Social Collapse

Recently by Robert Wenzel: National Review Goes on a Crazed Attack of Ron Paul Monetary Economics

The bankster controlled elitist states around the world are collapsing. Greece is a preview. So what is happening in Greece? Anomic breakdown.

Under the headline: Struggling Greeks losing belief in the state, Paul Mason at the BBC reports:

During the autumn, Greek commentators began to speak of "anomic breakdown", where people begin to disobey laws and social norms individually.

There are all kinds of factions developing: hard-right, extreme left, anti-German, most appear unaware that central planning is itself the problem. Most just want their central planners in power. Here’s Mason again:

The polls tell one part of the story. The Pasok party, which tried and failed to implement the first austerity bill until replaced by a technocratic coalition in October, is now down to 11%. (Epikaria poll, 16 February 2012)

New Democracy, the centre-right party that expected to form the government – it has been a two- horse race since the restoration of democracy in the 1980s – is also in trouble. Its own vote – 27.5% – is not enough to form a government. And 20 MPs just got expelled for opposing the bailout.

The Christian Orthodox hard-right party, LAOS, has also split, after leaving the coalition government during the austerity vote last Sunday. I heard two perfectly ordinary guys, sitting next to me in a cafe, comment: "I don’t care if the splitters from LAOS were once fascists. They are right."

The far left is now polling a combined 43.5%. The extreme-right party Golden Dawn is on 2.5%. And there’s an air of mania….

The left, for its part, remains riven by splits. When the security squad of the communist trade union PAME clashed with anarchists on a demo last summer, the communists pinned the blame on the other big left party, Syriza.

Outflanking both of them, a tiny former "eurocommunist" party called the Democratic Left has gone from near zero to 16% in the polls.

Yiannis Bournous, the international spokesman for Syriza, believes that despite this, it may be possible for the left to attempt to form a government. "And run a state that’s part of Nato?" I ask. He makes clear that any left government would do the basic things – certainly not leave Nato.

Syriza and the DemLeft do not even want to leave the euro: Syriza’s proposal is for Greece to declare a selective moratorium on debt repayments and use the euro bailout money for a programme of social reform.

In the meantime, their growing popularity is not just down to the militant atmosphere on demonstrations: "We’ve built a solid record in local administrations," claims Mr Bournous "and all over the country groups of our supporters are organising things: food provision, bartering clubs, self-help groups. That’s how we’ve built ourselves.

"We are talking about a new bloc of forces that have their internal differences but which agree on the rejection of the new memorandum and this suffocating policy of super-austerity."

Does he seriously think they can form a government?

"This is our proposal. They must put aside their partial differences and after the election, yes, form a new bloc of power."

This week the German Finance Minister, Wolfgang Schauble, voiced fears others have only spoken about in private: that given the low showing of the "mainstream parties", there should be a truly technocratic government, with no career politicians involved.

Others, such as the appointed Pasok MP Elena Panaritis – an economist who advises the party leadership – say the elections should be postponed:

"If there’s an election so soon, then there’ll be elections again in two months, and an election the next months, and then we can kiss the country goodbye, and possibly the euro goodbye. If we’re not seriously looking at the repercussions we’re looking possibly at a situation like Russia in the early 1990s; then Russia had a poverty rate higher than under communism. And it had crooks running the country."

I have been reporting the Greek crisis now for two years, intermittently on the ground, and it looks like something changed, tangibly, in the past 10 days.

The established parties lost belief in what the EU is forcing them to do; parts of the EU lost belief in it too; and the people – quite wide layers of society – lost belief in the political class.

Governments around the world are all at varying stages of collapse. I fear what will replace them. Anomic breakdown, itself, sounds like something close to the spontaneous breakdown of current state tyranny. If it stopped there, new free markets would develop. However, many will seek to replace the power removed by anomic breakdown. The danger is in these replacements.

The real problem is that the masses may not be able to tell the difference between freedom and chains, and thus simply choose new shiny chains.

Reprinted with permission from Economic Policy Journal.

2012 Economic Policy Journal