Tuesday, August 20, 2013

"We should save Europe, not the Euro!"

This is a most remarkable interview with Kai A. Konrad! Remarkable for two reasons: (1) the person who is being interviewed and (2) what he says publicly!

Mr. Konrad (whom I have never heard of before) is being called a 'Senior Advisor to Finance Minister Schäuble' by the newspaper. He is a Director of the highly renowned Max-Planck-Institut as well as the head of something called the 'Scientific Counsel to the Finance Ministry'. In short, he is not just anybody.

This is the first time that anyone close the Germany's officialdom breaks the taboo of not ever calling into question whether the present Euro-structure can be maintained. In fact, his line of argument is quite similar to that of the very provocative Hans-Olaf Henkel in his latest book "The Euro-Liars" and which I have written about here and here.

Mr. Konrad has given up the belief that the Euro-structure can/will continue in its present form. Thus, he feels certain that there will be a full and/or partial break-up in one form or another. His suggestion is that the periphery countries should get together and pressure Germany & Co. to leave the Euro.

I get the clear sense that a defeatist attitude about the Euro-structure in its present form is gathering steam!


  1. Klaus, your clear sense might be influenced by your recent change of firm convictions...

    H. Trickler

  2. Hans-Olaf Henkel views herr Klaus does not count the German perception of loosing in a way some part of the power gained all these years. And i mean not financial influence but political power of influence. The Germans are ready to accept a defeat? A europe with many different currencies or even 2-3 would be a very unstable europe politically a multi-speed Europe (disintegrated for my point) a europe that the UK would accept as ideal. Can that Europe be a vital part of German interests especially taking into account further rearrangements in geopolitics?
    I have said it to that blog again geography has a number one role in some regions and the economy follows.
    A euro of south and north would be an oppurtunity for Italy and mainly France to broaden their status in all region.


  3. Kai Konrad said similar things in this Die Welt interview in April Government adviser sees euro-end in five years.

    It was quoted in Daily Telegraph, Capital Greece etc.

    Here is a 2011 interview with Konrad on Swiss TV in English, in which he argues that Greek debt should have been restructured.


  4. Klaus: whenever I come across the name of an economist that I have never heard of, the first thing I do is look up publications. This guy has plenty of neoclassical articles in American journals -- all of rabid neoclassical orientation.

    In other words, he has nothing to say. He is just one of those neoliberal economists without vision, without strong intellect, and he is shaping the EU (thanks, Herr Schauble for your incompetence).

  5. Kai Konrad ist Mitverfasser eines Buches "Schulden ohne Sühne? Was Europas Krise uns Bürger kostet".
    Auszüge hier: http://www.welt.de/wirtschaft/article107254528/EU-Staaten-muessen-zurueck-auf-Los-gehen.html
    Interessant sind die Hinweise darauf, wie ein findiger Staat ein Schuldenlimit über lange Zeit aushebeln bzw. verschleiern kann.

    Frage an den Blogmeister: Passiert so etwas momentan auch bezüglich des griechischen Primärüberschusses? Werden da etwa massiv staatliche Zahlungen verzögert oder ausgelagert, um einen Primärüberschuss vorzutäuschen, der bei korrekter Buchführung gar nicht vorhanden wäre?

    1. Ich glaube nicht, dass ein Aussenstehender diese Frage umfassend beantworten kann. Ich hänge einen Link an, wo jemand, der sich mit griechischen Ziffern sehr gut auskennt, zum Ergebnis kommt, dass der verkündete Primärüberschuss in Wirklichkeit ein Primärdefizit ist. Mehr kann ich dazu nicht sagen.