Germany is in a bind. It is an industrial powerhouse, the richest economy in Europe, but it must prop up several poor-performing economies throughout the rest of the European Union. Berlin cannot continue this practice lest they drag it down with them. David Grabbe warns that Germany's decisions on these matters could have far-reaching consequences for Europe and the rest of the world.
It only takes one nation to reject a European Union treaty, even one as significant as the recent Lisbon Treaty. Ireland's referendum stopped this latest attempt to create a European state in its tracks. David Grabbe considers how likely a federal Europe is in light of present political and demographic trends.
Charles Whitaker: Today, the prospect of lengthening life expectancies appear more fantasy than possibility. "[A]ll five former Soviet Central Asian republics began the year 2000 with distinctly lower life expectancies that they enjoyed in 1990—all this in peacetime and in the absence of any obvious political catastrophe." In the old Soviet Union, it is even worse. ...
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