yeah to some extent you're better off than me, wording-wise.
but anyways, like i said, i don't believe the southern european countries' lack of accountability, if you will, is what got them into the current mess. artificially low interest rates did. with the economic history of fringe countries like greece or portugal in mind, why did ANYONE
believe they would all of a sudden come to their "northern european" senses? they've never acted responsible, from a german or dutch point of view. from their own point of view, they always have - as the possibility of a self-inflicted develuation had been obvious the back-up plan. it's been a political move since ages, widely respected even among economists.
well, within the emu, that major remedy is gone for good. so i guess in the end the demise of that terrible straitjacket has virtually no downside, for no country, no part of the continent, apart from maybe
a short-term liquidity crisis.
The fact that southern european countries have been switching on the print-a-thon every time they've found themselves unable to pay their debts does not mean it is the best way to go. The northern european way is better. Analysis, hindsight, austerity, competitiveness. The first three are structural, and the last one is dependent on them.
The emu was, from the get go, a challenge to the southern economies: either you wake the fuck up, or you're not going to be able to keep up. I fear they might have realised too late. Some might say things couldn't have gone any other way, that cultural values are too deeply ingrained and that that's the way it has to be. But look at countries like Slovakia, or Estonia. They have managed to hold their own precisely by implementing strict austerity policies and being smart in their decision making.