Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Europe turning against the euro?

Well, we're not quite there yet. But those who still think - and there are some - that reservations about the future of the euro is something which exists primarily amongst the we-told-you-so bunch on the Tory backbenches, should try to pick up a European paper once in a while.

While the tone and focus on the criticism differ - depending on the prevalent attitude to Europe in the respective countries - media across Europe is clearly becoming increasingly disillusioned with the entire euro-project. And it would be strange otherwise.

An opinion piece in Expansión - Spain's main financial daily - argued:
"The next foreseeable step is that the other peripheral European countries, whose welfare is in question, will question the legitimacy of a supranational body which holds very little democratic counterweight to impose blood and tears."
An opinion piece from Spanish daily La Razón's Brussels correspondent, Jorge Valero, titled "the sweet decadence of Europe", argued:
"The slow exit from the recession, in comparison to the US and emerging economies, has revealed the shadows, imbalances and contradictions of the jewel in the crown of the European utopia: the euro."
Moving to France, a comment piece in Le Figaro noted:
"The Greek domino fell during last spring. The Irish domino has been wobbling over the last days. The Spanish domino will follow suit, along with the Portuguese domino. This is all very sad for those experts who conceived the eurozone and put it into practice - by pursuing an often absurd monetary policy which led to the 'genocide' of our industry."
In Germany, the front page of yesterday's Handelsblatt carried the headline: "The next Ireland is called Portugal", while an article in the paper noted that the current crisis has "once again revealed the two-tier society of the eurozone." An article in FAZ warned against the EU's "bizarre bailout logic" that because Ireland has been granted a bailout, then "there is no need to worry about Portugal and Spain."

In today's Handelsblatt, a comment piece argues:
"whether we can save the euro, is questionable. It is however sure that we become gravediggers when we push countries in crisis into a straightjacket".
As we note in a previous post, in yesterday's Die Welt, Dorothea Siems expressed some strong views:
"The euro-adventure stands the risk of meeting a terrible end. Germany must make clear where the borders of what it can bear lay. This is because the euro isn't a goal in itself. The EU is a lot more than just Euroland. Not because of national power play, but because of a sense for reality. The future of the EU should not be made dependent on the euro, simply for the reason of not wanting to harm European unity in the long-term."
Further north, an analysis piece in Swedish daily Svenska Dagbladet noted that:
"it took six months for the markets to figure out that the miracle cure against the debt disease which the EU-doctors prescribed this Spring consisted of worthless soda water."
An opinion piece in the Hungarian paper Magyar Nemzet by columnist Anna Szabo argues:
“The eurozone, which most East-Central European states wanted to join, is now marching towards uncertainty […] Until now the requirements for the introduction of the euro could be sidestepped without punishment and now [all eurozone countries] are facing the consequences.”
Meanwhile, Hungarian news magazine HVG reports that the Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban has said that Hungary “is glad that it is not in the eurozone.”

3 comments:

David Barneby said...

Forcing Ireland to accept a bailout was an error of judgement , letting the EU panic be seen . Far from solving Ireland's problems , it will have exacerbated them , puting off a default to a later date , when their debts will be even greater . The commission/ECB forcing the issue , may possibly have triggered the need to bailout Portugal , Spain and Italy .
In my opinion Ireland should have defaulted . Everyone is under a spell of EU BLACKMAIL , that if you don't conform you are a traitor , letting the other 26 states down . It is time that at least one state stood up to be counted , to say enough is enough ; they would do a good service to the other member states . The EU is like an egg , crack it and the whole egg will be declared bad . In truth the EU keeps going just to fuel the gravy train .

Anonymous said...

The United Kingdom should pull out of the European Union while it still has a chance of being solvent . Stay and we commit harikari.

Stan Smith

Lincoln UK

Elli Davis said...

Stan, it's harakiri, not harikari.

Nevertheless, I can only agree with David here - Slovakia refused to pay for countries that broke EU rules and they are viewed as a traitors now.