Home | About | Donate

'Only Ray of Hope in This Bleak Setting': As Greek Right Regains Power, Applause as Varoufakis-Led MeRA25 Wins First-Ever Seats in Parliament

Originally published at http://www.commondreams.org/news/2019/07/08/only-ray-hope-bleak-setting-greek-right-regains-power-applause-varoufakis-led-mera25

I wish Yanis luck, but this insistence that the EU superstate can be reformed more easily than a single nation state will be his political undoing. It’s also why so many people keep bouncing from left to right and back again trying desperately to find someone who will both combat austerity and restore national sovereignty and popular control to nations. As long as the European left insists that cosmopolitanism can be made to work for a continental population subject to financier rule, it’s unlikely the “left” will offer anything sufficiently attractive to seriously challenge neoliberalism in Europe.

Anyone wanting an EU in a “progressive” image is going to have to start the project over.

4 Likes

Varoufakis’ writings have greatly elevated my understanding of how geopolitical economics really work. He gets into not only the negotiations at the highest levels, the European Central Bank, the International Monetary Fund, the Greek and German governments, etc., but also the effects that decisions have throughout the spectrum of citizens. He explains the debt-trapping mechanisms that continue to impede the sovereignty of nations. Furthermore, his heart and his mind are in the right place. Had Tsipras taken Varoufakis’ counsel to heart and avoided the additional debt that TPTB were cramming down Greece’s throat, I believe that Greece would be in a better place now–still behind the eight ball, but a smaller eight ball at that. My heart goes out to rank and file Greeks who will now be squeezed ever more as the conservatives extract their kilos of flesh while simultaneously setting up Greece for their next debt-expanding trap.

4 Likes

Yes, but the Greeks still elected a majority conservative parliament and a wacko right wing prime minister.
It’s the 1930’s again, where the hateful fascists run the world.

1 Like

Neo-feudalism, like the old feudalism, is not recognized in its activities and premises as a ‘system’ while they are underway. Hindsight, in its celebrated visionary numerics of 20/20 (date a ‘coincidence’ ) gathers the fragments scattered by the divide and conquer splitting machines.
The language of ego, constantly being ghosted into motion, is the sole reason for the existence of marketing and advertising now called mass media. Sell your soul, for what you do not need, then buy what is marketed to numb you to the pain and squander your brain.

For example - take a needle full of MSNBC (or any of its alpha kin) every day for a year while seeking the antidote of documentation and alternative framing and baselines into consideration. Then try to tell me they are not assiduously asserting that you MUST exist only as captive in THEIR ‘parallel universe’. The sense of something being in motion deflates like a balloon fully opened at the blow spout end. The trick is to prevent damage to the balloon fastly farting its random tour through the air before falling back to solid ground.

Feudal wiki

1 Like

You hit on the key point. The reason neoliberal globalism is so effective and dangerous is because it operates as a mob-like oligarchy that controls the whole system from within (via banks and corporations) while it destroys all other forms of popular representation which are inherently local and diffuse. (The invisible hand comes to mind.) The only way to change this is to have a broad international awakening capable of empowering local governance that is also politically engaged systematically. This is the only possible way that the necessary changes can be made to deal with global warming and all of the other global (but locally manifest) problems. It’s a daunting task but the only way to make a real change.

1 Like

Always an uphill fight, the “people” against a reactionary government. We only have to look here in the US as how hard it is.

3 Likes

You’re wrong in this sense; there are MORE right wing govts today than there were in the 20’s & 30’s. Then, in Europe, there was Germany, Spain and Italy in the Fascist camp. There were a lot of right leaning and monarch type govts then, but not that many outright Fascist ones. After the war that changed dramatically as many former colonies gained independence and formed democratic govts. It has mainly been in the last 20 yrs that has been changing. For an excellent example look at Israel. You can argue how they gained “independence”, but when Israel was formed it was basically a Socialist state. Now look at them.

1 Like

This latest swing to the right is dispiriting, no doubt about that.

We are offered socialism as a panacea - Hmm?

It is worth noting that Varoufakis is a strongman - are not all leaders?

People are scared and hurting. It seems that austerity, so prevalent amongst the electorate, resonates in politics - common sense, in other words, in defiance of Keynes and elaborate theories by beancounters.

But I think there is a deeper reason.

People are impressed most by a sense of fair play - and by leaders with courage and integrity.

Since these are scarce as hen’s teeth worldwide just now, people just vote for what they think will provide jobs.

Mistakenly - in my opinion - but then that is par for the course, isn’t it?

Kennedy was elected, but by the slimmest of margins, all the while running against a thug.

No - climate change and a near death experience may be the only way out of this mess.

The interest rates are a bad joke - the very opposite of capitalism and liberal democracy.

I think people are terribly confused - why wouldn’t they be?

But in a sense the election of Trump speaks volumes - saying we will destroy this system, whatever this system pretends it is - because all are liars and frauds.

The formation of the superstate was done at the request of the Corporations. They insisted that free access of their Capital to all markets was the only way to remain “Competitive” with multinationals from other nation states. In surrendering to this pressure Countries surrendered their economic sovereignity to the same and all Countries Governments focus shifted to “what is good for the Corporation”.

Socialism should be about power from the bottom up. It should not be concentrating all of that power in the hands of the few sitting in some far off city. The concentration of power in such a manner inevitably leads to authoritariamism and in Greece this was manifested when the ECB dictated that the Greeks cut Social spending programs , privatize Government owned assets , and use the added revenues to pay off Bankers. The corruption that occurs here also occurs inside of workers unions where the rank and file union members voice becomes secondary and tertiary to what the Union leaders deem important.

In an economic system where the means of production has been surrendered to a small handful of investors , those investors inevitably use the threat of “lost jobs” to get whatever it is they wish. The investor class cares only about one thing and that their rate of return. Everything else can be sacrificed if it means more return on their investment.

A union of peoples can be formed all working towards the greater common good but NAFTA and the EU are not models of that. The formation of such a union should exclude Corporations completely from the decision making process. Corporations are not people. In a Democracy , a Corporation or a Bank should change its structure so as to work in the peoples best interests. In an Oligarchy those same Corprations and Banks dictate how Governments should work in their best interests.

4 Likes

Clutching at straws

“… one “silver lining” was the strong performance…” of MeRa

MeRa 25 at 3.44 percent (nine seats).

So shall the article consider it to be also the dark clouds of Greek Solution looming, a right-wing anti-migrant party, at 3.7 percent (10 seats)

Just to demonstrate the Elitism that goes on in the governing body of the European Union , 3 of the most powerful offices in that establishment were recently appointed.

Ursula Gertrud von der Leyen. European Commission President. . She from a wealthy family of “Professional Politicians” groomed to power by her Father who was a high ranking member in the EU commission as well. Of American/German descent her family related to some of the most powerful and wealthiest families in Europe.

Charles Michel Appointed President of the EU (Not elected) Comes from as powerful family in Belgium. He was EX Belgium Prime Minister and the son of another high ranking Belgian Politican. Again groomed to power , their family very powerful inside of Belgium.

Christine Legarde Appointed head of the European Central Bank. Past head of the IMF and a great friend of Bankers everywhere and long an advocate of gutting Social Program spending in EU countries in order to balance budgets. During the Greek crisis she suggested the Greek people had lived high on the hog of Social spending and it was now payback time as austerity forced on that Government. She also suggested King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia was a great protector of women’s rights.

Three of the most powerful offices in the EU all appointed by insiders and all to wealthy individuals with connections to some of the richest families in Europe and people really expect them to be concerned about the plight of the working class? This is the same sort of magical thinking that has workers in the USA , barely able to keep their heads above water , thinking Donald Trump on their side.

1 Like

terrific post.

Still peddling absolutist fantasies from your sanctimonious ivory tower, I see. My, you’ve really got in for us Europeans and our EU now, I must have touched a nerve! And I’ll have to tell you how you should organise things in Canada one day.

And you scurried off again, never answering my last points, as usual.

My advice to you would be until you can come with an answer to the questions I posed to you ages ago that you evaded in your usual slippery manner, namely:

  1. as postulated above to your boyfriend, tell me where in the world there is more social democracy and progressive left wing values balanced with personal freedoms than in the EU and EEA?

  2. tell me why it is that if the EU is such a bastion of neo-liberalism, free market capitalism and corporatism as you surmise, are all those opposed to it and in favour of brexit in the UK (and EU deconstruction in other places) stalwart supporters of neo-liberalism, free market capitalism and corporatism, not to mention often downright fascism, like Nigel Farage, Boris Johnson, Priti Patel, Dominic Raab, Aaron Banks, austerity architext Ian Duncan Smith, etc etc, as well as peple from that sphere of idealism in the USA, including Trump and Steve Bannon?

Until you can come up with answer to them, which won’t because you can’t, then kindly put a sock in it as every sour little dig you post to try and disparage the wonderful EU just makes you look like someone unable to admit he is wrong in the face of my arguments and therefore a bit of prize wazzock. It doesn’t flatter you any.

Incidentally, news today is that demagogic Thatcherite promoter of corporations Jeremy Corbyn has announced Labour will fully back a second EU referendum in which the Labour Party will campaign for remaining in the EU. Though I guess he, and all the Labour Party, trade unions, members, also poor deluded Yanis etc, needs to speak to you and the Drone first to get a proper education about the matter. Here, for your perusal, is an extract from Jeremy’s letter:

*"Dear member, *

I am proud to lead the Labour Party – the greatest political party and social movement in this country.

*We all recognise that the issue of Brexit has been divisive in our communities and sometimes in our party too. *

*As democrats, Labour accepted the result of the 2016 referendum. In our 2017 manifesto, Labour also committed to oppose a No Deal Brexit and the Tories’ Brexit plans – which threatened jobs, living standards, and the open multicultural society that we as internationalists value so much. *

I want to pay tribute to Keir Starmer and the shadow Brexit team for holding the Government to account during this process. That helped secure a meaningful vote on their deal – which we then defeated three times – including inflicting the largest ever defeat on any Government. And following their refusal to publish their legal advice, this Government became the first to be held in contempt of Parliament.

Now both Tory leadership candidates are threatening a No Deal Brexit – or at best a race to the bottom and a sweetheart deal with Donald Trump: that runs down industry, opens up our NHS and other public services to yet more privatisation, and shreds environmental protections, rights at work and consumer standards. I have spent the past few weeks consulting with the shadow cabinet, MPs, affiliated unions and the NEC. I have also had feedback from members via the National Policy Forum consultation on Brexit. Whoever becomes the new Prime Minister should have the confidence to put their deal, or No Deal, back to the people in a public vote. In those circumstances, I want to make it clear that Labour would campaign for Remain"

Get writing to him suspira, he obviously knows not of what he speaks, unlike you and your pet drone buddy.

Yet still Yanis is pro-EU, so I guess he’s just not as educated, clued up about the EU or sufficiently of the Left, as are you. Maybe you could give him lessons.

So tell me where on the entire globe this bastion of anti-neoliberalism exists that we should all look to as an example of the way to go in overcoming it, and where in the world there is more progressive ‘social democracy’ than in the EU? I’d really like to know. Although I’m guessing you don’t have an answer and will ignore such difficult questions as you’ve done in the past. I mean, it seems from these boards at least and listening to America’s rather mild version of the sort of Leftist you can just about tolerate, Bernie Sanders, that there’s so much of it here in the lovely EU you could only ever dream of and that EU or EEA countries, Denmark springs to mind, are often used as examples of how a progressive leftist USA could be!

Well, enjoy your lack of free health care, enjoy your lack of free university education, enjoy your lack of environmental protections, enjoy your lack of 5 weeks paid holiday a year, your lack of year long maternity/paternity leave, enjoy lack of financial transaction tax, etc, etc, etc and keep slagging off that bastion of evil neo-liberal corruption the EU.

Yet just remember, things happen incrementally, rarely in one go so if you keep throwing away sixpences in the hope of finding a pound, you’re gonna be sat around a long time getting increasingly sour.

And unless you can tell me where, other than some tiny country like New Zealand, there is equal or more freedom balanced with social democractic protection against rampant capitalism than in the EU, don’t bother to reply.

You two should get married.

Found your pink crayons again? You that person claiming to be a Socialist who voted for Tony Blair? So Tony Blair was running the greatest Political party in the UK ? He belongs in the slammer like the war criminal he is.

All I need to know.

As to answering your points you do not make any. You just repeat what your Politicians say. I can listen to those Politicians and recognize it as BS. You have been whining about my posts since I pointed out the legacy of Racism in the British Empire . Seek help.

Why talk about your BS!

The maternity leave you speak of, that “free education” and the like does not happen because of the EU. It has nothing to do with the EU as it implemented at the level of each individual Country.

The Maternity leave benefits in the UK are about the worst in the EU. Its poverty rate is one of the highest and the UK does not have “free education”. The UK has some of the highest post secondary education costs in the world.

oh look, the adorable megaphone of the ruling class emits a dust cloud. don’t you have a peasant to beat up or something?

I didn’t vote for Tony Blair, I voted for the Green Party. I only became a Labour member a few years back so I could vote for Corbyn as leader during the Blairite coup. Though I regret it now! So you’re wrong about that as well as virtually everything else you write.

Yeh, I agree with you. But what on earth has that got to do with anything? Try and stay focused, will you.

Sure, I made lots of points, most of which you ignore, but the two I specifically wanted you to answer since way back that always evade are, once again:

  1. as postulated above to your boyfriend, tell me where in the world there is more social democracy and progressive left wing values balanced with personal freedoms than in the EU and EEA?

  2. tell me why it is that if the EU is such a bastion of neo-liberalism, free market capitalism and corporatism as you surmise, are all those opposed to it and in favour of brexit in the UK (and EU deconstruction in other places) stalwart supporters of neo-liberalism, free market capitalism and corporatism, not to mention often downright fascism, like Nigel Farage, Boris Johnson, Priti Patel, Dominic Raab, Aaron Banks, austerity architext Ian Duncan Smith, etc etc, as well as peple from that sphere of idealism in the USA, including Trump and Steve Bannon?

Instead of answering, you evade, scurry off, throw in straw men, hurl abuse, or try and change the subject, and all because they pin you down and expose the paradoxical flaw in all your silly comments and arguments about Brexit and the EU and then force you to face the fact that you are simply wrong. Yet your pompous ego is too fragile to handle that, even to point of self denial where you’re suddenly claiming I haven’t actually made any points! Have you ever been wrong about anything in your entire life? I’m guessing, in your mind, the answer is no. Such weakness of character.

So, what things do I repeat that ‘my’ (whatever that means?) politicians say? Apart from quoting you that nice speech from Nicola Sturgeon, because it was rather pretty and shows that there are quite a lot of people within and enthusiastic about the EU, politicians included, who believe in it as a peace project and always have been since its formation. Although not in your absolutist mind set that reflects a kind of mental deformity. Everyone here is a rampant warmongering corparatist. All or nothing! I think you’re the one who needs to seek help.

I don’t have any problem accepting a legacy of racism in the British Empire, so you’re wrong about that one too, my main point was the staggering hypocrisy of YOU who is a living embodiment of that empire in the form of being an actual colonist, one of the most guilty, living on stolen land, progeny of genocidal ancestors, having the utter lack of self awareness and the breathtaking arrrogance to think yourself exempt from those criticisms and instead seemingly try and distance yourself from those crimes of your forebears, and yourself, by blaming Britons generally and by implication on those living here today whose ancestors like mine, didn’t go colonise other countries and kill the natives for their land as yours did. So, yeh, there is a legacy of racism in the British Empire, yet you’re the living embodiment of it and are more culpable of it than any Brit sharing this island with me. Got it now, or are you still a righteous innocent?