News Release

Anti-Austerity Victory in Greece


ABC News is reporting this morning: “Greece’s main opposition party formally requested an early general election Monday after winning the vote for the European Parliament, arguing that the country’s conservative government now lacks the legitimacy to implement reforms related to international bailouts.

“Alexis Tsipras, the 39-year-old leader of the left-wing Syriza party, visited Greece’s president to make the request ‘to restore the democratic order in the country.'”

COSTAS PANAYOTAKIS, [in NYC] cpanayotakis at
Panayotakis is professor of sociology at the New York City College of Technology of the City University of New York and author of Remaking Scarcity: From Capitalist Inefficiency to Economic Democracy.

He said today: “In Greece, where Europe’s response to the global economic crisis through harsh austerity measures was first and most ruthlessly applied, the victory of the anti-austerity left in the country’s election for the European Parliament confirms the sinking popular support for the ruling coalition and may catalyze the rise of a progressive anti-austerity front across Europe. Unfortunately, however, the result in Greece was also in line with the rise of anti-immigrant parties of the far right across Europe. The neo-Nazi Golden Dawn party, which has murdered and/or attacked immigrants, labor unionists and anti-fascist activists, and whose leaders are in jail, facing charges for having established a criminal organization, actually saw its support rising to over nine percent, thus establishing itself as the third largest party in Greece.”

For Panayotakis’ commentary on Greece, see his “Economic Democracy” column at The New York Times Examiner.