George A. Papandreou (born June 16, 1952) is Former Prime Minister of Greece, current President of Socialist International, a Member of the Hellenic Parliament and former President of the Panhellenic Socialist Movement (PASOK). He served as the 11th Prime Minister of Greece from October 6, 2009 - November 11, 2011, after PASOK’s victory in the October 2009 national elections.

George A. Papandreou

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Speech at the event for the 31st anniversary of the founding proclamation of PASOK

(Abstracts)

“Many years to all of us. The river that is called PASOK, may go through difficult turning-points occasionally, but it does not turn ever back. And today your own presence, our own presence, shows our dynamism. 31 years PASOK. Companions and companions and, friends and friends, with altogether the new bodies of the Movement, we go forward in deep changes, in positions, in opinions in our own society. Today we celebrate the 31 years from the Founding Proclamation of PASOK. A big historical drive from a Greece of poverty, submission, dividing lines, in a Greece proud, fair, democratic. In “a Greece of all Greeks”, as said, our Founder, Andreas Papandreou.

And afterwards, in a powerful, modern, European Greece, for which labored Kostas Simitis, and who asked me to transfer his fighting greetings, here, in our meeting tonight. We are here with faith in our ideas, in our values, with our vision for Greece and the Hellenism, with our positions, ready to again engrave a new course for our country….

Today, one year afterwards, the picture of this Greece, appears as an optical illusion. Where is the hope? Where are the objectives? Where is the prospect, our presence, our culture? Where is the grin of youth? Where is Greece? Today Greece is on trial.

The New Democracy and Mr Karamanlis they came with the oratory of “new governing”, to collide supposedly with the established interests, they set hares with “petrahilia” and with a style of public prosecutor and reformer they proclaimed the intermediate field, they gave promise of modesty and humility. Today, they have nailed the country; they pointlessly wasted the fortune, our wealth, the wealth not only the material, but also the human capital of our country. They are not only reconciled simply with the interests, they deal with them, they strengthen them at the expense the citizens. Is Greece is on trial from a government that said other things, and is doing other, and is revealed daily.

Each day we see from one part, an authoritarian neoliberal perception and from the other a cliental statism. A combination that has as victim the citizen. They respect neither the laws of market, neither the meritocracy, neither the social protection of the feeble. It is a policy in favor of the few, at the expense of the many, a policy of lack of meritocracy, corruption and partisanship. One cliental capitalism with as victim the correct citizen, the landlord, with victim the feeblest, in our society. It is a cliental capitalism that voids the pockets of the worker with the inflation and the taxation, that projects with the supposedly reforms more and more the cost to the popular classes, that goes ahead with a redeployment of wealth, giant redeployment of wealth and incomes in favor of the rich, impoverishing the country and the people…

The New Democracy does not have a plan for the country. Her sole planing is revealed, it is “the power for the power”. With her policy it enclaves Greece and the Greek, in the new favor, the transaction, the phobia, the insecurity, and let it be attitude’. It enclaves Greece in closed horizons and the Greek in dead-end daily. While, there exist other choices. No we are not all the same. We are different. We bring other choices, different choices. And the fairy tale that “for all is to blame the PASOK”, is a fairy tale that has collapsed. We are a big, calm force with the values of 3 September that opens new innovative streets and resisting the slope of New Democracy. Within the slope of New Democracy neither the PASOK will drift, neither Greece will drift. Friends and friends, the citizens wait from us, want once again the PASOK. The PASOK with his soul, but also the PASOK of new visions, modern alternative proposals.

We are inspired by our values and we inspire again for the tomorrow. We do that today symbolically, honoring the protagonists of 3 September and the executives of our first Parliamentary Team. We wed our delivery with the newly elected executives of our Organizations that are today here, with appetite for work and fights. I am today addressing the youth of our country and all the Greek citizens. I set down the frame of a new vision. And we want the new generation to be a leader. Opposite to the black Bible of New Democracy, we unfold our own White Bible, a vision progressive, a proposal alternative, that releases most creative forces of Hellenism, what made on 3 September 1974 the PASOK. A statement for the liberation of the forces of Hellenism. Withinn this proposal, I call on them to contribute with their own ideas and proposals, those who agree with the basic principles. Those who have different opinions, we are ready to hear them. And those who they embrace our proposals, I call them to be prepared, to make these values action following the next elections, when the PASOK will be government of country..

We are together also ally with the forces that ask for a radical liberalism in the field of rights of populations. We fight for the freedom of our neighbor, who he might be, the protection and the respect of human rights. For the rights of women, everywhere, and in the Moslem countries. We are, and we have proved that in our Movement, in solidarity with the Moslem world, the population, that is experiencing absolutely and also theocratic regimes, foreign invasions and occupations. We support the tolerance to the different, be it nationality, religious, political or even sexual. We adversely fightthe extreme right perceptions. The New Democracy today leaves extreme rights of Europe to use our country as a symbol, with gathrings in Messinia, and the government of New Democracy bears responsibilities for this.

For us Greece symbolizes worldwide the democracy, no the fascism. We adversely fight these extreme perceptions, the racism, the anti-Semitism, anti-islamism. We adversely fight the obscurantism and the bias, adversely the demagoguery. We fight together with the world Movements for poverty, against the oppression, the inequality and AIDS. We adversely fight the digital and educational divide… Here the PASOK allies itself and expresses forces of humanity. Not one can remain behind. Not one can fall on the fringe. Not one is so much big that he does not need the other, not so much small in order to be unnecessary. This means that the system of assistance needs to be reformed, in order that not only it pensions off, but also that it shapes all the essential conditions, along with Education, in order to maintain and extend the active population…”

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