The election struggle for a new parliament in Greece in 2012 will be remembered as the most sluggish manifestation of political agitation. The memorandum of financial assistance and its conditions have divided the participants in the political arena in the country into two main camps - "for" and "against" European financial aid. Moreover, political initiatives such as election meetings, public debates and loud attacks known from the past have given way to press conferences of medium length. At them, the leaders of main parties are not very successfully trying to persuade journalists that they are the best and most capable to help Greece emerge from the crisis. All TV channels with national coverage are broadcasting their presentations live and this is how politicians are "getting into contact" with the potential voters.
At the same time, the only place where party passions are colliding is the web and the social networks. They have become the main arena of political agitation. Political analyst Plamen Tonchev very clearly describes the nature of the Internet duels for votes in the election campaign:
The fierce competition between political parties and candidates in conjunction with the retreat of newspapers and the establishment of new media has created an electronic cafe with no limits. This cafe can become a social institution, especially in an era when everyone wants to speak, but no one can boast about the level of the talks held. The democratic nature of the cafe and the pluralism of opinions expressed do not guarantee their quality.
Views supporting or opposing the various parties are attacking ordinary users of social networks with agitation from all directions. The new arena of populism cannot be confined within a square, a radio interview or television time. Slogans, calls and messages are circulating in the unlimited space of the Internet, using as carriers tens of thousands of virtual branches of our identity. Voters and candidates are spreading their views and are giving their opinions (whether they are wanted or not) in the form of comments on facebook, twitter, youtube, myspace - all branches of the self in the era of communication.
"Together in the journey to Hope. End of what has been hurting us. We are strengthening New Democracy. Bring other brothers in arms to the polls. Let us go together. Antonis Samaras." This is the message of the leader of the right-wing party, PASOK's main opponent, posted on twitter at the end of April. He has over eight thousand "true" followers in this social network. Twenty of them sent with admiration his message to their followers and a few made the comment their favourite. This is just an example of how anyone can remind the others of himself whether what was said had some deeper meaning or is just a drop in the ocean of general election campaigning.
Similar words of encouragement are not missing from PASOK's leader Evangelos Venizelos either. "greeks are fighting and we will succeed" is just one of the "calls" in the account of the socialist leader, which is not enjoying a great success. Most of his posts are either ignored by the green fans, or are criticized with comments like this: "Fight first to write Greeks (in the beginning of the sentence) with a capital "G" and then, we'll see ...".
The attacks, however, are not by the voters against the politicians, but among the opponents themselves. The famous right politician with hereditary, but still undeveloped bias towards leadership Kyriakos Mitsotakis, in turn, is throwing the gauntlet to the environmentalists and the left: "I have noticed that all the paperwork related to the elections (posters, brochures, etc.) comes from the environmentally friendly left." "Tsipras has fallen so low as to offer a right-left government," Venizelos commented on twitter on the proposal of the far left SYRIZA to join forces with the right Independent Greeks of Kamenos. Evangelos Venizelos has a series of criticisms for his main rival Antonis Samaras and he is repeating them not only before every camera, but also on the web. One of them is, "Samaras was hiding behind us during the most difficult negotiations," which is becoming more persistent after the rise in popularity of the liberal in the results of the election polls.
Extreme left political forces in Greece have found a much more interesting and indirect way to spread their ideas. They are using not only known social networks for election propaganda and criticism of the current political system, but are also broadening their horizons beyond the hard electorate, resorting to different tools of agitation. One of them is the recently released documentary "Catastroika - privatization goes public", which explores the failures of privatization processes in different countries in the last 30 years. The filmmakers have tried and found more than a few examples of failed privatization that has caused serious damage to taxpayers. A number of economists, philosophers and political analysts with different arguments support the film thesis related to the transfer of state property (no matter how badly it is managed) in private hands. What is missing, however, to call the documentary truthful is the other side of the coin. At the end of the film, the viewer is left with the impression that Greece gave birth to the beginning of each evil through the plan for privatization, and the fact that the corrupt government system is to blame for the collapse of the local economy has been seriously neglected.