Yesterday I published an article on Syriza’s election victory and the aftermath so far. I didn’t take the trouble to look on YouTube for things people might be saying about this, so today I thought I’d herd several different Channels onto here for the viewer’s delectation. Below we have both authoritarian and libertarian responses to the sovereign debt crises in Europe, Greek austerity, and Syriza’s big win in Sunday’s general election. Can I just say, for what it’s worth, that a quick study of Greek history offers an immediate solution to the country’s economic woes; radical, locally directed decentralisation to the Polis. The most successful period in Greek history was one of disunited city-states, ditto Italy millenia later after the end of the Holy Roman and Byzantine yokes. In fact, the same advice applies to Italy…

 

1. vlogbrothers

A brief and rather airy intro into when debt becomes less a lifeline and more a noose.

 

2. Bloomberg

The schizophrenic split between unified monetary policy and national level fiscal policy led to all countries enjoying a unified credit rating despite having completely different tax and spending regimes. As a result Greece joined Italy and Portugal in spending like crazy, but even more so. So even before the sovereign debt crisis Greece was deeply in debt. Greece also has a massive problem with corruption in its tax system, with the result that actual tax receipts were much lower than their official rates would suggest. Indeed Greek politicians were complicit in the practice. This video shows you must have fiscal and monetary policy at the same level. The EU must do both or neither. National governments must do both or neither.

 

3. The Economist

The Economist’s dataphilia can be annoying sometimes, but the context here, comparing Greece to Italy and the fact that the economy has improved markedly over the last year, is very interesting. The problem is that ‘improving’ doesn’t mean much to hungry, angry people. The real improvements from the PASOK/New Democracy consensus could never be realised for several more years anyway, and people are feeling desperate now. That high time preference has translated into a vote for Syriza. As to that desperation, well, Paul Mason has you covered below;

 

4. Channel 4 News

This report, before the election, offers a far-left perspective on Greek peoples’ troubles and on their sympathy with Syriza’s anti-austerity message. It’s a cunningly put together report and goes straight for all those poor helpless people – a former TV station employee driving taxis, a trained teacher doing odd jobs – as though it’s just the mean capitalists spoiling everybody’s fun. Hopefully the Bloomberg video above alredy made it obvious that the problem faced by Greek people is one of their government’s making over the years since joining the Euro.

 

5. Al Jazeera English

By definition, leaving the Euro equals default on all debts. The position of this editorial is that even Syriza are unlikely to leave the Euro, but of course they have already started playing hard ball with negotiators from the European Central Bank, European Commission, and International Monetary Fund. The talking head in the video advises continued privatisations. That, of course, has stopped. Syriza halted the privatisation of the Piraeus Port Authority earlier this week.

 

6. Stefan Molyneux

Here is an exposition of what Syriza most likely represent for Greeks in the long run. Stef points out various important little facts about the worldviews held by many in Syriza including its leader Alexis Tsipras.