The End of Europe

In his Mémoires d’Espoir, the leader of Free France during World War II and the founder of the Fifth Republic, General Charles de Gaulle, wrote at length about a subject on many people’s minds today—Europe. Though often portrayed as passionately French to the point of incorrigibility, de Gaulle was, in his own way, quintessentially European. For [...]

“Talibans of Austerity”

A sentence in the French newspaper Le Monde recently caught my eye: Il y aura toujours des talibans de l’austérité, there will always be the Talibans of austerity. It was uttered by the economist Jean Pisani-Ferry in an interview in the newspaper about the crisis in the Euro zone, and it made me think at [...]

Britain, “Austerity,” and the Lessons of Economic History

Economists and pundits alike are going wild over the United Kingdom’s recent “double dip” recession. The 2008-09 recession prompted the election of a conservative coalition led by Prime Minister David Cameron. Cameron decided the best path for economic recovery was “austerity,” a program of reduced government spending and smaller government debt. The new coalition—with the [...]

Greek Youth Getting Back to Basics

A couple of weeks ago a retired Greek pharmacist shot himself outside the country’s parliament in protest at austerity measures that include major cuts to pensions. But alongside this story of despairing protest comes news of youths who are adapting to their country’s plight by getting back to basics. Applications to the American Farm School [...]