Euro : when extremes converge

by | 20 Jan 2019 | Economy – Social - Tech

Opposed to the current European Union, and critics of the single currency, the Rassemblement National (RN) and La France Insoumise (LFI) have launched their campaigns a couple of days ago in perspective of the next European elections.

In France, according to whether you are more “Power to the People” (RN, to whom you can add its subsidiary Debout la France) or “Now the People” (LFI), you already have two competing offers to vote against Europe.

The Movement of Yellow Vests seems for the moment to benefit especially the first. Hence the attempts of the leaders of LFI to circumvent the RN by his right :

  • it is Jean-Luc Mélenchon who is ecstatic about the Yellow Vest Eric Drouet, the very one who had suggested on BFM to walk on the Elysée … and who sees in his homonymy with Jean-Baptiste Drouet, the one who had recognized King Louis XVI on the road to Varennes, the sign of the Revolution on the move …
  • it is François Ruffin who extols the merits of the plotter Etienne Chouard, a close friend of Alain Soral ;
  • others mention Citizen Initiative Referendums (RIC in French) on same sex-marriage for all (Eric Coquerel), or the death penalty (Adrien Quatennens).

On the euro too, the same line

On the euro, convergence has also occured.

Jordan Bardella, head of the list of the Rassemblement National in the European elections, recently confirmed that the exit of the euro was no longer a priority for the extreme right movement: “On the euro, you have to be very Clear, during the presidential election (2017-author’s note), we have not been able to convince on this issue. I think the brutal exit that we wanted to propose on the euro, on the European Union, scared a lot of French” he said on January 14 on the French BFM TV.

RN’s monetary doctrine remains unclear and subject to adjustment, and is in fact marked by a deep misunderstanding of what money is. But let us simply say, in short, that the exit of the euro, once the centerpiece of the front-line economic policy, is at least postponed in time and in any case demoted in relation to other priorities.

The RN, he suggested, is very much in tune with a “changing” Europe, where far-right parties (League of Matteo Salvini in Italy, FPÖ in Austria) arrive or participate in the power.

On the side of La France Insoumise, Manon Aubry, the head of the list, recalled on the French radio RMC on January 18 the constant position of his party. This is what the “European alternative left” calls the “Plan B strategy”.

The “plan B” principle consists in imagining an approach of disobedience, unilateral but open to cooperation, in the event that a common renegotiation of the Treaties would fail, or in other words, in the event that the “plan A” fails. Of “plan A”, we do not know much about it, except that it is the one that still stops most of the leftist forces that campaign for “another Europe”.

In the doctrine of LFI, Plan B is simultaneously supposed to contribute to the success of “Plan A”, raising fears to other States that their intransigence leads to the break-up of the EU or the euro zone.

We are therefore in the balance of power that Mr Bardella wants to establish in the heart of the European Institutions. Without clearer elements on what is proposed on the Euro.

Money does not lie

This convergence on the fundamental question of money is one of the many signs of a deeper movement.

It is obvious that the two political formations were originally in conflicting worlds of values, and defending social projects opposed to each other.

The central core of the Rassemblement National ideology is an authoritarian and organicist nationalism. French society is perceived as a living body, whose good health depends on its ethnocultural homogeneity, to which should be subordinated the rights of individuals and minorities. I had summarized this in a chronicle, the fear of others.

The stability of this doctrinal core through time can be verified through the speeches of the leaders, the party texts and the voting motives of its electors.

In such an approach, the relation to European integration appears as a peripheral element that illustrates and demonstrates the nationalist, organicist and “alterophobic” heart of the FN.

On the side of La France Insoumise on the contrary, internationalism, even if its leaders abandon it under pressure,  is an integral part of the history of the militants, as of the “ecosocialist” doctrine which they have equipped themselves. In a resolution of the Parti de Gauche (the former LFI) of April 2011, orchestrated by the economist Jacques Généreux, you can read : “the euro, in itself, is not the cause of the current crisis that is attributable to financialized capitalism and neoliberal policies “.

Hence the solution outlined at that time and of which LFI has not departed : rather than “submission or exit, a third way out, subversive action within the association”.

In a modern economy, the different economic agregates (production, income, consumption, savings, etc.) take on a monetary form. An employee receives a monetary salary in return for his participation in production. But this income does not come from money, it comes from production. It is therefore permissible here to recall, for all intents and purposes, that creating money, in the form of banknotes or scriptural money, creates no value and no income if this creation of money is not closely linked to the creation of value.

Some 340 million Europeans live today in the 19 countries of the euro area, and they have largely understood that reality.

According to an annual barometer of the European Commission, conducted in mid-October by telephone with a representative sample of 17,500 citizens of the 19 countries of the euro area, two thirds of respondents (64%) believe that the single currency is “a good thing For their country”.

Far from underestimating the dysfunctions that have emerged, a large majority also wants “more coordination” between economic policies.

On the other hand, any “subversive action” on money is an action against “the People” that the two movements pretend to defend.

Iconography : euro and dollar notes © AFP