Tag: Bailout

Sovereignty Regained? Ireland Exits the EU-IMF Bailout

Beneath the sur­face, des­per­a­tion and des­pond­ency abound in parts that fairy stor­ies simply can­not reach. The bailout will soon be over. No longer will Ireland have to be subjected to the interference of external powers in its affairs. No more humiliating conditionalities imposed by mild-mannered Troika functionaries with a stern economic vision. Instead, thanks to the credit…

Cypriots Discover the Debt Jubilee

Come again? Cypriots discover the debt jubilee? Well yes actually, that is basically how depositors at Cypriot banks have been treated by the Troika, even if the decision to grab up to 9.9% of cash deposits to finance a bail out of the finance sector is being presented as a tax or levy. To understand…

A Bailout of the People by the People – Will it Work?

From 15 November 2012, a part of the Occupy Movement in the U.S. led by Strike Debt will be operating a “Rolling Jubilee” which their website describes as:

“A bailout of the people by the people.

We buy debt for pennies on the dollar, but instead of collecting it, we abolish it. We cannot buy specific individuals’ debt — instead, we help liberate debtors at random through a campaign of mutual support, good will, and collective refusal.”

David Graeber, for example, has been tweeting about this enthusiastically and the Rolling Jubilee Facebook page has a picture of Slavoj Zizek holding the linked “Strike Debt” logo and a statement claiming that he too supports the campaign. My initial reaction to the plan was open-minded bemusement and a question which I see keeps recurring on the Rolling Jubilee FB page: “How does this work?.”

LIBOR: City absolutism and raison de marché

What’s the difference between Monaco and the City of London?  One is a micro-territory governed by absolute fiat, hollowed out by property speculation, gambling, and the concealment of great crimes of wealth, and the other is Monaco. In case your wondering, Monaco does have branches of HSBC and Barclays, and, if you need anything tricky…

The Greek Crisis as Racketeering

Sociologist Charles Tilly drew a compelling analogy between the state as the place of organised means of violence, and racketeering. He defined the racketeer “as someone who creates a threat and then charges for its reduction”, in order to gain control and consolidate power. In this regard, a state and its government differ little from…

The Irish Referendum: Fear Prevails

The result of the referendum on the Fiscal Treaty that took place yesterday in Ireland was a Yes in favour of the constitutional change that allows the neoliberal measures contained in the Treaty to implemented. There was a very low level of participation: around 50% of the electorate, and it can therefore be said that…

A European State of Prolonged Emergency

If we look at the post-2008 history of European and Member States’ legislation, we can clearly perceive the emergence and consolidation of a discourse of crisis and necessity, which has been used to abandon existing legal constraints and to dismantle the boundaries provided by the structure of the EU. Fortified by a narrative of apocalypse, illegality has been transformed into lawfulness.

Considering the famous 2009 judgment of the Federal Constitutional Court (Bundesverfassungsgericht) in Germany, we can affirm that according to the fundamental Treaties:

‘the European Union must comply with democratic principles as regards its nature and extent and also as regards to its own organisational and procedural elaboration. This means firstly that European integration may not result in the system of democratic rule [in Member States] being undermined. […]