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June 17, 2012

Greek elections: Pro-austerity party wins, upstart Syriza party close behind

  • 29.7% the share of votes the Greek New Democracy party got in Sunday’s parliamentary election
  • 27% the share of votes the upstart anti-austerity Syriza party got on Sunday, besting even their May results source

» A coalition to keep austerity measures alive: The vote in Greece ensures that the two parties that are most likely to support austerity measures — New Democracy and the once-powerful PASOK, which will likely form a coalition with New Democracy to ensure a majority — will be able to keep those measures in place. That’s despite the measures’ widespread unpopularity and extremely high unemployment. The two parties together would hold 162 of the country’s 300 seats in parliament. That said, the elections, which took two tries to get right, were seen as a coming-out party for the far-left Syriza, which was only a minor party as recently as 2009. ”Very soon, the Left will be in power,” said Syriza’s leader, Alexis Tsipras, in a concession speech. ”We begin the fight again tomorrow.”

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22:45 // 1 year ago
May 6, 2012
In an ironic twist of history, ‘democracy’ collapses day after day in its cradle, only to reveal itself as a bloodthirsty cacophony of exploitation, suppression and inhumanity.
Al Jazeera English columnist Nikolas Kosmatopoulos • Offering up a particularly harsh take on the state of affairs in Greece, which is holding elections today. His article’s title? “If elections could change things, they’d be illegal.” A tough title for a tough sentiment, in which Kosmatopoulos says that the rising influence of the far right has made targets of the poor and of immigrants in the country. The country, which runs on a multi-party parliamentary system, could see fringe groups, such as the neo-Nazi Golden Dawn, get significant shares of the votes on Sunday. What happens to a country so battered by economic austerity that fringe groups gain significant power? Let’s hope we don’t find out.
10:33 // 1 year ago
February 12, 2012
They’re trying to lay the ground for it, trying to limit the contagion from it.
Center for European Reform Chief Economist Simon Tilford • Discussing the European Union’s struggles with Greece, which could end in default for Greece. If Greece defaults, which may be become more and more likely, the goal is to prevent the default from affecting other countries, to prevent global collapse. The issue is becoming a very difficult one to avoid for the country — to the point where members of each of the major Greek coalition parties have expelled members who did not vote yes on an important austerity measure Sunday. The measure, which needed to pass so the country could continue to get foreign loans, passed 199 to 74, with 27 absentions.
21:21 // 2 years ago