Greek people suffered the worst consequences of the European Central Bank’s bailout: severe cuts to social services including healthcare, education and pension. In addition, Greece continues to have one of the highest unemployment rates.
However the people of Greece, exhausted by half a decade of neo-liberal ransack of their economy are hoping to use the parliament to fight back against the rolling cuts and austerity measures. The coalition of the radical left, known as Syriza, led by Alexis Tsipras are working to win the next early election that must be called according to the Greek constitution.
The Greek economy is heavily weaved into the neo-liberal agenda of Europe that has generated far and wide poverty and misery for the Europeans. However, the Syriza party is attempting to become the counter balance to the waves of austerity to favour the working people and the have-nots. Specifically, the party’s leader, Alexis Tsipras, is planning to renegotiate Greece’s loans with the European creditors.
The Syriza is targeting the top 10% income earners in the country that includes some politicians and elites to pay for the changes he wishes to make in Greece. Alexis Tsipras’ plan is essentially redistributing the wealth in Greece in order to save the social services and reverse some of the privatization that has taken place. The changes may also include, in addition to the reversing the privatizations, increases in salaries and pensions and repealing bailout laws liberalising the markets.
In order for Syriza or any other self- proclaiming grassroots and workers’ party to be successful against the strong neo-liberal right-wing statuesque, it has to have extraordinary support from the people to defend it during inevitable war with big business. To defend workers’ rights and wages as they are is one battle, but to reverse the theft of banks through rebuying privatized public institutions will be a herculean feat. The European central bank as well all other European nations subservient to the ECB will do everything in their power not to allow Syriza to be successful.
The people of Greece need a worker’s party that stays loyal to its roots and goes the important extra mile of eventually removing all of Capitalism exploitative tentacles in the country. No matter how many institutions are publicly owned, a Greece that rises and falls with the ebbs and flows of the European and global markets, is not free! As long as any capitalist institution exists in Greece, it will always be in danger of losing all that it has fought so hard to gain: this is the extra mile that any self-proclaiming working-class party needs to go.