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Greece’s Perpetual Crisis

, 14/02/2017

  ATHENS – Since the summer of 2015, Greece has (mostly) dropped out of the news, but not because its economic condition has stabilized. A prison is not newsworthy as long as the inmates suffer quietly. It is only when they stage a rebellion, and the authorities crack down, that the satellite trucks appear. The […]

A New Deal to Save Europe

, 14/02/2017

LONDON – “I don’t care about what it will cost. We took our country back!” This is the proud message heard throughout England since the Brexit referendum last June. And it is a demand that is resonating across the continent. Until recently, any proposal to “save” Europe was regarded sympathetically, albeit with skepticism about its […]

A New Deal to Save Europe – Project Syndicate op-ed

, 23/01/2017

LONDON – “I don’t care about what it will cost. We took our country back!” This is the proud message heard throughout England since the Brexit referendum last June. And it is a demand that is resonating across the continent. Until recently, any proposal to “save” Europe was regarded sympathetically, albeit with skepticism about its […]

Greece’s perpetual crisis will not end via one-off handouts. It will end only when Athens ends the perpetual lie.

, 22/12/2016

ATHENS – Since the summer of 2015, Greece has (mostly) dropped out of the news, but not because its economic condition has stabilized. A prison is not newsworthy as long as the inmates suffer quietly. It is only when they stage a rebellion, and the authorities crack down, that the satellite trucks appear. [To read […]

Trump, the Dragon, and the Minotaur – Project Syndicate op-ed

, 28/11/2016

  ATHENS – If Donald Trump understands anything, it is the value of bankruptcy and financial recycling. He knows all about success via strategic defaults, followed by massive debt write-offs and the creation of assets from liabilities. But does he grasp the profound difference between a developer’s debt and the debt of a large economy? […]

The Universal Right to Capital Income – Project Syndicate op-ed

, 31/10/2016

  ATHENS – The right to laziness has traditionally been only for the propertied rich, whereas the poor have had to struggle for decent wages and working conditions, unemployment and disability insurance, universal health care, and other accoutrements of a dignified life. The idea that the poor should be granted an unconditional income sufficient to […]

Apple, Brussels, and Ireland’s Bruised Sovereignty – Project Syndicate op-ed

, 29/09/2016

  ATHENS – Despite their unequivocal Europeanism, the Irish have been serially mistreated by the European Union. When Irish voters rejected the Treaty of Lisbon in 2008, the EU forced them to vote again until they delivered the “right” outcome. A year later, when private Irish banks imploded, threatening their (mainly) German private creditors with […]

Democratising Europe – a transnational project? A debate with openDemocracy

, 13/09/2016

YANIS VAROUFAKIS, ROSEMARY BECHLER, ALEX SAKALIS, and ANTHONY BARNETT 13 September 2016 (Click here for the openDemocracy site) What role does national self-determination and ‘self-government’ play in European and human emancipation today? Yanis Varoufakis replies for DiEM25. Yanis Varoufakis has recently been engaged in debating this key question for our times with the left. (See more.) […]

The Politics of Negative Interest Rates – Project Syndicate op-ed

, 23/08/2016

  ATHENS – Objects of desire come at a cost. Only bad things, like toxic waste, have a negative price, the equivalent of a fee payable to anyone willing to make them disappear. Does this mean that negative interest rates embody a new perspective on money – that it has gone “bad”? [To read on, click […]

Building a Progressive International – op-ed Project Syndicate

, 31/07/2016

ATHENS – Politics in the advanced economies of the West is in the throes of a political shakeup unseen since the 1930s. The Great Deflation now gripping both sides of the Atlantic is reviving political forces that had lain dormant since the end of World War II. Passion is returning to politics, but not in […]

The Right Left for Europe: In response to leftwing Brexiters, Grexiters etc. – Project Syndicate Op-Ed

, 25/06/2016

ATHENS – The United Kingdom’s referendum on whether to leave the European Union created odd bedfellows – and some odder adversaries. As Tory turned mercilessly against Tory, the schism in the Conservative establishment received much attention. But a parallel (thankfully more civilized) split afflicted my side: the left. Having campaigned against “Leave” for several months […]

The ECB’s Illusory Independence – Project Syndicate op-ed

, 06/06/2016

 ATHENS – A commitment to the independence of central banks is a vital part of the creed that “serious” policymakers are expected to uphold (privatization, labor-market “flexibility,” and so on). But what are central banks meant to be independent of? The answer seems obvious: governments. In this sense, the European Central Bank is the quintessentially independent […]

Imagining a New Bretton Woods – Project Syndicate op-ed

, 08/05/2016

The financial meltdown of 2008 prompted calls for a global financial system that curtails trade imbalances, moderates speculative capital flows, and prevents systemic contagion. That, of course, was the goal of the original Bretton Woods system. But such a system today would be both untenable and undesirable. So, what might an alternative look like?

Lies, Damn Lies, and European Growth Statistics

, 15/03/2016

ATHENS – “Greece has at last returned to economic growth.” That was the official European Union storyline at the end of 2014. Alas, Greek voters, unimpressed by this rejoicing, ousted the incumbent government and, in January 2015, voted for a new administration in which I served as finance minister. Last week, similarly celebratory reports emanated […]

Real vs Money Incomes – the one thing we need to understand during deflationary times (with an illustration from Greece and Cyprus)

, 13/03/2016

In inflationary times, real income growth is always good news. However, in deflationary times, real income growth may well reflect a deepening recession (or even a depression). This is important to know lest deepening recession is presented as… economic recovery (as has been the EU’s wont in recent times). How can real income growth reflect […]

Democracy or Bust in Europe -Project Syndicate Op-Ed

, 24/02/2016

BERLIN – “Europe will be democratized or it will disintegrate!” That maxim is more than a catchphrase from the manifesto of the Democracy in Europe Movement – DiEM25, the group I just helped to launch in Berlin. It is a simple, if under-acknowledged fact. Read more at my Project Syndicate page  

How the ‘Troika Effect’ was dubbed the ‘Varoufakis Effect’ – Project Syndicate Op-Ed and beyond

, 28/01/2016

As part of an impressive campaign to discredit the Athens Spring, and those of us who continue to honour and propagate its spirit, a cabal of journalists and ‘analysts’ have joined forces to depict me as the “destroyer of the Greek economy.” The purpose? To demonise the Greek people’s audacity to elect us with a […]

Schäuble’s Gathering Storm – my Project Syndicate op-ed

, 24/10/2015

ATHENS – Europe’s crisis is poised to enter its most dangerous phase. After forcing Greece to accept another “extend-and-pretend” bailout agreement, fresh battle lines are being drawn. And, with the refugee influx exposing the damage caused by divergent economic prospects and sky-high youth unemployment in Europe’s periphery, the ramifications are ominous, as recent statements by […]

Greece without illusions – op-ed in Project Syndicate

, 05/10/2015

ATHENS – “The costliest minor government reshuffle in Greece’s history.” That is at least one way to describe the result of the Greek general election on September 20. Indeed, with few exceptions, the same ministers have returned to the same offices as part of an administration backed by the same odd pair of parties (the […]

Democratizing the Eurozone – a Project-Syndicate op-ed

, 02/09/2015

ATHENS – Like Macbeth, policymakers tend to commit new sins to cover up their old misdemeanors. And political systems prove their worth by how quickly they put an end to their officials’ serial, mutually reinforcing, policy mistakes. Judged by this standard, the eurozone, comprising 19 established democracies, lags behind the largest non-democratic economy in the […]

A New Approach to Eurozone Sovereign Debt – op-ed in Project Syndicate

, 17/08/2015

My latest column for Project Syndicate is now out. Click here for the Project Syndicate page or read on:

In… my defence – by Mohamed El Erian

, 30/07/2015

In Defense of Varoufakis by  MOHAMED A. EL-ERIAN Click here for the Project Syndicate site. Or…

A Speech of Hope for Greece – a Project Syndicate Op-Ed

, 07/06/2015

ATHENS – On September 6, 1946 US Secretary of State James F. Byrnes traveled to Stuttgart to deliver his historic “Speech of Hope.” Byrnes’ address marked America’s post-war change of heart vis-à-vis Germany and gave a fallen nation a chance to imagine recovery, growth, and a return to normalcy. Seven decades later, it is my […]

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