The first blog of 2019 is a review of a timely and excellent book published by Polity Books and titled,the left case against the EU. Written by Costas Lapavitsas a Syriza member of parliament at the time of the 2015 Syriza
government sell out to the EU. He is now professor of economics at SOAS London. In the book the author calls on the European left to drop its support for the European Union and instead campaign for their countries to leave the EU.
He states that the Single European Act of 1986 and the Maastricht Treaty of 1992 led the way to the economic and political integration thus leading to EU central control over countries economies. He shows how the neo liberal economist Friedrich Hayek welcomed this as it would move the impediment to free movement of goods,labour and capital.
Costas also shows how the introduction of the Euro currency was another factor to individual EU countries losing their economic independence. Also turning the EU into a bastion of neo liberalism and privatization. The European Central Bank aims for 2% rate of inflation in the Eurozone and countries can only have a 3% public deficit.
The author shows how Germany is increasingly the dominant force in the EU. The reason for this is that the reunification of Germany led to a vast reserve of cheap labour in the old GDR. Also German firms have moved much of their enterprises to Poland and the Czech Republic another reserve of cheap labour. This means that wages have now stagnated in the old West Germany which now has rising inequality.
Costas also shows how the 2008 financial crisis was the final impetus to turning the EU into a hard neo liberal bastion. The European Stability Mechanism means that loans can only be made to EU countries on strict conditions. Privatization, austerity thus leading to mass unemployment.
He also touches on the Greek Syriza debacle of 2015. He correctly states that the country should have left the Euro and reintroduced the Drachma.
Costas also shows that unfortunately it is the Right wing Populist Nationalists who are leading the resistance to the EU. For instance Le Pen France and Salvini Italy. Tragically most of the European left still has a positive view of the EU.
In conclusion he correctly praises Brexit. He calls on the left in the EU countries to drop their support for the EU and also campaign for their countries to leave the EU. Also to reinstate their old national currencies.
This is an excellent book which gives a correct analysis of the fascist EU. I went to the book launch and it was very encouraging that their was about six hundred people present including many young anti EU left wing people. Buy this book.
Best wishes for the future.