September 21, 2011
Europe as a 'geographical expression'
Bret Stephens has a very serious article in the Wall Street Journal on what comes after the failed concept of "Europe": What is now happening in Europe isn't so much a crisis as it is an exposure: a Madoff-type event rather than a Lehman one. The shock is that it's a shock. Greece was never going to be bailed out and will, sooner or later, default. The banks holding Greek debt will, sooner or later, be recapitalized. The recapitalization will be borne by German taxpayers, and it will bring them-sooner rather than later-to the outer limit of their forbearance. The Chinese will not ride to the rescue: They know not to throw good money after bad. And then Italy will go Greek. Europe's crisis will lap on U.S. shores, and America's economic woes will lap on Europe's-a two-way tsunami. America will survive this because America is a state. But as Bismarck once remarked, "Whoever speaks of Europe is wrong. Europe is a geographical expression." The "fiscal union" that's being mooted will...(Read Full Post)