Greece's Syriza party has put its foot down to demand an end to the troika's agenda, and now Spain's Podemos party has risen even more quickly than Syriza to join them. This is what democracy looks like -- even the rigid, unaccountable structure of the eurozone will not be able to stop it from spreading.
Citizens of the eurozone countries didn't know when they formed the monetary union that they were not only losing their sovereign and democratic rights to control their most important macroeconomic policies. They had also ceded this power to people with an anti-social-Europe agenda. Now Greece is trying to get some of that democracy back.
For the moment what matters for the vast majority of Greek people is that for the first time they feel they have a government which, despite its compromises, has proved that it made its best effort to bring Europe back to the table for a fair and equal negotiation about the terms of the Greek bailout program.
Restated for the 21st century, "socialism" simply means that a people's judgments about its own economic life come before the supposedly iron rules of the international economy. It would be fair to call it "economic democracy." The condescending view of the Greeks as somehow not understanding economic reason and the direction of history writes off this kind of economic democracy as infeasible, archaic, and probably senseless. Syriza's government has a chance to reverse the lens. Economic democracy (or, as Syriza calls it, socialism) is politics that puts human needs first and accepts that market-based destabilization, impoverishment, and humiliation are not natural disasters or comeuppance for bad behavior but forms of political violence.
The new Greek government needs support in establishing pro-growth policies which create jobs, expand their economy and enable them to pay down their debts. Demanding that creditors are paid before any of that is allowed to happen may come at a very heavy price for more than just the people of Greece.
On Wednesday the European Central Bank announced it would no longer accept Greek government bonds and government-guaranteed debt as collateral. But Syriza's leadership are playing it smart. They responded to the ECB's assault without animosity or denunciations. They want the world to know who is the aggressor here and who is being reasonable.