How to save Europe
Chronicles: On Our Troubled Times by Thomas Piketty
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
This is a translation of monthly articles written between 2008 and 2015 for Libération, devoted almost entirely to the crises before the European Union and Piketty’s proposals of how to confront them. Though written before Trump, Brexit or the Catalonian secession movement, they are still timely, especially regarding immigration, deficit, debt and what he and I see as the biggest problem of all, gross and expanding inequality within the European Union and between it and the much poorer sections of the world. Much higher taxes on corporate profits and an end to the extreme low-balling of taxes that, especially, Ireland and Luxembourg have offered to attract the huge global enterprises, which make their money in the bigger and richer countries but pay near 0 taxes where they can; investing much more heavily in education, local public transport and other services that especially benefit the working class and other poor; coordinated EU fiscal policy by creating a council of the economics ministers of all eurozone countries, to set zone-wide policy by simple majority, and a real innovation, political transparency, so citizens can know how and why decisions were made and how each participant voted — these are among his principal and reiterated proposals. None of them easy to achieve, but all worth fighting for.