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Tsipras and Varoufakis failed due to arrogance

25 February 2015 / 20:02:29  GRReporter
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French electronic edition, which is headed by former director of the newspaper Le Monde Jean-Marie Colombani, published the most critical article to date about the Greek government.

The article is entitled "Greece’s tradition":

Insults to the Germans

Wolfgang Schaeuble’s negative reply to the first Greek request for an agreement can be easily explained. The German Minister of Finance was insulted by his Greek counterpart, whom he no longer wants to see. So, Greece had to return to the contract signed by the previous government. That was it. And it is the agreement that Greece signed on Friday, 20 February, despite the communication tricks to swallow the bitter pill.

The hysteria of Germans towards SYRIZA is explained by the fact that they were abused, compared with the Nazis and constantly urged to pay for a country that constantly steals and still does not comply with European rules.

"I saw this anger rising in Germany but I had never imagined that it could go so far. In the EU, one should not abuse any of the partners. And the Greeks will pay dearly," journalist Eric Le Boucher wrote.

The second lesson came from the incredible lack of preparation on the part of SYRIZA. This populist party believed that it would govern the country in a direction different from that followed by previous governments. It believed that there was a solution through economic growth, despite the European agreements signed, despite the economic dependence of the country. It believed that since the Greek people voted for them, all other European nations would either rebel or accept the new programme of the remarkable government of Tsipras.

Naivety and amateurism

In fact, this is a case of absolute naiveté, complete ignorance of European rules, a terrible mistake regarding the balance of powers and, even worse, it involves a supposedly different opinion, namely that there was "another way", another policy, a better and less painful one, almost an easy one. What would it be? "It will be enough to abandon austerity", return to the past, increase salaries and pensions, re-appoint dismissed officials to begin a policy of growth "in bulk".

We have to admit something: the policy of austerity imposed on Greece was excessive, it led to a major recession and the country deviated from all targets. However, competitiveness has recovered, as in Spain and Ireland, which is what the Troika wants. But because the production base in Greece is very small, German-type austerity does not bear fruit, while the social price is high. Indeed, the balance does not help in terms of savings which many officials in the US and Europe have recognised. It was necessary to find a way to combine austerity and growth.

Starting from this finding, Alexis Tsipras believed that he had won the bet and that the partners would press Berlin to accept their programme for growth. But it all failed due to poor preparation and arrogance.

Greek Minister of Finance Yanis Varoufakis spent time pretending to be sly during meetings, in front of television cameras and on social media. He had no specific programme to be combined with the previous agreements signed by the country and to be accepted. He was jumping from one vague plan to another incredible plan, until everything collapsed.


Greece is now paying dearly for its talking and absolute inability.

But this is no coincidence.

The populists are using the services of unknown economists, calling them "alternative". Obviously, this is in their interest. But most of them are not competent and only think they are aware of things. Until yesterday, they were chewing over neo-Marxist nonsense. Today they are aware that one needs to know today's global economic reality as one cannot just launch vague economic proposals, such as bonds for economic growth. Nobody understands their meaning but they show them as something very important.

Yanis Varoufakis is one of those economists. One of these gurus, scoundrels, who go from one university to another, support successful blogs for alternative economists, as they have no other political proposal. The Internet is full of them, they have filled populist parties, where economists-realists have left room. These are parties which expected that all would be enchanted by their magic thoughts.

Yanis Varoufakis should have tricked (the original used the word "empapaouter'') Alexis Tsipras and the other leading members of SYRIZA, just as mathematicians, brokers, invent 'toxic' products to give them to their bosses - illusions, false solutions, ideas that seem serious, but are devoid of content.

One might say that Greece was humiliated by Germany. And that the rest of the countries appeared to be timid. And that in the great ideological struggle the Social Democrats wanted to punish the extreme left. And that the "unique thought" won once again due to the global elite that stood against democracy and the people. This is all wrong, totally wrong. Greece had not lost from the outset. It could have achieved flexibility in the rescue programme. Germany could once again have agreed with what it initially rejected. However, this plan failed due to arrogance and ignorance.

Gradual surrendering

The government of Alexis Tsipras proved totally unprepared for the harsh reality. It was forced to gradually surrender until 20 February. It first accepted that it should pay off the debt, then it agreed that it should talk with the hated Troika, and finally, it realised that it should forget its social programme, adopt the programme of the previous government and start reforms.

Tags: Alexis TsiprasSYRIZAYanis VaroufakisTroikaAgreementFailure
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