Greeks are deep identity crisis. They do not know who they are. They do not know if they are still Greeks or not. This has to do with the fact that national and international politicians want to turn Greeks into something else. Right after the elections of 2009, PM George Papandreou promised to Greeks that he will turn them into Danes and the country into “Denmark of The South”. Exactly two years later, the Danish dream had disappeared and Greeks kept living like … Greeks. The same PM, George Papandreou warned in October 2011, that he will not allow Greeks turn into Indians. “We are not India and we will not become India” Papandreou told the Troika that demanded to lower the wages in the private sector. I remember at that time, Greeks were in dilemma whether they would have to wear sari and dance to Bollywood music.
A month later, George Papandreou was forced to give the country’s leadership to ex-banker Lucas Papademos. The new prime minister is a laconic man. He speaks to the Greeks only when he has to announce the salvation of the country through a new loan agreements. He always speaks in a cool but effectively dramatic tone. His seriousness and the metallic undertone in his voice make Greeks feel they’re about to be attacked by some Marsians forces or some other outer space Troikans.
Papademos never promised Greeks, he would turn them into something they are not. He just did it. By signing the new bailout, the new loan agreement and the austerity package, Papademos turned Greeks into Portuguese with one single signature. Their wages dropped by 22% , but are still higher than those of Portuguese, who earn only 566 euro. Greeks could have turned into Spaniards and earn 660 euro per month. But this option was only very short. Now, the perspective for the Greeks is to be turned into Bulgarians, should the wages in the private sector reduce further than today, as EU Commissioner Olli Rehn told a Finnish radio.
While Greeks try to learn to behave and earn like the Portuguese, Finance Minister Evangelos Venizelos dropped another bomb today. A bomb that pushed Greeks into a new and even deeper identity crisis. “It’s either the programme and the PSI or we turn into Albania or Moldavia” Venizelos told the Greek Parliament during a debate about the Greek Bond Swap. According to Greek media, Venizelos is the most promising candidate for the socialist PASOK leadership.
Now millions of Greeks wonder, whether it was ever on the agenda of the country’s psychosocial, cultural and economic identity to turn into Albanians or Moldavians…
PS Venizelos said “The one solution is the new programme and the PSI that will lead the country in another fiscal situation and will ease the Greeks from a debt burden of 110 billion euro. The other [solution] is a coordinated default within the euro which will mean stricter control. The third solution is the coordinated default that will mean empty shelves. The country will turn into the 1950’s … crush and poverty. There will be another political situation and correlation of forces and Greece will remind Albania or Moldavia”.