Greece is not the major problem—Europe is

Yanis Varoufakis says about Europe: “A clueless political personnel, in denial of the systemic nature of the crisis, is pursuing policies akin to carpet-bombing the economy of proud European nations in order to save them.” (‘Yanis Varoufakis Sums Up Europe In One Sentence,’ February 6, 2015—zerohedge)

The Greek crisis is very much the work of the so-called ‘free market’ where anything goes. Big banks, led by Goldman Sachs and other vicious speculators pounced on unhappy Greece already in crisis situation due to slack governments, tax evasion and a high level of corruption. The unscrupulous vultures had now secretly stored away booties at the expense of the Greek people.

After all this and five years of austerity suffered by the largely innocent Greek people the EU is now firmly requesting that jobless and hungry Greeks tighten their belts even more. How can you be more jobless than jobless and how can you be hungrier than hungry, unless you are dead. Greece is now a dying nation.

One point is important to mention in the context of the Greek disaster. I doubt if the IMF should even be included any more in this now so popular term ‘Troika.’ Very recently, before and after the July 5 referendum, Christine Lagarde, the managing director of the IMF has been saying more and more openly that Greece must get significant debt relief. What is this—the IMF with a human face? It has actually come to an open war between Lagarde and the German chancellor Angela Merkel, the new iron lady. Welcome to the Thatcher club, dear Angela. It may have taken us a long time to recognize your true colors, but it does seem that here is the new fascist who wants to rule Europe single-handedly.

Lagarde Insists on Greek Debt Easing as Germany Allows Talks (Bloomberg)

There is one voice in this tragedy that is worth listening to at this time, His name is Yanis Varoufakis and he is the former Greek minister of finance for the Syriza government.

Yanis Varoufakis , the brilliant Greek-Australian economist, left his post as visiting professor at the University of Texas in Austin to become the new finance minister of the Syriza government in Greece.

“In November 2010, he and Stuart Holland, a former British Labour Party MP and economics professor at the University of Coimbra (Portugal), published Modest Proposal, a set of economic policies aimed at overcoming the euro crisis

“In 2013, Version 4.0 of A Modest Proposal appeared with the American economist James K. Galbraith as a third co-author.” (Wikipedia)

Varoufakis knows who to blame for the fiasco that made all the hopes collapse that we had tied to the Syriza government. After the sunny Sunday’s Greek referendum on July 5, just hours after the Greek people’s resounding NO victory and their jubilant dancing in the streets, their joy fell apart.

The Troika (the European Commission, the European Central Bank, and the International Monetary Fund) sweated walrus grease from their brows and they ’knew’ immediately (cheered by the German chancellor) that Yanis Varoufakis had to go. He had already gone. He resigned under pressure from his government (pressured by the EU). It was clear then that Tsipras and Syriza had already capitulated. The seemingly so brave and well-intentioned Alexis Tsipras fell apart. Juncker, Merkel and Co. could breathe again. Syriza had been as powerful a threat to Big Business as it has been a source of hope for democracy to the people.

Varoufakis asks us all: Why are the members of Eurogroup (whoever they are . . . Big question.) all saying that no other viable basis exists for a solution to the Greek crisis? Austerity, more austerity is all the EU can come up with. The billions in the past two bailouts went to the lenders, the banks, and the Greek government got a nickel to throw to its hungry people. (The Guardian)

“It did not have to be this way,” says Yanis Varoufakis, “On June 19, I communicated to the German government and to the troika an alternative proposal, as part of a document entitled ‘Ending the Greek Crisis’”[1]

Here is Varoufakis’ own proposal:

Greece’s Proposals to End the Crisis: My intervention at today’s Eurogroup

“”Five months ago, in my very first Eurogroup intervention, I put it to you that the new Greek government faced a dual task:

“We had to earn a precious currency without depleting an important capital good.”

“And I shall wear the creditors’ loathing with pride,” the sharp-tongued Varoufakis wrote, (Ode to a Grecian finance minister as Varoufakis steps down—Marketwatch)

“In a discussion with Nobel laureate Joseph Stiglitz on invitation of U.S. economic think tank ‘Institute for New Economic Thinking,’ Varoufakis stated on 9 April 2015 that “the Greek state does not have the capacity to develop public assets.” Therefore, he announced that his government was “restarting the privatization process.” However, unlike the former governments they would insist on establishing public–private partnerships with the state retaining a minority stake to generate state revenues.” (Wikipedia)

‘Europe,’ the Troika, does not like him. Why? Simple. Because he does not like them. He sees them for what they are—a power-hungry limited group of people who are all set on doing away with any form of sovereignty and independence of European individual nations in order to make the EU a hegemonic bloc alongside the U.S., working with the U.S. and the Corporatocracy and totally disregarding democracy. There are no more sovereign countries in Europe of today. For any form of decision-making, there is only ‘Europe,’ the EU, that is Angela Merkel and Jean-Claude Juncker, the Yes-sayers and the like-minded and power-hungry stooges.

Hear the Troika screaming and the media picking it up and repeating: “Blame the Greeks” (some of them were indeed to blame and slack governments were also guilty)—but above all don’t blame the banks and speculators who were responsible for the shenanigans that took place before 2010. Hide it all under the rug and let’s just go on pretending we believe in what we are screaming so loud—so say the leading members of the EU, with Angela Merkel and Jean-Claude Juncker screaming the loudest.

The Financial Times reports, “Something is rotten with the eurozone’s hideous restrictions on sovereignty.”

The European Commission (the EC, the EU, or call it the Troika if you like) is completely set on removing all sovereign power from the individual European countries. I am not saying that the national governments have clean hands, but at least we voted for them and we have to take part of the blame if there is something rotten in our nation.

We, the real left in France and all over Europe, have known from the beginning that Europe was as undemocratic as the U.S. wanted it to be. It was a U.S. dream to make Europe a united vassal. Their dream came true. With a bang. Only the unelected officers of the European Commission have any say whatsoever. The only elected body in the EU is the Parliament, which has no power at all, a symbolic right to utter a word here and there is all. The Parliament is the carnation in the buttonhole.

Merkel and all the dictator-presidents of the European Commission didn’t think we would ever discover the hidden truth about this Europe of the very very few. Be they Barroso or Juncker, they melt into one as far as taking all power away from the individual countries and from the people.

If by any chance it has still until today eluded you that EU equals fascism, Yanis Varoufakis is here to open your eyes.


[1] “The Greek government proposes to bundle public assets (excluding those pertinent to the country’s security, public amenities, and cultural heritage) into a central holding company to be separated from the government administration and to be managed as a private entity, under the aegis of the Greek Parliament, with the goal of maximizing the value of its underlying assets and creating a homegrown investment stream. The Greek state will be the sole shareholder, but will not guarantee its liabilities or debt.

“The holding company would play an active role readying the assets for sale. It would “issue a fully collateralized bond on the international capital markets” to raise €30-40 billion ($32-43 billion), which, “taking into account the present value of assets,” would “be invested in modernizing and restructuring the assets under its management.”” (Europe’s Vindictive Privatization Plan For Greece)

Siv O’Neall is an Axis of Logic columnist, where this essay first appeared, and is based in France. Her insightful essays are republished and read worldwide. She can be reached at

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