Towards Frankfurt – “Europe in line for catastrophe”

21-22 April,
at the ex Cinema Palazzo/sala Vittorio Arrigoni
(P. dei Sanniti, San Lorenzo – Rome)
Centro studi per l’Alternativa comune
(with Ass. Lavoro e Libertà)
Europe in line for catastrophe
With the arrival of Monti on the scene, approval of the Fiscal Compact and the second tranche of aid for Greece the storm sweeping Europe since the spring of 2010 and the most indebted countries, the so-called PIIGS (Portugal, Italy, Ireland, Greece and Spain) appeared to have abated. Nothing could be farther from the truth. The danger focused on insolvency for Greece, still deferring the certainty of default, shifted to Portugal and Spain and persistent warnings are continuing to keep Italy on guard as well. The reason is simple: austerity policy enforced by the Bundesbank and the ECB which can do nothing other than lead to strong recession crises. Was it possible to avert a second great crash, following the one of 1929, from exploding beginning in August 2007 by applying procycle deflationary fiscal policies? Evidently not, and the data prove this in unequivocal terms. The Fiscal Compact, in the absence of expansionary monetary policies and the construction of a new EU welfare community, has done nothing other than expand the sovereign debt crisis to such countries as France and Germany, which appeared rock solid. That the euro is still at risk is underscored by such authoritative figures as George Soros who, for years, has been betting on the demise of the euro along with other American hedge fund managers. Is this a self-fulfilling prophesy? Probably. But the point is that Europe is not doing anything to distance the disaster. In addition to short-sighted economic policy comes the crisis of democracy. There are no democratic European institutions, only the inter-governmental Europe totally dominated by the currency Europe, the Bundesbank and the ECB. In spite of the 2000 Charter of Nice, there is no Europe of fundamental rights and welfare and while the Europe of citizens was set forth in some way in the Treaty of Lisbon, Citizens’ Initiatives allowing citizens from across the EU Member States to submit proposals directly to the European Commission still carry no weight in the management of the economic crisis. And while austerity has been the guideline chosen for the budgets of the European states, lack of job security has taken over more-or-less everywhere. Since the painful Red-Green Hartz reforms in Germany and the labor market reforms laid out by Rajoy and Monti, the right to work has been shattered in the name of the business interests which are woven into and distinguish the social policies of all the European governments. Fewer rights, greater job insecurity and, above all, lower wages. The attack on real earnings, along with deferred welfare spending, is a process which is bringing an entire generation to its knees, determining sudden destitution. The European social model, a model based on rights and welfare, inclusion and citizenship, is being thrown radically into doubt by neo-liberal recipes, recipes which use the gasoline deployed at the end of the 1920s to put out flames already high. Building a European movement capable of opposing all this heads the agenda of the day for those who are unwilling to succumb to the axe of neo-liberal policy. Redefining the blueprints of critical thinking in a way to face this challenge, on the terrain of analyses as well, is the purpose of the seminar set up by the Centro studi per l’Alternativa comune (Study Center for a Common Alternative) in cooperation with the Associazione Lavoro e Libertá (Labor and Liberty Association). All this with an view to mobilization for May 17 to 19 in Frankfurt where a wide range of movements of forces, German labor and political representatives, are promoting a highly visible protest against the austerity policies enacted by the ECB.
21.04 h 10
Introduction:
Francesco Raparelli
21.04 h 10:15
1. The Euro Under Attack
Introduction:
Luca Casarini
Lectures:
Christian Marazzi
Klaus Busch
Riccardo Bellofiore
21.04 h 14:30
2. Work Without Rights and Basic Income 
Introduction:
Gianni Rinaldini
Lectures:
Francesco Garibaldo
Antonio Lettieri
Papi Bronzini
22.04 h 10
3. Democracy, Fundamental Rights and the European Social Model
Introduction:
Roberto Musacchio
Lectures:
Richard Hyman
Anna Simone
Federica Giardini
22.04 h 12:30
To conclude: from Frankfurt to “ICE” on Basic Income
Intervention: Shendi Veli (Anomalia Sapienza/UniCommon);
Lorenzo Marsili (European Alternatives)
Source: email at squares mailing list.
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