We want Greece to become an organized and credible state. The crisis in Greece has led to a major economic, social and moral disaster. The establishment that brought us here cannot reverse the decline. Social cohesion structures have collapsed, while basic services and state benefits which were commonly accepted and unquestionable in the past as norms are no longer present. When the center does not hold, everything collapses about it: it is similar to a change in the laws of physics governing the earth’s s orbit. A large part of the intangible web which holds our society together in a united whole has been shaken and torn apart. As a result we now stand stricken and skeptical before these unprecedented developments in our country. We do not have the luxury of remaining silent. Silence involves historical complicity. Silence means acceptance, concurrence and acquiescence. Our country is under urgent pressure today, now. Now is the time to make real changes. It is now that we have to respond to the demands of history, of the present and of the future. That is why we, ordinary citizens from different parts of the country, people coming from different professions and backgrounds, different social classes and age groups, are coming together: We want to give ourselves the opportunity of taking our lives and destinies into our hands and putting an end to this continuing decay. We are now establishing a genuinely new political movement aiming to defend Greece, its creativity and production. It is called: The “Democratic Responsibility”
We call on those democrats and compatriots, the citizens all over who reside within and beyond the borders of Greece to come together and as one take responsibility for the present and the future of our country. We aim to stop the downhill slide and to reverse the senseless destruction of our economy. Social solidarity is not a simple dream, the fair redistribution of goods is not utopian. It is reached through proper organization and a robust growth, it is achieved though prudent, serious and hard work, it is acquired by eliminating endless and thoughtless wastefulness and by correcting chronic injustices.
We call on the people to put the country back on its feet, to complete the prototype democratic model, to protect the citizen from the vague arbitrariness of state administration. Let Greece become what we know it can become. The country may be on the brink of bankruptcy, but the bank of justice still has a lot to lend us. There may not be the funds to invest in the economy, but we still have the inexhaustible capital that sits untapped in the great treasury of opportunity of this nation. Through the area that defended the national and humanitarian ideals in Greece, which gave clear priority to policies which reduce social inequalities and improve the lives of the weaker classes of the population. These ideals were served in Europe by social democracy and in our country through progressive forces.
We call those who recognize that true political movements do not arise from the speeches of demagogues, but are born when citizens choose their leaders, believe in and follow them through a particular course, a course which in order to be socially fair, also needs to be clean in form and spiritual at its heart. We call upon anyone who understands that the New flows from society itself rather than the designing-rooms of power technicians. We call for the mobilization of those who believe that the country cannot continue moving in the deadlock of inability. We are the only ones responsible for our country. The Democratic Responsibility is yours.
Populism- which is easily appealing but lacking in a specific ideology and a definite political or social position and thus lacks any responsibility – has destroyed the Greek people. Statehood has destroyed the Greek state. Demagogy and partisanship have destroyed the Hellenic Republic. We have ravaged the future in order to live in the past, and now that we have come to the present, we have found our moral treasuries broken and vacant. Individualism – wherein the exercise of one’s goals and desires advocate that the interests of the individual should achieve precedence over the welfare of the state or a society – has become the most dominant ideology of the present, either overtly or covertly. Mostly overtly lately, as the media of our societies unashamedly promote it as a virtue. There never was and there is no virtue in individualism which shows no responsibility toward the society which supports that same individual.
These pathogens led a part of the people to confuse lies with truth, falsehood with hope. Is there hope? Yes, there is! We are optimistic about the future of our country. It will not be an easy path. We have seen where easy paths have led us. We do not believe in the idolatry of populism. Our inspiration arises from the optimism that derives from the prospect of creating and from relentless work, which, with determination and persistence, with faith and steady vision, step by step, using our moral values as a compass, leads to growth and progress. We rely on our timeless values to build everything from the beginning: Respect and Dignity for all. Appraisal, appreciation and meritocracy as a fair reward. Equality everywhere and for everyone. We want transparency rules applicable in real life instead of just remaining written and so dead on a piece of paper.
The young always want to live authentically, in truth and so they need new political and social imperatives. They do not want to coexist with the so called “distress” concerning their future, the fear which the current establishment trades on and feeds off. It is this supposed angst, which in fact only highlights the selfish individualism of the inept, the feeling of insecurity of the malingerer, the preservation of the interests and privileges of the complacent, the terror of some before their rickety conviviality and the fear of every opportunist-authoritarianist in the face of reality . The striving to renew society is never ending. Every day, every week, every month the effort to build a nation which is socially and economically viable and just continues.
The uprisings of the young, of women, of ecologists, environmentalists, etc., as well as the new forms of action via the use of the Internet supporting specific causes, are the promising and vibrant fabric that will robe and embellish the novel era we stand for.
Nothing remains as of old. A new state, a new administration, a new institutional organization of the Greek state. With institutional changes to the Constitution of course. With new political, economic and social institutions in place. We invite you to create from the very beginning a nation which sustains, to become a servant and a citizen’s protector. To create a new administration that does not serve itself and its own private privileges, but promotes and supports the development of the country and its people (because there exists no country without the people). To staff it with young people who live within and beyond the borders of Greece, who have honed their specialized knowledge, know-how and skills. To put a definitive end to today’s state of mediocrity. The old, the arrogant, the bowed will fight for its privileges. But the new will win and lure and carry away with it the old one
Greece belongs and will remain in the inner most core of the European Union. At this time of international geopolitical destabilization, especially in our region, we have no right to turn Greece into a vulnerable country. On the contrary, it can be a factor of stability only in a robust and healthy Europe. (???) We invite you to defend against every effort of the populists and the mediocre to transform this nation into a 3rd- Europe state. We are asking for the creation of the Federation of European People, a Europe offering progress and solidarity toward all its members. In these days of crisis, we are experiencing the bitter truth that national sovereignty without a strong and credible and enduring economy cannot exist. For some, this great lesson self-awareness, seven years after the crisis, still remains as a national issue.
We invite you to stop the obsessive and destructive hostility towards entrepreneurship. Stop the salesmen and background figurants of populism from trading social sensitivity and from plundering social resources in the name of an alleged protection of the people. Growth will not come “from nowhere” nor shall it fall “like a manna from the heavens”. Growth can only come from private initiative and social entrepreneurship, not from the state-owned breeding houses of corruption. The market generates prosperity, public control, and justice, and the welfare state reduces inequalities. Social wealth must touch all strata of our society. Let us deconstruct bureaucracy through e-Government and open data. Let us live the polychromatic creativity of the modern era leaving far behind us the black bureaucracy that devours our being day by day.
Production restructuring must commence now, immediately, without any further delay. The current political and economic system did not and does not have the capacity to construct the necessary conditions for development. Today production is left to the mercy of our lenders’ controversial proposals and to the counterproductive revenue hunt of a state that only knows how to pass sentence and punish- an attitude which destroys, creating frustration and dead-ends as it is unfair and against the basic workings of human learning. And thus, any vision we have is summarily blunted by the rash wreath of power, any hope we have nullified by ignorant impotence and indifference. In order for production to exist and bring forth new wealth to the country, monumental and nuclear changes are required.
Precipitous “odd-jobbing” and last minute patching up will not save the crumbling edifice. The new Greek production model will be based on the small and middle class Greek entrepreneurship. However, in order to thrive in the global economy of this planet, we must reward those businesses which survive in the global market. Those companies which are considered large businesses in our country are tiny in comparison to the foreign multinational conglomerates. We support businesses which build a global Greek brand name. At the same time, we are not for the transfer of productive reconstruction only to large foreign capital entities which could exploit our resources only for their own benefit.
Indicatively, we aim to strengthen and stabilize small and medium-sized entrepreneurship by taking it through a gradual but large de-escalation of tax rates. Properly designed tax cuts will lead to greater growth without jeopardizing fiscal balance. The budget will balance with a combination of growth and cuts in government spending, as part of a holistic and radical restructuring of all state functions. At the same time, it is necessary, without any tardiness and/or deliberate delays, to attract the foreign and Greek private investments which will create jobs. Investments today stumble upon the open hostility and merciless persecution underlying the “ideological hegemony” of populism and demagoguery. A proud nation does not live on charity. It lives with vision and a program, “with logical thought and with a dream”, while proposing and establishing a stable, institutional and effective public order in the country.
The functioning of Justice is of crucial importance for the institutional and economic recovery of the country, of guaranteeing the rule of law and protection of citizens. Only independent operatives of a truly and functionally independent Justice – with logistical infrastructure and human resources and manpower – can guarantee the speedy delivery of an allotment plan. Only they can break the vicious circle of corruption.
Culture and Education comprise the great scenes on which Greece can really shine again. We have a world-wide privilege of immeasurable value: “Giving value to life. This is the ancient art of life. “All that has been ever espoused in ancient and modern Greek thought. This is the practice of all that Greeks who dare, who succeed, who distinguish themselves, who forge new avenues of action and creation. Within and beyond the borders of Greece. We go forth to collectively succeed as (a nation) Hellenism wherever there is a land, to awaken once more the Greek creative spirit by supporting it with through a modern educational system which will empower our youth to develop and create according to their ability and force
The invitation is personal. It is an invitation towards every Greek woman, every Greek man who understands this country and is anxious about his and his children’s future standing in the world. If we do not act now, then we are solely responsible putting our future in danger. It is pure Fatality to ignore the urgency of our times. The old establishment will continue its theater of the absurd so as not to lose power, a power it has consolidated and mastered during the decades of political changeovers and transitions. The country’s elite have failed in their mission. We invite you to become the voice of the vast and silent majority of Greeks who struggle daily to conquer their today and their tomorrow. This circle, we are at present dwelling in, closes around us disastrously in ruins and as all circles it runs the danger or repeating itself if we take no responsibility for it now. Youth, male and female, can break down this circle with powers of action, creativity, initiation, innovation and success.
This invitation also concerns prominent citizens from the fields of politics, production, from the circles of intellectuals, people of art, science and administration. In addition to those already assisting in this effort, we call upon each individual person, each citizen of this country to actively support the creation of this new effort. We call upon them to assume responsibilities and tasks for the reconstruction of our country, as part of a collective effort, and we invite them to enrich our society with new ideas, new tools, new proposals, new people. We do not want saviors. We want citizens: To enhance this effort with the credibility and stature of their knowledge, expertise and experience. To protect, along with all of us, who have taken the initiative to create Democratic Responsibility, to protect its authenticity from attempts of distortion, appropriation or discrediting. To turn the maliciously intended discords that have historically harassed our society into a robust and vibrant confidentiality and concurrence which will unite and bring peace to our nation.
And then, at the same time, we welcome with joy any question, contestation, any meaningful challenge as this accrues dialogue and dialogue accrues public debate and that accrues equality and respect among people and that cannot happen without Responsibility. Responsibility toward ourselves, our words, toward all others, toward our own vision and hopes.