Swiss solution for Greece: two currencies

One of the architects of the Euro, Bernard Lietaer thinks hard liners in bailout negotiations are only twisting the knife in the wound.

Yesterday, Greece agreed to occupation by the Fourth Reich. They have become a vassal state of the EU, occupiers will be in every Greek ministry.

They have not agreed lightly, they did so with a  gun to the head of the Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras, agree to our terms, even worse austerity than we have already subjected you to, or we destroy Greece.

It was as Caroline Lucas described, a dark day for democracy. For the moment the Forces of Darkness have won.

These are dark days for anyone who believes in democracy. Against the will of the Greek people, and in spite of the plain economic facts, EU ministers and the IMF are inflicting ever more pain on a country that’s already been utterly devastated by austerity.

The latest announcements from Eurozone chiefs make for grim reading. A deal has been reached – but it sees the Greek Prime Minister sent back to his country with his own Government’s sovereignty stripped away. The measures which he’ll present to his Parliament – further privatisation, the curtailing of workers’ rights and the liberalisation of the economy- make it plain just how little power was wielded by Tsipras in these negotiations. He went to Brussels hoping to save his country from austerity, and he lost.

It’s easy to pour scorn on the Greek prime minister but, let’s just be clear: the oldest democracy in the world has been subjected to a coup. The Greek Parliament is being asked to debate this package in just a couple of days. The emergency legislation, which will entirely restructure the way the economy of the country is run, can’t possibly be properly scrutinised in the time available yet, once again, elected Greek politicians are having a gun held to their head by the forces of darkness – the IMF, the Eurozone and the ECB. It’s particularly depressing to see EU member states, all of whom having signed up to a charter which promises a Union “based on the principles of democracy and the rule of law”, denying Greek people the right to have a proper say in how their country is run.

Surrender does in theory, give as a Greek Minister has said, leeway to fight another day.

Greece has been told to push Emergency Legislation through the Greek Parliament by Wednesday.  This gives no time for proper scrutiny.

The Dark Forces may have won a battle, but we must not let them win the war.

They have imposed what will be seen as a modern-day Treaty of Versailles on Greece. Punishment for daring to defy the EU, a warning to other countries not to defy the Fourth Reich. We all know where the Treaty of Versailles led, the rise of Adolf Hitler and the Second World War.

The Greek Parliament may vote no.

The debt has not been written off.

ECB has still kept the tap turned off, there is no money flow to the Greek banks, the bank doors will remain closed.

The best that can be seen, a breathing space.

Greece must now do, as Bernard Lietaer has recommended, create a second parallel currency.

This was considered, but was rejected, as no time, and Greece lacks the expertise to implement.

Greece must put out a call, please experts come to Greece and help us.

There is a precedence for this.

When banks shut in Ireland during a bank strike, the economy functioned, people created their own money by writing cheques. The system worked on trust.

During the Great Depression, many what were known as scrips were created. Bernard Lietaer mentions the Wir which is still functioning in Switzerland. A coal mine owner, created one backed by coal, to pay his workers. It was accepted by local businesses and became a local currency, the mine was opened, economic activity created. Such was the success of scrips that they were eventually outlawed by Central Banks as they were losing control of the currency.

If we assume every family has a smart phone, could create a parallel digital currency, non-convertible, into which the Greek Central Bank pays each account holder at least a thousand euro-equivalent. This is far more efficient at creating economic growth than Quantitative Easing. But again have infrastructure and logistics problem and lack of expertise which is why the Greek government decided against a parallel currency.

Iceland let the banks go bust, tossed a few bankers and corrupt politicians in prison, the citizens overthrew the parliament and created a new constitution, and rejected austerity. They have not looked back. And they are not in the euro or under occupation by the Fourth Reich.

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