Monday, July 19, 2010

SEE! what happens when your economy takes care of producers

When I wrote Elegant Technology in the 1980s, I was pretty sure that the German (and Japanese) were most likely to build the new green economies.  I based my predictions on the fact that as the "losers" of World War II, their countries had lost a lot of their Predators and were forced by post-war treaties to enhance their Producer activities.  Over the years, it has become a mighty advantage when your Producers are the best (have I ever told you folks how much I love my Lexus LS?)

So here are the Germans gloating about emerging from the economic meltdown.  And Spiegel is lauding Keynesians.  Ah yes, Germany and Japan had some of the best economists to have ever walked the earth help with the rebuilding of their destroyed post-WW II economies.  Most of those American economists were Keynesians.  By the 1960s, the German were calling their economy Wirtschaftwunder (economic miracle.)
A Keynesian Success Story
Germany's New Economic Miracle
Germany's economy is rapidly rolling toward recovery. During the worst of the global financial meltdown, Berlin pumped tens of billions of euros into the economy and spent hundreds of billions propping up German banks. Now, the country is reaping the benefits as Germany is once again Europe's economic motor. 
It was just the sort of photo-op German Chancellor Angela Merkel urgently needs. Peter Löscher, the CEO of electronics giant Siemens, was sitting on a throne-like chair in the governor's palace in the central Russian city of Yekaterinburg. Contracts were being handed to him in brown leather folders, and every time Löscher signed one of the documents with his malachite green pen, the chancellor clapped with delight. The procedure took place four times, and by the time the round of contract signing ended, Siemens had secured Russian orders worth about €4 billion ($5.2 billion).
The real purpose of Merkel's five-day visit to Russia and China last week was to hold political talks with the two countries' leaders, but the most important message of the trip was meant for the German people. Look, Merkel seemed to indicating to German citizens, German industry is in demand worldwide, even if the government at home is divided and lacking direction.
The German economy has indeed come roaring back to life this summer. Two years after the outbreak of the financial crisis, the auto industry is adding extra shifts once again. The machine building, electronics and chemical industries are all reporting a rapidly growing number of orders. Total unemployment is expected to drop below the 2.8 million mark this fall, the lowest level since 1991.
For the first time in decades, the former "sick man of Europe" is back to being an engine for economic growth. According to an internal government assessment, the country's gross domestic product increased by more than 1.5 percent in the second quarter of this year. In their last prognosis, completed in April, government officials had predicted only 0.9 percent GDP growth. Production in the manufacturing industry increased by 5 percent over the previous quarter. The government assessment also shows that exports grew by more than 9 percent in May. more

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