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Global Warming - distance between America and Europe is steadily increasing.
by Oui on Thu May 21st, 2020 at 02:58:29 PM EST
[ Parent ]
It's time to choose what kind of EU we want for the 21st Century"

One without Germany perhaps. Or is that a denkverbot?

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Fri May 22nd, 2020 at 04:23:56 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Best choice the six founding members with a few democracies - if there are any in former dictatorships and the countries in New Europe. The latter  countries prefer to be weaponized by the only Superpower (Trump&Co) and become a separate US of E. These states will be a nice buffer zone for Western Europe. Ask NSC advisor to Joe Biden - Tony Blinken. Will save Brussels a lot of subsidies/funding corruption.

Global Warming - distance between America and Europe is steadily increasing.
by Oui on Fri May 22nd, 2020 at 05:31:53 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The original six include Germany, so that is no solution. Yet France is wedded to the idea of an alliance with Germany. From Mundell's perspective of an optimal currency area France, Italy, Spain, Portugal, Belgum, Greece and the Mediterranean island states would make an optimal currency area. As would Netherlands, Germany, Austria, Denmark and Finland.

But establishing two such currency areas would disrupt an existing dynamic of the northern states feasting off of the misery of the southern states while benefiting in trade with the rest of the world by having the value of the Euro depressed by the southern states. So it is unlikely to be accepted by the northern states. And France is one bridge between Iberia and Italy with the Mediterranean being the other and the bridge between Greece and the island states as well. I do not know if it is possible for such a southern union to form without France.  
 

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

by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Tue May 26th, 2020 at 05:36:13 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The folly or, perhaps, the 'mindblock'/'denkverbot' of the existing arrangement is the idea that the southern states BENIFIT from the strength that Germany's Deutchmark brought to the Euro when it joined. My view is that this is anything but a benefit.


"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Tue May 26th, 2020 at 05:40:18 PM EST
[ Parent ]
At the beginning Italy was able to borrow at cheaper rates than with the lira, so took advantage of that (to its eternal detriment) as it was misspent on bridges to nowhere, pharaonic nothingburgers which fattened 'certain' pockets but brought zero-to-few benefits to the average Joe, who suddenly had to pay double for coffee at the bar and navigate new roundabouts sometimes every hundred metres (while viaducts and bridges were woefully under-maintained and millions allocated by the EU went unspent because no-one could organise how 'best' -hint, hint- to do it).
To a great degree Italian malfeasance turned the Euro into the poisoned chalice it became, and helped form the negative image now used as cudgel by the 'frugal' nations.
 

'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 Sat May 30th, 2020 at 12:43:01 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Berlusconi was in charge much of that time, no?


"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Sun May 31st, 2020 at 06:35:18 PM EST
[ Parent ]
For France it is the Franco-German alliance. All else is optional.

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Fri May 22nd, 2020 at 05:41:47 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Au contraire, the Franco-German axis is merely the springboard from which all major initiatives in Europe tend to start and develop. At least that's Macron's view, but he's not alone in this; his predecessors were much the same and many French pols share the same view.

EU history also tends to follow that narrative: the big countries agree on something and the other EU countries are brought on board later on. Not the most democratic process, but this is how it has worked many times.

Besides France and Germany, there used to be another country with a population over 60 millions and a GDP in the top 5 WW, but it seems to have drifted away.

by Bernard on Fri May 22nd, 2020 at 08:15:51 PM EST
[ Parent ]
It was never the most reliable of allies...

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Fri May 22nd, 2020 at 10:32:42 PM EST
[ Parent ]
France's dedication to Germany is what is preventing a realignment - unless Germany leaves the EuroZone unilaterally. This doubtless springs from the trauma of France being defeated in two world wars. But how likely is it that a breakup with Germany leaving the EuroZone would lead to a war today. Germany cannot even bring itself to fund its military adequately.


"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Sun May 24th, 2020 at 12:33:00 AM EST
[ Parent ]

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