Too Many Cooks In Greek Political Kitchen

In this To Vima illustration of Greece's dilemma with international lenders, IMF chief Poul Thomsen is the chef cooking up the government

Antonis H. Diamataris – Publisher/Editor of The National Herald

In crisis-ridden Athens, the political crisis is flaring up. The conclusions are obvious. The evidence is visible to the naked eye and cannot be clearer. It’s all over the front pages of the capital’s Sunday newspapers.

The newspaper To Vima’s headline, broad and thick, almost from nowhere from those in the dark, raises the issue of the formation of a new government.

The subhead reads: The Pressure from the Europeans Will Lead to “Developments.” The main headline is: Political Kitchen – with Chef Troika, play on words from a well-known film. Could the paper’s intentions have been any more revealing?

To Ethnos, on the other hand wrote high up on page 1: Costas Karamanlis: There Are No Scripts That Do Not Include Samaras. It is known that the former Prime Minister does not comment in public about political issues.

But to the extent that the article represents his views – conveyed through his aides – it is clear that he is slamming the brakes on any possible efforts of replacing Samaras or another political solution that excludes the Premier.

The major opposition party Coalition of the Radical Left (SYRIZA) leader Alexi Tsipras, in a momentous interview with Avgi, said among other important – and disturbing – comments: “If votes to end the destructive course of the country … will have the broad acceptance of the popular base, their local communities and the citizens who elected them … are fed up.”

In other words, overthrow the government and come with me.

Also, New Democracy MP Dora Bakoyannis recently suggested that Samaras invite the Democratic Left (DIMAR) back into the coalition it left in a dispute over the firing of workers at the former state broadcaster ERT because the government’s four-vote majority – 154 votes out of 300 – is too weak to make decisions necessary for the country.

So then, political and economic alliances are changing. But if the thinking in Athens is all about the redistribution of the political and economic pie, the rest of us are anxious about how and when the country will emerge from the crisis.

This is the basic question and concern on the mind of every Greek, an answer to which was given in an interview to the newspaper Real News by Administrative Development Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis.

“We need to accelerate the structural changes that will yield financial benefits. For example, simplifying administrative procedures for business is something that will contribute to the growth potential of the country,” he said.

That is the substance of what must be done to arrive at an exit, and it makes one weary to keep repeating it.