Why Germany might let Europe fall
August 18th, 2011
09:00 AM ET

Why Germany might let Europe fall

By Fareed Zakaria, CNN

This is the moment of truth for Europe.

For the last year or so, the Europeans have repeatedly produced workable compromises that kicked the can forward. They hoped these compromises would quiet the markets.

This strategy was often quite successful. Europeans kept promising, “Yes, we are going to bail out the weaker countries with the greatest debt load, but we want some structural reforms in return. And as we get more structural reforms, we’ll bail them out more. And if the crisis seems more intense, we’ll bail them out again.”

The Europeans repeatedly produced packages that were enough to satisfy the markets.  Their hope was that at some point concerns would dampen down and then in the quiet of the night they could allow a country like Greece to soft default - a restructuring that doesn't spook everyone and doesn’t become a Lehman Brothers-like event.  They sought a quiet reshuffling of debt.

I think this soft landing has now become impossible.

Today what people are basically asking is: “Is Europe’s debt going to be centralized or not?” In other words, is Europe going to be willing to say, “All our debt is pooled together and theoretically, as a single entity, we’ll pay it back.”

The key to this commitment is Germany. Germany is the only country that can pay.

But Germany is increasingly reluctant to do so.  What we're watching is the rise of a new, ‘normal’ Germany, which in turn will lead to the unraveling of the old, highly unnatural structure of Europe.

The old structure of Europe rested on an extraordinary degree of German abnegation of its own interests.  The Germans believed their national interest lay in subordinating itself in every way to Europe’s broader interest.  That was what Europe was built on.

That’s why when you go to Brussels to the European Union you find a French-run affair with Germany’s money - a German-financed, French-run organization.

That has changed.  The Germans, 60-years after World War II, are understandably becoming a more normal country. They are deeply, purely European but they are not going to pursue Europe’s interests at the expense of their own.

Despite what people say, Angela Merkel has been extraordinarily willing to bail out weaker states in Europe.  Obviously, she's tried to get a good deal in terms of forcing some structural reforms in Greece and places like that.  But the real story is that she did this despite German public opinion, which is now 75% opposed to any kind of bailout. This German opposition to bailouts will surely remain going forward.

And if that is the trend going forward, the Europeans are going to have a very, very big problem. There really is no way you can make the numbers work without a much more substantial German commitment of resources than there is now.  If that doesn’t come through, it’s very difficult to see how the euro in its current form survives.

The key to Europe’s future is how Germany conceives of its interests.  If it does so in a way that would be perfectly normal (it is important to emphasize there is nothing scary about Germany simply saying that it wants to do what’s right for Germany as well as Europe rather than always putting Europe above Germany) this might be the end of Europe as we've known it.  It might be the end of Europe as a constructed, political entity built and supported by key nations, particularly Germany, no matter the cost.

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Topics: Debt Crisis • Europe • From Fareed • Politics • United States

soundoff (644 Responses)
  1. ben

    These are exciting times. The economic ruin of the world and other troubles all point to one thing – Jesus is coming back soon!

    August 18, 2011 at 10:24 am | Reply
    • Doomguy

      That is what they said in the dark ages and during the civil war, during WWI and WWII. I could go on.

      August 18, 2011 at 10:28 am | Reply
      • FrmCdn

        Yes...that what they said in WWII and WWI etc.....and they are not wrong.......you have to be pretty ignorant to look at the state of affairs today in the global community, comparing it to the prophecies found in the book of Revelation, and not see something is happening......the year 1914 seems to be a major turning point downwards with the great war.

        August 18, 2011 at 10:50 am |
      • beelzebubba

        There's always a new generation that will believe the claim "the end is near". You have to admire the cleverness of the scam, which rakes in billions of tax-free "love offerings" yearly.

        August 18, 2011 at 10:51 am |
      • FrmCdn

        beelzebubba.....point taken....but you should also admire those who function completely on DONATIONS! and no I'm not talking about the one where they pass around a bloody plate almost forcing you to give money!
        I've done some research on the Jehovah Witnesses...and their organization is complete supported by donations...and i mean donations in the true meaning of the word! Nothing is ever asked of its follwers

        August 18, 2011 at 11:05 am |
      • Steve

        Frmcanada..hmm Jw's..now that is a nutbar organization who keeps getting "the end" wrong time and again but it is always 10 years away right. They proclaimed 1914, 1915, 1918, 1925 and 1975 as the end but it never came. Then they said "the generation of 1914 would see the end" but of course they have backtracked on that now and are proclaiming "a new light" again..i guess this new new new light will be better than the new new light was right? They were also wrong on being against vacinnations and organ transplants in the past as well but somehow they conveniently never mention their failures in their magazines.....sounds like propagainda doesn't it? While they meanwhile point fingers at the evils of christendom and their failures. Such hypocrites. You are married to a totalitarian based religion where god and the "governing body" are viewed as the same since the former works through the latter right? Read some history and some science and you may discover that your enmeshed in a religious organization with some "cult" related aspects..but of course you won't do that as everything in this world beyond that organization is enmeshed in a satanic conspiracy of some sort. When you pull your head out of you know where..welcome to humanity.

        August 18, 2011 at 11:25 am |
      • epicjourney

        Actually, the Civil War and WWI and WWII are signs that Christ is coming soon. If Christ came tomorrow it would be a twinkle in time between the Civil War and now – in the eternal perspective of time. Soon does not need to mean in the next day of so it could mean in a couple of hundred years.

        August 18, 2011 at 11:32 am |
      • FrmCdn

        Steve – you are absolutely 100% wrong....I don't know where you're getting your information from. BUT one of the key teachings of the JW's is that NO ONE KNOW's when the end will come! Period! They do however say we are living the the "last days".....so never have they in their history called for a specific date.

        This one of the key things I investigated when studying the group.

        August 18, 2011 at 11:44 am |
      • Jeff

        A sheep who eats the grass on the right side of the field is no different from a sheep who eats grass from the left side. In the end, they are both sheep.

        To see someone who is posting here that only their way of thinking is correct to intimate that anyone is "ignorant" is comical to me. Hello kettle, I guess.

        The bottom line with respect to whichever friviolous story you choose to believe is this. They are just stories. You may believe them if it makes you feel more relevant, but others do not. This does not make them ignorant, but your lack of objectivity towards what they may believe surely makes you.

        When it boils down to any coversation relating to god, particularly Jesus, I always ask this. Can you say with absolute certainty that Jesus and his buddies didn't merely eat a bunch of psilocybn mushrooms and merely record what they think they saw? The answer is, no, you cannot. You may believe that didn't happen, but you cannot say with certainty that it didn't. To someone objective however, it seems almost credible. After all, one must only look to the Pagans to see the striking "similarities" between Christianity and Pagan beliefs, of which the Pagans predate the Christians. Perhaps, just perhaps, Jesus and his band of merry mates were simply a group of guys who didn't believe what their parents told them, ate some mushrooms, and recorded what they hallucinated, all of which were based in what they had been taught all along.

        That you, or anyone, cannot fathom this possibility is the true evidence of ignorance.

        August 18, 2011 at 11:46 am |
      • lysander77

        Always something hilarious when someone says "You'd have to be ignorant not to see similarities between now and a work of fiction wrote 2000 years ago".

        Bad stuff has happened since the dawn of time. If every time something tragic or bad is about to happen, that means Jesus is about to show up, the poor guy likely is exhausted from showing up every day, for the last 2000 years.

        August 18, 2011 at 11:56 am |
      • Steve

        Well FRM..your research of the JW's must be by only reading their literature..that is not being objective. I am not 100% wrong. You can actually buy past JW literature on ebay or see pdf scans of them online..there is alot of evidence that they do not want you to see. Example, Judge Rutherford stated in 1920 that "millions now living will never die"...whoops. The 1914 prophecy is a well known failure but they of course have twisted that where they said jesus would return originally now they say he did it in invisible heaven..which of course conveniently nobody can prove..but you can take their word for it if you NEED to. I can also attest to the fact i was in the organization in the mid 80's and saw all the propaganda about the 1914 generation which i know they have backtracked on. Also pre-1975 in their literature they encouraged people to sell their homes etc and go out preaching as the end was nigh. Although the everday witness are very nice people I can attest. The ideology is pretty awful and the leadership is highly cynical based on my observations (their literature mis-represents scientists, they leave out key information that allows readers to come to false conclusions etc).

        August 18, 2011 at 12:04 pm |
      • American

        Everybody who replied to Doomman defending this "end times" BS is a total NUTCASE

        August 18, 2011 at 12:21 pm |
      • Bruce

        And they were correct every single time. In each instance, the world-as-we-knew-it ended, and a new world rose from the ashes until it became the world-as-we-know-it.

        That is, the "end times" need not be about the "end end times," but rather about an ending. Revelation was arguably about what happened to Jerusalem in the first century A.D., and most scholars contend that it was written AFTER the fact rather than before. Similar "prophecies" can be found in the gospels, seemingly pointing toward someone predicting the future, but in fact were more-likely someone looking backward and trying to explain what just happened in recent history.

        One need not be religious to see that the-world-as-we-know-it is coming to an end, that business-as-usual is almost over, and that a new way of doing things is on its way.

        August 18, 2011 at 12:52 pm |
      • Greg S

        Its interesting that the Bible said yall would say that

        That ye may be mindful of the words which were spoken before by the holy prophets, and of the commandment of us the apostles of the Lord and Saviour:
        Bookmark This Book/Chapter of the Bible 2 Peter 3:3 Knowing this first, that there shall come in the last days scoffers, walking after their own lusts,
        Bookmark This Book/Chapter of the Bible 2 Peter 3:4 And saying, Where is the promise of his coming? for since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning of the creation.
        Bookmark This Book/Chapter of the Bible 2 Peter 3:5 For this they willingly are ignorant of, that by the word of God the heavens were of old, and the earth standing out of the water and in the water:
        Bookmark This Book/Chapter of the Bible 2 Peter 3:6 Whereby the world that then was, being overflowed with water, perished:
        Bookmark This Book/Chapter of the Bible 2 Peter 3:7 But the heavens and the earth, which are now, by the same word are kept in store, reserved unto fire against the day of judgment and perdition of ungodly men.
        Bookmark This Book/Chapter of the Bible 2 Peter 3:8 But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.
        Bookmark This Book/Chapter of the Bible 2 Peter 3:9 The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.

        August 18, 2011 at 12:54 pm |
      • FormerJW

        I'm a former JW with a good, long memory. Steve has it pretty much right.

        August 18, 2011 at 2:20 pm |
      • FrmCdn

        Steve--you didn't just create that FormerJW profile did you?:)

        In any case, i can assure you...HE IS 100% inaccurate! This is a public forum...bring forth your evidence. And don’t point me to some dam website that is put up by some crony…use their own materials against them…go prove it.

        August 18, 2011 at 2:31 pm |
      • FormerJW

        FrmCdn: Nope, I'm not Steve. I'll offer you a little post-JW perspective, even though I know you'll declaim it.

        You're clearly still enthralled with the JW organization, and that's fine; you take what you need when you need it. For many people, belonging to a high-control organization is a better life choice than, say, substance addiction or suicide. In the broad spectrum of Christian organizations and Christian characteristics, the JWs are long on justice but short on mercy. As long as that's working for you, great.

        But keep in mind that you may grow not to need it anymore–the JWs, Christianity, maybe any organized religion at all-and you'll look back and feel awfully silly about how you shouted people down as if you knew what *they* needed better than they did.

        August 18, 2011 at 2:45 pm |
      • maye

        It will be a turning, to say its the end is in itself not something we are supposed to be looking for. Christians were tod to work hard pray harder and not look for the end of days because noone but the father will know what that is. No one else.. everyone else is a false profit..... we need to realize that slashes in "free" money will be needed... weither for rich poor middle ... that we need to close the gaps in poor rich and middle in all countries once again.... it will take some very resourceful and non selfseeking political influances and figures....

        August 18, 2011 at 5:51 pm |
      • Ivan

        Oh my, here we go with the religious psycho babble. I am still thoroughly amazed in this day and age so many people continue to erroneously regard religious teachings to be work of fact. The Bible, Koran, Hinduism, Buddhism, Book of Mormons, etc. Come on people! These are all fantasies created by people from vastly different cultures in different times throughout history that attempted (rather badly) to explain our human existence on this planet/universe.

        I am proud that Plato, Aristotle, Leonardo Da Vinci, Galileo, Isaac Newton, Benjamin Franklin and Albert Einstein chose to ignore such fantasies and seek out real, verifiable, measurable truths to our existence and in turn improve the conditions of the human race. You religious nuts should be thoroughly ashamed of yourselves.

        Jesus Christ? What did he contribute to us? The Dark Ages, The Crusades, Spanish Inquisition, Catholic Church/Christianity? Please we humans (in the western hemisphere) could have done perfectly well without that fantasy tale.

        To FrmCdn: I am an ex-JW. Obviously not one of the previous posters. The other comments in response to yours ARE very accurate. You either willfully neglect the insurmountable evidence already published by the JWs themselves or you truly are ignorant of the real history of the Jehovah's Witnesses. You can't have it both ways. The Watch Tower Bible and Tract has throughout their 125 year history given actual dates for the "end of the world."

        August 18, 2011 at 6:43 pm |
      • Stan

        Religous kooks dreaming of the end of the world. Very comforting. They wonder why we think they're creepy.

        August 19, 2011 at 8:01 am |
      • Jesus

        Hi Guys!

        Is this the thread on CNN I was supposed to show up for?

        August 19, 2011 at 5:00 pm |
      • Goatboy

        Just a response to Beelzebubba: a) you're right and b) it's always good to hear a fellow Bill Hicks follower chime in on world issues.

        August 20, 2011 at 9:29 am |
      • newsreel

        All our problems are human made, because of greeds and selfishness. Religious scare tactics over the years, are just trying to recruit more believers to their ranks to compensate for the ones who abandoned them, especially these days.

        August 20, 2011 at 6:43 pm |
      • Todd

        To quote a billboard: 2000 years of Any Day Now. You Jesus freaks are nuts. You are basing your life on a bunch of fairy tales. I suppose you think Bugs Bunny is a real "person" too.

        9/11 was the beginning of the end, Obama was the harbinger of the anti-Christ.

        Spare me the drama, morons.

        August 20, 2011 at 11:21 pm |
      • malasangre

        may 21 2011

        August 21, 2011 at 12:12 am |
      • Christ beleiver

        The difference between the Civil War and WW1 and WW2 is that today we have nuclear weapons and WW3 will be a whole lot more ending in these ending times. If you consider that it was ww2 that created the atom bomb and the arms race during the cold war you will see that these are end times.

        August 22, 2011 at 9:45 am |
    • seriously?

      Jesus? Are you kidding me? I hope you were being sarcastic.

      August 18, 2011 at 10:37 am | Reply
      • Beverley K

        I was thinking the same thing. How is what is happening in Europe related to all of this? Doesn't make any sense.

        August 18, 2011 at 12:49 pm |
      • Jeff

        I was wondering the same thing. How did this conversation get here?

        August 18, 2011 at 1:58 pm |
      • TheTruth72

        You wouldn't understand unless you read the BIble. In the book of Revelation certain things have to happen before Jesus can make His return. You will see a one world goverment, one world, religion, and one world economic system. The collapse of all world governments will usher in that economic system.

        August 18, 2011 at 2:06 pm |
      • Sean

        @ TheTruth72

        Revelations also says there is going to be a seven headed red dragon. Do you believe this is going to happen also or are you the ‘non-literal’ type? If so please show me the verse that says: Don’t take this literally but…

        August 18, 2011 at 3:25 pm |
      • Brett

        I thought the Messiah was already here ... and got elected president....

        August 18, 2011 at 8:51 pm |
      • Michele

        I love it when people use mythological texts as fact-based evidence.

        August 19, 2011 at 12:04 am |
      • Saboth

        @TheTruth72

        "You will see a one world goverment, one world, religion, and one world economic system."

        Oh good. I was getting worried. Fortunately we have hundreds of governments, economic systems and thousands of religions currently.

        August 19, 2011 at 10:39 pm |
      • Hay Zoos

        Nah, he's not serious. But I am. FALL TO YOUR KNEES AND WORSHIP ME AS EUROPE FALLS!

        August 20, 2011 at 9:31 am |
      • Jordan

        I don't understand the difference between Creationism and the Big Bang Theory? If God decided to create everything and then actually did it, and time doesn't apply to God. How is that any different then there being nothing and then all of a sudden life comes spewing forth into our "world"? If anything I would imagine science would further solidify my belief in God or a "God"....

        August 20, 2011 at 4:44 pm |
      • Guest comment

        Leave religion out of this and deal with the real problems (economic) in a real world.

        If Jesus show up at some point, great! However, don't bet your life on it.

        August 21, 2011 at 10:08 am |
    • Scott

      @Ben, exactly what I believe also. The signs are clear for believers. Non-believers? They'll try to use political tactics to improve life, which in the end, will fail. When we strive for improvements through our self-centered ways, the result is never realized.

      What everyone needs to do is to: Accept Christ, pay for redemption, ask for guidance, and God will follow through with blessings and all this mess will disappear.

      Next post will be ant-Christains comments,,,,3,2,1,,,,,

      August 18, 2011 at 10:38 am | Reply
      • DBLA

        Jesus? No, you need to accept the prophet muhammed and HE will light the way for you. Read the Quran and you will see the truth... it's all written there.

        August 18, 2011 at 10:46 am |
      • FrmCdn

        DBLA....did you say muhammed? I'm sorry but here are some key characteristics of a true religion from my perspective:
        1. Unity (one mosque preaches something on topic and another preaches something completely on another topic)
        2. Love (hardly find it in islam)
        3. Being different from the world. (you are very much invlove in world politics...your religious leaders take part in it...you are apart of they system.)

        Islam fails on all three. The only two religions that i know of who displays this are the Jehovah Witnesses...and NO im not one of them!

        August 18, 2011 at 10:55 am |
      • DBLA

        Those are difficult, if not impossible, requirements for a religion to meet. Well maybe not: I have one temple (my home), I am very loving, and I always forget to vote; ergo, the religion of DBLA-ism is now one of the three faiths that truly qualifies as a true religion to you! I actually think that the Branch Davidians and a number of other cults might make the cut.

        August 18, 2011 at 11:05 am |
      • FrmCdn

        DBLA – ahhh...making another worldly mistake of marking the JW's as a "CULT"...i've studied them...and nothing in their teachings or gatherings are CULT like....believe me...they serve no human...have no head priest, no pope...no imams...etc....only head is jesus.

        August 18, 2011 at 11:11 am |
      • nimesh

        both mohammed and jesus blows. Stop believing myths from 2000 yrs ago and embrace the random immensity of space and time.
        How someone can believe genesis and not believe in evolution is beyond me.

        August 18, 2011 at 11:21 am |
      • FrmCdn

        nimesh – see the problem with your evolution THERORY....is that I still can’t figure out how this great BIG BANG created the earth and all this wonderful life….you know…the earth being rightly position relative to the moon and sun. etc.

        August 18, 2011 at 11:31 am |
      • DBLA

        I never said that the JWs were a cult. I said that under your very narrow view of what qualifies as a religion, most cults would make the cut. As you have a definition of what a true religion is, I have a definition of what a cult is... and the bummer is that all religions qualify.

        August 18, 2011 at 11:32 am |
      • FrmCdn

        nimesh – oh yeah and some of us can't believe in this random space and time crap...because we've looked around and see that evolution and the bloody people who proposed such THEORY can't solve our dam problems.....have you ever think that maybe we're currently living in a gand experiement.......just to see how well we do managing things on our own? seems like we're doing a fine good job at F*&^&Ng things up if you ask me.

        August 18, 2011 at 11:35 am |
      • Dewd

        I see you're using English, but all I get from your posts is the screaming rants of crazy people.

        August 18, 2011 at 11:37 am |
      • DBLA

        frmCdn- don't worry about evolution and the big bang... take my advice and read the Quran. That will answer all of your questions. The only way the earth could possible be here is that somebody created it! And that somebody is Allah!!! Here is a valid logical argument:
        1) If the earth is here then Allah created it
        2) The earth is here
        3) Therefore Allah created it! (via modus ponens)
        If you can show me that this argument is invalid then I will agree that Allah is not the creator. To me it seems like a simple step then to say that if Allah exists, then the Quran must be true.

        August 18, 2011 at 11:37 am |
      • FrmCdn

        DBLA – my friend i beg to differ.....i would really challenge you to find a cult that diplays true love, unity and peach. And these three traits are not set is stone…these are just a few..so not my only criteria

        August 18, 2011 at 11:39 am |
      • steve harnack

        Flakes like you are the reason things don't get better. It interferes with your doomsday scenario. And there are a whole lot of flakes like you!

        August 18, 2011 at 11:40 am |
      • Steve

        Frm..you are at it again! JW's have no Immam? No priest? etc. What do you call the "governing body"? They are defacto worshipped. Notice that Jesus is not sitting on your couch where you can ask him questions so your "truth" is reliant on the governing body who interpret the bible for you. That is right..imperfect man has to interpret the perfect book right? You have a problem especially considering the bible has so many contradictions in it.

        Earth rightly positioned? Sure but life could still survive here 10 million miles away..and considering the trillions of solar systems out there it is probably not quite as unique as you suspect. Mankind blowing it? Well based on what we have been provided i would say many are doing well considering the "garden of eden" translates to the "garden of plenty". So do americans in aggregate have the basics covered? Enough food..yep. Enough Shelter yep. Heck even many on welfare have internet and flat screen tv's. How bout lifespan and healthcare..vastly improved...but then again you look at things from the "glass half empty" perspective and that only jesus can save us from the diseases he inflicted upon us..since he created everything. Humanity did not invent plague and cancer did they? Also what is the JW's solution? Everyone else with a different opinion (not accepting governing body as "the truth" will be exterminated in god's retribution plan..heck even a modern day Gandhi would be destroyed..oh I really feel the love..do you? Sure JW's are nice and polite people when you talk to them..hey they even dress in a suit so they must be nice. But again, if we are our ideas..anyone who beleives in extermination as being the solution..is pretty damn evil if you ask me.

        August 18, 2011 at 11:51 am |
      • Dawn

        yes he is coming and everything we do here counts even the internet
        lets all be good to each other

        August 18, 2011 at 11:56 am |
      • DBLA

        When you say that the JWs preach peace, do you include their predicitons that in 1914, then 1918 the rapture would happen and the "armageddon" would begin? I'm not going to break out my picture bible, but I kind of imagine armageddon not being very peaceful. My new religion (not a cult), the religion of DBLA preaches real peace! Don't worry people, there won't be any armageddon- you will live a nice happy peaceful life in some nice suburb of Des Moines. Oh, in order to get that peace you need to send me a check. 10% of your annual net pay would be nice.

        August 18, 2011 at 12:00 pm |
      • jp

        Grab your guns and slap your knee...JESUS IS COMING!

        August 18, 2011 at 12:05 pm |
      • PrdCdn

        FmrCdn…

        Ha, Ha, Ha Unity? Big Fail. Are you kidding me… how many different Christian Sects are there? All interpret the bible as they see fit… the only unity is in believing in Christ, but his teachings are all perceived differently.

        August 18, 2011 at 12:05 pm |
      • DBLA

        Slap you knees and grab your guns... MUHAMMED is coming!!!!

        August 18, 2011 at 12:07 pm |
      • tjc360

        lots of jesusobomahomad freaks in these threads, you people scare me....

        August 18, 2011 at 12:15 pm |
      • God

        Jesus will descend to earth at a time and place not known to any humans. To predict the coming, and thus claim to know God's greater plan is folly.

        August 18, 2011 at 1:08 pm |
      • FrmCdn

        Hey steve – you seem to know allot about the JW’s but yet you are totally wrong and know absolutely nothing about them……you’re right you have the absolutely BASICS! And the JW’s are not only focus on you Americans….as much as you like to think the world is made up of 52 States….But some people have a greater vision for mankind that your basics. Yes your life span is greatly improve so it health care…that that to the thousands every year that is diagnose with cancer and is going through chemo. The glass is half empty fool….every facet of our society is plague with lawlessness and filth! From sports to the vatican. FYI the JW’s from what I recalled don’t proposed any solutions…..they point to the bible as the solution….i.e. only under the coming God’s ruler ship will things improve for mankind.

        August 18, 2011 at 1:24 pm |
      • FrmCdn

        Steve – the basic point is....you either believe them or don't.....many don't and many do not. but form what i've gathered....they are different from the world religions....the are well schooled in the Bible, good family values, good family life, the kind of people you want to live next to…..their kids are brought up well law abiding citizens….they don’t vote but arguably they have silently done more for freedom of speech in the U.S. than many groups because of their numerous victories at the supreme court level…..just to name a few things I have noticed.

        And is up to you to prove them wrong….but so far very few have a good argument and evidence that back up their teachings.

        August 18, 2011 at 1:33 pm |
      • FrmCdn

        Scott – oh yes regarding the Governing Body...their responsibility is to coordinate the work…i.e. the printing of the magazines etc…absolutely NO ONE and I mean no one is seen as the head figure…or is worship! Everyone sits on the same level! I guarantee it! I’ve visited many of their facilities….its amazing that these guys gets it done by contributions and team work……and no bloody donation plates being passed around their members.
        Have you ever find a price printed on a JW magazine? Have a JW ever asked you for money? Pretty amazing what these have done are continue to do.

        August 18, 2011 at 1:39 pm |
      • FrmCdn

        Sorry Scott...I meant Steve in the post above.

        Anyway Steve....have a good one my friend it was nice chatting with you....please forgive the fool comment:) Got to run now....have one.
        Cheers.

        August 18, 2011 at 1:41 pm |
      • AmazedinFL

        DBLA, your 'logical' argument about Allah is not logic at all. I'm not knocking your religion, only your logic. Try actually STUDYING logic itself, and you'll realize that your argument is not a valid logical argument, but a textbook example of the logical fallacy of circular reasoning, also called a tautology. Again, this isn't criticizing your religion, only the obvious lack of logic in what you're referring to as a 'logical argument'. Look up the word 'tautology' and you'll see what I mean.

        August 18, 2011 at 2:14 pm |
      • mlw

        DBLA the WHAT?? how can you claim your religion promotes peace and acceptance when your quron demands that you convert ALL to islam, except christians and jews, who are "infidels" to be killed like a dog in the street.

        frmcdn, really?? you can't grasp the concept of evolution and the big bang theory, even though all evidence supports the theory. you can't figure out how the earth happened to get caught in an orbit around a star? and you can't figure out how the moon found it's orbit around the sun either? did you even attend science class? you can't understand how this happens, but you can understand how the God created the billions of stars and planets and heavens and earth in a single day.. really??? that's your argument?? just wow..

        August 18, 2011 at 2:18 pm |
      • AmazedinFL

        DBLA, to point out the logical error further, the first statement says: "If the earth is here then Allah created it." All of your other statements rely on the validity of that one. The burden of proof here is on the person who makes the statement like that. Unless you can prove the validity of that first statement, the whole thing falls apart. You asked others to prove that you're logic is wrong, but the real burden is on you to prove that the first statement is true. Logic–even solid logic– only works if all of the statements themselves that are used in the logical arguments are true. So prove it's true...

        August 18, 2011 at 2:24 pm |
      • FrmCdn

        MLW.....then stop using the word THEORY! I had a grade 8 science teacher...who always said..."PROVE IT!"
        YES MLW....I cannot understand how all the wonderful things in this world...came to be by your big bang theory...without some greater power. Oh yeah...before this BIG BANG of yours...was there a "pre bang"? and then another pre-bang? you know what I mean? how many of these bangs were there?

        August 18, 2011 at 2:25 pm |
      • AmazedinFL

        mlw, it's not so hard to understand. The argument that God did all of that in one day simply requires belief that there's someone with unlimited power who can do anything he wants. Understanding the big bang theory, evolution, etc. requires the applied diligence to really study it and understand it–too much work for most of the ultra-religious who bash it; it's easy to pull apart "science" and "scientific theory" when you have little to no understanding or knowledge of either.

        August 18, 2011 at 2:28 pm |
      • AmazedinFL

        Sorry–meant to say that it's easy to CRITICIZE "science" or particular theories when you have little to no understanding of either. That doesn't mean the criticism itself isn't utterly laughable/ludicrous to anyone who is actually somewhat knowledgeable/educated on the topic.

        August 18, 2011 at 2:30 pm |
      • FrmCdn

        AmazedinFL – no science book has lasted as long as the bible.....if it was total rubish...the get rig of it and stop calling the BIG BANG therory a THEORY. I have no idea if its being proven why its still called a THEORY.

        When comparing the Prophesies in Revelation with what is going on in the world today doesn’t make you pause and have a second look…then no “religious” fanatic can convince you other wise.

        August 18, 2011 at 2:39 pm |
      • FrmCdn

        AmazedinFL since you're so knowledgeable please educate me and teach me what existed before the big bang....was there a pre bang or something like this?

        August 18, 2011 at 2:51 pm |
      • Sean

        @FrmCdn

        Your first mistake is believing in bronze age fairly tales. Your second is believing the theory’s of evolution and The Big bang are the same theory. To your second point.. its basic math. There are billions of stars and from what we are starting to see trillions of planets. How many do you think it would take for a planet to end up in the green zone? People win the lottery every day.

        “MLW.....then stop using the word THEORY! I had a grade 8 science teacher...who always said..."PROVE IT!"
        …I agree, so prove your god exists.

        “no science book has lasted as long as the bible”
        ….Which version of the bible are you referring to?

        “please educate me and teach me what existed before the big bang....was there a pre bang or something like this?”
        ….The Big bang theory as you keep reminding us (as if that proves something) is indeed a theory. Scientist are not saying yes this for a fact happened. Unlike your side of the fence. More to your question though… yes. The theory as continued to evolve and some believe it is possible there have been many many big bangs. With the universe in a constant cycle of expansion and collapse.

        August 18, 2011 at 3:38 pm |
      • Erik

        FrmCdn - you sound mentally challenged. I suggest you learn how to write intelligible English sentences before trying to convince people that your preferred Zombie Cult is the bee's knees.

        August 19, 2011 at 1:59 am |
      • Maurice

        No, you are ALL wrong. You need to accept the teachings of the Prophet Zoroaster as outlined in the Avesta.

        August 19, 2011 at 11:45 am |
      • Drowlord

        @FrmCdn, "Theory" is a scientific (and mathematical) word that means something has been proven. When you say that word, you really mean "hypothesis." And technically you mean "idea" since a hypothesis has certain characteristics (like predictive value and falsifiability) that your ideas don't possess. Dopes like you enjoy using scientific words, even though you have little grasp of underlying concepts.

        August 19, 2011 at 2:33 pm |
      • TheHindu

        Lord Ganesh can kick Jesus' behind anytime.

        August 19, 2011 at 2:49 pm |
      • Valna

        Thank goodness someone finally pointed out that a "THEORY" is actually a scientific concept that explains a broad range of observable phenomenon and has yet to be disproved. I don't think anything in the Bible approaches theory.

        August 19, 2011 at 3:24 pm |
      • Saboth

        Do I have to pay for redemption now, or can I put it off for a few years? I really want to pay off my credit cards and car loans first.

        I agree with you though. All governments are doomed for failure if they don't use religion to govern first, and put their personal needs last. It worked during the Crusades, the Salem Witch Trials, and the Spanish Inquisition, so why not now?

        August 19, 2011 at 10:42 pm |
    • jay

      Jesus is not coming back ... "hesus from Mexico is"

      August 18, 2011 at 10:43 am | Reply
      • Borysd

        Lol best post of the day...by far! lol

        August 18, 2011 at 10:51 am |
      • Runway

        ditto

        August 18, 2011 at 11:40 am |
      • Israel

        hahaha...nice!

        August 18, 2011 at 12:28 pm |
      • TheTruth72

        I don't see any humor in that? What's so funny? All I see is a young boy that probably got a hold of his mom's laptop and posted to CNN article.

        August 18, 2011 at 2:08 pm |
      • Danair

        The humore Truth72 is your ignorance! Religion, all religions are cults filled with hate. If you believe in God then why do you need religion, so you can be around others (cult) that believe the same way you do; that means you're really not a true believer, you have to be reassured by your cult friends that it's not all for not! God has a sense of humor, noses on humans are living proof of His humor!

        August 19, 2011 at 3:06 am |
    • beelzebubba

      The same Jeeeeeeeeeeezus who was Jimmy Carter and Dubbya's "co-pilot"? I'd say he's 'blessed' us enough. I only hope Obama learns how to lead effectively so we don't end up with another born-agi'in evangelical misfit commander in chief. I'll concede that it will take a miracle.

      August 18, 2011 at 10:55 am | Reply
    • Karen

      Once again, only the U.S. can get the world out of this problem. European Union is trying hard to copy America, without success. One set of rules for everybody is essential. E.U. won't work under several rulers.

      August 18, 2011 at 11:05 am | Reply
      • Mr.Butters

        What in the world are you talking about? Stop waving your flag and look at this. This is 27 countries sharing multiple aspects of how their country is run. how is this copying the US? Is it because they used the word bailout? Is that what confused you?

        August 18, 2011 at 12:23 pm |
      • Robert

        What in the world are you talking about? Have you seen American headlines? Pick up your local newspaper and read. Niether us nor the Europeans are doing it right.

        August 18, 2011 at 12:28 pm |
      • David

        WHAAAAHHHHH!!??!?!?!? Since when has America been doing anything right!? America is screwed and so is Europe. Germany should either kick countries like Greece and Portugal out of the EU or remove itself and reestablish the Deutsche Mark. I don't think they should bailout the other countries again because they will ruin themselves if they keep on doing that. People need to take responsibility for their own countries. And I'm not German.

        August 18, 2011 at 1:17 pm |
      • merkurio

        Of course you are not German, not even European, otherwise you would know that is as dumb as saying that California could kick Montana and South Dakota off the USA. Go back to school!

        August 18, 2011 at 5:01 pm |
    • Common Sense

      Don't hold your breath.

      August 18, 2011 at 11:10 am | Reply
    • Jesus

      Hi-

      Is anyone looking for me? I already exist in your mind. Stop waiting for me, and take responsibility for your actions. World is a complex place to figure out. I am already here. No one else is coming.

      August 18, 2011 at 11:17 am | Reply
      • SPC Wilson

        *Twitches, then falls on the floor laughing. Is promptly fired for doing so at work.*

        August 18, 2011 at 12:03 pm |
      • PaxMan

        Perfect!

        August 18, 2011 at 12:29 pm |
      • Rivenspeak

        Win.

        close all further comments

        August 18, 2011 at 7:22 pm |
      • Bob

        Jesus, you are truly a saint! LOL!

        August 20, 2011 at 5:44 pm |
      • J2P

        That explains the voices...

        August 24, 2011 at 11:18 pm |
    • VR13

      I'm not sure what is so exciting about the economic ruin of the world. The economy and the stork market is my ability survive now and my ability to retire comfortably. I don't see any excitement when it goes unstable.

      August 18, 2011 at 11:26 am | Reply
      • Kraznodar

        I find it quite exciting because I never expected the artificial "retirement" situation to continue to be possible long enough for me to ever retire. Stability has always been a temporary condition between intervals of chaos. As Germany stops squandering it's wealth on fiscally stupid people, not ignorant which is understandable but out right stupid, then they will be in a much better position to unify Europe. As Ireland, Spain, Greece and any other countries fail the Germans can step in and gut their economies. This will drive them into a Soviet style "client state" status and allow a German hegemony. The more cautious countries will maintain an equal partnership with Germany and a maintainable balance will form.

        Raw capitalism is evil but deliberate blind socialism is unsustainable. A balance has to be struck but it won't happen when the stupid have just as much say as the wise.

        August 18, 2011 at 2:04 pm |
    • mseikeh

      My Sir, it would be a ruin which ushers in yet more super-hyper rich people to the detriment of the yet poorer poor people.

      I wish to see some hope of Jesus justice and reform coming in.

      August 18, 2011 at 11:26 am | Reply
    • Your Imaginary Friend From Heaven

      I exist only in your mind...

      Yes, believing in Me may be soothing and comforting, but it is still wishful thinking, my child...

      August 18, 2011 at 11:37 am | Reply
    • reACTIONary

      And when does, let's do to him what we did last time!

      August 18, 2011 at 11:52 am | Reply
    • Ben's an ass!

      DUDE, YOU ARE A COMPLETE IDIOT! STFU!

      August 18, 2011 at 12:03 pm | Reply
    • gaucho420

      Posts like this should be removed from the discussion, CNN moderators. This is nothing more than troll like BS.

      August 18, 2011 at 12:12 pm | Reply
    • sinical

      We'll just deport him back to Mexico again.

      August 18, 2011 at 12:15 pm | Reply
    • Howard

      Regardless of what any you "true believers" might believe, I ask you this: Even IF Jay-zus is coming within your lifetime, do you suppose he wants all his "true believers" to just let everything go to hell in the meantime, or do you suppose he wants his "true believers" to continue devoting their best efforts to making as much of the world right even without his help?

      It's something to consider.

      August 18, 2011 at 12:16 pm | Reply
    • TangoUniform

      Yeah, and Obama is going to come with him to give us peace, hope, and happy change – the un-American way. How about a little self-reliance and accountability????

      August 18, 2011 at 12:23 pm | Reply
      • Trae

        Why inject President Obama into this silly discussion? He loves this country, I also happen to believe that the republicans love this country. The problem is neither group can agree on the best way to lead the US through the difficult times we are facing. I think we would get a lot further if we decided to work together rather than bashing each other all of the time. We should be praying for his success rather than his failure. I didn’t like Bush, but I didn’t want him to fail either.

        There are many different beliefs in the world, I for one believe in Christ and I will preach his teachings to all who will listen and accept them. Some of you must realize by now that not everyone will agree with you (arguing does not prove your point or make you look smarter), so let it go and let them believe in who or what they believe in whether it be Muhammad, the big bang or string theory.

        As far as the topic, Germany decided to commit to the euro so they should be committed to it. Everyone knew there were going to be risks and benefits to joining the euro thereby linking their economics together. We’re just seeing some of those risk borne out.

        August 18, 2011 at 3:47 pm |
    • fgffffg

      how is a picture of a man stepping on a banana relevant to this story

      August 18, 2011 at 12:35 pm | Reply
      • Jeff

        Europe being overconfident that wherever they step will be stable, and Germany's ability to make them slip and fall. The picture is a perfect allegory.

        August 18, 2011 at 1:16 pm |
    • glenn robert

      Great sense of humor!

      August 18, 2011 at 12:37 pm | Reply
    • pastafaria

      Jesus Jones will be releasing a new album soon? Awesome!

      August 18, 2011 at 12:40 pm | Reply
    • DriftingJesus

      I've come back to let you know that you're a fool

      August 18, 2011 at 12:50 pm | Reply
    • BOB

      The God you believe in is not possible. A perfect being can not create an imperfect human. That would make the perfect being imperfect. Therefore your god is imperfect and fallable. On another note, a message coming from a perfect being can not be perfectly relayed through an imperfect human mind. Eat that!!

      August 18, 2011 at 12:56 pm | Reply
      • Teeph

        There's no easy way to say this Bob, so I'm just going to put it right out there. Your assertion that a perfect being CANNOT create an imperfect human is just flat-out wrong. Not only does it place an illogical limitation on perfection, but it also presupposes that humans are not perfectly designed for their intended purpose. Either way you come at it, you're wrong.

        Thanks for playing though. I find your sense of smug superiority oddly endearing.

        August 18, 2011 at 1:31 pm |
    • rrock

      This is what religious nut jobs say whenever there is turmoil. Your wishful thinking is delusion – go take your meds.

      August 18, 2011 at 12:57 pm | Reply
    • Frank7786

      fairy tales are funny......

      August 18, 2011 at 1:01 pm | Reply
    • asdf

      The only thing religious about this is the cultural aspect. Once again frugal Protestants are bailing out corrupt irresponsible Catholics.

      August 18, 2011 at 1:08 pm | Reply
      • Virgil

        But is Angela Merkel not Chancellor based upon the Christian Democrats? Are they not the decendants of the Catholic Party of Germany? Is their base not Bavaria? Have the Christian Democrats not been the governing party of Germany for the majority of the time since 1945? Was it not Konrad Adenaur, a devout Catholic, who put Germany back on its feet?

        It may not be so simple. The religious may be bailing out the secularists.

        August 19, 2011 at 2:29 pm |
      • Chris

        Most Germans don't take church or religion very serious. Not even the ones in the "Christian Democratic Union", the governing party.

        August 30, 2011 at 6:24 pm |
    • William Demuth

      He already did.

      A sheriff in Texas caught him and deported him to Palestine.

      Last I heard he was being fitted with a suicide vest.

      August 18, 2011 at 1:12 pm | Reply
    • Bruce

      Ben is correct. Jesus is returning.

      Except people won't recognize him as Jesus, even though his name will pervade everything that surrounds him. Jesus' return (this time) is in the form of the Tea Party.

      The end of the world (the world-as-we-know-it, anyway) will be well underway when Rick Perry is sworn in as President of the United States in January of 2013. Jesus will have returned, and the economic destruction will be greatly accelerated after the Tea Party conservatives charge in with their newly-found more-over-the-top-than-ever-before boldness and excitement and passion, and they will tear down every vestige of civilized society as we know it, and try to build something out of the ash-heap of history they just burned to the ground.

      Everything that will happen after that moment will bear the name of Jesus. It is the end of the world (as we know it) and the beginning of something new, and the something new will have that very name.

      Be careful what you wish for, Ben. It just may happen.

      August 18, 2011 at 1:12 pm | Reply
    • MattyJ

      Zombie Jesus ate somebody's brain...

      August 18, 2011 at 1:20 pm | Reply
    • George

      Jesus has been coming back for 2,000 years!

      August 18, 2011 at 1:25 pm | Reply
    • Ferd

      If you're referring to Chiu-Chiu my Guatemalan gardner, yes i think you're right. He headed south a while back with savings but things have gotten worse in the 'campo' so I expect him now any old day. I hope like hjell he brings back the rose shears he took away last time.

      August 18, 2011 at 1:27 pm | Reply
    • endtimes

      I hope so....

      August 18, 2011 at 1:29 pm | Reply
    • montyross

      yes the realignment is occurring with new leadership in the middle east and the decline in weak countries in e.u., the feet of iron and clay in Danial may point to 10 counties united in economic ties with oil and industry of the two regions. Greece can not give to the union but a democratic Iraq can with its oil reserves......

      August 18, 2011 at 1:36 pm | Reply
      • montyross

        which brings to the point of the decline of u.s.in Revelation chp 13. how could such a country as ours not be in Bible prophecy?

        August 18, 2011 at 1:39 pm |
    • Dapperdanman

      Ben, I commend you on your extraordinary abilities of trolling! Congratulations.

      August 18, 2011 at 1:42 pm | Reply
    • JC

      I am Jesus. Send me your money and I'll solve all your problems. The Power of ME compels you!

      August 18, 2011 at 1:44 pm | Reply
      • DontPreech2Me

        LMAO

        August 19, 2011 at 1:08 pm |
    • Frankenschnitzel

      The Odinic spirit of the German ubermensch is kindled once again. To reach it's potential, Germany knows it must leave the rest of Europe's multicultural medicocrity behind. The next Reich is coming.

      August 18, 2011 at 1:46 pm | Reply
      • Cris

        Yep, that's how WWII started, Germans thought that the rest of the world was dragging them down...so they had to defend themselves. WWI, same story. Their motto was "Gott mit uns" – "God with us"

        August 20, 2011 at 10:10 pm |
    • JAMESK

      I wish he'd hurry up.

      August 18, 2011 at 1:57 pm | Reply
    • SCAtheist

      Does he stop getting off on frying 10,000,000,000 souls in hell then?

      August 18, 2011 at 2:14 pm | Reply
    • Chazbo

      Jesus who?

      August 18, 2011 at 2:15 pm | Reply
    • B W Messenger

      Preach it brother! Our world is going to h-e-*-* right before our very eyes.
      The peculiar thing is, those who disagree with this are getting louder, and angrier, about how much they disagree with it; all the while, things are getting worse, and only pointed towards getting more worse.

      This, in itself, is yet again, another sign that totally reenforces your point. Powerful delusion.

      August 18, 2011 at 2:17 pm | Reply
      • Busturbubble

        You, religious nuts, are so predictable, always, repeating, the same, age old, true and tried, adage. "Things are horrible now, and they are getting worse." I, implore you, please, use a new slogan, to, recruit, new, equally ignorant, followers. It, is getting, very, veRY, VERY; old.

        August 18, 2011 at 8:23 pm |
    • Tobin

      I wonder if this is what the dinosaurs said as the asteroid came crashing to Earth. ;o) Look mom...Jesus!

      August 18, 2011 at 2:32 pm | Reply
      • Sal

        Ahahahahahahhh!!! You are the best!

        August 20, 2011 at 6:33 pm |
    • Christarchist

      How do you know that Christ's second coming isn't supposed to be you? And me. If the body of Christ would resurrect once again (meaning his followers living out their lives like he lived his) it would change this world. Maybe even reverse the fall because at that point, the revolution would be irresistable to everyone who saw true love in action. Want to see his kingdom come to earth? Want him to reign? We make it happen by following in his footsteps (I'm not talking about going to church, restricting gay rights, or passing laws about abortion).

      August 18, 2011 at 2:45 pm | Reply
      • SueMe

        Not that I believe in Jesus' 2nd coming, why would you Christians think it is time for return of Jesus. Christians and Jews are enjoying high quality of life throughout the world at this moment regardless of this roller-coaster economy. It is not going to change in the near future. Now those innocent children suffering from civil wars, diseases and famine in Africa for a century on and off, they really need a messiah to comeback and it is sad that no one has come and no one is going to come. Throughout the 2011 year history there are many atrocities far greater than anything we have witnessed last 100 years. And Ben, you think, it is time for Jesus' coming because of a recession?!

        August 19, 2011 at 12:51 pm |
    • mwpart

      The end is nigh – in 4 million years. The earth is supposedly going to be burned to a cinder when the sun begins to burn out and becomes a supernova. Or becomes a supernova and then burns out. Whatever. Something like that.

      August 18, 2011 at 2:52 pm | Reply
    • Carlos Osuna

      Wow!!! So now Jesus is going to be a German Banker... else why would he choose to comeback today...

      Kidding aside, Yeshua's teachings are more universal than ever just we have been bogged down by 1st Century Roman Catholic Church and 16th Century Protestants. Ironically modern pseudo-agnostic reform Jews are far closer to Jesus' original teaching than most modern Christians.

      Of course, this is my Point-of-View, anybody can beg to differ. In the mean time, I will continue to read CNN for the Political and Economical news, not for any Theological commentary whatsoever and I would advise you @ben to do the same.

      August 18, 2011 at 3:03 pm | Reply
    • Too late

      jesus was here last week he is gone back....i saw him at a club in manhattan with 20 vurgins and
      later in the week at a london disco with moses and allah ~ hard rocking dudes

      August 18, 2011 at 3:24 pm | Reply
    • george

      I hope he comes soon and then leaves just as quickly, taking all of his people with him. A world without his people, now that's what I call heaven.

      August 18, 2011 at 3:37 pm | Reply
    • beowolfe

      Sorry, Ben........but he's not coming back.

      August 18, 2011 at 3:59 pm | Reply
    • lecanada

      ummm, ok. Do I have time to order a pizza?

      August 18, 2011 at 4:01 pm | Reply
    • Alex Gessong

      @ben: economically, the world was a lot worse off during the 1930's. No Second Coming happened then. Why would it happen now? Do you really think Jesus' return will be based on economic factors? There's nothing miraculous or demonic about economic flux. It's a sign of nothing more than the fact that global economies experience great advances and great declines. This is not a new thing. Been happening for thousands of years, and will happen for thousands more. It's not about Messiahs. It's about markets.

      August 18, 2011 at 5:11 pm | Reply
    • Big A

      I doubt the coming of jesus soon because we still havent been introduced to the ANTI-CHRIST. but i will admit something Terrible is yet upon us. The world is changing faster than it ever has. weather, Money, and people; something is looming around the world. Soon a large percentage of the worlds population will be awoken.

      August 18, 2011 at 5:33 pm | Reply
    • Bubloo

      Now thyy wish they have let the Turkey join their Union 5 years back when Turkey was so eagar to do so. But their Islam hatered and fear of Turkey did'nt let them welcome turkey . Turkey has a massive positive economy and that move pushed it more towards Islamic Turkey.

      August 18, 2011 at 6:11 pm | Reply
    • eldono

      Jesus is back. I saw him last night in Topeka, Kansas.He thinks what's going on is crazy, and people need to correct their own problems. Their own problems.

      August 18, 2011 at 6:37 pm | Reply
    • oldbear60

      Only in your fever inspired dreams.

      August 18, 2011 at 6:43 pm | Reply
    • VumbAa

      You have got to love those Germans. Arrogant to the core and don't give damn what you think. Love it. And more power to them...Sorry they don't owe Europe a thing. America needs a little backbone like this, boy could they go far with a few more Germans in their administration.

      August 18, 2011 at 6:57 pm | Reply
    • Bob the builder

      Is Jesus coming back through a virgin again, with the help of his fathers uninvasive " holy spirit"?

      August 18, 2011 at 7:13 pm | Reply
    • To Ben

      You're right Ben, Either Jesus is going to come back (not reality) or aliens are going to land. But the reality is a war may start. Man's inhumanity to man is much more likely.

      August 18, 2011 at 7:51 pm | Reply
    • Susan Zantag

      What most people don't know is that 1000 years is like one day for God. Therefore, yes, Jesus is returning. It is time for repentance. Let's seek the Lord while He may be found!. At a blink of an eye Jesus is returning. Then it will be too late!

      August 18, 2011 at 8:46 pm | Reply
    • canbeserious

      To ben: Give us a break!!!!!!!!

      August 18, 2011 at 9:25 pm | Reply
    • Edwin

      Jesus is coming back ??? He died over 2,000 years ago... dead- no hocus-pocus- dead... you moron, no rising from the dead... ever... just dead. You are an intellectual midget if you think people rise from the dead. Old fables for the feeble minded.

      August 18, 2011 at 10:35 pm | Reply
    • sqeptiq

      Assuming, as Christians apparently do, that we humans are the crown of creation, why in the name of all that is holy would the almighty creator want to destroy his crown jewel? Do they suppose he's bored, misanthropic in his old age, or just a big kid who likes to build cool stuff and then knock it down?

      August 18, 2011 at 11:26 pm | Reply
    • xnay

      Most Christians have no idea why they believe what they believe.

      August 19, 2011 at 1:15 am | Reply
    • Rob

      Your living in a fairy tale buddy. Jesus is never coming back. Hes at the North Pole chilling with Santa and the Easter Bunny.

      August 19, 2011 at 1:34 am | Reply
    • Kyle

      FrmCmd and FormerJW are absolutely 100% correct. I am a former JW. I find it absolutely hilarious when I encounter JW's that are so young in "the Truth." So zealous. But unfortunately they are zealous in absolutely stupidity. They refuse to study anything except the literature provided to them by a group of individuals whom they do not know because if they read anything else than "the demons will possess their mind and make them think it sounds logical and reasonable."

      I am amazed that JW's never stop and think "Who wrote this literature? What are their credentials? How do I know they are who they say they are?"

      Did it ever occur to you that you are basing your life on literature written by someone whom you do not know? How can you verify they are who they say they are and that they are qualified to say the things they say? Let me guess: You have to have faith. Jehovah would never let that happen."

      Yeah... I totally expect that recycled brainwashed garbage response.

      August 19, 2011 at 2:27 am | Reply
      • Kyle

        Meant Steve not FrmCnd*** FrmCnd is a moron.

        August 19, 2011 at 2:34 am |
      • Bob

        Former JW too? Did Cartman finally beat some sense into you Kyle?

        August 19, 2011 at 10:56 am |
    • Danair

      OMG, another religious idiot ready to spread his word. I'd think you'd want to hope Jesus doesn't come soon, I hear He's getting rid of idiots first and it isn't rapture. Bible spounting people are equal to radical muslims!

      August 19, 2011 at 3:00 am | Reply
    • Paul

      FU

      August 19, 2011 at 4:43 am | Reply
    • MoreUrgent

      As the last surviving worldpower according to Daniel's prophecy of the rise and fall of the world powers is the Anglo-American double world power, Europe (and most probably the euro) will collapse earlier than the US and most probably the US Dollar.
      However, as Ezechiel says in chapter 8, 'neither their gold nor their silver will save them ... they will throw their money in the streets'.

      The financial collapse is inevitable, not because God is causing it, but because the system is built on greed and has only brought suffering to the majority of the world's population.

      So, good riddance, world financial system,
      good riddance, world economic system!
      After the collapse we can expect 'a new world governed by justice' according to 2nd Peter chapter 3.
      So, we have reasons to be optimistic.

      August 19, 2011 at 6:55 am | Reply
    • Will

      I have interest in Revelation. However, after thorough study, I have to agree with Martin Luther, that it should not have been in the cannon. The modern interpretation of Revelation came from the American Great Awakening, so it is completely an american interpretation used politically to fight globalization. If you just sit and read the book on its own, you'll find the picture it actually paints has almost no similarity to the way it is presented in modern churches. It's funny how religions are so dishonest and continue to be. There is great wisdom in the Bible, but it mostly ignored because it cannot be used for personal gain or to advance one's cause.

      August 19, 2011 at 10:04 am | Reply
    • JC

      Well you have hit on the biggest challenge we face in the US today. Any problem at all that comes up, and the evangelicals throw up their hands and say it is the end of the world. It saves the trouble of trying to find reasonable answers to complex problems if you let some 2-bit preacher tell you what "god" says.

      August 19, 2011 at 12:52 pm | Reply
    • James

      I "pray" that you are joking. Jesus was a person like Geoge Washington, you and everyone that ever existed was. He was not "God" born from a virgin or rose out of the ground. Use some common sense. The Gospels were written 80+ years after his death. None of the 4 (there are really more but the Church threw some out bc it didnt fit wih the story they wanted to tell) authors were even alive to see or meet him. Don't be ignant dawg.

      August 19, 2011 at 12:59 pm | Reply
    • trip

      Oh ben, you are so delusional. Please go back into the darkness from which you came. Take all those other bible thumpers with you. You really should see a doctor about your delusions.

      August 19, 2011 at 1:42 pm | Reply
    • god

      Jesus is not coming back. He's been a very naughty boy and has been sent to his room without supper.

      August 19, 2011 at 2:20 pm | Reply
    • Patrick

      "Soon" has been since AD 33. The message has been distorted by this mantra.

      August 19, 2011 at 2:34 pm | Reply
    • martinez

      yeah, Jesus Martinez is coming.

      August 19, 2011 at 3:56 pm | Reply
    • Ric

      Yah Right.

      August 19, 2011 at 4:24 pm | Reply
    • Scott

      Jeebus has already been here. Took one look around and went back home.

      August 19, 2011 at 4:48 pm | Reply
    • jeffision

      ...looking for my can of Jesus-Be-Gone.

      August 19, 2011 at 5:42 pm | Reply
    • Julian

      You're definitely right! Beware of the false prophets. Two scriptures comes to mind;
      Matthew 24:26 Wherefore if they shall say unto you, Behold, he is in the desert; go not forth: behold, he is in the secret chambers; believe it not.

      2 Peter 3: 3-4
      3Knowing this first, that there shall come in the last days scoffers, walking after their own lusts,
      4And saying, Where is the promise of his coming? for since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning of the creation.

      August 19, 2011 at 6:36 pm | Reply
    • Derwutkitten

      I will never accept the second coming if he is not a raptor jockey. I must have my messiah riding a dino.

      August 19, 2011 at 8:35 pm | Reply
    • rotorhead1871

      you have my sympathy...

      August 20, 2011 at 12:02 am | Reply
    • Cameron R. Frew

      'Life is hard, but God is good – ALL the time! You have reason for optimism, if you're looking for Christ's return! God is behind the scenes and controls the scenes He stands behind.'

      August 20, 2011 at 1:37 am | Reply
    • Mark

      What a load of crap. What the heck does Jesus have to to with the current economic condition of Europe? Stupid Christians

      August 20, 2011 at 2:07 am | Reply
    • halo

      Hope he has triple A credit when he comes.

      August 20, 2011 at 9:57 am | Reply
    • Bob Sakamano

      A religious excuse is still just that... an excuse. The way things are going is purely due to the greed of man, none of that god and jesus crap. When people use others for so long, the others finally stand up and say "no." Great job Germany!

      August 20, 2011 at 10:30 am | Reply
    • S. Studenberg

      How soon? My worry is that when he gets back here, nobody will believe he is who he says he is. Especially not Republicans, who, while saying they are Christians, by their lack of charity, are anything but Christians.

      August 20, 2011 at 12:20 pm | Reply
    • Jay

      Its scary to me that people use the world's ills as an indicator of end times. this implies that they are unwilling or convinced it is unnecessary to solve these issues- instead relying on jesus(magic jew) to solve it or, even worse, expecting it not to matter either way after an apocalypse. Either way, beliefs cannot be allowed to abrogate facts.

      August 20, 2011 at 3:05 pm | Reply
    • Jason

      That's what people have been saying for 2000 years, but I'm sure THIS time it's going to happen.

      August 20, 2011 at 4:00 pm | Reply
    • MICHAEL WHITE

      Ben, the question was why Germany might let Europe fail. Because of what happened to them in World War I and II. The Germans still smart from that humiliation to this day. I'd say a little pay back is in order. Do you get my drift, Mr. Fareed Zakaria?

      August 20, 2011 at 4:35 pm | Reply
    • ed

      How many chances can Germany get?

      August 20, 2011 at 4:39 pm | Reply
    • MichaelMRW

      Germany is just emerging from the stigma of WWII both financially, politically and psychologically. They are no longer afraid to speak with disdain about their sever loss of civilian lives and the virtual total destruction of their cities by American and British bombing. They are not about to sacrifice their financial gains or their cultural way of life for those European Countries whose lack of financial discipline they consider driven by a cultural weakness or lack of discipline. The cultural split here is huge!

      August 20, 2011 at 5:39 pm | Reply
    • mikel

      It will be the fall of the American economy that will do the most damage. With Obama at the helm, we can rejoice in the epic fail that will occur. Just as the bud on the fig tree signifies the coming of the spring – the destruction of the world economy will usher in the one world government....

      August 20, 2011 at 11:33 pm | Reply
    • ram

      or OBL was quite successful in attaining his goal.

      August 21, 2011 at 12:21 am | Reply
    • just-me

      How can he come back, i thought he died for are sins?
      O wait he resurrected, guess are sins resurrected to huh?
      The bible hehe always good for a laugh.

      August 21, 2011 at 3:49 am | Reply
    • dave

      When he comes back, do you think he'll stay at a Hilton or Holiday Inn?

      August 21, 2011 at 7:18 am | Reply
    • chris

      ben....you should really stay on your meds.
      jesus has been coming back for 2000 years! stop it!!!!!shut up.....please.

      August 21, 2011 at 8:29 am | Reply
    • kahn

      oh, Since thousands of years, human beings are afraid that this world is going to end...
      when human socities adopted different religions, they linked this fear of end with some personality just to motivate their followers to keep killing each other...
      today, muslims are waiting for Mehdi, christians are waiting for Jesus, jews are waiting for Messiah/Elijah and hindus are waiting for Krishna.......

      Leave such foolish people waiting, and let's eliminate each and every kind of discrimination from this world. We are just human beings. If we happened to be born by chance in christian family, we became christians. if we had born in muslim family, then we could be called muslims. We speak german language simply because we were born in germany by chance. We might be speaking french, if we had born in france. So this is just a matter of good luck and bad luck.....

      August 21, 2011 at 8:50 am | Reply
    • lookerdog

      Why can't we just have World Debt Forgiveness Day, and everybody start over with their cash on hand, work, and not borrow anymore?

      August 22, 2011 at 12:04 am | Reply
    • Pleb

      And pray tell how do you know that ? Why would he want to come back the human race is a total disaster anyway

      August 22, 2011 at 12:53 am | Reply
    • Sardo Numspa

      I'm sure Jesus would love to come back, but since he's been dead for at least 2000 years, I don't think he will be. Mostly because there is no such thing as magic. Also fake: Easter Bunny, Santa, Leprechauns and no-strings-attached one nighters.

      Sorry to break it to ya.

      August 22, 2011 at 1:19 am | Reply
    • Michael

      This whole "End Times" hysteria is just so much puffed up nonsense. There are not any more wars now than there have ever been, they are just more publicized in an more and more interconnected world. And it is mere historical illiteracy that allows people to think that all wars occur de novo. They actually do not. they are most often due to lingering social tensions from earlier periods.

      W W II grew from the cancer of discontent left after W W I.

      W W I was deeply rooted in the Franco Prussian War.

      The Franco Prussian War had many ties to issues left unresolved after the Napoleonic Wars.

      And so, on and on.

      Gloom and doom was a big fizzle in the Year 1000 CE. It came to a head again before Year 2000 CE and it will do it again in Year 3000 CE. If and when we humans finally come to an end (The Earth is much more secure) somebody will probably jump up and say "See, See! I told you so!"

      W W II

      August 22, 2011 at 1:29 am | Reply
    • Eric

      Jesus took one look, turned around, and went back.

      August 22, 2011 at 4:23 am | Reply
    • Richard

      If by that you mean the end of the horrific socialist "experiment" in Europe, I concur.

      August 22, 2011 at 6:59 am | Reply
    • LCJMI

      Face it, we are simply not that important in the grand scheme. Like every other generation who has said the same thing. Life is meant to be muddled through yourself, not wiating for someone else to swoop down and bail you out from the hard stuff. It's such a cop out.

      August 22, 2011 at 9:11 am | Reply
    • Feo

      Ugh. Dude really? I got a bible quote for you: Taketh thy head out of thy ass.

      August 22, 2011 at 9:47 am | Reply
    • JoeB

      Do you even read your Bible? Nothing that is happening now supports what your Bible predicts. Where is the anti-christ? The 1000 years of peace? Sure the famine and the wars part is spot on but it has been for centuries. But yeah, lets just sit back and wait for some mythical savior to return instead of trying to actually fix our problems. There is a reason your faith is dying, because people have evolved to realize how ignorant it is.

      August 22, 2011 at 10:14 am | Reply
    • Dan

      Ben, get a hold of yourself! This isn't even the worst economic crisis of the past century- and we managed to survive that one without the intervention of The Savior. He's not coming. Not now. Perhaps you should wait another two millenia.

      August 22, 2011 at 7:53 pm | Reply
    • bitbuckettx

      Jesus has been here for an hour. He's pruning the bushes right now.

      September 14, 2011 at 8:25 pm | Reply
  2. Various Authors

    HA! Idiot. You have no idea what Germany has planned. They've been planning this ever since they knew they were going to lose WWII. Rather than conquer Europe by war, this time they're conquering it financially. The end result is the same, and eventually Germany will destroy the U.S., and much sooner than you think. Herbert Armstrong laid out this scenario over 60 years ago. And now along comes little Zakaria Faheed to fill us in. Again, I say, HA!

    August 18, 2011 at 10:26 am | Reply
    • Collin

      I love conspiracy thoughts like this. A plan 70 years in the making. Sure. China had a pretty totalitarian hold on their society and their 5 year plans could barely get by. Good thing as more time piles on things get simpler.

      August 18, 2011 at 10:34 am | Reply
    • The German

      Yes, correct!

      And we have a new "wonder weapon" the US dreams of. You should be exited what Germany will show the world in a short time.

      The US Empire failed and the new superpower will be the German/Russian Empire. Look forward something´s comming.

      Yours
      the German

      August 18, 2011 at 10:40 am | Reply
      • USpower

        First of all, US will not fail. If we fail we take everyone down with us. May be a little conceited, but that's life. Nothing is fair in life, greedy people always win. 😉

        August 18, 2011 at 11:03 am |
      • Karen

        Du hast recht. Ich glaube. :-))))

        August 18, 2011 at 11:08 am |
      • Ja!

        Ja wohl! Deutschland uber alles!

        August 18, 2011 at 11:44 am |
      • ME

        You're gonna ally with Russia.... Riiiiight.

        Oh, wait, you're serious. Allow me to laugh even HARDER.

        August 18, 2011 at 11:54 am |
      • Steve

        Sigh..the Germany and Russia alliance is the future..that is funny. Both have serious demographics problems. Germany is a relative pip-squeek in population in comparison to the USA, China and India (the real future). The Euro looks like it may fail too so its not looking good.

        August 18, 2011 at 12:14 pm |
      • VumbAa

        You might be onto something with that German/Russian thing. Half the Germans have Russian blood so there is a brotherhood of sorts there. But lol, two of the most arrogant peoples in the world getting together to make a difference. The last time that happened there was a city called Stalingrad.

        August 18, 2011 at 7:04 pm |
      • j. von hettlingen

        @ the German, Frau Angela Merkel is not only the first female chancellor, she is also nicknamed by the Germans "Mutti" – the mother of the nation. According to your assessment she would propably be the first "Kaiserin" of the new German "Reich". Hurray!
        Frau Bundeskanzlerin, Europa ergibt sich Ihrer Klugheit und Fürsorglichkeit!

        August 19, 2011 at 3:43 am |
      • S. Studenberg

        Fekakte schwein, Russian have always hated Germans, Germans have alway hated Russians, and you have the mental accyumen of an Emu.

        August 20, 2011 at 12:21 pm |
      • Michael

        What Bunk!

        Most Russians despise and fear the German Nation. It has been ingrained in them since the days of the Teutonic Knights and reinforced many, many times since. They did not hold a large chuck of Germany hostage for 45 years for no reason and all. That does not even include the chunk that is now a part of .

        Happy Pipe dreams there, Mein Herr!

        August 22, 2011 at 1:43 am |
      • Chris

        Ha! I thought that was funny. Especially the super wonder weapon! 😉

        August 30, 2011 at 6:08 pm |
    • Steve Powell

      Could you elaborate how a country a tiny fraction the size of the United States could destroy it? I would be willing to accept a reasonable arguement. However, those who depend on prophetic predictions are usually wrong. I have a prophetic prediction also. Papa Smurf and his horde of blue midgets will come in 2012 and take over the world with their magic smurf berries. And there will be enternal peace and happieness on earth as we sing in a giant circle about how Smurfy the world is. Trust me. God me so. 🙂

      August 18, 2011 at 10:43 am | Reply
      • Lydia

        Germany's additional debt per second approx 2 Euro. America's additional debt per second approx $35.

        August 18, 2011 at 11:28 am |
      • Texrichie

        lmao.

        August 18, 2011 at 11:33 am |
      • ME

        Oh PLEASE No, I hate those stupid things.

        August 18, 2011 at 11:55 am |
      • el Bruce

        can Papa Smurf return in glory riding a unicorn?

        August 18, 2011 at 12:08 pm |
      • mikes

        So, power depends on geographic size. The US better watch out for Canada, they're bigger.

        August 18, 2011 at 1:16 pm |
      • Trae

        I think he means economic size.

        August 18, 2011 at 4:01 pm |
    • Mark

      And THIS time they deserve to rule the world. No more letting Greece and other countries spend, spend, spend like a golddigger with her sugar daddy's credit card. Now there will be rules that will have real consequences if they are not followed....

      August 18, 2011 at 10:51 am | Reply
      • VumbAa

        Sieg...STOP!

        August 18, 2011 at 7:21 pm |
    • Borysd

      Germany will go down with the EU!

      August 18, 2011 at 10:53 am | Reply
      • USpower

        I agree! Why else does Markel struggle to make this decision, if she lets EU fall, Germany will be further looked down upon. There is a reason why she is hesitating, otherwise she shouldn't have bailed Greece, etc.

        August 18, 2011 at 11:05 am |
      • Sasha

        Actually, Germany will go down if they do NOT remove themselves from the EU countries that can't seem to get their act together. There is a push in Germany right now in which Germans want to get out of the EU because they believe they cannot afford to be the bank to these countries. Germans, by and large, are tired of this and want to become another Switzerland. Merkel knows this and if she wants her party to continue to "rule" she better take this into consideration when she makes this decision. The reality is, Germans are sick and tired of paying for everyone else.

        August 18, 2011 at 1:00 pm |
    • Randy

      Why has no one focused on how much Germany exports to all these debt ridden countries? I know Germany can't prop them up forever, but if Greece/Spain/Italy etc. fail, who's going to buy and pay for all teh German products? This is just like China being dependent on the US – any chance they'd sit by and let us 1) stop importing Chinese products (i.e., everything we buy except tomatoes and .... ok, just tomatoes) and 2) cancel a few billion $$ in government debt they hold? Germany needs these markets; they'll figure out a way (and probably make France and a few others pay for it)..

      August 18, 2011 at 11:10 am | Reply
    • Kroutxzenmuztard!

      Ich werde dich zerstören!!

      August 18, 2011 at 11:40 am | Reply
      • Hoax

        I see your purchase of Rosetta Sone has paid off... And no, you will destoy yourself!

        August 18, 2011 at 11:59 am |
      • Uncle Sam

        Möchten Sie Pommes dazu?

        August 18, 2011 at 1:09 pm |
    • AB

      Batman will save us!

      August 18, 2011 at 11:45 am | Reply
      • Alfred

        Hmmm.. Given the same dilemma, what would Batman do?

        August 18, 2011 at 1:58 pm |
    • conrad

      The first German guy I knew was in undergrad. He came to our state school and made all of us look like bumbling fools. His work was amazing, he worked hard and he was smart. It was flabbergasting and inspirational at the same time. He was simply vastly more prepared to be in college than the rest of us. I've had the pleasure of working with more Germans since then and almost without exception it has been the same. They are disciplined, well educated, and work hard. We could take some cues ...

      August 18, 2011 at 1:42 pm | Reply
      • VumbAa

        Now your going to tell me he has blonde hair, blues eyes and he stand 6'4. And his name is Thor...

        August 18, 2011 at 7:11 pm |
      • Moin

        I agree. I supposedly went to a decent high school, but it's still not as good as getting and 'Abitur' from Germany. I felt I had to re-learn a lot of things during my bachelor's degree.There is something seriously wrong today with the American education system.

        August 19, 2011 at 10:27 am |
    • VumbAa

      Settle down before you start goosestepping. Germany still has a lot of issues with it's East and West thing. They're just flexing their muscles because everyone else in Europe is worse off than themselves.

      August 18, 2011 at 7:00 pm | Reply
    • Ric

      ...pssst: I heard this from Der Verschwörer: 'Boo!!'

      August 19, 2011 at 4:29 pm | Reply
    • rotorhead1871

      no problem! just as long as I get a new S550

      August 20, 2011 at 12:04 am | Reply
  3. Janice from Texas

    I wish our more of our politicians in the US were as brave as Angela Merkel. There is nothing wrong with balancing self-interest tempered with thinking of a larger good. But it reminds us, it's easy to spend "other people's money." That's what shared sacrifice is about. Everybody steps up to the bar and does his or her part. Most of all, they appreciate those doing more than their fair share.

    August 18, 2011 at 10:30 am | Reply
    • Andrew

      Yes and they show their appreciation for asking for even more then next time.

      August 19, 2011 at 8:14 am | Reply
    • Drowlord

      Not sure I fully understand how people who receive welfare can be thought to be sacrificing anything as long as they continue to not work and continue adding nothing to the system. Receiving a smaller handout or no handout at all isn't a sacrifice, because you're not giving up anything you deserve to have.

      August 19, 2011 at 4:34 pm | Reply
  4. Verena Zyla

    Great article! I am really looking forward to the future... it will be different and something new for sure!

    August 18, 2011 at 10:33 am | Reply
  5. John B

    Quick..everyone run out and start stocking up on food and water...and tin foil hats.

    August 18, 2011 at 10:33 am | Reply
  6. newt

    Y'all are really weird.

    August 18, 2011 at 10:34 am | Reply
  7. andreadealmagro

    The E.U is not run by the French and if Germany can infuse its fiscal model in the other members, she will support Europe. The opposite would be most that German products shut out of European countries because of the over-priced new Deutsche mark.

    August 18, 2011 at 10:37 am | Reply
  8. What am I missing?

    Isn't this the fundamental issue of the global problem and it is not just Germany. In this instance, the Germans want the benefit of the Euro (lower exchange rate of Euro vs Mark which helps/supports their export driven economy) without having to pay for it (Don't force my interest rates higher / make me pay for my partners problems). Same in US (I want all my promised benefits / let someone else pay for them). Same in China (I want to grow and export but at a controlled / favorable exchange rate). Isn't this the classic economic quandry of unlimited wants and limited resources. Am I missing something.

    August 18, 2011 at 10:37 am | Reply
  9. mdmooser

    Seems like no matter what the situation in this troubled world Faheed has the answer. Armchair quarterbacking by candidates and the press is free speech. Yeah free speech! Logic dictates several solutions are possible in this mode but that is when one person is putting an idea through with no resistance and that is not Washington or the world or how public opinion is splintered with hate and is lashing out. Good luck Europe, behind closed doors work it out and then come out and say so and be positive and rebuild and I think we should take a lesson from that concept too to get some sense to going forward. Destroying a country is not a family value. No matter what political party, we all and our children's children live in the same country and world, Wake up hard heads.

    August 18, 2011 at 10:42 am | Reply
  10. Middle America

    At some point you just have to stop throwing good money after bad.

    August 18, 2011 at 10:43 am | Reply
  11. Mike

    What we are seeing is self inflicted- not a divine reckoning. The question that has so far failed to be asked is, "Is there a fatal flaw in Capitalism?". We all took pleasure in watching the collapse of the Soviet Union and Communism, but it pales in comparison to this global meltdown of Capitalism. And, as the disparity between rich & poor continues to expand, we could well see violence spread throughout developed nations.

    August 18, 2011 at 10:46 am | Reply
    • Jeff

      True Capitalizm allows for failure. We do not. Therein lies the difference, as well as the cause of our economic issues. While it may seem "mean" to say it, Darwin and the animal kingdom had it right all along. The weak, when allowed to drag down the strong, will do just that.

      August 18, 2011 at 11:32 am | Reply
  12. Bettina

    I don't see why the Eurozone simply does not kick out repeatedly non-compliant countries such as Greece. Historically, the only thing that motivates nations and peoples to apply painful changes is the fear of far more difficult changes. Greece may hold a particularly symbolic place as a cradle of Western civilization, but that debt has been paid long ago by the more prosperous European nations that run their economic affairs more responsibly. Germany, on the other hand, may have held some responsibility toward other European countries due to its behavior in World War II, but the generations that were responsible for that behavior are nearly all gone, so I don't see why Germany should have to carry that burden of social debt indefinitely.

    Greece gave out far too generous social packages while letting itself become a nation of tax-cheats. It is time to let it go. It will then become an example for other wayward Eurozone nations to make the changes necessary to stay compliant to the original Eurozone rules of responsible economic planning.

    August 18, 2011 at 10:46 am | Reply
    • james

      because if they kicked out Greece, they'd have to kick out a bunch of others, then there would be no point in the Euro. Maybe they should kick out Spain, Italy, Greece, Portugual ...

      August 18, 2011 at 10:57 am | Reply
      • Bettina

        As I understand it, Greece was the worst of the so called PIIGS (Portugal, Italy, Ireland, Greece, and Spain) that were in economic difficulty. I believe that the other members of that group are more borderline. If Greece was set as an example of what happens if you completely bypass economic rules, then the other more borderline countries might be more inclined to make the major changes necessary to stay solvent. If they don't, then I don't see how the Euro will be able to survive either way.

        August 18, 2011 at 11:09 am |
    • Inge

      Bettina:

      I think the general model is simply broken. You can't have a single currency without a single government controlling the policies that have a drastic and direct impact on how sound their economy and by extension their currency is.

      If countries like Greece, Spain, Italy, Ireland, etc. have the liberty to create debt without penalty and can run back to the more fiscally sound countries for more "bail-outs", then the system simply cannot work. Citizens in countries that are more fiscally conservative will get pretty tired of paying for other countries' poor judgement.

      August 18, 2011 at 11:08 am | Reply
      • Bettina

        I agree.

        There were originally supposed to be rules of responsible economic behavior followed by countries that would take part in the Eurozone. Unfortunately, those rules were laxly enforced – which is why the Eurozone is in its current predicament. However, I do not think it is too late to restore fiscal solvency to the Eurozone since it is not too late to start enforcing those rules. Kicking out Greece would be one big step toward that goal.

        As for a single government controlling the Eurozone economic policy, I just don't see that happening in the near term – perhaps only later once enough economic pain has been experienced. It took a civil war in the US to change it from a relatively loose union of separately powerful states to a more centrally unified nation. The Eurozone might also need to experience more pain before nations are willing to give up full economic sovereignty.

        August 18, 2011 at 11:28 am |
      • James

        Wow Inge, that almost sounds like issues in the US. How long with the working class pay for the way for those not working? Citizens that are more fiscally conservative will get pretty tired of paying for others' poor judgment.

        August 18, 2011 at 12:36 pm |
  13. Phil

    Just to clarify something for the conspiracy nut: Yeah no plan just people being normal and saying enough is enough, we have been paying every countries way that announced it needed some sort of bailout by the way of the IMF and our own Funds. Meanwhile our social security and retirement payments had to be cut and our unemployment is reaching levels that were unheard of. So much for that.

    Overall I think that Merkel is smart to help in the bailouts but the picture is becoming clearer that the Mediterranean countries seem to have mismanaged not only their books but also blatantly lied to other countries about their situations before joining the EU indicates to me that it may be very possible that the EU may fail due to the amounting failure of these countries to manage themselves.

    The idea of bailouts has to stop it seems everywhere its thought that bailouts are the solution but all it does as the Author of this article stated "kick the can forward". In other words... We are going to have a rolling Recession/Depression as the measures to reduce/eliminate debt are seemingly blocked by idiots who cannot get over their political ideologies and put the people and their country first. Some may say they are doing this by being idiots, but to be honest butting heads doesn't and hasn't seem to work... Cooperation with some "Sacrifices" may work...

    By the way that doesn't just go for the U.S. it goes for all countries currently in financial difficulties or the ones that "think they aren't".

    These are my 2 Euro/Canadian/US Cents use them well... as i don't have many more to give... my wallet is somewhat empty as of late.

    August 18, 2011 at 10:53 am | Reply
  14. Jade

    (it is important to emphasize there is nothing scary about Germany simply saying that it wants to do what’s right for Germany as well as Europe rather than always putting Europe above Germany)
    Yet, the U.S. can't pull up stakes and go home on the global economy? We have to bail out Europea banks to save the world? There is so much European elitism going on right now it's sickening, let them all fail. German economic strength is all smoke and mirrors anyway, the whole socialist system is a joke. How long can these countries pay for every last citizens health care, education, and early retirement before it implodes. At least the U.S. transparent in our problems. Europe covers it all up and prays no one shines a light on it.

    August 18, 2011 at 10:55 am | Reply
    • Trevor

      Um... how is it smoke and mirrors? People in Germany work hard to make quality products, have low unemployment, socialized medicine, and certainly pay for it through high taxes. And they like how they live.

      August 18, 2011 at 11:41 am | Reply
    • Timothy Price

      Several European states actually lend money to the US EVERY DAY.

      August 18, 2011 at 1:22 pm | Reply
  15. Hans Smallegoor

    So after the U.S. tricked the entire world in thinking their problems are now solved it's Europe again which will be leading the world into despair? The focus is deliberately placed on Europe by american media to avoid having to explain where their own debt repayment is going to come from. I wish the world would come to its senses soon...

    August 18, 2011 at 11:01 am | Reply
    • Uncle Sam

      Nicht blutigen wahrscheinlich!

      August 18, 2011 at 1:19 pm | Reply
      • Nice

        Hahaha nice google translation

        August 18, 2011 at 6:11 pm |
  16. j. von hettlingen

    Frau Angela Merkel should devote herself to her own children rathan than mothering others, who are no longer manageable. It's important that her children have all love and care so they stand on their own oneday.

    August 18, 2011 at 11:04 am | Reply
    • what

      She doesn't have any children.

      August 19, 2011 at 10:24 am | Reply
      • j. von hettlingen

        The nation's population is her children!

        August 21, 2011 at 6:45 am |
      • j. von hettlingen

        The nation is her children!

        August 21, 2011 at 7:01 am |
  17. NOT MY CHAIR

    its funny how we created a superficial system of barter and currency that is destroying everything and almost everyone. but we reject the idea that what we have created is bad

    August 18, 2011 at 11:06 am | Reply
  18. Sven

    I don't approve of what they do, but why always Germany? Where is FRANCE?? UK???

    August 18, 2011 at 11:10 am | Reply
    • angelad

      Because they don't have the money.........

      August 18, 2011 at 11:38 am | Reply
    • Ben Hutchins

      The UK isn't part of the Eurozone. They still use actual money.

      August 18, 2011 at 9:11 pm | Reply
  19. Amit-Atlanta-USA

    I do agree with Mr. Zakaria that the current economic crisis in Greece, as also other countries incl. Spain, Iceland, Italy, UK, may in fact spell the end of the European Union.

    There is yet another aspect that Mr. Zakaria will NOT touch upon and that's the effect of massive amounts of UNADAPTABLE, WELFARE migrants (both legal & illegal) mainly from Muslim countries that is testing the ECONOMIC & CULTURAL fabric of these GREAT JUDO-CHRISTIAN civilizations with DISASTROUS CONSEQUENCES. Effects of these we have already seen in Norway, Holland, the UK, France, Italy, Greece, Belgium etc.

    Given that Europeans already pay HUGE AMOUNT of TAXES to sustain their Social-Democratic setup geared towards uplifting the poor & downtrodden, the CONSTANT BARRAGE of WELFARE IMMIGRANTS sneaking in to benefit from these largesse is already hitting the European belly really hard, and TRANSFORMING the DEMOGRAPHIC GROUNDS of Europe FOREVER!

    This threat is all the more serious given the over 10 times the growth experienced by these Muslim immigrants in the UK (& most of Europe), while there is a REAL DECREASE in the indigenous WHITE POPULATION!

    With Islamist supporters like Mr. Zakaria clamoring for MUSLIM TURKEY to embraced by the EU, this CULTURAL & ECONOMIC downturn of Europe is bound to continue as Mr. Zakaria rightly said......albeit for slightly different reasons!

    Here's an interesting story on how Muslims (particularly Pakistanis) have drawn up a major plan to SWAMP Europe while projecting it as a partnership between Europe & Pakistan!

    http://www.pkhope.com/pakistan-population-2050/

    Amit-Atlanta-USA

    August 18, 2011 at 11:13 am | Reply
    • SPC Wilson

      Your use of capital letters is inspiring. PERHAPS we should all CAPITALIZE words where EMPHASIS would otherwise merely be IMPLIED. Because everyone knows that makes CRACKPOT THEORIES more BELIEVABLE.

      August 18, 2011 at 12:29 pm | Reply
      • CRB

        HILARIOUS Wilson!!!

        August 18, 2011 at 12:56 pm |
    • susan

      My dear Amit from Atlanta,

      In your supreme ignorance you failed to mention that the United States of America was once inhabited solely by native peoples–who were exterminated, or, at the very least, treated quite poorly when the Europeans came a knocking. I don't recall anyone in Europe complaining about it.(I dare say that I am certain that your ancestors aren't Native Americans.) It's called karma. What goes around, comes around. Europeans took other lands, and now darkies from elsewhere are taking theirs. Quid pro quo.

      August 18, 2011 at 1:07 pm | Reply
      • Mike Haq

        It is funny that this Amit from Atlanta talks about WELFARE and PAKISTANIS, considering that he is a dark indian immigrant whose country is one of the top locations where jobs are being outsourced from the US.

        Mr. Amit, don't start digging a hole because of your hatred and non-acceptance of a particular country as someone might nudge you from behind in it because they don't like a "darky" like you either.

        August 18, 2011 at 1:49 pm |
      • Amit-Atlanta-USA

        Susan:

        You are right the British had occupied my former homeland (India) as well as my current homeland (US).

        They left India lock, stock & barrel and while India did suffer from the British rule in certain ways they also left behind a huge legacy (Education, Postal service, railways, English Language etc.) which india is surely benefiting from.

        So the CRUCIAL DIFFERENCE is the British/Europeans left these countries for good whereas the NEWER WELFARE IMMIGRANTS into Europe are there to take over those lands! With the gradual decline of the indigenous, tolerant, white Christian population, Europe 100 yrs.from now will take a NEW PERMANENT LOOK just like Pakistan is today!

        We see rampant signs of that transformation already in the ghettos of London, Paris (much like what you see in Pakistan!).

        I say this being myself a DARK skinned (as you put it!), non-Christian immigrant to this GREATEST OF NATIONS!

        Please note that most Americans (as are Europeans) are open to immigrants (even dark ones like me!) who will melt into their societies, contribute to the nation and NOT be economic and cultural parasites!

        Amit-Atlanta-USA

        August 18, 2011 at 2:22 pm |
  20. Common Sense

    The end is nigh. We will all be fending for ourselves soon. When it all comes apart, we will all be thrown into a modern dark ages where civil law vanishes. Get ready.

    August 18, 2011 at 11:13 am | Reply
    • el Bruce

      only if enough ignorant people turn it into a self-fulfilling prophecy through their own actions or inaction... it is comical how those with all the 'answers' to secrets of the afterlife offer no solutions for making this life better, other than everyone conforming to their social dogma, masked as religion.

      August 18, 2011 at 12:03 pm | Reply
    • Chris

      Fortunately, in Germany people don't care about religion as much as you apparently do. So they probably will not believe in that "End" and simply continue doing whatever they do.

      August 30, 2011 at 6:00 pm | Reply
  21. stevec

    Germany can not simply "cut and run" from the EU. It must be done in stages. First – withdraw from the EU and operate the way the UK does. Second – re-establish their own currency, the Mark. Third – close their borders. While these measures might look superficial, they will allow the Germans to take care of their own interests first. It is, after all, their own money. They shouldn't have to spend it on supporting a "socialist Europe".

    August 18, 2011 at 11:14 am | Reply
  22. George

    Who ever thought that a European union will last is dreaming. Europeans have a tradition of waging wars against each other for centuries and embracing each other all of a sudden is I think too far out.

    August 18, 2011 at 11:15 am | Reply
  23. dave richman

    Sure, Germany has to bailout Europe, and the US has to bailout Germany, just like we had to bailout GM. The time to face the truth and brace for the pain is here. No one can stop the collapse of several socialist countries in Europe and no one should try. The crisis will pass and the changes will be forced to happen dismantling the nanny states. Europe will rise again when they turn away from socialism.

    August 18, 2011 at 11:16 am | Reply
    • Hugo

      Don't forget that Europe had to bail out Germany after the fall of the wall. Some awesome president Reagan was to "tell" Germany what to do. Of course it crashed the German economy so bad, they had to push back the launch of the Euro because Germany's debt was too high from helping out the east german areas. Europe had to help Germany to reduce its debt so the Euro could go ahead as planned. So NO, Germany will not let Europe fail.

      August 18, 2011 at 11:38 am | Reply
  24. Phil

    Heya Jade

    The bailouts in the European Banks would be purely self serving. However I do not see anywhere in any news where it states that the United States are in fact bailing out European Banks.
    In fact I do not see anywhere where the U.S.A. bailed out European Banks, as these were primarily bailed out by the uhm oh yeah European Countries. Aside from that many European Banks guess what are owned by now defunct American Banks and being sold to trim their assets.

    As far as health care goes that part works quite well in Germany, maybe not in Greece or Italy. If you don't see your country being able to do that, thats fine it may not work for you but don't start bad mouthing our countries if you have no clue about our systems. To bad mouth something just because you don't seem to get it makes you seem extremely ignorant.

    August 18, 2011 at 11:16 am | Reply
  25. Dennis

    This is why I've been studying German for the past several years. Not only is it a beautiful language, it will increase as the language of business in the future.

    August 18, 2011 at 11:17 am | Reply
    • Hugo

      You are delusional. If that's true, you'd better learn Dutch every time you get gas at Shell, because oh yeah Shell is a Dutch company....

      August 18, 2011 at 11:40 am | Reply
    • bayonet

      Actually Germany doesn't have universal health care per se, unlike Spain, Italy, UK, France, Canada. Those countries are having problems but not because of their universal health coverage. In Germany,unlike the US, a person will actually be turned away from a hospital if no proof of insurance or funds is available. And the US does have many public hospitals by the way which the poorest have access to an in which the qulity of care is not necessarily below that of the universal systems.

      August 19, 2011 at 12:51 am | Reply
      • hankscorpio

        Things are looking great in Canada!

        August 22, 2011 at 7:36 pm |
    • Chris

      You may want to learn Chinese as well, though. Just in case.

      August 30, 2011 at 5:57 pm | Reply
  26. Stone

    Let the EU fail !

    The only way things change for the better is if there is no longer the means to support the status que that got them all into this mess in the first place.

    Oh... and before I forget, I've lived in Europe 1/3rd of my life and have seen first hand the changes that were brought about from the EU union and the Euro. IMO this was the worst thing to happen to Europe since WWII as all of the individual nations lost their uniqueness. Further more, the only group that directly benifited from the Euro were the rich as the middle / lower class suffered much hardship with the hyper inflation that resulted. Now here we are today with social goverments that are on the verge of collapse because of fiscal mismanagement... It's not like noone saw this comming but rather they've kicked the can over and over again, untill they've run out of road.

    August 18, 2011 at 11:18 am | Reply
    • el Bruce

      It all depends on your perspective. If you lived in Ireland, Portugal, Spain, Poland you benefitted a great deal from the EU.

      August 18, 2011 at 11:54 am | Reply
      • bayonet

        germany has been by far the biggest benefactor by creating a common market to sell all their goods to. life just got more expensive everywhere else to the point that compnies that had once outsourced to 'cheap' spain, portu, ireland have since moved on to cheaper. the particular case of spain has not been one of fiscal irresponsibility in the least. they were trul collateral damage from the giant us pozi scheme gone bust.

        August 19, 2011 at 12:57 am |
  27. jay howard

    The author is right on one point – the debt MUST be centralized. Then, the EU MUST enact some of the US' better policies, that is, the member states MUST balance their budgets annually - no deficits whatsoever. In addition, they should be required to pay towards the centralized debt. This federalization is actually a strength of the US. The states must balance their budgets. Only the ECB should be allowed to issue debt. Then all EU member taxes are paid out to the member states as a proportion of population or some other formula using extra monies to prop up weaker states like Greece from time to time. In the US we do this all the time to support deadbeat states like Alabama and Alaska who take in far more federal tax dollars than they pay in taxes. Individually, this will have enormous impact on each member EU state which will take time to rectify. But the upshot is that control of debt and collapse of states would be avoided.

    August 18, 2011 at 11:23 am | Reply
    • Stone

      Pardon me Jay but last time i checked.... The US policies that your talking about are the very same ones that allowed our government to run amok and create the current debt fiasco. Further more, most of our states are on the verge of defaulting as well with the lower property taxes resulting from the housing crash. Only thing is that the "other shoe" hasn't dropped yet... Just wait until your state and local governments fail to fund road works, schools, police and all the other "services" that we take for granted.

      Hell with all of this in mind... The US is the last country on Earth that should be telling the EU or Germany how to handle their money.

      August 18, 2011 at 11:29 am | Reply
  28. mike

    Funny how the Europeans are going to insist on a balanced budget stipulation for those countries needing bailed out. I guess the tea party has gone global! Obama's dream European style society is evaporating before his eyes. Even they understand simple economics. You have to live within your means. There needs to be a balanced budget ammendment here. If any political party wants to overspend they would have to cut or raise taxes. I would like to see them defend raising taxes for some of the crap they have rolled out of washington in the past few years!

    August 18, 2011 at 11:23 am | Reply
    • Mike

      Within reason, debt is a good thing. Governments, corporations and individuals have carried debt for centuries, including the newly formed U.S.A. in 1776. The balanced budget mantra of the Tea Party is just as ridiculous as the runaway spending they abhor.

      August 18, 2011 at 12:08 pm | Reply
    • Joe

      The welfare dream lives fine in Germany and many other countries, like Canada and Australia.

      It's always the problem with Southern States, both in Europe and in US!

      August 18, 2011 at 2:08 pm | Reply
      • Chris

        Welfare is being abused in Germany big time. Don't think it works to give someone more money if he/she doesn't work, than if they do work. There is a generation of kids growing in Germany now which has parents that never worked for a living. A lot of those kids will just end up on welfare themselves.

        August 30, 2011 at 5:55 pm |
  29. LMAO

    OMG. You people are an embarrassment to all Americans. Throwing around the word socialism, WW2 conspiracy, the EU will fail etc. You are so clueless.

    August 18, 2011 at 11:24 am | Reply
    • Stone

      To: LMAO

      Well, i can't say that you've contributed a god dam thing of signifigance in your post other then to troll / bash other posters.

      August 18, 2011 at 11:30 am | Reply
    • ckelley

      You forgot all the claims of "Jesus is coming, Jesus is coming!"

      August 18, 2011 at 11:50 am | Reply
    • ZSB

      I completely agree with you. Yes we American are clueless. As a hyphenated American and as a European immigrant from an ex-socialist country I can say Americans are so ignorant, superficial, and ill educated about many things. Who do you think benefited more from a cheap work force freely travelling from ex Soviet Union sphere of interest countries than Germany. Germany had an influx of cheap labor since sixties (Turkey, Yugoslavia) and continued to have the same after dissolution of the Eastern bloc. It is the time for Germany to repay some of the wealth and economic might they acquired to the rest of Europe since they have been profiting from them for such long time. Not to mention that that would be also morally appropriate. I do not think that Germany will get away from that. It is a payback time. And by the way I am partially of a German origin.

      August 18, 2011 at 1:37 pm | Reply
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