The situation in Greece today could be described as the perfect storm. At the moment, there is an eerie calm and dread. The newspapers, blogs and media outlets in general have run out of things to write. They are just repeating themselves. The general mainstream push is to discredit Tsipras (he’s young, he’s crass, he’s untested, inexperienced, a populist, a demagogue– they shout ). Their goal to help guide voters toward more established parties that have a clearer roadmap for Greece to stay in the euro and for reforms to continue.
Speaking with voters, however, I think it is safe to say that the vote will be very close to, until the bitter end. The reason is that Greeks – above all else- desire two things: first to see the old political guard out and done with, and second to take the easier road of hope. They know in their heart of hearts that Tsipras may prove to be a detriment and they even admit in an exarcerbated tone that they simply “don’t care.” Some say that they have nothing to lose. Or they say, they have everything to lose but Greece must break out of this stalemate and rise again from its ashes.
There is a sense of doom and secret hope, that perhaps some middle ground will be found;that Greeks won’t have to make the changes they are so resistant to.
One thing that I think is offensive and will end up backfiring on the political establishment, especially of New Democracy since PASOK is just trying to stay afloat, is the tone of condescension that permeates all that they say, all that they do.
Even if you press the mute button on your TV, just by looking at the faces, all that one can read is the cynicism, the sense of entitlement coupled with a desperate effort to hold on to their own power, in the name of the people of course. It seems to me that it’s enough to make the average voter become all the more infuriated.
The election result in the end will largely depend on the turn-out. If the young, and middle-aged go to vote, then SYRIZA may win first place on June 17th. They are the ones out of work, who have loans and young families and are the most disgruntled with the situation.
A word to the analysts from abroad who are predicting the demise of the euro, Greece’s place in the euro and Europe in general. Don’t be so quick to make predictions if you don’t understand the politics on the ground in Europe and in Greece. Whatever the final outcome, it is not going to be fast, it is not going to be clean. Both the road to recovery and the road to hell are long and arduous winding paths and cannot be summarized in a black and white analysis.