Since 2010, the eurozone crisis has roiled the continent, creating political discord and generating a long period of economic stagnation. The cyclical recovery enjoyed in 2017 is no cause for complacency. It should act as an impetus to undertake long-overdue reforms.
At present, there is no future for those incapable of investing. There is no stimulus for innovation in countries that have been converted to the hegemony of finance at the expense of productive investment. Europe must confront the challenges of the twenty-first century by recovering the community spirit behind the Union’s origins.
The Reform of Europe demonstrates the need for a long-term vision with two goals: the reconstruction of a social contract based on entrepreneurial partnership and investment in the transition to ecological sustainability. This political vision will restore to citizens of the member states a sense of belonging to a wider community. To this end, argues Michel Aglietta, one of today’s most important heterodox economists, we must strengthen European institutions at the financial and fiscal levels. This means making the euro a full currency, endowed with democratic legitimacy.
“Believe it or not, money is absent from the economic theories that underpin every policy ever enacted on our behalf! Michel Aglietta’s new book explains splendidly this remarkable absence and, in the process, highlights beautifully the clash between finance and democracy, with special emphasis on how the US dollar’s domination reflects, on the one hand, America’s geopolitical power and, on the other, the inherent incongruities of the financial sector.”