BIO-Tsipras

Next up in our profile series of the EU Commission President candidates is a look at motorcycle-riding former-communist and political firebrand Alexis Tsipras, leader of the Greek Radical Left SYRIZA (the second-largest party in the Greek Parliament) and the official Commission President candidate for the Party of the European Left in the upcoming 2014 European Parliament elections.

Born in Athens in 1974, Tsipras is unusually youthful for a Member of the Hellenic Parliament (and he was the youngest ever leader of a Greek political party when he became head of Synaspismos – the largest party in the SYRIZA coalition – at the age of just 33). A civil engineer by training, Tsipras joined the Young Communist Society in the late 1980s and quickly drew attention to himself as a prominent student activist.

Whilst he claims to have moderated his views somewhat since his radical student days, he is still a fierce critic of what he sees as anti-democratic neoliberal capitalism and the “powers of the oligarchy”. He believes in withdrawing from NATO, imposing a 75 per cent tax on the rich and nationalising public services (including the banking system, which he argues should be operated for the public good and not for profits). Despite criticising existing EU policies, Tsipras is not a traditional eurosceptic, and he says he wants to keep Greece in the euro whilst tearing up the bailout agreement and ending the policies of austerity which he argues have decimated society.

His critics call him unrealistic, inexperienced and a populist. But, under Tsipras, SYRIZA has (along with the neo-fascist Golden Dawn party) emerged as the surprise benefactor of Greek rejection of the mainstream. From taking 3.3% of the vote in the 2004 elections, support for SYRIZA shot up during the 2012 elections to almost 27% of the vote. Most polls today put his party in first place. But can he replicate these results across Europe?

If you want you can vote for the Radical Left in our Debating Europe Vote 2014. If not, stay tuned as we’ll be publishing profiles of the rival candidates over the coming weeks.

Vote 2014

Voting is closed in our Debating Europe Vote 2014! The results are now in, so come and see what our readers thought!



106 comments Post a commentComment


  1. Yiannis Piliouras

    A candidate that doesn’t even speak English well. European Left shows its political decline through that candidancy

    • Ricard Parrilla Guix

      We should start thinking not only about putting a stop to the dominance of certain economic and social groups to otherd. We should also put a stop to the dominance of certwin cultural groupsmtp others in Europe: and this includes not tryimg to impose English (or German, or Polish, or Maltese) as the lingua franca in the European Union. So I do not see why the fact that Tsipras does not speak proper English and not, let us say, proper French shouod be a measure of political decadence.

    • Andrea Zorzetto

      Ricard Parrilla Guix, I disagree. How can we have a common identity if we cannot even speak to each other? Without speaking the same language other Europeans will always be seen as foreigners. Now that we have the elections it would be necessary to have public debates, interviews on tv channels, etc… but this cannot be done at a European level because there is no common language. It is not about imposing a language, it is about everybody speaking both their native language and English (doesn’t make any sense choosing other languages), so that everybody has a national but also a European identity. Indeed, here we can debate because we all speak English, and I do not think we are all brits (I am not)!

    • G.DANIILIDIS

      Alexis Tsipras is the only candidate worth of voting for and cares about european citizens.The others are puppets of market vultures and destroyed E.U.

    • Pietro Moroni

      I agree. I prefer Schulz. He is a dreamer too, but he knows what he is talking about and how to realize our dreams. Nonetheless, I hope that after Schulz’s victory, the European Left will support him with other parties like Greens and maybe Alde in order to keep the conservatives out of the Commission.

    • Wihlelm

      In Europe, there is 24 languages. How many of them do you speak ? Europe it’s not English word.
      And there is more people in EU who speak German than English. Do you speak German ?

    • Jaume

      more important than english speaking is their friends!… does he has good friends in FMI? or in private banking systems? big corporations? … ok … this is why I will vote for him!.

    • Jaume

      Another thing… he can speak english… maybe not very well, I mean as a native english!… no problem… I will understand him much better… the only people i dont understand when speaking english are native enlgish people!.

    • Pietro Moroni

      @Wihlelm

      Well, then let’s use Latin again, alright? xD

    • Alex Kypriotakis-Weijers

      What about the social decline of Europe? What about the double standards of the European Union over prosperity and democracy? What about the armies of unemployed people? The economic blackmailing and supremacy of capital? You neo-liberals accuse the left for populism while you yourselves are worst on that and have a great tradition in such tactics!

    • tomasnunes

      That’s why you have interpreters, speaking English should not be a barrier. And don’t see Barroso speaking in Greek, the language who gave the name to our continent.

    • Eva Skoudaropoulou

      naive criticism young man

    • Manolis Katrantzis

      And when was it that English language proficiency became a prerequisite for a political candidacy in an EU critical post? Political decline characterizes YOUR untransparent conservative party of lobbyists, elitists, a place where people become politicians due to connections and kin relationships .

    • Pietro

      So, you’re suggesting a direct link between English language proficiency and the ability lead the EU Commission? Mmmmm, ok. Let’s elect ONLY English, Irish and Maltese candidates from now on. PS: you know that the EU Commission has not one but TWO departments dedicated to translations and interpreting, right?

    • Dimitris Seremetis

      “A candidate that doesn’t speak English”: that is the English you do know! What a pity… Why are you so interested to European Left, given that you are a candidate with Neoliberals in GREECE???

    • medusa

      I have heard Mr tsipras interventions many times in english, he’s english is fairly good with a strong pronunciation. It sells you guys care more about the appearance of things than essence of contents and programs

    • Diego

      I seriously doubt you know English well enough to even compare with Tsakalotos though. Barely passed lower?

      Are you Greek though? I would expect you’d either have a problem with other candidates too who speak in their native languages, or not mind for Tsipras.

  2. Lisa Gregis

    Yes, I do support him in this elections! He’s the only one that can give us a real hope for another Europe! A better Europe!

    • mihai

      If you think that a communist Europe is a better one, feel free to visit North Korea. and stay there! they will certainly care about you!

    • Andonis Frantzis

      No way – his views are too extreme and populist, telling people what they want to hear in this climate as opposed to solid policies and innovation is much of th same. Yet another flop on the Greek political landscape

    • Yanno

      I hope that he cleans up the European Parlament. The E.U. is an Augias stable.

  3. Stelios Koulouris

    Definitely we will support him. Regarding the comment above, I don’t recall E.U. to have English as the sole official language. Perhaps Yiannis is confusing E.U. with the USA.

    • Tarquin Farquhar

      Greece has an extremely intelligent population – indeed it has a great history replete with exemplars of great intellect.

      The fact that this so-called politician is Greek and cannot speak English well, marks him down as a bit of a dim wit, which is relatively unusual for a native of Greece.

    • Andrea Ironhill Zorzetto

      No it does not but if we want a better, more democratic and integrated Europe a common language is paramount and it surely must be English. A candidate that cannot speak it well loses points in this regard.

    • Andonis Frantzis

      Alex Tsipras to the toilet

  4. Sotiris Kalli

    The guy doesn’t even know what he is talking about. Go through all his speeches and see that in practice none of the solutions he offers to the Greek society are possible in practice.

    • Nikol

      Εverything is possible if we go for it. Otherwise all the utopias of the past would never had become the reality of today. So, you just get your head down and look at your shoes….that’s something absolutely realistic but with no value at all …..

  5. Gerry Mavris

    Don’t worry Sotiris, a EU Commission President Tsipras will have many EU advisor’s with him on what to say on any given topic. A EU Commission President Tsipras will be a blessing for Greece. Its time for a Greek President for the European Commission.

    • Tarquin Farquhar

      Only someone who wanted to destroy the EU would consider a Greek politician as a reasonable candidate for the EU Commission Presidency.

      Greece is a great country BUT its political elite are not up to scratch I’m afraid, sorry.

  6. Maria Luisa Piras

    Sotiris Kalli : instead , as we see, Samaras and Venizelos know very well how to kill Greek people , helped by Troika .

    • G.DANIILIDIS

      Greek political elite is not Tsipras but present government and its E.U. collaborators who want to be voted as presidents .The team who is destroyed E.U. and first of all its citizens ,serving market vultures interests.Second and important a world civilized leader must know Greek first of all.

    • Marcel

      Better than Venizelos and Samaras, who are not only incompetent but also corrupt.

    • Jaume

      Based on what?… if we observe the actual EU we can conclude that incompetence is what we have now… demagoge is what you are doing… can you put please any example of his incompentence? probably not because he has never been in government!.

    • Frangeskos

      He’s arguments were very solid, on a legal or political point of view. The economic one were non precise at all but it’s a debate of 1-2 min answer don’t expect too much.

  7. George Danieldsg

    We support him.Represents Youth.Honesty and humanism are his values.E.U. will be very much better if he is elected.

  8. George Danieldsg

    @Ignorant of stealing and cheating people.And wise for serving E.U citizens and fihting market vultures.With plenty of first quality advisors.

  9. catherine benning

    This guy is the answer to the UKIP right. And it’s about time we had a clear delineation between political parties, as what we presently have in the mainstream is wishy washy, we are all the same and in it together brigade. Which leads to nowhere as does not allow the desirable opening for radically change. The world is changing and bordering on revolution, something has to give and democracy must rule. We don’t want to see the spread of violence akin to Ukraine. Who one has to wonder is at the back of that debacle, Has a smell to it that we see quite frequently nowadays.

    I don’t know enough about this party and its ideology to make a definitive argument for or against. I will have to read up on a lot more before I vote one way or the other.

    However, what already appears to be lacking is a coherent platform of what, who, how and when. That said, I like a lot of what I have read on this movement and this guy who is carrying the message. He and it needs to get its house in order and explain more.

    His age denotes some inexperience in long term and historical content and leaves one open to the fear of possible recklessness, remember John Kennedy, but, a shake up and division between what we have on offer presently, to a more ‘for the people’ approach makes sense. And this is total opposition to the far right we are living with. Can only be a good thing.

    I like him. But have to find out about the soft underbelly before any kind of true commitment could be entered into.

    And if English isn’t his first priority it should be most people throughout Europe have a good knowledge of it and can understand easier if he is fluent in it. Greek is not a world language. Wonderful as it may bel

  10. Paul X

    “He believes in withdrawing from NATO”

    From the NATO Website “NATO’s essential purpose is to safeguard the freedom and security of its members through political and military means”
    We can only assume that Mr Tsipras has plans for Greece to start WW3?

    “imposing a 75 per cent tax on the rich”

    So all the rich will just up anchor and move their Yachts to another country, Greece may be a nice place to live but certainly not that nice to be worth 75% of anybodies money

    “Nationalising public services (including the banking system, which he argues should be operated for the public good and not for profits)”

    Maybe he can explain if a bank makes no profit how does it have money to lend to people and businesses to create economic growth?

    “His critics call him unrealistic, inexperienced and a populist”…… I would also add “clueless”

    • Yag Shemash

      The rich won’t move their yachts abroad because capital flight restrictions would put in place.

    • catherine benning

      @Paul X:

      This is where we part company. I have been spouting for years that we should be out of NATO. It is not in European interests, it is US interests, Europe can devise their own system of defence. We are clever people and should be working in our own interests. The keeping of US control is expensive and akin to paying for the kind of protection the Mafia deal in.

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JFKJigCy1Xg

      .http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OE1tmqhiTG4

      Is this why we are seeing uprising in the Ukraine? That skirts the Russian border?

      75% tax is presently the norm in France. We shall see the reality of it given time. But it was 90% in the UK in the 50′s. And it produced a change we never regretted, the Welfare State, the NHS, open education. 75% is on the low side in this crisis. And the rich are not going anywhere, if they were they would already have gone. And to those who did, bye (wave)

      We should re-nationalise all utilities and the railways immediately. It is far cheaper for the tax payer and a better service.

      Banks should definitely be non profit organisations. They used to be and they got along very well indeed, as did their customers. It can be done and easily.

      http://www.channel5.com/shows/the-big-british-immigration-row-live/episodes/the-big-british-immigration-row-live

      Change:

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eHQ7wvWzUW0

      It is you that strikes me as clueless and whipping up a storm against your own interests, or, are you one of the top 1%?

    • Klaud

      I am pretty sure he does not plan to start a world war 3. Preventing a word war is the UN’s job, NATO was created to ensure the security of the west against the communist theat (NATO numbers 28 countries – UN numbers 192 countries. See the difference?). Plus Greece has left NATO before (other countries such as France have done the same thing in the past without starting a war).

    • Jaume

      first it seems you dont know how banks create money!.

      http://www.bankofengland.co.uk/publications/Documents/quarterlybulletin/2014/qb14q1prereleasemoneycreation.pdf

      Second NATO safeguard freedom of its members.. .which are not you and me… for instance you should remember what hapend in Itally with the RED GLADIORS or what happens in Ukrania now… You remember what happened on Libia… or what are they doing in SIRIA (they sell weapons to both sides!) … You like drones isn’t it? or facebook spionage?

  11. Panos Mentesidis

    tsipras for EU! hahaha..i like! he is completely useless and all he talks about is the “rise” of the lower classes, the “revolution” in the EU and all that crap,without actually telling us how he is planning to do all that and his party is full of ex Pasok members more corrupt than German companies(if possible). The moment Merkel starts shouting at him and Sarkozy(next french elections) starts attacking him he will run away faster than the road runner…hahahhaha go Tsipras! In Greece all politicians are like him..thats why no one trusts them. Big talk..attacking oppoments and then running away…oh and he also comes from a rich family that had connections with the Nazis in the 1940s and people say that his family was responsible for the death of Aris Velouhiotis..an actuall real revolutionery…hahahahhaha i am sorry i never expected to see his face here…hahajahahajahhahaha

  12. Lazaros Kalaitzidis

    As you can see all the persons against Alexis Tsipras here will just say “populist”, “demagogue”, without backing that with any argument. It’s the same people who are supporting those who lied to the european peoples about the crisis from day 1, and still haven’t admitted the truth. You see “all Greeks are lazy” is an easier message to pass than “our banks have gone bankrupt, we screwed up”. Who is the demagogue after all?

  13. Panos Mentesidis

    the fact that people dislike him does not mean that we support the political parties currently in parliament or the EU, or the IMF…we simply tell things the way they are…hahahahahhahajajajjahahahha tsipras head of the EU….hahaha i am sorry this is histerical..i cant stop laughing..next he should form a coalition with Nigel farrage and berlusconi! hahahahhaha

  14. Manos

    30% of his party, openly admits that is in favor of withdrawing from Euro currency. Half of his party officials are pure communists who look up to Trotsky etc. Mr Tsipras himself has said in the Greek Parliament that it would have been better if Greece was like Argentina, the results of its bankruptcy are still unresolved. The first trip of the shadow minister of foreign affairs was to Venezuela, clearly showing the trend that a possible government of the left would pursue.
    Let alone the fact that none of the economic suggestions of SYRIZA is viable or even doable. Tsipras is a straightforward populist of the worst kind who promises everything to everyone and his sole policy is narrowed down to ripping the MoU apart and sticking to prayers for a magical way to overcome the financial crisis.

    • Yag Shemash

      It’s a shame not all of them are communists.

  15. Tarquin Farquhar

    RADICAL Left = Very, very EXTREME.
    RADICAL Right = Very, very EXTREME.

    There is NO place for any form of EXTREMISM in politics, indeed not even in life.

    How on Earth did this questionable gentleman even get 1 vote?

    Where does he come from again?…

    • Stelios

      Yes, but is seems in your logic that Radical Neoliberals who want to privitise everything in Europe including the water we drink and the air we breath and cancel any element of a social state are kind of cool.

  16. Tarquin Farquhar

    RADICAL Left = Very, very EXTREME.
    RADICAL Right = Very, very EXTREME.

    There is NO place for any form of EXTREMISM in politics, indeed not even in life.

    How on Earth did this questionable gentleman even get even 1 vote?

    Where does he come from again?…

    • Andrea Ironhill Zorzetto

      There is no place for violence and intolerance in politics. Extremism is relative. 40 years ago neoliberal policies would have been considered quite extreme, now they are mainstream (unfortunately).

  17. Marcel

    Well we do need someone who will shut down banks and put the bankers in jail. Banks are obsolete.

  18. eusebio manuel vestias pecurto

    Não vou com a cara desse Sr Alexis Tsipras como candidado ao Presidente da Comissão Europeia

  19. Nikolaos Sotirelis

    Populism is an easily misunderstood word! It has two meanings.
    The first one is the man who supports and fights for the people’s rights. (Who wants to support elitism?)
    The second meaning is about the man that promises to the people, other and does other. So it has to be proven afterwards, if a man is populist or not.
    Till now the only people that have been proved themselves as liars, populists and demagogues, are the bunch of conservatives and neoliberals which are ruining Europe and its people. OSTRACIZED THEM!!!

  20. Paul X

    Ah well Catherine, it was nice while it lasted…….

    Anyway, apart from a rampant anti-US sentiment, what logical reason is there for a country to leave NATO?…. if by some chance every country in Europe left and we formed a European “NATO” the continual infighting that would occur within its high command would complete nullify its ability to do anything. An organisation like NATO needs a strong nation at its lead and like it or not the US holds that position, Europe is too much about “everyone country is equal” to be able to manage any type of useful military organisation (it would also have the founding country of the Mafia as one of its members so how much trust would we put in it?)

    France’s 75% tax rate is relatively recent, what is more important is just exactly how much increased revenue they are actually going to recieve?…..very little I imagine. This is pure populism and promising to tax the “the rich” is always a vote winner, unfortunately for them the fact they are rich means they are well experienced in ways and means to retain their wealth

    I fully agree with nationalising railways and utilities etc but I say again, if a bank makes no profit how does it get a surplus of money to lend which is one of the most important functions of a bank as far as the economy goes? This is another populist policy obviously inferring that because a bank makes a profit it must also be handing out “bankers bonuses”…….before anyone starts, I’m totally against these obscene bonuses, but I’m not so “clueless” that I don’t understand that before a bank can lend money must have the ability to make money

    Ciao

    • catherine benning

      Okay, Paul, lets takeit from the top.

      Nato: And why Europe should turn it’s back on it. Listen carefully and take on board the absolute fact, that the US is not strong, it is psychotic. They rely on war for their fat cats to get fatter and they want the European tax payer to pay for it. Once again we see the rise in pressure to recreate the cold war with Russia. They fear they are loosing their footing. The next move will be threats toward Europe that will strangle them. We have to take to the mattresses and get rid.

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YtBK3PjwEmo

      Our tax payers have far better ‘cohesive’ ways of spending money than footing the yanks in their maniacal war games. We have enormous deficits in infrastructure. this military crap is an unending waste that has to be self perpetuating. And why would there be more infighting than there is with the USA in there. That is nonsense. Peter Sellers had it so right.

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JaTR46iU1Do

      We move on to your fear of increased taxation on the very wealthy. Now why is that such a bother to you, yet, our people lining up at food banks, first brought in the the US long before the economic collapse in 2008. They had this glorious way of curbing the tax payers welfare money beginning with Reagan, followed by the aggressive Clinton administration who brought in ‘populists’ starvation whilst the rich got vastly richer. And the result is now world wide. Lets have a look at a small part of the outcome which I note you do not fear. Interesting that.

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7yL8oJJAEDs

      And this was done to the American tax payer in order to promote further greed for their dramatically wealthy billionaires who make their money through the selling of arms and energy. And we followed along like Hansel and Gretal believing in their fairy stories as we step in the brown stuff they leave behind them. Europe is too smart and too civilised for this coat tail hanging. And if you believe in populism, why don’t you push for testing it with ‘Direct Democracy’ as a way for the European states to go. Then we will see the difference between truth and spin.

      And the banks tripe you write about is simply rubbish, The printing of Fiat money is bankrupting us all and hiking the prices of everything from housing to food by mass inflation. Being held doown in the Uk temporarily until after the next election. It will then be rampant, making us all poorer and the top 1% even richer. Don’t believe me. The Canadian hired by the Bank of England did this exact move in Canada which is why our government wanted him so badly.

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2aKyHoZQg6Y

      And Banks have a duty to be not for profit as they are funded by the tax payer.

      .http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DOa8U0yixgQ&list=PL2070C8FFE89574AC

      Either you are deliberately trying to make a smokescreen or you are totally deluded.

      This Greek guy has his finger on the button, he simply needs the thinkers and the doers to teach him where he is right and where he is wrong in his move toward true socialism without the subjugation of the people. And for him to come up with a realistic manifesto backed up with how and voila, it would be no time at all before he could be a serious contender cross Europe as a whole. .

    • Andrea

      About fiat money and inflation, Catherine:

      We can argue about their desirability, but two facts:

      Inflation is not the problem! Actually it is deflation at the moment, especially in the eurozone.

      Low inflation and gold-backed money mean costs, and they are born especially by poor people! Low inflation is good for creditors (banks) and bad for debtors (governments, households), plus too low inflation mean higher unemployment (which obviously affects the lower classes more). Without fiat money we would have a way more contractionary monetary policy, this would make the current slump even worse. It is fine, you can attack fiat money and (allegedly) inflation, but who is this coherent with your concern about inequality?

    • Stelios

      We need NATO to protect us form whom exactly? Is North Korea threatening to invade Europe? Last time that Greece was in an armed conflict it was with Turkey during the invasion in Cyprus in 1974 and NATO did nothing to prevent the invasion.

  21. Jaska P

    Even though I am leaning left politically, I think this Tsipras is not a realistic politician. The ratio of Greek debt to GDP is 187.54%. In that situation you simply can not just sit back and wait…

  22. Paul X

    Whatever Catherine

    The Anti-US conspiricy theories are getting a bit tedious now, if it wasn’t for the US Europe would be either under the Jackboot or Hammer and Sickel by now……though from some of the rhetoric on here the latter option seems to be what some people desire

    And I never actually said I was against a higher rate of tax, I just believe it is merely a populist policy to appease the working class, I certainly don’t think it would bring in any economy changing sums of revenue

  23. Mia L

    I’m all with you Catherine Benning!

    You have my support Alexis Tsipras, the EU of today needs hope and solidarity between people of Europe, not with bankers or the political elite who thinks competitiveness and austerity are the answers to the financial crisis. I’m impressed by your achievements in Greece, and think you would be a President that could restore the dignity and relevance of the European Commission.

    The EU should in my view work to provide all people with the essentials: free healthcare and education for all, salaries that you can live on, solidarity and places where people can meet and discuss our common future, like how to cope with the climate challenge. The most significant importance of the EU for ordinary citizens is the free movement for people, and this needs to be defended while in the same time combating social dumping of workers’ rights and salaries.

    Let’s build an EU for the people of Europe, not the European companies and banks. Simple as that :).

    • klaus

      moi aussi je pense que Alexis Tsipras est l’homme qu’il faut.
      “Nous votons pour nos rêves et pour nos droits. Nous votons pour la vie.” Syriza.

  24. klassen

    I agree with Catherine Benning , we should be re-nationalising healthcare, railways etc, but theres bigger fish in the tank.
    Almost all central banks around the globe are owned by one untouchable family and like it or not we pay them interest for printing our money and loans and so on.
    Bill Gates could be thier butler or gardner, they rule and run the show and they can do this by holding the purse strings. The Kennedys wanted to let the goverment print its own money, but the privately owned federal reserve bank would have no part of it. The Kennedys actually managed to print some 10 and 20 dollar bills before it was stopped.
    Its a bit strange that all hi ranking europhiles all belong to this same group (Bilderbergers) and the fact remain that the ecb is owned by the same people whom own the american federal reserve bank/bank of england , the german banks and you can go on.
    I hope this Alexis Tsipras kicks some europhile ass ,his intentions are good and im with him , but im afraid the powers that be will make this man look like a donkey. Its the Rothschilds whom call the shots around the globe, they hold the purse strings.
    Its a hard fact that all is not as it seems, politicians are used and bought and are actually nothing more than cheap messengers.
    A cleanup is desperately needed and it has to start at the top. We need to print our own money and send the banksters back to where they came from. As long as these people run the show things will only get worse, its history repeating itself.
    Billions are taken out of the economies of europe for the 1%.

    • Andrea Zorzetto

      Klassen, for me your conspirational theories are a bit exaggerate but I agree on two things:
      1) central bank should be democratically accountable and run by the governments
      2) the 1 % has been really successful in the last decades in taking money out of society for themselves, mainly through rent-seeking. Most of their added wealth was
      a redistribution from the bottom to the top, not new value added to the economy

  25. Dude

    Half of this is merely Greek politics. I feel myself compelled to recall you we are talking about *Europeans* elections. Tsipras “measures” could easily sound appealing to a crisis struck Greek population, but they will fail to address people all over the rest of Europe. Except for Spain, maybe Italy (but trust me, I’m Italian and I hardly think so), perhaps somewhere in East Europe, no one is really going to understand this stuff. It looks like Schulz programme, but devoided of rationality, realism and credibility. 75% wealth tax, really? Francois Hollande, anyone? Not to speak about the remaining – withdrawing from Nato, come on guys. Can anyone see how just about NOTHING in this programme is actually doable at European level? Has anyone a vague knowledge of European prerogatives and functioning? I guess no. I guess Tsipras neither, according to all this. Let’s be serious. You want an anti-austerity stance, well, vote for Schulz. Splitting votes around is the good solution to boost anti-euros and conservatives negotiating power.

  26. jeanmi

    Citizen revolution in Europe with Alexis TSIPRAS !

  27. Jeanmi

    Citizen revolution in Europe with Alexis TSIPRAS.

  28. Wihlelm

    He’s the only candidate who can Change Europe. We have to make it better for the people, not for the financy stystem.
    Il est le seul candidat qui peut changer l’Europe. Nous devons la rendre meilleur pour les peuples, pas pour le système financier.
    Er ist der Einiger, der das Europa wechseln kann. Wir müssen es besser für die Völker und nicht für das Gesellschaft machen.

    • Pietro Moroni

      I do not agree. Schulz can and want to change Europe too.

      Pas d’acord. Schulz peut et veut changer l’Europe aussi.

  29. Lucian

    This is the only candidate able to fight against the dominant corporations and the markets. Since Europe really needs a „hard reset”, I will definitely join the ranks of those who will vote for Alexis and European Left.

  30. Gerard Domínguez

    A good choice for all those seeking social justice, redistribution and de-financialization of economy. Jobs, Equality and Solidarity. No doubt: Sipras is the one who should be appointed as President of the Commission!

  31. Yannis

    This guy is a candidate for the top executive position in the EU and at the same time a candidate for the top executive position in Greece. His candidacy is not about the EU. He is just trying to improve his political profile as he rallies the Greeks to bring him to power in the shaken country. It is a shame he was even considered for nomination.

  32. Kostas Camus

    First of all many of the things I’ll say will sound irrelevant, because you know, political apathy is a trend and when you try to poke things a bit deeper you sound passé. So if you want a quick and media-like post to read this isn’t the one for you.
    First of all, the concerns about radical change being unrealistic, are absolutely unrealistic. When history has been so kind to us and repeatedly laugh at our faces we dare and have the tenacity to deny its lessons. It was obviously unrealistic for ancient Athenians to elect their leaders. And I ask you me fair sire, is it possible to live WITHOUT slaves? And who would do all the work? But then again some filthy peasants and commoners could never, EVER overthrow a Bourbonais, could they? Would the great JP Morgan- who famously chained his workers to the machines in order not to leave the workplace for anything- agree to an 8-hour work day and paid vaccations? Well, those things aside, those routy females will never be able to cast a single vote and will stay at their homes forever, God Bless!
    I can give literaly hundreds other examples but the point is simple. Whatever seems laughable today is universally accepted in the future. As Schopenhauer put it, all truth passes through three stages. First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as being self-evident. To be so solipsistically self-involved to think that human progress willl somehow, for whatever reason stop in your own lifetime is a common misjudgement of the past generations, but unacceptable today if you consider the vast amount of information you have at out hands.
    So once again, it’s unrealistic to be a politcal pragmatist. Life…finds…a way.
    Now about Tsipras and ihis party, SYRIZA.
    I see two opinions here, and I think once again of the outstanding Noam Chomsky about the ideological filters in our time. This conversation revolves around a central point with two sides that fight fiercely each other, although they are very similar in reality: “Is Tsipras’ radicality reasonable?”
    The real question here is: “Is Tsipras radical?”
    Let’s see. He argues that the EU, the central institution of decision making in Europe should continue to exist, but, vaguely calls for “a change of direction in it”.
    His speach in US universities and his PMs have reaffirmed what we all know in Greece:That SYRIZA doesn’t plan to make drastic changes.It doesn’t plan to rattle some cages, it doesn’t plan to harm but-as a central figure in SYRIZA, Dragasakis said- to augment the profitabilty of big businesses in Greece. His party voted the same way as the Socialists in the European Parliament, 90% of the time. Stathakis, another key player in SYRIZA said that only about 5% of the Greek debt can be written off. Tens of other examples too.
    I don’t expect you to yell “He’s right then!” and I don’t expect any conservative, liberal or social democrat to agree with me. All I’m saying is, he is not threatening, he is not revolutionary, he is your run-of-the-mill centrist, and not the fervent anti-capitalist the reactionary media are trying to prove him to be.

    • Pietro Moroni

      totally agree. Some people are just terrorized that their own party may not win.

  33. mihai

    Some of you think that communism is great fun. Please feel free to visit the former communist EU countries to get an image about it. And if you think that state control over business is better for everyone, guess what, it is just a powerful source of social control and dictatorship.

    • Pietro Moroni

      I’m not communist but I think that business’ control over state is worse.

  34. Eva Skoudaropoulou

    I went through many of the above messages – reactions and I was not surprised especially by the negative -almost in some cases- insulting ones. I feel that there is no other option for Europe than A. Tsipras. He may be considered and characterised as inexperienced, a populist, a demagogue etc but what kind of Europe have we experienced so far? Certainly, not united, not equal, not democratic enough. Those who are the “officials in E.U.” have been proving continuously that they just care for money, power, profits. They have clearly taken side; the one against all the rest of us. So, yes, Tsipras HAS TO BE ELECTED as this may be the only opportunity left for the Europe we (or at least most of us) have dreamt of. That Europe belonging to the people, a democratic Europe. After all, that change reveals passion, enthusiasm, new logic and I love the challenge.

  35. G.DANIILIDIS

    A.Tsipras is the only hope for A Europe of humans.Inexperienced in serving market vultures and experienced in serving citizens and legality in E.U. with a team of many prominent professors and public figures capable of doing the good work that needs Europe.

  36. Ioannis

    Alexis tsipras is the hope for a better Europe
    Europe of freedom and democracy
    Merkels Europe isn’t our dream

  37. Ondrej Kusnierik

    No! I had been living under the communist dictatorship several decades, their rule was based on the harsh and cruel violence. Never more!

  38. Arturo

    Lets just agree on something – Communism has failed EVERY TIME and at EVERY ATTEMPT. Largest scale like Soviet Union and smallest scale like Cuba and anything in between. I like the idea but Fiction should stay that, fiction… he will fail or he will get killed by soime unhappy Greek person who thinks that Commies have robbed his small business, wich they will…

  39. Nicos Zolotariof

    European common culture has not been based or constructed on common language, but rather on common principles like humanitarianism, social and welfare rights, respect of different identities – despite outside Europe. The so called European culture shares a good deal with the grekoroman hereditary, the rennaisance and the ideals of the french revolution. Old fashioned / traditional communist deriving from the soviet union has nothing to do with radical left, whose principles have been pro-democratic and anti-totalitarian (a major critique of stalinism and the Soviet Union since the late 50′s and the 60′s). Radical Left, today is a direct “descendant” of pro-democratic and egalitarian ideals against the late neo-conservative and economic neo-liberalism since Thatcher in the UK. Today, it aims at a more democratic and more economically just restructuring of the EU, with a precise look on the highly important issues of unemployment, poverty, environment, public and private debt crisis, democratic decision-making and participation, throughout Europe, to name only a few issues in the RL agenda.

  40. Niko

    QUESTION: IF Tsipras is Pro-EU and wants to stay in the EU, then why does it matter? It’ll be the same Greece for years to come. Can someone tell me what I’m missing with his candidacy?

  41. apostolos

    there is no relation between Alexis Tsipras and communism as we knew it. Some “democratic” european countries like Greece today are more similar with North Corea. Tsipa’s left coalition SYRIZA has real democratic culture! A.P., SYRIZA member

  42. Nick

    As I can see, most insulting comments here are from Greeks. I am not surprised, one of them is candidate with neoliberals in greece, as was mentioned above….
    I was not even a voter of Syriza last decates, but what i can say for sure is that Alexis does not leave in ultra expensive Athens suburbs like other party leaders in Greece do, didn’t study in MIT or Harvard but in Greek University (his wife did also), didn’t “inherit” a heavy political name like “Papandreou”, “Mitsotakis”, “Karamanlis” and is one of the few greek party leaders at the moment that can take a walk in the center of Athens without the risk people attack him – at least with words… So maybe he can see and feel Greek citizen’s problems better.
    I agree with Apostolos that Syriza is not and never was a pure Communist party, but a left party wanted greece in Europe. But as Tsipras states, this is not a “dogma” at all cost.
    Biggest problem with greek politicians is not what they state or promise to voters, but what they actually do after they are elected. Time will show for Tsipras…
    As for him not spoke English, he can but not fluently and has bad accent. Having 60 seconds to express himself for each question, i believe he made the right decision speak his native language.

  43. Janar

    Cant believe the support of a communist in 21st century!
    amazingly stupid people.
    I guess its true that history repeats itself.

  44. Ali Smith

    I have a very precise question: how do I vote for Alexis Tsipras on Thursday, as an ordinary voter in the Northwest constituency of England.

  45. Ali Smith

    Heh. In which case (though I guess it’s a bit too late now) I’d like to ask for information if it’s possible to request registration in a constituency/ country where one’s chosen party is represented, in the event that one is effectively disenfranchised by no representation at all at home?!

  46. Postman

    At last, a left wing candidate who believes in initiating change. His powers are limited but we can believe in change. Thank you Mr Tsipras.

  47. Leonidas Fourlas

    To begin with, anyone who idolizes Che Guevara to the point of having his portrait hanging in his office is a concrete testimonial of an extreme, left-wing communist. Not that that’s bad, but I have not seen it work to the benefit of rank and file citizens in any country. Mother of all Russia failed with it. Cuba’s citizens have been suffering for decades under it and even China’s commitment to a communist government couldn’t survive without reaching far into the caverns of “capitalism.” On the other hand, it is gratifying to see new, young blood step up and offer enthusiasm and leadership. Greece has suffered for many, many years from corruption, theft, lazy, self serving politicians, and grafters all at the expense of the Greek citizenry. They have prostituted the government and the citizens of Greece have been suffering and paying for decades. Greece needs change without a doubt. But change can only be successful with carefully planned solutions to the problems at hand. I HAVE NOT HEARD OF ANY SUCH PLANS FROM ANY POLITICAL PARTIES NOR FROM THEIR LEADERS. Talk is cheap and we get much of that but action is lacking. I envy Tsipras for his zeal but dealing with a problem so deeply rooted that has engulfed Greece and its people can not be solved by communist doctrine. The Euro-zone is a great thing……….for Germany. I believe the solution points to exit from the Euro-zone but that is only the beginning of the plan and clearly not the total solution. Perhaps we should look to copy Israel’s model. They are independent a not involved with anyone but their own progress and well being through innovations, and exports and they have been very successful. There is one primary difference between Israelis and Greeks however that needs to be noted; the Israelis are a united team working together whereas Greeks are fragmented and self serving.

    • ancylostomiasis

      Thats very reasonable comments. I have never been having difficulties with man of Communism like any other man of religion. A man with belief is a man with principles. The problem is what all these ideological radicals is delusional. Eventually they either fell betrayed by the reality, or they betray what they believe.

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