And what about Greece? Is the Greek crisis quite separate from that of the rest of the eurozone? A meltdown of our own making?

, 17/04/2011

Regular commentator Jerry Goldstein sent me a comment on yesterady’s post, the one entitled It’s the (German) Banks, stupid! His main point is that, whatever Europe does to sort out its mess (regarding public debt and banking troubles), Greece finds itself in a different ball game. The country, Jerry, argues is in a state of […]

It's the (German) banks, stupid!

, 16/04/2011

Or what’s behind Germany’s hesitant statements on Greek debt restructuring, Ireland’s move against subordinated bondholders and the ECB’s stance on interest rates

The Trouble with Humans: Why is labour special and especially targeted at a time of crisis- Part B

, 13/04/2011

Continuing on the theme of two days ago, in today’s post I delve a little more deeply into the astonishing peculiarity of the labour contract: the contract between employer and employee. Readers who have not read the earlier post (click here) may find it hard to follow. Hope you enjoy. (The text below is based […]

For whom the bells toll: Why the foretold Greek debt restructure will bring Spain into the mire which will, in turn, boost Ireland’s pain

, 12/04/2011

Despite angry denials, the trajectory that started in Greece is heading for Madrid and carries the cumulative weight of sovereign and banking insolvency that will further immiserate Ireland.

The Trouble with Humans: Why is labour special and especially targeted at a time of crisis- Part A

, 09/04/2011

In an earlier post I argued that we need to examine carefully how labour is turned into a ritualistic scapegoat in response to an economic crisis that has nothing whatsoever to do with high wages and over-generous conditions. Today I begin a series of posts that try to shed light on the deeper causes; on […]

Socrates drank the conium – but the convulsions will be felt everywhere

, 08/04/2011

In the Theatre of the Absurd the playwright utilises the bizarre, an element of   surprise, copious vagueness and frequent non-sequiturs, blended in with dramatic shifts in mood and some great confrontations, in order to throw helpful light on our commonplace, ordinary lives. In contrast, Europe is writing a different script. One that I tend to […]

Scapegoating labour: A favourite pastime during a downturn

, 06/04/2011

Crises are the opportunists’ delight. Recall how a few minutes after the second airplane struck the World Trade Centre, a New Labour spin doctor sent a memo around encouraging various government departments to bring out ‘bad news’ stories, hoping that the fallout from New York would hide them from public view long enough to defuse […]

The Empire is Striking Back, gross failure continues to be handsomely rewarded, and the world economy struggles to find its footing without the Global Minotaur.

, 03/04/2011

That the Empire has struck back there is no doubt. Goldman Sachs’ Lloyd C. Blankfein just rewarded himself with $19 million bonus  for 2010: the year during which he appeared in front of a Senate Committee, a court , an SEC investigation revealing in full technicolor the great variety in which GS broke the law, manipulated […]

A fresh rationale for, and a new variant (Version 2.1) of, The Modest Proposal for Overcoming the Euro Crisis

, 24/03/2011

By Yanis Varoufakis and Stuart Holland, 24th March 2011 Introduction to the new version of the Modest Proposal (to go straight to Version 2.1 of the Proposal, click here) The response to our Modest Proposal Version 2.0, of 10th March, has been overwhelming with more than 100 thousand downloads within a few days. As if […]

George Soros sides with the basic tenets of the Modest Proposal 2.0

, 22/03/2011

In yesterday’s FT, George Soros sided with two of three main policies in our Modest Proposal 2.0 and took a position largely in tune with our third policy. First, he agreed that the current euro crisis is significantly a banking crisis and, thus, adopted the policy (that the Modest Proposal 2.0 first made) that the […]

Too kind on Geithner? Stress tests and bank recapitalisation in the US and in Europe

, 18/03/2011

James Galbraith, in a private communication, raised a justified concern over my point that the US Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner imposed proper stress tests on the US banks in 2009 and proceeded with their recapitalisation – unlike the Europeans who are allowing Europe’s banks to be zombies for ever and ever. James told me that […]

How exactly did the US Treasurer, Tim Geithner, recapitalise US banks? A comparison with Europe's 'strategy'

, 18/03/2011

In my last post, I compared the US and the EU approach to the post-2008 banking crisis, suggesting that Europe perpetuates the zombie state of its banks. Here are relevant extracts from Chapter 7 of my forthcoming Global Minotaur:

What should we do with Europe's zombie banks?

, 16/03/2011

I think that regular readers  can predict my answer. It is the one that in fact any banker would, in a fit of honesty, give you: Non-performing loans must be deleted from the banks’ books. Same with derivatives that stand no chance of finding a market/buyer. These nonperforming paper assets weigh banks down and ensure […]

Tobin's tax and the parlous state of our European democracy

, 15/03/2011

Did you know that the Greek government managed, through heroic and brilliant bargaining, to extract from the latest Eurozone Summit an agreement that the Tobin tax will, at long last, see the light of day – at least in the eurozone? Well, nor did I. But apparently, this is precisely what happened, if the Greek […]

The ECB's new role, as foreshadowed in the Modest Proposal: Q&A with a reader

, 14/03/2011

In this post I continue my Q&A with Manos Makrakis on our Modest Proposal 2.0. Tomorrow I continue with some important points raised by Jan Toporowski. 

Breaking News: No Redemption for Greece, for Ireland or for Europe. And an interesting query regarding the ECB's role under the Modest Proposal

, 12/03/2011

Sad news from the EU summit (that the media are presenting as yet another ‘breakthrough’): Just  heard the news that our EU leaders are making progress in reaching an agreement on extending the Greek EU-IMF loan repayments by a few years and reducing the interest rates for Ireland by 1%. The possibility of allowing the […]

The Minotaur’s Global Legacy, Part E – The rise of China

, 08/03/2011

In today’s post I conlcude the region-by-region assessment of the impact of the Global Minotaur’s demise post-2008. Previsously, we delved into the triangular relationship between Japan, East Asia and the USA, recalled Germany’s peculiar engagement with the rest of Europe (see here) and, lastly, re-visited the eurozone crisis.

The Minotaur’s Global Legacy, Part D – A brief history of a very European debacle

, 07/03/2011

The  region by region assessment of the impact of the Global Minotaur’s demise post-2008 today proceeds to an analysis of the eurozone crisis. Having just looked at the story of Germany’s European engagement (see here), and after having scrutinised the triangular relationship between Japan, East Asia and the USA), we are (I hope) ready for a […]

The Minotaur’s Global Legacy, Part C – Germany's Europe

, 06/03/2011

The  region by region assessment of the impact of the Global Minotaur’s demise post-2008 continues in today’s post  with a close look at Germany and its attempt to remould Europe in its image. (The last posts looked at developments in the triangular relationship between Japan, East Asia and the USA).

The Minotaur’s Global Legacy, Part B – Wounded tigers: Japan, America and the South East Asian crisis

, 05/03/2011

Today I continue with a region by region assessment of the impact of the Global Minotaur’s demise post-2008. The last post looked at Japan. This one focuses on the nexus between Japan, SE Asia and the USA

The Minotaur's Global Legacy, Part A: The Dimming Sun

, 03/03/2011

On 25th March, European leaders have promised us a comprehensive solution to the eurozone risis. I am not holding my breath but, at the same time, I am redrafting the Modest Proposal for resolving the crisis. It will appear in this blog next week. In the meantime, I return to my Global Minotaur theme. The […]

The Road to Bankruptocracy: How events since 2009 have led to a new mode of reproduction

, 02/03/2011

Today I am continuing the narrative of my forthcoming book  The Global Minotaur. The last post on the matter chronicled the Crash of 2008 (for all the previous posts on the Minotaur click this archive). My  chronicleended abruptly and arbitrarily toward the middle of 2009. It reads like a breathless horror story. Unlike its Hollywood equivalents, […]

Of Debts and Faultlines: Greece and the Euro Crisis in a Global Context

, 28/02/2011

On Thursday 24/2, a one day workshop was organised by the European Union Studies Centre and the National Seoul University (S. Korea) at the latter’s campus in Seoul. The title of the workshop was:  Crisis and the future of European Integration: Implications for Asia. I was honoured with an invitation to open the workshop. Here […]

The Crash of 2008 – lest we forget

, 26/02/2011

So far (see the category The Global Minotaur), we have seen examined the constituent parts of  the peculiar global surplus recycling mechanism of the second postwar phase (to which I have given the label Global Minotaur). We saw how it caused financialisation and the global imbalances that everyone is talking about today. Then, all of […]

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