So, a government says that the people will have the say on its budget, and global markets plunge. Was there ever a clearer sign that the interests of the capitalist elite and the people are at odds, and the capitalists know it? It’s interesting that Papandreou has chosen to force a crisis and headed off a coup. Around the world, ordinary people want radical change. That won’t come from ‘in-paradigm’ solutions.
Papandreou has a choice. He could play the neoliberals’ game. put the austerity in place. Make his people suffer for the bankers’ mistakes. And get his party slaughtered in the next election for betraying its supporters.
But this guy is a Socialist. He’s actually President of the Socialist International as well as the Panhellenic Socialist Movement’s leader. Maybe he decided not to play the neoliberals’ game anymore.
Could a default really be worse for his people than decades of austerity? Who actually stands to lose most from a crisis? The people, who are increasingly aware that they are being exploited by the current system and hungry for change (witness: the Occupy Movement and the right reactionaries like the Tea Party, and the Arab Spring), or the elites who depend on the perpetuation of that system?
This won’t be a revolution with barricades in the streets. It could be a global revolution of Leftwing governments turning to their people’s wisdom, rather than continuing to be constrained by the neoliberal rule-book.