IMF: Confessing to the sin in order to repeat it

This could be a valuable lesson for those in the US of A to use in drawing conclusions about the effectiveness of AUSTERITY.

“The only two differences between 2012 and 2015 are that: (A) In 2015/6 the Greek economy is ever more frail than it was in 2012, its people closer to the edge of desperation. And (2) In 2012 the troika’s toxic, illogical ‘program’ was being implemented by a government representing the corrupt, oligarchic ancien regime responsible for the crisis. In 2015/6 the troika’s ‘new’ toxic, illogical ‘program’ is being implemented by a government of the Left, thus denying the Greeks the hope that elections could stop the unnecessary pain.” [excerpt]

Yanis Varoufakis

Screen Shot 2016-07-31 at 13.53.56.pngYou have read about the most recent IMF confession over its immolation of Greece. The question is: Does it signal a change in policies? Do not hold your breath! Recent history is pointing to a repetition of the crime-against-logic first committed in 2012 – an IMF tactic of confessing to the sin in order to repeat it with impunity!

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The IMF confesses it immolated Greece on behalf of the Eurogroup

…an urgent apology is due to the Greek people, not just by the IMF but also by the ECB and the Commission whose officials were egging the IMF on with the fiscal waterboarding of Greece. But an apology and a collective mea culpa from the troika is woefully inadequate. It needs to be followed up by the immediate dismissal of at least three functionaries.

… Mr Poul Thomsen – the original IMF Greek Mission Chief… Mr Thomas Wieser, the chair of the EuroWorkingGroup… [and] Mr Klaus Masuch of the ECB.

Finally, and most importantly, the apology and the dismissals will count for nothing if they are not followed by a complete U-turn over macroeconomic, fiscal and reform policies for Greece and beyond.

Yanis Varoufakis

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On the Purpose of a Movement

Before I begin: Let me take a moment to make something perfectly clear––I don’t care who started the institution of slavery not even the institution of chattel slavery, nor do I care who participated in that institution, nor when they participated in it, nor do I care who sold whom to whom. All of that is mere history and cannot be altered and we should not attempt to alter our understanding of that history. We should only attempt to understand our history as clearly and concisely as possible with as few misconceptions as possible.

Lessons of History JPEG

This movement, to remove all emblems of that Southern Confederacy from my state’s official emblems, that I am involved with is not about those emblems themselves nor really even about the ideologies behind those particular emblems as reprehensible as those ideologies were and still are; rather, this movement is about EXTENDING THE RIGHT OF DIGNITY TO ALL citizens of the Great State of Mississippi. A dignity that over a third of the citizens and/or residents of this great state is, in my opinion, besmirched by the use of emblems that were once used to defend the right of ancestors of one race to own the ancestors of another race as personal property or as chattel.

The only thing I care about is providing the conditions that will allow each and every person in the state of Mississippi – The Privilege To Live With The Dignity Of Being Thought Of And Treated As Fully Human.

BLM more then White Feelings

In my efforts to take references to the Confederate States of America from the official flag of my native state, Mississippi, many of the people I meet, mostly EuroAmericans, seem to think our efforts to remove those emblems are all about hating The Rebel Flag.

Because my Granny always told me:

“We don’t hate things; we dislike them,”

thus, I, for one, do not hate the flag. However, having read the proceedings of the secession conventions of as many of the seceding states that I have so far been able to find (seven as of now) I do find that the ideology behind those emblems and symbols is reprehensible. I repeat: I find their justifications and rationales reprehensible. As the symbols those men chose to represent their reprehensible ideals carry with them the disdain the designers (of those symbols) held for their chief commodity I find the use of those emblems equally reprehensible. That commodity was AFRICAN SLAVES (which those men held as chattel or as personal possessions.

Inspection of Slaves

Point of curiosity: the most valuable commodity in the antebellum south was a 14 or 15 year old virgin–the lighter her skin the more valuable she was. Her price in today’s money could be as high as seventy thousand dollars––that is $70,000 for one human being.)

Ninety-five plus precent of the paper and ink that those men used to justify their actions in seceding from the Union and forming their “Southern Confederacy” was directly related to what they, themselves, called the The Institution of African Slavery: aka, That Institution Vital to the Southern Way of Life, Our Peculiar Institution, as well as, The Institution upon which The Southern Way of Life is Built and others. I emphasize these euphemisms for the enslavement of their fellow human beings because those euphemisms are quotes lifted directly from their documents that they produced in their own hand on their own paper with their own ink in efforts to justify their own actions to secede from the US of A so they could form a regional government which would allow them to continue, ad infinitum, to profit from the cheapest form of labor they could imagine. An effort made, even, at any cost of the lives of approximately one and a quarter million (1,250,000) American lives [over half of which were their fellow southerners. The vast majority of those fellow southerners were poor as if a man owned twenty or more slaves he was not obligated to fight to protect that insane institution he profited so greatly from; plus any man who could afford it could buy his way out of serving in the War which was the case with most Slaveholders (point of fact: this latter fact was true on both sides of the war as in almost all wars of the modern era.)]

Slaves in the Field 3

This movement is about providing an emblem that will allow each and every Mississippian the right and privilege to be able to choose to feel pride in their state’s official emblem.

Then there is the eternal nihilistic comment:

“You won’t change that many minds.” 

The truth is I’m not expecting to change any minds for no one can change any other persons mind: only the person him/herself can change his/her own mind by what he/she chooses to think and feel. I do, however, hope to influence a few of those whose minds are not already set, as if in stone.

This I hope to do primarily through education and a rational and reasoned explanation of the need to have a symbol common to all Mississippians that allows each Mississippian an opportunity to feel equally represented by their state’s flag.

Strange Friut 4

It should be the right and privilege of each and every citizen of any body politic to be equally and fairly represented by the flag of their nation, state or locality: that is, to be represented by an emblem not representative of a war “to maintain the heavenly ordained supremacy of the white man over the inferior or colored race,” as stated by William T. Tappan gave in a description for his design of the Confederate National Flag*.

Even the most marginalized resident of a state, like all other citizens of any juridical district, deserves to have a flag flying over the executive, legislative and judicial branches where their government is housed. Even the most marginalized resident deserves to have a flag that fairly represents them without prejudice flying over their courthouses and city halls where they are subject to be tried and sentenced to jail or prison, and where they pay their taxes, etc. Even the most marginalized resident deserves to have their children educated in schools over which flies a flag that does not represent a history nor a heritage that “rests upon the great truth, that the negro is not equal to the white man; that slavery — subordination to the superior race — is his natural and normal condition.” Alexander Stevens VP of the Confederacy**.

A Little BBQ 2          A little BBQ

Each and every citizen of this and every state deserves and has the right to be represented as fully human with all the rights, privileges and dignity of any and all other human beings. 

Am I not a Woman?          Am I not a man?

*As a people we are fighting to maintain the heavenly ordained supremacy of the white man over the inferior or colored race; a white flag would thus be emblematical of our cause. Such a flag would be a suitable emblem of our young confederacy, and sustained by the brave hearts and strong arms of the south, it would soon take rank among the proudest ensigns of the nations, and be hailed by the civilized world as THE WHITE MAN’S FLAG.”


Roger W. Mills II

EU ECONOMICS MEETS DEMOCRACY – interviewed by the Green European Journal

There is an architecture in Europe, and the powers that be can’t accept that that architecture is not fit for purpose, and they want to preserve it in spite of this. But they even disagree among themselves. The reason the Franco-German axis is falling apart is because we have an economic structure which has imploded. The key to answering your question is this: German and French Ministers of Finance, Mr Schaüble and Mr Macron, for instance, fundamentally disagree on what design is needed to replace the current model. And while the two elephants in the room are clashing, the mice suffer and, instead of fixing the architecture, they buy time putting plaster on the cracks. It is a political failure. And this is where we, progressives from Europe and Europeanists, must come in, because these two will never get it together.

Democracy is a combination of majoritarianism and rule of law and respect for individual rights. You cannot pick and choose. It’s all or nothing. If you have a group of misanthropists, there is no system of government that can produce results. There is no doubt about it. The only reason that ultra-nationalism is raising its ugly head is because Europe [and America in some sense] is failing and because it has annulled… democracy in the centres of power. And whenever you do that, and you combine negative interest rates and inflation in some parts of the Union, then, just like in the 1930s, the scapegoating phenomenon will emerge. People will need to point fingers at somebody tangible next to them – they cannot understand an abstract concept like inflation or the capitalist crisis – so it’s the [Mexican or the Muslim], or the Other that gets scapegoated.

Yanis Varoufakis

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The architecture of the European Union institutions is flawed. Its leaders seem to deny the ineffectiveness of the response given to the financial and economic crisis as we see inequality and extremism on the rise. The European Union will be unprepared for the next crisis unless it profoundly reforms its governance and enhances democracy.

Screen Shot 2016-07-22 at 10.35.00.pngToday in Europe we see it being bashed, mistrusted, and loaded with negative emotional charges. Why? What do you think are the big disintegration forces at play today in Europe?

Yanis Varoufakis: The European Union is a construct which was simply not fit for purpose. 

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On homelessness, street papers & Brexit – in The Big Issue

“Europeans are turning against the European Union because of its hypocrisy. When it suits the established order to interfere, they interfere in a way that is akin to invasion. Last year they shut down our banking system to impose cuts upon the Greek government. In 1967 we had a coup d’état using tanks, last year we had a coup d’état using banks. There can be no greater interference in the life of a country than to close down its banks. And at other times, when you have clearly misanthropic government interventions which violate the rulebook of the European Union, as we do today in Hungary, in Poland, in Romania, sadly interference is not an important principle. Any union that disrespects consistency to such an extent eventually turns its people against it. And I say this as someone who does not want to see the European Union disintegrated but who feels that it is increasingly difficult to convince people out there that we should not allow it to perish.”

Yanis Varoufakis

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Yanis Varoufakis on the consequences of Brexit – and why homelessness in Greece is set to rapidly escalate

Click here for The Big Issue sire or…

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On the present and future of capitalism – my TED debate with Dambisa Moyo

We have the largest saving rate in the history of capitalism and the lowest investment rate, and this imbalance is at the bottom of the various manifestations of a crisis that’s been happening now for a while. 2008 as far as I’m concerned, was our generation’s 1929. In exactly the same way that after 1929 the world ceased to make sense in terms that people used to understand their world prior to 1929. After 2008, it’s a different ballgame. If you look between the 1940s and 2008, we have a situation where the United States of America was playing a rather efficient but complicated role in global recycling [of saved income]. Recycling [income] surpluses from where they were being produced to where there were deficits. Initially in the first twenty years after Bretton Woods, America was a surplus country and it was recycling its own surpluses politically, using political machinations, I mean, the Marshall Plan is just one example.

But with the end of Bretton Woods, which happened because America lost surpluses and could no longer recycle a surplus it didn’t have, we moved into completely different phase, again with America in the driving seat, where the American economy, through its strong deficit spending, was recycling everybody else’s surpluses. It didn’t have surpluses to recycle itself so it recycled other people’s surpluses by acting as a huge vacuum cleaner that was sucking into American territory. That broke down in 2008. Wall Street has lost the capacity to do this recycling in a way that maintains savings and investment. And the fact that our political sphere is imploding is a reflection of the breakdown of this global recycling mechanism. ~ Yanis Varoufakis

Yanis Varoufakis

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Who was planning a coup? Tom Strohschneider in Neues Deutschland

“However, because Varoufakis embodied that which public opinion had been criticising throughout Europe since January 2015 – an anti-politician, an intellectual in office, an economist who was suddenly faced with the business of politics – this finance minister remained the center of indignant headlines until just a few months ago. But now that Varoufakis has founded a movement to continue his fight for solidarity in Europe, the opposition in Greece isattempting to blame Tsipras himself for defending against Grexit.”

“The newspaper’s source: a German government official who was familiar with the negotiations of the time. “What shocked us about the discussion paper was the way in which they laid down the conditions for Greece remaining in the eurozone. The conditions were so humiliating that they appeared to have the goal for Greece to reject them.” This would have resulted in Grexit.

So who here really pursued a “Plan B”? Looking back, Galbraith writes that it had not been the task of his working group to make recommendations for a euro exit. So they had not made any. “We prepared for a scenario that everyone hoped to be able to avoid.” The ones planning a coup were certainly not the Yanis Varoufakis group.” [excerpts]

Yanis Varoufakis

Screen Shot 2016-07-20 at 13.04.50.pngThis article by Tom Strohschneider was first published in the German newspaper Neues Deutschland. Read the German original here or the English version on the DiEM25 site. 

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