Dear Reader,

I wanted to take this opportunity to wish you a merry Christmas and a happy new year. I won’t be posting any more this year, as I have some work I need to finish before going on holidays. During the new year, I hope to be able to continue to post at least once a week, hopefully on Fridays, but later otherwise.

I have plenty of posts I’ve started writing that need finishing as well as plenty of ideas for new posts I hope you will find as interesting as I do.

Europe and its integration remain in flux in the depressing economic and political aftermath of the financial crisis. Extremist right-wing parties seem to go from strength to strength casting a shadow not dissimilar to that cast in the 1930s when the liberal central parties seem to have lost the confidence of the electorates across Europe. Things are not quite as bad as then, but the Europe we live in now seems rather different from the one we lived in 10 years ago and our “new normal” is clearly more depressing than our past.

Nevertheless, much remains to be done. Will the deflation and economic inequalities that plague our continent, the fiscal competition of the single market, the continued exposure to asymmetric shocks and Russian triggers of a military threat push us towards more European integration in 2015? Or a British exit from the EU, civil war in Spain, more instability or even a default in Greece, failure in France and reform delay at continental level create continue to accumulate until discontent reaches a critical mass that it will be impossible to not breakup with the past?

I don’t know either. So hang around and let’s find out!

See you next year!


Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

3 Accounts of Euro-Zone Crisis Management

If you are interested in EU integration and if you’ve been following the Euro-Zone crisis for the last 5 years, then last  week would have definitely registered the publication of the following blog post by Peter Spiegel on the FT’s Brussels Blog: “Draghi’s ECB management: the leaked Geithner files

Continue reading

Posted in A € for your Thoughts, ECB, European History, European Integration, European National Politics, Finance, Media Coverage, Sovereign debt Crisis, Visions of the Political Future of Europe | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Italian Debt, Mutual Insurance, Fiscal Federalism and Fiscal Rules – Brugel blog posts

As I mentioned earlier, in a very delayed reaction to a comment on European blogging, I’ve decided to start looking around at what other bloggers write and comment on it, while hopefully not neglecting to come up with my own content.

Because the inspiration for this new attitude came from Bruegel, I think it is only fair to begin by considering contributions published there, particularly those from Jérémie Cohen-Setton, Martin Kessler and Shahin Vallée, who authored that article. Unfortunately, only Vallee has published a relevant post lately, so I shall focus on him and 2 other authors published by Bruegel’s blog.

In this spirit I looked around for the latest contributions and found the following three articles

Continue reading

Posted in A € for your Thoughts | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Looking around

Two and a half years ago now, more or less, Bruegel published an interesting and inaugural blog post by Jérémie Cohen-Setton, Martin Kessler and Shahin Vallée titled “Europeans can’t blog”. Following a post from , their point was that European bloggers

“use hyperlinks far less than their American counterparts or do it and in a way that doesn’t create two-way debate. In brief, Europe has bloggers, but no blogosphere: it lacks a living ecosystem to exchange and debate.”

Moreover, the Bruegel authors argued that

  • Most blogs remain targetted at a national rather than European audience.
  • Europeans don’t have a debating culture. Most blogs disseminate information, rather than engage in debate.

At the time I was honestly very flattered because this blog was mentioned among many other illustrious names, but ultimately I have to agree with the points of those authors.

So in their spirit, and because I am keen to engage in more debate and publish more regularly, I will try to write more debating posts, commenting on or suggesting comments to other bloggers. Not only is it interactive and engaging, which is a good idea but it also makes my life easier, which is a welcomed development. Also it forces me to read what other European bloggers are writing about, which honestly I’ve fallen out of the habit of doing. Finally, it gives me an excuse to revive the short-lived “A € for your thoughts” category, which I haven’t used in ages.

So that’s it. Nothing more for now. But I guess you know what to expect from me this Friday.

Until then,


Posted in A € for your Thoughts | Leave a comment

Oh! …and this started happening 25 years ago

The Fall of the Berlin Wall!

Here’s a nice video with the images I remember, even though my family had not relocated to France at the time yet. Memory can play funny tricks on you. I think I remember it because they brought them back during a report on the end of the Soviet Union.

Posted in European History, European Integration | Tagged , , | Leave a comment