Thank you very much for taking the time to read the pamphlet on the myths and lies of the „Euro-crisis“. The full text is available as a download file here:
What is next?
Muddling through and tampering with crisis symptoms does not represent a viable option. A convincing alternative beyond self-defeating austerity has to be comprehensive and efficient. More specifically, we need strong and reliable safety nets with the objective to protect savers and small-scale investors effectively. The banking union, so far only adopted on insufficient terms, must be developed further into a true Bank Monitoring Union with the aim to restore citizens’ confidence in their personal financial transactions and the financial system as a whole – up to the assurance that those who caused the crisis have to pay for it.
Savings can only be built from output. Instead of a ‘fiscal union’ which only carries forward inflexible and undifferentiated austerity, we need a Fair Taxation Union. This must include budgetary rules and minimum taxation standards, the closing of tax loopholes as well as a burden shifting from small and middle-income earners to high-income recipients and wealth owners. First and foremost, we have to change tack towards growth and employment and open the way for a euro area budget and limited debt mutualisation. Alongside employment-enhancing structural reforms a public investment plan could be the driving force of a socially and environmentally sustainable transformation of the European economy. This investment initiative could be financed through a so-called ‘future fund’ with a neutral impact on government debt.
In addition, we need both an Economicand a Social Union. European social partners must be involved in the entire economic and social governance of the euro area and the EU. Structural reforms aiming at a more flexible economy must reconcile economic performance with social security (flexicurity). By coordination of negotiated wages or statutory minimum wages a productivity-oriented wage policy is set to secure the competitiveness of all countries.
The aim of the Political Union is not only to legitimize the economic reforms of the monetary union, but also to overcome the democratic deficit in the EU. As a first step, the European Parliament should establish a separate euro-area committee. Finally, we are committed to the vision that the political will of the European citizens has to be formulated directly and transparently in the European Parliament in association with national parliaments and to be implemented by an effective and efficient European executive.
Working Group on Finance and Social Union, SPÖ and SPD Brussels