Kern: Europe Declares War on American Ratings Agencies

As the financial crisis that began on Europe’s periphery — Greece, Ireland and Portugal — moves closer to the major economies of the center – Italy and Spain – and now threatens the continued viability of the euro currency, European leaders are scrambling to find a containment strategy. Their preferred course of action: shift responsibility by blaming the Americans.

European officials struggling to prevent the collapse of what has been described as “a giant Ponzi scheme” are angry — very angry — at American credit ratings agencies for downgrading the creditworthiness of several European countries and thus publicly exposing the true extent of Europe’s debt crisis.

Far from acknowledging the self-inflicted nature of Europe’s financial problems, European officials are pointing fingers across the Atlantic, portraying the ratings agencies as part of an “Anglo-Saxon” (i.e., neoconservative free market capitalist American) conspiracy to destroy the euro currency and, by extension, Europe’s broader pretensions to superpower status.

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