|"Tsipras, you dress as crappily as you 'govern'"|
What Greek voters might not have expected was the first big reaction to Tsipras's maverick streak would be all about his sartorial choices. As soon as the 40-year-old was sworn in as prime minister, people began asking one question over and over again. Where is his tie?Their excuse is that they are no part of the "political class" (whatever that means):
It didn't go unnoticed. When Martin Schulz, head of the European parliament, met with the Greek leader last week, reporters saw him apparently making a comment on the lack of tie to Tsipras. According to the Associated Press, French finance minister Michel Sapin also made some kind of similar gesture when he met the new Greek leader.
There's no codified protocol for attire during meetings like these: European leaders are simply more used to seeing their peers wearing ties. But given that the entire Greek government can be seen without ties at points, it looks as if the ministers are trying to convey a deliberate political message.
So what lies behind the new Greek political classes rejection of ties? At first, Tsipras told reporters that he may never wear a tie, a comment that played into finance minister Yanis Varoufakis's idea that Greece's new leaders were "reluctant" politicians who simply want to fix Greece's problems: They were average guys, not of the political class.This is of course nonsense. Just as you wouldn't show up at a formal wedding wearing bermuda shorts and a tank top, you must look the part when meeting with Eurocrats. Not wearing a tie is a sign of flippancy, and even more so when the persons you're talking to are your creditors to the tune of hundreds of billions of euros. The halfway step of wearing business suits without ties doesn't cut it at all--you might as well show up in ponchos and Megadeth T-shirts.
|Finance Minister Varoufakis looks even more ridiculous.|