Thread: Again on Greece
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Old May 22 2013, 01:55 PM   #8
stj
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Re: Again on Greece

It was Rogoff and Reinhart's article that was influential. The genuinely powerful apparently don't read whole books, this isn't the eighteenth century. Maybe after the Rogoffs and Reinharts have earned their thirty pieces of silver, they write books to pretend they didn't really mean it?

The KKE argued for devaluation, which is why the politics of the Greek crisis was so more intense. The grand fusion of the fake left in SYRIZA wouldn't have mattered to anyone if a significant party hadn't for once raised the real possibility of an independent policy. The KKE wasn't the biggest party but it was a genuine party. And it is one that by far poses the greatest chance of a genuine break with the imperialists. Without a party, the greatest popular uprising will pass like a storm. As in Iceland, the ruling class simply reorganizes and returns, because the failure to advance allows them to. There is no threat from the indignados in Spain and the Communist Refoundation in Italy is de facto split.

I have found the more hatred heaped on dead Communists, the more hatred for living workers. Stalin's crimes and disasters were quite horrifying enough, but it is no accident that they have been magnified to pretend that Stalin is worse than Hitler. Nor is it an accident that his name is invoked as part of a continued assault on living workers. The world is a whole economy. The USSR was in essence a strike by the workers. The destruction of the USSR was breaking the strike, breaking the union. It had an inevitable effect in breaking worker resistance. That is why so many hailed its fall.

I think Stalin's role in communism (broadly considered as a worldwide social movement) is far more analogous to Cromwell or the Directory. They are not pretended to be incarnations of the democratic ethos..

The name of Hitler may be unpopular, but let's face it: German state security forces find that working with Hitler's political descendants is acceptable. Even to the point of murder. Mussolini's descendants of course have long been acceptable in the halls of power. Spanish politics cannot comfortably criticize Franco, not even verbally. Liberalism, genuine or not, is on a continuum with fascism, as against socialism/communism, whether you like it or not. The relations within that continuum may of course be as friendly as those between Stalin and Trotsky, of course.

The other voices in the IMF have no influence when it comes to policy. The memorandum shows the IMF is only interested in targeting the worst afflicted in Greece so that it can moderate political resistance. Even then the IMF clearly insists that general state welfare benefits are to be eschewed. Their stance is like imposing a means test on Social Security.

A parenthetical suggestion is a rant? No. Stalin's contemptible memorandum with Churchill was never negotiated in any meaningful terms. The very existence of a Greek armed resistance was interpreted as Stalin's aggression. The person who did the most on the ground to weaken the resistance was indeed Tito, who was indeed pursuing an accommodation with the imperialists (democracies.)
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