Merkel Is Ready to Greet, and Then Resist, Obama

Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany, an avowed friend of the United States and the leader of the European Union’s biggest economy, is diplomatic about the coming visit by President Obama. But she is clear that she is not about to give ground on new stimulus spending, stressing the need to maintain fiscal discipline even as she professes to want to work closely with the new American president.

Speaking in her modern concrete-and-glass Chancellery building last week, she underscored the points of drama that may well delineate the three summit meetings during Mr. Obama’s first trans-Atlantic trip since he was elected.

“International policy is, for all the friendship and commonality, always also about representing the interests of one’s own country,” Mrs. Merkel said in an interview with The New York Times and The International Herald Tribune.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, Economy, Europe, Germany, Globalization, Office of the President, Politics in General, President Barack Obama, The Credit Freeze Crisis of Fall 2008/The Recession of 2007--

9 comments on “Merkel Is Ready to Greet, and Then Resist, Obama

  1. Dilbertnomore says:

    Good for her. Obama needs a little sand poured in his gears. Even Paul Krugman thinks so.

  2. azusa says:

    What is the problem these Germans have with printing more money? or the Government running the auto industry?

  3. Robert Zaza says:

    azusa, as far as the printing of fiat currency is concerned, the Germans have a dread of inflating their currency. Printing of currency led to hyperinflation and a collapse of the Mark in the 1920s. The Germans do not want to see a repeat of this.

  4. InChristAlone says:

    Robert, I may be wrong but I think azusa was being facetious.

  5. LfxN says:

    And whatever you do, don’t mention the war…

  6. TACit says:

    I also thought azusa must have meant to be facetious, but wanting to get a better idea what Merkel might be motivated by, decided to search the net on ‘Germany 1920s currency printing’. One site presents the following very interesting chart comparing the progress of the German financial meltdown from WWI into the 1920s with developments in the US at the beginning of the 21st century:

    One might think that if anything like the list of historical developments on the left of this chart lurked in the memories of those in the US government, printing currency would be quite low on their list of solutions to the current problems.

  7. John Wilkins says:

    The Germans have a welfare state. Less of a need to stimulate the economy because people will continue spending and being cared for. The government already transfers wealth from the rich to the middle class.

  8. azusa says:

    Facetious? Moi?
    The Germans also have a rapidly aging society. Quite simply, there aren’t enough little Hansels and Gretels being born to keep their grandparents in the style to which they’ve grown accustomed. (But there are a few Mehmets and Fatimas.)

  9. Robert Zaza says:

    Even Angela Merkel knows Germany is in a demographic meltdown. Inflating the currency won’t help them there. Divine intervention is required. And I require fine-tuning of my sarcasm detector.