Skip to comments.EU power shifts from Brussels to Berlin
Posted on 01/06/2014 9:52:37 AM PST by Olog-hai
While the eurozone crisis in 2013 lingered in most countries, Germany seemed to be doing better than ever. It had low unemployment, high productivity and exports so strong that the European Commission asked it to do more to help ailing periphery countries in the single currency bloc.
Chancellor Angela Merkelthe most powerful leader in Europewas elected once again and took up a third mandate in a coalition government with the Social Democrats. [ ]
The famous questionWho do I call when I want to talk Europe?has no answer. The EU is too complicated. But 2013 showed that calling Berlin (or bugging its calls) is a good place to start.
(Excerpt) Read more at euobserver.com ...
Ve haff vays off making you talk.
Whod’a though we should be following political advice from Moscos and financial advice from Berlin?
Then again, whod’a thought we’d have a president who couldn’t pass a REAL college course?
Bush did...the dork didn’t.
Gasp, my spelling has reached Obamaphone user levels.
Sorry, it’s Bush’s fault.
Isn’t Brussels a muslim country now anyway?
If you’re ever in the neck of that woods, you’ll find the sheer number of mosques staggering. Not just the big impressive ones, but the small storefront ones - they’re all over the place, tucked away in courtyards and ancillary buildings.
What struck me as interesting was the number of ethnic Germans I saw outside some of these mosques; I was quite surprised. Sure, Turks, you expect that....but the number of ethnic Germans converting to Islam is becoming increasingly apparent.
Actually, Brussels is a city. Muslim or not.
Better get yourself an atlas.
But it's hard to argue with an economy that keeps everyone employed and gives the Germans the economic clout to run Europe as they've always thought they should.
So you find arguing with the social market economy hard? Its proponents hate what they call “Anglo-Saxon capitalism”.
If you've read anything I've ever posted on or commented on, you wouldn't ask such a silly question. I'm often criticized here for wanting too much liberty.
Of course, I hate their socialist "market" system. But, dude, I'm not German. I don't get to vote there. I was simply tellng you what will decide their election.
I’m just reacting to what you said. There absolutely are ways to argue against what Germany is up to. Their current “success” is based on beggar-thy-neighbor economics.
The electoral system is tightly controlled by the elites over there. Nobody got to vote on whether they want to be in the European Union or not (the majority of ordinary Germans don’t) and they certainly won’t get to vote on having “Anglo-Saxon capitalism” versus the social market economy.
Well, that only works when one's neighbors are beggars. The criticism of Germany for its export-heavy economy is laughable.
The complaining countries are profligate, inflationary, and drowning in debt. They debase their currencies causing their own prices and wages to rise and then whine like stuck-pigs when their citizens behave rationally and buy cheaper goods from countries who've been semi-rational.
Well, I can’t disagree with the notion of trade surplus being a target for valid criticism being ridiculous. But that is just by itself.
The “complaining countries” are just like Germany because they had to agree to the social market economy via treaty, and they have had their governments fall one by one when they rejected the “bailout” loans due to the draconian terms. Germany is no less profligate (they are still concealing a massive debt, albeit transparently) and the propaganda out of the EU ought not be believed at face value.
And the definition of “beggar thy neighbor” economic policy is one where a country turns its neighbors into beggars.
Look. I don't like coming across as a defender of the EU; I am not. And though I can support the concept of a currency zone, I most certainly think its execution in this case has been corrupt and dishonest beyond words.
All that said, I cannot blame Germany for the profligacy of the PIIGS [which is close to becoming the less evocative but more accurate PIFIGS]. They have, each and every one of them, turned themselves into beggars.
Germany just happens to be the one who has something to beg for.
You’re still missing the rest of the story. None of the countries that have received “bailout” loans wanted them in the first place; one by one, their governments fell and were replaced with governments that accepted them.
How could Germany go from the “sick man of Europe” to its leading economy in five short years? That bears some thinking about.
Germany the "sick man of Europe"? I never heard that.
I'm not doubting you, but to the extent that was true, it must have been a result of comparing them to the fake prosperity brought on by cheap credit the South was experiencing.
From previous posts, I realize that you are not an admirer of German economic and political policies. Apart from their idiotic energy programs, though, I think they've done quite well -- given the socialism, of course.
That was the 90s.
Because of all the costs of reunification.
That's a long time ago.
Though it doesn't really seem that way.
It’s not all that long ago. And citing the “costs of unification” alone is an oversimplification.
The major event shifting things in Germany’s favor was the creation of the euro. That currency, even born as a fiat currency, was designed with the German bloc in mind, and was detrimental to Club Med and the British sphere. The euro’s central bank played some very nasty interest rate games between 2007 and 2008 as well.
You may think this post is off topic, but...
It really is a BAD idea to push Tokyo into building a nuclear weapon...Chicoms. Trust me on this one...
Maybe. But Germany wasn't in such great shape under Schröder even with the Euro.
That currency, even born as a fiat currency, was designed with the German bloc in mind, and was detrimental to Club Med and the British sphere.
If somebody has to be the sick man, then sure, somebody else became the sick man.
But Germany's always had a strong manufacturing sector, and that counts for a lot.
They kept making things and improved their productivity, when other countries were pursuing financial illusions and building fanciful sand castles or houses of cards.
They deserve some credit for that.
Not only the wealth, but the independence and security of a country, appear to be materially connected with the prosperity of manufactures. Every nation, with a view to those great objects, ought to endeavor to possess within itself all the essentials of national supply. These comprise the means of subsistence, habitation, clothing and defense.Notwithstanding, even with a robust manufacturing sector, Germanys recovery was a bit too rapid; not even the USA, when manufacturing was over 50 percent of the total economy, could do that.
OK. That had crossed my mind, but I think to call it the "sick man of Europe" was inaccurate. The reasons for Germany's fiscal problems at the time were clear to see. Its economic output, however, remained strong and growing.
When the UK was termed "the sick man of Europe" in the early seventies, it was quite accurate. The country was stagnating under its socialist welfare structure.