At Greece's last general election in 2009 Golden Dawn, whose members use the Nazi salute and whose party symbol is an adapted swastika, polled fewer than 20,000 votes nationwide. Now as the country goes to the polls on Sunday, national politics more closely resemble those of the embattled area.Fascism is on the rise among the Greek youth. And it isn't very surprising. Over half of Greece's youth are unemployed - paving way for nationalist political sects to pin Greece's problems on foreigners.
A fascist Greece, while concerning, would not pose a daunting threat to international security, and they would almost surely be thrown out of the EU. However, if these political trends were to gain more popularity, it would not pose well for investor confidence.
I think the Greek government needs to focus on short-term policies that will give Greek youth some support. Of course, living in the age of austerity, there isn't much room for creative solutions.
One proposal would be lowering the minimum wage. As you can see in the graph below, the minimum wage has risen by about 300 euro over the past decade. (I'm not even going to get into what's going on in Ireland.)
Greek youth need jobs, even if they don't pay well. It'd help companies hire low-skilled youth if their wages were lowered to market levels.
There are strong relationships between high unemployment and radical political activity. Will lowering the minimum wage employ all youth? Definitely not. But it's a policy that could help stem off growing Nazi power. If the government isn't prepared to make these changes, they're going to have some tough coworkers in a year or two.