#4 Utopian rules that can never work #5 intentional destruction of Sovereignty #6 Corporatocracy is in the EU’s DNA #7Hates the localism most people would prefer

Anne Pettifor writes this plain-speaking critique of the Single Currency:

‘The plain truth is that the euro is a product of utopian neoliberal economists and their ambitions for a monetary system governed only by market forces, beyond the reach of any European state. It is this utopian vision and its embodiment in ‘rules’ that is the cause of economic failure, divergence, social and political instability across member states…That utopianism is why the euro is doomed to failure.’

Ann Pettifor is Director of Policy Research in Macroeconomics (PRIME) and author of ‘Just Money: How Society Can Break the Despotic Power of Finance’, published by Commonwealth Publishing in January, 2014.

^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

Equally good is this one from Ellen Brown:

Former Greek finance minister Yanis Varoufakis is now being charged with treason for exploring the possibility of an alternative payment system in the event of a Greek exit from the euro. The irony of it all was underscored by Raúl Ilargi Meijer, who opined in a July 27th blog:

‘The fact that these things were taken into consideration doesn’t mean Syriza was planning a coup . . . . If you want a coup, look instead at the Troika having wrestled control over Greek domestic finances. That’s a coup if you ever saw one.

Let’s have an independent commission look into how on earth it is possible that a cabal of unelected movers and shakers gets full control over the entire financial structure of a democratically elected eurozone member government. By all means, let’s see the legal arguments for this.’

Were liquidity and insolvency problems intentionally generated in Greece’s case? Let’s review…writes Brown:

First there was the derivatives scheme sold to Greece by Goldman Sachs in 2001, which nearly doubled the nation’s debt by 2005.

Then there was the bank-induced credit crisis of 2008, when the ECB coerced Greece to bail out its insolvent private banks, throwing the country itself into bankruptcy.

This was followed in late 2009 by the intentional overstatement of Greece’s debt by a Eurostat agent who was later tried criminally for it, triggering the first bailout and accompanying austerity measures.

The Greek prime minister was later replaced with an unelected technocrat, former governor of the Bank of Greece and later vice president of the ECB, who refused a debt restructuring and instead oversaw a second massive bailout and further austerity measures. An estimated 90% of the bailout money went right back into the coffers of the banks.

In December 2014, Goldman Sachs warned the Greek Parliament that central bank liquidity could be cut off if the Syriza Party were elected. When it was elected in January, the ECB made good on the threat, cutting bank liquidity to a trickle.

When Prime Minister Tsipras called a public referendum in July at which the voters rejected the brutal austerity being imposed on them, the ECB shuttered the banks.

For a nation to regain control of its currency and credit, it needs a central bank with a mandate to serve the interests of the nation. Banking should be a public utility, serving the economy and the people.’

Ellen Brown is an attorney, founder of the Public Banking Institute, and author of twelve books including the best-selling Web of Debt. Her latest book, The Public Bank Solution, explores successful public banking models historically and globally. Her 300+ blog articles are at EllenBrown.com. Listen to “It’s Our Money with Ellen Brown” on PRN.FM.

^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

And here’s another belter from Helena Norberg-Hodge….I don’t buy into everything in the piece, but these extracts are bang on the money:

‘It is widely assumed that the European Union was formed in order to prevent conflict. This notion can be traced to the aftermath of the Second World War, when well-intentioned statesmen promoted the notion that economic integration was a path to peace and harmony. And until this day many idealists support the EU for this reason. However, for many in my network – particularly in Scandinavia – it was clear from the beginning that the EU was primarily about big business.Before countries were linked together into an economic union, Europe’s many regions were home to a great variety of cultures, languages and customs. But the Union erodes this rich diversity….None of these were obstacles to businesses operating within their own countries – in fact, the borders and cultural diversity helped protect the markets of domestic producers from the predations of mobile capital, helping to ensure their survival.   But for big corporations and financial institutions, diversity is an impediment, monoculture is ‘efficient’….the result was a form of economic development – based on debt, global trade and consumerism – that systematically favored corporate interests while hollowing out local economies worldwide….Neither the media nor academia has focused on the role of transnational banks and corporations in promoting this economic path….However, Greece reveals clearly where a centralized economy dominated by corporations and banks leads. In country after country, TNCs have been able to evade taxes by ‘offshoring’ their activities, and to bargain for lower tax rates and higher subsidies by threatening to move where even less in taxes will be demanded, and even more in subsidies provided…In the end, the economic problem in Greece is the product of a global system that puts the needs of corporations and banks ahead of people and the planet..

There is an alternative to starving our own people to enrich foreign banks: it involves moving away from ever-more specialized production for export, towards prioritizing diversified production to meet people’s genuine needs; away from centralized, corporate control, towards diverse, localized economies that are more equitable and sustainable. This means encouraging greater regional self-reliance, and using our taxes, subsidies and regulations to support enterprises embedded in society, rather than transnational monopolies.

Although the localization path is not yet visible in the media, more and more economists, environmentalists and social activists are embracing it. Awareness is growing, as people around the world recognize this simple truth: “we are all Greece.”’

Helena Norberg-Hodge is founder and director of Local Futures (International Society for Ecology and Culture). A pioneer of the “new economy” movement, she has been promoting an economics of personal, social and ecological well-being for more than thirty years.

^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^