Combatting the rise of authoritarianism today

JVL Introduction

JVL as such has not taken a position on Brexit and the European Union. But we clearly care passionately about the major issues of debt, banks, poverty, low investment and migration which DiEM25 has identified as the five crises Europe is suffering from. Dealing with them all in progressive ways is central to the Corbyn project.

So when Senator Bernie Sanders, the former US presidential candidate, and Yanis Varoufakis, co-founder of DiEM25, call on progressives worldwide to form an international movement to combat the rise of authoritarianism represented by Donald Trump we’re obviously on side.

Below is the text of a recent Diem25 communication, advocating this new initiative, with links to major articles by Bernie Sanders and Yanis Varouakis

In the first of a series of exchanges published in The Guardian, the pair described the urgent need for a ‘Progressive International’ that can bring together people across the globe around a vision of shared prosperity, security and dignity for all.

“While the very rich get much richer, people all over the globe are working longer hours for stagnating wages, and fear for their children’s future,” said Sanders. “Authoritarians exploit these economic anxieties, creating scapegoats which pit one group against another.”

Varoufakis said: “Our era will be remembered for the triumphant march of a Nationalist International that sprang out of the cesspool of financialised capitalism. Whether it will also be remembered for a successful humanist challenge to this menace depends on the willingness of progressives in the US, the EU, the UK as well as countries like Mexico, India and South Africa, to forge a coherent Progressive International.”

As a first step, Varoufakis called for the creation of a common council that draws out a blueprint for an International New Deal, a “progressive New Bretton Woods”.

“Yanis Varoufakis is exactly right,” Sanders underscored in his reply. “At a time of massive global wealth and income inequality, oligarchy, rising authoritarianism and militarism, we need a progressive international movement to counter these threats.”

Sanders went on to argue that, “the solution, as Varoufakis points out, is an international progressive agenda that brings working people together around a vision of shared prosperity, security and dignity for all people. The fate of the world is at stake. Let us go forward together now!”

Read the complete exchange here (Bernie Sanders) and here (Yanis Varoufakis).


Comments (2)

  • Richard Kuper says:

    See 100 Policies to End Austerity published by the Progressive Economy Forum.

    A first article appears today in The Conversation: Ending austerity: why public spending is key to building a stable and fair economy .

  • Danny says:

    Both these gentlemen told us to stay in the capitalist EU which accords fundamental freedoms to transnational corporations.

    There seems to be a tension between ends and means. Bernie Saunders rails against the transnational corporations, their abuses and their power. But he does not spell out what to do about them. Varoufakis recommends an international New Deal and a Bretton Woods. Neither the New Deal nor Bretton Woods were socialist and would leave intact the crushing power of the corporations under globalised capitalism, to the benefit of the authoritarian Right.

    We need far more discussion about what to do about globalised capitalism. It is good that JVL raises debates on these matters, we need to be discussing more important things than the endless Israel-Palestine-anti-Semitism bore.

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