It just keeps on coming…
This EU crisis is an internal conflict within the international Left. Anybody who lived through the Soviet party schisms and purges of the 1930s would recognise the character of this confrontation. It is a war between the doctrinaire, unreconstructed Trots of Syriza and the pragmatic, power-crazed Stalinists of the EU. To Juncker et al. it is hugely frustrating that the crude fundamentalists of the old-style Greek left will not accommodate themselves to the slick, modern, cultural Marxist agenda of Brussels.
There is nothing “modern” or free-market about the EU. It is an old-fashioned cartel whose roots lie in the Confederation of the Rhine and Bonaparte’s Continental System. Like those precedents, it is a political project with dirigiste economic objectives bolted on – most notoriously the unworkable euro currency. It aspired to extinguish national and popular will across Europe and enslave the continent to the delusional aspirations of a selfish and bureaucratic elite. With the complicity of the media, for decades it contrived to brainwash electorates into accepting its mendacious claims. Now, that is all over.
Across Europe, over the past week, there has been a wave of revulsion against the EU, its tyrannical diktats, its contempt for the will of electorates, its economic incompetence and its transparent lies. Suddenly, all the hype, the jargon and the pretence have been stripped away. The evil empire’s lost credibility can never be recovered. We are living in a new climate where any politician who attempts to comply with Brussels will forfeit domestic acceptance. The U-turn by Alexis Tsipras, now attempting to railroad through a democratic parliament a “bailout” package harsher than that rejected by 62 per cent of the Greek electorate just ten days ago has destroyed the last vestige of credibility of the political class.
Telegraph Ambrose Evans-Pritchard:
The EU establishment henceforth faces what it has always feared: a political war on two fronts at once.
It is long been fighting an expanding coaltion of free marketeers, parliamentary “souverainistes”, anti-immigrant populists on the Right.
Its has now lost its remaining emotional hold on the Left after the scorched-earth treatment of Greece over the past five months – culminating in the vindictive decision to impose yet harsher terms on this crushed nation just days after its cri de coeur in a landslide referendum.
Guardian Owen Jones:
Britain’s left is turning against the European Union, and fast.
“Everything good about the EU is in retreat; everything bad is on the rampage,”writes George Monbiot, explaining his about-turn. “All my life I’ve been pro-Europe,” says Caitlin Moran, “but seeing how Germany is treating Greece, I am finding it increasingly distasteful.” Nick Cohen believes the EU is being portrayed “with some truth, as a cruel, fanatical and stupid institution”. “How can the left support what is being done?” asks Suzanne Moore. “The European ‘Union’. Not in my name.” There are senior Labour figures in Westminster and Holyrood privately moving to an “out” position too.
NYTimes (my emphasis):
The I.M.F. memo amounts to an admission that the eurozone cannot work in its current form. It lays out three options for achieving Greek debt sustainability, all of which are tantamount to a fiscal union, an arrangement through which wealthier countries would make payments to support the Greek economy. Not coincidentally, this is the solution many economists have been telling European officials is the only way to save the euro — and which northern European countries have been resisting because it is so costly.
Verhofstadt is talking about a new treaty and the need for economic governance of the eurozone. And that’s on its way now, as opinion firms up in support of the EU, with 68 percent in this survey broadly in favour of UK membership – far more than would vote for any particular political party.
Focusing on the Greek issue, it is very easy for Eurosceptics to reinforce their own confirmation bias and tell themselves that the EU is on its last legs. But they are talking to themselves. In institutional terms, the EU has probably never been stronger and more confident, while there is little support for Greece in the rest of Europe.
ZeroHedge: Schauble speaking in 2011:
Schauble: “We decided to arrive at a political union via an economic and currency union. We had the hope – and we still have it today – that the Euro will gradually bring about political union. But we’re not there yet, and that’s one of the reasons why the markets are distrustful.
Welt am Sontag: “So will the markets now force us into a political union?”
Schauble: “Most member states are not yet fully prepared to accept the necessary constraints on national sovereignty. But trust me the problem can be solved.”
Perhaps they’re going to use this crisis to to push through fiscal union, suppressing all national sovereignty Greek-style in the process?