I was lucky tonight. He had a gun, but I had a tire iron.—Phillip Marlowe, 1958
I woke up in Munich with a headache this morning to see an alarming item in the Financial Times, reproduced below. The FT is not part of the underground press. It’s mainstream. Looks like Germany, and hence Europe, and hence the world, is in real trouble. Economic trouble due to Russia’s fisticuffs with Ukraine. Once again, I must say, “Thank you, Washington!”
Never, ever, for one moment forget the immortal words of Victoria Nuland in 2014, ”Fuck the EU!” Washington’s top policy-maker for Europe and chief hands-on architect of the Ukraine fiasco was making an important point.
Did the numskulls in charge of the EU and Germany listen and take heed? No. They continued to dance to the tune blasting from Washington. Hence, the present slow-motion train wreck for Germany, Europe, and the world.
My headache this morning may have been caused by Paul Krugman yesterday. He’s part of the tag-team wise-man duo of the NY Times, the other being the all-knowing Tom Friedman. Krugman wrote yesterday about the recent Euro-Dollar rough parity. The Euro has been falling like a stone.
Krugman, current or ex-professor of economics from Princeton, takes what seemed like forever to explain why—“the meaning of the plunging euro”— before coming to the point. It’s not the surge in interest rates by the FED to fight runaway inflation. No, the central reason is, “…a major downward revision of investors’ views of European competitiveness, and hence of the perceived long-run sustainable value of Europe’s currency.”
And why is that, pray tell? “….over the past couple of decades Europe—especially Germany, the core of the Continent’s economy—has tried to build prosperity on two pillars: cheap natural gas from Russia and, to a lesser extent, exports of manufactured goods to China.” Oh, the horror!
I think it’s called “globalism” or free-enterprise or just taking care of business or whatever. Nothing inherently wrong with that. But now, wait for it, according to Krugman, “…One of these pillars is completely gone thanks to Vladimir Putin’s bungled invasion of Ukraine.” Ah, yes, it’s Putin’s fault! Of course. That “bungled invasion”.
Wrong. It’s not the fault of Putin. Rather it is Germany’s and the EU’s response to Putin, prior to and now in the aftermath of, the Russo-Ukraine war which is at fault. The EU and Berlin took their knee-jerk cue, as always, from the mischief-makers in Washington.
You wanna sanction Russia? You wanna cut off your nose despite your face? You wanna engage in yet another messianic crusade to nowhere? Be my guest. But if you do that, dear crusaders, there will be consequences.
As the German, Jorg Rothermel, says in the FT article, “There is now a danger that we won’t be able to produce certain thing in Germany any more.” To put it crudely, in the words of the unspeakable Nuland, “Fuck the EU!”
When will the Europeans wake up?