Skip to main content

ECB's economic hitmen

globinfo freexchange

What was the trend in the last decade of the 20th century that ensured the dominance of neoliberal doctrines of capitalism across the planet? If your first response is the collapse of the former USSR and the Eastern bloc, think again. Behind the celebrations and observations about the alleged domination of liberal bourgeois democracy, one of the biggest attacks was held on peoples' rights to control even falsified, through representatives, the economy of their country.

Sawing off the branch on which it sat, the political establishment across the world began to offer different levels of independence to central banks. The political establishment obeyed to the dominant view among market participants, according to which, politicians through the provision of benefits to the people, cause extreme cyclical fluctuations in the economy, which only an independent central banker could balance. In fact, politicians, apart from the twig on which they sat were also sawing the tree of democracy. "The independence of central banks", Naomi Klein explained to me a few years ago, "is the mechanism by which markets explain to the politicians that they cannot play with their toys. It is the most important evidence that the markets are in an open war with democracy."

The European Central Bank not only could not be an exception in this situation but soon became the most ruthless "economic killer" who acted on behalf of commercial banks of countries such as Germany. Using the central bankers of member countries as a "fifth column", ECB managed to impose its positions in parliaments of weak countries when needed to overrule the governments that did not cooperate.

The fact that the European Union lacks political control mechanisms on such institutions, leaves ECB completely uncontrolled. In the US, where the FED enjoys the same "independence", would be considered unthinkable for the central banker to come into conflict with the interests of the federal government, for example by refusing to buy Treasuries to help the national economy to emerge from a crisis. Unlike in Europe, the ECB has refused several times to listen to the wishes of even the Eurogroup, declaring allegiance only in Berlin, or, in specific financial institutions.

As Barroso's former advisor Philippe Legrain revealed to the Greek Truth Commission for Public Debt, the refusal of ECB's previous president, Jean-Claude Trichet, to consider any potential restructuring of Greek debt in 2010, was aimed solely at rescuing certain French and German banks which were particularly exposed to Greek debt.

As the debt crisis deepened, leading the economies of the European region in hostage under the respective central banker of the eurozone, the ECB clearly took the role of an "economic hitman". While Washington had access, during previous decades, at CIA to ensure its dominance in South America, Berlin began in 2008 to entrust 'destabilization' operations to the ECB. The dress rehearsal held in Ireland in 2010, when Trichet openly threatened the government that it would cut funding of the banking system, forcing Ireland to exit eurozone in case it would not accept the "offer" loans from the EU, IMF and the cruel austerity measures imposed. The total amount that the Irish tax payers called to pay for this agreement was EUR 64 billion, or about 14,000 euros per Irish citizen.

This silent "coup" was successfully repeated in Cyprus when Berlin decided to get over with regional economic havens and gather control of black money into more controlled regions in Europe. And of course the same threats from the ECB were repeated several times in Greece, every time that the terms of the new loan agreements had to be set.

The ECB mechanism, in close cooperation with the central bankers of the eurozone members, was now completely out of control, interfering in the internal politics of sovereign states. The next step, namely the overthrow of an elected prime minister, it was just a matter of time to occur and was first tested in Italy.

In the summer of 2011, through a simple letter-ultimatum to Silvio Berlusconi, Trichet and Draghi called for implementation of harsh austerity measures in order for the ECB to buy bonds of the Italian state and save the country from imminent bankruptcy. Serving specific sections of the bourgeoisie in Italy, which were suffocating under the monetary policy of Berlin, Berlusconi spoke openly about the possibility of exit of Italy from the eurozone and several bankers within and outside Italy were requesting his "head on a plate".

As the Financial Times revealed last year, the summer of 2011, Italian President Giorgio Napolitano called the technocrat, former employee of Goldman Sachs, Mario Monti, in his office under absolute secrecy and asked him whether he would be ready to replace the elected prime minister. According to the Financial Times, the message given to Monti, was that he would be called to govern, as soon as the spread of the Italian bonds, which at that time ranged at 200 units, exceeded 300. The soaring spread and the precipitation of Italian bonds was done through a series of skilful movements by the ECB president Mario Draghi (coincidentally or not, another former executive of Goldman Sachs).

The ECB was sending a clear message that those governments who do not follow the orders were risking to be thrown in the dustbin of history, just in a few weeks.

The work of ECB could not, of course, mark such a success without the active support of the central bankers of the EU member states, which in most cases act as agents of the decisions taken in the central headquarters in Frankfurt. This, of course, does not have to do with some personal treason, but with a reflection of the prevailing balance between the economic elites of the eurozone countries with the powerful economic centers of Europe. The more dependent and parasitic is the bourgeoisie in a eurozone country, the more the man who puts as central banker will express his allegiance to the ECB. His "independence" actually ensures that he is unaccountable to any democratically elected institution, and thus attached to the strongest (and most lucrative) piece of the economic elite each time.

There were of course a few times when the government of a country which for various reasons decided to deviate from the mandate of the ECB, preoccupied with the local central banker. The right-wing government of Hungary gave a battle for months to force the central bank governor András Simor to leave his position, through which functioned essentially as a representative of the country's creditors. The EU and the ECB used their entire arsenal to prevent the removal of Seymour, going so far as to threaten Hungary even to suspend country's right for voting in all institutions. At that time they remembered government interference in the freedom of press, a case which until then, no one in the corridors of Brussels bothered to investigate.

Ιn order to force the central banker to resign, the Hungarian Government cut his salary by 75% and put its own people in many posts of the central bank. In vain. The central banker left only when his term ended and only after the "independence" of the central bank gave him the opportunity to fight the interests of his own country in one of the most critical posts of the Hungarian economy.

The government of Cyprus was also in open war with the central banker. With the outbreak of the crisis in 2012, the coldness of relations between President Christofias and the central banker A. Orphanides evolved into an open war as the former realized suddenly that he does not control the country's banking system during one of the most crucial moments of the modern Cypriot history. Once again, Frankfurt of course stood openly on the side of its own man, who exerted pressure to impose new austerity measures. Christofias was forced even to refer him to the general prosecutor (accused for the manipulation of official data) to achieve his removal, when it was already too late.

The question naturally arise: After all this, why did the SYRIZA government in Greece, permitted Yannis Stournaras to continue be in charge of the Greek economy?

Translated from the original source:


Related:


The new big trick of neoliberal bankdebtocracy

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Pro-Trump capitalists fire the first serious warning shot in Capitol

globinfo freexchange In June, 2020, we wrote that, the whole picture indicates that all these far-right militia groups together with a significant part the US police force are forming a loony army of Trump defenders, driven by racism, ultra-conservative ideas and far-right extreme conspiracy theories. These fanatics have become so loyal to their leader - who happens to be the President of the United States - that they will do whatever it takes to see him in charge for another four years. As Trump's popularity has taken a downturn, his "brigades" are ready to take action in case he loses November's election. Especially if he loses marginally. Previously, we explained that, what we see now in the United States with Trump, is a counter-attack by the part of the American capital against the globalist faction. The faction that is primarily consisted by the liberal plutocracy . Therefore, as the capitalist class splits, the capitalists around Trump are now taking with the

The DNC mafia is about to complete the process of assimilation of the progressives, exactly as predicted

globinfo freexchange   Since already July 2018, we identified an immediate mobilization by the corporate media in the US to force the progressive wing of the Democratic party comply with the DNC neoliberal norm. In the specific example , we analyzed how the corporate pundit forced the new star of the progressive wing, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, to literally declare loyalty to the DNC corporate "chief-baroness" Nancy Pelosi. After that, we saw an unexplained and bizarre contribution of both Bernie Sanders and Ocasio-Cortez to the establishment pro-McCain 'litanies'. In this totally unnecessary self-recruitment for the McCain's legacy whitewash operation, Cortez retreated unconditionally and the establishment marked a second victory against her. As we had mentioned , the corporate media will focus mainly on pushing progressives to be 'swallowed' by the current DNC establishment in order to destroy the political revolution of Bernie Sanders. Yet, it is expect

George Monbiot got it half-right: There is a capitalist civil war, but not exactly the kind of war he describes

by system failure  Since at least July 2019, we were supporting the idea that Brexit is primarily the result of a capitalist civil war. Very few people (mostly in social media), were eager to accept this theory, while several were even mocking it as some kind of crazy conspiracy theory.    What puzzled us most, was the fact that even people from the global real Left were completely ignoring the capitalist-civil-war factor in Brexit equation during public debates. Many of them were seeing Brexit mainly as an angry response by the UK working class against the political and financial elites. We thought it would take forever to find someone from the Left to support the capitalist-civil-war theory.   Finally, at last, it was George Monbiot who spoke clearly about a capitalist civil war. And not only that. He correctly supported (as you can hear in the beginning of his analysis) that " The only way really to understand Brexit is as the outcome of a civil war within capitalism. " 

Venezuelan Foreign Minister on why Juan Guaidó wasn't arrested & the Left's revival in Latin America

The Grayzone   As Venezuela elects and swears in a new National Assembly Red Lines host Anya Parampil sits down with the country's Foreign Minister, Jorge Arreaza, in their latest conversation since the US launched its coup attempt against his government in January of 2019. They discuss the impact of US regime change policy on Venezuela's domestic political situation, why Juan Guaidó has not been arrested, hope for diplomacy with the incoming Biden Administration, the left's resurgence in Latin America, and more. 

The real reason corporate America fights Chinese high-tech giant Huawei so hard

globinfo freexchange   The short answer that comes immediately in mind is: competition.    Indeed, Huawei had been found frequently at the epicenter of Trump's "holly" trade war against China. Someone should expect this since Silicon Valley oligarchs see the Chinese high-tech giant rapidly penetrate into the global market, claiming bigger and bigger portion of the market pie.   As we reported previously, the US imperialist machine openly called Western allies (and particularly the UK), to sabotage China's economic and technological penetration in its Western sphere of influence, through a Foreign Policy article. According to the article, the UK appears to be the most suitable, among the US allies, to lead the race against China's 5G infrastructure deals with Western countries. In essence, it called the UK to play a leading role in sabotaging China's and Huawei's deals with the UK itself and other Western countries.   Also, according to MintPress , &

Assange wins - The cost: the crushing of Press Freedom

by Jonathan Cook   Part 2 - A moment of celebration   We have contributed collectively in our various small ways to win back for Assange some degree of freedom, and hopefully a reprieve from what could be a death sentence as his health continues to deteriorate in an overcrowded Belmarsh high-security prison in London that has become a breeding ground for Covid-19. For this we should allow ourselves a moment of celebration. But Assange is not out of the woods yet. The US has said it will appeal the decision. And it is not yet clear whether Assange will remain jailed in the UK – possibly in Belmarsh – while many months of further legal argument about his future take place. The US and British establishments do not care where Assange is imprisoned – be it Sweden, the UK or the US. What has been most important to them is that he continues to be locked out of sight in a cell somewhere, where his physical and mental fortitude can be destroyed and where he is effectively silenced, encouraging

Assange verdict: Statements from WikiLeaks, Assange's partner, Reporters Without Borders & more

acTVism Munich   These statements were recorded by the "Don't Extradite Assange" campaign. acTVism Munich has republished it today because of the lack of coverage of these statements in the local media landscape, as well as to foster understanding of the Julian Assange case.  

Spooky Western journalists regurgitate CIA and collaborate with spy agencies

The Grayzone  Max Blumenthal, reporting from Venezuela, discusses with Aaron Maté and Ben Norton how Western corporate media outlets are full of stenographers for spy agencies, how the CIA and MI6 drive reporting on Russia, how the US and UK governments fund regime-change website Bellingcat and its deceptive articles on Syria and the OPCW, and how the British military censors journalism.

Julian Casablancas Interviews Chris Hedges | S.O.S. Earth is a Mess

Rolling Stone   Julian Casablancas sits down with his “ personal hero and greatest intellectual (along with elder chieftain Noam Chomsky), ” journalist and professor Chris Hedges, on the latest episode of his Rolling Stone interview series, S.O.S. — Earth Is a Mess. 

UK judge justifies CIA spying on Assange citing debunked CNN report based on… CIA spying

UK judge Vanessa Baraitser justified CIA spying on Julian Assange by citing a falsehood-filled CNN report. Her judgment highlighted corporate media’s enthusiastic role in a state-sponsored assault on press freedom.   by Ben Norton   Part 2 - UK judge casts doubt on US spying on Assange while simultaneously justifying it   The Grayzone has published several investigations into the US government spying operation that targeted Julian Assange when he was trapped in the Ecuadorian embassy. The Spanish company hired by Ecuador to provide security, UC Global, was secretly working with the CIA, providing the US spy agency with 24/7 video and audio surveillance that covered almost every inch of the diplomatic building, including even the women’s bathroom. Max Blumenthal demonstrated that the CIA presided over this illegal spying ring with the help of a company owned by billionaire Republican mega-donor Sheldon Adelson, a close ally of President Donald Trump and former CIA Director and Secretar