Back in 1930, a policy pamphlet was published, one either inspired or even written by John Maynard Keynes. Its title: We Can Conquer Unemployment. We mobilised for war. Let us now mobilise for prosperity! Why is this relevant?
by Yanis Varoufakis and Stuart Holland Ever since the Crisis erupted, Europe’s leaders have reacted to the suggestion that eurobonds are sine qua non with a familiar repertoire of responses. First came denial of the need for eurobonds, coupled with a snub for those who proposed them. More recently, we witnessed depression at the realisation […]
Hour long radio interview (91.5FM WNYE New York, broadcasting across NY, NJ, CT, and PA) in which I discussed the euro crisis, explained why eurobonds are essential as long as they are not guaranteed by the eurozone’s member-states, and argued in favour of the continuing appeal of the Modest Proposal (click here for the Levy Institute […]
When Lenin alighted on 3rd April 1917 at Petrograd’s Finland Station, a train was set in motion that upstaged, and eventually overturned, the Mensheviks’ plan for an ‘evolutionary’ path from absolute Tsarism to some form of social democracy. Ironically, it took a Finnish social democrat (newly elected finance minister Jutta Urpilainen) to derail once and […]
In this half-hour interview (jump to 29′ 10”) Doug Henwood gave me an opportunity to lay bare the pieces of the euro crisis jigsaw puzzle but also to expand upon the inter-connections with the global crisis and its US menifestation in particular. Any comments?
Why Eurobonds are Essential and Fiscal Union a Folly (Or how to escape the equally untenable positions of German economists Thomas Straubhaar and Otmar Issing)
The context: In the middle of a mighty bushfire the fire brigade just held a summit between its chief fire fighters (Mrs Merkel and Mr Sarkozy) to discuss the importance of biodiversity, leaving the flames to destroy the forest. Italy and Spain are collapsing. The EFSF, the only institution that was set up to deal […]
George Soros, in his recent FT article, puts forward three proposals toward arresting the euro crisis. One and a half of these are spot on. The remaining (one and a half) range from the ill-thought to the catastrophic. Here is why I think this:
When the Modest Proposal argued, a year ago, in favour of a debt management system, for the eurozone as a whole, with the ECB at its centre, the general response was that it was a good idea containing a major flaw: the suggestion that the ECB issues its own eurobonds (for the purposes of financing […]
In a recent post (Why Italy? Why Spain? And why the EFSF’s size does not matter), I concluded with a question that readers keep asking: “If what you are saying is right, why are Europe’s leaders so committed to the current structure of the EFSF?” More generally, the world has been watching Europeans blundering incessantly […]
The Modest Proposal’s Most Controversial Recommendation Foreshadowed in the FT; plus Gordon Brown (former UK PM) and Sigmar Gabriel (SPD Chairman) adopting its main principles
In recent days, the Modest Proposal (click here for the Levy Institute version) has received a fillip from three different sources: The FT’s Lex (who argues that the ECB may well have to issue its own bonds), Sigmar Gabriel (SPD’s Chairman) and Gordon Brown (the UK’s former PM).
The Minotaur in the Room: Announcing the London launch of my new book on the true causes of the ongoing global economic tumult – 1st September 2011
In London on Thursday 1st September at 18.30? Why not join us in the launch of The Global Minotaur at the Bookmarks bookshop , 1 Bloomsbury Street? Aditya Chakrabortty (of The Guardian) will introduce the book. (Click here for a pdf of the invitation) Meanwhile, here is a piece that sums up the reasons why this […]
Last Saturday, I was interviewd by Derek Bateman on BBC Radio Scotland. I post that interview here only because Derek put some poignant questions regarding the linkages between the EU and US crises and, more so, the irrationality of the EU’s approach (on which I shall have much more to say in an already promised […]
Manos Makrakis, a reader of this blog, has expressed strong reservations about the newfangled role that our Modest Proposal assigns to the European Central Bank (see Policy 1). His text appears below in full. Here are, in numbered points, my reply:
Italy and Spain are tumbling because one problematic structure (the European Financial Stability Fund, the EFSF) has been conjured up in order to prop up another problematic structure (the eurozone). The result is that both structures are reaching the end of their tether. Enlarging the newer of the two problematic structures (the EFSF) will not […]
Here is the transcript and video of my ABC TVextended intrerview on LATELINE regarding the recent Greek ‘rescue’ plan. Any comments? Transcript ALI MOORE, PRESENTER: Well just a short time ago I spoke to Yanis Varoufakis, an economist at Athens University. Yanis Varoufakis many thanks for talking to Lateline tonight. YANIS VAROUFAKIS, ECONOMIST, ATHENS UNIVERSITY: […]
Europe’s Faustian Bargain: On the latest attempt to resolve the Greek debt crisis and its repercussions
The Agreement reached yesterday by Europe’s political and financial elites is meant to tackle, once and for all, the Greek debt problem. Just as in May 2010 the idea was that intra-eurozone contagion could be prevented by ringfencing Greece (recall the first Greek bailout, the creation of the European Financial Stability Facility, the EFSF, and […]
Missive from the Libyan Sea: Thursday's meeting, if it takes place, will add to the litany of gross failures
Still on holidays, and still under-informed about the goings on (I just manage to read snippets of the news on my mobile phone, whenever a signal miraculously appears on its screen). And yet it seems certain that the Thursday EU summit (of which I got a brief whiff in a few tweets I stimbled upon), […]
This is, I warn you dear reader, no proper post. Written on a tiny inflatable boat off the southern Cretan coast, where my phone occasionally links up to civilised society, I manage to pick up signals from a predictably distressed Europe. Of these signals, two stuck out, emitted by two ministers of finance: Italy’s and […]
James Galbraith kindly sent me the following piece, commissioned by DW, with the premission to reproduce it here. It is both a timely and an astute piece entitled Unless it’s reformed, Europe’s project is doomed. Enjoy:
Extracts from an intervention, on the Modest Proposal and how best to avoid negative reactions to it (especially here in Greece) from George Momferratos. See also below for my response. What do readers think? Your input will be appreciated.
American Common Sense on Europe: The NYT largely adopting the logic of the Modest Proposal, and even Jeffrey Sachs making sympathetic noises
For some time the rest of the world has been finding it hard to follow the passionate infighting in the US over the federal budget. Only two years after Barrack Obama’s landslide, the United States became, effectively, ungovernable. The current standoff regarding the mystical (to non-Americans) debt ceiling causes a mixture of consternation and incredulity […]