Greece’s Socialist Education

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On a personal level, Greece’s prime minister understands that “public” education, like public housing, public toilets, and public transportation, is a euphemism for inferior. But Papandreou the politician is different from Papandreou the person. Whoever said the personal is the political never met a socialist.

This cognitive dissonance is key to understanding the inability of the third-generation prime minister to bring the nation’s out-of-balance books into balance. Rhetorically touting austerity measures while continuing to handout free eye exams, free tuition, and free babysitting is the free ride that leads to the free fall. Just as the boy prime-minister-in-waiting didn’t see the disconnection between crumby state schools for the masses and tony private colleges for the masters, the prime minister doesn’t make the connection between the government’s free-handed handouts and Greece perpetually putting its hand out to Europe.

Greece, like its prime minister in his college years, has a socialism problem. George Papandreou solved his socialism problem by using his wealth to obtain a superior education away from his homeland’s state-funded university monopoly. Greece can solve its socialism problem only by not practicing what its government preaches. Papandreou the prime minister, like Papandreou the student, reconciles socialist deed with word at his own peril.

The ideas that worked so brilliantly in London School of Economics classrooms and Amherst College lecture halls somehow failed in Greece. Alas, Papandreou gleaned the wrong lesson. Whatever professors said about socialism in those classes was refuted by what Papandreou attending those professors’ classes said about socialism. Socialism fails so miserably that even socialists would rather pay for what government gives away.

You can learn a lot from a socialist education. Most of the lessons aren’t ones the teachers mean to impart.

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  • maturin20

    23 uses of the words "socialism" and "socialist"! High five! Way to mark the terms!

  • steven l

    The "three families" controlling Greece descend to hell are self sufficient for 1000 of generations. Why change the system as long as the Grecque people do not hit the wall.

  • Ben

    Socialist ideology is so indistinct (the adherent called it "teaching" ) that it have to be provided by the teaching of the immense leader`s role (to clear the indistinct places).
    Papandreous dinasty is the usual habit of socialistic or semi-socialistic worlds,remember Azerbaijan Alievs and so on.Besides nationalism flourish in Greese too but it is in the course of Europe`s support of the Europe`s cradle.

  • Ben

    Dear Mr. Flynn, not opposing your rights, I can`t understand why the opinion of some anonym reader though not quite correct or politically correct makes harm. Authors willingly publish comment of the political enemies, but in the case of supporters with some deviations their "mistakes" make you feel responsible for them.It`s strange for me.(not for publishing)

  • StephenD

    I'd bet dollars to donuts (wait donuts are worth more than dollars now) that the Socialist economics training he received then is the same now. I’d love to see the professors respond to this. I picture something along the lines of the scene in the “Back to School” movie with Rodney Dangerfield telling the professor what the “Real” business world was like.

  • mlcblog

    Socialism, a cancer unto itself.

    This article is very interesting. I had not been able to see what was going on in Greece. Thank you, Mr. Flynn, as usual with your work.

    I am thinking this could explain in part why I see so many industrious business-oriented Greek families over here in the USA.

  • jasonz

    its not that hard to understand. socialists in power are not stupid. they KNOW socialism,(marxism whatever the new term for an old idea is now) simply cannot and dies not work. but its not about helping or fairness..never was. its about power and control. marxist figured out the simple rule. a person that takes power and weilds power by force is a dictator. the same person that does the same thing but fools people thinking his control is 'for their own good' is a socialist. only the useful idiot at the bottom like the OWS and in greece etc actually think they are going to be given everything. thats why they have to recruit kids to protest, cause only children unquestionably believe in fairy tales like socialism. thats why you cant reson with them. they do not have the brain power or experience to understand that they are signing their own death warrant. you just take over and force them to do the right thing cause thats all the understand

  • Ghostwriter

    Right now,Greek-Americans are weeping for what happened to their ancestral land.

  • mlcblog

    Socialism, a cancer unto itself.

    Thank you once again, Mr. Flynn, for an excellent and informative article.

    The situation in Greece may help explain why I am running into so many enterprising business-minded Greek families here in the USA who have left their mother country years ago.

  • tanstaafl

    Socialism, Socialism, Socialism, Socialism……..

    Still repulsive.

  • Ozzy

    Funny to blame the Greeks and not the Rich who robbed their country.

  • nexium vs prilosec

    Its about power and control. marxist figured out the simple rule. a person that takes power and weilds power by force is a dictator. the same person that does the same thing but fools people thinking his control is 'for their own good' is a socialist. Greek-Americans are weeping for what happened to their ancestral land.

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