Greece is in turmoil. Well, it has been for the last year.
But what’s that got to do with your exam? Firstly, there is a huge question as to whether they can survive in the Eurozone anymore. This is key to the survival of the confidence in the Euro. The fear is that rating agencies will turn to other flagging states, like Portugal and they will follow Greece to the exit door of the Eurozone. If Greece accepts the bail out conditions they will be subjected to the will of the Trioka, (IMF,ECB and E.U.)in running their economy. This raises questions of sovereignty and the autonomy of the Greek government, which is a hugely contentious issue. Pooled sovereignty is looking more like controlled sovereignty by EU institutions, where Germany is hugely influential.
Second, it’s impact politically. The riots in Athens could be a prelude to Far Right groups gaining public support, this becomes evermore likely with rising public protest at the severe austerity already imposed – there could be serious ramifications for the future democracy in the E.U.
Under the guidance of Mario Draghi, (who replaced Jean-Claude Trichet as head of the ECB in November 2011) renowned for his fiscal prudence, the ECB are becoming far more authoritative and assertive in their role. The current economic crisis in the Eurozone has also diminished the role of the European Commission, and given greater say to the European Council, with the heads of state wanting to dominate proceeding, (note the number of summits held in Brussels these days compared with a few years ago). This has implications for the lack of democracy in the running of the EU, which has further implications on its direction. (Watch Record Europe,18.02.2012 and Newsnight BBC2, Monday 20.02.2012 for background to the Greek problem – note these will expire within a week of broadcast)
Let’s be honest: there is more life in my Greek yoghurt than in their economy.
Let’s see how it pans out.