There shouldn’t be anymore disagreement over the utter failure of European economic policies – debt levels are not exactly going down, unemployment (especially for young people) is way to high, growth is non-existent (0,5% for the Netherlands is considered a success!) and worst of all, deflation may be around the corner, making all of the problems above much worse. And that is without taking into consideration the rise of right-wing nationalism such as in France, the Netherlands, Finland and perhaps most vicious of all, Hungary. Also Spain has decidedy undemocratic tendencies regarding the right to express opinion.
In short, Europe is falling to pieces as we stand. And that is not a place where I want my children to grow up. Current law doesn’t allow I guess this but in my opinion many of the current politicians (especially also in Brussels) should be tried for gross mismanagement. Finland is a great country but in a way it is Greece circa 2010: digging its hole of economic misery deeper and deeper by trying to keep the government budget under control, in the face of a sinking economy and deficient aggregate demand. I don’t like that one bit, because it is precisely the wrong policy. But you know, rules are rules and you should stick to the rules, and especially when it is really difficult you should throw some sisu in to show that you are toughing it out.
Fortunately, there are some that have thought about the Eurocrisis agreat deal and propose solutions that don’t need Treaty changes nor should be politically unacceptable. The two models I like most are by Jamie Galbraith, Yanis Varoufakis and Stuart Holland on the hand and by Jörg Bibow on the other hand. Both have their merits and it is possible to merge them in a ‘super-proposal’, I guess. The Modest Proposal is my final choice though, because it seems to be much more active about investment and also is very thought through in terms of practical implications.
By the way, the Finnish version of The Global Minotaur will be released in roughly two weeks and Yanis Varoufakis will be in Finland for this reason, also being a keynote speaker in the Power, Culture and Economy –conference in Tampere later this month.