Wednesday April 1, 2015 Search
Weather | Athens
14o C
09o C
News
Business
Comment
Life
Sports
Community
Survival Guide
Greek Edition
The man who wasn't there

By Harry van Versendaal

It was a delicious irony. The two parties that have vowed to negotiate a better deal with the countryís foreign lenders failed to negotiate the simple matter of setting up a television debate.

True to form, New Democracy and SYRIZA exchanged accusations over who was to blame for the impasse. ND claimed it had agreed with SYRIZA on almost all the details for a Samaras vs Tsipras debate but that the leftists scuppered the deal by issuing two statements outlining their conditions for the discussions. SYRIZA, which appeared to want two separate debates, alleged that ND was simply looking for excuses to avoid a televised duel. However, it seems that, as with PASOK boss Evangelos Venizelos before the May 6 elections, Samaras once again got cold feet.

It may prove to be a wise strategy. The conservative leaderís spin doctors know that a debate between the 60-year-old Antonis Samaras and 37-year-old Alexis Tsipras has the makings of a disaster. Given the strict format of a discussion that leaves no room for substantive arguments that could expose sexy Alexiís fuzzy utopia, the conservative leaderís schoolmarmish moaning and finger-wagging is bound to be outshone by Tsiprasís youthful conviction and upbeat assuredness.

Inferior style and a dismal message are not the only things Samaras -- who has systematically shied away from the international media -- has against him. The fact is that he has consistently failed to deliver as the leader of one of Greeceís dominant parties. Samaras took over after NDís thrashing at the hand of the voters in 2009 and managed to drive the conservative party even lower in the May 6 snap polls that he called for. His awkward combination of stubborn posturing and endless flip-flopping has left the party directionless and politically damaged. Despite his opposition to the nationís first bailout agreement with the EU and the IMF, and despite the fact that history has largely vindicated his gloomy economic forecasts about the growth-killing capacity of austerity, ND has come to be identified with the memorandum as much as the PASOK socialists who initiated the deal.

Many analysts believe that ND would be better off with a new leader -- and would score a comfortable victory in this crucial election with someone more adept at its helm. But, like they say, you donít change horse in midstream, especially when you have no horse to replace it with.

[Kathimerini English Edition]

ekathimerini.com , Wednesday June 6, 2012 (13:46)  
Amateur antics or overstepping the mark?
A pointless debate
Releasing migrants from detention centers not enough, says UN rights watchdog
Tsipras needs rupture with far-left, not Brussels
Finance Ministry officials to discuss talks progress as EU pushes for action
After several days of talks between representatives of Greeceís government and its creditors in Brussels on a proposed list of economic reforms, eurozone finance ministry officials are to di...
Trial of suspects in Salamina torture case starts
The trial of four men accused of torturing an Egyptian bakery worker on the island of Salamina in the summer of 2012 is to resume on April 30 after the victim, Walid Talb, and several witnes...
Inside News
Business sentiment in decline
Business sentiment and consumer confidence were in decline in March, according to a monthly survey conducted by the Foundation for Economic and Industrial Research (IOBE) and published on Tu...
Ministry headache over T-bills
The Finance Ministry is trying to find a solution to cover treasury bills to be issued next Wednesday, while the payment of the next tranche to the International Monetary Fund the following ...
Inside Business
BASKETBALL
AEK could get a wild card to the Euroleague
AEK shows capable of climbing as high as third in the Basket League, as its 16-point home win over third-placed Aris on Sunday confirmed it can challenge both Aris and PAOK to the first spot...
SOCCER
Cyprus soccer eyes reunion after 60-year divorce
Turkish Cypriot soccer officials on Monday vowed to press ahead with attempts to reunite with the Cyprus Football Association, (CFA), triggering a political storm on the ethnically-split isl...
Inside Sports
SPONSORED LINK: FinanzNachrichten.de
SPONSORED LINK: BestPrice.gr
†RECENT NEWS
1. AEK could get a wild card to the Euroleague
2. Business sentiment in decline
3. Ministry headache over T-bills
4. Lafazanis reaches preliminary energy package deal in Russia
5. Bank recap cash canít be used for other purposes
6. EIB said to have frozen funding
more news
Today
This Week
1. Amateur antics or overstepping the mark?
2. Parliamentary speaker prompts ND walkout, anger from PASOK, Potami
3. Investment guru Mark Mobius rules out Grexit, advises sell-offs
4. Greece, EU/IMF lenders end round of technical talks without deal
5. A pointless debate
6. Greek government proposes measures worth 3.7 bln
Today
This Week
1. Next Monday is D-Day for state funds
2. Eurogroup unlikely to be held soon to discuss Greek reforms
3. Moscow expects progress from Tsipras visit
4. Some more equal than others
5. Greece to present reforms by Monday, says gov't spokesman [Update]
6. Greece optimistic on deal with euro area next week
†††Find us ...
††... on
Twitter
†† ††... on Facebook ††
About us  |  Subscriptions  |  Advertising  |  Contact us  |  Athens Plus  |  RSS  |   
Copyright © 2015, H KAΘHMEPINH All Rights Reserved.