacking realism and organized strategy. A situation that can’t help but magnify the fears for its future transformation into more or less, a ‘‘historical’’ party, that honorary occupies parliamentary seats, along with the ghosts of the past.

Regarding SY.RI.ZA (Radical Left Coalition Party) and DIM.AR. (Democratic Leftist Party), they appear undecided between the charming contact with the governmental power on the one hand and the will for a few revolutionary elavations against corruption, bipartisanship and despotism of external interventional powers (Troika) on the other. Unfortunately, none of them seems to offer anything special, as they limit their actions to a counterproductive presence, occasionally throwing a few drops of socialism in the cocktail of center-right powers, who have undertaken the mission of economic independence by beating the ’three forces of darkness “…

Within this maelstrom, people have completely lost the power to fight and the faith to envision a radical change, and what is left is drama, passive resistance and a piteous seeking, conscious or not, of a voluntary patronage, a refuge in the poisonous hugs of the far right forces (Golden Dawn) which flourish undisturbed, with the coverage of parliamentary legitimization and abolish the intended constitutional, moral, etc. laws, suggesting violence and revenge, or in other words, a return to the philosophy of the jungle.

As a matter of fact, the point is that beyond any financial support available and even if the debt ever becomes somehow manageable, the major problem remains in the core of Greek society, where all social layers oppose one another into a dangerous belligerent zone and every existing political doctrine seems so exhausted to place the country into a whole new perspective.

A state that appears for a long-standing period unable to fill its institutional and governmental gaps is inevitably exposed to any attempt of destabilization and manipulation by forces –  internal or not – which carefully await to benefit from its degradation. If we’d dare to scratch the surface, we’d clearly see that a country’s solidarity is a fragile concept that isn’t necessarily threatened by supranational institutions which aim to restrict its eras of national sovereignty. Social intolerance, indifference, extremism, and trivialization of democratic values are some places where the danger could be hidden. As they say, ‘‘Man’s worst enemy, is the man Himself’’…

Comments