‘Eurocrats live in an estranged bubble’

Bruno Waterfield answers your questions on EU mandarins, SYRIZA’s disgrace, Germany-bashing and more.

Bruno Waterfield

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Anti-EU opposition seems pretty lame and backward. Why is this?
Kieran Hunter, Essex

Anti-EU sentiment is increasingly a flight from reality, a big bad bully to blame for your problems and an alibi for decline: ‘It is the EU/Angela Merkel’s fault, not mine.’ Whether the Eurozone crisis is the terminal moment of capitalism or not (I don’t think so), the so-called left, usually the same ghastly, zombie Social Democrats we know so well, are firmly in the flight-from-reality camp. Francois Hollande, for instance, promised French voters a more comfortable, conservative vision of the world where la belle France could just carry on as before with AAA credit and no (painful) restructuring. His sleight of hand, labelling the same Eurozone monetarist medicine ‘growth’ rather than ‘austerity’, is unlikely to convince people for very long. Elsewhere, SYRIZA are a disgrace. This bunch of liars told Greeks that the Euro was a jolly club of equals, unfortunately distorted, but only temporarily, by the evil Merkel. With Hollande in power in France, so the fable went, Greeks could escape austerity and stay in the Euro, with all that cheap credit back on tap. In other words, nothing need really change. This was a very destructive lie at a time when Greece needed (as it does now) to grasp the nettle and leave the Euro…

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