The German economic online journal Deutsche Wirtschafts Nachrichten published a lengthy interview with Claudio Celani Sunday on the issue of the euro and alternatives to it. DWN identified Celani as “a journalist and co-editor of the EIR Strategic Alert Newsletter, and vice-chairman of MoviSol, the Italian wing of the LaRouche movement.”
DWN headlined the interview “Endgame: The Euro Could Become the Target of Speculators,” and began by asking Celani, “Has the European crisis been overcome? What is your view of the euro?” He replied, “The euro crisis has not been overcome. I think, rather, that the euro will not last much longer. The euro has really been a dead currency from the start. Its introduction was a geopolitical idea, completely decoupled from credit and the real economy. It is a purely monetary currency, which has never been able to work.
“Only the persisting expectation of nominal growth in the European Community postponed rigor mortis until 2008. It became clear no later than with the outbreak of the financial crisis: If the economy must [be sacrificed] to support the currency, and not the other way around, the currency is dead.”
Following many questions on George Soros’s potential speculations against currencies and potential attack on the euro, including the role of drug and mafia money in the Wall Street/London hedge fund casino, Celani was asked, “Haven’t the banks become dependent on central bank money?”
“Soros was a forerunner of the financial casino of the world of hedge funds, derivatives transactions, etc.,” he told DWN. “By now, all banks are in hedge funds, derivatives bets, etc. The 2008 crisis did not put the brakes on this; the situation has gotten even worse.
“The ratios no longer have any correspondence, as in Deutsche Bank with a current share capital of scarcely EU20 billion, EU1.7 trillion in assets and EU52 trillion in derivatives exposure! The case of other `systemically relevant’ banks is no different. The crash of the system is unavoidable.”
“What is the way out?” DWN asked. “Helicopter money, as the ECB is apparently considering seriously now?”
“No,” Celani said: “Helicopter money will make the situation worse. We have to reject the failed model of the universal bank and re-introduce the bank separation system of Glass-Steagall. As long as the commercial banks and investment banks stay under the same roof, it will be impossible to let bankrupt institutions fail. But if we separate the two, and decouple the real, goods-producing economy from the financial casino, we can save the former.
“For this purpose, MoviSol has directly sponsored or drafted a whole series of legislative proposals for bank separation in the Italian Parliament since 2012. At this moment there are seven bills in the Senate and at least four in the Chamber of Deputies, and these are sponsored by nearly all parties. But the legislature — as in most European countries — is so subordinate to the Executive, and ultimately to the EU, that they have made sure that these do not come up for debate.
“But, restructured commercial banks need opportunities for investment. In other words, credit for investment must not only be offered, but also demanded. The key word here: Public infrastructure programs.”
DWN responded that “the EU already has projects, the so-called Juncker Plan. What about that?”
“The Juncker plan is not adequate. The EU Commission has just announced setting the first part of the plan in motion and that it should bring EU76 billion in investments. But in reality, there are only EU10 billion from the EU there; the rest has to come from private investment.
“But above all, there is no strategy, no overall plan. Only isolated projects are funded, and mostly small ones which can have no essential macroeconomic effect.
“Instead of this,” Celani concluded, “the EU should take part in the Chinese project for a ‘New Silk Road’ and make appropriate sums available for investments in infrastructure corridors. The reconstruction of Syria and other countries in the Middle East and Africa can be part of this strategy. This could be financed through a development bank, which, in turn, requires rethinking the entire economic policy of the EU.”