Will Syriza take power in Greece?

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Mr. Magoo

Former Swedish PM Carl Bildt tweeted:

Quote:
Syriza in Greece has won the election by promising that taxpayers in other Euro counties will pay even more to them. Rather daring.

He was centre-right, not centre-left, but still, he's got a bit of a point.

josh

Mr. Magoo wrote:

Former Swedish PM Carl Bildt tweeted:

Quote:
Syriza in Greece has won the election by promising that taxpayers in other Euro counties will pay even more to them. Rather daring.

He was centre-right, not centre-left, but still, he's got a bit of a point.

They don't want other EU countries to pay them more. They want to pay their creditors less.

Mr. Magoo

What's the real difference?

If I have a $1000 loan from the bank, and I tell them I'd like to only repay $500 of it, haven't I just asked them for $500??

josh

Because "taxpayers" are not involved.

Mr. Magoo

They aren't?  Isn't the Eurozone -- which is to say, taxpayers in other Eurozone countries -- Greece's largest creditor?

josh

It owes money to banks and other financial institutions.

iyraste1313

Don't Let the Ridiculous Smears Fool You: Syriza Is No Party of the Radical 'Far Left'

 

Whatever the labels, Syriza is prepared to collapse its own banking system, with snowballing effects throughout Europe´s financial institutions.

It sees the high levels of debt due to the banking crisis of 2007/8, illegitimate debt. let the banks pay for their ponzi schemes!

Syriza neither buys into the bs about Russia takeover of Ukraine´s territories, nor supports the sanctions v. Russia

They are challenging the key institutions of power of the global corporate capitalist system......

They also are forging a European Alliance, putting each Nations people first, whatever the consequences to the banks and NATO, including Hungary, Serbia, Slovakia(?), at least one of the baltic countries, with most of the rest of Europe looking on with growing sympathy...whether they are a radical left or whatever, they are a serious threat to the system and will have to be crushed!

Mr. Magoo

I see.  So Angela Merkel is only talking about this on behalf of banks.  No actual countries are directly involved, nor lending any money from their own reserves.

 

josh

Less than 20% is owed to governments and the EU.

http://demonocracy.info/infographics/eu/debt_greek/debt_greek.html

Mr. Magoo

The link in post 99, to Britain's public broadcaster, suggests 60% to the Eurozone.  Given that they had a category for foreign banks (e.g. a German bank) that weighed in at 1% I would have assumed that meant that "the Eurozone" referred to other countries in the Eurozone.

Anyway, at the risk of taking a red pen to the former PM of Sweden, would you see this any differently if he'd said:

Quote:
Syriza in Greece has won the election by promising that taxpayers and others in other Euro counties will pay even more to them. Rather daring.

I think his point was "and what if flipping the bird and saying 'later, haters' doesn't work?"

Bacchus

But that would mean they want to cut that 20% to 10% which would cost taxpayers in other countries? Or are they saying they will pay that 20% fully just not the other ones?  And if those banks in other countries ffail because of these massive losses, wont the gov't's bail them out (with those taxpayer monies) or let them fail (losing the taxpayers the monies they hadnt paid to the govt)?

NDPP

Greece Offers Europe a Chance - RT Interview  (and vid)

http://yanisvaroufakis.eu/2015/01/13/long-interview-on-rt-americas-boom-...

yv starts at 4 minutes

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

thread drift...

with video.

Spain rally: Podemos holds Madrid mass 'March for Change'

The "March for Change" is one of the party's first outdoor mass rallies, as it looks to build on the recent victory of its close allies Syriza in Greece.

Podemos leader Pablo Iglesias told the crowd a "wind of change" was starting to blow through Europe.

Podemos has surged ahead in opinion polls, and has vowed to write off part of Spain's debt if it comes to power.

The BBC's Tom Burridge in Madrid says that there has been an impressive turnout and a carnival atmosphere at the rally.

Several of Madrid's main avenues became a sea of people and purple, the party's colour, he says, after its supporters travelled from all over Spain.

'We dream'

Marching from Madrid city hall to the central Puerta del Sol square, protesters shouted "Si, Podemos!", meaning "Yes, we can".

Broadcaster TVE reported that hundreds of thousands were at the demonstration, but there was no official tally.

"The wind of change is starting to blow in Europe," Mr Iglesias said, addressing supporters in Greek and Spanish at the start of the rally....

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-31072139

...end thread drift

josh

Mr. Magoo wrote:

The link in post 99, to Britain's public broadcaster, suggests 60% to the Eurozone.  Given that they had a category for foreign banks (e.g. a German bank) that weighed in at 1% I would have assumed that meant that "the Eurozone" referred to other countries in the Eurozone.

Anyway, at the risk of taking a red pen to the former PM of Sweden, would you see this any differently if he'd said:

Quote:
Syriza in Greece has won the election by promising that taxpayers and others in other Euro counties will pay even more to them. Rather daring.

I think his point was "and what if flipping the bird and saying 'later, haters' doesn't work?"

If that means taxpayers in other countries may have to pay more to bail out banks and other non-Greek financial institutions, then I could agree with that.

NDPP

Europe Slouches Towards Anxiety and War  -  by Pepe Escobar

http://rt.com/op-edge/228263-europe-anxiety-war/

"The tantalizingly tense face-off between Eurogroup head Jeroen Dijsselbloem and new Green Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis has set up the battlefield; the EU won't accept a 'unilateral' Greece, and Greece won't accept a bailout extension or the diktats of the troika (EU, ECB, IMF)..."

Robo

The Globe and Mail, that widely recognised voice of Marxist-Leninst economics, wrote what I thought was an amazing editorial in its January 31/15 edition, titled: [url=http://www.theglobeandmail.com/globe-debate/editorials/europes-greek-les..."Greek lesson: Austerity has failed"[/url].  Without using the word Keynesian once, the editorial points out that, while Canada and the USA had a recession in recent years, the size of their economies has now grown past their pre-recession levels.  As the editorial notes, since the degree of severe austerity measures was imposed on Greece, "GDP was contracted 25 percent since 2007.  One quarter of the Greek economy has ceased to exist, and all of the jobs and paycheques along with it."  More astonishing is the final paragraph of the editorial: "Europe's choice is stark: if it doesn't unwind austerity, the whole European project is going to collapse.  The continent is stuck and needs economic simulus: ..." 

Apparently, the revolution has come, if this is what the Mop and Pail writes on its editorial page...

montrealer58 montrealer58's picture

One depressing thing about the article is that it makes Harper look better than Merkel. Germany doesn't have to borrow so much because they are able to collect taxes from people who are wealthy. In Southern Europe, the wealthy avoid taxes which takes money out of circulation. This has a severe deflationary effect. In the old days they would just inflate currency and then revalue it. Under the Euro they can't.

We shall see how long it will take these shockwaves to reach us.

Mr. Magoo

Quote:
Germany doesn't have to borrow so much because they are able to collect taxes from people who are wealthy. In Southern Europe, the wealthy avoid taxes which takes money out of circulation.

What's Germany's magic trick for this?

KenS

There is no magic. and I think the point is generally overstated, at the least.

Germany has a stonger economy. Its tax collection is comparable to other northern European economies, including France.

Merkel just has an obsession against debt, which so far she has managed to keep broad support on that.

iyraste1313

.....the economy is stuck and needs economic stimulus......!

the problem of course is that the macro financial methods used by the governments through their capitalist central banks have only been pushing paper around, not stimulating the real world of economy as everyone continues deeper and deeper into debt, governments, corporations and consumers..which have caused  innumerable asset bubbles, which are now bursting, one by one....

so the only solutions are for governments to begin taking control over their own economies, building self reliance, from the bottom up...which means in fact we are entering the collapse of the system of corporate globalization...

too bad Canada will be the last to realize this new reality

NDPP

We may realize it a bit sooner if/when it all comes crashing down upon our heads, perhaps rather sooner than later..

Mr. Magoo

Quote:
Its tax collection is comparable to other northern European economies, including France.

What about southern European economies?  Why a north/south distinction?  *Is* there a difference?

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Syriza Official Vows to Kill EU-US Trade Deal as 'Gift to All European People'

An official with Greece's newly elected Syriza party may have sounded the death knell for a proposed EU-U.S. trade deal that has faced a mountain of opposition from civil society.

The deal is the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), now facing its eighth round of talks between negotiators this week in Brussels.

The TTIP, which would be the biggest trade deal ever, has been criticized as a corporate-friendly deal that threatens food and environmental safety under the guise of "harmonization" of regulations.

Georgios Katrougkalos, now deputy minister for administrative reform, confirmed what he had told EurActiv Greece ahead of his Syriza party's victory last week: that his parliament would not ratify the trade deal.

"I can ensure you that a Parliament where Syriza holds the majority will never ratify the deal. And this will be a big gift not only to the Greek people but to all the European people," EurActiv reported Monday....

http://www.commondreams.org/news/2015/02/02/syriza-official-vows-kill-eu...

josh

That would be the greatest gift they could give the world.

montrealer58 montrealer58's picture

Gotta love democracy.

NDPP

Europe's Turn Back to the Left: Today Greece, Tomorrow Spain

http://rt.com/op-edge/228655-greece-spain-left-economy/

"Far from 'radical', it's perfectly sound policy in a world where one percent of the population will soon control over half of global wealth."

 

The Spartan Resurrection in Greece 

http://www.counterpunch.org/2015/02/02/the-spartan-resurrection-in-greece/

"Having just written that Greece needs Spartans in order to prevail over its creditors and the EU, the new Greek government is showing signs of being Spartans. Listen to these words from Greece's new Prime Minister, Alexis Tsipras: 'We should not accept or recognize the government of neo-Nazis in Ukraine.' 'The EU lacks democracy and citizens do not believe that their vote can change policy.'

If the new Greek government adheres to its Red Cloaks and the EU looters do not bend, Greece can turn to the new BRICS bank for its financing , and turn its back to the EU. The other southern European countries that are set up for looting could follow.

Intransigence on the part of the EU and Greece's creditors could unleash a Black Swan that could unwind the EU and consequently NATO. Peace would descend upon the plundered and war-torn earth..."

Aristotleded24

Mr. Magoo wrote:

Former Swedish PM Carl Bildt tweeted:

Quote:
Syriza in Greece has won the election by promising that taxpayers in other Euro counties will pay even more to them. Rather daring.

He was centre-right, not centre-left, but still, he's got a bit of a point.

[url=http://commondreams.org/views/2015/02/03/europes-sake-greece-needs-new-d... are historical precedents, both good and bad:[/url]

Quote:
One wonders if the Germans have learned anything from their own history. After World War I, they were forced to pay unaffordable reparations. The result was hyperinflation followed by deep depression and the rise of Adolf Hitler. After World War II, the allies had enough good sense to forgive German debt — racked up by the most heinous of all governments — and put the country on the road to growth. Greece, of course, has neither the weight nor the threat posed by Germany. But the threat to Europe extends across the frayed community.

And what of the debt?

Quote:
The Greek debt cannot be repaid. When the bottom dropped out of the global economy, Greece, plagued by a corrupt and indebted government, was the most vulnerable of the European Union nations. The so-called “troika” — the EU, the European Central Bank and the IMF — stepped in to bail out reckless banks, assume most of the debt, and inflict harsh terms on the Greeks to repay it. The Greeks have sold off their assets, crushed workers, trampled labor laws and slashed vital public services to ensure that the private bankers be paid.

...

But debt that cannot be repaid will not be repaid. So Syriza calls for writing off half of the debt (almost all of it now owed to governments and the “troika”) and restructuring the rest so that it is repaid as Greek grows, not as it sinks. It will rebuild public services, raise the minimum wage, and put people to work. It seeks a European-wide reconstruction program to get Europe going. It is far more committed to reform than the previous parties that negotiated with the “troika.” It offers the best hope of cracking down on the oligarchs who have corrupted Greek politics, and looted the public till while evading taxes.

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Germany Digs in Heels on Austerity as Greece Demands End to 'Business As Usual'

As a leaked document on Wednesday suggested the German government is determined to take a hard stance against the new Syriza government, Greece's newly appointed financial minister Yanis Varoufakis declared "business as usual" is no longer an option when it comes to his nation's relationship with European creditors.

Representing the new anti-austerity Syriza government, Varoufakis said he is optimistic that ongoing talks with foreign ministers and Troika representatives—which includes the IMF, the European Central Bank (ECB), and European Commission—will allow Greece to strike a deal after a series of high-level meetings this week.

On Wednesday, Varoufakis met with the head of the European Commission, Jean-Claude Juncker, and Mario Draghi, head of the ECB , as well as his German counterpart Wolfgang Schaueble, to discuss a proposal to link Greece's debt repayments with the country's economic growth....

http://www.commondreams.org/news/2015/02/04/germany-digs-heels-austerity...

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

..very interesting

Syriza Needs Alliance Against German "Beggar Thy Neighbor" Policies

video

Economist Heiner Flassbeck tells Paul Jay that Germany has violated EU agreements and Syriza should focus on creating an alliance with Italy, Spain and France to oppose policies that are driving Europe into a deeper recession

http://therealnews.com/t2/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=31&I...

josh

Half of Germany's debt was canceled in 1953.

http://cadtm.org/Greece-Germany-who-owes-who-1

Apparently what's good for the goose isn't good for the gander.

iyraste1313

ECB Pulls The Trigger: Blocks Funding To Greece Via Debt Collateral - Full StatementSubmitted by Tyler Durden on 02/04/2015 - 16:25 

Just what the market had hoped would not happen...

*ECB SAYS IT LIFTS WAIVER ON GREEK GOVERNMENT DEBT AS COLLATERAL
*ECB SAYS IT CAN'T ASSUME SUCCESSFUL CONCLUSION OF GREECE REVIEW

What this means simply is that since Greek banks are now unable to pledge Greek bonds as collateral and fund themselves, and liquidity is about to evaporate, the ECB has effectively just given a green light for Greek bank runs, as suddenly it has removed, both mathematically but worse politically, a key support pillar from underneath the already bailed out Greek banking system, (or merely a negotiating move to let Greece see just what kind of chaos this will create ahead of the big D-Day on Feb 25th when ELA could be withdrawn).

NDPP

Someone suggested the brilliant solution of Russian loans .This would consist of Russia transferring to Greece its outstanding Ukrainian IOUs which Greece could then 'pay' to the ECB. And they could then try and collect from Petro P et al in Kiev. Nifty eh?

Mr. Magoo

Is that really how it works, internationally?

Because if my sketchy friend Bob owes me a thousand dollars, I can't just pay my mortgage by giving my bank his sketchy IOU, written on a Pizza Pizza napkin, and say "here, you go collect".  As I understand it, you can sell a debt to a willing buyer, but you can't just pretend a debt is some kind of currency.

montrealer58 montrealer58's picture

If you owe me $1,000, that liability of yours is an accounts receivable of mine. Under GAAP, I can claim that as an asset.

Mr. Magoo

But can you pay your own debt with that, like you were paying with $1000 in cash?  If so then your choice to take me on as a debtor just gets passed to someone else who may not have chosen to, yes?

KenS

montrealer58 wrote:

If you owe me $1,000, that liability of yours is an accounts receivable of mine. Under GAAP, I can claim that as an asset.

Not only as Magoo said can you not pay your own debt with an account receivable, under GAAP you cannot count a doubtful AR as an asset.

And there is a legal burden on the holder of ARs to look for and bring to light doubtful ones, and to write down the asset as a bad debt.

josh

There is no guarantee that Greece will be as successful with a return to the drachma, but there are reasons for optimism. First and foremost, the country now has both a primary budget surplus and a trade surplus. The primary budget refers to the national budget without counting interest payments. Greece is now running a primary budget surplus of more than 3 percent of GDP (the equivalent of $500 billion a year in U.S. GDP). This means that if it didn’t have to pay interest on its debt, it would not need to borrow to make ends meet.

Since Greece has a trade surplus, it already doesn’t need to borrow to finance essential imports. (The recent plunge in oil prices could save Greece $9 billion a year, or close to 4 percent of GDP.) The drop in the drachma relative to the euro will further improve its trade position, leading to a boost in net exports and a sharp upturn in employment. It is certainly plausible that Greece’s economy will in very short order make up the ground lost to an initial period of instability and then continue on a path of robust growth.

This is where the EU has inadvertently done Greece a favor. It has damaged Greece’s economy and society so severely that the disruptions caused by leaving the euro are likely to seem minor by comparison.

https://rwer.wordpress.com/2015/02/05/greece-needs-an-exit-option/

NDPP

ECB To Greece: Drop Dead

http://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2015/02/ecb-greece-drop-dead.html

"Even by the standards of bank thuggishness, the move by the ECB last night was a stunner. Americans have become used to banks taking houses under dubious pretexts when both the investors and borrowers would do better with a writedown. But to see the ECB try to take a country is another matter entirely.

As one seasoned pro said, 'if someone had tried something like this against a country with a decent sized military, the tanks would be rolling.' But the message from the enforcers at the ECB was unambiguous: Greece has no rights, and needs to accept its debtcropper status.

The ECB has thus effectively said that it would rather have fascsts like Golden Dawn running Greece, which is what will eventually occur if it succeeds in breaking Syriza..."

Having installed one in Ukraine, perhaps the PTB plan to try again in Greece.

Geoff

We know austerity policies are designed to transfer wealth to the rich from everyone else.  It is a "radical" solution to benefit the so-called 1%, whatever small percentage it actually is.

Greece has every right to reject a path that will leave many Greeks jobless and poor for decades.  If Europe and the west won't agree to re-negotiate, then why not approach the BRICS countries for a better deal?

Russia, for example, would likely be happy to help Greece poke a hole in the EU, despite its own economic troubles.  The world is order in need of a "re-balance", and if Greece can assist in that re-balance, good for Greece and tough luck for the "austerity pornographers".

NDPP

PM Tsipras Reveals Govt Policy Progress - LIVE BLOG from Athens

http://www.keeptalkinggreece.com/2015/02/08/pm-tsipras-reveals-govt-poli...

"Greek media hs been reporting earlier Sunday that the Greek coalition does not intend to bow to Eurozone pressure to stick to strict austerity and the commitments signed by the previous government. On the contrary, Tsipras is expected to reveal a government program of less austerity and measures to benefit the vulnerable and impoverished groups of Greek society suffering from the strict austerity.

Tsipras first major speech in the Greek Parliament is scheduled to start at 7PM Sunday. A debate will follow Monday. The vote of confidence Tuesday..."

 

Wall Street and the Crisis in Greece

http://www.counterpunch.org/2015/02/06/wall-street-and-the-crisis-in-gre...

"The dominant storyline of the German/ECB view towards Greece is of obstinacy - Greece is in an ongoing economic Depression and its capacity to repay debt is declining. Under no configuration of circumstance can Greece repay debt in the amount owed. So what do the Germans, the IMF and the ECB really want from Greece?

A rough analogy can be found in IMF loans to Ukraine in the midst of a coup engineered by the Obama administration. The coup in Ukraine is about energy and geopolitics - from whom and by what route will oil and gas be supplied to Europe and in what form will the US renew its Cold War against Russia.

With the loan the IMF, aka American and European banking interests, now own Ukraine. And in addition to 'gifting' Ukraine with war, the IMF is implementing austerity policies along the lines of the Greek model..."

Aristotleded24

[url=http://www.cbc.ca/news/business/joe-oliver-urges-eu-to-compromise-on-gre... help me, I (sort of) agree with Joe Oliver:[/url]

Quote:
"What we have to do is to arrive at a solution which will require a compromise. Greece is in financial difficulty,” said Oliver in an interview with CBC at the G20 meeting of finance ministers and central bankers in Istanbul.

Oliver reproached Greece for decades of mismanagement, which has led to a heavy debt burden, equivalent to 175 per cent of the country’s GDP.

"There are some countries that have engrained in them policies that are dysfunctional for growth. And we see in Greece what happens when a country over a period of time  spends more than it earns. One can't sustain that. An individual family can't sustain it. A nation can't sustain it," he said.

...

“It has made some assertions but they're going to have to live with the fiscal reality they're in. On the other hand, I think Europe and other countries have to take into account the difficulties and be a bit accommodating," Oliver said.

NDPP

Outlook Darkens for Syriza and Greece

http://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2015/02/outlook-darkens-for-syriza-and-gr...

"Syriza finds its options narrowing dramaticaly and a Grexit is not something the government wants or is seeking, for obvious reasons..."

NDPP

Poll: 25% of Athens School Children Going Hungry

http://www.keeptalkinggreece.com/2015/02/12/poll-25-of-athens-school-chi...

Thousands of Greek school children face one of the toughest aspects of the economic crisis: starvation and hunger. Last week, teachers complained one more time about pupils who faint in the classroom due to starvation.."

 

From Minsk To Brussels, It's All About Germany  -  by Pepe Escobar

http://rt.com/op-edge/232087-merkel-germany-eu-greece-ukraine

"Germany holds the key to where Europe goes next. A fragile deal may have been reached on Ukraine, but there's still no deal with Greece. In both cases, there's much more than meets the eye. Sooner or later European politicians will have to wake up and small the coffee; the notion of a German-French-Russian pan European peace/trade partnership is way more popular than reflected in the failed corporate media.

Now it's up to Germany to clean up its act on Greece. The choice is stark. The EU may embark on a quadruple-dip recession as the ECB further destroys what is left of the European middle class. Or Germany, reflecting the thinking among its captains of industry, may tell the EU  -  Troika included - that the way to go is to shift the strategic, trade and political focus from West to the East.

That would start by stuffing the corporate US-devised TTIP treaty - that's NATO on trade. After all, this is going to be the Eurasian century - and this train has already left the station."

NDPP

No Deal: Greece-EU Bailout Talks Break Down, Athens Given 1 Week Ultimatum (and podcast)

http://rt.com/business/232887-greece-eu-talks-break/

"Greece rejects Eu bailout offer as 'absurd'..."

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Rallies in Greece, around world ahead of eurozone ministers' bailout talks

Tens of thousands of people gathered in central Athens on Sunday to support the newly elected government's push for a better deal on Greece's debt. Similar rallies were held in several other Greek cities, and about 40 other anti-austerity demonstrations were planned to show solidarity across Europe and in Australia, Brazil and the United States.

The rallies came on the eve of a meeting of eurozone finance ministers that will address Greece’s unpopular bailout.

In Lisbon about 300 people took to the streets with banners reading "Greece, Spain, Portugal, our battle is international."

In Athens, between 15,000 and 18,000 protesters carried banners denouncing economic austerity and Greece's creditors.

"We want justice here and now ... for all the suffering Greece has gone through the past five years," 58-year-old Theodora, who has been unemployed for the last three years, told Agence France-Presse.

A protester wearing a mask of German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble and wielding a large plastic needle with "austerity" daubed on it jousted with a fake Greek Premier Alexis Tsipras, armed with a huge pair of red scissors....

http://america.aljazeera.com/articles/2015/2/15/rallies-in-greece-around...

 

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Syriza in a bind

We knew that the Syriza experience would provide an object lesson in politics, with all the fundamental bases of power and sovereignty being laid bare as the legal and financial niceties evaporated. And here we are: even sooner than we expected.

As we could also have expected, the nerve centre of this power play is in Frankfurt, at the European Central Bank. No article in the European treaties provides any legal basis for showing a member state the door – but the ECB can do so, entirely of its own discretion and without any process or democratic control. And it’s just given us a foretaste of this, just ten days after an ‘unsuitable’ government came to power backed by a popular movement, having the sheer gall to demand an end to the insane torment to which our dear Europe has subjected Greece. That is, a country in the heart of the European Union that’s been forced into a situation of humanitarian crisis [1] – indeed, forced into it by the EU. After a few other similar examples, we ought to think of using this country’s experience to formulate a legal concept of  ‘economic persecution’ – as well as saying who the persecutors are. On the receiving end is the Greek people, which has given itself a legitimate government with a mandate to end this state of persecution. It is a sovereign government....  

quote:

Everyone abandons Syriza

They’re bastards. All of them, everywhere. Reuters revealed the gist of a German report drafted in the run-up to the 5 February finance ministers’ meeting [3]: ‘No’ to everything. No and nothing: the two great watchwords of European-democracy-in-compliance-with-the-treaties. Should we deduce that Germany is alone responsible for this tough line? Come off it: all of them are. Neither Spain nor Ireland nor – most shameful of all – ‘socialist’ France came to Syriza’s aid. For a very simple reason: none of them have the slightest interest in this alternative lasting – why, it might even succeed! And then what would these gentlemen look like, having imposed destruction on their populations all for nothing? Well, they’d look like what they are. Imbeciles, as well as bastards....

http://www.versobooks.com/blogs/1852-frederic-lordon-syriza-in-a-bind

Tom Vouloumanos

Hi all,

Here's an interview of me by Znet, this interview also appeared on TeleSUR (in which there are hyperlinks) and in Sto Kokkino (a good media resource owned by Syriza).

This interview deals with the prospects of more radical social transformation of Greece by Syriza and the need for an International Solidarity Movement.

Syriza is the only governing party inside NATO and the North American/Western European dominion that is challenging the neo-liberal ideology head on.

I think Syriza merits attention from left, anti-neolliberal and even anti-capitalist activists as a first beachhead against the dominant neoliberal dogma in the North-Western world.

 

For those interested, here is Understanding Syriza: https://zcomm.org/znetarticle/understanding-syriza/ 

 

josh

Clear evidence that Germans don't care about debt repayment.  They care about imposing Disaster Capitalism:

 

European creditors a last-moment proposal on Thursday meant to unfreeze talks on its bailout program and end uncertainty over its future in the euro. But hopes of a deal at an emergency meeting of eurozone finance ministers on Friday were dampened by Germany, the main creditor.

The Greek government offered to extend its rescue loan agreement by six months, as the 19-country eurozone had demanded in order to give all sides more time to hash out a more permanent deal.

It held back, however, on offering to continue in full a series of budget cuts and reforms that the eurozone has required since 2010 in exchange for loans, but that Greece blames for devastating its economy.

German Finance Ministry spokesman Martin Jaeger said in a statement it "is not a substantial proposal for a solution."

http://abcnews.go.com/International/wireStory/greek-shares-steady-investors-await-bailout-proposal-29070579

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Syriza will have to choose between Scylla and Charybdis

quote:

After Monday’s emergency talks collapsed in acrimony, Eurogroup Chairman Jeroen Dijsselbloem added an ultimatum to make Syriza’s options even more explicit: either the government accepts an extension of the existing bailout program by Wednesday evening, or Greece will simply be cut off from further credit by February 28.

Since Greece remains dependent on foreign financing to service its outstanding obligations and fight the deep humanitarian crisis at home, this would put the leftists in the awkward position of having to choose between honoring their obligations to foreign creditors, who expect the debt to be repaid in full and who continue to insist on strict fiscal discipline, or honoring their obligations to Greek pensioners and civil servants, who have collectively pinned their hopes on Syriza’s pledges to defy the creditors and put an end to austerity. In a word, repaying one will require defaulting on the other.

This Homeric dilemma is in turn forcing Syriza to confront a long-standing internal rift among party cadres over the merits of continued eurozone membership. Syriza’s moderate leadership, which according to central committee member Stathis Kouvelakis has steadily distanced itself from the party base in recent years, remains committed to the euro and aims to reform its fiscal and monetary architecture. Inspired by Keynesian visions of demand management and public investment, Tsipras and Varoufakis hope to wield the failure of austerity in Greece as a wedge to transform Europe as a whole.

But not everyone inside Syriza shares this “good euro” vision. The party’s rank-and-file, and especially its radical internal opposition — the so-called Left Platform — holds a very different view, insisting that Greece should keep all its weapons on the table, including the threat of unilateral default and a “progressive exit” from the eurozone. The Left Platform, in other words, would like to see Syriza face down Scylla to avoid Charybdis, defying the Eurogroup to save the ship and evade a lethal debt-deflationary spiral inside the monetary union — even if this comes at a high cost.

Inspired in part by the analyses of SOAS economist Costas Lapavitsas, who is now a Syriza MP, the Left Platform has a more pessimistic analysis of power relations within the monetary union. Unlike the party leadership and Finance Minister Varoufakis, Lapavitsas believes that continued eurozone membership will sink Syriza’s radical project before the leftists even get a chance to hoist their sails or raise their weapons. The internal opposition therefore intends to wield what they consider to be the inevitable failure of the debt negotiations as a wedge to progressively pull Greece out of the euro....

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