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From the Article in Die Zeit promoting the Modest Proposal (13 May 2011)
Last Friday, Der Spiegel published a story that "Athens is considering withdrawing from the euro zone" and, moreover, that a meeting was being held in Luxemburg on that afternoon to discuss the matter. After fast and furious denials, red-faced officials soon confessed that a high level meeting was indeed taking place in Luxemburg, albeit with an agenda that did not contain an impending Greek exit from the eurozone. As for the Greek government itself, it did what it does reliably in the face of an inconvenient story: it blamed it on speculators and their journalist friends.

Der Spiegel is, of course, no instrument of speculators and it is rather disingenuous of the Greek government to imply otherwise. Having said that, it is also untrue that the Greek government considered withdrawing from the euro, despite the country's massive problems. So, the pressing question is: Why did Der Spiegel choose to suggest that a euro exit by Greece was on Mr Papandreou's (the Greek PM's) cards, even though its journalists knew full well that it was most definitely not?

The only answer that is consistent with Der Spiegel`s calibre, political connections and intelligence is that the good magazine, in consultation with certain circles within the German government (in particular the Finance Ministry), was trying to send a message primarily to the German Chancellor but also to the Greek Prime Minister. What message? That it is time to begin the debate which Europe has been avoiding for more than a year. A debate about the need to stop living in the collective illusion that the eurozone's present course is sustainable.

Wishful thinking, maybe?

Economics is politics by other means
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Sat Jun 18th, 2011 at 02:51:25 AM EST
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by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Sat Jun 18th, 2011 at 08:44:20 AM EST
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