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why isn't this front page on the national press of all euro nations?

how short the public's memory! how clueless the choice of institutional solutions till now...

'The history of public debt is full of irony. It rarely follows our ideas of order and justice.' Thomas Piketty

by melo (melometa4(at)gmail.com) on Sun Sep 25th, 2011 at 07:36:54 AM EST
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Oh, but it has been all over the place:

Comment is Free: Germany owes Greece a debt: Germany's ducking of the war reparations issue makes its attitude to the current Greek debt crisis somewhat hypocritical (Albrecht Ritschl, 21 June 2011)

What is truly strange, however, is the brevity of Germany's collective memory. For during much of the 20th century, the situation was radically different: after the first world war and again after the second world war, Germany was the world's largest debtor, and in both cases owed its economic recovery to large-scale debt relief.

...

Having footed the resulting massive bill, after the second world war the Americans imposed the London debt agreement of 1953 on their allies, an exercise in debt forgiveness to Germany on the most generous terms. West Germany's economic miracle, the stability of the deutschmark and the favourable state of its public finances were all owed to this massive haircut. But it put Germany's creditors at a disadvantage, leaving it to them to cope with the financial aftermath of the German occupation.

...

It may or may not have been wise to put the issue of reparations and other unsettled claims on Germany to rest after 1990. Back then, the Germans argued that any plausible bill would exceed the country's resources, and that continued financial co-operation in Europe instead would be infinitely more preferable. They may have had a point. But now is the time for Germany to deliver on the promise, act wisely and keep the bull away from the china shop.



Economics is politics by other means
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Sun Sep 25th, 2011 at 09:10:55 AM EST
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