Great Leap Forward


With Syriza in the driver’s seat, Greece now has some hope for the end to austerity imposed by Germany and the Troika.

Here’s a good short piece by C. J. Polychroniou, a research associate and policy fellow at the Levy Economics Institute. As he explains, what Syriza wants is no more—and no less—radical than what the USA did in the 1930s to deal with its Great Depression: “the bulk of Syriza’s economic program for addressing the catastrophic crisis in Greece, which has evolved into a humanitarian crisis, is inspired by President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s New Deal programs”.

The official press is reacting in horror! Oh the horror of bringing Democracy and Pinko policies into the Officially Neoliberal EMU regime!

C.J. continues: “Interestingly, the task for the implementation of the employment program has been assigned to a colleague of mine at the Levy Institute, Rania Antonopoulos, who has been appointed deputy minister of Labor and Social Solidarity under a Syriza-led government.”

Yes, Senior Scholar Rania Antonopoulos is director of the Gender Equality and the Economy program at the Levy Institute, specializing in macro-micro linkages of gender and economics, international competition, and globalization; job guarantee policies and their macroeconomic and employment impacts; social protection and poverty reduction; and the implications of paid and unpaid work on poverty indicators. She was one of the founders of “Economists for Full Employment” and has been a long-time supporter of the job guarantee.

And so, two Levy scholars have moved into government this month—Rania in Greece and Stephanie Kelton in Washington. What will the world come to?

7 Responses to “JOBS FOR GREEKS”

SteveL3January 28th, 2015 at 4:55 pm

This is great news. Need to increase the flow (hoping you have sufficient provisions).
Stephanie in Washington, Rania in Athens (with a formidable colleague in Yanis Varoufakis).
Now we need some help here in Italy. Might you have anyone of Italian extraction to suggest for the next govt (presumably by the end of the year, or early 2016) ?
Please keep up the good work.

Aegean1972January 30th, 2015 at 8:04 am

While austerity is certainly not the answer, putting deficits in order (while working towards growth) is the long term answer. The Euro-debt is unmanagable (and so is the US debt). Getting rid of it is one thing. But if you want to keep (the debt) from coming back, then you have to budget each and every member's spending. Thats what Germany and its allies are trying to do. We have reached a point that printing more money wont "cut it" anymore. The US is a prime example of that. With a debt of 16trillion and a spending-budget that they cant afford, its only a matter of time till things get ugly. You cant hide it under the rug anymore. Thats why the US is pressuring Germany to loosen up and spend. Because they dont want the euro-austerity to start affecting the US financial problem and putting the problem on the surface so everyone can see.

Aegean1972January 30th, 2015 at 8:04 am

Germany on the other hand, took care of its problems a couple of decades back and its not willing to sacrifice stability just because the US or the Euro south wants her too. Put in the equation a China with an 18 trillion surplus and buying whatever is available on the market (around the world) and you can see why the worlds economy is so unbalanced at the moment. The weak all of a sudden are strong and the "strong" are weak. Its a huge problem, its international and its going to get ugly for a while. Saving Greece would be wise, because it would be the start of defusing an international problem. For the time being, the pressure cooker around the world is building up steam..

L. Randall Wray L. Randall WrayJanuary 31st, 2015 at 1:18 am

Lots of nonsense here. We need a balanced analysis. Germany did not repay its debts from WWI (the reparations were too large–just like Greek debts now). And then Germany murdered tens of millions of people in WWII and has never fully repaid its debts from that war. The US rebuilt Germany–with generous aid. Some say Germany still owes Greece perhaps up to $100 billion from WWII. All of that is from long before the EMU–debts Germany has never repaid. The EMU was designed to punish and impoverish the periphery. And you know nothing about the situation of the USA. Pure nonsense on that. The US federal govt is sovereign. There is no danger in its deficits. Germany is the rich nation. Let it first repay its WWII debts. Then we can start talking about Greek debt repayments or forgiveness or–maybe best–leaving the EMU.