Nikolai Huke, David Bailey, Mònica Clua-Losada, Julia Lux, Olatz Ribera Almandoz
02 May 2018
EU institutions and governments responded to the Eurozone crisis with a combination of austerity and authoritarianism that increased precarity and eroded liberal democracy. However, a survey of social movements shows that this technocratic depoliticization was only partially successful as the increasing exclusion of people from democratic decision-making also sparked novel forms of organizing that have opened up potential avenues for radical social change.
This paper dissects the Japanese bubble economy in the late 1980’s and early 1990’s and the Asian Financial Crisis in 1997-98 and shows how they shaped Asia’s capacity to deal with and respond to the 2008 global financial crisis. It looks at how China emerged seemingly unscathed, but warns that the inroads of speculative financial capital into China and East Asia along with ongoing problems of over-production means that a future financial crisis is highly probable.
The derailment of progressive Keynesianism by Obama’s conservative, technocratic Keynesianism resulted in a protracted recovery, continuing high unemployment, millions of foreclosed or bankrupt households fending for themselves, and more scandals in a Wall Street where nothing had changed. Obama did not pay for this tragic outcome in 2012, but Hillary Clinton did in 2016.
Walden Bello shares some reflections on the meaning of Seattle for change in knowledge systems, discusses how despite the deep crisis of neoliberalism, finance capital has managed to retain tremendous power, and appeals for a new comprehensive vision of the desirable society.
Against all expectations, financial capital has emerged even stronger after the financial crisis having staved off regulation and putting the blame on public spending. But its victory is likely a pyrrhic one as a new crisis looms, one in which the global public could learn from victories such as reforms in Iceland and finally reassert its control over money.
Despite the strong and growing resistance in Greece and other European countries to the direction of EU policy responses to the crisis, the process for this new treaty has unfolded with disquieting speed: initiated in November, an agreement was already reached by end of January among the EU25. This comes at the expense of stifling democratic debate and, indeed, shortcutting the normal consultative procedures in the treaty process through legal manoeuvres.
Ten years and two wars later, Americans face the monetary and psychological costs of both militarism and Wall Street materialism, effectively bankrupting the country; not to mention the casualties of war at home, and in Afghanistan and Iraq.
Until the European Commission shows it has learnt the lessons of the 2008 financial crisis and demonstrates the political will to re-regulate the financial sector, it will be unable to resolve the crises in Greece, Ireland and Portugal
The Greek crisis has exposed the fundamental flaws in the Euro project: it stripped countries control over the price of money and allowed political elites to undermine Europe's post-war social contract.
On 8 June the EU Parliament will vote on our response to the Eurocrisis: sign this petition by ATTAC asking them to reject the neoliberal austerity package which will make the public pay for the bank's crimes. There are alternatives to austerity.
Three years since the outbreak of the global financial crisis, the banks are back making mega-profits while the burden has clearly shifted to citizens and workers. However civil society action at European level could still make a difference in reining in the financial sector.
Behind the currency wars and the worsening global economic crisis lies a largely unquestioned free trade model that both contributed to the crisis and, without radical reform, is a major obstacle to overcoming it.