Category: Comments

Hollande’s Tax Rebels Underscore Mounting Opposition

Hollande is caught between a rock and a hard place.  The rock is the European Commission, which has been pushing him  to reduce deficits significantly.  Having been given a two year extension on the rules that demand a 3% deficit or lower, Hollande has to find the money.  The easiest way to do that, and […]

Austerity Seen Easing With Change to EU Budget Policy?

Vivien Schmidt’s comment on Mathew Dalton’s September 19 Wall Street Journal article, “Austerity Seen Easing with Change to EU Budget Policy,” was picked up by AP reporter Juergen Baetz. Comment and links to both articles below. Easing austerity through change to EU budget policy is a very significant move.  If agreed by EU finance officials, […]

Vivien Schmidt quoted in Harvard Political Review

Vivien Schmidt was quoted recently in the Harvard Political Review in article by Krister Koskelo entitled “Europe: Between Technocracy and Democracy.”

Comment on the Greek crisis and EU leaders meeting

It is amazing how blind the EU leaders (German Chancellor, ECB, and some in the EU Commission) are to the political dangers involved in trying to force Greece to implement economic cuts that are bound to fail, that have already failed, and that will plunge the country deeper into misery….and anarchy!  What EU leaders need […]

Comment on French elections

The presidential elections in France, the legislative elections in Greece, and the regional elections in Germany together mark a turning point for the EU. The results make clear that, despite their differences, European voters all share a common view that current leaders are not delivering. In France and Greece, voters want an end to unending […]

L’élection présidentielle française: une élection cruciale pour l’Europe

Here’s a comment I co-authored with Maxime Lefebvre for Le Monde online (in French).

Partial EU Pact Reached

There’s a joke told about Gorbachev who, when asked to say one word about the state of the Soviet economy responded: GOOD. When asked for two words: NOT GOOD. The same could be said about the agreement reached Friday. The agreement is good in that the pact on fiscal union gives the ECB what it […]

France and Germany Push Deal

The fiscal union that German Chancellor Merkel has been pushing is a side show to the real game, but a necessary one.  It gives the ECB an excuse to act as a lender of last resort, to stop the market pressure on Italy and Spain and contagion to France.  It also keeps German voters and […]

Merkel Warns Crisis Will Last

Merkel’s modus vivendi has always been to go slowly, to wear her opposition out, and to wait. This strategy, which enabled her to become Chancellor, will be her undoing.  The markets don’t wait.  Treaty reform and even the idea of deeper fiscal union are sideshows to the real event.  Unless Merkel agrees to the ECB […]

Europe’s Leaders Pursue New Pact

Agreement on a fiscal pact that brings deeper economic integration by making budget discipline legally binding and enforceable by European authorities is a welcome move, so long as the European Central Bank takes the next move: to become a lender of last resort. But even it were to do so, and in so doing solve […]