Senator Bernie Sanders, the former US presidential candidate, and Yanis Varoufakis, co-founder of DiEM25 , are calling on progressives worldwide to form an international movement to combat the rise of authoritarianism represented by Donald Trump.
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!”