Monday, October 24, 2011
Marshall Auerback and Rob Parenteau do a great job demolishing the myth that the Greeks are in economic trouble because they are a bunch of lazy, profligate bums. With neoliberal capitalism in a state of severe crisis, we are increasingly treated with the silly stereotypes that seem to pass for economic analysis in much of the mainstream media and in elite political discourse.
People in the developing world would find none of this surprising, as they have long been characterized as lazy, corrupt, uncooperative, prone to authoritarianism, overly emotional, etc., and these stereotypes have been used to justify brutal neoliberal "reforms" in countries across the globe.
Now, with the Eurozone in trouble, the Greeks, Italians, Spaniards and others are being blamed for crashing the system through their bad "Mediterranean" habits. The result is that neoliberal capitalism and its wealthy supporters are left off the hook while ordinary people must suffer brutal austerity. This is not a just system.