While the Washington Post today was busy recasting disgusting crassness, arrogance, and criminal incompetence as "wit," "brilliance," and "authenticity" in a political eulogy to Barney Frank--as well as trumpeting the stunning new statistic that every third woman in Atlanta has had an encounter with Herman Cain--they relegated news on Europe to a back-burner. Which is weird because the euro may be about to disintegrate. Even if--as European officials insist--the euro is here to stay, there is a real possibility of cataclysmic breakup of the EU, with dire consequences for Western economies. Specifically America, with its banks' exposure to European debt and the euro.
The pre-mortem post mortem:
1. It cannot be emphasized enough how much damage experimentation with bureaucratic visions of utopia during convenient economic times can do. When reckless bets on suicidal subprime loans sparked our financial crisis, our government and financial institutions were paying homage to cheap credit and the idea of the "ownership" society in which every American, no matter his credit, could "finance" his home. And of course this idea was allowed to poison our country because everything looked good as long as home prices were going up. Similarly, the reckless bet on suicidal subprime inductees(Greece, Spain, Italy...) into the euro looked great as long as everyone could borrow forever.
2. Globalist institutions and reckless "integration" into the world economy without adequate study of the domestic costs of globalization do not serve American interests. When we were the biggest lake in the ecosystem, but still isolated by land, we could absorb drought, shocks, and runoff. Now that channels have been dug between us and every other lake, the runoff is overwhelming. I understand that America has always been vulnerable to shifts in the world economy, but it seems like we have been punished over the past decade for not realizing two things about globalization. Attempting to reap benefits by turning a heap into a web is very difficult for those who are already at the top of the heap. And in the modern age, when economic entanglements and political entanglements are synonymous, "entangling alliances" are more deadly than even President Washington could possibly have imagined.