Israel’s Interesting Election

So, Israel voted, Netanyahu and Likud stunned with a showing that was not great, but decidedly better than expected, and arguably better than last time (last time Likud and Yisrael Beiteinu formed a single list and got 31 seats, this time they got 32 between them running separately – 27 for Likud alone). Of course,…

Who Just Blinked? Hard to Say

So, Varoufakis finally met with the two people who really matter – ECB Chief Mario Draghi and German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schäuble – and to all outward appearances it blew up in his face. He left the meeting with Draghi in good spirits, telling everyone they’d had a meaningful converation, only for the ECB to…

Still Not (Yet) Radical

Further indication that calling Syriza "radical" before all the evidence is in is reckless: Varoufakis (the new Greek Finance Minister) has sworn to the German press that Greece will never again run a deficit – as in "never, never, never!" Alright, let’s get the two(-and-a-half) obvious objections out of the way. Varoufakis won’t be finance…

What do you mean, “Radical?”

Greece may be bigger news in Europe than it is here, but it’s big news. A lot of the future is being decided right now. One of the best articles about the larger political meaning of it that I’ve seen is Christopher Caldwell’s "The Flag-Waving Greek Left" in the Weekly Standard. The general theme is…

Why They’ll Blink

As usual, the international media prefers panic to calm. Therefore, most analyses of the Greek situation you read openly speculate about Greece leaving (or being forced to leave) the Euro. It’s not that it’s completely out of the question; there’s a real danger to be sure. But my money (not literally, though – at least…

Germany’s Fault: Now More Than Ever

A sentence about the situation in Greece, since it’s Kind of a Big Deal: it continues to be mostly Germany’s fault. I am the last person to defend Greece’s "economic" model. Borrow money cheap, lie about how much you’ve borrowed, spend it on unproductive things and allow people to massively cheat on their taxes is…

Federal Republic of Britain

Chris Bertram has an interesting post on Crooked Timber called Eine Bundesrepublik Britannien? speculating that the push for Scottish secession is symptomatic of structural problems in the UK. I agree. His proposed solution – and, to be fair, it’s only a “what do you think of this?” suggestion – is to make a kind of…

Free Banking With or Without Scotland

With polls shockingly close ahead of next week’s referendum on Scottish independence, the Adam Smith Institute has an interesting piece up called How Scotland could flourish by unilaterally keeping the pound. Read it for yourself, of course, but the condensed argument is that it would do it by instituting a modern version of the free…