German exports slow down: Should Europe celebrate?
Those European leaders who like to complain about the ongoing trade surpluses of the German economy should not celebrate the recent slowdown in Germany’s exports and GDP growth. Higher labor costs and tensions in international trade may cause trouble for German exporters, but they are already investing in new production facilities in low-cost countries. If German exports slow down, their market share might be taken by German producers outside of Germany, while the productivity gap between Germany and the rest of Europe will widen.
Think of the unthinkable
For nearly two decades, the EU’s common currency system has worked wonders for internal trade. The euro has strengthened Europe’s financial position in the world. However, many government and EU leaders, and the European Central Bank have colluded in circumventing the system’s key safeguards. Today, the unmanageable levels of sovereign debt threaten to tear up the eurozone and trigger state bankruptcies.
Weighing the consequences of regulating internet giants
The United States stands at a regulatory crossroads as Congress debates whether to adopt European-style controls over the use of online personal data – or trust that Facebook, Google, and the like will respond voluntarily (and more efficiently than government) to their customers’ diverse and ever-changing privacy preferences. The wrong decision will secure the market dominance of the current reigning platforms and stifle internet innovation for years to come.
Opinion: The European Union and the true meaning of liberalism
The conservative-leaning EU governments in Central Europe have been bombarded with ideological accusations from “liberal” capitals farther west, but the Union’s truly dangerous division is between responsible and irresponsible approaches to governance and fiscal policies among the member states. A common finance ministry and money transfers would not fix this fundamental problem.
Cold war between Visegrad and Brussels
Brussels is angry with Poland, Hungary, the Czech Republic and Slovakia for allegedly lacking solidarity and “EU values.” But the European Commission’s plan to use financial pressure to rein in the four politically conservative Central European members is nearly certain to backfire.
GIS Dossier: Turkey and Europe
Europe can no longer take Turkey for granted or ignore its vital interests. Many in the West are rightfully displeased with the weakening of important institutions that the country has seen under the leadership of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, but realpolitik dictates cooperation in mutual interest. Europe and Turkey are in urgent need of each other in an increasingly unstable world.
The Balkans’ next challenge: curb corruption
Decades of stabilization policies prevented new wars in the Western Balkans, but democratic governance is hardly flourishing in the region. Under the guise of promoting stability, corrupt oligarchies have rigged political systems, effectively capturing states and making them unfit to join the European Union and NATO. Geopolitical concerns have prompted Brussels and Washington to target this rotten system for dismantling.
Turkey has the right to protect its national interests
Turkey is a regional power, a direct neighbor of Middle Eastern states and their historic trading and political partner. The West continues to ignore its national interests only at the risk of its own security.
2018 European perspectives
Today’s ruling elites of Europe have renounced its new political movements as “nationalist” and “populist,” and accuse some member states of no longer following democratic principles. In reality, though, it is Brussels’ overreaching ambitions that bring up the specter of autocratic rule in Europe.