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Europe needs Germany to lighten up
The Washington Post ^ | Tuesday, May 15, 2012 | Editorial Board

Posted on 05/15/2012 8:50:18 PM PDT by MinorityRepublican

IT MAY ALREADY be too late to prevent Greece from defaulting on its debts and leaving the euro, Europe’s common currency. But there still may be time to prevent Greece’s woes from dragging down the rest of Europe, and the world. For that to happen, though, Europe’s leaders must think clearly about the issues before them, especially the great “austerity vs. growth” debate.

When European and, indeed, U.S. critics condemn austerity, what they usually have in mind is the combination of tax hikes, spending cuts and structural reforms that Germany and other surplus-earning countries in the northern half of the continent, as well as the International Monetary Fund (IMF), are imposing on the debtors in the south, in return for financial support.

In their demand for growth, however, the critics fail to explain how to fund it. Countries such as Spain, Italy and Portugal have lost credibility in global bond markets — and competitiveness in the global market for goods and services. Under any reasonable scenario, even one in which Germany and the IMF relaxed deficit-reduction targets, these countries would still have to shed wasteful government programs, improve tax compliance and, most of all, make their labor markets more flexible.

What deserves more attention is the threat to Europe from austerity in the surplus countries. Despite its super-competitiveness with respect to its neighbors, Germany (and, to a lesser extent, the Netherlands) continues to slash budget deficits and restrain wages. Between 2008 and 2011, Spain cut unit labor costs by 8.5 percent, compared with the rest of Europe. That’s great — until you consider that Germany also cut its labor costs by almost 2 percent, maintaining its wide lead over everyone else.

(Excerpt) Read more at washingtonpost.com ...


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Editorial; Extended News; Foreign Affairs; Germany; News/Current Events; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS:

1 posted on 05/15/2012 8:50:20 PM PDT by MinorityRepublican
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To: MinorityRepublican

Spain cut it’s labor costs by shippng it’s labor to Germany; their government is actively urging them to go, and Germany is willing to take them as long as they have a skill and speak German.


2 posted on 05/15/2012 9:01:09 PM PDT by kearnyirish2
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To: MinorityRepublican

Lighten up, we’re only driving over a cliff, no worries.


3 posted on 05/15/2012 9:01:45 PM PDT by GeronL (The Right to Life came before the Right to Pursue Happiness)
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To: MinorityRepublican
The Washington Post = Greece.
4 posted on 05/15/2012 9:02:11 PM PDT by Theoria (Rush Limbaugh: Ron Paul sounds like an Islamic terrorist)
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To: MinorityRepublican

So what if its a thousand foot dive into a foot of water, lighten up dude.


5 posted on 05/15/2012 9:06:58 PM PDT by GeronL (The Right to Life came before the Right to Pursue Happiness)
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To: MinorityRepublican

That’s right — let’s just all spend more and have a great party! Surely that is the way out of the crisis!


6 posted on 05/15/2012 9:10:56 PM PDT by Fractal Trader
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To: MinorityRepublican

Hey, the Mafia wants that money you owe them.

— Nah, I just bet it all on a horse, it’s 15-1 but its a sure thing.

You are nuts, you are seriously going to die.

— Lighten up, what’s the worst that could happen?


7 posted on 05/15/2012 9:11:02 PM PDT by GeronL (The Right to Life came before the Right to Pursue Happiness)
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To: MinorityRepublican
So what the Post is saying is that the Germans need to become less efficient so that the rest of Europe will be more competitive.

That's just pathetic.

8 posted on 05/15/2012 9:11:31 PM PDT by Bruce Campbells Chin
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To: GeronL

Besides, if Germany reduces it’s spending and deficit, it makes Zero look bad. So Germany should throw a party. And Zero should keep the party going. Classic ruling class BS. Whoopee!!


9 posted on 05/15/2012 9:12:40 PM PDT by ModelBreaker
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To: MinorityRepublican

The bitter truth is that deficit spending squanders capital, results in unsustainable debt and leads to poverty. Bankruptcy is more than an abstraction or some benign “chapter nine” experience. Financial gimmicks can never restore prosperity. If austerity is rejected by the Greeks, Italians, Spaniards and French, their ability to import the fuel, food, manufactured and electronic goods that make modern living possible will be severely limited. Things will get ugly. The Germans would be wise not to fund more futile bailouts but to get their non essential personnel out of those countries.


10 posted on 05/15/2012 9:13:55 PM PDT by allendale
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To: ModelBreaker; abb; PJ-Comix

We face total economic meltdown. Financial Armageddon.... but LIGHTEN UP.

lol

Hey Washington Post, your losses are staggering, your readership is dwindling, your credibility is shot and you are the verge of extinction.... but LIGHTEN UP.


11 posted on 05/15/2012 9:15:57 PM PDT by GeronL (The Right to Life came before the Right to Pursue Happiness)
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To: Bruce Campbells Chin

To the people of Europe... you have been robbed and mocked by your own governments. but LIGHTEN UP.


12 posted on 05/15/2012 9:16:59 PM PDT by GeronL (The Right to Life came before the Right to Pursue Happiness)
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To: allendale; Morgana; Lazamataz; John Semmens

Lighten up dude, it’s only money. lol.

We can use this ‘lighten up’ thing to mock them mercilessly.


13 posted on 05/15/2012 9:18:33 PM PDT by GeronL (The Right to Life came before the Right to Pursue Happiness)
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To: MinorityRepublican

LOL!

Germany is the problem? LOL!


14 posted on 05/15/2012 9:33:53 PM PDT by mylife (The Roar Of The Masses Could Be Farts)
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To: MinorityRepublican

The article contains a link to a celebrated buffoon-

http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/austerity-as-a-bridge-to-nowhere/2012/05/07/gIQAVBAw8T_story.html

Eugene Robinson
Opinion Writer
Austerity as a bridge to nowhere
_________________________________________________________________________
The Takers and the MSM are attempting to again change the connotation of words.
Gov’t participation = Economic growth
Homosexual = gay (AIDS & anal condylomata be damned)


15 posted on 05/15/2012 10:10:54 PM PDT by seton89 (Pecunia in arboribus non crescit.)
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To: MinorityRepublican

Lighten Up, Francois.


16 posted on 05/15/2012 10:12:47 PM PDT by dfwgator
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To: MinorityRepublican
The talk is, suddenly, of a Euro depression.

The World’s Biggest Debtor Nations

Northern Europe is a zombie (Sweden, Netherlands, Finland). Germany is at 184% of GDP, the UK @ 451%, and Ireland, the former darling of the PIGS, is at 1,240% of their GDP!!! YIKES!!!

It's ugly and will only get worse, even with a regime change because the host is D...E...A..D...

17 posted on 05/15/2012 10:34:18 PM PDT by uncommonsense (Conservatives believe what they see; Liberals see what they believe.)
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To: MinorityRepublican
"spending cuts and structural reforms that Germany and other surplus-earning countries in the northern half of the continent"

Huh...??? They top 200% + of their GDP in spending, and SPENDING CONTINUES TO GO UP".

But we don't need no skinkin' facts...

18 posted on 05/15/2012 10:40:12 PM PDT by uncommonsense (Conservatives believe what they see; Liberals see what they believe.)
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To: MinorityRepublican

Now that Obama, with the support of the NY Times and the Washington Post, has saved the American economy by printing Monopoly money for 3 1/2 years the Post feels that the most successful economy in Europe should follow us down the drain.


19 posted on 05/16/2012 2:27:37 AM PDT by Iron Munro (If Repubbies paid as much attention to Rush as the 'Rats we wouldn't be in this mess)
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To: Bruce Campbells Chin

It’s actually the essence of socialism.All the high nails get hammered down.


20 posted on 05/16/2012 3:30:59 AM PDT by Farmer Dean (stop worrying about what they want to do to you,start thinking about what you want to do to them)
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To: MinorityRepublican

1. More debt is not an “investment” and does not lead to growth.

2. The government is the worst imaginable “investor” and should leave such things to the business world.


21 posted on 05/16/2012 3:45:58 AM PDT by Moltke (Always retaliate first.)
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To: MinorityRepublican
ME to the Wash Compost Editorial Board -- go take a flying leap. It's not Germany's duty, job, nor responsibility to 'save' anyone but themselves.

FYI you socialist euro worshipers of the Compost, the EU and Euro is on life support. Prognosis - Fatal. 5-6 months to live. Don't believe me, fine. Search YouTube for Nigel Farage from the UK. He'll tel you the same thinks, jerkweeds.

22 posted on 05/16/2012 4:26:06 AM PDT by Condor51 (Yo Hoffa, so you want to 'take out conservatives'. Well okay Jr - I'm your Huckleberry)
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To: mylife
LOL! Germany is the problem? LOL!

For sure - much of the Euro crowd was happy to do it because they would be boosted by Germany, Then they opted to do business as usual and screwed the pooch. Now they're pi$$ed because Gremany won't ruin herself by throwing good Euros after bad...

23 posted on 05/16/2012 5:16:19 AM PDT by trebb ("If a man will not work, he should not eat" From 2 Thes 3)
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To: MinorityRepublican
In their demand for growth, however, the critics fail to explain how to fund it.
Since when does growth have to be “funded?” Obama’s stimulus program sure involved a lot of funds, but where is the growth? This article was obviously written by a Keynesian lunatic.
24 posted on 05/16/2012 10:00:47 AM PDT by cartan
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