GoldMoney: ECB independence and political control:
James G. Rickards (Tangent Capital) and James Turk, Director of the GoldMoney Foundation, talk about the European Central Bank's role in the crisis and how it is becoming increasingly politicised, in contrast with its predecessor of sorts -- the Bundesbank. They talk about the possible differences between Jean-Claude Trichet and his successor Mario Draghi. James Rickards explains how Europe is developing a common fiscal policy with a common Treasury, in the form of the European Financial Stability Facility (EFSF), which will dictate fiscal policy for many member countries in exchange for rescue funds.
Rickards comments about the EFSF functioning like the U.S. Treasury while being under the political control of Germany leads to the conclusion that, in a way, Germany is taking over European fiscal policy. Whether this is good for the continent or not remains to be seen. Germany's fiscal track record is better than other EU countries, so there's reason for optimism; however, the narrow interests of member states may undo the political union. The rise of this "Financial Fourth Reich" helps explain why Germans are not as upset with footing the bill for the Greeks as I would have expected them to be.