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February 11, 2012

Here is an article by Simon Tilford who is chief economist at the Centre for European Reform. It’s a fine example of using a few numbers to clarify a political issue. With the French election on the horizon, President Sarkozy is telling the French people they need to be more like the Germans.

So much of what is happening in Europe provides a painful lesson in the way the educated mind can think up elaborate theories and excuses to get what it wants, even though the “thinkers” and leaders are faced with a mountain-chain of evidence to get round. Witness the abject failure of “expansionary contraction” or “austerity.” At which point I will just refer to the blogs of Paul Krugman, Jared Bernstein, Brad DeLong, or Social Europe, and the many mountaineers who know what they are doing, or more specifically, this article by Vicente Navarro.

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