Spain was not a profligate spender

This is typical:

As Harvard economist Ken Rogoff puts it, “Europe is like a couple that wasn’t  sure they wanted to get married, so instead they decided to just open a joint  checking account and see how things went.” They went badly. Germany, the thrifty  partner, is wringing its hands about how to handle the fact that its  Mediterranean lover has drained the account and doesn’t want to go on a budget.  The southern European attitude is pretty well summed up in Gaga’s lyric “I want  your everything as long as it’s free.”

The Germans are also taking heat for insisting that debtor nations like Greece  submit to backbreaking austerity budgets. But you can understand the German  point of view–why give a blank check to spendthrift nations like Greece when  you have no political control over how they spend it?

It’s never explicitly mentioned, but implied that Spain, Italy, and the other countries are having problems because they spent too much. It’s not true (if you search through Paul Krugman’s blog you’ll find much more evidence, but since I’m lazy I’ll just put in this one):

For this is really, really not about fiscal irresponsibility. Just as a reminder, on the eve of the crisis Spain seemed to be a fiscal paragon:

What happened to Spain was a housing bubble — fueled, to an important degree, by lending from German banks — that burst, taking the economy down with it. Now the country has 23.6 percent unemployment, 50.5 percent among the young.

It would be nice if reporters actually reported what was true.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: