Dimitris Rapidis

Sometimes it is much more efficient and didactic to look over the general perceptions of the public regarding a certain policy in order to come to some conclusions. The case of Greece after 4 yours of an unprecedent economic crisis is one of a kind.

This last period the Greek society seems to have lost its courage and hope for any perspective change. A change that would ameliorate conditions and provide an alternative for a better future, less taxes, more jobs, more security, more growth, and a sustainable welfare state. It goes without saying that the fighting spirit against austerity politics has loosened up dramatically and there are many reasons to explain this shift. Actually there is a number of deadlocks.

The first is the role mainstream media play in an incomparably consistent manner. This role aims at completely neutralizing the hardship of the public by emitting an image of dispair that cannot change to the better. By choosing to focusing on the same problems of austerity politics in Greece and Europe, with no reference to global news and hopeful assessments, mainstream media achieve to establish a rather monolithic and biased image of what is going on in this country. The outcome of this policy is the enhancement of what I call “public digestive ability” against the austerity measures and, finally, the establishment of a negative and desperate perception of social fate.

The second deadlock stems from the role of political parties, both in their strategy in the Parliament, as well as in the way MPs decide to express themselves in the media. All parliamentary parties offer no convincing solution to the management of the crisis, whereas there is a growing number of MPs that decides to abstain from the existing and restrictive politics, create new political formations, but without offering any viable alternative, just for putting away the blame of being active part of the mess austerity politics have created. This deadlock leads people to get even more puzzled on what they really want from the political parties and the expectations they have from Greek politics.

The third deadlock is the absence of a pioneering elite from the field of arts and culture that could ignite spirit and faith for a change in the current political landscape. This taken, Greece also lacks of an invigorating youth that could lead the way towards a more hopeful future. But this latter demands a fundamental shift: that young people start evaluating and defining their role in modern societies as the locomotiv engine of prosperity. As long as young people remain behind political developments and decide to abstain from the public discourse, nothing will change.

And this is the major assessment that all media and political parties have already taken for granted: that no youth will revolt, nor seek for alternatives, for a better and more equal professional and personal future.

Therefore, the most imminent danger -that turns up to take a permanent dimension- is that the public is put into quarantine until further notice. Which means that political developments are shaped without public participation. This is definitely what we call authoritarianism, not democracy, and certainly not evolution and freedom. But on the other hand, this quarantine is what mainstream politics have achieved to bring to this country: To design and impose the future of Greek citizens without the citizens being part of this design.

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