Mini-BOTs, complementary currencies and the European monetary malaise

On May 28th, the Italian Chamber of Deputies approved a resolution requiring the government to issue the so-called mini-BOTs. Under such a name, reference is made to Treasury bills issued in small denominations (in Euros), bearing no interest, with no expiry date, and which the Italian Exchequer would accept as a means of payment of taxes. The proposal has been predictably met with marked skepticism by European institutions and by the Italian Minister of Economy and Finance. However, the wisest move, in prudential, political and economic terms, would be that European institutions would embrace experimentation with complementary currencies, in genuine federal spirit.

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The End of the Eurocrats’ Dream in Endless Europe

One person’s dream is another person’s nightmare. This oneiric truth indicates the relative meaning of dreams, yet it also invites a wake-up call. The End of the Eurocrats’ Dream volume edited by Damian Chalmers, Markus Jachtenfuchs and Christian Joerges is such a wake-up call warning fellow academics, European politicians and the general public that what used to be presented by many advocates and agents of European integration as a wonderful dream is now often experienced as a nightmare with potentially disastrous effects for European and national politics in all countries of the EU.

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Is the European Central Bank Becoming a Central Bank for the People of Europe?

In February 2016, while David Cameron and the other EU-leaders were busy negotiating the terms of Britain’s membership of the Union, the European Central Bank (ECB) did something curious. It changed its self-description on its website from: the ECB “is the central bank for Europe’s single currency, the euro” to: the ECB “is the central bank for the euro area” and “of the 19 European Union countries which have adopted the euro.” The ECB, it seems, confines itself no longer to being the central bank of a free floating currency, defying and denying national specificities and territorial borders. Furthermore, its governmental activities are no longer limited to governing the currency: it claims to govern for the euro area as a central bank of the 19 euro countries.

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