Two ghosts are roaming around Europe – one of them has radically right views and the other, is radically left. The bad thing is that it’s every man for himself in his own country. Whoever manages to bring these two men together in a well-knit, pan-European International community would gain so much power and rank somewhere among Lenin and Pele in the pantheon of history.
For the time being, the two former officials are pursuing this task: Steve Bannon, a former White House chief strategist for Donald Trump, and Yianis Varoufakis, a former Greek minister of finance. Both of them are left without government support in their own countries and are now trying to lead the old continent into a new future.
Bannon is creating his own organization called The Movement in Brussels. For now, he does not have too much money, but if work starts to pick up, he will attract billions. It is well known that he has connections with Goldman Sachs and with the billionaire Mercer family. In the past they have invested a lot of money in him, and it is guaranteed that they will do so again.
Varoufakis created the movement DiEM25 or Democracy in Europe Movement 2025, which has already attracted 60,000 Europeans. Among them are prominent postmodernists, feminists and left-leaning publicists. Behind him stands the so-called Party of Davos, which refers to the gravitating network around George Soros, including investors in left-leaning parties and ideas.
The media mention Bannon with disdain, but they are deeply mistaken. He is fully in line with European populism and the Eurosceptic wave.* Conversely, Varoufakis receives great respect, but he shares all of the delusions of the old Social Democrats, which led Greece to a serious crisis.
Bannon maintains close ties with Viktor Orban in Hungary, Marine Le Pen in France, Nigel Farage in Britain, and all the other Italian, German, Swedish, Austrian – you name it – nationalists. He is meeting with leaders, speaking from their platforms, and is generally well received.
What can he offer them? As I have mentioned above, if he succeeds in establishing a common European project, he is likely to attract funding from certain U.S billionaires. Furthermore, he is a former vice president of Cambridge Analytica, a data analysis and election strategist firm. The company was closed because it was too successful, and because it was charged with stealing Facebook profile information. But it is obvious that it will continue doing the same job under a different name, and that Bannon will have access to its cutting-edge election technology, exactly what the European populists are missing.
Money and super-modern election technology, what more does new right populism need? It needs a prominent global ideologist, the one Bannon is trying to become. His biography is very dynamic. He has accomplished a lot in his life, but he has never managed to keep his position for long. First he was an officer in the U.S Navy, then an investment banker, climate change researcher, Hollywood producer, political ideologist, publisher, author, chief executive of Trump’s presidential campaign and chief White House strategist until he plunged into disgrace. In addition, he has had three marriages and three divorces.
He is also one of the founders of the tea party movement in the Republican Party, which was later transformed into the so-called alt-right, or the alternative right, which currently occupies the minds of the U.S working class.** His ideology includes suspending immigration and stopping Islamicization, as well as limiting free trade. After being accused of being a “white nationalist,” i.e., racist, Bannon replied that he is an economic nationalist. Unlike other right-wing activists, he proposes increased taxation of the richest, in order to ease the middle class. Moreover, he often criticizes libertarian icons such as Friedrich Hayek, Ludwig von Mises and the novelist Ayn Rand. Rand’s “objectivism,” he claims, is intended to turn people into goods and objects.
They call Bannon the “traditionalist.” Some argue that his ideas are related to the Russian philosopher Aleksandr Dugin and those of Benito Mussolini. Furthermore, he draws many of his theories for the so-called fourth turning of the U.S para-historians Neil Howe and William Strauss.*** It’s about huge developments in the national culture and social attitudes in the developed world, which occur approximately every 80 years; the time for one such turning point is now, and Bannon is trying to lead the movement.
It seems to me that most of Bannon’s viewpoints are music to the ears of emerging right-wing populism, which wins simply because social democracy threw its classic causes into a bucket, and Bannon stuck his hand in and pulled them out. The right has become more left than the quasi-left. And so, in my opinion, Bannon has a future in Europe as long as he can prove useful to its national leaders.
His opponent Varoufakis has not retained positions for long either. He was born into quite a wealthy Greek family, and first obtained a masters of science in mathematics and then a doctorate in economics in England. He taught in Britain, the United States and Australia, and even obtained Australian citizenship. A brilliant rhetorician, he calls himself “an erratic Marxist.” But I personally suspect that he is one of those talented intellectuals who the elite implants in the leftist movements in order to poison their minds.
Generally speaking, the elite have always infiltrated left-wing parties with its agent-provocateurs. Sometimes, it has even created the parties themselves beforehand. For example, the results of the first Syriza government in Greece in 2015 were deplorable for the people and glorious for the European financial oligarchy, because Syriza figuratively received Greek land as collateral for the country’s heavy indebtedness. Varoufakis personally lied to the Greeks that he would achieve a much better agreement for the debt, and achieved one which was three times worse. It would have much better for the nation if Syriza had never been voted into power and the right wing party had continued to govern.
Now the DiEM25 movement aims to democratize the European Union. It plans to convene a constitutional assembly of the EU in 2025, which will turn the European Parliament into a true sovereign legislature. Why don’t I believe this? First of all, because Europe cannot be democratized from the top down. Democracy is the work of nations. Brussels is about bureaucracy. Secondly, while he was in power in Greece, why didn’t Varoufakis propose to do anything about democratizing his own country? All the problems that our southern neighbor has stem from the fact that its elite are completely irresponsible with regard to the voters. The reason is in the proportional electoral system, where people choose no one, and the parties appoint the members of the parliament. On top of that, the leading party receives a bonus of 50 parliamentary mandate seats out of a total of 300 in order to achieve “stability.”
While Varoufakis was in power, he could have proposed only a democratic majority vote, but he did not do so. And he is not doing this now either, even though he is pretending to democratize Europe. Therefore, in my opinion, professor Yianis is the latest fraud. He pretends to be Marxist, but at the same time he is missing any “class approach.” He does not care at all what the laboring class in Europe and in Greece wants. Yianis is against nationalism, he defends illegal immigration, supports identity politics, multiculturalism, genderism and everything else that makes ordinary Greeks want to curse. However, he is an ardent supporter of the so-called minimum basic income, one delusional fantasy (if you ask me). That is why I personally think that Varoufakis will not be able to extend his authority umbrella-like over the new and radical European left. He is not a solution to the problem, but the problem itself.
*Editor’s note: Eurosceptic refers to a person opposed to increasing the powers of the European Union.
**Editor’s note: “Alt-right” refers to an offshoot of conservatism mixing racism, white nationalism and populism.
***Editor’s note: Neil Howe and William Strauss are the authors of “The Fourth Turning: An American Prophesy – What the Cycles of History Tell Us About America’s Next Rendezvous with Destiny.”
Leave a Reply
You must be logged in to post a comment.