Invoking Alexander Hamilton in the context of the sensitisation achieved by Black Lives Matter could not be more inappropriate.
With ‘coronabonds’ stymied, an exit from the crisis had depended on ECB monetary operations—until the German constitutional court weighed in.
John Weeks argues in our ‘just transition’ series that its success is linked to a political message of hope.
Some orthodox economists predicted fiscal austerity would build confidence and so foster recovery. Yet at the end of the lost eurozone decade recession looms once more.
European integration began as a political project to institutionalize peace and cooperation, with the Coal and Steel Community the initial step. In the late 1980s and into the 1990s, roughly coinciding with the end of the Cold War, priorities changed – from peace and cooperation to trade competitiveness. The Treaty on European Union (TEU) formalized […]
Sending a Message In Chapter 5 of the Book of Daniel in the Old Testament of the Judeo-Christian Bible, mysterious writing begins to appear on a plaster wall during a feast presided over by the Babylon king Belshazzar. When none of the king’s wise men can interpret the writing, the Jewish captive Daniel provides its […]
On 17 November in Gothenburg, Sweden, EU leaders met for a “social summit”, presided over by Jean-Claude Juncker, President of the European Commission, who had also attended the previous one 20 years before. According to the official press release, a central purpose of this gathering of heads of government and EU officials was to proclaim […]
False Optimism from Brussels On September 13 in Strasbourg, the President of the European Commission Jean-Claude Juncker delivered his annual “state of the Union” address. Early in that speech, he assured his listeners: “We continue to make progress with each passing day”. I cannot help but wonder if President Juncker would now venture that same optimism, which […]
I and many others have argued that the basic EU treaties have flexibility to accommodate most social democratic policies such as those in the 2017 Manifesto of the UK Labour Party. Our argument may soon suffer a decisive blow from the EU parliament. In March 2012 twenty-five EU national governments signed the Treaty on Stability, […]
Where we are At the end of August Britain’s Labour Party formally announced its policy towards future relations with the European Union. The policy document explicitly “accepts the referendum result” and will “build a close new relationship with the EU”. The British media chose to emphasize not EU employment rights or environment protections but Labour’s […]
Babbling Brexit The British media provides a consistently misleading version of the process of UK disengagement from EU membership. The term used for this process, “Brexit”, is itself a substantial source of misguidance and obfuscation. The consistently poor reporting and misinterpretation have a clear cause. The British media continues to fight the in/out battle rather […]
There is a general perception in the UK that the remaining EU states, and Germany especially, would like to punish Britain for withdrawing from the European Union. This would mean Britain out in the cold, no trade deal, and potentially a fine to make up for lost payments. The problem here is that it is generally […]
In the wake of the formal invoking of Article 50 by Prime Minister Theresa May, no one knows with certainty the impact on the UK economy of leaving the European Union. Claims of imminent damage and possible disaster should be treated at best as informed speculation and at worst as more of the dysfunctional fear […]
In the wake of the Brexit referendum and with the Greek government once more facing the possibility of a forced Grexit, the limitations of EU governance loom large. Rather than bidding Britain a sad and reluctant adieu, “wayward sister go in peace”, some EU leaders seem intent on making the separation as expensive and unpleasant […]
Year of Referendum Disasters In 2016 the European Union both as an organization and hope for a better and more peaceful future suffered at least two serious and possibly mortal blows: the British “in/out” referendum gave a direct hit, while the constitutional plebiscite five months later in Italy delivered a glancing blow that might yet […]
Broad opposition in Europe to the Trans-Atlantic Trade and Investment Partnership has prompted its supporters to summon the “protectionist” spectre. In response to the criticism of TTIP by US presidential candidates and progressive politicians in Europe they, according to media reports, are talking up the end of “free trade” that has allegedly brought so many […]
History provides many examples of authoritarian rule achieved through formally democratic procedures. To these we should add the EU Treaty on Stability, Coordination and Governance (TSCG, also known as the “Six Pack”), adopted by 25 democratically elected EU governments (all but the Czech Republic and the United Kingdom). On an EU website we find the […]
The 1992 Treaty of Maastricht that lay the basis for the euro committed signing governments to several economic targets. Subsequent treaties and protocols made these targets stricter. The targets suffer from serious technical mis-specification. The problems of the criteria have their basis in a fundamental flaw that must be recognized and corrected to prevent further economic […]
With the returning regularity of a bad habit, the Financial Times reassures us that yet again German economic growth snatches the euro zone from the jaws of recession. Just a day later the same august source bemoaned “sluggish” growth in the euro zone. And a few days later the European Central Bank confirmed non-recovery with […]
Several years ago the idea that fiscal austerity could induce growth, “expansionary austerity”, had a brief flowering before withering under the heat of ridicule. Recently it resurfaced under a different name, “deflationary boom”. If expansionary austerity was oxymoronic, deflationary boom is simply moronic. To deconstruct and disinfect deflationary boom we need an operational definition of […]
If you read Larry Summers in the Financial Times, you know that recent data confirm falling prices in the euro zone. Summers argues that the deflation indicates global stagnation, though we find disagreement on the appropriate interpretation. For some it is no more than the transitory effect of falling petroleum prices. The focus on petroleum […]