The fate of Yugoslavia reminds us that money, as well as being a technical device, a ‘means of exchange’, symbolises unity – or disunity.
Why is this? Money exists because communities exist. A community in which people live and trade – they exchange freely – creates value. Their money symbolises that value.
This moral significance of money intrigued Immanuel Kant, who wrote that the entire practice of lending money presupposed at least the honest intention to repay. If this condition were universally ignored, the very idea of lending and sharing wealth would be undermined.
For Kant, honesty and responsibility were categorical imperatives: the foundation of any moral order. For the European Union, likewise, these are the cornerstones. I would point to the two fundamental values: Responsibility and Solidarity. Our responsibility for decisions and processes. And Solidarity when it comes to bearing the burdens.
なぜでしょうか? 通貨が存在するのは共同体が存在するからです。人々が生活し、自由な取引を行う共同体は、価値を生み出します。共同体の通貨はその価値を象徴するのです。





The German emphasis on rules, and the attachment to the idea of an abstract order, worthy of loyalty in its own right, above and beyond any immediate personal connection or loyalty, is exactly what makes them able to run such a successful economy and successful social welfare state. When it says “Don’t Walk,” they don’t cross the street, even if no cars are coming. An economic union should be set up to support those principles, not tear them down, and social democrats should value this most of all.


When it comes to debt, the periphery countries simply don’t want to pay up. Their national wealth is many times their gdp and thus much much greater than their debts, even for Greece. It’s amazing how many people won’t come out and utter or recognize this simple truth. Italy for instance doesn’t have to make a huge fiscal adjustment.



Except for Greece, loans taken out by public and private borrowers were generally in good faith. The economic catastrophe that decimated their finances was unanticipated. You could say they engaged in poor judgment by not taking the risk of such a catastrophe into account, and you would be right, but this verdict applies equally to the lenders.



If the real estate market crashes in Spain, and the government is forced to step in to prevent a financial meltdown, what is the morality or economic sanity of demanding that the people of Spain be punished and forced to undergo a generation or more of austerity?