The contrast today between Europe—the subject of my first few posts on Forbes—and the USA could not be more extreme. The crisis, when it began in 2007/08, was seen initially as a purely American phenomenon—and by some, proof that the deregulated American(and more generally, the Anglo-Saxon) model of capitalism had failed, while Europe’s more collectivist version was still going strong.
One of the most voluble putting that argument was then French President Nicolas Sarkozy, who asserted that the crisis proved that the American deregulated version of finance was kaput:
“A page has been turned,” he said, on the “Anglo Saxon” financial model.
“Even our Anglo-Saxon friends are now convinced that we must have reasonable rules.” (“G20: Advantage Nicolas Sarkozy vs Les Anglo-Saxons?”, UK Telegraph April 3rd 2009)
Well that was then. Now, it’s the European system—and its very peculiar rules—that are looking decidedly poor, while the USA seems to be powering ahead.