Isn’t the euro such a great idea?

The argument in favour of the euro is that it will produce greater economic growth than not having it. So, what happened? The first time there was any major stress on the assembled economies, in 2006, the eurozone unemployment rate rose above the the all-EU one and stayed there.

Not really what was hoped for, is it?

12 thoughts on “Isn’t the euro such a great idea?”

  1. Flashback to 1998:

    The Director General of the Confederation of British Industry, Adair Turner, has told business leaders not to be swayed by “ill-informed scare stories” and consider the benefits of the European Monetary Union.
    Speaking at a CBI dinner, Mr Turner said there were dangers associated with joining the single European currency, but stressed that overall benefits would far outweigh them.

    Mr Turner said: “The euro will create a single market of transparent prices, reduced exchange rate risk and a pan-European capital market. Each of these will give a stimulus to competition and productivity growth across Europe.”

    Not mentioned: anything being in it for people who aren’t wealthy C-suiters on FTSE 100 firms.

  2. Nota Benny, Adair Turner (also a professional climate changer and associate of George Soros) was later rewarded for his priceless advice by being made Baron Turner of Ecchinswell.

    Ah, meritocracy!

  3. Hmmm.. Isn’t that the effect of insisting on supporting certain southern european nations in pretending you can have a pensionable age at 45, having deceased pensioners, and classing 50% of the population as “civil sevant”, especially when they’re family, without the economy to back it up?

  4. I think that the credit for avoiding the potential disaster (for the Euro, no less than for the UK) of having the UK within the Eurozone during the Great Financial Crisis must be shared three ways: to Osama bin Laden for inducing Tony Blair to spend his political capital “Standing shoulder to shoulder with the US”, rather than “Taking Britain to the heart of Europe”; to the Conservative Party’s grassroots in refusing to hobble the Party with Kenneth Clarke as Leader, even if the only offered alternative was IDS; and, only lastly, to Gordon Brown.

  5. @Alan Peakall: I never did work out if GB was a secret Eurosceptic and was against the single currency in principle, and created the Tests for joining the Euro as a way of stopping us joining, or if he did it merely to deny Tony Blair the glory of being the one to take us in.

  6. Jim, wasn’t it more that as Chancellor of the Exchequer he was trying to extend his power as much as possible, his main levers of power were economic, so having finally got his hands on them he wasn’t going to give them up to the EU? Whereas for Blair as PM they were much less important because he had other powers.

  7. “wasn’t it more that as Chancellor of the Exchequer he was trying to extend his power as much as possible, his main levers of power were economic, so having finally got his hands on them he wasn’t going to give them up to the EU? Whereas for Blair as PM they were much less important because he had other powers.”

    Yes thats another possibility, though I guess it comes under the ‘political reasons’ banner like my example of his obvious distrust/dislike of TB. There’s also the idea that as he had his ‘deal’ that TB would stand down as PM at some point in GB’s favour, the last thing he would have wanted was to be constrained as PM by being in the Euro.

    That was really my question, did he do it for principled reasons, or merely low political cunning ones?

  8. Bottler Brown’s entire life was an attempt to assuage his well earned inferiority complex by becoming “The Right Honourable Gordon Brown, Prime Minister of Great Britain and Northern Island”. Part of that was being “Mr Prudent” Chancellor and ending boom and bust etc. Which he didn’t.

    But he knew that if we joined the Euro he would go from Mr Prudent to just another gurning muppet in the back row of the EU line up.

    That is what it was about.

    In a way Blojob Johnson is also the same except without the inferiority complex bit. Blojerk surely doesn’t need the money. The Glittering Prize is all that this is about.

    And both of them are ill-suited to actually be effective PMs. Although Bottler will likely turn out LESS of a disaster in economic terms at least.

  9. But… but… I thought that unemployment was a lovely thing, because jobs are a cost not a benefit, thus and therefore the Euro Area is outperforming the EU as a whole. The cognitive dissonance here is so strong that it’s interfering with wifi signals.

  10. If Bliar had been against our joining the eurozone, Bottler would have been pushing for it with all his might.

    Southerner wins the moron of the day award.

  11. Southerner: a. useful work done is wealth created, unemployment implies that there is capacity to create more wealth; b. paying unemployment benefits is not useful work, it reduces wealth.

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