Europe and its sovereignty
It’s late to talk about European decisions not being taken in Europe. The battle for the Euro, and for European unity is being fought today in the stock exchange bureaus and within the ever powerful financiers. We know that. More than ever sovereign decisions are taken not within the power chambers of each state -or union of states- but in finance circles, funds and similar multinational corporate interests.
It does not surprise learning then that Standard & Poor’s downgrading of a bunch of European nations’ credit rating has upset many among the economic knowledgeable and is being considered a big political decision. The fact is that SP’s decision may have been taken with accuracy -or may not, at this point this is irrelevant. The problem is that SP’s and Moody reflect the obvious decadence (to say the least) or North American capitalism being stretched now up to and over its possible limits. Shareholders may not be even aware of this, but the fact is SP and Moody belong to the same investors (again, finance funds) who with their left hand bet against the euro and its nations, and with the right hand score the euro-zone’s credit. Conflict of interest?
As many are beginning to see, a solution to Europe’s stagnation and possible crackdown (I dread such possibility, given the amount of energy I spent on the European dream) may well lay in the elimination of credit-rating agencies off the European coasts. Even Obama has derided them of late. And in the nationalization of finance banks. Yes, the most anti-capitalist measure there is on earth. But, see, finance banks do not really produce anything. They just bet on other people’s production and they do so with other people’s money. Sometimes, the models used turn bad and they provoke havoc, as it happened in 2008 in the US. Now, after being replenished with money -people’s money- from the governments of many nations, they turn back their menace: Hey guys! You are too indebted. Return us the money we lent! Now. Then, their allies SP’s or Moody lower the rating of indebted countries so that financing that debt is more and more costly, and it is more and more difficult to repay it. At that point the unlucky state (Ireland, Portugal, Greece, like Argentina before them) has to withstand the “measures” such corporate agencies demand of it, at all costs, social, political, economical. And at that point, the transfer of power has already taken place. It’s not Athens, or Dublin who govern in their countries. It’s Brussels or Washington. But those who end up governing are not the official powers in Brussels (the EU), or Washington (the USA): instead, and increasingly, they are the world finance funds, banks and trusts, sometimes on behalf of certain big corporations, like the construction, the military or the media businesses.
Which brings us to my second example of lost sovereignty. England’s “pirate” student, who is accused of linking to overseas websites streaming copyrighted movies with no authorization, has lost his case. The Guardian (and other media) report that a judge ruled that the
23-year-old student can be extradited to the United States for running a website posting links to pirated TV shows and films, despite significant doubts over whether such sites break any UK laws.
Said judge stated unbelievably that
There are said to be direct consequences of criminal activity by Richard O’Dwyer in the USA, albeit by him never leaving the north of England,” [judge] Purdy said. “Such a state of affairs does not demand a trial here if the competent UK authorities decline to act, and does, in my judgment, permit one in the USA.”
OMG. If this is not a case of renounced sovereignty, I don’t know what is. The UK government should take position here, and Europe’s as well. When there’s a void in power somewhere, someone will fill that void.
I conclude this with a thought on the diseased and (for now) deceased SOPA. The big media outlets have already cried out against Obama and his brave and just position against supporting such law. Watch for the next incarnation of SOPA, another indication of lost sovereignty -in this case to big media. None other than Rupert Murdoch wrote on Twitter:
So Obama has thrown in his lot withSilicon Valley paymasters who threaten all software creators with piracy, plain thievery. –
Rest in peace, Rupert, as well as the good old order.
- Austrian downgrade reflects Europe’s complex web of problems (cnn.com)
- Sarkozy shrugs off French downgrade (cbc.ca)
- For Now, the Eurozone and the Markets Pooh-pooh the Downgrades. But the Long-Term Looms (globalspin.blogs.time.com)
- S&P downgrades European bailout fund (guardian.co.uk)