I have recently visited the United States and heard some learned people talk on the 2007 financial crisis vs. the more recent EU crisis. It has been an interesting to explore this subject while on this trip.
I was definitely taken by surprise when I heard that America’s crisis was only event driven (housing bubble and the two wars are the events referred here!) while the EU crisis was a classic debt problem! America’s problem can be solved easily. This, given the fact that US is still reeling under its problem of recession & unemployment and that it will take approximately 10 years to achieve 5% growth, was interesting to note!
Quoting from the Economist:
‘Americans nervously ridiculing Europeans who may profoundly influence their economic fortunes. One thing I do want to note is how the euro-zone crisis has changed the flavour of much American “oh, those silly Europeans” criticism—not so much Mr Drum’s, my colleague’s or Mr Krugman’s, but the kind of stuff you encounter in conversation. The standard critique used to be: “Oh, those silly Europeans, when will they overcome their separate working cultures, labour markets and fiscal policies and come together in one big monetary and economic union like we have in America?” Now, the critique has shifted to: “Oh, those silly Europeans, how could they have thought they would ever be able to overcome their separate working cultures, labour markets and fiscal policies and come together in one big monetary and economic union like we have in America?” Countries will obviously never stop finding ways to make fun of each other, but it’s interesting from an intellectual-history point of view to watch how the ridicule can shift polarity over time.’
-M.S. June 17th 2011
Should I call it sheer pride or competition?