[lit-ideas] Germany can't make Germans out of us

  • From: "Lawrence Helm" <lawrencehelm@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: "Lit-Ideas " <Lit-Ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Sat, 19 May 2012 15:59:00 -0700

http://www.irishexaminer.com/opinion/columnists/matt-cooper/germany-cant-mak
e-germans-out-of-us-because-of-euro-crisis-194246.html

 

This from the Matt Cooper of the Irish Examiner:  "Germany is behaving like
the euro is a pain in the ass to it, that it has received little or no
reward for adopting it as its currency, that it wishes that it never gave up
its Deutschmark as its own prized currency and that, now that it is stuck
with the euro, it will be damned if it is going to pick up the tab for the
fecklessness of other European nations (including us)."

 

Cooper presents his analysis of Germany's economic history and summarizes,
"So it is complex and multi-faceted.  It is easy to see why the German
public does not want to foot the bill for the euro going wrong.  But let's
not forget how much the euro has contributed to the existing great wealth in
that country."

 

I can't see Germans responding favorable to that argument.  Here I am, not a
German, but nicely retired after 39 years in aerospace.  Suppose Governor
Brown and President Obama were to hit me with huge taxes.  Suppose I
complained and received the response, "don't forget, Helm, you got through
college on a government sponsored G.I.Bill.  You then worked for most of
your 39 years making aircraft for the U.S. government.  You benefited from
all that government support in your earlier days; so suck it up, Helm, and
shell out."  Is that a valid argument all ye logicians?  I don't think so
and here is why:  The European environment presented Germany with the
prospect, "perform in certain ways and receive benefits accordingly."  Now
the EU (at least Ireland) is reneging.  They are attempting to retroactively
say to Germany, "perform in certain ways and receive benefits accordingly
unless we get in financial trouble and then we will need some of your
money."  

 

Germany is in a better situation than I am.  The EU can't force them to
cough their money up, but the state of California and the Federal Government
can arrest me if I don't mine.  On the other hand there is a vast history of
individuals being taxed more and more by governments who decide they need
more and more money; so I shouldn't complain.  Here, come take my money.
I'm used to it.  But will Germany see it the same as I do?

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