Thursday, October 20, 2011


I posted this on Facebook earlier in response to a post from an old friend:
"Well, the crisis here in Europe may or may not be the result of Wall Street or other US actions, or even banks in both places. What it has become is more clear ant it is a Europe-wide self-analysis of all of the elements of the European Union. Everything about Europe is coming into question as the differences between north and south, for example or between west and the new members in the east become more important than ever. European versions of real estate crises, and market deflations combined with inflation, and the shock of sudden change forced by someone in Brussels or in some combination of France and Germany is just overwhelming millions of people in ways that are only suggested by what we see in the US. The Financial Times calculated that the Greek austerity plan – on average – is costing each household in Greece 14% of its income, double what the Irish are losing. Meanwhile there are dramatic differences between the French and German positions, and one hopes they get resolved before the G20 meeting near here in coming weeks. I think the chances of the EU staying together as it now is constituted are 50-50 at best. Leaders here are going to fall fast, I think, and what follows is anybody’s guess. President SARKOZY now (as of yesterday) polls 23% of the votes in next March’s presidential election, only 4% more than the extreme right candidate of the National Front. BERLUSCONI hangs on by a thin spaghetti strand, Ireland has already dumped its government, others are in flux, too. The only happy news here in a week has been the birth of a daughter – Julia - to SARKOZY and his wife, Carla BRUNI while he was trying to work out an agreement with MERKEL in Germany."

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