Mailvox: the fifty trillion dollar question

KJ offers the opportunity to ask a question of some European functionaries:

The former and long-serving vice chancellor of Germany (Dr Joschka Fischer) and the EU’s High Representative for Common and Security Policy (Dr. Javier Solana) are here… debating the economic situation (and potential solutions). The Spaniard is (in summary) saying the situation is looking pretty shit right now and it could be fixed by Germany “opening up” to the rest of poorer/less-productive Europe (when pressed he confessed that includes offering up more of its – i.e. Germany’s – money).

The German is (in summary) saying the situation is looking pretty shit and what we need is to centralise and consolidate political power in Europe. Lol! 4th Reich anyone!? According to both, the Euro breaking up would just be catastrophic. We can ask questions but I don’t have the heart to ask any. It’s so depressing listening to this glossy, typical politic speak from which no straight answers can be extracted. Do you questions for the German Vice Chancellor or EU’s High Representative?

I wrote back: Yes. Since inflation or default are the only way to escape debt of this magnitude, which is the vice-chancellor’s preference? If you get a second question, ask why the successful bank defaults in Iceland have not been permitted to take place in the EU.

Completely admits that historic 1920s inflation destroyed the German middle class, and admits not a result of market developments but intentionally by German central bank to write off war debt, so accepts inflation is going to have to play its part in the current situation!! Greek default, (and kicking them out), is not an option apparently, not forthcoming as to why other than that it would be “hugely detrimental to the rest of Europe”. No luck on the second question; earlier on he had alluded to “endless lawsuits” and “serious capital restrictions” to anyone taking the opt-out of paying their debts which he implied would make that option not viable. I didn’t hear Iceland mentioned at all.

This lends further support to what most of us here have always assumed, that the central banks and governments will inflate. The question is, can they do so? This is where the question of the nature of money, and if credit is more properly considered money or simply the accounting of money, becomes the 50 trillion dollar question. Nate and I will be debating this in the reasonably near future, but I’ll leave you with this thought: given their performance over the last four years, what are the chances that the core monetary assumption of the central banks and governments is correct?