Europe’s migrant crisis, the continent’s greatest humanitarian disaster since the aftermath of World War II, continues to worsen. The summer began with mass drownings in the Mediterranean and bickering between the European Union and the governments of its member states over who should foot the bill for search and rescue patrols of Europe’s southern coasts. The summer is ending with a series of appalling images that have galvanized public opinion, especially in the northern European states, and forced both national and supranational authorities to act.Read more
Is America, or Illinois, or Chicago the next Greece? The answers are “Yes, if . . . ,” “No, but . . . ,” and “Perhaps.” Greece joined what was then the European Economic Community even though it had no business applying for admission, and the existing members had no business allowing it entry, as the community’s finance ministers concluded, only to be overruled by France and Germany, whose leaders were hoping to construct an institution that would make another continental conflagration impossible: Full speed ahead, economics be damned.Read more
A mass outbreak of syphilis, the radical economist and member of parliament Costas Lapavitsas told an interviewer, is about the only thing the European political establishment did not threaten Greece’s voters with before the country’s early-July referendum.Read more
The vote in Greece is running 60 percent “No” on the terms of its creditors. The same experts who had been predicting a close vote will now explain why it was a runaway in favor of … well, who knows. But count on the usual confident voices to sort it all out.Read more
One reads of the crisis in Greece. And the one much closer to home in Puerto Rico. The crisis, that is, that inevitably comes after spending too much and taking on more debt than it is possible even to service, much less pay down. One thinks of how unfortunate it is for the people who will now redeem with pain, the promises made by the politicians of previous generations.Read more
We have been hearing, for so long now, that the end is nigh in the crisis of the Greek economy that it is hard to take another such warning seriously. The problem of Greece, like so many others, seems to have no end, no resolution and, even, no point. Unless, that is, you are a citizen of Greece. Then it is your life.Read more
In Athens in mid-January, two weeks before the election that would make 40-year-old engineer Alexis Tsipras Greece’s new prime minister, a bunch of cleaning ladies explained to me why they planned to vote for his party, the Coalition of the Radical Left (Syriza, for its Greek acronym). We met where they had lived, at least part of the time, for the past 16 months: among tents on the sidewalk in front of the economics ministry in downtown Athens.Read more
Not that long ago, the world’s central bankers rushed to rescue a small nation with a colorful history and a very troubled economy. How everything, but everything, came to depend on the survival of Greece’s economy was never quite clear but the crisis went away.Read more
A chart from the Republican side of the Senate Budget Committee shows that "U.S. Per Person Debt [Is] Now 35 Percent Higher than that of Greece."Read more
September 12 was a momentous day for Europe. It saw three separate events that in a powerful way may come to remake the European Union. First, Germany’s Constitutional Court ruled that the nation’s parliament can ratify a new, permanent rescue fund for the eurozone, called the European Stability Mechanism, to the tune of some $645 billion in taxpayer money. The European Union would have been forced into an immediate financial crisis of unprecedented magnitude had the court declared the bailout illegal.Read more
Steve Hayes, with Rick Klein and Charles Krauthammer, last night on Fox News:Read more
Debtors of the world, unite—you have nothing to lose but your IOUs!
That seems to be what the Greeks are discovering—that they have less to lose by default, with all of its consequences, than by trying to be Germans.Read more
The tide sweeping from Greece across Europe and into the United States is washing away support for austerity, in some cases reinforcing opposition to it, largely from the left. President Obama is delighted at this support for his refusal to cut spending in the face of mounting deficits, and the Republicans are feeling beleaguered at what they see as the disinterment of the body of works of John Maynard Keynes.Read more
The Republican Senate Budget Committee will release this new chart later today, showing that the "U.S. Spends More Per Person Than Portugal, Italy, Greece, Or Spain."Read more
The Republican side of the Senate Budget Committee will release this chart later today, clearly showing that America's debt is greater than the combined debt of the entire Eurozone and the U.K.:Read more
There are good days and bad days, but even on the good days the abyss is never too far away. The eurozone’s dangerously original mix of innovation, incoherence, and unaccountability makes it difficult to identify a single event that could finally push it over the edge. But, with confidence already shot, there is one obvious contender, a series of old-fashioned bank runs given a brutal new twist by the logic of currency union as cash pours out of the stricken banks and the country (or countries) that hosts them.Read more
Joel Gehrke: "3,000 more six-figure pensions in Calif."Read more
Financial Times: "Greece approves austerity bill on first reading"Read more
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