Southern Europe Must Revolt Against Price Stability

It’s time for a revolution in the eurozone; the time for polite discussion has ended. What is at stake is not a percent or two of economic growth in the South, but rather the difference between a future of prosperity and a future of depression. The mindless happy talk of unity, solidarity and an ever closer union is now irrelevant and in bad taste. People are eating out of trash bins, and an entire generation is living on the dole.

If the South continues to permit the North to administer the poisonous medicine of monetary deflation and fiscal austerity, it will suffer needlessly for years. Yes, we all know that the ECB was modeled after the Bundesbank and part of the deal for Germany was that the euro would be as strong as the mark. But that was then, and this is now.

The eurozone is a multinational republic in which no country, no matter how high its credit rating, can act as hegemon. Germany has just two votes on the ECB’s governing council, not control and not a veto. Germany is just another member of the union, and the Bundesbank is just another regional branch of the Eurosystem. The ECB treaty was not intended as a suicide pact, and it can be interpreted liberally enough to permit what has to be done. If the constitutional court objects, then Germany can exit. She can’t force anyone else to.

The revolution must be led by France, Italy and Spain. They have already acted together at the last summit, when Monti refused to adjourn until Merkel made major concessions (since rescinded) about bank bailouts. These three men, Hollande, Monti and Rajoy, must form the nucleus of a bloc within the eurozone that demands open-ended QE until eurozone nominal growth rises to the mid-single-digits, and stays there.