Whenever Europe can't make its mind up the United States is called in, Fernando Sobral complains in the business paper Jornal de Negócios:
"Europeans are always criticising how culturally backwards the US is, but when the moment of truth arrives they adore Uncle Sam. ...
Now the time has come to ask for help, however it's not General Custer's cavalry we need but some of those B52 bombers to drop dollar parcels on Europe. A Europe that is unable to persuade the ECB to fork out the money it needs. The Fed has no qualms like puritanical Europe. ... It puts money into circulation without getting nightmares about inflation. The fed has the 'hard power' the ECB lacks. The ECB is increasingly a bank with plastic money, that can be moulded to suit Germany's wishes.
Those who say Germany's hands are tied because of its constitution should bear in mind that when Helmut Kohl pushed ahead with German reunification he didn't spend too much time looking at the accounts. His political impetus carried the economy along with it. Europe is different: it's afraid of its own shadow and still dancing on a volcano."
- Fernando Sobral, writing in Jornal de Negócios (Portugal)
Their problems stem largely from the problem of imagining what the state can do to compensate for a population that largely prefers to try a to see how little it can do to get more out of society than it puts into it. The effect of wanting the state to tend to all and sundry, whether they have any need or not, has been that despite seizing half the GNP in an array of tax streams governments needed to borrow unsustainable amounts of money to serve it’s constituencies: the public sector feeding off of the population, and a large portion of the population expecting too much from others (whom they imagine can afford it and don’t mind.)
Now, through the IMF they seek more resources for their palliative care from abroad, in particular from a United States that has its’ own garden to tend right now. America’s only motivation to play along is to try and stop the chill on the neck of the global economy (and thus her own) caused by #Europe’s entrenched begging masses in need of more government cheese.
Arrogantly, they assume that they can actually call in that air strike. Expect complaints at the terms for having the slightest doubts in their ability to make good, and carping about what little will be asked for in return.