Varoufakis: "Do not be Fooled, the Crisis is not Over and the Euro is in Jeopardy"

Opinions | January 8, 2018, Monday // 16:50|  views

Source: Twitter

Polemic. Charismatic. Brilliant. Disputed. The six months of Yiannis Varoufakis (Athens, 1961), headed by the Treasury of Greece, won him world-renown, making him a sort of rockstar of European economic policy. Critics say he is a semi-leftist left-wing extremist, as he himself claims to be in love with powerful motorcycles, good restaurants, leather jackets and the attractive Greek islands. The three international creditors note that his government cost 100 billion euros to Greece. The softest criticism of his critics is that he is an intellectual whose immersion in politics, besides seeking glory, can be described as mediocre. On these criticisms, he recently responded with an exercise in literary roulette titled "Keeping Like Adults." In Spain his book was published recently by Deusto.

In it, the former Greek finance minister offers a unique view of the "kitchen" of Brussels and undoubtedly it is one of the books of 2017. On the 700 "delicious" pages, he explains, guilt of some mistakes, and mostly arranges unfinished bills in a high-pitched prose, which sounds and flashes to the right and left. Varufakis uses poisonous language and has done a destructive analysis for Europe. "Do not be fooled, the crisis continues, the euro is in jeopardy," he says in an interview with Pais. Europe is growing at a rate that exceeds 2%. Unemployment has fallen to 9%. Improving the state of deficits. Populism keeps on stumbling, but for now it remains in front of the government gates in the big countries. Finally, the European institutions are forerunning recovery. However, Varwakakis ignores these signals. "This is a cyclical reaction," he says, and all good data opposes mirroring unfavorable figures. And most of all, his forecasts are much less optimistic than the European elite.

"At the sharpest stage of the euro crisis, there were serious risks of fragmentation (of the euro area), and the European Central Bank (ECB) was able to oppose them, but the threats did not pass, although they took other forms: Brexit, failure to form a government, extreme right in Austria, Catalonia, the end of the two-party system in France, and authoritarian reflexes in Eastern Europe are clear symptoms of a grave illness, and major crises are moments for reassessing the gaps in the system: of the euro, and if nothing changes, we will be faced with the threat of gradual degradation of what we commonly call liberal democracy. "

Situation as it was in 2001

The worst has passed? No. Varoufakis, who founded a new party (DiEM 25) to fight the above-mentioned disease, laughs when he reminds him that almost always the apocalypse refutes his prophets: "The most pessimistic analysts, among whom are and mine did not fail in recent years, I'm sorry, but it is. "

The worst at least passed? "The current situation reminds me of the one we created in 2001: behind us, we had 20 years of ballooning, the dot-com balloon burst, and even after that, we continued our work and caused an even worse crisis with an even bigger bubble , which burst in 2008. We are faced with the risk of repeating old mistakes, in Spain, the total debt is rising, there is a capital leak, an emerging bank crisis, an explosive political situation, and the situation in Greece can not be called a recovery, and the debt can not be repaid In the whole periphery, we have replaced jobs with full employment with a partial and thus putting at risk future pensions and the foundations of the European economy.

Financial and macroeconomic imbalances not only do not diminish, but even increase: I am afraid we are not celebrating. The euro, what is today, is insecure. "

"The most worrying," according to the Greek, "is the low level of investment and rising differences in the eurozone." Without investment and convergence, it is impossible to talk about the end of the crisis, Europe is still in crisis: 10 years after Lehman's Brothers collapse, we are unable to strengthen the architecture of the euro, and this currency, contrary to the claims of its initiators, is a source of uncertainty: Europe is very rich and can hold this euro on its clay legs for some time but in a farther prospect, believe me, its shortcomings will come out light. "

Errors and Curses. Varoufakis says in his book that his destiny is a tragic hero. He mentions some mistakes he has made as a member of the government of Alexis Tsipras, although his self-criticism is not at the same height as his literary talent. However, it is worthwhile to pay attention to his analysis.

"Greece could not accept any agreement without restructuring its debt, which was and still is impossible to pay, but the creditors were not interested in paying: they just wanted to give Greece a lesson as a warning to other countries. Unfortunately, if you have bad cards, there is only one chance you can win if you bluff successfully and keep your temper completely, but if you believe the opponent will not retreat, you should not sit on the gaming table. I'm proud of the real scare, though short, which was born in the Troika, but we could not resist. " "Our defeat was enormous," says Varoufakis in his book. "I curse the government for failing to resist," he added in our conversation.

Luis de Gindos: "He is one of them." Varufakis criticized the European Commission. "The Eurogroup and even the Eurogroup working group are doing much more." Criticizes sharply, without any kind of delicacy, Jean-Claude Juncker (President of the European Commission), Pierre Moscovis (European Economic and Monetary Affairs Commissioner), Jerun Deisselblum (former President of the Eurogroup) and many others. Throughout the narrative of "Being an adult," the German (former) finance minister Wolfgang Schaeuble, who came up there to propose Greece's exit from the eurozone, barely "survived".

His analysis of Luis de Gindos (Spain's economy minister) is half-hearted: "We speak the same language because Gindos, unlike the large majority in the Eurogroup, understands economics.We had interesting discussions and in the closed door we are down- but at the meetings, Lewis was outrageous: his main goal was to sanction Greece to punish Poddemos (the Spanish left-wing radical party), and he always said that Schaeuble was right, with the same thing as with many others: in private conversations we could get to  but in the hour of truth they are not for nothing: from a democratic point of view, this is dishonest. "

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Tags: Varoufakis, book, Spain, EU


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