Rightists May End Europe's Depression

Those on the right of the European political spectrum are calling for a breakup of the Eurozone and the European Union and they are growing rapidly in popularity. This from The Telegraph:

The leader of France's far-Right party has vowed that the European Union would "collapse like the Soviet Union" as she conspired to form what would be the most radical faction yet seen in the European parliament.

Marine Le Pen, buoyed by a weekend by-election triumph in southern France, criticised the EU as a "global anomaly" and pledged to return the bloc to a "cooperation of sovereign states".

She said Europe's population had "no control" over their economy or currency, nor over the movement of people in their territory.

"I believe that the EU is like the Soviet Union now: it is not improvable," she said. "The EU will collapse like the Soviet Union collapsed."

Ms Le Pen, 45, will next month travel to Holland to chart a joint campaign with Geert Wilders, whose anti-Islamic Freedom Party (PVV) currently tops national opinion polls for May's European elections.

They are opposed by those who are internationalist in their outlook:

Guy Verhofstadt, a former Belgian PM, urged mainstream parties across Europe to stand firm against the forces of extremism that fuelled the Second World War.

"If we allow these forces to gain a foothold once again on our continent we will have wasted a century of building closer ties and condemned history to repeat itself," he said.

President François Hollande of France warned this week that the prospect of a significant anti-EU grouping could lead to "regression and paralysis" in Europe, adding that it could threaten the continent's ability to recover from the after-effects of the crisis in the Eurozone. 

Ironically, John Maynard Keynes' analysis of about 80 years ago coincides with that of the current European right, and not with Europe's current elites. In his The General Theory of Employment, Interest and Money, Keynes argued:

A favorable [trade] balance, provided it is not too large, will prove extremely stimulating; whilst an unfavorable balance may soon produce a state of persistent depression. (p. 338)

The following graph, which my father, son and I published in an August 2012 American Thinker commentary (Deficit Spending Doesn't Work; Balancing Trade Does) shows that those Eurozone countries with trade deficits have high unemployment rates and those with trade surpluses have low unemployment rates:


Now, a little over a year later, the same five countries still have trade deficits, and their unemployment rates have risen even further, as shown in the table below:

Country

2012 Jobless Rate

2013 Jobless Rate

Greece

23.1%

27.6%

Portugal

15.0%

16.4%

Spain

24.6%

26.3%

Italy

10.8%

12.2%

France

10.0%

10.9%

Country

2012 Jobless Rate

2013 Jobless Rate

Greece

23.1%

27.6%

Portugal

15.0%

16.4%

Spain

24.6%

26.3%

Italy

10.8%

12.2%

France

10.0%

10.9%

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