First, the good news. European unity is alive and well across the pond and, while strained, the world's youngest major currency, the euro, will survive.
And the bad news? We still have another month of negotiating to listen to as European central banks and member states try to reach another solution to the Greek debt crisis. Or, if you will, avert a Greek tragedy that engulfs the entire union.
It's a situation that Jim Bianco of Bianco Research ultimately sees benefiting the dollar.
"At least we're not Europe," he says. "They have a financial system that doesn't work properly. They borrowed too much, you have 16 countries using the same currency and screaming at each other in seven different languages. You don't have political union or the will to deal with problems."
So why does he think it won't unravel? Here's where it gets a little dicey.
The EU's bond, he argues, "is more cultural than financial. The Germans feel obligated to foster unity in Europe because of their long, sordid history." Politically, the Germans want the euro to stay joined, but financially it doesn't make sense. "Europe has 1,000 years of warring with each other, and that's what they're trying to prevent," he says
Even though polls show individuals are ready to "call the whole thing off," Bianco says, "the political class is not ready to go there."
I would argue that point because I firmly believe pols read polls and are having an increasingly hard time vigorously defending an unpopular position. So how will it play out? Bianco says the most likely outcome is less social welfare, less borrowing and no more promises of retiring at 50 with full benefits.
Is Bianco right, or do you think he's been spending too much time in Amsterdam pubs? Your feedback is encouraged below, or send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- European central banks
- The Germans