The tired mo­tif of pub­lic ma­nip­u­la­tion

Kathimerini English - - Front Page - BY PANTELIS BOUKALAS

From the side of the op­po­si­tion, the line used most of­ten is that any­thing the gov­ern­ment does is an at­tempt at de­ceiv­ing and mis­lead­ing the people; this is a mo­tif that is pop­u­lar with all the op­po­si­tion par­ties. We are hear­ing the same old line re­peated again to­day in re­gard to the gov­ern­ment’s at­tempt to change the elec­toral law by in­tro­duc­ing a sys­tem akin to pro­por­tional representation. The idea, ap­par­ently, is to equal­ize the im­por­tance of ev­ery vote so that there are no “worth­less” or “gamechang­ing” bal­lots, as is the case when the first party gets a bonus of 50 seats in the House. We are see­ing par­ties that are oth­er­wise op­posed to each other (such as con­ser­va­tive New Democra- cy, the Greek Com­mu­nist Party, cen­ter-right To Po­tami and far-left Sail­ing for Free­dom) con­verg­ing – ir­re­spec­tive of their par­tic­u­lar style of rhetoric – on the same ac­cu­sa­tion: that by chang­ing the agenda, the gov­ern­ment is try­ing to mis­lead the people. This point of view has never found itself with­out its cham­pi­ons. There are al­ways po­lit­i­cal forces will­ing to adopt it even though it is deeply in­sult­ing to the very people it is pur­port­edly de­vised to de­fend. In truth, how much does a so­ci­ety re­spect any­one who claims that its be­liefs and feel­ings can be re­set by any tac­ti­cal move made by a gov­ern­ment and are not the in­de­pen­dent and well-founded prod­uct of day-to-day ex­pe­ri­ence?

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