US President Barack Obama, September 26:

“What’s happening in Europe, you know, they have not fully healed from the crisis back in 2007 and never fully dealt with all the challenges that their banking system faced. It’s now being compounded by what’s happening in Greece.

“So they’re going through a financial crisis that is scaring the world, and they’re trying to take responsible actions, but those actions haven’t been quite as quick as they need to be.”

German newspaper Bild, September 28:

“Obama’s lecture on the euro crisis … is overbearing, arrogant and absurd … In a nutshell, he is claiming that Europe is to blame for the current financial crisis, which is ‘scaring the world’. Excuse me?”

“The American president seems to have forgotten a few details. The most important trigger of the financial and economic crisis was US banks and their insane real-estate dealings. The US is still piling up debt … The American congress is crippled by a battle between the right and the left. The banks are gambling just as recklessly as they did before the crisis. The president’s scolding is a pathetic attempt to distract attention from his own failures. How embarrassing.”

Nicolas Véron, a fellow at Brussels research group Bruegel (via The New York Times), September 29:

“Everybody has been living beyond their means for nearly the last decade, so it is an adjustment that will be painful and long, and it will test the resilience of societies socially and politically.”

Global economic powerhouses, almost as dysfunctional as one another, playing the blame game with only German Chancellor Angela Merkel seemingly able to save us all.

God help us.

Peter Fray

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