For those readers who think Roman Catholics' belief in transubstantiation is foolish (human sacrifice, eating God, etc.), you ought to take a look at what Dr. Krugman is cramming down his cultists' throats.
You see, Dr. Krugman looks at the mess in Europe and blames not the profligate Greeks, but the fiscally responsible Germans. That's right. Dr. Krugman has metaphorically wandered into the Penn State locker room, found Coach Sandusky brutalizing a child and deduced that the child rape victim is to blame.
'Puter is without much time, but he must point out the gaping holes in Dr. Krugman's logic.
Dr. Krugman: "The Greeks aren’t lazy — on the contrary, they work longer hours than almost anyone else in Europe, and much longer hours than the Germans in particular."Dr. Krugman is one of two people.
'Puter: It's equally plausible that the reason Greeks work longer hours than Germans is because Greeks are less productive than Germans. If I can finish a job in two hours that takes someone else eight hours, that's a flaw, according to Dr. Krugman.
Dr. Krugman: "Then Greece joined the euro, and a terrible thing happened: people started believing that it was a safe place to invest. Foreign money poured into Greece, some but not all of it financing government deficits; the economy boomed; inflation rose; and Greece became increasingly uncompetitive. To be sure, the Greeks squandered much if not most of the money that came flooding in, but then so did everyone else who got caught up in the euro bubble."
'Puter: Let's rewrite Dr. Krugman this way: "Then Greece joined the euro, and a terrible thing happened: people started believing that [the Euro was doomed to failure and only the United States] was a safe place to invest. Foreign money poured into [the United States], some but not all of it financing government deficits; the economy boomed; inflation rose; and the [United States] became increasingly uncompetitive. To be sure, the [United States] squandered much if not most of the money that came flooding in, but then so did everyone else who got caught up in the [insert random, undefined irrationally exuberant bubble name here] bubble." There, fixed.
Dr. Krugman: "Ask yourself, why does the dollar area — also known as the United States of America — more or less work, without the kind of severe regional crises now afflicting Europe? The answer is that we have a strong central government, and the activities of this government in effect provide automatic bailouts to states that get in trouble."
'Puter: Okey dokey, Professor. How about "The United States is a voluntary association of people with similar beliefs, values and aspirations, if not cultures, dedicated to a common purpose. The Euro Zone is a make-believe fairy tale of dissimilar and conflicting values, language and cultures created by navel-gazing Lotus Eaters with no grasp of current reality or historical events." 'Puter thinks his answer is better.
Dr. Krugman: "Consider, for example, what would be happening to Florida right now, in the aftermath of its huge housing bubble, if the state had to come up with the money for Social Security and Medicare out of its own suddenly reduced revenues. Luckily for Florida, Washington rather than Tallahassee is picking up the tab, which means that Florida is in effect receiving a bailout on a scale no European nation could dream of."
'Puter: Um, Dr. Krugman? You know that Florida is a one of fifty states comprising a nation, each of which states is subject to a centralized federal government, right? And you get that Greece is a sovereign nation, not a region or state within a nation, free to ignore extraterritorial laws and regulations, right?
So the proper example is "What if the United States entered into a really stupid voluntary international compact, realized the compact was bankrupting it and its people, then demanded a completely separate nation and its people support it in perpetuity?" 'Puter's guessing Canada would tell the United States to "Take off, eh?" And rightly so. And that's what the Germans are saying to the Greeks. As a matter of fact, the Germans would beenfit from tanking the European Monetary Union and returning to the Deutsche mark. From day one, the Deutsche mark would be the strongest currency in mainland Europe. The European Union (and 'Puter's unlikely United States-Canada scenario) is not a sovereign national government ruling over a state (e.g., United States and Florida). The Greeks are within their rights to tell Brussels/Frankfurt/Berlin to pound sand, but the Greeks must bear the consequences.
And your Social Security analogy is screwed up. If Florida were a nation as Greece is, Florida could simply tell the United States to take its Social Security laws, spindle it tightly and shove it where the sun don't shine. Just like the Greeks are telling the Eurocrats to do with their austerity plan. 'Puter's analysis doesn't judge Greece's actions, except as to say it is the right of a nation to ignore extraterritorial legal diktats, particularly when such diktats are the brain children of Euroweenie dreamers.
Choice one: Dr. Krugman is a person who is deliberately peddling lies and half truths to advance a political agenda that grants his favored party greater control over all areas of our lives.
Choice Two: Dr. Krugman is a person who is dumb enough to believe lies and half truths reported to him by others, a useful idiot of a political cadre committed to exercising greater control over all areas of our lives.
Choice one makes Dr. Krugman evil. Choice two makes Dr. Krugman stupid. For the sake of Dr. Krugman's immortal soul, 'Puter's hoping Dr. Krugman is just stupid.