A grim assessment of Europe's Social Democratic Parties: video

Interview (Part 4) that I gave a few weeks ago to the Scottish branch of Unite – the union. A big thank you to Peter Welsh and Andrew Brady. Below I copy their description of this interview: “Unite Scotland’s fourth and final instalment in the Varoufakis series puts focus on the failings of social democratic political parties, the lessons we need to learn from history and the urgent need for a collective European left-wing response. Yanis pulls no punches in a frank and brutally honest assessment of how social democratic politicians in Greece contributed to the unfolding European crisis; arguably actions that were or still are consistent in all self-styled social democratic parties across the European continent, including the UK. We believe this is a fascinating interview crystallising why a collective left wing response across Europe,  pursuing a new social democratic agenda, is absolutely crucial to avoid making the same mistakes of the 1920s and 1930s.”


  • Yani:

    In case you need any food and shelter in the now assured persecution by PASOK agents, you can always use our house.

    We are generally friendly and we have wireless internet. 🙂

  • Dear Yanis,
    thanks for the some personal views that you share in this interview. Couldn’t that be a reason, that Ms.Merkel won’t follow your proposal, while the SPD is more open to it?

    Is it a matter of ideology after all?

    We tried to let ideology out of the discussion. But it seems people have different goals, different visions, what a better world should look like. Isn’t the problem of Ms.Merkel the fact, that she and some parts of the public, fear, that by following your proposal the will be locked-in a society model, they do not envision?

    Do you see a way of getting ideology completely out of this discussion?

    • @Xeno: No. It is the difference between oppostion and being in power. As opposition you can always talk about things that you would like to have or that sound good and make the government look bad. As the government you cannot go a route which their surpreme court has explicitly blocked now for several times.

  • Congratulations for this excellent talk, and you really have hit the nail on the head with the adjective “evil”. What is going on here in Greece and the way pain is being inflicted (and by a “socialist” party too!) is nothing short of evil.

  • @xeno how can one leave ideology out of politics? How can one then leave politics out of economy?

    • Amalia, while trying to make sense out of what I read about our financial problems, the most irritating question for me is, whom to believe.
      When even scientists have totally different positions on the same matter, even concerning the diagnosis of the problem, then I feel disorientated. I understand that the ways to solve the problem, can be a political question, but what about the diagnosis itself?
      Yes, I very much want to know, what is scientific research and fact and what is ideology and what politics. Every sincere scientist should want to draw this line between science and ideology clearly. But I am not seing this happening. It is the greatest scandal of all in this story to me, that even the scientists do not seem to be interested to draw this line between science and ideology.

      I truly wish Yanis Varoufakis success in his campaign. I just think, if he could persuade that he is not pursuing a “socialist” agenda, with his proposal, but his proposal is clearly based on undisputable facts and pragmatic considerations.

    • Economics is not a science, for all the Economists attempts to build it up as such with models and matrixes etc. Economics is ideology par excellence. Answer the question, what is the economy for? To achieve maximisation of profits? Or to improve the well being of the population as a whole? Economics is ideology and all attempts to portray this human activity as some kind of science disconnected from the way we live or want to live are dangerously disorientating and pernicious.

  • Achilles’ heel

    Yanis, i owuld like to add another perspective, but let me start by saying that the labour party in Ireland can only be described as a bunch of spineless traitors. contrary to their pre election statements, they too execute marching orders of banksters, nothing else, not surprisingly though as the people now in government sit in the house for decades, just on different benches, but being fed from the same trough.

    You know, while watching your video, a spontaneous thought has crossed my mind, and while i am aware that it is very provocative and easily dismissed as yet another conspiracy soaked mindset, I would not dismiss it too quickly.

    In 1999 Greece was refused membership in the Euro for they failed to meet criteria, Goldman Sachs succeeded in 2001 to install this Achilles heel phenomenon and Greece joined the EMU….

    Think about it!

    Taking US grand area interests into account, this line of thought is not too far fetched i would think. From the perspective of a power that strives to maintain global dominance, an interesting thought.

    The reason that savings were attractive in dollars was mainly to be seen for it’s oil based stability, correct?

    October 30th, 2000:

    Hussein starts selling oil in Euro.

    UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) — A U.N. panel on Monday approved Iraq’s plan to receive oil-export payments in Europe’s single currency after Baghdad decided to move the start date back a week.

    Members of the Security Council’s Iraqi sanctions committee said the panel’s chairman, Dutch Ambassador Peter van Walsum, would inform U.N. officials on Tuesday of the decision to allow Iraq to receive payments in euros, rather than dollars.

    December 14th 2003:

    Three years later, Saddam Hussein was captured, iraq was devastated, and Halliburton and others stood ready to reap the rewards of the unjust attack on Iraq.

    February 17th, 2008:

    Iran opens the IOB, Iranian oil bourse and sells mainly in Euro and Yen.

    (AP) Iran, OPEC’s second-largest producer, has completely stopped conducting oil transactions in U.S. dollars, a top Oil Ministry official said Wednesday, a concerted attempt to reduce reliance on Washington at a time of tension over Tehran’s nuclear program and suspected involvement in Iraq.

    “The dollar has totally been removed from Iran’s oil transactions,” Oil Ministry official Hojjatollah Ghanimifard told state-run television Wednesday. “We have agreed with all of our crude oil customers to do our transactions in non-dollar currencies.”

    Iranian oil officials have said previously that they were shifting oil sales out of the dollar into other currencies, but Ghanimifard indicated Wednesday that all of Iran’s oil transactions were now conducted in either euros or yen.

    “In Europe, Iran’s oil is sold in euros, but both euros and yen are paid for Iranian crude in Asia,” said Ghanimifard.

    Last year USA sold weapon systems, according to SIPRI in Stockholm the single largest weapons deal ever, for 75 billion USD to the Saudis.

    Well, the latest news concerning Iran are somewhat fitting this picture.


    • The international power game is unfolding rapidly the last months . Near Cyprus , a huge russian airplane carrier just arrived with escort . French frigates are patrolling the area around area 12- gas platform . Israel air force has been already established in Cyprus . This point certainly attracts a lot of attention .

      Just a small comment , the Achilles heel is in the design of Euro . Greece played the role of the weakest link . If Greece was not a member of the Eurozone , the crisis would have unfolded in the next weakest link .

    • If Greece was not a member of the Eurozone , the crisis would have unfolded in the next weakest link .


  • I would like your opinion on this article .


    I would also want your comment on this part by a post of Lapavitsa in guardian

    ” Last July Greece agreed on an exchange of old for new debt that would reduce its debt to banks by 21%. Yet it also had to provide massive collateral guarantees to banks, with the result that its total debt might actually increase. Even so, many banks have not accepted this incredibly favourable deal, hoping instead for full repayment”

    We are not economists. Without your voice , how can we be protected?
    We appreciate your insights in international affairs but …

    Please speak up !
    People need your opinion on on-going matters .

    There is no point in blaming PASOK for showing two faces and serve only one master .
    We need certain criticism on certain matters !

    By characterizing as crime what the government of PASOK is doing right now is not enough .

    Please , speak up what they are actually doing . We don’t know . Main media are presenting the events however they want !

    • A similar scenario is now on play in Greece . “Greek Political System” wants to finish the transition to a totalitarian german control before the uprising of greek people .

      The final battle for control will take place before the euro group meeting. This is our time to act .

      I would like to inform Dutch-Jack that the schedule he posted is not correct .In Greece , we are working on Saturday and Sunday too .

      In fact employees of at least five ministries are working overtime , during the night , to guard the ministries against troika’s control .
      And they are working without being paid .

      Soon there would be an endgame without bloodshed .

      Scenarios of civil war and dictatorship are leaked by Brussels , not Greece . Here the consensus is ultra wide .

      Revolutionary Greetings to All Europe and many thanks for their support .

  • Schedule Of Greek Strikes For The Upcoming Week


    State media are to continue strike action until Thursday. The Panhellenic Seafarers Association’s strike until Tuesday will affect all ferry services. Lawyers are continuing to strike until Wednesday. Customs employees walk off the job for 24 hours. Tax office, Social Security Foundation (IKA) and local authority employees continue rolling 48-hour strikes.


    Railway workers start a three-day strike, until Thursday, affecting the Proastiakos suburban rail and the metro service to Athens Airport. Journalists hold a 24-hour strike. Port workers start a 48-hour strike.


    The country’s main labor unions, GSEE and ADEDY, begin a 48-hour strike. There will be no flights or taxis. Retail stores and banks will remain closed too.


    No flights or taxis, with public transport also likely to be disrupted as industrial action by GSEE and ADEDY continues.

    Source: Ekathimerini

    Schedule in the Netherlands: Go to work Monday to Friday

  • Mr Varoufakis was to attend a debate confronting a popular member of the government , along with other economists . As usual , it was decided at the last minute , that Mr Varoufakis had nothing to contribute to this debate … .

    • Actually it is true. Isn’t it?

      Prof. Varoufakis really has nothing to contribute.
      And other people like him.

      They are totally worthless in todays world’s scene.

      Who needs them?

      Got it?

    • It’s not the first time that such a thing happens . Some time ago , Mr Varoufakis had posted in this blog a statement addressed to journalists : Don’t call me for interviews unless you have asked your superiors first.

      This political establishment must go ASAP !

      It’s a shame that Varoufakis is giving interviews all over the world , but he is not allowed to speak in greek public media .

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