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By Vassilis K. Fouskas, Constantine Dimoulas (auth.)

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Extra resources for Greece, Financialization and the EU: The Political Economy of Debt and Destruction

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In reality, however, they are an organic component of capitalism as a social system. 9 Along with the capitalist relations of production and exchange, the state itself generates crises as much as it fails to 16 Financialization and European ‘Integration’ solve them. 10 The capitalist, as Marx more than once put it in Capital, is capital personified yet he/she is unable to control capitalism and its cyclical crises. As we shall see in more detail below, all the ruling classes can do is to plan how to switch from one crisis accumulation regime to another, especially from Keynesian planning to liberal financialization regimes (we dwell extensively on this below).

23 Marx and Harvey concur that the separation of ‘real’ and ‘fictitious’ capital is internal to the composition of capital as a social relation and process. ‘Real’ and ‘fictitious’ forms of capital are inextricably connected and Leo Panitch and others working around the important review, Socialist Register, are correct in pointing this out. 24 As Marx has shown in the third volume of Capital and elsewhere, credit is consubstantial with the functional operation of capitalism as a dynamic social system.

Today’s crisis, moreover, is accompanied by ‘shock therapy’ austerity measures in the periphery, and with measured austerity programmes in the core. This precipitates the undermining of the welfare of the middle classes in the periphery initiating a new, radical political phase, whereas the core is experiencing a more protracted process of political disintegration cum radicalization. We are interested here in the complex articulation between capital, geo-politics and the state in the periphery in order to capture theoretically the specificity of Greece in European, Balkan, Middle Eastern and global contexts.

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