In his keynote address and major news conference at the Thessaloniki International Fair over the weekend, main opposition SYRIZA leader Alexis Tsipras demonstrated that he has learned nothing from his party’s stinging defeat in the 2019 general elections.

He declared that, “We are the par excellence party of self-criticism.” Yet, he acknowledged no errors and offered no indication that he has abandoned his populist past.

Unrepentant, he once again unleashed charges against the government and announced handouts.

Even his slogan “New Beginning” was expropriated from PASOK, as was the green colour of the background when he was delivering his speech, and his closing phrase, “So that we can raise the sun above Greece”.

Meanwhile, he is a champion in the area of demolition. He pledged that if he comes to power he will return to the past. He said that he will rescind a number of laws passed by the current government, including Kostis Hatzidakis’ new labour law, and that he will reinstate the old, low minimum grade for university admissions.

Mr. Tsipras, however, is not good at synthesis and building. His stated pledges were vague, contradictory, and not costed.

As for his commitment that he will form a “progressive government”, it comes across as provocative when coming from a person who for four years ruled with the [right-wing populist] Independent Greeks party as his junior coalition partner.

Alexis Tsipras underlined that SYRIZA is a party in motion.

It does indeed move in various directions, even toward the 4.13 percent of the popular vote with which SYRIZA started out years ago.

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