The Corner

Krauthammer’s Take

On the question of which party Charlie Crist will caucus with should he run and win as an independent:

It’s important. And the fact is that you could ask him today and no matter what answer he gives you won’t believe him because we now know that the pledges he makes have a three-week expiration date. . . .

On Alexi Giannoulias campaigning on financial reform:

When a guy whose bank has just failed campaigns on financial reform, you know that we have reached a new level of irony in this country.

On Greece’s debt crisis:

The Germans are the anchor of the European financial system. They will act. They have been slow to.

But the reason in the end Germany will act is because a lot of French and German banks are heavily exposed on Greek and Spanish and Portuguese debt. So if there is a default, the banks will also collapse. So they [the Germans] will have to bail out either the banks or Greece. You might as well do it by rescuing the Greeks and have the banks reimbursed.

The reason that the Germans are so reluctant is because the chancellor has state elections coming up on the ninth of May. This [Greek bailout] is hugely unpopular — about 80 to 90 percent of Germans oppose a bailout. The reason is the Germans are traditionally frugal, hardworking, and that is not exactly the German perception of the Greeks.

I’ll give an example. The retirement age in Germany is 67. In Greece it’s ostensibly 65 — 60 if you are a woman. However, if you work in any of the hardship jobs, a long list of them, there is a ten-year earlier retirement.

It’s not just the coal mining. It includes radio announcers, musicians, and hairdressers.

I chose the wrong profession. If I had been a Greek hairdresser, I would now be on an island in the Aegean drinking ouzo.

NRO Staff — Members of the National Review Online editorial and operational teams are included under the umbrella “NR Staff.”

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