To use it it would have to be prepared to lose it: Why Germany is not using its power to fix the euro

, 19/09/2011

Last week, on the Jeff Randall show (Sky News), we discussed the looming Greek default but, more importantly, the question of why is Germany dithering. Toward the end of the interview I tried to make the point that Europe’s tratedy is that those with the power to redesign, and in so doing fix, the eurosystem […]

Geithner Shunned: What the US Treasury Secretary said to the Europeans and how they shunned him at our collective peril

, 19/09/2011

Back in the era of unquestioned US hegemony, many Europeans (and I include myself) dreamed of the moment when our leaders would find it in their hearts publically to repudiate the heavy handed advice of a high ranking visiting American dignitary. This weekend, the dream came true. Only it turned out a terrible nightmare.

In Ireland

, 14/09/2011

If you are wondering why I have been keeping quiet this week it is because I am in Dublin on a series of talks, interviews and discussions through which I hope (a) to spread the word for the Modest Proposal and (b) to learn from this amazing small country’s experiences. Today’s (personal) highlight was meeting […]

Guest Post: Jerry Goldstein is sure of a Greek default, cannot see the eurozone breaking up but can see no way out of the mire either

, 12/09/2011

GUEST POST by Jerry Goldstein, ex City banker and regular correspondent of this blog I see the probability of Greece defaulting at 1, on a scale of zero to one. But I do not necessarily think this is sufficient to cause a breakup of the eurozone. Whilst a Greek default will cause volatility to spike […]

Can Germany save Europe without jeopardising its own finances? Most certainly! An interview with Vorwaerts, the SPD's official newspaper

, 11/09/2011

During August I was interviewed by Markus Schöning on behalf of Vorwaerts, the SPD’s official newspaper. Here is what I had to say (in German only).     Interview zur Eurokrise mit Yanis Varoufakis Europa als Dampfmaschine Markus Schöning • 09. September 2011 Eurobondes sinnvoll gestalten. Foto: Dr. Klaus-Uwe Gerhardt/pixelio.de Markus Schöning: Angesichts des verstärkten Engagements der Europäischen […]

Is Greece finished?

, 11/09/2011

In one sense Greece was finished the moment the Great Recession cut its growth rate (in the second quarter of 2009) from among the highest in Europe to almost zero.

On the newly established Council for the Future of Europe's Manifesto: An assessment

, 08/09/2011

A new think tank is in town with a heartfelt mission to save Europe. Its name: Council for the Future of Europe. It was set up recently by über-rich Nicolas Berggruen, a German entrepreneur who, commendably, is left dissatisfied by his billions and wants to spend part of them to create a better world. (See […]

Schauble, Keynes and a shadowy HM Treasury Official

, 08/09/2011

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?

Eurobonds: Not a question of ‘whether’ but one of ‘who will issue them’ and ‘who will back them’

, 05/09/2011

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) on the eurozone crisis and the Modest Proposal

, 29/08/2011

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 […]

To the Finland Station: The undoing of the Menshevik Approach to the Euro Crisis

, 27/08/2011

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 […]

The Euro Crisis Revisited: Radio interview with Doug Henwood for Behind the News, KPFA 94.1FM

, 22/08/2011

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)

, 17/08/2011

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 […]

On George Soros’ three recommendations: An assessment

, 15/08/2011

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:

Why the ECB must, for its own sake, issue its own eurobonds

, 13/08/2011

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 […]


, 12/08/2011

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

, 10/08/2011

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

, 09/08/2011

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 […]

On the US and EU debt crises: My ten minute Radio Scotland interview

, 08/08/2011

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 […]

What the Modest Proposal asks of the ECB: Responses to a reader’s criticisms

, 06/08/2011

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:

Why Italy? Why Spain? And why the EFSF’s size does not matter

, 04/08/2011

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 […]

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