What is it that defines a successful country? The wellbeing of the citizens, or the nation’s riches? The two are not the same.
Wellbeing: feeling loved and valued, health, happiness, contributing to society –these are the things that matter, that make us human. These do not come with national wealth but with equality and relationships – how people value and treat each other.
In the war, everyone was ‘in it together’ and although times were hard, apart from the obvious war wounds, people were healthy, valued and fulfilled. Society became much more equal. If Greece chooses to adopt a true attitude of unity (not like Cameron’s phony ‘Big Society’) where everyone looks out for each other, where those with more help out those with less – because they matter as fellow human beings – then Greece will thrive!
The worry is that Greece is so keen to stay in the “Euro” club that they will give up their wellbeing to do so. They are already feeling un-valued, un-loved and betrayed. They are dealing with institutions, but institutions don’t have a soul and don’t care about people, so why is Greece surprised. But they don’t have to shackle themselves to the rich man’s yoke to live well.
So long as there is food on the table and friends to eat it with, so long as their whole society unites in a common cause, they will thrive. But if they choose to be victims of the wealthy, if their society chooses to take what they can as individuals then they will indeed suffer. The richer Greeks will be materially fine but the poor will hurt, health for all will worsen, there will be riots and unrest, and productivity will reduce too – the signs are already there.
Greece is at a crossroads, but it’s not the crossroads reported in the press. It is a crossroads of its citizen’s attitude to each other. They can lead the world in showing how to be successful without being serfs to the economic barons. I hope that they choose wisely.