Greek Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis has the weight of history on his shoulders as he makes the rounds of European capitals this week. His task in not merely to renounce the ham-handed “austerity” dictated by the Troika. Apparently even the French are prepared to acknowledge that the hideous suffering that has been imposed on Greece’s less fortunate citizens must be alleviated. Yet the latter is only a symptom of what’s wrong and what stands in the way of a real solution.
The true evil started with the bailouts themselves and the resulting usurpation by the EU politicians and apparatchiks of both financial market price discovery and discipline and sovereign democratic prerogatives. Accordingly, the terms of Greece’s current servitude can’t be tweaked and “restructured” within the Brussels bailout framework.
Instead, Varoufakis must firmly brace his interlocutors on the true history and the condition precedent that stands before them. Namely, that the Greek state was effectively bankrupt even before the 2010 bailout, and that the massive amounts of debt piled upon it thereafter was essentially a fraudulent conveyance by the EU.