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What I can't fathom for the life of me is why Germans would cast this saga in moral and/or historical terms?

Germany should be focused on today, not the morals and ethics of the past.

by Upstate NY on Fri Dec 9th, 2011 at 05:23:10 PM EST
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...why Germans would cast this saga in moral and/or historical terms...

Because it is rhetorically effective, especially if the history invoked ends 55 years ago and the morality is based on a highly select and grossly oversimplified view of the world that is viewed from a post WW II German perspective. It is hard for politicians to go wrong telling 'the people' things they want to hear and hard to survive telling them what they need to hear. Ask Jimmy Carter. Just look at what US politicians have done since WW II. Which politicians have debunked US exceptionalism and triumphalism? What we have in Germany seems largely to be just a competitive exceptionalism and triumphalism, but comparably puerile.

Only nut cases like those of us who infest sites such as ET have any stomach for the darker side of the national histories of our countries. Sadly this is true for most nations. People only become critical of the actions of their own governments when they personally are repeatedly smashed by the visible consequences of those actions, and by then the victims are already marginalized. The mechanisms of cultural stasis are not particularly appealing viewing.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."

by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Fri Dec 9th, 2011 at 11:37:50 PM EST
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Because that's what politics is: it inhabits a narrative/mythological space and not a rational problem-solving space.

tens of millions of people stand to see their lives ruined because the bureaucrats at the ECB don't understand introductory economics -- Dean Baker
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Mon Dec 12th, 2011 at 09:23:52 AM EST
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