Like rats on a sinking ship, the Greek prime minister Lucas Papademos seeks his exit before the total and complete destruction of Greece.

If you prefer a different analogy, like Pontius Pilate, prime minister Papademos washes his hands of this sordid affair.

The New York Times reports Snap Elections for Greek Parliament Are Set for Early May

Greece’s interim prime minister, Lucas Papademos, called for snap elections on Wednesday, opening the way for a contest that promises to be the most fiercely fought in decades but which might not yield a definitive result, potentially putting the debt-racked country’s international bailout plan in jeopardy.

In a televised address to the nation on Wednesday night, Mr. Papademos said he had gained the approval of President Karolos Papoulias to dissolve Parliament and go to elections on May 6.

“The current government has completed the key task that it was assigned,” he said. “A new government, with a fresh popular mandate, will be tasked with continuing the effort to reconstruct the economy.”

Public anger has been swelling against the politicians who approved austerity measures and are perceived as having created the dysfunctional state that created the conditions for the debt crisis.

Opinion polls show that the two parties in the interim government have lost major support. A poll conducted by the firm Public Issue for Skai television and the Kathimerini daily newspaper showed the conservative New Democracy party holding on to its lead with 19 percent and the Socialists edging up to 14.5 percent. The Coalition of the Radical Left (known as Syriza) would garner 13 percent in elections, the survey showed, with the more moderate Democratic Left winning 12 percent and the Communist Party 11 percent.

A new center-right party called Independent Greeks, which opposes the government’s austerity drive, is shown to be polling at 11 percent.

Some smaller parties were teetering on the 3 percent threshold for entering Parliament, given the survey’s margin of error of plus or minus 2.9 percentage points. The poll, conducted by telephone, surveyed 1,226 people nationwide from April 3 to 9.

Some expect that the elections will produce a hung Parliament and require a second round of voting.

This is not a case of “get while the gettin’ is good” but rather “get while the gettin’ is still possible at all.”

Mike “Mish” Shedlock
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