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Greece and Italy: Technocratic Governments unable to control social unrest.

Protesters marching during first strike against technocratic greek government and its austeriry budget plan. Photo Credit Reuters

Unions in Greece are holding their first general strike in protest at austerity plans since technocrat Lucas Papademos took over as prime minister. Public services shut down along with rail and ferry services but airports stayed open, as did the Athens metro and the city’s stock exchange. Trade unionists representing about half of Greece’s workforce gathered for marches in the main cities.Trade unionists representing about half of Greece’s workforce gathered for marches in the main cities.

Those that believe technocrats -and not elected politicians- should govern the “european south” are wrong.

The government of the technocrat Papademos seems  unable to control social unrest in Greece, they got already the first strike.

Italy is next in line.

How long will it take before the italian technocrats leaded by Premier Mario Monti start suffering the same social unrest? This is not so difficult to predict. While the Monti government’s financial rescue plan is yet to be finalized, already labor unions are denouncing  the anticipated harsh measures meant to save the country from bankruptcy.  Unions seem particularly annoyed that Premier Mario Monti, in his rush to reassure markets about Italy’s ability to control its debt and spur growth, is doing away with the government traditional style of negotiations with them.

In the end politics is the art of solving people’s problems. Among other things, not imposing solutions but looking after social support.

Because the interesting thing here is to define who the technocrats are most faithful to: a) to those who chose them into government (not precisely Italian voters neither Greeks citizens, but allegedly Berlin and Paris), or b) the people and national states they -the technocrats- claim to represent. Time will tell.