Monday, 18 January 2016

Η νέα τάξη του «πρεκαριάτου»

Η παγκόσμια χρηματοπιστωτική κρίση του 2007-9, η επακόλουθη κρίση χρέους της Ευρωζώνης κι η συνεχιζόμενη λιτότητα έχουν επιφέρει τεκτονικές αλλαγές στην κοινωνικοοικονομική διαστρωμάτωση των ευρωπαϊκών κοινωνιών κι έτι περαιτέρω της δικής μας. Η αυστηρή δημοσιονομική πειθαρχία και η επιδίωξη της ανταγωνιστικότητας και προσαρμογής σε ένα παγκοσμιοποιημένο περιβάλλον αλληλεξάρτησης έχουν επιφέρει την ελαστικοποίηση των σχέσεων εργασίας και την αποσάθρωση των δομών του ευρωπαϊκού κράτους πρόνοιας. Το κοινωνικό συμβόλαιο που έθεσε τα θεμέλια της μεταπολεμικής οικονομικής ανάπτυξης και κοινωνικής συνοχής στην Ευρώπη πνέει τα λοίσθια κι ακόμα δεν υπάρχει συναίνεση για το ποιο κοινωνικοοικονομικό μοντέλο θα το αντικαταστήσει.


Wednesday, 13 January 2016

Για την υπόθεση Ρίχτερ: ιστορία με τη «βούλα»

Πριν λίγες ημέρες ξεκίνησε στο Μονομελές Πλημμελειοδικείο Ρεθύμνου η ποινική δίκη κατά του Γερμανού ακαδημαϊκού, καθηγητή Ιστορίας, Χ. Ρίχτερ. Τον κ. Ρίχτερ δεν τον γνωρίζω. Για τις επίμαχες θέσεις του, για τις οποίες διώκεται ως κακόβουλος αρνητής των ναζιστικών εγκλημάτων πολέμου στην Κρήτη, αλλά και για την όλη υπόθεση, ευρύτερα, ενημερώθηκα από τον τύπο και αναρτήσεις σε blogs.


The 2015 GPPF Chania Forum




Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose




















Events during the summer of 2015 bore an air of déjà vu. The initial gap between Greece and its partners was significant. The frequency of meetings increased as time (and cash) ran out, with little to show in terms of progress. The discussions were held at an increasingly higher political level, but the core of the discussions remained of a “technical nature”. At its climax, the Greek Prime Minister held a referendum whose two questions were incomprehensible for citizens. Then, the Greek government operated a complete U-turn, signing third Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) containing harsh(er) conditions. 


Towards a New Social Contract in a Debt-Ridden Southern Economy? The City of Athens Perspective

While the question of whether cities can change the world feeds passionate debates and initiatives around the world, the challenge for Greece’s capital city is rather less ambitious. How can Athens cope with the social impact of the economic crisis in a sustainable way? Indeed, this is a crucial question when one bears in mind the severity of the crisis, on the one hand, and, on the other, the metropolitan size of Athens, which gathers approximately 660,000 registered residents. The fact is that Athens, Greece’s administrative and economic center, has symmetrically suffered from the socioeconomic decline. All these happen in a country where, admittedly, family solidarity can smoothen the crisis’ social impact in rural areas, but not so much in big urban centers, like Athens.


Monday, 14 December 2015

Crisis Politics in Europe: Vulnerability to Adjustment, Policy Responses and Political Conflict


The Euro crisis has turned into one of the most serious challenges that the European Union (EU) has had to face so far. At its root the crisis is a balance-of-payments crisis; caused by divergent economic developments among member states in the pre-crisis years and the deep financial integration that accompanied this process.


Who Controls the IMF?


The International Monetary Fund (IMF, or Fund) is governed by its member countries. Its daily business is conducted by a 24-member Executive Board, its directors representing countries, or groups of countries. Importantly, at the IMF, not all countries are the same – instead, so-called weighted voting governs the Fund. The “weight” of a country is determined by its economic importance, depending on variables like GDP, trade, and reserves of foreign currency. The resulting vote share of the United States, the single largest shareholder of the Fund, exceeds 17 percent. Japan and Germany follow, with around 6 percent each, then the United Kingdom and France with each around 5 percent of the voting weight. Most decisions at the Fund have to be taken with a majority of more than 50 percent (though formal votes are rarely taken), giving these few countries a substantial say in decision-making at the Fund.