Growth, not Grexit

Greece's European partners need to understand that the country's recent election result was an explicit rejection of five years of policies that have failed to deliver the expected results. All parties need to stop talking about "game theory" and work together to put a feasible plan on the table.

ATHENS – The message from the Greek election must not be misunderstood. The fact that more than 36% of the country's voters cast their ballots for Syriza, a far-left political party, does not mean that Greece has suddenly become communist. Rather, the electorate was expressing its indignation, despair, and wounded national pride.

Greece's European partners need to understand that the election result was an explicit rejection of five years of policies that have failed to deliver the expected results. Moreover, the burden of the crisis was distributed in an unjust way: most of the pain has been borne by the poor. And, with the “troika" (the European Commission, the European Central Bank, and the International Monetary Fund) intervening in the most mundane decisions, a sense of bitterness and anger has permeated public opinion, even among staunch pro-Europeans.

It was this sense of lost national sovereignty that allowed Syriza to prevail. Humiliation was a force strong enough to unite leftists and nationalists, laying the groundwork for the creation of an unconventional post-election coalition between Syriza and the hard-right Independent Greeks party. So now, as talks over the country's debt burden and fiscal problems move forward, Greece's negotiating partners would do well to understand how Greeks will be viewing the process.

To continue reading, please log in or enter your email address.

To access our archive, please log in or register now and read two articles from our archive every month for free. For unlimited access to our archive, as well as to the unrivaled analysis of PS On Point, subscribe now.

required

By proceeding, you agree to our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy, which describes the personal data we collect and how we use it.

Log in

http://prosyn.org/FXkpXeT;

Cookies and Privacy

We use cookies to improve your experience on our website. To find out more, read our updated cookie policy and privacy policy.