Cyprus Mail
CM Regular Columnist

Here’s to the day when the abstention rate hits 70 per cent

The new Nostradamus?

By Johan van den Kerkhof

MEET THE new Nostradamus: he is none other than the boss of DISY, Averof ‘Foulis’ Neophytou. Peering through his crystal ball, the likeable Foulis prophesied this week that Cyprus would exit the dreaded troika adjustment programme in late 2015, ahead of schedule. Say Foulis, while you’re at it, can I get a reading on who’s going to win the World Cup? I’ll pay for the séance of course. Tell you what, if you guess right – as I’m sure you will – we’ll split the take on the bet.

We’ll put that one down to a bad case of electionitis. Yes, politicians do tend to get carried away. Hilarious nonetheless. Even more entertaining was the riposte from DIKO jefe Nicholas Papadopoulos, who got all serious and stuff about it. Taking issue with Foulis, Nicholas – legal eagle that he is – marshalled an entire legalistic argument to disprove that it’s possible to exit the memorandum earlier. Seriously, dude. Foulis was just messin’. Let it slide.

By the by, what happens once we’re out of the economic adjustment programme? Will manna fall from the sky? Methinks not. But I guess elaborating on that would have screwed up Foulis’ cool sound bite.

Moving on. Driving around, I spotted a poster for the Citizens Alliance declaring that Cyprus must exploit “our natural gas,” the emphasis on “our.” What, as opposed to exploiting somebody else’s gas? Oh ok, maybe it was a reference to the whole spiel about Cyprus and Israel pooling their gas reserves. When pigs fly. But again with the gas? Really, Mr. Lillikas, leave it alone.

On the subject, word is that the gas expert Lillikas has been parading about is not an authority on hydrocarbons after all. The guy is a mathematician by profession. No offence to the gentleman, and if I’m wrong about this factoid I hereby stand corrected with all due apologies.

You get the feeling that whenever elections are around the corner somehow every little thing under the sun is magnified in intensity? Vote for me, because this is a crossroads or the end of the world as we know it, etc. Gee, only yesterday all was normal, the grass was green and youngsters went on benders. Is the cosmos trying to tell us something? Perhaps Stephen Hawking can explain the phenomenon.

People, we desperately need more political satire on TV. Patates Antinachtes is not bad, but doesn’t go far enough. And there’s a lot of material out there.

Hate to ruin this on a more sombre note, but it’s my show anyway, dammit. Come Sunday, I’m keeping away from voting booths. If you genuinely – and I mean genuinely – think there’s a candidate out there who’s worth it, by all means go cast a ballot. Otherwise stay home. Respect your vote, don’t sell it cheap. And don’t fall for that baloney from politicians, that abstaining is wasting your rights as a citizen. We all know why they say that. Listen, just because you’re entitled to vote doesn’t mean you have to come hell or high water. Here’s to the day when the abstention rate hits 70 per cent, and the politicos who’ve just spent thousands on ads are left with gaping mouths. Never will happen in this country though, but one can always dream.

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