Föhrenbergkreis Finanzwirtschaft

Unkonventionelle Lösungen für eine zukunftsfähige Gesellschaft

Posts Tagged ‘James’

The Day After Tomorrow

Posted by hkarner - 6. Mai 2020

Date: 05‑05‑2020

Source: Project Syndicate by Harold James

Harold James is Professor of History and International Affairs at Princeton University and a senior fellow at the Center for International Governance Innovation. A specialist on German economic history and on globalization, he is a co‑author of The Euro and The Battle of Ideas, and the author of The Creation and Destruction of Value: The Globalization Cycle, Krupp: A History of the Legendary German Firm, and Making the European Monetary Union. 

As in the interwar period, the COVID‑19 pandemic will confront policymakers with the unenviable task of deciding when to declare the emergency over, and how to distribute the costs. The lesson from history is that the longer this debate is avoided, the worse the outcome will be for everyone.

PRINCETON – When (and how) to end the COVID‑19 lockdown has become the leading political question in every afflicted country. German Chancellor Angela Merkel has gone so far as to describe the increasingly intense debate as a collection of “discussion orgies.”

At the heart of the issue is the question of how to distribute the soaring economic and fiscal costs associated with the crisis. The closest historical analogy is to the twentieth century’s interwar period, which offered a crash course in navigating extreme fiscal circumstances. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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The United Kingdom’s Paradise Lost

Posted by hkarner - 2. Februar 2020

Harold James is Professor of History and International Affairs at Princeton University and a senior fellow at the Center for International Governance Innovation. A specialist on German economic history and on globalization, he is a co-author of the new book The Euro and The Battle of Ideas, and the author of The Creation and Destruction of Value: The Globalization Cycle, Krupp: A History of the Legendary German Firm, and Making the European Monetary Union.

In imagining a post-Brexit future, UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s government is acting as if it is entering a world of new, attractive alternatives from which to choose. But today’s Conservatives seem to have forgotten what their forebear, Margaret Thatcher, always understood: there will be tradeoffs.

PRINCETON – Goodbye, Britain. Brexit is done. It’s over. Some Britons are waving Union Jacks, and public buildings are illuminated in red, white, and blue. Having dramatically opened up a new space for political maneuver, the country is now celebrating its achievement.

This uplifting mood comes as a surprise. Following the June 2016 referendum, which “Leave” won by a relatively narrow margin (52% to 48%, with a 72% turnout), Brexit became a deeply polarizing issue. The bid to leave the European Union faced many legal challenges, and left Parliament bitterly divided and incapable of approving an exit deal. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Locating Equality

Posted by hkarner - 6. August 2019

Harold James is Professor of History and International Affairs at Princeton University and a senior fellow at the Center for International Governance Innovation. A specialist on German economic history and on globalization, he is a co-author of the new book The Euro and The Battle of Ideas, and the author of The Creation and Destruction of Value: The Globalization Cycle, Krupp: A History of the Legendary German Firm, and Making the European Monetary Union.

For years, wealth and income inequalities have been rising within industrialized countries, kicking off a broader debate about technology and globalization. But at the heart of the issue is a fundamental good that has been driving social and economic inequality for centuries: real estate.

MUNICH – Inequality is the leading political and economic issue of the current era, yet debates about it have long suffered from a degree of imprecision. For example, the standard measure of inequality, the Gini coefficient, reduces a country’s entire income distribution to a single number between zero and one, and is thus highly abstract. Similarly, while inequality is rising in many parts of the world, there is no simple correlation between that trend and social discontent or unrest. France is much less unequal than the United States, and yet it has similar or even greater levels of social polarization.

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Stories That Can’t End Well

Posted by hkarner - 8. Mai 2019

Harold James is Professor of History and International Affairs at Princeton University and a senior fellow at the Center for International Governance Innovation. A specialist on German economic history and on globalization, he is a co-author of the new book The Euro and The Battle of Ideas, and the author of The Creation and Destruction of Value: The Globalization Cycle, Krupp: A History of the Legendary German Firm, and Making the European Monetary Union.

After almost a century in which economic policymaking was the preserve of technocrats and social scientists, scholars from narrative-based disciplines have begun to feature prominently in policy debates. But by using partial knowledge to advance specific policy prescriptions, they have become even more dangerous than economists.

PRINCETON – In today’s irrational world of fake news and bad-faith politics, a new mantra has emerged: It’s all about narratives. Power today lies in one’s ability to tell a story. As a case in point, consider Ukrainian President-elect Volodymyr Zelensky, a comedian whose only political experience is that he played a president on TV. Zelensky beat the incumbent, Petro Poroshenko, because he knew how to spin a yarn.

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The Transatlantic Regulation Rift

Posted by hkarner - 5. April 2019

Howard Davies, the first chairman of the United Kingdom’s Financial Services Authority (1997-2003), is Chairman of the Royal Bank of Scotland. He was Director of the London School of Economics (2003-11) and served as Deputy Governor of the Bank of England and Director-General of the Confederation of British Industry.

European governments have seemingly concluded that hosting large, risky, and volatile financial firms and markets is not worth it, while the US administration still regards the financial sector as a comparative advantage for New York. Which side has made the wiser choice?

LONDON – US President Donald Trump made his intentions on financial regulation clear from the very start of his administration. He issued an executive order requiring that, for every new regulation imposed, at least two should be targeted for repeal. No such deregulatory zeal is evident in Europe.

The Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act, signed by Trump in May 2018, has, in practice, emphasized the second part of its title over the third. According to a set of regulatory principles issued by the administration, regulators must consider the competitiveness of US firms and advance American interests in international financial forums. The Treasury was instructed to produce four reports, covering banks, capital markets, asset management and insurance, and non-banks and fintech, to show how the principles could be realized through a variety of deregulatory initiatives. All four reports have now been issued. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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The New-Old Globalization

Posted by hkarner - 3. April 2019

Harold James is Professor of History and International Affairs at Princeton University and a senior fellow at the Center for International Governance Innovation. A specialist on German economic history and on globalization, he is a co-author of the new book The Euro and The Battle of Ideas, and the author of The Creation and Destruction of Value: The Globalization Cycle, Krupp: A History of the Legendary German Firm, and Making the European Monetary Union.

The European Union is increasingly divided over how best to manage economic relations with an increasingly outward-looking China. On the whole, European governments are probably right to be wary of Chinese investment; but that doesn’t mean they should ignore China’s vision of cross-border development.

PRINCETON – Once upon a time, everyone assumed that there was a single phenomenon called globalization, whereby cross-border flows of financial capital drove innovation, industrialization, development, and trade. But Chinese President Xi Jinping’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) advances an alternative vision of globalization, based on an integrated system of physical infrastructure. The material world of ships and trains will replace the immaterial world of financialization.

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Brexit Is Hell

Posted by hkarner - 6. März 2019

Harold James is Professor of History and International Affairs at Princeton University and a senior fellow at the Center for International Governance Innovation. A specialist on German economic history and on globalization, he is a co-author of the new book The Euro and The Battle of Ideas, and the author of The Creation and Destruction of Value: The Globalization Cycle, Krupp: A History of the Legendary German Firm, and Making the European Monetary Union.

Over time, public conceptions of hell have migrated from the realm of religious belief to that of literature and political aphorism. And nowhere is the idea of eternal damnation as punishment for one’s own choices more appropriate than in the case of the United Kingdom as it hurdles toward the Brexit abyss.

PRINCETON – European Council President Donald Tusk recently sparked controversy by saying there is a “special place in hell” for those who advocated Brexit “without a plan.” To angry Brexiteers, the statement epitomizes the unfeeling, moralistic attitude of the European Union technocracy in Brussels. British Prime Minister Theresa May duly issued a statement rebuking Tusk for his remark.

But May’s response scarcely matters. She has already extended her deadline for holding a “meaningful vote” on an EU-exit deal, effectively confirming that she will remain bereft of a plan until the final moments. At this rate, the delays and extensions of Brexit deadlines might well continue indefinitely. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Italy’s Writing on the Wall

Posted by hkarner - 10. Januar 2019

Harold James

Harold James is Professor of History and International Affairs at Princeton University and a senior fellow at the Center for International Governance Innovation. A specialist on German economic history and on globalization, he is a co-author of the new book The Euro and The Battle of Ideas, and the author of The Creation and Destruction of Value: The Globalization Cycle, Krupp: A History of the Legendary German Firm, and Making the European Monetary Union.

It is often said that Italy’s divergence from the rest of Europe, in terms of per capita income, started either with the ratification of the Maastricht Treaty in 1993 or with the adoption of the euro in 1999. But this chronology masks a more profound transformation in modern Italy.

PRINCETON – As the home of both the Roman Empire and the Renaissance, Italy has long been at the forefront of cultural developments in Europe and Western Eurasia. But it has also long served as an example of political decline. Edward Gibbon’s classic The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, after all, was meant as a warning to the author’s empire-building contemporaries.

Italy’s economic stagnation after the early seventeenth century was also held up as a cautionary tale. The nineteenth-century English critic John Ruskin implored members of Britain’s mercantile society to ponder the tragedies of Tyre and Venice. Describing Venice in “the final period of her decline,” he wrote of “a ghost upon the sands of the sea, so weak – so quiet – so bereft of all but her loveliness, that we might well doubt, as we watched her faint reflection in the mirage of the lagoon, which was the City, and which the Shadow.” Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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The Ghost of Brexit Past

Posted by hkarner - 5. Dezember 2018

Harold James is Professor of History and International Affairs at Princeton University and a senior fellow at the Center for International Governance Innovation. A specialist on German economic history and on globalization, he is a co-author of the new book The Euro and The Battle of Ideas, and the author of The Creation and Destruction of Value: The Globalization Cycle, Krupp: A History of the Legendary German Firm, and Making the European Monetary Union.

Now that British Prime Minister Theresa May has finalized an exit agreement with the European Union, a reversal of her country’s withdrawal from the bloc has become highly improbable. Like all revolutions dating back at least to the Protestant Reformation, Brexit has now acquired its own momentum.

PRINCETON – The European Union has gained member-state approval for an agreement setting the terms of the United Kingdom’s exit from the bloc. But it is still unclear whether a majority of British parliamentarians will approve the deal, given that it appears to leave decision-making power over British affairs in European hands.

One can reasonably assume that the agreement will be rejected by hardline Brexiteers, who see it as even less satisfactory than the status quo. And there are of course plenty of Remainers who oppose Brexit in any form. Yet, for all of its flaws, the Brexit that Prime Minister Theresa May has negotiated with the EU is likely to happen. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Europas viel zu komplexe Union

Posted by hkarner - 6. Juli 2018

Harold James is Professor of History and International Affairs at Princeton University and a senior fellow at the Center for International Governance Innovation. A specialist on German economic history and on globalization, he is a co-author of the new book The Euro and The Battle of Ideas, and the author of The Creation and Destruction of Value: The Globalization Cycle, Krupp: A History of the Legendary German Firm, and Making the European Monetary Union.

PRINCETON – Vor einigen Jahren drohte die europäische Schuldenkrise, das Schiff der Währungsunion zu versenken. Heute steht die Europäische Union vor noch größeren Problemen: Die Nord-Süd- und Ost-West-Spannungen in Europa haben sich vergrößert. Und nun ist nicht einmal mehr die Zukunft der Regierung der deutschen Kanzlerin Angela Merkel sicher. Ist es denkbar, dass die EU an diesen Spannungen zerbricht?

Logisch betrachtet gibt es keinen Grund, warum die EU jetzt am Rand des Untergangs stehen sollte. Immerhin wurde endlich eine nachhaltige Einigung über die griechischen Schulden erreicht, und das Flüchtlingsbüro der Vereinten Nationen hat in diesem Jahr nur 42.213 Flüchtlinge registriert – viel weniger als die Millionen, die 2015 an der Grenze der EU eintrafen.

Und trotzdem hat in diesem Jahr die Angst vor Migration einen Höchststand erreicht. Dies scheint nicht nur eine verzögerte Reaktion auf die große Einwanderungswelle vor drei Jahren zu sein, sondern auch die Unsicherheit nach der Finanzkrise von 2008 widerzuspiegeln. Die Europäer sorgen sich stärker um die Zukunft als noch vor zehn Jahren – nicht zuletzt deshalb, weil sie nicht davon überzeugt sind, dass ihre Politiker auf die aktuellen Probleme eine effektive Antwort haben. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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