The Eurozone as a Nexus of Contracts
Last last year, I had the pleasure of hearing a senior European policymaker address a gathering on the topic of the future of Europe. It was his considered view that no one could leave the Euro – and that the only path forward was more
cowbell integration. (It was 2011. We were all so young and naive.) Partly, this was a matter of facts-on-the-ground economic co-dependence. But he also believed in the strength of the overlapping treaties which would make exit all-but-impossible. Indeed, I was struck at the time that Europe was imagined – at least in the heads of certain Europeans – as a bit of a sovereign arising from nexus of contracts. The contract terms in the Maastricht Treaty were sovereignty for prosperity.
Obviously, things have changed. But the metaphor looks like a better fit than ever. It’s just that it looks like it is time for efficient breach of contract.