The Eyes of the World Are Upon Us
by Helga Zepp-LaRouche
Helga Zepp-LaRouche, founder of the international Schiller Institutes, issued the following appeal on May 1, 2013, under the headline, "Appeal to the People and Congress of the United States: Mobilize and Pass Glass-Steagall Now!"
I am appealing to you from Germany, to you, the American people, and to the American Congress. We are facing right now, an existential crisis in Europe. The entire trans-Atlantic world is in a breakdown crisis which is much, much worse than that of the 1930s. But still, the memory of what policy choices were taken in the 1930s, is extremely important. Because in the United States, you had President Franklin D. Roosevelt, who implemented Glass-Steagall, the separation of the banks; he called in the Pecora Commission; he went with a credit policy of the New Deal, and reconstructed the American economy in such a way, that by the end of World War II, America was the strongest economy in the world.
As you know, in Europe, unfortunately, things went in a completely different direction. We had Mussolini in Italy, Franco in Spain, Pétain in France, and in Germany, after the brutal austerity of Brüning, it went to Hjalmar Schacht and Hitler, with all the known consequences.
Unfortunately, today, the policy of Brüning, that is, severe cuts in the living standards of the population, is the policy of the Troika—the European Central Bank, the IMF, and the EU Commission—in their prescriptions, especially for Southern Europe. As a consequence, the economies of Southern Europe are completely collapsing, disintegrating. The living standard is going downhill, life expectancy is shortened. These are life-shortening measures. Youth unemployment in some countries is up to 60%! The suicide rate goes up.
The Nations of Europe Have Lost Their Sovereignty
These are human rights violations. This was the finding of a special rapporteur of the United Nations who just visited Greece. Because of the character of the euro, which is a failed experiment, and the de facto diktat of the Brussels bureaucracy, the European nations have lost their sovereignty. However, the tensions between the southern Europeans—the Greek people, the Italians, the Spanish—and the Germans, is increasing, because they blame the German people for what is the policy of Brussels and of Chancellor Merkel.
Also, the tensions between France and Germany are on the rise again. This is very dangerous: One of the evil-doers, one of the architects of this failed euro policy, the former head of the Eurogroup, Jean-Claude Juncker, even made the parallel to 1913, saying one should not think that a repeat of those developments which led to World War I would not be thinkable.
Because of the disunity of Europe, there is no way, with the present EU dictatorship, that this policy will be changed; and as long as countries are in this system, they have no control over their own policies. In addition, the political system in Europe, the parliamentary system, makes it much, much harder for the average person to talk to their parliamentarians, because they are bound by what is called "the faction duty."
Therefore, you in America, have a very good advantage: You have the privilege of the American Revolution, the American Constitution, and a political system which allows the average citizen to talk to their Congressman, their Senators, and have a direct relationship, and remind them that they are responsible for the common good of the people. This is a big privilege. We in Europe right now have no sovereignty, and it is a question, which is very doubtful, whether the solution will come from Europe.
So, please be aware of your proud tradition of the American Revolution, of the heritage of Abraham Lincoln, of Franklin D. Roosevelt, of Martin Luther King. I'm appealing to you to go into the biggest mobilization you have ever made, to implement Glass-Steagall, because if the American Congress implements Glass-Steagall, then very soon, all of the European countries will follow, and that is the only way I can see how the world can escape a terrible catastrophe.