Spain must defy Brussels, Varoufakis tells anti-austerity campaigners

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© Kostas Koutsaftikis / Shutterstock
An anti-austerity campaign in Greece, 2015.

DURING an appearance at an anti-austerity gathering in Madrid on February 21, Greece’s former finance minister Yanis Varoufakis told cheering protesters that their next leader must make a stand against EU-imposed austerity measures. 

Attending the “Plan B” event in former-slaughterhouse-turned-cultural centre, Matadero Madrid, Varoufakis rubbed shoulders with activists, celebrities and Spain’s leftist politicians as part of a Europe-wide movement against what are now viewed by many as “false solutions”. 

Using Greece as an example, the far-left politician spoke out against the Troika committee (the European Commission, European Central Bank and International Monetary fund), which had, claimed Varoufakis “tried to convince the Greek people that the Spanish austerity programme was a success story”. 

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In exchange for European funding, Greece had to agree to enforce a strict fiscal austerity programme in 2010. 

The eleventh austerity package was approved in August 2015 and included an increase in various taxes and reforms for the country’s retirement system. 

However, Varoufakis claims that this was a tipping point that drove the Greek electorate into the arms of the radical left-wing party Syriza, which took over the reigns of government in January 2015. 

Continuing to describe Spain’s current political stalemate as “a crucial juncture” he urged the Spanish to follow Greece’s suit and not buy into the “lie” that austerity will provide an adequate solution to economic crisis. 

The Plan B manifesto supports alternate proposals including “a fair tax policy, the closure of tax havens, complementary exchange systems, re-municipalisation of public services and the equal distribution of jobs”. 

3 COMMENTS

  1. Yanis Varoufakis spoke the truth and the reality of all the moves or EU which is nothing else but one austerity after the other. the new Spanish government should negotiate with EU a new program ; id not the citizens of Spain will end up like the citizens of Greece.

  2. Spanish citizens should listen to Yanis Varoufakis advice and defy EU if they want to survive and don’t end up like Greece whose prime minister had to sign a new memorandum by using the Grexit as a threat!!!

  3. If Greece had exited from using the Euro currency a few years ago I think ti would have helped them a lot, the problem is not their EU debt would soar if they left it now… Brussels knew that! I think Spain should leave it and return to the peseta as soon as it can, Spain could devalue and it would help the Spanish people.

    Spain has now reached the point where it pays in, I remember before Spain joined the EU I tried to tell people here that I know it all looks good joining but beware that eventually the day will come where you have to pay back and when that happens it will be forever!

    Spain desperately needs to create employment, the only way I see to do that is to reduce nomina payments and employment contracts, Spains system is built around the employed person and not creating employment, that needs to change and the employed people won’t like that… no disrespect to anyone but the employee gets it too good in Spain, the system cannot be sustained… and create employment… and so go forward. I think if Spain and its politicians ‘who every they will be’ are not careful Spain will start falling into a much bigger hole!

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