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The Greek blaming game The Greek blaming game
by Thanos Kalamidas
2010-05-19 07:34:21
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Let’s talk about football! I would love to write that and spend the next hour talking about the Europe league, the last games and my favourite football persona José Mourinho but …but the telephone rings and it is some friends from Greece. The situation is bad, is really bad and there are no excuses. Instead there is a heavy blaming game that seems to include everybody.

A few hours before the financial ministry had given to the public a list of names, doctors’ names that hadn’t paid their tax or they had lied about their income especially after comparing what they declared with their bank accounts. My friends thought that I sounded a little reserved while they were angry and when I asked what they were going to do with those people they reacted ever more angrily like leaving abroad made me forget or don’t understanding the drama of the people. Trying to explain that announcing these names it was a mistake because it was like the government was leading those people to a public lynch without bothering to find out what really was going on.

Then I tried to explain that that there is a list with fifty names doesn’t mean anything, it represents a small percent of all the doctors who are practising in Greece and is not part of the citizen’s job description to find them and punishment neither the states’ job description to pillory the tax dodgers.

Then I talked with another friend who described a very sad scene from the centre of Athens. A former minister from the last government went to a café for a coffee where he was verbally attacked from the by passers and a woman who was stopped by a security guard tried to though something at him. The same time the former PM, from what I have read doesn’t even dare to appear anywhere in public. I tried to say something but I had to deal once more with one more of my friends’ anger. I must mention here that my friends are not in their twenties, thirties even forties. They are grown men, a couple of them already grandfathers.

Then I started watching the news from the internet. A series of experts analyzing the doom’s timing, disagreeing if it will come this year, next year or in five years. In the meantime a junior minister was forced to resign upon a financial scandal that involved her husband. Of course everybody forgot to mention that there was a case still going on in the courts without any final decision for or against the man who by the way is very known Greek singer. But it was good them for the media and who cares if there wasn’t something final about it to make it a scandal. And a well known “societe” made a porno film that sold out in one night! By the way it must be this generation gap because I never understood what these “societe” doing and what are their qualifications and education; there was nothing like that when I went to college and I really feel wasted to collect degrees that decorate a paper box somewhere in my study.

The government blames the last government which blames the government before and it goes all the way to the beginnings of the 19th century where all of them blame the Ottoman Empire. But still this is not the worst part. The worst part came when the experts on television, the experts from the EU and the experts from the International Monetary Fund blamed the people. When everybody pointed their fat fingers at the people who have been strangling to survive. The people who get 700 and 800 Euros a month. And they are the ones who have to pay. They are the ones who will see their lives decreasing in a worst level than their salaries. Because the doctors will pay their tax and their penalties and they will continue to charge their usual fees. The MPs will continue promising a better future while looking to find their campaigns, the “societes” will continue whatever it is what they are doing and the resigned minister will plan her next campaign.  But the people will just get angry and angrier and angrier and what worries me is the day they will be really angry and they will decide that the time has come and throwing a glass of water is not enough. And this is a domino effect we should worry about, not the one with the stock markets and the budgets; and this will be a domino effect that will leave only ruins behind.


     
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Anastasios2010-05-19 13:30:26
The ultimate "burden" on piloting a nation towards failure, mediocrity or sucess is on the politicians..You can not ask a people to make serious adjustments if you are not a serious person yourself. This has been my main concern. I have minimal if not absolutely no faith in the capabilities and stamina of the politicians. I have little faith in their integrity. For years. I see the dreams of generations, one after the other to be completely ridiculed by comical, unpatriotic characters who, in the mean time become filthy rich. What can a country hope for when a primadona named Gerekou becomes a deputy minister of a department so crucial to the revenues of Greece? What vision should we expect from political parties which add to their party lists names such as Tournas, Fasoulas, Patoulidou, Anousaki, Kourkoula and the rest? What can a singer do for my country's future? Having said all this I do believe there is hope.


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