Ama­teur pol­i­tics

Kathimerini English - - Front Page - BY COSTAS IORDANIDIS

Pop­u­lar Ortho­dox Rally (LAOS) leader Gior­gos Karatzaferis is “think­ing” about with­draw­ing his party from Par­lia­ment, be­cause this ac­tion will – in his opin­ion – slap the sys­tem back to life and may even prompt gen­eral elec­tions. Think­ing is such a great pas­time. And the para­dox ut­tered by Karatzaferis on a morn­ing tele­vi­sion show came as a wel­come break be­cause the truth is that the po­lit­i­cal at­mos­phere is re­ally bleak and the pub­lic is in a state of cata­to­nia. If with­draw­ing LAOS’s par­lia­men­tary rep­re­sen­ta­tives means that they will ab­stain from the par­lia­men­tary process, then we are look­ing at a clas- sic case of sinecurism, which, of course, does not lead to a purg­ing of the sys­tem. If, on the other hand, Karatzaferis’s ob­jec­tive is to con­vince the elected par­lia­men­tar­i­ans of his party to re­sign, along with the 12 of­fi­cials in lo­cal authorities who were elected as rep­re­sen­ta­tives by the party, then he will merely prompt a new round of elec­tions in those ar­eas and the po­si­tions will be filled by the party that holds the ma­jor­ity. There is no doubt that Karatzaferis al­ready knows all of this; you don’t need to be a con­sti­tu­tional ex­pert for that. The sim­ple fact is that on the first day of June, the head of LAOS de­cided to in­tro­duce ama­teur hour to the po­lit­i­cal de­bate. Well done. And now we can move full speed back to the days of po­lit­i­cal re­vues at the Green Park The­ater and the ar­tis­ti­cally de­light­ful Gior­gos Econo­mides. He gets his cast off the stage and sends his MPs to sit among the au­di­ence or, rather, among the “in­dig­nant” cit­i­zens in Syn­tagma Square. We look with some sym­pa­thy at Karatzaferis’s ef­fort to be in the po­lit­i­cal limelight. We also un­der­stand that the pass­ing of the so-called mem­o­ran­dum did not go down well with his fans, while sup­port­ing a new mem­o­ran­dum may strengthen a ten­dency among them to flee close to the cen­ter of the po­lit­i­cal spec­trum. Rightwing pop­ulism and lib­er­al­ism of a Bri­tish na­ture are not com­pat­i­ble con­cepts, so maybe this ex­plains why he came up with the “so­lu­tion” of with­draw­ing his party. At times of cri­sis and de­cline, ev­ery­one has an opin­ion, ev­ery­one has an idea and a so­lu­tion, and un­for­tu­nately we waste our time pay­ing them heed. We can ex­pect more in­ter­est­ing and other cre­ative pro­pos­als from Karatzaferis the deeper we wade into the cri­sis and into the sum­mer.

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