Ideology as Insult
By Daniel Listwa. MA in Philosophy and Public Affairs at University College Dublin.
As the Euro Crisis heated up this past summer, I observed as a level of consensus arose among American, and other English-speaking, audiences with regard to what was happening in the Eurozone: the Germans, driven by moral ideology, set out to extract their pound of flesh from the Greeks, who, in German eyes, had irresponsibly spent beyond their means. Supported by the frequently pessimist writings of leading Keynesian economists like Paul Krugman and Joseph Stigliz, this narrative presented the German government as irrational and misguided, stating for example, “[t]hey were not orthodox economists following their models to their logical conclusion” (Krugman, 2015a). Rather, they were ideologues, subjugating reason to “morality-play economics,” and “political preference,” which has led Germany to impose harsh austerity and vast reforms on Greece, to Greece’s detriment (Krugman, 2015a and 2015b)