Did the Greek No Confidence debate, much discussed last week, make any difference ? Is the Parliament at this stage relevant, or not ?
The relevance of any parliament depends on the democratic functioning (or non-functioning) of society. The figure out how healthy or sick our democracy is, we need to ask our politicians 5 questions:
1. What Power Have You Got?
2. Where Did You Get It From?
3. In Whose Interests Do You Exercise It?
4. To Whom Are You Accountable?
5. How Do We Get Rid Of You?
Sadly enough, the whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety by “competent” politicians in parliament) by menacing it with an endless litany of fears (the economy, public safety, health, wellbeing, education, immigration, emigration, etc) all of them at the same time imaginary and designed with an agenda in mind that is not in the interest of that very same populace.
Parliament, in a non-functioning democracy (which is unfortunately what we all have allowed ourselves to be bullied into) is merely an instrument for creating that endless litany of alarmist fears while it is simultaneously a measure of how successful the system is in keeping the populace alarmed.
Votes like the one the Greek parliament held over the weekend serve one purpose only. They provide the party leaders with a gauge to measure their own popularity and that of their party. They provide a platform for individual politicians to publicly brown-nose the party leader, and for the party leader to publicly admonish the individual politician in case he/she doesn’t brown-nose said party leader with sufficient enthusiasm.
Theodora Tzakri, the PASOK MP who voted with SYRIZA against the government is an example of this real functionality of parliament. After two years of helping the Greek government rubberstamp troika dictat, send to them by email, she suddenly developed a social conscience, claiming her voters put her in parliament to help make a difference. The cracks are getting wider in the Greek government coalition, and it is only a matter of time before Samaras joins the likes of Papandreou, Ahern and Blair on the international lecture circuit. I am convinced that this suddenly acquired social conscience by Tzakri has a lot more to do with trying to secure her re-election to the next parliament than it has to do with concern for the voters or Greece. I’ve always been weary of people wearing €500 worth of shoes or £700 worth of silk shirts claiming concern for the “impoverished” people…
Parliament has been reduced to a platform hijacked by society’s leading psychopaths to allow their public grand standing and help secure their personal wealth and power. It has become an instrument for the elite to force the populace in to paying the cost of keeping the elite in its self-proclaimed rightful position and maintain the wealth of the very same elite. Unless parliament is taken back by the people and returned to being an instrument for the people, it is and will indeed remain irrelevant in terms of democracy. In terms of being an elitist instrument of public oppression, parliaments everywhere are highly relevant.
Ephilant 18th November 2013