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The narrative around here seems to be: The IMF is protecting us from Europe (notice that I've written Europe, not just the EU/ECB). Even today there is a new piece (about banking bailouts) in this direction.

Now, can you imagine the psychological consequences of this? One way or the other, the view about Europe is taking a massive beating.

If this continues in this direction, we will be on each others throats soon.

by cagatacos on Tue May 3rd, 2011 at 06:27:08 AM EST
[ Parent ]
The mood in Croatia, the only current accession country, is not very different.

Economics is politics by other means
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Tue May 3rd, 2011 at 06:30:23 AM EST
[ Parent ]
cagatacos:
The IMF is protecting us

'us' being europeans? earthlings?

cagatacos:

Now, can you imagine the psychological consequences of this? One way or the other, the view about Europe is taking a massive beating.

if europe was set up to stay a cash cow for the few, and that fact covered by noble blather about sociopolitical union so we wouldn't 'be on each others' throats (sic)' any more, then it seems the people themselves, ~especially the under 25's~ have embraced the blather and are still largely unaware of the dark machinations beneath the surface.

if europa is just a tool for the rich to get richer at the expense of the environment and the dispossessed, then what? will the people willingly give up their Schengen rights, their common currency, and their pride in being part of something greater than the sum of its sovereign parts, because the architects have run out of reasons to plunder, the system's tapped out, people don't want to borrow their way out of crises or live high on credit anymore, dreaming an uptick is guaranteed to raise their asset values.

so they save if they can, even though the rates tell them not to bother.

the thrill is gone, cheap consumerism is no longer more than the very short-termist of options. i think the IMF have seen the writing on the wall for capitalism as we knew it, and are bracing for the inevitable by leaning in a more humanistic direction, (covering their tracks?)

they know they have a ways to go before not being the first against the wall...

and the people....slowly... wake up to what happened to their wallets while their eyelids were closed.

if you remove the neolib/con  element from europe, what's left is really quite wonderful, a blend of many wisdoms, traditions, all intermingling so much more fluidly than before. it's easy to berate brussels bureaucrats, but many of them are conscientious and working in good faith that we are evolving a 'middle way' between the excess of asia and america. i still remain hopeful as to europe's social model, but it risks going down if we cannot accurately diagnose the rot that weakens it from the core, locate and dismiss it from the body politic, a promethean task, but one that if left to its own devices will make a wasteland of this fair continent.

the first step is to understand, especially history and context, which is why i come to ET. where else can you get such varied voices from all over the world, weighing in on such vitally misunderstood topics, and wading into subjects considered too arcane for most of us lowly plebs?

nowhere, that's where!


'The history of public debt is full of irony. It rarely follows our ideas of order and justice.' Thomas Piketty

by melo (melometa4(at)gmail.com) on Tue May 3rd, 2011 at 10:11:44 AM EST
[ Parent ]
melo:
The IMF is protecting us
'us' being europeans? earthlings?
The Portuguese.

Economics is politics by other means
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Tue May 3rd, 2011 at 10:13:10 AM EST
[ Parent ]
<quote>
if you remove the neolib/con  element from europe,
</quote>

This is the same as saying: If you remove all the governments of the Eurozone. Democratically elected governments, I might add.

I am not ready to do that.

by cagatacos on Tue May 3rd, 2011 at 03:04:53 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Yup, the problem is the Brussels Consensus, which is every bit as toxic today as the Washington Consensus was 15 years ago.

Economics is politics by other means
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Tue May 3rd, 2011 at 03:11:39 PM EST
[ Parent ]
And the solution is? Sincere question.
by cagatacos on Tue May 3rd, 2011 at 03:15:12 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The Brussels Consensus didn't come out of nowhere and the policy consensus was markedly different in the 1945-1970 period.

How does the Zeitgeist change? How does one change the Zeitgeist? In what direction can one expect the Zeitgeist to change after this decade? How can one try to influence the system to choose among the possible futures?

Economics is politics by other means

by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Tue May 3rd, 2011 at 03:24:14 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I will try to consume local (Iberian + Moroccan, in my case)

I will try to avoid consumption from structurally exporting nations (European or otherwise)

I will be anti-Ricardian (no to specialization, yes to local resiliency, no to globalization)

I will try to produce more than I consume (especially voluntary production)

I will turn to Latin America (especially Brasil - with an S, not with a Z!)

This is my answer.

by cagatacos on Tue May 3rd, 2011 at 04:13:37 PM EST
[ Parent ]
In one word, behave uneconomically.

Economics is politics by other means
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Tue May 3rd, 2011 at 05:16:06 PM EST
[ Parent ]
the belgians are pointing the way!

cagatacos:

If you remove all the governments of the Eurozone. Democratically elected governments, I might add.



'The history of public debt is full of irony. It rarely follows our ideas of order and justice.' Thomas Piketty
by melo (melometa4(at)gmail.com) on Tue May 3rd, 2011 at 07:30:48 PM EST
[ Parent ]

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