Germany Refusing to Pay for Others

 

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Merkel, caught between a rock and a hard place

German tax payers will not pay other people’s debt. This is in substance what the Chancellor, Angela Merkel, told the Frankfurter Algemeine Sonntagszeitung, June 3, when she said there could be no “union of the debt.” The comment was in response to news out of Italy that the new ‘populist’ coalition wants the European Central Bank to forgive 250 billion euros in Italian debt. The problem is, when you forgive debt, someone has to pay, and in Europe, that someone is Germany; the only EU country whose economy is strong enough to prop up the euro. Continue reading →

Val di Cembra: Escaping the crowds in Trentino

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Looking down the Val di Cembra

Cembra – Italy. Since the Dolomites were made World Heritage sites by UNESCO in 2009, the number of Alpine hikers and tourists has grown exponentially. But if you tire of the crowds and of finding mountain refuges and valley hotels booked out weeks and months in advance; if your mind spins from juggling the Südtiroler German names with those the Italians have been trying to impose on Alto Adige ever since they annexed it from Austria after WWI (how does Grassleitenpass become Passo Principe?), there is a valley not yet over-run by the international tourist industry and which is pure Italy without the noise, hustle and bustle: the Val di Cembra. Continue reading →