The case of the full rent subsidy for Alternate Labour Minister Rania Antonopoulou confirms the adage that all that is legal is not necessarily moral. This is especially true for the members of a government that makes ethics its banner, and claims to be superior in that regard.
When you constantly point the finger at your political opponents, when you boast that you are made of different mettle, and when your main political argument is that you are different from the old political system, you are obliged to demonstrate that in practice.
The arrogance of power is very costly, especially if you constantly claim to be incorruptible, above it all, and the judge of all else. It is in small and otherwise insignificant incidents that the credibility, morals, and consequence of politicians are often proven. It is not the first time that Syriza cadres find themselves exposed over actions, omissions, or exploiting their power.
A government that came to power promising that its paramount concern is protecting the poor and vulnerable, cannot legislate to the benefit of its privileged cadres. The assumption is that, especially for the left, politics is not a profession, but rather an offering, and a struggle for a better society. Beyond their wealth, Ms. Antonopoulou, and her husband, Economy Minister Dimitris Papadimitriou, had absolutely no need to request a rent subsidy.
The same stands true for other ministers, who appear to have been receiving the same rent subsidy. When thousands of citizens are being tried, and when associate professors receive a 700 euro monthly salary, and must move from city to city, it is a provocation for ministers to receive subsidies and stipends beyond their salary.
That provocation is even greater, when it comes from members of a party such as Syriza, which supposedly came to power with the moral advantage of the left as a vehicle. Very soon, however, it belied the hopes that it had cultivated. It proved that, as a rule, power and its servants are interested above all in feathering their nest, instead of the interests that they were called upon to defend.