Obama again lectures EU to ease up on austerity

Well our stimulus has worked so well.  Obama is aligning himself with the new French Socialist president on increased spending.  Notice the one country that has controlled spending the most has been doing the best.  From Reuters:

U.S. President Barack Obama will press European leaders to ease up on fiscal austerity and focus on economic growth at a summit on Saturday that will discuss ways to stem turmoil in the euro zone and head off the risk of global contagion.
At the wooded Camp David retreat in Maryland's Catoctin Mountains, Obama and leaders from other large economic powers will try to forge a common approach to tackling a crisis that threatens the future of Europe's 17-nation single currency.
Though no major policy decisions are expected from the Group of Eight summit, leaders hope they can bridge enough of their differences to soothe rattled financial markets after worries about the risk of a Greek exit from the euro zone sent European stock prices to their lowest level since December.
"Hopefully we'll get some stuff done," Obama told Italian Prime Minister Mario Monti as he and other summit participants arrived for Friday evening dinner at a lodge at the secluded presidential retreat.
Obama earlier in the day aligned himself with Monti and new French President Francois Hollande by urging a solution to the euro zone crisis that combines fiscal belt-tightening measures with a "strong growth agenda."
On the other side of the debate is German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who has pushed fiscal austerity as a means of bringing down huge debt levels that are burdening European economies. . . .
Paul Krugman thinks that those who oppose increased spending are trying to destroy the country.  Here is Krugman making the case for more government spending.

Krugman: "We have actually had a massive unethical human experiment in austerity doctrine.  Here we have had this view that cutting government spending is going to be good for the economy even when the economy is deeply depressed and we have put it into effect in large parts of Europe and we have put it into effect to a significant effect in the US . . . . And the results have been exactly what someone like me said that they would be, which is there has been a very depressing effect on the economy.  Where is the evidence that this other view is at all right?
Paul Krugman on Republicans in Congress: "Sometimes you do wonder if these guys are moles, Manchurian candidates for I don't know who -- if their real job is to bring down America because they're really are doing the best they can."

It is interesting to note that Brazil's stimulus policies haven't been working out too well also.  From the Financial Times:

Brazil’s economic output shrank in March, defying government stimulus measures and surprising economists who had predicted that Latin America’s biggest economy would begin to recover from a prolonged slowdown.
The 0.35 per cent contraction, compared with February, makes Brazil’s growth the second slowest in Latin America in real terms, after Argentina. The news comes as Asia’s major emerging market economies, China and India, are also decelerating.
“The weak … conditions are likely to encourage the authorities to add more fiscal and monetary stimulus to the economy and to remain activist on the foreign exchange front,” said Alberto Ramos of Goldman Sachs in a client note. . . .

UPDATE: The WSJ's Political Diary has this on Monday, May 21, 2012:

Washington's $15.7 trillion of debt is now officially larger than the entire U.S. economy. But Team Obama has convinced much of the media that skyrocketing debt is only a problem if politicians try to restrain it.
Witness the Beltway media scorn heaped on Speaker of the House John Boehner. Last week Mr. Boehner said that before allowing the debt to grow beyond its current statutory limit of $16.4 trillion, he'll demand the same condition he attached to last year's increase: cuts in planned future spending equal to the amount of the increase.
George Stephanopoulos, interviewing Mr. Boehner yesterday on ABC, largely rejected the premise that spending cuts are necessary. He asked if tying cuts to the debt limit increase would "actually create more uncertainty over the next several months."
"No, George, the issue is the debt," said Mr. Boehner. "You know, people aren't clamoring to invest in Greece today. And if we don't begin to deal with our debt and our deficit" in an "honest and serious way, we're not going to have many options."
Replied Mr. Stephanopoulos, "Well, as you know, a lot of people say that what makes us like Greece is putting the question of whether or not we're going to pay our bills—making that a political question." . . .

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