Monday, August 29, 2016

Them's Fighting Words

You can go but the furniture stays, all of it.

That's sort of the message from German economy minister, Sigmar Gabriel, in response to Brexit, the UK's departure from the European Union.

The world now regarded Europe as an unstable continent, said Gabriel, who is the deputy to chancellor Angela Merkel in Germany’s governing coalition.

“If we organise Brexit in the wrong way, then we’ll be in deep trouble, so now we need to make sure that we don’t allow Britain to keep the nice things, so to speak, related to Europe while taking no responsibility,” Gabriel said.

...EU leaders are refusing to countenance a “Europe a la carte” by letting Britain select the parts of its future relationship that it may like, such as access to the bloc’s single market of 500 million consumers, while dispensing with EU principles such as the free movement of people.


Dana said...

Good. Given the bellicose history of the continent it's better that the European Union survive and thrive even if it means Great Britain doesn't.

The Mound of Sound said...

I agree. Those who argue that the E.U. has been instrumental in preventing any European war for a remarkably long interval can't be dismissed.

Toby said...

Yet the economic benefits of the EU have not worked their way down to the working classes. I'd have voted Brexit too. I'd vote to dump NAFTA if given the chance. Yes, we need international agreements but the trade deals we have are simply means to bilk the masses.

Anonymous said...

The EU has nothing to do with preventing war or "peace love and unity" or any other such nonsense. European oligarchs have captured the entire European continent by creating an empire to force neoliberal reforms on social-democratic people who would never vote for them.

The evil empire is founded on three ECONOMIC principles: 1) free trade (Germany is more mercantilist than China which is causing economic misery for the rest of Europe: they have to run accompanying trade and budget deficits; since they can't run budget deficits they must implement fiscal austerity); 2) common currency area (terrible economic policy designed to impose fiscal austerity via empire-wide monetary policy: see "Robert Mundell, evil genius of the euro".); 3) free-market borders (whose entire purpose is to flood EU member states with ILLEGAL immigrants to outsource jobs, not already gone, internally.)

These robber barons looting the European continent of vast sums of wealth is not going to bring peace. It's going to bring world war. The economy will collapse and when it does fascist revolutions will break out.

What created post-war peace? New Deal economic prosperity unprecedented in human history. What created WW2? Economic collapse, which caused some European nations to reject capitalism and democracy for fascism.

When I saw Michael Moore's "Where to Invade Next" I saw how the world would end. The establishment uses the PC religion to divide and conquer society. If you don't agree with free market ideology and globalization you're a racist, misogynist, homophobe (add any other to the list that comes into your head.) Now in Germany they are rubbing German noses in shit for the Holocaust. Brings a tear to the eyes of white-guilt liberals, for sure. But there will soon come a time when a revenge-driven alpha-wannabe like Hitler will rise in the political ranks and create a fascist movement in reaction to German noses being rubbed in it.

Liberals don't understand human nature. They just look down on it. Which makes them terrible leaders. And they are being used by oligarchs to impose tyranny on the people. Liberals look the other way while their politicians take bribes flagrantly, betray their promises, and impose harsher and harsher economic conditions on the people while giving the rich more and more free money and power.

The only thing that can save humanity from WW3 and nuclear holocaust is a (Green) New Deal implemented by a US president. We should never have abandoned the progressive era in the first place. My guess is that the 2020 US presidential election is humanity's last chance. Once fascist revolutions break out, it's game over. Three strikes and you're outta there!

Unknown said...

There is nothing democratic about EU. They are through NATO a military arm of the US. The US dictates and they follow, especially France and Germany. Anon's analysis is right on.

Anonymous said...

And there waits Donald Trump whose Grandfather was born in Germany. We don't have to wonder why Trump keeps a copy of Mine Kemp on his night table do we?

Boris said...

Anon, under the EU free-movement guarantees, there's no such thing as "illegal immigrants". Those entering the EU as refugees are also dealt with through legislation pertaining to them. "Flood" is hardly the term. Free movement for EU citizens also gives citizens any country suffering economic hardship the ability to move to find work. Yes, that's kind of neoliberal, but not in the same way as trade agreements (like the ones Canada signs) that have no movement provision.

There is also nothing in the EU that prevents national governments from promoting social welfare policies that look after their working classes and poor. That the UK hasn't done that is entire its own fault, just as the Brexit vote (incidentally championed by wealthy elites, including Farage) is a misdirected protest by the ignorant (but righteously upset) against the failure of successful national governments to look after them.

Anonymous said...

Labor mobility is another bunch of BS parading around as technocracy. Krugman says it's virtually non-existent in the EU. BS piled on top of BS.

Canadians are hypocrites to be haughty over the culture clashes making the news. We don't have porous borders to worry about like the EU and the American South. But when the Sea Sun brought a shipload of refugees from the sudden end to the Sri Lankan civil war, we charged the captain and crew as human smugglers. (They obviously weren't smuggling anyone into the country.) This sent a clear signal to others: no immigration anarchy for us. If we don't want it, why would we want to inflict it on Americans and Europeans?

Immigration anarchy is a dumb policy. It's causing tensions to rise. It has no function but to provide cheap under-the-table labor. Legitimate immigration is a different story. Immigrants contribute to the economy like anyone else. Illegals take jobs away from people and piss them off.

Like I pointed out in the previous post, there is A LOT 'preventing national governments from promoting social welfare policies.' More pompous nonsense. Germany's big trade surplus causes other countries to run trade deficits; they have accompanying budget deficits according to the Twin Deficits hypothesis. They have budgetary constraints that force austerity. If these nations had their own currencies the trade accounts would balance out as the mercantilist nation's currency rises. But with a common currency, there's never-ending economic misery. Mainstream economists like Simon Wren-Lewis and Paul Krugman oppose what Germany is doing.

Robert Mundell, called the architect of the euro -- the common currency area -- had previously written a paper saying the optimal currency area occurs when countries have their own currencies and central banks. He was advising the complete opposite of what he and Friedman believed in when designing the eurozone! It doesn't get more obviously corrupt than that! He literally created a monetary-policy time bomb to blow up Europe's socialist safety net.

The eurozone is intractable. There is no fixing it. If you have an empire-wide currency and central bank, there have to be fiscal transfers among the 'provinces' to equalize out living standards. The Holy Neoliberal Empire will never go for that; despite Krugman and Wren-Lewis constantly bleating about it.

The European central bank is run with an iron fist. They triggered a recession in 2011 fighting imaginary inflation which was actually an external food price shock. Boneheaded or corrupt? Probably the latter. They brought the Greek economy to its knees when they voted to end the austerity. That was violating a nation's democratic will! Absolutely outrageous! The entire empire is designed to thwart the will of the people from on high. The way they are putting the screws to the 'PIGS' shows it's an evil empire indeed. One that is doomed to collapse. I'm hoping peacefully.

Anonymous said...

The market fundamentalists, corrupt politicians and looting robber barons have no idea what they're doing. Their economic doctrine is all nakedly self-serving. It's the most absurd thing in the universe. Rent-seeking piled on top of rent-seeking in so many slimy ways. They keep leeching more and more as if there's an unlimited supply to mooch off of.

But since this is not a circular process, and there's a limited amount that people and governments can borrow, it puts the global economy on a path to a deleveraging crisis that triggers a deflationary death spiral when people begin to pay down debt. Like the 1930s. Economic collapse will cause fascist revolutions in Europe. Then the world is in really big trouble.

Establishment looting and corruption is out of control. Only a New Deal can clean up the mess these people have made of the world. Just like the people ushered in the last time around under the exact same circumstances in the 1930s. This time we have to implement the Green New Deal BEFORE fascist revolutions break out. We won't survive another world war. That much should be obvious.

crf said...

The lack of trade barriers to the EU is baked into the current economy of Britain, and it will be worse off if they are lost. The largest example is automakers trading vehicles and parts between Britain and the rest of the EU. A lot of the trade Britain has with the rest of the world is for products and services that are then modified in Britain, and then traded on to other parts of the EU. Furthermore, the EU rules make bilateral negotiation of trade issues between EU and non-EU members illegal: it will be hard, even if it is both entities interest, to formulate a new trade deal.

The worse aspect of the EU is the Euro, and that, of course, didn't direct affect Britain, and it is hard to see how Brexit does anything about this Euro problem. The second biggest problem in the EU is the expansion of EU bureaucracy into sovereign areas of government. This is the one problem will be ameliorated with Brexit in Britain.

crf said...

Here's an article on theme of Brexit's potential negative effects on the auto sector:
Japan fires warning shot over Brexit. If automakers in the UK can't export to the rest of Europe, then manufacturing facilities in the UK will die.