The Eurozone = The New German Empire
And they are still nasty even if they don't slaughter people:
The flag of Europe still has twelve stars on it, and organizations with names like Eurogroup and European Commission and European Council still persist. But despite the unfortunate historical overtones, in order to be accurate we need to call the governing body in Europe the German Empire, after the events of this weekend. And the thing about empires is that they end sooner or later, because human beings don’t much like to be controlled by an overlord they never elected or endorsed.
The end of the German Empire will not take place today. Greece folded, giving up their sovereignty and agreeing to all the creditors’ demands, even to sell off national assets, without achieving anything more than a vague promise of debt relief in return. They decided to accept the devil they knew – crushing austerity, a worse package than what was on the table just weeks ago – rather than the devil they didn’t – the Grexit.
But that’s only the end of the story if you think Greece will meet the punitive objectives laid out in the surrender document, which look like the terms you impose on a country that lost a war. And even if they did manage to meet those terms, you would have to believe that austerity would generate economic growth to enable Greece to pay its debts back at some future stage. In this sense, it was a delay of the final outcome.
Far more important than the details of the Greek occupation – you can read the gory details here – is the manner in which it was employed. The German consuls were as vindictive as possible, slowly and deliberately grinding down the Greek economy, carpet-bombing the political opposition, and openly threatening expulsion from the European monetary union as punishment. The European Central Bank, Germany’s weapon of choice, supported the most crass form of economic bullying to stifle dissent that I’ve ever seen. The primary responsibility of a central bank is to manage the money supply in the countries it is associated with. The ECB did that by cutting off the money supply to Greece, no different than denying food to refugees. In fact, it’s very precisely the same, given the shortages of basic needs resulting from Greek importers having no way to ensure payment for goods.