Greece

Alexis Tsipras Stepped Down as Greek Prime Minister. Long Live Alexis Tsipras.

His Syriza party captured a plurality of the vote in a snap election yesterday.

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Alexis Tsipras
Wikimedia

One month ago yesterday, Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras made the shocking decision to resign his post and call for snap elections.

It turned out not to be as dramatic a turn as it seemed. The extremely popular head of the far-left Syriza party would throw his name back into the ring in a bid to re-win his old seat. And that's exactly what he's done. From The Guardian:

With 99.5% of votes counted, Syriza had claimed 35.5% of the vote, easily seeing off the main conservative challengers New Democracy on 28.1%. 

The interior ministry said that gave Syriza 145 seats in the 300-seat parliament, just four fewer than when Tsipras first stormed to power early this year.

Syriza officials said that although the party had not gained an outright majority, they would immediately set about forming a stable government, with a view to keeping the crisis-plagued country, bailed out for a third time this summer, on track with its European lenders.

Is it surprising that Greek voters ultimately had Tsipras' back? Only sort of. Twice this year before yesterday the people rallied to the polls to support him—first in January when he was initially elected and again in July after he called a referendum over whether or not to agree to the demands of Greece's creditors.

But of course, in the latter election, the public voted against the austerity package being offered by the international community—and then Tsipras agreed to it anyway. (More accurately, he agreed to an even stricter program of reforms than the one the voters said no to.) So some onlookers wondered if the electorate would punish him at the polls for his reversal, perhaps turning to the conservative New Democracy party instead. 

Apparently not.

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  1. I wonder what it would be like to live in a country where the electorate voted based on the cheap words and empty promises that fell out of politicians’ mouths rather than the established records of their tenure in office.

    1. I know what you mean. It would be difficult to live somewhere you’re governed by those who got elected because voters wanted the free entitlements that can’t possibly be sustained and because- HEY, WAIT A MINUTE…

      1. Some of us voted for Obama because he promised to end military operations in Iraq and repair the economic disaster of 2007-08.

        MISSION ACCOMPLISHED! And he didn’t wear a codpiece whilst giving a dopey speech on an aircraft carrier!

        1. Some of us voted for Obama because he promised to end military operations in Iraq and repair the economic disaster of 2007-08.

          MISSION ACCOMPLISHED! And he didn’t wear a codpiece whilst giving a dopey speech on an aircraft carrier! we’re idiots.

          ftfy

          1. I always suspected that you were beholden to Big Codpiece.

          2. Jesus Christ on a crutch!

            If you guys want to drive the ant away, why do you guys keeping feeding sugar to it?!?

            You guys realize that it doesn’t comprehend any of the concepts it deposits in its word salad, right? You guys realize that your rebuttals are utterly meaningless to it, right? You guys realize that it is merely harvesting your words like an ant collecting an aphids secretions, right?

            1. Translation:

              HE’S EXCAPING THE GOP PLANTATION! GIT HIM!

            2. On the off chance that someone new here takes him seriously, it is sometimes important to rebut his arguments.

              1. OK. I just want to make sure that I get this straight.

                You interact with it, encouraging it to produce more inane babble, so that when total strangers come to Reason, they don’t think it brilliant?

                If you guys didn’t interact with it, it would starve and wander away to someplace like Jezebel or Breitbart or youtube and harvest comments there. Then there would be no inane babble here to ‘confuse’ the idiots.

                I mean I find other people’s futile tilting at windmills as funny as the next guy, but simple Christian charity requires me to remind you that you guys are doing something pretty insane!

        2. Palin’s Buttplug:

          Some of us voted for Obama because he promised to end military operations in Iraq and repair the economic disaster of 2007-08.

          MISSION ACCOMPLISHED!

          American-led intervention in Iraq (2014?present)

          1. Oh, we always meddle.

            It’s those $1 trillion nation-building projects I despise the most.

            1. I get it. No true military operation costs less than $1 trillion.

              1. Look, if we’re insist on taking out terrorist thug dictators I prefer how Obama killed Qadaffi/bin Laden over Dubya’s Saddam model.

                Over $1 trillion difference.

                1. At least its the Euros and MENA who are reaping the harvest of the Arab Spring, right, Plugs? Nothing says “successful foreign policy” like millions of refugees and a truly historic cleansing of some of the oldest Christian communities on Earth.

                  Obama has so totally repaired the damage of the Great Recession that disability claims are up, welfare is up, workplace participation is down, and the average paycheck is smaller adjusted for inflation than it has been in a generation or more.

                2. In other words, saying that Obama ended “military operations in Iraq” is completely wrong.

                  I told you: get it.

                  Get over it.

                  Let it go.

                3. Look, if we’re insist on taking out terrorist thug dictators I prefer how Obama killed Qadaffi/bin Laden over Dubya’s Saddam model.

                  Saddam was hung. Gaddafi was anally raped with a bayonet and eventually shot repeatedly. Both countries are awash in Islamists. There is no success story here, unless you’re a person whose life force is sustained by ingesting large amounts Democrat jizz.

                  1. Gaddafi was anally raped with a bayonet and eventually shot repeatedly.

                    It was just a protest over a youtube video.

                    1. What difference at this point does it make?

                    2. Well, let us celebrate the great accomplishment of the Obama and his evil little today in the double wide pantsuit, cankles, for destabilizing Libya and Syria and the ensuing humanitarian crisis affectionately named ‘Arab Spring’. Nice job, idiots everywhere praise this most wondrous of accomplishments. Europe thanks you for the great increase in ‘tourism’.

                    3. Yes, because wrecking Iraq and spreading democracy worked so well 2003-2009.

                    4. Boooshhhh did it too!

                      Oh, look, it’s a one trick pony. You can actually predict with 100% certainty, the idiocy of it’s braindead retort. It’s not sentient. A pre-programmed idiot bot.

                    5. *hands PB a bucket of Democratic ejaculate and a straw*

        3. repair the economic disaster of 2007-08

          Kicking the can down the road != “repair”.

        4. You know, i’m starting to warm to the notion that shrike is a long-con parody account.

          1. No, I am a classic liberal who votes for the lesser of two evils or gridlock. I don’t want one party control like in 2003-2007 of like back in the mid 60s.

            1. No, I am a classic liberal…

              *SNORT* *COUGH* *CHOKE*

            2. I am a classic liberal

              Do you know what words mean?

              1. It doesn’t. That’s the shame of it. You guys are wasting irreplaceable hours of your lives interacting with it.

                1. The point is that some poor fool may come along and see his unrebutted comments as triumphs. We can’t have that.

              2. I use Hayek as a model for classical liberalism and I agree with him 99% of the time.

                Hayek also had no respect for you conservatives (as I don’t).

                1. I hate to break it to you, but Salma Hayek is an actress, not an economist. Friedrich Hayek is the economist.

            3. Voting for the lesser of two evils is still voting for evil.

        5. He was wearing a flight suit moron. The straps have to go around the legs.

  2. The Greeks have been demonstrating how democracy sucks for 2500 years.

    1. 35% of the vote equals MANDATE FROM THE PEOPLE!!1!1!1!1!

  3. So some onlookers wondered if the electorate would punish him at the polls for his reversal, perhaps turning to the conservative New Democracy party instead.

    Why would they possibly do that? If you’re angry that the free shit party has agreed to slightly less free shit, it doesn’t make sense to switch your vote to the slightly even less free shit party.

  4. How much do we spend on our military bases in Germany and elsewhere in Europe, and to what extent does that make German/European bailouts to Greece possible?

  5. What’s that definition for insanity again??

    Trying the same thing over and over and hoping that this time it’ll be different?

    1. Bad things would happen even for France and Germany if, say, Italy and Spain were forced to leave, but the idea that Germany, et. al., will be able to push through major reforms once the crisis is over has serious flaws.

      If you can’t get something done amid a crisis, how will you get it done without one?

      Refusing to bail out Greece probably would have forced the issue. It’s probably a good example of short term thinking keeping people from doing what they should over the long term.

      1. Their long term goal is an EU superstate. Nothing can be allowed to put that at risk, which is why they’re so desperate to keep Greece from leaving the Eurozone.

        The Greeks, for their part, have been expecting the Brussels Class to capitulate and take the allegedly less bad option of letting the Greeks stay in the Euro without structural reforms.

        1. You know who else’s goal was a European superstate?

          1. UEFA?

              1. They certainly are stretching the definition of Europe these days. Kazahkstan? Israel?!

        2. Their long term goal is an EU superstate.

          And some of the lesser countries are finally starting to catch on that choosing to be ruled from Germany or France maybe wasn’t such a hot idea.

          1. You know who else didn’t want to be ruled by Germany or France?

            1. Parts of Africa?

        3. “Their long term goal is an EU superstate.”

          Their long term goal was reunification. France gets to set its own budget while Germany pays the price with its currency was part of the price of France’s acquiescence to German reunification.

          A situation in which one country bears the cost of other countries’ budgets putting pressure on the currency disproportionately is unsustainable.

          They’re not going to be able to address that problem once the crisis is over. There will never be a time when the rest of the European Union’s parliaments are so flush with cash that they decide to slash their budgets or give veto power to Berlin on their budgets.

          The best chance for fixing that problem is that a crisis gets so bad that the other governments in the EU agree to reform. I think Germany has been pushing their leverage in the wrong direction. The question shouldn’t have been whether Greece would make the budget cuts necessary to qualify for a bailout. The question should have been whether Spain, Italy, France, et. al, would make the reforms at the EU level necessary to save the EU. Germany had all sorts of leverage. Merkel squandered it.

  6. I’m just happy to know another nation has an electorate as stupid and as short-sighted as our own. Thanks Greece!

  7. Greece, the birthplace of democracy, now the leader in idiocracy. Nice.

    1. “Your shit’s all ‘tarded and you talk like a fag!”

        1. Scottish Cave Rescue Organisation?

  8. Alexis Tsipras? Alexis Texas could do a better job.

    1. They thought they voting for Alex Trebek.

  9. Huh, these Greeks approach politics exactly the same way Seattle does.

    1. I think Seattle has a little catching up to do. The Greeks elected this commie because he told them they wouldn’t have to deal with any of this austerity stuff and that the free stuff could continue forever. Then he made a deal with the Euros who he promised to save them from and now they are living under all sorts of draconian capital controls. So what do they do? They vote this guy back in! True leftist sheep. You can never get a true leftist to stop believing, it’s not possible.

      1. I think Seattle has a little catching up to do.

        Actually it feels like the Greeks are catching up to us.

        To be fair, we kick our mayor out of office– we don’t vote him back in, we just vote someone exactly like him back in, then wonder why nothing changes.

        1. I haven’t seen any Seattleites on Steam, begging for people to buy them games , yet.

          1. Is that really a thing? Greeks on Steam asking for games?

            1. Beware of Greeks beating GIFs.

              1. Bearing, dammit. But beating works too, I guess.

  10. I don’t know who this Limpee guy is, but it’s the first thing I read this morning and it has given me the confidence to roll out of bed and find myself breakfast. So thank you, Limpee.

    1. Will you be having fish? I like fish.

      I just suggest this guy make a slight change to his handle, like this:

      Limpee Wittlestick

      There, that’s better.

    2. That’s too much fish talk. I’m feeling queasy.

      1. My stomach lurched reading that.

        1. I still like fish.

  11. With a turnout of 55%, only 20% of the eligible population voted for Syriza. 80% did not vote for Tsipras.

      1. Me too!

        /Bill Deblasio

    1. I guess either 45% of the population don’t care that banks won’t let them have their own money, or they’ve just given up. I think it’s probably the latter.

  12. Hey, what’s with the use of the word chaos when talking about government????? Only anarchy including a free market can be considered chaos.

    I mean, you must ignore the reasons why watches, shoes, jewelry, boilers, plumbing supplies, online shopping, and all these things pretty much untouched by the regulators aren’t riddled with shortages, and are not in a state of chrisis or chaos.

    1. Because those act like normal markets, so no need to regulate their supply and/or price.

      Healthcare, however, doesn’t act like a normal market, so we have to regulate it up the wazoo. Imagine how bad healthcare would be if it weren’t subject to price and supply controls.

      1. I can only imagine. My newborn son was dropped from my health insurance because I couldn’t prove his citizenship. Apparently his birth certificate showing his birth in the US wasn’t good enough. Nor was a copy of my passport showing my US citizenship status. No no, the only acceptable proof of my NEWBORN son’s citizenship would be a driver’s license, a tax receipt, a a credit score with his name on it, his “selective service” card or any number of things that don’t actually prove citizenship. Then I wrote a complaint letter about several ways in which those requirements are absurd, among them that my son was obviously born in the US to an American parent and that a driver’s license is not only a poor proof of citizenship but that he’s a fucking baby.

        They sent my letter back to me stating that they didn’t read it because regulations state that the letter has to be handwritten, not typed.

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