Following Friday's high (and historic) drama, David Cameron naturally got both bouquets and brickbats from today's UK press.
A bouquet: All the UK is isolated from is an impending disaster: the eurozone will fragment with countries leaving and debt defaults. . . It is like being as isolated as a man who failed to get onto the Titanic before it sailed.
A brickbat:- As an act of crass stupidity, this has rarely been equalled.
And then there was . . .
British understatement, from one of the officials involved:- It's not the optimum outcome in terms of UK influence.
Ever-so-French overstatement:- Cameron acted like a man who goes to a wife-swapping party without taking his wife.
The reality:- In short, the summit that was supposed to save monetary union has been little short of disastrous. Going into the talks, the markets hoped for a happy ending to the sovereign debt saga: a deal to pave the way for the European Central Bank to ride to the rescue of Italy and Spain, under siege from the bond vigilantes. What they got instead was political schism, half-baked reforms and the complete absence of any fresh economic thinking. . . What was needed was a route map out of a situation that threatens Europe with at least one and perhaps two years of crisis. What we got instead was a blueprint to prevent the next crisis, assuming that monetary union makes it that far.
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