Be­ware of the fallen idols

Kathimerini English - - Front Page - BY PAN­TELIS BOUKALAS

Akis Tsochat­zopou­los, a leg­endary fig­ure of the Greek so­cial­ist move­ment, a man who came very close to tak­ing over the party that gov­erned the coun­try for half of the time fol­low­ing the fall of the mil­i­tary dic­ta­tor­ship (the pe­riod known as “metapo­litefsi”) has been in prison for awhile now. Another lead­ing PA­SOK mem­ber, Yian­nos Pa­pan­to­niou, was re­cently handed a four-year sus­pended prison sen­tence. One of con­ser­va­tive New Democ­racy’s most prom­i­nent mem­bers, for­mer Thes­sa­loniki mayor and a great sprinter in his hey­day, Vas­silis Pa­pa­geor­gopou­los, is also be­hind bars. Gior­gos Karatzaferis, a cab­i­net mem­ber in Lu­cas Pa­pade­mos’s coali­tion gov­ern­ment and self-pro­claimed, “self-made” myth, is fac­ing felony charges. Another con­ser­va­tive lo­cal au­thor­ity of­fi­cial (and one-time con­tender for ND’s lead­er­ship as well as founder of the po­lit­i­cal party Pa­trida), Panayi­o­tis Pso­mi­adis was forced to re­sign from of­fice and handed a sus­pended prison term. Fi­nally, for quite dif­fer­ent rea­sons, the lead­er­ship of ul­tra-na­tion­al­ist Golden Dawn is be­ing held pend­ing trial over charges of or­ga­niz­ing and run­ning a crim­i­nal or­ga­ni­za­tion. While the afore­men­tioned are the most typ­i­cal cases mak­ing head­lines, plenty has been writ­ten with re­gard to less-known party cadres fac­ing charges over var­i­ous of­fenses. Surely the num- bers would be higher had the no­to­ri­ous “lists” been ex­am­ined more thor­oughly by the jus­tice sys­tem, whose lib­er­ties are still be­ing in­fringed by the po­lit­i­cal sys­tem. There would have been even more cases if it weren’t for 14 made-to-or­der amend­ments lead­ing to the ex­on­er­a­tion of cer­tain pub­lic ser­vants, ac­cord­ing to Pub­lic ad­min­is­tra­tion in­spec­tor Le­an­dros Rak­intzis. For the politi­cos who are al­ready be­hind bars or fac­ing the prospect of prison, the term “end of the metapo­litefsi” (a generic term sim­pli­fy­ing his­tory by slic­ing it up and plac­ing it in small boxes) has taken on a truly painful di­men­sion. Drunk with power and con­fi­dent that if caught with their hands dirty they would not be pun­ished, they lost the bat­tle against temp­ta­tion lurk­ing around even the most in­signif­i­cant po­si­tion of power. Here’s an in­ter­est­ing ex­per­i­ment: See how many videos you can find in which th­ese il­lus­tri­ous politi­cians are pompously spout­ing on about the home­land and the fam­ily, about sacrifice and con­tri­bu­tion. Splice them to­gether into a (very) long fea­ture film and show it to a multi-par­ti­san crowd. It is guar­an­teed that be­fore too long the screen­ing room will be shak­ing with laugh­ter, at least be­fore a si­lence set­tles when those do­ing the laugh­ing re­al­ize how gullible they were.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Greece

© PressReader. All rights reserved.